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Author Topic: Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?  (Read 105 times)

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Offline mattstick

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Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?
« on: January 26, 2021, 12:33:48 PM »

I bought a Cambridge Audio DAC Magic 100 to run high res audio off my Mac Mini to my living room setup.

My work station is about 12-15 feet from my living room stereo - should I place the DAC at the work station and run RCA analog audio cables to my amp/receiver?

Or do I keep the DAC at the home stereo and run a long USB from the Mac Mini to the DAC?

Is there a max. length for USB cable runs?

Any thoughts?

Offline PIE-GUY

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Re: Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2021, 02:11:49 PM »
from google:

Quote
The USB 2.0 specification limits the length of a cable between USB 2.0 devices (full-speed or hi-speed) to 5 meters (or about 16 feet and 5 inches).
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Offline Hicks

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Re: Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2021, 02:16:01 PM »
I highly doubt you would hear any difference between the two configurations.

But, if you want someone to tell you that will, you know where to look. 
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Offline Superfreakie

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Re: Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2021, 02:18:42 PM »
As an aside: how do you like that Cambridge Audio DAC Matt?
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Offline jam>

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Re: Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2021, 02:42:20 PM »
I'd go with a long semi-nice 15 or 25ft RCA cable from Monoprice.
https://www.monoprice.com/product?p_id=5346
« Last Edit: January 26, 2021, 02:44:56 PM by jam> »

Offline mattstick

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Re: Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2021, 02:56:24 PM »
from google:

Quote
The USB 2.0 specification limits the length of a cable between USB 2.0 devices (full-speed or hi-speed) to 5 meters (or about 16 feet and 5 inches).

What is this google you speak of?

I highly doubt you would hear any difference between the two configurations.

But, if you want someone to tell you that will, you know where to look. 

I didn?t want to be shamed for buying a DAC that only costs $300, so I came here for advice...

As an aside: how do you like that Cambridge Audio DAC Matt?

I ordered it from Crutchfiled yesterday, hoping it arrives this week...

I'd go with a long semi-nice 15 or 25ft RCA cable from Monoprice.
https://www.monoprice.com/product?p_id=5346

I grabbed a twisted pair shielded 20? RCA off Amazon for about $25. Figure I?m good.

The only USB-c to USB-B 2.0 cables I could find were for printers, I?m guessing that?s not too big of a deal.

Offline kellerb

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Re: Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?
« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2021, 03:35:01 PM »
I grabbed a twisted pair shielded 20? RCA off Amazon for about $25. Figure I?m good.

The only USB-c to USB-B 2.0 cables I could find were for printers, I?m guessing that?s not too big of a deal.
well, when the cables run out of treble, they don't play at all.  And you won't believe how overpriced the refills are.  That's how they get you

Offline PIE-GUY

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Re: Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?
« Reply #7 on: January 26, 2021, 03:41:47 PM »
I grabbed a twisted pair shielded 20? RCA off Amazon for about $25. Figure I?m good.

The only USB-c to USB-B 2.0 cables I could find were for printers, I?m guessing that?s not too big of a deal.
well, when the cables run out of treble, they don't play at all.  And you won't believe how overpriced the refills are.  That's how they get you

classic KB!!
I've been coming to where I am from the get go
Find that I can groove with the beat when I let go
So put your worries on hold
Get up and groove with the rhythm in your soul

Offline mopper_smurf

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Re: Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2021, 03:23:14 AM »
I grabbed a twisted pair shielded 20? RCA off Amazon for about $25. Figure I?m good.

The only USB-c to USB-B 2.0 cables I could find were for printers, I?m guessing that?s not too big of a deal.
well, when the cables run out of treble, they don't play at all.  And you won't believe how overpriced the refills are.  That's how they get you

classic KB!!

Indeed.
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Offline mattstick

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Re: Mac > DAC > Amp, USB or RCA for long cable run?
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2021, 03:12:53 PM »

DAC finally arrived, and it sounds great. Still running my 1979 Marantz but I?ve been streaming High Rez from Tidal and a bunch of 24/96 FLAC file sets. Super happy.