Denafrips Ares12th-1

skutters

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Feb 10, 2013
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Hi,

I have been pondering of late about whether to update my 10 year old Arcam irDac I have over the last 12 months changed my speakers and integrated amplifier which now consists of Kef R3 Meta speakers and a Rega Aethos amplifier. They sound very nice together but I can't help but think are they being held back from sounding even better by my old Dac. The dilemma is that pretty much All DACs that are in my price range are Chinese and there is no way to audition any of them, the Denafrips Ares 12th -1 for example gets pretty much glowing reviews from all reviews I have seen but I am really reluctant to buy a piece of equipment that I can't test for myself in my system.

So just wondering have any of you people out there bought the Denafrips and what opinions can you share and has anyone ever taken the plunge and bought a product blind just going on reviews. It's a shame that there are no UK dealers stocking these DACs.

Regards, Kev.
 
I’ve bought ‘blind’ before but only when used and easily re-saleable, or new with a defined window for returns.

Remind us what source(s) you use with your DAC. Older DACs are prized by many for their smoothness, and it can be disappointing to find newer ones with ‘higher definition’ can seem too revealing or bright on anything but your best recordings. So, it depends!
 
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skutters

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Feb 10, 2013
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I’ve bought ‘blind’ before but only when used and easily re-saleable, or new with a defined window for returns.

Remind us what source(s) you use with your DAC. Older DACs are prized by many for their smoothness, and it can be disappointing to find newer ones with ‘higher definition’ can seem too revealing or bright on anything but your best recordings. So, it depends!
Thanks for the reply, I am using a Cambridge CXC CD Transport and a Blue sound Node N130 . Yes I do like a more mellow warm sound that's what I liked about the Rega Aethos and I do think the Arcam irDac gives that also. I definitely don't want a up front sound that's why I won't buy without trying. I suppose I could just leave well alone on the Dac side of things. Another option I was actually considering was upgrading the CD Transport but I'm not convinced how much difference they make but I would actually be able to try a couple of those to find out. Food for thought 🤔
 
Thanks for the reply, I am using a Cambridge CXC CD Transport and a Blue sound Node N130 . Yes I do like a more mellow warm sound that's what I liked about the Rega Aethos and I do think the Arcam irDac gives that also. I definitely don't want a up front sound that's why I won't buy without trying. I suppose I could just leave well alone on the Dac side of things. Another option I was actually considering was upgrading the CD Transport but I'm not convinced how much difference they make but I would actually be able to try a couple of those to find out. Food for thought 🤔
I think in your shoes I’d be tempted to give the folks at Deco Audio a call. They’ve recently launched their own design, made in the UK, at a very reasonable £550. I can’t immediately see a return option, but I’m sure something is possible. You might even live in Buckinghamshire and be able to visit.

More here:- https://decoaudio.myshopify.com/col...-audio-transfer-digital-to-analogue-convertor

No connection aside from having an acquaintance who does lots of business with Deco, so I know they exist.
 
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twinkletoes

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Nov 16, 2021
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Hi,

I have been pondering of late about whether to update my 10 year old Arcam irDac I have over the last 12 months changed my speakers and integrated amplifier which now consists of Kef R3 Meta speakers and a Rega Aethos amplifier. They sound very nice together but I can't help but think are they being held back from sounding even better by my old Dac. The dilemma is that pretty much All DACs that are in my price range are Chinese and there is no way to audition any of them, the Denafrips Ares 12th -1 for example gets pretty much glowing reviews from all reviews I have seen but I am really reluctant to buy a piece of equipment that I can't test for myself in my system.

So just wondering have any of you people out there bought the Denafrips and what opinions can you share and has anyone ever taken the plunge and bought a product blind just going on reviews. It's a shame that there are no UK dealers stocking these DACs.

Regards, Kev.
I’ve heard all dacs sound the same!?lol

I wouldn’t buy anything you can’t listen/ play with, been there done that, exspensive mistakes to rectify couldn’t care less if they’re getting best reviews in the world.

Go to/ring a few dealers and ask what they have preloved in stock and ask them to keep you notified for anything that comes in. And they will they make more money of preloved gear
 

Gray

Well-known member
I’ve heard all dacs sound the same!?lol
And I once read that 'no DAC under £1000 is worth considering' 😏
Both statements are clearly not true.

Although, when it comes to differences in sound between adequate DACs, they must rate under 5 on the scale, mustn't they?
The scale of 0 - 10.
Where 0 is the difference a cable change will make.
And 10 is the difference a speaker change could make.
 

skutters

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Feb 10, 2013
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I think in your shoes I’d be tempted to give the folks at Deco Audio a call. They’ve recently launched their own design, made in the UK, at a very reasonable £550. I can’t immediately see a return option, but I’m sure something is possible. You might even live in Buckinghamshire and be able to visit.

More here:- https://decoaudio.myshopify.com/col...-audio-transfer-digital-to-analogue-convertor

No connection aside from having an acquaintance who does lots of business with Deco, so I know they exist.
Had a look at their site interesting r2r Dac using valves, only does 16bit sampling though so how would the 24 bit ultra HD files from Amazon music sound that i use?.
 

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