Rega DAC or Cambridge DacMagic - AVS Forum

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CD Players & Dedicated Music Transports

nbaptista's Avatar nbaptista
04:54 PM Liked: 10
post #1 of 97
07-05-2011 | Posts: 8
Joined: Jul 2011
Hello,
I would like to ask which of these two DAC´s should I buy?There are a Rega and Cambridge house sound?And if there are, what are the adv/disadvantages of Cambridge and Rega?
NeumannU87's Avatar NeumannU87
03:03 AM Liked: 10
post #2 of 97
07-06-2011 | Posts: 5
Joined: Sep 2008
I don't know if it's really fair to compare the two since the Rega is 2X the price.
Everything I have read on the two I believe can be summed up this way. The Cambridge, high resolution, very detailed, upsampled sound.

The Rega, non-upsampled (which isn't a bad thing) more analog like characteristics.
As I'm sure you're aware, it really is a matter of taste and most importantly, how it integrates with the rest of your system.

Hope this helps.
nbaptista's Avatar nbaptista
09:03 AM Liked: 10
post #3 of 97
07-06-2011 | Posts: 8
Joined: Jul 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeumannU87 View Post
more analog like characteristics.

which are...?
centurymantra's Avatar centurymantra
11:34 AM Liked: 11
post #4 of 97
07-06-2011 | Posts: 69
Joined: Apr 2007
I don't know if you have spent much time on this forum, but there is a pretty strong contingency of folks that will tell you that all DACS, CD players, HT processors basically sound the same. As such, a good number of these threads hit a brick wall and/or devolve into epic flame wars revolving around this argument. Even though I don't subscribe to this view, I can appreciate the viewpoint as digital conversion really has matured to a point where the diminishing returns kick in pretty quickly. If you have any way of comparing the two to see for yourself, you could make your own mind up.

That being said, I do own a Rega Apollo CD player and quite like it. I expect the Rega DAC is based on this player. I had a number of digital playback devices in my house prior to this player that were in a similar league/price point - including a pretty decent RME brand AD/DA I used in my home studio, a Denon DVD/SACD/CD player and a Marantz CD changer. Any differences in these pieces is admittedly subtle at best, but the Rega player really does have a different, unique sound that kind of surprised me. This may mean it is not entirely "neutral" and is tailored to fit in with their analog legacy. That being said, I like it. It has a very laid back quality that has grown on me. I don't feel there is any lack of detail or soundstage but find that it has a very laid back yet engaging quality. Ultimately, it replaced the (rather nice) Denon player I had been using.
Vick's Pit's Avatar Vick's Pit
09:44 PM Liked: 10
post #5 of 97
07-11-2011 | Posts: 33
Joined: Dec 2007
I think Neumann said it best with his description. Choosing one should be based somewhat on your system characteristics.

I own the Rega DAC, Music Hall 25.3 DAC and the Musical Fidelity M1 DAC. The Rega is the favorite in my system. I find myself listening to most music with the Rega.

I find the Music Hall probably is the best with poorer recordings and the M1 is the most detailed. Rega is best overall I feel. Not too smooth, but not too detailed where it sounds artificial. It's hard to explain. My dealer let me audition these first, I would recommend the same to see which one gels with your system best.
htcritic's Avatar htcritic
12:17 PM Liked: 11
post #6 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 541
Joined: Aug 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vick's Pit View Post
...the M1 is the most detailed. Rega is best overall I feel. Not too smooth, but not too detailed where it sounds artificial. It's hard to explain. .
I agree that these types of posts usually end up in flame wars. Reason being, ridiculous statements like the one above. FACT: There is no data, study, or test that supports that anybody has EVER been able to differentiate between DACS.

Buy whatever one you want secure in the knowledge that it will sound as good as any other one at any price. Unless of course one is defective.

If anybody can hear a difference between DACS, then one of them is broken.
Djoel's Avatar Djoel
12:50 PM Liked: 210
post #7 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 7,730
Joined: Jul 2006
And there's always someone with a can of gas and a match!
htcritic's Avatar htcritic
02:58 PM Liked: 11
post #8 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 541
Joined: Aug 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by Djoel View Post

And there's always someone with a can of gas and a match!

Too funny!

Actually from my perspective I see it as a colaborative process. The posters that list all the differences in sound they "hear" in DACS are pouring the gas, and I'm the guy with the match.


