RCA with Amp vs Optical - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 05-15-2014, 02:19 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi Guys,

 

I just had a quick question about my current audio set up.

 

I am currently running an Asus Xonar ST card via optical cable to my HK AVR745 receiver which then powers my Mirsch speakers.

 

I recently purchased a Matrix M-Stage to power my new AKG K712s and noticed I can use it as a pre-amp.

 

Would I theoretically get better sound (for my speakers) running the sound card via RCA to the M-Stage and then again (via RCA) to the receiver or would the digital (optical) output from the sound card straight to the receiver trump this setup?

 

Thanks for your thoughts.

 

Min.

 

P.S. Sorry if this is in the wrong thread.

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post #2 of 5 Old 05-15-2014, 03:48 AM
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I'll assume your receiver has a S/PDIF out (most do). For easy of setup and to element analog connection problems, also not knowing if or which D/A converter is the best, I would hookup this way.

S/PDIF out on the sound card to the receiver, then S/PDIF out on the receiver to the headphone pre-amp.
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post #3 of 5 Old 05-15-2014, 03:56 AM - Thread Starter
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Hey mate,

 

Firstly, thanks for the response.

 

Much appreciated.

 

From what I understand, the DAC on the sound card is meant to be pretty top end and unfortunately the headphone pre-amp doesn't have an optical input so I think the best option would be to just use the double RCA cable.

 

Quick question, would the fact that I am using an RCA cable to attach to the AVR mean that it will be going through another DAC on the receiver's side as well?

 

I understand this situation isn't ideal but unfortunately because of my budget, it is what it is.

 

Min.

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post #4 of 5 Old 05-15-2014, 04:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Oh and I think I just understood your workaround.

 

I definitely feel that the DAC on the sound card is better than the AVR so I will be using the sound card straight to the amp via RCA for the headphones.

 

My question was more if whether there would be any benefit for the speakers plugged into the AVR if I used the RCA out on the headphone amps to the receiver instead of just a straight optical cable to the AVR to the speakers from the sound card.

 

 

Sound card --> headphone amp --> AVR --> speakers all via RCA

 

vs

 

Sound card --> AVR --> speakers on the AVR via SPDIF.

 

Cheers.

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post #5 of 5 Old 05-15-2014, 11:07 AM
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Try it and see which you prefer.

I would think you can run both connections simultaneously and switch back and forth at the AVR to determine your preference.

Your results, if posted here, will lead to discussions about level matching and blind testing and so on.

Then somebody will object to something somebody else says, a piss match will occur, and the OPs will close the thread.

You, meanwhile, will have found the configuration you prefer.
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