M-DAC and balanced connection n00b - more volts than I expected?

G

Guest

Guest
Hi all.

Up until now I have run a Sonos box directly into the Moon 600i (via RCA phonos), and briefly dabbled with Sonos -(coax)-> MF V-DAC -(RCAs)-> Moon

Last night I bought an Audiolab M-DAC and a pair of balanced XLR cables, and duly hooked things up as Sonos -(coax)-> M-DAC -(XLRs)-> Moon

My first impression is that the whole thing is REALLY CONSIDERABLY LOUDER THAN IT USED TO BE.

This isn't a problem. The Moon can boost and attenuate all its inputs, the default is +6dB which is how I've always run things, so I just dialled the M-DAC down to +2dB which is a lot more under control, if still a bit louder than it was.

So, idle curiosity - is this a known wrinkle of the M-DAC, just outputting more volts than other boxes, or something to do with the balanced connections (which I've never tried before)?

Any background greatly appreciated.

Thanks

/g

 

vacdac

Wammer
Wammer
Jul 19, 2011
11,530
280
143
Manchester
AKA
Chris
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Yeah it seems pretty common in that many devices that feature both flavours of output often have double the voltage output on the balanced output. Around 4.2v as opposed to generally around 2.1v fer single ended for example. There doesn't seem to be as large a difference on my new C.A. SM6 streamer, which is handy as I sometimes use a valve buffer with its single ended outputs. But with my outgoing MF m1 dac I found the same as yourself.......although it didn't bother me massively as there was no loss of fine control of volume, just the volume level points were slightly different for each output.....if anything in fact I've seemed to find that fine level controls for late night listening have generally seemed to be improved using the balanced outputs.

There are of course differences in spec/implementation from different mfrs. so its not all completely hard & fast....in my own limited experience. (caveat:roll: :geek: )

 
G

Guest

Guest
Hi Chris

Thanks for the feedback (no pun intended). Glad I'm not imagining things!

 

taff

Wammer
Wammer
Feb 20, 2013
653
4
0
South Wales & Lo
I'm sure it's the nature of XLR's? As they have a hot and cold pin, the output voltage is doubled Vs open ended I thought. More volts = more volume!

 

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