Djoel's Avatar Djoel
03:14 PM Liked: 210
post #9 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 7,730
Joined: Jul 2006
Quote:
Originally Posted by htcritic View Post

Too funny!

Actually from my perspective I see it as a colaborative process. The posters that list all the differences in sound they "hear" in DACS are pouring the gas, and I'm the guy with the match.


Well that's definitely a way to look at it, glad you see that way Now becareful where you drop that match


Djoel
JorgeLopez11's Avatar JorgeLopez11
06:27 PM Liked: 18
post #10 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 1,890
Joined: Oct 2003
Nowadays DACs are certainly a hot subject.

My POV is usually in agreement with what basic theory and what some DBTs have concluded about the audible differences between DACs. In most situations there's no reason why a good DAC sound would differ from some others simply due to the fact the differences are in most cases inaudible (at least in the domestic typical environment).

So if I was about to buy a new DAC for any reason, I would certainly take a look at the DAC with the best overall specs. Just for mental health

BTW this doesn't mean it is the most expensive. So, accordingly my bet would be the Benchmark DAC.

Nevertheless, there are some other considerations related to subjective appreciations, such as the typical pleasant euphonic tube output. That's why I bought the Music Hall 25.3 DAC. It´s very affordable as well.

But I wouldn't dare to say it is better or worse than other DACs in terms of sonic performance. It's just a matter of taste

Everything else, including those folkloric descriptions about sound characteristics is just poetry
smitty's Avatar smitty
07:25 PM Liked: 11
post #11 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 1,744
Joined: Aug 2000
Quote:
Originally Posted by htcritic View Post

Too funny!

Actually from my perspective I see it as a colaborative process. The posters that list all the differences in sound they "hear" in DACS are pouring the gas, and I'm the guy with the match.

Good analogy. There wouldn't be any flames except for guys like you. And you don't have to light the match, do you? I mean, you could just allow people who have experience with either or both of these DAC's to help the OP, and reserve your comments on all DAC's sounding alike for a thread that directly raises that particular inquiry (and there are many). But you can't help yourself, can you?

I pop into this forum every once in a blue moon just to see if people continue to intrude into, and divert, these simple types of threads with their "agenda." I can see that it's still going on.

Keep trying to suck the joy out of life for others.
mcnarus's Avatar mcnarus
07:33 PM Liked: 327
post #12 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 6,190
Joined: Nov 2007
Quote:


Good analogy. There wouldn't be any flames except for guys like you. And you don't have to light the match, do you? I mean, you could just allow people who have experience with either or both of these DAC's to help the OP.

Wrongheaded advice doesn't help anybody.

Quote:


I pop into this forum every once in a blue moon just to see if people continue to intrude into, and divert, these simple types of threads with their "agenda." I can see that it's still going on.

Keep sucking the joy out of the life.

I apologize for spoiling the fun of people who get their jollies out of wallowing in ignorance.

To the OP: If you really believe that DACs sound different, then you should buy the Rega. It is twice as expensive, and spending more will make you like it more. Otherwise, they're both way overpriced for what they do.
smitty's Avatar smitty
07:56 PM Liked: 11
post #13 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 1,744
Joined: Aug 2000
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcnarus View Post

I apologize for spoiling the fun of people who get their jollies out of wallowing in ignorance.

You should apologize. What concern is it of yours if some people believe that DAC's sound different, even if they are wrong? And why does it offend you so much if some people want to compare DAC's or CD players and talk about sound differences? If someone wants to spend more money on a CD player that is more expensive because they think it sounds better, why do you care -- even assuming arguendo that their belief is based on ignorance? If they are happier buying X DAC instead of Y DAC, because they think it sounds better -- even if it's more expensive and the sound difference doesn't justify the cost -- so what? They are happier.

Again, there is a time and a place to discuss these issues. If someone starts a thread and asks for a debate on whether different DAC's sound different, have at it. Knock yourself out and demonstrate your brilliance to everyone. But in a thread like this (and lots of others I've seen), there's no reason to intrude with your agenda. But you and others can't help yourselves, for reasons that probably have more to do with maturity than anything else.
mcnarus's Avatar mcnarus
09:00 PM Liked: 327
post #14 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 6,190
Joined: Nov 2007
Quote:


You should apologize. What business is it of yours if some people believe that DAC's sound different, even if they are wrong? And why does it offend you so much if some people want to compare DAC's or CD players and talk about sound differences? If someone wants to spend more money on a CD player that is more expensive because they think it sounds better, why do you care -- even assuming arguendo that their belief is based on ignorance? If they are happier buying X DAC instead of Y DAC, because they think it sounds better -- even if it's more expensive and the sound difference doesn't justify the cost -- so what? They are happier.

