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View Full Version : How much difference does DAC converter make?



Jack Bauer
08-04-2005, 03:36 PM
How much better would the Pioneer 8600mp be with 24 bit DAC as opposed to say a high end alpine deck in terms of sound quality? Thanks, have to make a decision very soon.

04hemiboy
08-04-2005, 03:50 PM
I was just basically in the same boat as you.It was either the Premier 860mp or Alpine 9855. The Premier one has 6.5 Volts preout and a 2 year warranty difference to the Pioneer 8600mp. I went with the Alpine had alot better quality feel to it and it is from the 2nd batch this year.I know the first batch had problems.As for the DAC unless your a REALLY audio nut there isn't that much of a difference same goes as the hype about Preouts 2v 4v 6v. I found the Pioneer one a little to plasticy(if that's a word) feeling. But either way you can't go wrong with either deck when it's on the high end of their products.

04hemiboy
08-04-2005, 03:52 PM
Oh by the way the Alpine 9855 SQ is absolutely FANTASTIC.

Jack Bauer
08-04-2005, 03:58 PM
Alright I think you've just convinced me, I like the look of the Alpine better too. The only thing I'd miss in the Alpine is the auto time align which the pioneer has, Alpines is manual and I'm not sure how good I'd be at finding the right spot manually.

squeak9798
08-04-2005, 04:05 PM
You can't look at just the DAC and make any valid judgments about one being better than the other. You have too look at the entire design of the unit, not just a single entity.

Mr. Opportunist
08-04-2005, 04:09 PM
i had the same decision to make i hated the ghey glide touch it doesnt always respond well atleast with every unit i tried and i found it basically pointless so i went with the 860mp and i love it.

Jack Bauer
08-04-2005, 04:14 PM
You can't look at just the DAC and make any valid judgments about one being better than the other. You have too look at the entire design of the unit, not just a single entity.

Fair enough. I have looked at everything else but this was the issue that I wasn't sure about is all. Do you have any suggestions?

JLCivic
08-04-2005, 04:56 PM
I would never just equate DACs with how good a deck will sound. I have used this example about a bazillion times:

I have heard an entry level dual 1 bit eclipse clearly sounded better than a 24 bit clarion costing nearly 2x as much. IMO, if you are really interested in great sounding decks, you would be shortchanging yourself if you did not atleast check out Eclipse decks(assuming you have access to them), IMO.

Jack Bauer
08-04-2005, 05:40 PM
What makes the Eclipse decks better do you think?

JLCivic
08-04-2005, 06:05 PM
What makes the Eclipse decks better do you think?

I am not sure. I think it is probably a combination of:

quality of the design
quality of the componentry
quality of the pre outs(NOT just the voltage)

Eclipse has just historically sounded better to my ears than other decks out there(until I bought the 8250).

Your ears may tell you differently, of course.

Justintoxicated
08-04-2005, 07:02 PM
I am not sure. I think it is probably a combination of:

quality of the design
quality of the componentry
quality of the pre outs(NOT just the voltage)

Eclipse has just historically sounded better to my ears than other decks out there(until I bought the 8250).

Your ears may tell you differently, of course.

I agree, Alpines have sounded pretty good in the past too but I don't trust their new ones.

I have not been to impressed with kenwood excelons but I have not heard their new ones everyone is raving about either.

JonJT
08-04-2005, 08:06 PM
I would never just equate DACs with how good a deck will sound. I have used this example about a bazillion times:

I have heard an entry level dual 1 bit eclipse clearly sounded better than a 24 bit clarion costing nearly 2x as much. IMO, if you are really interested in great sounding decks, you would be shortchanging yourself if you did not atleast check out Eclipse decks(assuming you have access to them), IMO.
There are too many factors at play in a car to say that one deck sounds better than the other unless you switched out one deck for another in the same car. Did you do that? If the 2 decks were in 2 different cars, then I would be skeptical. Car accoustics, install quality, etc play too large a roll.

JLCivic
08-04-2005, 08:14 PM
There are too many factors at play in a car to say that one deck sounds better than the other unless you switched out one deck for another in the same car. Did you do that? If the 2 decks were in 2 different cars, then I would be skeptical. Car accoustics, install quality, etc play too large a roll.
Those 2 decks were in the soundboard right next to each other, both set flat.

If you want an example of decks in the same car, then I can do that too.

I ran a clarion 835mp for a few months(nice deck), but it did nto sound nearly as good as my previous deck(eclipse cd8051..which I had sold). We tweaked it as much as we could in my car. Pulled it out and dropped in an eclipse cd8053. With everything set flat(no eq, no xover, no t/a used, nothing), the system clearly sounded better to me(and to the 3 other guys standing there who own/work for the shop).

JonJT
08-04-2005, 11:23 PM
Alrighty then, Eclipse>Clarion

99StangGt
08-04-2005, 11:47 PM
I like my clarion DRZ9255 better then my Eclipse 8454. I think alot has to do with person taste of sound. The highest model Alpine i had was a 9831 then i went to Eclipse 8454 liked the eclipse better. Then went to a 860mp didnt like as well as the eclipse then to the clarion.

