$5000 to Upgrade your DAC / AMP combo. WWUD?

I know there might be a PS Audio bias here, but given the choices below and $5000 budget, what would you choose and why?

(Other considerations, I am using Tekton Pendragons as my speakers, 4 ohm)


PSA gain cell DAC + First Watt SIT-3

Since your speakers are efficient and optimized for 4 ohm, the sit3 will have plenty of power. I rate the sit3 a bit higher than bhk250 in my setup

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I am not familiar with anything but Schiit Audio, so let me voice my opinion in favor of the Schiit option.
You could do much worse, and probably no better at that price point.

The four x 6SN7 tube buffer on the Freya, with balanced interconnects between the components and amps would be a system engineered and designed to work as one unit. The new Aegir Mono-blocks would power your speakers at ‘Class-A-ish quality’. The Yggdrasil is by far the best DAC ‘Bang for the Buck’ at $2500. (Even the GungnirMB at $1249 is worth a look.)

In full disclosure: I dream of this Schiit. But I use a ModiMB and Valhalla HP/preamp to feed the Sprout100.

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Its a tough one, I keep ping-ponging considering all the tradeoffs between these options and Im driving myself insane :slight_smile:

Here is a question for you, the Aegirs have a way lowering damping factor @ 150 vs. the M700 PS Audios @ 1100, do you think this makes any difference. I have read that after a certain point the damping factor is irrelevant, aka, there is a minimum to meet and any excess has no noticeable effect.

I hear Freya 2 is coimg out, more decision for you :slight_smile:

Wyred4Sound Integrated amp and DSD DAC with femto clock. About $4500. I have their STP-SE Stage 2 preamp, and Multi Channel amp, and it makes for a nice setup. DSJr is my DAC.

When I had this decision to make a few months back, the Gain Cell DAC/Pre with the M700 mono blocks was the clear value winner! Although your table lists it at $3,999, I had equipment to trade-in that reduced the system price to $2,799. I had originally been leaning toward the Parasound combo before realizing that the Stellar system would give me exactly what I was looking for at a substantially lower price. I’m really enjoying the Stellar gear!


They released two new versions of the Freya, you can read about them on their site but basically one has tubes and one doesn’t now. And I guess they fixed the hum issues they were having with the new tube version.

I’d do this:

Decware transformer output DAC: http://www.decware.com/newsite/ZDSD.html

Decware 25th Anniversary Zen Amp: http://www.decware.com/newsite/SE84UFO25.html

Of your choices, and with some legwork, it shouldn’t be too difficult to get the M700’s for under $2000 new. Then I’d go with the Brooklyn Bridge, which you can maybe get for $2500.