I don't care what you or anyone else buys. I do care when ignoramuses parading as "experts" tell people what to buy, and then throw a hissy fit if someone contradicts them. Grow up.

The OP may well agree with you that DACs sound different. But he certainly hasn't said so yet. I'd say he's exhibited a certain amount of skepticism, or at least open-mindedness, on the question so far. Your presumption that he is as uninterested in alternative points of view as you are is exactly that—presumptuous.

Quote:


Again, there is a time and a place to discuss these issues. If someone starts a thread and asks for a debate on whether different DAC's sound different, have at it. Knock yourself out and demonstrate your brilliance to everyone. But in a thread like this (and lots of others I've seen), there's no reason to intrude with your agenda.

I see. You have an opinion and I have an agenda. Of course, you haven't offered a bit of direct advice to the OP yet. All you've done is bitch about the advice offered by other people. So who's using the thread as his soapbox?

Quote:


But you and others can't help yourselves, for reasons that probably have more to do with maturity than anything else.

Physician, heal thyself.
diomania's Avatar diomania
09:02 PM Liked: 49
post #15 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 1,389
Joined: Dec 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty View Post

Again, there is a time and a place to discuss these issues. If someone starts a thread and asks for a debate on whether different DAC's sound different, have at it. Knock yourself out and demonstrate your brilliance to everyone. But in a thread like this (and lots of others I've seen), there's no reason to intrude with your agenda. But you and others can't help yourselves, for reasons that probably have more to do with maturity than anything else.

That's how things are on this forum. Can't you just accept it for what it is (AV Science)? There are forums with different atmosphere all over the internet for you to choose from. Why you are complaining or trying to change the way things are is beyond me.
smitty's Avatar smitty
09:26 PM Liked: 11
post #16 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 1,744
Joined: Aug 2000
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcnarus View Post

I don't care what you or anyone else buys. I do care when ignoramuses parading as "experts" tell people what to buy, and then throw a hissy fit if someone contradicts them. Grow up.

Who needs to grow up? You've got what, almost 3,800 posts on this forum. I'll bet at least 75% of them, or close to 3,000 posts, advance your "everything (except speakers) sounds the same," "audiophiles are idiots," etc. agenda. That demonstrates a real obsession on appearing intelligent and demonstrating that others who don't agree with your dogma are foolish. Indeed, that is IMO a primary motivation of quite a few of your ilk. It's obviously a situation involving ego. I agree, you don't really care about what anyone else buys. It's much more deep-seated than that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcnarus View Post

I see. You have an opinion and I have an agenda.

I have an opinion, but I don't think anyone who disagrees with me is an idiot. I don't think you or anyone else on this thread is an idiot because your opinion is that all DAC's sound the same. But you think those who don't agree with you are complete fools.

In addition, a review of your posts demonstrates that you spend an inordinate number of posts badgering everyone with your point of view. That's the difference between an opinion and an agenda.
smitty's Avatar smitty
09:27 PM Liked: 11
post #17 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 1,744
Joined: Aug 2000
Quote:
Originally Posted by diomania View Post

That's how things are on this forum. Can't you just accept it for what it is (AV Science)? There are forums with different atmosphere all over the internet for you to choose from. Why you are complaining or trying to change the way things are is beyond me.

The fact that "science" is in the name of the forum is not a license to bombard every thread with the "everything sounds the same" agenda, regardless of the nature of the thread. That's just silly.

But in a larger sense, you're right. Look, sometimes you go to a neighborhood restaurant, and there is a group of loud and boisterous people who regularly dine there, and it interferes with nice people from the neighborhood enjoying the restaurant, so you don't go there for awhile. And then maybe you pop back in every six months or so to see if the obnoxious people are still there. If they are, you dine elsewhere. Eventually, maybe the obnoxious folks move away or find other restaurant, and people from the neighborhood start visiting again.

