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Teac UD-H01 DAC & Onkyo C7030 CD player, a $328 combo rates very highly!

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by GuildX700, Aug 9, 2014.

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  1. GuildX700

    GuildX700 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    Been listening a lot to my Onkyo C7030 CD player with the Teac UD-H01 DAC I recently got free for helping someone move. It came with a half meter Wireworld coax cable, I had a 14 gauge power cable laying around so I did not use the stock 18 gauge one it came with. Paul said he paid $189 for it, which price I was able to verify as still available.

    First off, the Teac DAC has a much, much better sounding headphone amp with significantly more output than the Onkyo's. This could be one of the best killer budget CD player/ headphone set ups ever.

    I've done a lot of comparisons earlier with the Onkyo against older classic top of the line CD players from Pioneer, Sansui, JVC, and the Onkyo lost out to all of them, it ended up in a tie with a recent release Yamaha changer CD-C600.

    This 2x32 bit Burr Brown equipped DAC changed all that. The bass now is full, fast & tight, more top end air and resolving of reverb's tail end. A 3D soundstage is now not just a faint illusion but a full presentation.

    Wow, I'm impressed, does this set up kill my high end Pioneer PDS95 transport currently using a late version Musical Fidelity M1DAC?

    No, but it does not disappoint, sounding musical, warm, involving but yet accurate.

    And........ the total price of admission? $328.
    Yes that number is right. You can put together a quality brand new CD player & 2x32 bit DAC combo for under $350!!

    I checked the site my friend got the Teac UD-H01 DAC from and it's still selling for $199, free shipping and there's a coupon for $10 off making it $189.

    The Onkyo C7030 CD player is still selling for $139.

    Total outlay if purchased new, $328!
    I can't think of anything at around double this price that would better this combo.

    http://www.rakuten.com/prod/teac-ud-h01-black-d-a-converter-with-usb-audio-interface/230020199.html

    http://www.amazon.com/Onkyo-C-7030-...F8&qid=1407641386&sr=8-1&keywords=onkyo+c7030




    http://www.teac.com/product/ud-h01/

    [​IMG]

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    Halloween_Jack, bluemooze and mikeyt like this.
  2. mikeyt

    mikeyt Forum Resident

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    How important is the transport when using a quality DAC such as the Teac? Would the same CD sound just as good if the transport was a cheap(er) CD or blu-ray player?
     
    GuildX700 likes this.
  3. GuildX700

    GuildX700 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    I have not tested this DAC with a cheap or combo player. My experience with combo players is they suck as CD players. YMMV.
     
    Tullman likes this.
  4. konoyaro

    konoyaro Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bay Area, CA, USA
    Thanks for the write up. I've been considering the Teac UD-301 but there aren't many reviews for it yet. That the UD-H01 performs well is promising.
     
    GuildX700 likes this.
  5. GuildX700

    GuildX700 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    A few more points, this DAC is really, really, dead quiet, headphone or RCA output. I have not used the XLR outputs yet.

    It runs a bit hot so I wouldn't put it anywhere there is not good ventilation. It has a large vent cover on it's top that needs air.

    Seems there's a following that have been modding it with great success.

    I have not used it on a computer yet, you need to download the latest drivers if you intend to.

    When I get time I will pair it up with my high end PD-S95 transport and flip flop my late version Musical Fidelity M1DAC to the Onkyo and see what differences a true, serious transport can make with this DAC.
     
  6. Brother_Rael

    Brother_Rael Forum Resident

    Location:
    Scottish Borders
    Glad you like it. You now have a very versatile little unit. Along with Onkyo, Teac are making some great products just now that highlight what is possible for little outlay. I thought the UD-H01 was a great product, and they've continued that with their present line. Nice job!
     
    GuildX700 likes this.
  7. GuildX700

    GuildX700 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    As a silly plus....the front panels of both actually match nicely as far as looks go...FWIW.

    Pricewise it seems a lot of the better low end stuff is getting heavily discounted after a year or 2 from their release, not sure if they overpriced them initially on MSRP or if the market is just that soft that they end up getting dumped. Not sure what that means for the future of good lower end stuff. Perhaps this type of stuff is just good spinoff from the manufactures better stuff and that is where they make the real money and then trickle it down to stuff like this?
     
  8. Brother_Rael

    Brother_Rael Forum Resident

    Location:
    Scottish Borders
    I think the larger manufacturers are under some degree of pressure to produce gear that meets the technology capability that progress offers them. So Teac came up with a 32-bit DAC that came with a good headphone amp as a bonus. Good on them.
     
    GuildX700 likes this.
  9. PH416156

    PH416156 Alea Iacta Est

    Location:
    Europe
    I have heard only good things about that Teac Dac; unfortunately prices in Europe are not as good as the deal posted by GuildX700
     
    GuildX700 likes this.
  10. GuildX700

    GuildX700 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    Ok, I did the swap, I paired the Teac UD-H01 with my PD-S95 transport to see what differences a serious transport can make.

