I have completed my tests. This was limited because I do not have a lot of time so it was Diana Krall Love Scenes.
RDC7: Integra RDC7 Preamp in direct mode.
XMLM: X-Meridian with LM4562 OpAmps
XMST: X-Meridian with Stock OpAmps
X-FI: X-FI Xtreme Music
Midrange and high Frequency:
Mid and Low Frequency:
These comments are about my system and personal preferences so I can understand why others may get a different result. Perhaps there are aspects about the input that the RDC7 just works better with one than that other.
So for me, I will keep the X-FI and sell or return the X-Meridian for the following reasons:
- Better low end performance and resolution is better for HD movies which will be its primary job.
- None of the cards can match the clear vocals, detail, and natural sound of the RDC7.
- I found a way to get DVD-Audio playback working by setting the Creative DVD-A player to have an affinity for CPU0. Apparently, it is a blue-screen-of-death generator on any Multi-cpu or core system.
I think these are all good cards and you mileage may vary.
Oppo UPD-205 | Sonica DAC | BDP-105D | HA-1 | PM-1 | Emotiva XMC-1 | ATI Signature AT6002 x 2 + AT6006 | Revel Salon2s, Voice2, Studio2s | Velodyne HGS-15 | LG 65C7 | Lumagen 2020