Re: [ADI-2 Dac] HiFi : you use a preamp or not ?
The ADI-2 DAC is perfectly neutral, with distrotion and noise well below the limits of human hearing acuity.
As every electrical audio component, also ADI-2 DAC has its sonic trace. Perfectly neutral would mean that what is on the input matches 100% to the output. Which is not the case on any DAC. Sure, this is RME fans forum but still it is good to stand with the feet on the ground.
I have ADI-2 Pro AE in my system and couple months ago I bought ADI-2 DAC since I did like the remote. Also I did assume it might sound very similar and it seemed as a good idea to switch these two since I am not using the extra functionality of the Pro version compared to DAC. After some 2 months of listening to both of them on a different kinds of music, in my different mood tempers, focused listening and background listening, I found clear sonic differences between the two which I was able to recognize without knowing which of them is currently in operation. In my system and room acoustics the Pro version better suits even if I did strongly prefer the DAC personally (has the remote and would save me some money to buy records :-) ).
This is surprising, since as far as I know they are designed to sound the same and have the same specs. That they are so different you even prefer one over the other against what is practical for you is a big ???????
Maybe being a hifi enthusiast has trained you to very high auditory levels (no sarcasm). As a musician/producer but causal music listener, I struggle to hear differences between dacs, mic preamps, amps eqs etc. Maybe cause they are tools to me to create a sonic signature anyway. I have complete creative freedom, to alter the sound of anything I work with. Which are much bigger strokes (changes) then any dac or preamp will give. When I go to much into the absolute sound quality universe, that feels more neurotic then creative to me.
I post this not to be critical but to join the different forces (users) on this forum. Technicians, musicians, producers and listeners and the great guys of RME.
Love and peace,
Babyface pro fs, HDSP9652+ADI-8AE, HDSP9632