• 12-07-2007, 02:19 PM
    BladeRunner302
    Preamp / Computer speakers ??
    Hey guys! I'm totally new at this stuff, but I'm learning, so please bear with me here for a second.

    I don't know too much about the electronics of HiFi audio, but I am a musician and love to listen to music. I've always wanted to have a nice sound setup so I figured I would start with a tube preamp to run my computer and a turntable through.

    I've been looking at the Dared MP5, as it is USB but also has RCA inputs. But I'm curious about something:

    Once I've plugged my computer's soundcard (Audigy 2 Notebook--- thinking of upgrading to Echo Indigo ?) into the RCA inputs, is it then possible to send the Dared's output through my computer speakers? Or do I have to buy a set of speakers or monitors to listen through? My guess is that I do in fact need to buy new speakers. I'd rather not sell what I have, because I like them, but I will if there's no way to output the preamp through them.

    For reference I have these for my computer:

    http://reviews.cnet.com/pc-speakers/...-30993080.html

    (Logitech Z-2300.)

    Thanks guys!
  • 12-07-2007, 03:49 PM
    Feanor
    Well, a few things
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by BladeRunner302
    Hey guys! I'm totally new at this stuff, but I'm learning, so please bear with me here for a second.

    I don't know too much about the electronics of HiFi audio, but I am a musician and love to listen to music. I've always wanted to have a nice sound setup so I figured I would start with a tube preamp to run my computer and a turntable through.

    I've been looking at the Dared MP5, as it is USB but also has RCA inputs. But I'm curious about something:

    Once I've plugged my computer's soundcard (Audigy 2 Notebook--- thinking of upgrading to Echo Indigo ?) into the RCA inputs, is it then possible to send the Dared's output through my computer speakers? Or do I have to buy a set of speakers or monitors to listen through? My guess is that I do in fact need to buy new speakers. I'd rather not sell what I have, because I like them, but I will if there's no way to output the preamp through them.

    For reference I have these for my computer:

    http://reviews.cnet.com/pc-speakers/...-30993080.html

    (Logitech Z-2300.)

    Thanks guys!

    First off since the Dared MP-5 has a USB connection and a built-in DAC, you won't be using your sound card at all. Follow the instructions that come with the Dared, but you'll do something like this:
    • Start your computer
    • Connect a USB cable between the Dared and the computer and switch on the Dared
    • Likely you'll get the "New hardware found" routine; let the operating system look for a suitable driver
    • Once this has run its course, go to Settings -> Sound and Audio Devices -> Audio. There, under Sound playback defaut device, make sure "USB audio device" is select.
    From this point the Dared replaces you sound card -- and that's a good thing.

    Your Logitech speakers are "self-power", so if you want to use the Dared as you amplifier, you'll need to get a pair of non-self-powered speakers.
  • 12-08-2007, 03:44 AM
    basite
    Feanor's right,

    and I can honestly tell you that you will not miss the logitechs once you get other speakers...
  • 12-08-2007, 09:13 AM
    BladeRunner302
    Thank you guys! Yeah actually I'm really excited... my roommate even said he'd buy the Logitechs from me so that I don't have to bother with ebay. Now it's just searching for some nice bookshelf monitors, and maybe a turntable :)
  • 12-08-2007, 10:01 AM
    bobsticks
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by BladeRunner302
    Now it's just searching for some nice bookshelf monitors, and maybe a turntable :)


    Hey BladeRunner,

    First and foremost, welcome to the forum and congrats on the new Dared. New toys=fun.

    Let me offer a word of caution. Don't buy too much at once, rather concentrate on putting each piece of the puzzle together with the best components possible. By that I mean, it would be appropriate to spend more on the speakers (arguably the most important part of a system) than to buy lesser speaks and a turntable. Many of us wish we had started slowly, concentrated on one thing at a time, optimized it and moved forward. You can save a lot of time and money by getting the right gear in the first place and skipping "upgradeitis".

    By bypassing the computer's soundcard and going to a dedicated amp your experience can be bettered exponentially.I think you'll be surprised at just how much better it can be, so don't waste the opportunity to do it right by doin' too much at once.

    I'm confident that if you list some of the particulars we can throw out some advice as to where to start in the speaker hunt. How big is your room? What kind of music do you prefer? How many watts does the Dared put out?

    Just let us know and be prepared to go out and listen to determine what sounds best to you. 2008 is gonna be a good year for you.

    Cheers
  • 12-08-2007, 10:33 AM
    BladeRunner302
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bobsticks
    Hey BladeRunner,

    First and foremost, welcome to the forum and congrats on the new Dared. New toys=fun.

    Let me offer a word of caution. Don't buy too much at once, rather concentrate on putting each piece of the puzzle together with the best components possible. By that I mean, it would be appropriate to spend more on the speakers (arguably the most important part of a system) than to buy lesser speaks and a turntable. Many of us wish we had started slowly, concentrated on one thing at a time, optimized it and moved forward. You can save a lot of time and money by getting the right gear in the first place and skipping "upgradeitis".

    By bypassing the computer's soundcard and going to a dedicated amp your experience can be bettered exponentially.I think you'll be surprised at just how much better it can be, so don't waste the opportunity to do it right by doin' too much at once.