So I'll check back again in six months or so. I know a few others do this too (they've emailed or PM'ed me in the past). Ta ta.
diomania's Avatar diomania
10:02 PM Liked: 49
post #18 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 1,389
Joined: Dec 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty View Post

But you think those who don't agree with you are complete fools.

Isn't it foolish to ignore the facts? As for what the fact is, we could discuss that separately.

Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty View Post

The fact that "science" is in the name of the forum is not a license to bombard every thread with the "everything sounds the same" agenda, regardless of the nature of the thread. That's just silly.

It's silly to use such strawman argument.

Quote:


But in a larger sense, you're right. Look, sometimes you go to a neighborhood restaurant, and there is a group of loud and boisterous people who regularly dine there, and it interferes with nice people from the neighborhood enjoying the restaurant, so you don't go there for awhile. And then maybe you pop back in every six months or so to see if the obnoxious people are still there. If they are, you dine elsewhere. Eventually, maybe the obnoxious folks move away or find other restaurant, and people from the neighborhood start visiting again.

So I'll check back again in six months or so. I know a few others do this too (they've emailed or PM'ed me in the past). Ta ta.

What's wrong with just peeking and then moving on if you don't like what you see? You've done more than just peeking by the way.
smitty's Avatar smitty
10:15 PM Liked: 11
post #19 of 97
07-13-2011 | Posts: 1,744
Joined: Aug 2000
Quote:
Originally Posted by diomania View Post

What's wrong with just peeking and then moving on if you don't like what you see? You've done more than just peeking by the way.

You're right again. I have in fact peeked in from time to time, and then just moved on. Something about this particular thread set me off for some reason, or maybe I was just feeling ornery today.

Oh well. I return you to your regularly scheduled program: "Why You Should Listen When A Bunch Of People You Don't Know Anything About Tell You What You Can And Cannot Hear Based On Some Stuff They Read On The Internet About Tests Taken By People They Don't Know And Without Actual Experience With The Prodducts In Question."
nbaptista's Avatar nbaptista
04:21 AM Liked: 10
post #20 of 97
07-14-2011 | Posts: 8
Joined: Jul 2011
the feedback of Rega Dac´s owners say that the Rega sounds more natural or organic!
mcnarus's Avatar mcnarus
07:17 AM Liked: 327
post #21 of 97
07-14-2011 | Posts: 6,190
Joined: Nov 2007
Quote:


the feedback of Rega Dac´s owners say that the Rega sounds more natural or organic!

I think that says more about the owners than the DACs.
htcritic's Avatar htcritic
07:50 AM Liked: 11
post #22 of 97
07-14-2011 | Posts: 541
Joined: Aug 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty View Post

Good analogy. There wouldn't be any flames except for guys like you. And you don't have to light the match, do you? I mean, you could just allow people who have experience with either or both of these DAC's to help the OP, and reserve your comments on all DAC's sounding alike for a thread that directly raises that particular inquiry (and there are many). But you can't help yourself, can you?

I pop into this forum every once in a blue moon just to see if people continue to intrude into, and divert, these simple types of threads with their "agenda." I can see that it's still going on.

Keep trying to suck the joy out of life for others.

Since this was in response to my post, I'll comment.

I won't respond to your personal insults and assumptions, in kind. No reason to. I attacked the post, not the poster. Some here may want to think about that. I don't care what anybody buys. I don't care what anybody says without evidence to substantiate it. I don't have an agenda. And I never said, ever, anywhere, that all DACS sound the same. I've said and will probably say again that nobody has ever been able to differentiate between DACS in any unsighted test. That's a fact. Based on that fact, and others, it fairly clear that "if you can hear a difference between DACS then one of them is broken" That is not the same as saying they sound the same. It's the same as saying, if they do sound different, those differences are so slight that not a single human being has ever been able to consistantly tell them apart in any unsighted test.
RUR's Avatar RUR
09:33 AM Liked: 77
post #23 of 97
07-14-2011 | Posts: 2,384
Joined: Feb 2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by Djoel View Post

And there's always someone with a can of gas and a match!

and it's always the same 3-4 someones.
Vick's Pit's Avatar Vick's Pit
09:37 AM Liked: 10
post #24 of 97
07-14-2011 | Posts: 33
Joined: Dec 2007
htcritic, nothing about my statement was aimed at being ridiculous. If you go back and actually read my post I use words like "I find" and "probably". I even go on to say that it's about one's system synergy and how these items fit into ones particular system. I said try to audition the Dac's to see for themselves.

