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  1. #1
    Sophomore Member Bear's Avatar
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    Wyred 4 Sound uDAC

    Interested to hear if anyone has one yet and impressions. Ordered one to set up a headphone system in bedroom. Its dimunitive size and being USB powered makes it a truly portable DAC so can't wait to see what it can do.

  2. #2

    uDac

    Just found out my uDac was shipped today. Same dac as in the mini-int unit. The server is still 2-3 weeks away. Going to use mine at work with a set of powered Quads.

  3. #3
    Sophomore Member Bear's Avatar
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    Getting mine Monday!

    Setting up with Wadia iTransport and Schiit headphone amp.

  4. #4
    Freshman Member autoformer's Avatar
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    uDAC Impressions

    I received mine a couple of weeks ago and am using it in my family room. Here are some quick and subjective impressions.

    Amplifier: Decware Zen Torii Mk III
    Speakers: Zu Omen
    Sub: REL Britannia 3
    Source: MacBook Air 13" running Decibel and iTunes

    I compared the uDAC to a few other DACs I have hanging around here, including:

    Wavelength Brick
    Wavelength Proton
    Wyred4Sound DAC2
    Benchmark DAC1 USB
    PS Audio Digital Link III (with Halide Bridge)
    Musical Fidelity V-DAC (with V-Link)

    Of all these, the one that sounds the most similar to my ears is the PS Audio DLIII. Maybe I'm a tin ear who can't tell a 2006-era DAC from one designed in 2011, but I don't think I could tell them apart blindfolded. DLIII still seems to be a very good sounding DAC that must have been ahead of its time when first introduced.

    Between uDAC and V-DAC, there is no comparison. The soundstage is audibly and very obviously more expansive with the uDAC, highs are more extended, and bass more powerful. uDAC conveys loads more detail and midrange energy. Wyred DAC2 also shares these characteristics, which is not surprising, given their respective lineages. DAC2 conveys more fine detail and has an overall more refined sound. DAC2 seems a little "laid back" in comparison to the uDAC, especially in the midrange.

    The uDAC sounds better to me than the Benchmark, but the Benchmark still has a certain energy in the midrange that I find very exciting. I have always liked the Benchmark for vocals. uDAC seems to have better extension on the extremes than the DAC1

    The uDAC has a very different sound from the Wavelength Brick. Highs and lows are more extended with the uDAC, which sounds a little artificial compared to the Brick's natural, balanced presentation. Wavelength Proton is, in my view, even better than the Brick, with a very detailed high end that is not at all fatiguing. My only gripe with the Proton is its relatively low output signal.

    Bottom line is that the uDAC is a very nice sounding DAC that is an amazing value for the money. The form factor is a big plus for me, since the new Decware Zen Torii takes up so much room on my shelf, that there's no space left for even a DAC as compact as the Benchmark, never mind the huge DLIII. The uDAC sits comfortably behind the Torii, out of sight and doing its job very well indeed. You may wonder why I'm not using the Brick for this system, since I like it so much in comparison. The answer is that I have so little room on the shelf in this room that there is no room for a computer. So we are using a Squeezebox Touch which works perfectly with the uDAC and is simple and stable enough to be used by everyone in the house.

    So there you have it. Take my opinions with a grain of salt since everyone's ears and preferences are different.

    One final word... The silkscreened labels for L and R outputs on my early production uDAC were reversed! Wyred are providing what they say is a very nice (and rather expensive) appliqué that can be stuck on, covering the silkscreened labels.

    Highly recommended!

  5. #5

    Comparison

    I am curious how the uDac stacks up against the Wavelength Proton. It sounds like a truly value added proposition as it appears most Wyred products seem to be. Thanks
    Frank Mercurio[br]Brisbane, Australia[br]Bel Canto S300IU | 2009 Mac Mini | 750g miniStack | Audio Physic Yara | Blue Circle Thingee DAC | Bryston Speaker Switch | ERA Design D4 | Signal Cable Speaker wire | Belkin Pro USB cable | iTunes | Play (FLAC) | iPhone w/ Remote App

  6. #6
    Freshman Member autoformer's Avatar
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    uDAC vs Proton

    I have not yet done an A-B comparison between the Proton and the uDAC and should not have had the Proton in my list. I used the Brick as a reference for my comments on the proton which was a bad idea. I have compared the Brick to the Proton many times and always come away with the impression that the Proton has a more refined sound. I seem to hear more detail and atmosphere with the Proton. To my ears, the Brick has a more prominent midrange and a little less extension at either end than the Proton, though it is also very good. I have a sensitivity to overly hard midrange, and the Proton seems a little more laid back in this regard.

    I will be able to do a uDAC/Proton comparison in about a week, but my expectation is that the uDAC will have more powerful bass and maybe a touch less high end detail than the Proton. It will be a little tricky to compare because the output level of the Proton is so much lower than the uDAC. For my application (Squeezebox + Decware Zen Torii + Zu Omen), the uDAC is perfect, since it has optical and coax inputs. I would not be able to use the Proton in that room as it is USB only. And don't forget, the Proton also has the advantage of being battery powered vs USB powered, and it has a headphone jack built-in. The Proton really is very, very good. To be honest, of all my DACs, it's the closest to my current favorite - the Ayre QB-9. I think the Stereophile review called the Proton "scarily close" to the Wavelength Cosecant, and based on my own experience, I don't doubt it, though I have not heard the Cosecant for myself.

