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AKM 4499 5 days 4 hours ago #56149

  • OCDguy
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The SHD is almost perfect for the active towers I am building, EXCEPT it has a 3 generation old 4490 DAC chip. Anyone know a) someone who can upgrade this to the 4499 or b) someone who can talk some sense into the manufacturer to get caught up with the times so they can wow everyone with superior measurements over at ASR. I’d pay $300-$500 more for a pair of the far superior 4499. Heck the Topping D90 uses only one and still murders dual 4490 kits, and that would only cost them like $80 more. The Sabre ES9038 pro or q2m are great options, also. Thanks!

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Last edit: by OCDguy. Reason: Wanted to add Sabre options

AKM 4499 5 days 2 hours ago #56152

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Hi, That would be very cool. We always want the best and newest version, when it comes to this sort of thing. But, the reality is, even if the unit was upgraded to AKM 4499 you would not really notice much difference. That's for 2 reasons. 1) both the 4490, and 4499 have excellent S/N ratio's,  THD & THD+N specs. Yes 4499 is WAY better. But both of them spec far better than anything we could hear. 2nd) No matter the DAC chip, you will always  be held at  32/192 because of the DSP chipset (and 24/96 because of DIRAC LIVE) .
So, in closing, yes I agree with you, it would be cool if they did upgrade, as we always strive to have the best. But I don't think it would matter a whole lot if they did. So why add cost to the device for no significant gain in performance.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Jukka, entripy

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Last edit: by amirsag.

AKM 4499 4 days 17 hours ago #56157

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Amir,
Thanks for the detailed explanation. You may be right. However, for some reason it seems like things that measure better outside the range of our hearing still sound better in the audible spectrum. ASR has taught me a lot about the value of measurements, but even with comparing Be tweeters to Diamond, where both breakup beyond the audible spectrum- the diamonds still sound better. Comparing my Topping D90 to other DAC’s that shouldn’t really be distinguishable- the better measuring D90 sounded better. I like to think I am somewhat beyond the psychoacoustics influence, and repeatedly the better measuring stuff sounds better. I run the D90 on my inexpensive system, and want better SQ on my premium system that is in the works. This is why I am a little leery of the SHD, because it does not measure as good as my current setup, and I am looking for better. If you have suggestions for an active crossover/DSP/room correction/DAC with at least 4 balanced outs, please let me know. Thanks again.

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AKM 4499 3 days 22 hours ago #56174

  • gbr
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You could use a SHD Studio connected to external DACs.

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AKM 4499 3 days 17 hours ago #56178

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That's my case and pairing it with a topping D90.... very very happy with this combo

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AKM 4499 3 days 2 minutes ago #56191

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The analog part of the dac matters more than the actual chip. Many cheap chips have performance beyond audible range, like ASR has pointed out, and even good chips can be bad if the analog section is executed badly. I'm glad miniDSP decided to go with a very good chip instead of overpriced chip and add digital output for those who want to double the cost...

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