Originally Posted by Nuance
In my opinion the preamp and DAC make the biggest difference in sound (after the speakers and room, of course). To each their own, though.
Are there any high quality preamps out there that run Audyssey MultiEQ XT32? I don't think I'd want to run my system without it... I know a lot of people do so, but I really like the room correction (I do have some room treatments, but I don't really know what I'm doing with them... have tamed some of the room's liveness, but probably not ideally set up).
I run basically all my media off an HTPC.
Once I get my SS8s in, my setup is going to have:
- HDMI out from computer (so NVidia driver) into Denon 4311CI
- Denon preouts to W4S MC3X500 (fronts & center)
- Denon speaker-level outs for rears & surrounds
I listen to music in stereo only.
If I want to daydream about improving further (my wife would not be happy with me spending more money right now, but maybe in the future), would I instead have something like:
- Some output from built-in soundcard (or would there be any benefit to a separate? I am using the built-in Asus P6X58D-E soundcard) to a DAC
- HDMI to my receiver for video
- DAC into a preamp. If its a stereo DAC, not sure how that would work when I want to watch 5.1/7.1 movies... maybe run my receiver's digital out into the preamp and let the preamp use its own DAC for movies... or get a 7 channel external DAC, though I'd still have issues with my PS3, XBox 360, and cable box)
- pre-amp into amp... I don't think I'd be able to use my Denon to power the 4 surround/rear speakers anymore though... not sure if there is a way to get it to pass video and also amplify some analog inputs. So I'd probably need a second amp for the 4 rears/surrounds
I assume there could be issues with video sync (if going through one chain for sound, another for video), though the Denon does have an adjustable delay (only helpful if the audio is ahead of video.. vice versa and would have to find a way to delay the preamp)
Also, I wouldn't want to give up Audyssey MultiEQ XT32... looking at the audyssey website I see a couple of preamps that have it, but I have no idea if they are high quality or not.
EDIT: Thought of another question: In order to use MultiEQ XT32, the preamp would have to take the DAC signal and digitize it, right? So... there would be no point to an external DAC if I want Audyssey?
(Should I be discussing this in the preamp forum?)Edited by Morik - 11/9/12 at 9:13am