Dac for Drop + THX AAA 789

Hi Guys,

I have Drop + THX AAA 789 amp with Sennheiser 6xx headphone (I’m planning to add studio speakers as well in near future) and i wanted to get a DAC for it.
I have a hard time choosing one. Here is my shortlist:

  • Airist Audio R-2R
  • Loxjie d40
  • Schiit Bifrost 2

I know price points don’t match that well but I’m like willing to go extra if there is a night and day (or close to night and day) difference.

I really appreciate it if you could help me with pros and cons of this combo.

the Bifrost 2. the THX amp is clinical and while the Airist is the least expensive R2R, I’ve been told it comes with a lot of corners cut to get that low, so saving up for a better R2R from Soekris or Denafrips would be best. Loxjie is still a bargain basement budget brand to me, so ymmv.

as you said - IMO spending so much more on a dac over your amp isn’t the greatest budget allocation pretty diminishing returns
if you got a $200ish DAC with the features you want it’d be fine

Hmmm. I see. One good thing about Loxjie is that it comes with Bluetooth.
I found another DAC to compare. Do you think Bifrost 2 is better or the SMSL DO200? one of my friends told me about SMSL but i have my doubt. Because i heard good things about Schiit products before but not SMSL. Im sure its good but i want your opinion on this as well.

If the $200 DAC is the same as a $600 DAC, then why should i even bother going for $600 one? ill go and get and get a Schiit Modius. I want to use them to power my 6xx and a pair of speakers.

not necessarily the same YMMV but imo if you run a $600 dac with a $200 amp you’re being held back by the amp
I tried to a/b a $500 dac vs my usual $200 dac’s when I still had my 789 and only noticed a minimal difference

I see, so what do you suggest for $200-300 range DAC? I was thinking maybe Modius (as of now its out of stock on their website so it takes 4-6weeks to arrive).
Is there any good DAC with Bluetooth capability in this price range too or not?

if you’re looking for something US made Geshelli is solid Products – Geshelli Labs LLC can customize quite a bit if you want as well sadly no built in BT you could add a BT receiver of some sort examples: https://www.amazon.com/FiiO-Transmitter-Bluetooth-Amplifier-Resolution/dp/B09J48ZPD4/
XDUOO QX50 Pro/XQ-50 Pro/ XQ-50 Pro 2 Buletooth 5.0 DAC Audio Receiver Converter support PC — HiFiGo
units with built in BT:
SMSL DO100 ES9038Q2Mx2 Bluetooth 5.0 DAC — HiFiGo
SMSL SU-6 DAC Bluetooth 5.0 LDAC USB Decoder — HiFiGo

considet the Zen Air DAC. it has a built in headphone amp, but the stereo output is good to another headphone amp or regular amp.

the Zen Air Blue is just a Bt DAC with no headphone amp, if you want Bt that much.

No not US made in particular.
Thanks for the suggestion mate! i will try to make up my mind in a few days.

Dude to be honest, i dont like the look of the Zen designs. I saw a lot of good reviews but the design is not what i like sadly.

Hi Guys,

Just an update, i saw that SMSL has a promotion on its products and i saw the SU-9N is selling for $360 so i grabbed it. Hope i made the right choice.