Question about gustard r26 and a good i2s input

Still kind of new to the whole digital thing (its a fad, really…j/k) and I was reading about a dac that I would like to get in the future. Its the gustard r26. In the description it says that usb can go to dsd512 but it takes i2s to get to dsd1024. What would be a good (and fairly reasonable) endpoint to use as an i2s source for those types of sample rates? Would the ethernet interface negate that need?

I know that there are i2s hats for the raspberry pi, but if I am going to invest that kind of money into a dac, I would like something without deficiencies. I want something that I don’t have to mess around with too much (as you will see below) so it is as simple as possible.

I am building my last system so I want to do it right. I want to leave it to my grandson so that he will start off with great sounding music and hopefully I can get him involved here. You are a great bunch of folks and I want him surrounded by people like that.

You guys know more about the Gustard r26 than I do. Let me know what you think. Am I barking up the wrong digital tree or am I on the right digital trail? Basically I am looking for an r2r dac under 2k that I won’t have to make excuses for (if that makes sense). I’ve see a few that are closer to 3k and I think to myself “do I really need that spare kidney” but then sense takes over …lol

I think you’re wasting money and time. R2R has no real advantage over delta-sigma and tends to measure worse than significantly less expensive DACs. Also, I can’t imagine any scenario in which DSD1024 (or DSD512) would be useful (other than perhaps doing blind ABX tests to show how useless it is).


Actually I prefer dsd over flac. I upsample all of my red book cd rips that are in flac format.

Anyone who owns a gustard r26 please chime in on my original question.

Ok, but then I’m not sure why it has to be R2R, since that is supposed to handle multi-bit better. For DSD, you just need a DAC that supports it natively; no resistor ladder needed for that.

(I also don’t understand why it has to be 1024, but I guess it’s another preference of yours.)

It doesn’t need to be 1024, but it is supported on the gustard. I was unclear on what would be a good i2s source to stream that from.

Mainly I upsample to dsd512, which is the higest my 200 dollar smsl can do. Why r2r? Because I want an r2r dac. I will also get a much better ds dac than I have now. It’s part of a plan.

Ok, I have REALLY got to pay attention to the dates of the threads that I read. I got the idea for the gustard r26 from what turned out to be a few posts from very early last year. After doing a lot of research, I have settled on a more modern r2r dac, the hollo audio spring 3 L2. That would seem to give me the most bang for the buck at that price range. I will still get a ds dac for my non-critical listening areas. I think thats a good trade off (considering I cant afford 2 spring dacs under any circumstances). The roon forums are full of information but some of these threads you had better strap in for the long haul…lol.

Did you look at the Cyan 2?

Just a reflection here, you seem most intent on what device to get, not what it does for you?

And given you prefer DSD i’d also look elsewhere than a R2R based DAC. (Even if i agree, and mostly use R2R based DACs also)

You’ll likely not find nirvana in extreme DSD sample rates, and not in I2S either.
You press on simplicity and stability but that an oxymoron when put in the same paragraph as DSD512/DSD1024 upsampling and I2S transfers.
None of these are given or even near a standard.

But if you hell bent, give Denafrips a look also. Pretty much sound quality for the money. And configurable as NOS (for upsampled music) or OS and at the same time a Native DSD path in parallell with the R2R multibit DAC