USB1543 DAC - Review #2

David Dlugos of also a Moderator

This is a product i could live with -- as is. I am very tempted to plunk down my money, as this and a PowerBook found in the trash is the best digital replay i've had in my house (and i've had some big buck ones). True plug-n-play (not the case with my buddy who tried it on a PC running windows -- this DAC is an excuse to go out and buy a Mac)

Yet one wonders how much better it could be with some fairly straightforward mods. Poly coupling caps in the DACs output can be installed and make a huge improvement, but with no room on the board it is a bit of a rube goldberg install. I would have liked to listen without the opamp buffer, one can only speculate how much it --- and its rudimentary PS regulation -- are subtracting from the performance. Similarily there is room for improvement in the DAC power supply.

And if one wanted to go to town... how much better it could be with a better DAC chip (probably at a big increase in cost) since -- i am told by someone who knows how to read them -- that the specs for the 1543 give it an effective 12 bit resolution. One can only wonder how much better it would be with the full 16 bits, because as is it is damn (can i say that) good.