    One other note about the uDAC's bass. It really is very pronounced. In fact, for the first time, I am starting to have problems with the Omens reacting with the room. I've now got a nasty problem with a lower mid-bass boom that just wasn't there before with the V-Link I used previously on this system.

  7. #7

    Bass

    So do yo find the bass with the Wyred to be a problem or do you think it's a good problem?
    Frank Mercurio[br]Brisbane, Australia[br]Bel Canto S300IU | 2009 Mac Mini | 750g miniStack | Audio Physic Yara | Blue Circle Thingee DAC | Bryston Speaker Switch | ERA Design D4 | Signal Cable Speaker wire | Belkin Pro USB cable | iTunes | Play (FLAC) | iPhone w/ Remote App

  8. #8
    Freshman Member autoformer's Avatar
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    Depends on your system

    The uDAC seems to share its powerful low end with its other Cullen Circuits/Wyred4Sound siblings. In that regard, it is similar to the DLIII and DAC2. Whether or not it's too much will depend on your system. Wyred offers a 30 day money back guarantee with only a 15% re-stock fee. That's $60 if you really decide you don't like it, but I doubt that'll be the case.

  9. #9

    I like to give it a try.

    I like to give it a try. Anyone sells it for less than retail and no tax? I am in CA so tax is a killer at 9.25%

    What's the power voltage on the PSU? AC or DC?
    Headphones collection
    http://www.youtube.com/user/hifiguy528/videos

  10. #10

    uDac is a USB DAC

    HiFiGuy -
    The uDac has no power supply aside from it being powered by your USB connection at you computer hence it will work at any voltage anywhere in the world. As they say in the biz, it's Plug and Play mate!
    Frank Mercurio[br]Brisbane, Australia[br]Bel Canto S300IU | 2009 Mac Mini | 750g miniStack | Audio Physic Yara | Blue Circle Thingee DAC | Bryston Speaker Switch | ERA Design D4 | Signal Cable Speaker wire | Belkin Pro USB cable | iTunes | Play (FLAC) | iPhone w/ Remote App

  11. #11
    Freshman Member autoformer's Avatar
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    USB Power Only

    @HiFiGuy: The uDAC uses USB power when connected to your computer. When you're using the optical or coax interfaces, the supplied power supply provides power to the DAC via the USB port. It's just a little wall wart with a USB cable.

    You can also purchase it from Walter Lederman at Underwood HiFi, which is based on the East Coast. Give him a call. Walter runs a good outfit.

  12. #12

    Walter

    Agreed, Walter is a solid citizen and a huge resource in the business.
    Frank Mercurio[br]Brisbane, Australia[br]Bel Canto S300IU | 2009 Mac Mini | 750g miniStack | Audio Physic Yara | Blue Circle Thingee DAC | Bryston Speaker Switch | ERA Design D4 | Signal Cable Speaker wire | Belkin Pro USB cable | iTunes | Play (FLAC) | iPhone w/ Remote App

  13. #13

    A favor to ask...

    Hi everyone,

    I was wondering if any owners in this thread could check to see if a particular sampling rate is supported over S/PDIF- 176.4kHz to be exact. I found a website with a 24/176.4 file available for download here. Some products like the CA DacMagic 100 will support 44.1/48/88.2/192, but not 176.4. I have a few recordings from HRx at 176.4kHz, and would like to deliver them to the uDac without upsampling if possible.

    Thank you in advance!
    -Tyler


    Office: iPod classic -> Shure SRH-940 Home: Oppo BDP-83/Synology DS211j -> Integra DTR-7.8 -> Revel speakers

  14. #14
    I'm interested in that dac, any more input?

  15. #15
    Just got my udac yesterday. So far I am impressed. Have been using an HRT Streamer 2 which has made me happy and contented until I got my unit yesterday. there is more clarity and the bass is more upfront. Will continue the burn in and will share my thoughts. In the meantime, enjoy the music.

  16. #16
    autoformer,

    I don't mean to get off topic, but I have 1 quick question. What is the difference between and autoformer and an output transformer? Or are they basically the same thing? I've never been able to get a clear answer on this. Given your name, I thought you would probably know.

  17. #17
    Newbie
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    I was interested in this DAC but it doesn't do 24/88.2 over USB. Got the info from W4S. Go figure.
    Dan

    iMac (10.8.2) ⟶ Audirvana Plus ⟶ Schiit Bifrost ⟶ Little Dot MK III AKG K550


  18. #18
    Junior Member NOMBEDES's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HiFiGuy528 View Post
    I like to give it a try. Anyone sells it for less than retail and no tax? I am in CA so tax is a killer at 9.25%

    What's the power voltage on the PSU? AC or DC?

    I bought a W4S DAC2 from "BStock" Got a fair deal. (DAC2 was like new) Call them and ask if they are expecting any uDACs back from review. W4S's Clint was very helpful.

  19. #19
    uDAC vs DragonFly???
    Headphones collection
    http://www.youtube.com/user/hifiguy528/videos