Audiolab M-DAC or 8200DQ or MF M1DAC and M1HPA
I wonder if anyone would care to offer their opinion on the relative strengths and weaknesses of the above mentioned components?
Ideally I would use as a preamp direct to a power amp (thinking of MF M1PWR or Audiolab 8200P or even a second hand Quad 909 but open to suggestions) or would I be better off going into an integrated amp with analogue pre rather than using the digital pre?
(Wife would like everything to match of course)
The Audiolab solution is obviously one box against MF two boxes, the headphone output is important as well.
Price wise there is not a lot in it, the M-DAC being a couple of hundred quid cheaper.
Inputs would be TV, Denon DBP-2010, Humax PVR and flac via USB from laptop.
Current system is Rega Brio 3 and Linn Index speakers. I am replacing the speakers and am very taken by what I have read about the Harbeth P3ESR so really am looking to come up with a shortlist of DAC/amp combinations to demo with the Harbeths.
Music tastes range from Dire Straits and Steely Dan to Diana Krall and Miles Davies. The set up will also be used for TV & movies; probably the most important thing for me is clarity of vocals and dialogue. My ears are overly sensitive to high frequencies and I am looking for a warm relaxing sound rather than analytical but also like to be able to hear separation between instruments, if that makes sense. I find it very difficult to describe what I'm after in audiophile terms and would aim to keep this kit until it was obselete or broken!
Any thoughts are most welcome...