    I'm confident that if you list some of the particulars we can throw out some advice as to where to start in the speaker hunt. How big is your room? What kind of music do you prefer? How many watts does the Dared put out?

    Just let us know and be prepared to go out and listen to determine what sounds best to you. 2008 is gonna be a good year for you.

    Cheers

    Hey thanks! You guys have all been so helpful.

    The only other thing I'm going to buy right now are some speakers just because I can't listen at all unless I have some. I'll probably wait on the turntable until at least the end of the summer.

    My room is pretty small - about 10 x 17 feet. My room next year will be different, but similarly small, if not just a bit bigger. The Dared puts out 13 watts max per channel @ 4 or 8 ohms.

    Price is kind of an issue for me. I got the Dared for about half retail price @ $300. I guess right now I've been looking for a decent pair of bookshelf monitors for around $200. Whatever I get I'm going to probably look on ebay--- so speakers that retail for like $400, I could probably get for $200. Which I think is okay because after all, I'm just starting out, and I really don't NEED a fantastic pair of $5,000 speakers. Any advice or recommendations would be awesome! I really appreciate it.

    Oh: and in terms of music, I listen to a really wide range of stuff. My favorites include a lot of hard rock, and cool/bebop jazz. But I'll switch from Fiona Apple to John Coltrane to Cursive to Tower of Power to Michael Jackson to The Beach Boys to Prince... so I guess I'd need speakers that are pretty well-rounded.
  • 12-10-2007, 04:07 PM
    BladeRunner302
    What do you guys think about a pair of Paradigm Atom V.5 (http://stereophile.com/standloudspeakers/907para/) or something like Infinity Primus 162 (http://stereophile.com/standloudspeakers/1007inf/) ?

    I was also looking at Wharfedale Diamond 9.1 (http://stereophile.com/standloudspea...105wharfedale/) but I can't seem to find this model here anywhere...

    Any suggestions would be awesome!
  • 12-10-2007, 04:50 PM
    bobsticks
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by BladeRunner302
    My room is pretty small - about 10 x 17 feet. My room next year will be different, but similarly small, if not just a bit bigger. The Dared puts out 13 watts max per channel @ 4 or 8 ohms.

    Price is kind of an issue for me. I got the Dared for about half retail price @ $300. I guess right now I've been looking for a decent pair of bookshelf monitors for around $200. Whatever I get I'm going to probably look on ebay--- so speakers that retail for like $400, I could probably get for $200. Which I think is okay because after all, I'm just starting out, and I really don't NEED a fantastic pair of $5,000 speakers. Any advice or recommendations would be awesome! I really appreciate it.

    Oh: and in terms of music, I listen to a really wide range of stuff. My favorites include a lot of hard rock, and cool/bebop jazz. But I'll switch from Fiona Apple to John Coltrane to Cursive to Tower of Power to Michael Jackson to The Beach Boys to Prince... so I guess I'd need speakers that are pretty well-rounded.

    That's the idea, never be ashamed of starting on a budget. Everyone around here, whether they admit it or not started on one. The trick is to find the best fit within the context of the associated gear and what you can comfortably afford.

    That said, it's gonna be tricky finding speaks that can play to a decent level smoothly within that budget. Assuming your room constraints imply that you'll be around others max volume isn't an issue, which is good. Thirteen watts can be made to scream but it takes some very sensitive speakers to do it--probably out of your range even used.

    Some names that might come to mind are KEF, Klipsch and, indeed, the Paradigm Atom that you mentioned. Personally I would be more prone to go with the PSB Alpha (see the linked review with the Atom) due to the statistics. I think you'll get more speaker for the money but please be aware I don't have alot of experience with PSB and tubes. It's possible that the Dared will handle average volume loads evenly but we need someone with more experience with PSB's to chime in...In any case you're best off if you can hear the particular amp/speaker combo in your room for yourself.

    C'mawn boys...
  • 12-10-2007, 10:27 PM
    BladeRunner302
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bobsticks
    That's the idea, never be ashamed of starting on a budget. Everyone around here, whether they admit it or not started on one. The trick is to find the best fit within the context of the associated gear and what you can comfortably afford.

    That said, it's gonna be tricky finding speaks that can play to a decent level smoothly within that budget. Assuming your room constraints imply that you'll be around others max volume isn't an issue, which is good. Thirteen watts can be made to scream but it takes some very sensitive speakers to do it--probably out of your range even used.

    Some names that might come to mind are KEF, Klipsch and, indeed, the Paradigm Atom that you mentioned. Personally I would be more prone to go with the PSB Alpha (see the linked review with the Atom) due to the statistics. I think you'll get more speaker for the money but please be aware I don't have alot of experience with PSB and tubes. It's possible that the Dared will handle average volume loads evenly but we need someone with more experience with PSB's to chime in...In any case you're best off if you can hear the particular amp/speaker combo in your room for yourself.

    C'mawn boys...

    Now that you mention it, something like the PSB-B25 look like they could be a good fit for me. It seems like they have enough sensitivity for the low wattage on the preamp, but also seem to perform well with jazz and rock.

    And I think I could probably afford 'em...