I'm no audiophile and don't claim to be, but I can def tell a difference in sound between those dac. It's just my opinion, not ridiculous statements. Even when I have some of my friends over and switch between the dac's they have made comments about the sound changing. These are from many different people. Yet they notice a change?

Audio to me is about having fun with it and trying different pieces of equipment in a system to get to the type of sound one wants. These DAC's are all nice pieces of eq "in my opinion" that have helped me achieve that goal.
smitty's Avatar smitty
10:46 AM Liked: 11
post #25 of 97
07-14-2011 | Posts: 1,744
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Quote:
Originally Posted by htcritic View Post

Since this was in response to my post, I'll comment.

I won't respond to your personal insults and assumptions, in kind. No reason to. I attacked the post, not the poster.

I also was intending to attack the post, and not the poster, and the "you" in my initial post was really intended to refer to a group of people. I apologize for any comments that appear to insult you personally. I didn't intend that.
diomania's Avatar diomania
11:22 AM Liked: 49
post #26 of 97
07-14-2011 | Posts: 1,389
Joined: Dec 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vick's Pit View Post

htcritic, nothing about my statement was aimed at being ridiculous. If you go back and actually read my post I use words like "I find" and "probably". I even go on to say that it's about one's system synergy and how these items fit into ones particular system. I said try to audition the Dac's to see for themselves.

I'm no audiophile and don't claim to be, but I can def tell a difference in sound between those dac. It's just my opinion, not ridiculous statements. Even when I have some of my friends over and switch between the dac's they have made comments about the sound changing. These are from many different people. Yet they notice a change?

Did you ensure that both sources were playing at same volume?
htcritic's Avatar htcritic
01:40 PM Liked: 11
post #27 of 97
07-14-2011 | Posts: 541
Joined: Aug 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty View Post

I also was intending to attack the post, and not the poster, and the "you" in my initial post was really intended to refer to a group of people. I apologize for any comments that appear to insult you personally. I didn't intend that.


I'll take you at your word and accept your apology. But you can see why I would tend to take this as a personal insult, right:


"...There wouldn't be any flames except for guys like you..."

"...But you can't help yourself, can you?..."

"...Keep trying to suck the joy out of life for others..."

Dick Diablo's Avatar Dick Diablo
01:08 PM Liked: 10
post #28 of 97
07-22-2011 | Posts: 76
Joined: Jun 2002
Jeez, I still check into this forum from time to time and thought these useless flame wars would've died down a bit by now, but no.

This is obviously not the place for a discussion of 2 ch music reproduction. It seems best price and constant blathering about the mostly useless abundant new features that you see constantly discussed in the AVR and TV forums are the only acceptable topics of discussion in this place these days.
Jinjuku's Avatar Jinjuku
01:43 PM Liked: 118
post #29 of 97
07-22-2011 | Posts: 2,304
Joined: Mar 2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty View Post


I have an opinion, but I don't think anyone who disagrees with me is an idiot. I don't think you or anyone else on this thread is an idiot because your opinion is that all DAC's sound the same. But you think those who don't agree with you are complete fools.

I think a more relevant issue is someone walking out of the room for 5 minutes across 10-15 intervals where the level matched DAC's are swapped randomly and picking the one they brought along as their preference.

The other issue is that the correlation seems to be $$=Better SQ. No matter if it is Amps, Cables, what have you.

I have an EMU 1212M PCIe sound card. I would like someone to walk in cold listen 10 times with a 3-5 minute interval to this and a Benchmark DAC 1 at random and tell me which is which each time. * Now I'm working up to a point with this if the standard holds and the typical subjetivist type remarks come out.
tesseract67's Avatar tesseract67
03:25 PM Liked: 15
post #30 of 97
07-22-2011 | Posts: 2,507
Joined: Nov 2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by diomania View Post

That's how things are on this forum. Can't you just accept it for what it is (AV Science)? There are forums with different atmosphere all over the internet for you to choose from. Why you are complaining or trying to change the way things are is beyond me.

Ah, the ubiquitous roll eyes. You lend too much weight to what is merely a name. I've said this before. This place was never meant to be, nor is it now, a bastion of science.

Lighten up, guys. Or we might have to rename it the Audio Video SKEPTICAL forum.

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