I have a Marantz AV8801 pre/pro hooked to XPA-1L amps for the front channels. I'm looking for a way to improve the audio quality mainly for CD/LP playback. My CD player is Marantz CD6005 and I find the sound to be too laid-back. I tried both analog and digital outputs of the player and I'm not satisfied with the results so I was thinking about using a separate DAC which will sound better than the one in the CD player and in the pre-pro. One option that came into mind is the DC-1. I have some concerns/comments regarding this direction - 1. Not sure if this is what will solve the playback quality 2. I was thinking about using the XSP-1 preamp along with my pre-pro and I'm not sure how this combination will work with the DC-1 because the DC-1 is also a preamp 3. I have the XPS-1 phono stage so the phono stage in the XSP-1 is not critical for me 4. Should I wait for the DC-2?
P.S., I was also thinking about moving to a XMC-1 because I've read good things about it but I'm not sure it has the true balanced capabilities of the XPA-1L and the XSP-1.
When you tried the digital outs of the Marantz, what did you send them to?
The DC-1 is a very good DAC and I would think if you sent digital out to it (or another excellent DAC), you would hear an improvement but if your digital outs already went to an excellent DAC, then...that's odd if you didn't hear an improvement.
On your #2, you can set the DC-1 to fixed output and then its preamp is bypassed.
On #4, Emotiva says it will be better than the DC-1, but timing and level of improvement is not known. If you have time to wait, it could be worth it, but who knows?
The XMC-1 would be a good option and you would not need an external DAC. I found its sound to be as good as the DC-1 for 2 channel. And, I am pretty sure its FR and FL are balanced, so you would leverage the full benefits of the XPA-1L and XSP-1.
XMC-1 DIRAC Full; Oppo 105/Roku Ultra to Panny AE4000 w/106" screen; UltraRendu to LH Labs Geek Pulse X-Infinity; nCore nc400's or Prima Luna Premium Prologue to Maggie 1.7's; Rythmik F25; XPA-5 to CC-470v3 Center/ERD-1's; Thorens TD166 MkII/Denon DL207/XPS-1; 5-zone Sonos w/Def Tech AW5500's @ deck/pool/master bath & Sony SS-MB105/Polk R10 @ great room & kitchen. Two headphone setups: Hifiberry/BasX A100 and Allo BOSS/Schiit Asgard 2 (each to Senn 600's). PC w/Airmotiv 3b's. Roon user.
I owned the Marantz AV7702 for a bit but I found it very laid back as well compared to my XMC-1 and Sherbourn processors I owned previously and my current Anthem receiver also isn't as laid back as the Marantz was, remember this is my ears my room and we all enjoy a different type of sound, that being said many here though that run the 8800 series say they are different from the 7000 series, is there any way you could demo an XMC-1 or Anthem AVM60. I really love the sound of the Sherbourn PT-7020a and PT-7020C4 as I find them very lively for music it's just they are of course older and don't have the more current HDMI and features the Marantz AV8802 has. I had my PT-7020a connected to a pair of Airmotiv 5 which I enjoyed so much I am moving up to some Airmotiv 6s to better fill my room as I use this setup for strictly 2ch use and no subs and the sound from that combos is so open and alive and exactly how I like it.
You should be able to find a used DC-1 and use that with your XSP-1 which I bet would give you what you are looking for, I have ran a ERC-3 to a XSP-1 before with outstanding results but I change gear a lot so I no longer have this combo and the ERC-3 was a buddies I was just borrowing to try out at the time, he has the XMC-1, XPA-5 Gen2, ERC-3 right now and the sound in his room is great as well and he has acoustic panels and diffusers as well which I would recommend every room to have
Also the L & R channels of the XMC-1 are fully differential balanced outputs to match the XPA-1L's
Last Edit: Oct 14, 2018 11:25:58 GMT -5 by creimes