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Author Topic: ISO: USB DAC/Headphone Amp/Monitor Controler  (Read 2694 times)

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Offline airbladder

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ISO: USB DAC/Headphone Amp/Monitor Controler
« on: March 31, 2012, 11:21:48 PM »
I am looking for a USB DAC/headphone amp/monitor controler.  I would like to go USB from my computer, have a volume knob, headphone out, and xlr out into my active near-field monitors.  I want to switch between the monitor out and headphone out and have some way to control the volume of both.  Originally I was thinking about getting a USBPre2 because I could also use it in the field.  If this had a USB DAC it would be exactly what I am looking for: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/825429-REG/SM_Pro_Audio_M_PATCH_2_M_PATCH_2_Passive_Stereo.html

 

I am looking for options in the 600 or less range.  There is the option of getting a cheep usb dac and combining it with a monitor controler but I would like to get an all in one box.  Rite now I have Roalnd DS50A monitors and AKG 271 headphones.  Any ideas would be great. 
Microphones: Neumann U89i, Neumann KMR 82i, Neumann AK40/50>LC3>KM100.
Pres: AETA PSP-3
Decks: Zoom F8, Sony PCM-M10, Microtrack

Offline DigiGal

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Re: ISO: USB DAC/Headphone Amp/Monitor Controler
« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2012, 12:21:34 AM »
I'm currently deciding between an Apogee Duet 2, Grace m903 or a Benchmark DAC 1 for the same task.  Neither the Duet 2 or m903 have XLR outputs but both do have balanced outputs on TRS which is still very workable.

Leaning more toward the Apogee Duet 2 at the moment for its price/performance ratio.  It could fit your needs and budget very nicely too unless you're not on a mac.

Had briefly considered the Sound Devices USB Pre2 but ultimately ruled it out.



« Last Edit: April 01, 2012, 11:04:12 AM by DigiGal »
Mics: AKG CK91/CK94/CK98/SE300 | Shure VP88 | Senn ME66/K6/K6RD Cables: Gotham GAC-4/1 "StarQuad" w/Neutrik EMC | Gotham GAC-2pair w/AKG MK90/3 connectors | DigiGal AES>S/PDIF cable Preamp: Sound Devices MixPre-D Recorder: Marantz PMD 661 Edit: 27"3.4GHz QuadCore i7 iMac | OS X Yosemite 10.10.5 | Wave Editor | xACT  | Transmission | Final Cut Pro X                                                            

Offline boyacrobat

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Re: ISO: USB DAC/Headphone Amp/Monitor Controler
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2012, 12:54:44 AM »
centrance dacmini

800  900 range maby cheaper
listen if you can
wow all over

g

Offline airbladder

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Re: ISO: USB DAC/Headphone Amp/Monitor Controler
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2012, 12:02:18 PM »
I use a pc.  :-\
Microphones: Neumann U89i, Neumann KMR 82i, Neumann AK40/50>LC3>KM100.
Pres: AETA PSP-3
Decks: Zoom F8, Sony PCM-M10, Microtrack

Offline kindms

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Re: ISO: USB DAC/Headphone Amp/Monitor Controler
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2012, 03:59:24 PM »
I use a pc.  :-\

the www.audio-gd.com folks have some things that might interest you. They have a few with balanced XLR out etc.
AKG414 XLS/ST> TCM-Mod Tascam HDP2
Musichall Mambo > VR-2's

Offline DigiGal

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Re: ISO: USB DAC/Headphone Amp/Monitor Controler
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2012, 06:48:40 PM »
I use a pc.  :-\

You stated you are looking for USB input but if you have a digital output from your computer then tc electronic bmc-2 [DAC and monitor controller] could work for you within budget.  It is surprising they don't include either a USB or firewire input on this device though probably due for a product refresh.

RME's babyface also has a similar form factor but is over your budget. 

While not really a monitor controller Propellerhead Balance is another similar cross platform option that is under budget.  For a different form factor maybe an Avid MBOX could work, it's lower quality and offers less monitor control functions but it's under budget and offers USB input. 

Looking through the new Full Compass catalog today saw a new product: Steinberg UR28M USB Audio Interface.

Can't really endorse any of these merely presenting some options that might work for your setup, good luck with your search.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2012, 08:52:23 PM by DigiGal »
Mics: AKG CK91/CK94/CK98/SE300 | Shure VP88 | Senn ME66/K6/K6RD Cables: Gotham GAC-4/1 "StarQuad" w/Neutrik EMC | Gotham GAC-2pair w/AKG MK90/3 connectors | DigiGal AES>S/PDIF cable Preamp: Sound Devices MixPre-D Recorder: Marantz PMD 661 Edit: 27"3.4GHz QuadCore i7 iMac | OS X Yosemite 10.10.5 | Wave Editor | xACT  | Transmission | Final Cut Pro X                                                            

Offline boyacrobat

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Re: ISO: USB DAC/Headphone Amp/Monitor Controler
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2012, 04:34:35 AM »
dacmini s strong point is pc/usb
plus you can ask mike to mod it for how you want it done
its jitter measurments are admirable very admirable
headphone amp section stellar
a beast for its price

g

Offline airbladder

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Re: ISO: USB DAC/Headphone Amp/Monitor Controler
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2012, 07:35:12 AM »
The dac mini looks nice.  It would need to be modified for the volume knob to also control the monitor out.  I have a zero dac that does exactly what I need; however, has been acting up lately.  I hooked it up again last night and now it works fine, go figure.  It's not the best sounding box for headphones and I need to do some testing to see how it sounds through my monitors.  Thanks for all the info and keep it coming.
Microphones: Neumann U89i, Neumann KMR 82i, Neumann AK40/50>LC3>KM100.
Pres: AETA PSP-3
Decks: Zoom F8, Sony PCM-M10, Microtrack

 

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