    I also flip flopped my late version Musical Fidelity M1DAC to the Onkyo C7030 to see if it could make good use of this DAC.

    I was a bit surprised with the results, the Teac UD-H01 with my PD-S95 transport sounded an order of magnitude better than with the Onkyo. The Teac is near stock except for a shorter, 14 gauge over the longer stock 18 gauge power cord & I also opened it up and twisted the power lines off the transformer, a simple mod purportedly proven to improve the already clean noise floor even more.

    It's a close draw with this budget Teac and the Musical Fidelity M1DAC going into the PD-S95. It takes some careful listening to hear the differences, the Elite PD-S95 transport although long in the tooth is still to this day an incredible machine IMO.

    With the PD-S95 the MF DAC has a bit more 3D soundstage, and it seems to resolve the faintest details better.

    On Robin Trower Bridge Of Sighs title cut in the opening, at about 3 seconds there is the faintest of background talk, then about at 4 seconds there's a very faint finger slide sound on the guitar strings before the guitar is faded up. This was near inaudible on the Onkyo alone, but very obvious on the PD-S95/MF DAC Combo, and a bit less obvious on the PS-S95 UD-H01 combo.

    Bass heft, pace and feel came off superior on the PD-S95/MF DAC Combo, but it still sounded quite good on the PS-S95 UD-H01 combo, but the Onkyo alone sounded quite thin and a bit sluggish in comparison.

    With my favorite drum test, Montrose Rock Candy the PD-S95/MF DAC Combo wins hands down, the drums are in the room, with the PS-S95 UD-H01 combo it seems to loose that immediacy, with the Onkyo alone the illusion is just not there at all.

    Finally, Pairing the Onkyo with the MF DAC was a disappointment, it really did not sound any better than with the Teac DAC. That was obvious enough early on that I did not spend more time with that combo.
    Seems as a transport its got it's limitations and the Teac exploits them the best for the $$$.

    FWIW, here's some pics of the PD-S95, (not mine) I tossed it on a scale, a whopping 45 pounds.

    [​IMG]

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    Halloween_Jack, martinb and mikeyt like this.
  11. GuildX700

    GuildX700 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    A few more detail pics of the PD-S95. It is a stable platter unit.

    [​IMG]

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    Copper shielding abounds.
    [​IMG]

    3 large transformers run this thing.
    [​IMG]
    The bottom base is way over built.
    [​IMG]
     
  12. GuildX700

    GuildX700 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    Just a bit more info, the system used for auditioning is an Adcom GFP 565 preamp modded by the original designer, it's running in bypass outputs to 2 modded Adcom GFA 5800 amps biwired to a set of Pioneer Elite TZ9 Speakers.

    They have front and rear firing 10" woofers, ceramic dome mid and tweeter, the crossover floats on a board isolated from the main enclosure as does the mids/tweeters. Silly heavy at 125 pounds each I need to use a dolly to move them.

    Cables/cords are not big name items, but rather well made ones that function very well IMO.

    Whole system running on 2 dedicated 20 amp lines direct to my 200 amp breaker box.

    [​IMG]
     
    Halloween_Jack and jeffsab like this.
  13. Halloween_Jack

    Halloween_Jack Forum Resident

    Location:
    Hampshire, UK
    So glad the little Teac is starting to get some recognition. It's insanely good, period. Rather than the usual back-handed, "good for the price" comments you often get from the Hi-Fi comics...
    Let me let you into a little secret. The Teac - subjectively - utterly beat my Audiolab M-Dac for musical involvement, for emotion, for getting to the heart of the music. The M-Dac by comparison sounded matter of fact, monochrome and almost sterile. After keeping the Teac, and selling on the M-Dac, I got used to its superb performance, taking it for granted. Enjoying digital as much as analogue. But I was bugged by its comparatively cheap(er) looks and build as time went on. I know - shallow of me!
    After a bit of saving & equipment selling, I was able to afford the Teac UD-501. I was very excited after all the positive word of mouth surrounding this DAC. After the initial buzz of owning this new piece of equipment had abated however - and the 501 looked superb and sounded sublime on DSD - I had to admit to myself I that I preferred the UD-H01 for Redbook and High-Res PCM material. It just has a naturelness that's damn hard to beat. Sometimes, you just know when something is right. No point fighting it, or giving a damn what other audiophiles might think.
    I think the problem is many assume the Teac is a budget DAC, therefore must be partnered with budget components. Yet it really shines with higher quality gear.
    It needs a few days to truly come on song, but if one pays the same attention to getting the best from it as one would from pricier gear, it really does reward.
    You can buy these second-hand for around £100 here in the UK now.
    I really miss my 'old' one.
    A 'new' one is now on its way to me... Lesson learned! ;)

    - John -
     
    GuildX700 likes this.
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