… D&D is working on an external companion preamplifier for the 8c that will have all manner of analog and digital inputs. They’re also working on Roon integration for direct streaming to the 8c. Stay tuned.
I did not know about the external module they are working on. Interesting.
I have been very intrigued by the 8c but a part of me wonders if they will soon be releasing an upgraded version (or a replacement/upgrade of the electronics module) — e.g. that can handle higher res files and perform all its DSP more accurately and with a lower noise floor. While I am not sure it makes a difference that can be heard, it would be comforting to know that these all-in-ones are upgradable.
Whilst there will always be something better just around the corner, D&D are a small company and apparently cannot keep up with current demand for the product. As they are also having issue sorting out their next update (the one that will see Roon Ready included) I very much doubt that any new products are anywhere near release. There is no particular shortage of preamps with AES inputs/outputs on the market anyway so why wait for a D&D branded one?
Realistically, how high do you need to go? 96kHz not enough?
There will be a ‘Sound on Sound ‘ review upcoming soon too.
D&D should answer a question like this. I am sure they have thought about it.
Remember that the 8c is widely used in studios. That bunch is extremely sensitive to product changes.
I think it’d be nice to see 384kHz all the way through DSP and DAC. Would probably require a new generation of DSP processors. If that would be an improvement over 96kHz is another question. Even if 96kHz is max for the design it will not keep me from buying a pair.
Just out of interest and very OT, where do you get music recorded at 384kHz?
Not very much at 384, that is right, but DXD is 352.8 and DSD128 is normally converted to PCM 352.8kHz if the unit can not handle DSD directly (as the 8c can’t). 384kHz is just 2x192kHz. Some get nicer sound with upsampling using HQPlayer for example. My Devialet amp takes 192kHz natively but uses 384kHz internally AFAIK.
Would be a pity if the new external box could handle high rates on USB or ethernet, but all had to be sampled back to 96kHz to work with the speakers
Doubts like these will get rid of the wait list pretty quickly!!
That may be true, but I think the future external box is more a studio device. One would not need it at all for home use. Imagine the simplicity with Roon, your local library, Tidal/Qobuz and just speakers! Or analog from your existing preamp! A dream come true for many
Well I’ve been using digital active speakers since 1989, didn’t have Roon then, had to plug in an SPDIF source (or analogue signal). Still got them, still sound pretty good. People do want higher sample rates though, that was a problem for Meridian.
If you haven’t seen them there are some associated measurements,
Taken at the NRC’s anechoic chamber.
Question to the community. I don’t have any music stored on a drive. All i listen to is via streaming services, e.g. tidal. Here, can the upcoming roon integration allow to directly stream from a pc/iphone running roon/tidal to the 8c, or would one need an extra device with the roon core running? Thx
You need a core if you want to use Roon, or look at speakers like the LS50w’s that have Tidal streaming built in.
Some news from D&D on the software issues over on Gearslutz. No date for Roon Ready though due to the delay in fixing the firmware:
And Martijn related his discussion with Sound Stage’s Doug Schneider ,
‘I had an online chat with Doug Schneider of Soundstage. We discussed the measurements of the 8c. He had some comments I think you guys will appreciate (partly direct quotes, partly paraphrased):
- The steeply rising distortion in the deep bass and the dip around 60 hz are artefacts of measuring in the chamber.
- The narrow distortion spikes are real. They measured a few times just to check. He thinks it could be the smallest thing like a wire rattling, or something came loose during shipping, possibly a narrow band resonance being excited.
- One thing to note is the deviation from linearity measurement. That’s actually a torture test on the thermal characteristics of the drivers. The 8c’s did exceptionally well.’
Courtesy of ASR forum.
I am seriously considering the 8c for a small, renovated music room (although the various problems Darko encountered are a major concern).
I am wondering:
- What stands did those of you who purchased the 8c’s end up using? Can you share photos of the combo? I have not seen many that are good aesthetic matches for the 8c. [Edit: Also, I have not seen many that specifically indicate that they are rated for the weight of the 8c.]
- As this room might need to have a cabinet/console along the wall where the speakers will be placed, do you think the 8c’s can be placed on the top of the cabinet without compromising the sound? Are there desk top stands or platforms you think would help? Would it make a difference if I selected a cabinet top surface that was especially sturdy (thicker wood or other materials)?
- For those of you that have tried the direct Roon integration, how would you compare the sound quality vs other inputs like Roon via AES or Roon via USB?
For better or worse, I want to make sure that the speakers are a major factor in the design of the room — an affliction I am sure many of you can empathize with.
Faults happen, with all products at all prices.
But the probability of having two pairs damaged in transit, both times hand delivered by one of the designers… And even for the 3rd pair “Or it could be a hardware fault. Time will tell.”
Kudos to Darko for the transparency.
His (initial) impressions of the 8C’s vs Kii3’s are very similar to mine in demo’s too.
After getting room measurements with something like REW with a calibrated mic, the ability to apply digital room EQ without needing additional software or hardware is cool. Although it reads like it’s a time consuming process. A ‘few hours’ work’ for one the speakers designers is probably 6+ hours for me. Maybe for just the first attempt though.
I used a pair of adjustable stands from Sound Anchors which were entirely up to the task in terms of stability and weight capacity. Aesthetics? Cannot say because I don’t care for the appearance of any stand-mount speakers.
What USB input? Analog, AES3 or Ethernet only, afaik.
My pair arrived unscathed via common carrier.
Noted. I wasn’t hinting that there is a QA issue… only that Darko was extremely unlucky despite hand delivery by D&D Engineer (twice…).
The 8C’s are very high on my list for next speakers. I think their warranty is 5 years with product registration - that’s excellent warranty support for powered speakers.