It's connected via optical from an iMac at one end, and balanced XLRs at t'other end, and plays lossless rips from CDs. I doubt a 'better' DAC would fundamentally change things that much. (And he uses a Rega P3-24 with TT-PSU and Denon DL103R as well as digital.)Craig M. said:having heard a i30 on my scm19s, chebbys friend could do well to ditch the dacmagic as source.
By the way, my friend loves his system so he doesn't need to ditch (or change) anything. I also doubt there is anything wrong with his room acoustics either. ATC SCM speakers (just like any speakers) are not going to be universally liked by everyone. Their big virtue - hard-hitting and ruthless exposure of recordings - is a bit too ruthless for my liking more often than not.
Example... he finds it very difficult to find good enough recordings of some Queen albums any more. Before the ATC SCM11s I don't recall that was ever a problem for him. There are two ways you can look at that. Either (a) he must sacrifice some of the music he likes and/or buy better recordings if they are available. Or (b) speakers/systems should be able handle the odd recording that is a bit 'rough' around the edges without making it un-enjoyable.
In fact I expect better systems and better speakers to make such recordings more enjoyable not less.