Versatility, Performance, and Value
Versatility, performance, and value are the hallmarks of the Music Hall c-dac15.3. By combining a fantastic three-input DAC with a great sounding CD player, Music Hall has designed a one-box solution that will simplify and dramatically improve your digital music experience.
Connect the c-dac15.3 to a computer, Sonos, Apple TV, Airport Express, or any digital streaming device. Or simply play a CD. You'll be amazed by the sonic performance, especially compared to 'lesser' gear lacking Music Hall's extensive pedigree.
Two DACs on Board
The c-dac15.3 has two separate DACs on board. It uses a 24-bit/192 kHz Burr-Brown PCM 1796 DAC for the CD player. The three inputs – optical, coaxial digital, and USB-B – use a 24-bit/192 kHz Wolfson WM8805 DAC. The transport is the trusted Sanyo HD850 'mid-ship mounted' and vibration damped. There is a gold-plated stereo analog output as well as a coaxial digital output.
Other features include a brushed aluminum faceplate, high efficiency toroidal power transformer, removable power cord, and special padded vibration damping feet. The c-dac15.3 is voltage switchable and plays CD and CD-R/RW formats.
Great sound and simplicity go together. The c-dac15.3 is easy to operate and partners beautifully with Music Hall's matching a15.3 integrated amp. The included system remote control operates both components, and the c-dac15.3 has an easy-to-view display.
|Write Your Own Review|
|Update: Skipping issue solved.|
It was my fault for it easily skipping on scratched discs. I was using the wrong amp fuse 1.6 amp instead of 1.0 amp when I changed the fuse to a Hi-Fi Tuning one. Now with the stock fuse it is not quite as good as sounding, but I would rather have it this way with no skipping. Its better with scratched discs than any player I ever had and it still sounds more than good enough. If you ever decide to upgrade the fuse... make sure you get an exact 1 amp replacement. Happy listening to all.
|- Joseph O, IL|
|Dependable performance and value. Designed and engineered in U.S.A.|
I will do a quick positive and negative list which calculates my final verdict. Positives: Great sound with all genres of music that I throw at it. Future proof. Can be used as a good DAC with USB input from a computer. Also optical and coaxial digital inputs from other devices, such as a television, blu-ray player, cable box and video game system etc. There is an input switch for all three of those digital inputs accessible from the front panel input button or from the remote, which is very convenient. More positives: Very easy to upgrade with cables and also the fuse. If you want to go that far. It is an option. If you are picky about where it is made, it is designed and assembled in The United States. The remote is handsome, sleek and has a bit of a durable feel to it upon holding. It loads and scans discs very quickly. The sound: After about 50 hours of being on and playing music during some of that time it is still settling in, but the audio performance is very dependable with all types of music that I throw at it. There is a good balance of the frequency spectrum and nothing really seems over-emphasized with a good sound stage and weight to the sound. Very good bass control with a pleasing mid range and pleasant highs. Negatives: The display could be better. If not using within a few feet, the display can be a bit hard to read, even in its brightest setting with a small font, but its not an unattractive display and looks quite decent. It has three brightness levels, well two really and also an off setting. Which is nice and minimal. The biggest complaint that I can give is that it is prone to skipping with scratched discs more-so than my previous player. However if you have and extensive library of scratched discs, you can always hook up your previous or another player/changer to it via digital cable and it will still sound quite good. Build quality is great. The player isnt the flashiest and the display could be better, but it is built pretty solid and feels like it will last for years. The remote is quite good as well. Build: 4.25/5.00 Sound: As previous comments mentioned. It is really a nice sounding player in its price range, and the alternate dac is quite good as well. 5.00/5.00 Functionality: With cds in good shape: 5.00/5.00, cds that are mildly scratched: 2.50/5.00 = Functionality: 4.00/5.00 Features: As mentioned before. Its where this unit shines along with its value. Simply unreal for the price. A computer Dac, digital and optical inputs, quality stereo rca jacks, easily upgradable. Al controlled via front panel or controlled by its excellent remote. Features: 5.00 stars. Value: 5.00/5.00 Overall 4.75/5.00 rounds out to an Audio Advisor 5.00/5.00 star purchase. Cant recommend this player enough. Its a perfect starter player, or a keeper for a high end system as well.
|- Joseph O, IL|
Much better than my Musical Fidelity A-3 when it was new! The MF cost $850 a number of years ago. This Music Hall is a real bargain at $549. Very, very pleasing natural sound.
|- John M, NC|