Well, for your comparison, strictly speaking you can't include the coax cable in your total cos you'll need it for the aurender too if I'm not mistaken In any case, a lot depends in one's set up. For myself I focus on a good USB dac so that I avoid having to get the USB converter and additional digital coax cable, which is not only more expensive, it also potentially degrades performance vs a dac with a properly built USB implementation. So that takes out the price of the digital coax and wavelink hs. Plus I think not everyone buys >$1k USB cables...
I think he meant digital coax cable and good ones does make a huge difference. I think keeping USB out of the DAC box is a plus not minus. Say even if you omits these items there is still linear or battery power supply to consider. I would pick a very good linear supply over battery.
mars73 is just referring to DH's comparison of $5.6k price tag for macmini setup when he shldn't include the price of a good coax in (i.e. $4.6k) when comparing the price versus a aurender, which also needs that same cable.
but hey what do i know. all i know is i'm happy with the performance with my battery powered mach2, vs the cost incurred, and it totally kicks the butt of my mbp. i'm sure those who get the aurender will feel the same.
With the Aurender, you take tweaking out of the equation. It sounds great out of the box. No settings. No software. No additional drivers.The Mac still requires a fair amount of tweaking to get it right. And it's close but just not quite there yet.For me, a couple of things are in favor of the "industry building block" side like with a Mac. I love what PureMusic is doing and with native DSD support and USB-X interface, it looks like we can do more things on the Mac, even speaking from the perspective of a music server. And as I mentioned before, the iTunes library means all my other devices sync off the same single library.
In the recent review of the Meitner MA-1 DAC, Computer Audiophile prefered the USB output from SOtM tX-USB internal PCI to USB converter over AurenderS10 AES output.Quote " Recapping my experience with the Meitner Audio MA-1, I preferred the sound quality with the C.A.P.S. v2.0 server via asynchronous USB slightly better than through the Aurender S10 via AES."