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View Full Discussion The differences between V800 and V850 are more evolution than revolution.
I don´t think that there can be a revolution concerning DACs these days.
But the differences are more than cosmetical.
First, the base of the USB circuitry is not Tenor any more but X-Mos based.
So we are sure to have a software support also for upcoming OS like Windows 10.
Second, we now have a double-mone architecture with two converters per channel.
This will not be noticeable in therms of THD or SNR but it sharpens our philosophy "no sound".
V850 is more open, more detailed, has a bigger and deeper soundstage but still retains a maximum neutrality compared with V800.
For our opinion all this is not due to the 32 bit deep conversion but has its source in the dual converters per channel and our refined analog output circuitry.
To be honest, 32 bit deep processing is useful in mixing consoles or other equipment where data is merged, filters and equalisers are set or rooms are created.
In a D/A converter, at the endpoint of digital data, it is nice to have but nothing more.
Third, there had been lots of customers asking for a remote control in the past because our D/A served to drive (active) speakers directly.
DAC V850 offers the opportunity to be remote controlled !
And of course there is a better power supply, better signal tracing and much more details.
Other things which made V800 famous will remain:
- The compact size
- The range of digital inputs
- The selectable range of resampling
- The volume control in the digital domain
- Five different analog output voltage settings without affecting the output impedance
- Balanced and unbalanced outputs which can be used simultaneously because they have their own drivers
So I'd guess the V800 in this drop gives over 99% of the sound quality of the V850, absent a few features, for roughly half the price. It's extremely difficult for most people to identify different dacs by the sound alone (this holds for me too) so what I'm paying for here, in addition to sound quality, is features, build quality and support. A few years ago I purchased a $500 interface, made in China, that malfunctioned within 6 months. I'm guessing the V800 build and sound quality are roughly comparable to those of the Schiit Gungnir (retail $850, made in the USA) but the V800 has more features.