My DAC as a preamp can output 2 and 6V to the inputs of the M700. Any concerns that I should be mindful of if selecting the 6V output?
Input sensitivity for those amps is 1.6 volts to full power so 2 volts should be more than enough. You can try 6 volts though and should hear pretty soon if you are overloading the amps input stage plus you will have very little travel room on the volume control.
Start low if you don’t have a gain range on the volume control that you like try the higher output. Just remember to have the volume at 0 when you switch.
Thanks for your thoughts…just wanted to confirm that 6V is not too high a voltage for the design parameters of the M700 input stages.
The sensitivity of your speakers is going to be a big factor in whether or not the 6 volts will work also. Much over 90 db may make it unacceptable.
hoping for a comment from PS Audio on this one…anyone there?
To answer your question whether 6V will harm the M700 -
You’ll likely find you will be on the lower side of the volume control when in this setting. When playing at normal volume the amp wont see a different voltage on the input compared to when you use the 2V setting. This is because the volume level is dependent on the voltage present on the input of the amplifier, regardless of gain or output headroom in the preamp/DAC.
I recommend the 2 V setting because it should offer you plenty of headroom since the M700 clips around 1.6V. 6V is obviously not as safe because if you were to max your volume out by accident, even signals far below 0dBfs could clip the amps.
There’s also another whole side to this equation. Noise. I don’t know if the DAC manufacturer uses an analog attenuator or digital control to change between the two output settings. If its an analog attenuator, 2V will give you the greatest S/N level since the digital volume control will not attenuate the noise floor of the DAC.
In order to fully optimize your S/N in this set up I highly recommend the use of an analog preamp.
I’ve always said it - gain structure in audio chains should be taught in Secondary (High) school!
Thanks for your reply…I was experimenting with the higher output voltage from my DAC (dCs Bartok direct to M700s) as I note a slight reticence/softness in the upper mids and naively wondered if the increase would increase dynamics at lower volume levels. We are listening “near field” with stand mounted monitors in a condo so volume levels are naturally restricted. (Wilson Tune Tots - amazing speaker!)
Have read through a thread on “Audiophile Style” where class D architecture is discussed and there are a number of owner’s posts praising the Stellar amps with some also noting this perceived softness in the upper range.
Enjoying the M700 immensely, btw.