M-Audio 2496 or DAC?


Standard Member
i am currently in the process of building a new PC, and i currently have an M-Audio 2496 soundcard in my possession, which i think is pretty damn good, but would it sound better in my new setup to get a DAC seeings as I have an s/pdif out from my mobo and feel it in to that? my budget for the DAC would probably be £70 max - at this price point would i notice a big difference?

my current setup is a Rotel RA04 connected to a pair of KEF Celeste IIIs via some Chord Carnival speaker cable.


No, to be honest I wouldn't bother, although technically you could probably get a DAC for £70 that would better than the now ageing 2496.
However, as you say, it's still a good sounding card and the improvement in sound quality IMO will be minimal in this price bracket.
If you really want to upgrade, then I would suggest saving a bit more money and buying something like the Musical Fidelity V-DAC for £130. This will provide a noticeable improvement and is worth spending the extra money on.

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