JLCivic
08-05-2005, 07:25 AM
I like my clarion DRZ9255 better then my Eclipse 8454. I think alot has to do with person taste of sound. The highest model Alpine i had was a 9831 then i went to Eclipse 8454 liked the eclipse better. Then went to a 860mp didnt like as well as the eclipse then to the clarion.

For what it costs, it certainly SHOULD sound better than an 8454. Money permitting, I may try a 9255 at some point. I do really love the sound I get with the 8250 though.

I have often wondered how nice a $1200 Eclipse might sound.

adam71
08-05-2005, 09:45 AM
For what it costs, it certainly SHOULD sound better than an 8454. Money permitting,

Yeah, comparing the 9255 to any other deck mentioned in this thread is like comparing apples to oranges. :)



I do really love the sound I get with the 8250 though.

I'm sure you do, Denon surely makes some really nice stuff.



I have often wondered how nice a $1200 Eclipse might sound.

I doubt you'll ever know if you ask me. I don't see it happening. But as always, I could be wrong.

JLCivic
08-05-2005, 09:48 AM
Yeah, comparing the 9255 to any other deck mentioned in this thread is like comparing apples to oranges. :)




I'm sure you do, Denon surely makes some really nice stuff.




I doubt you'll ever know if you ask me. I don't see it happening. But as always, I could be wrong.

I don't think it will happen either, but given what Clarion and even Alpine have spent on the HIGH high end, I would like to see what Eclipse could come up with in the same price range. :D

99StangGt
08-05-2005, 10:18 AM
IM sure the 8250 sounds as good or better then the 9255. I was torn between the 2 then went with the 9255 for the processing. I love the 4-way active crossover. Plus I got a good deal for the deck at 450 shipped. I liked all my eclipse decks also. I have always been an Eclipse person, have had 4 decks and like 6 of their amps

squeak9798
08-05-2005, 10:23 AM
I have often wondered how nice a $1200 Eclipse might sound.
I doubt you'll ever know if you ask me. I don't see it happening. But as always, I could be wrong.

It's very easy to find out what at $1200 Eclipse sounds like.

Go over to Japan and pick up an Eclipse Sound Monitor ;) Smidgen over $1200 though (around $1400-$1600 in US Dollars). That's the good stuff they don't give us here in the States.

http://www.fujitsu-ten.co.jp/

JLCivic
08-05-2005, 10:31 AM
It's very easy to find out what at $1200 Eclipse sounds like.

Go over to Japan and pick up an Eclipse Sound Monitor ;) Smidgen over $1200 though (around $1400-$1600 in US Dollars). That's the good stuff they don't give us here in the States.

http://www.fujitsu-ten.co.jp/

Yes I am aware of the sound monitor, but I don't think I will be in Japan anytime soon.

JLCivic
08-05-2005, 10:32 AM
IM sure the 8250 sounds as good or better then the 9255. I was torn between the 2 then went with the 9255 for the processing. I love the 4-way active crossover. Plus I got a good deal for the deck at 450 shipped. I liked all my eclipse decks also. I have always been an Eclipse person, have had 4 decks and like 6 of their amps

How did you get such an insane deal on the 9255? Was it new? I have connections with the local shop, and that is WAY under what I could get it for(and $450 is WAY under dealer cost).

I did get a ridiculous deal on the 8250, so I am not complaining.

99StangGt
08-05-2005, 10:48 AM
I got mine off ebay used but it was in perfect condition. The guy had it listed in the electronic gadgets area so i emailed him for a buy it now price and he sold it to me for that price, I also got his A/D/S PQ40.2 for 150. Best price i have heard about for a new 9255 is 750. I think it was on sound domain, also seen new ones for that price on ebay

JLCivic
08-05-2005, 10:55 AM
I got mine off ebay used but it was in perfect condition. The guy had it listed in the electronic gadgets area so i emailed him for a buy it now price and he sold it to me for that price, I also got his A/D/S PQ40.2 for 150. Best price i have heard about for a new 9255 is 750. I think it was on sound domain, also seen new ones for that price on ebay


SD is showing the 9255 at $1199 which is MAP. I don't know if they would price match it or not(I doubt it since they only price match authorized dealers, afaik).

I can't believe a guy bought a 9255 and then dumped for probably half price AT most on ebay. His loss is your gain. I hope it wasn't stolen. DId you get the box, manual, etc?

99StangGt
08-05-2005, 11:03 AM
That is what was missing was the box and manual. he is an older guy with great feedback. I have heard that some people did get those decks of SD for some kind of price match.

99StangGt
08-05-2005, 11:06 AM
I did get the remote still wraped up and the main wire that ran from the converter to his battery with the fuse holder, if he stole it then he worked hard to get all the parts, lol