Method To Choose DAC For Bluetooth Speakers

» Posted on Feb 3, 2020 in Home Theater Systems

Method To Choose DAC For Bluetooth Speakers

DAC (Digital to Analog Converter) helps in converting the digital data into sound with the assistance of a playback device. Every device that we use has an inbuilt DAC.

For instance, using a DAC with Bluetooth speakers, smartphones, and the computer can turn the digital data into sound that we can hear.

All modern devices have in-built devices. But most of the time, it is not of good quality. The alternative is to assist the listening set up with an external DAC.

Reasons for the need for a DAC

We didn’t need DACs 50 years ago to produce an analog signal but it is important choosing a DAC for portable audio to enjoy the amazing sound experience.

Microphones captured and processed sound as analog signals inside a recording studio, typically in reel-to-reel tape format. It then pressed the analog signal into record grooves.

The needle on your turntable “felt” those grooves anytime you wanted to listen to a tune and produced an electrical analog signal. The signal was transmitted through your preamp, and eventually through your speakers.

Recording engineers today transform analog signals to a number (ones and zeroes) bitstream. The number series is a digital signal to the audio. You need to convert it back to an analog signal, to listen to it.Method To Choose DAC For Bluetooth Speakers2

The work of DAC

Understanding what is going on inside a DAC is critical to choose DAC for Bluetooth speakers. Recall how we said a DAC transforms a bitstream of zeroes and ones into analog signals? Ok, according to a standard timing sequence a DAC does not always convert the bit stream to analog.

This is also clocking errors. They show themselves in jitter during playback. And jitter has a detrimental effect on fidelity during playback.

Your music just doesn’t sound as amazing in layman’s words. It can lose the great sense of excitement and engagement you get at a live show.

Internal DACs within most devices aren’t very well suited to manage clocking errors, causing more jitter. On the other hand, most DACs outside, or outboard, are designed to minimize these errors.

Consequently, they reassemble the music more efficiently from the bitstream of the ones and the zeroes.

Types of DACs

Standalone DAC

Usually, this type of Digital-to-Analog Converter is a simple box with inputs and outputs to connect to your existing signal chain.

If you want to purchase a standalone DAC, note that you may need an external amplifier to improve the converted sound to your playback system as well.Method To Choose DAC For Bluetooth Speakers3

Portable DACs

This type of DAC is intended for use with smartphones, tablets, laptops, and any other mobile listening unit.

Portable DACs almost always has an integrated headphone amplifier, which ensures that you can use this as a segue from your mobile to your headphones.

While carrying another device alongside your mobile phone may seem unnecessary, this is, in fact, an ideal solution for devices that lack a 3.5 mm connection.

You can fly easily with your favorite high-end headphones and the new iPhone, or simply improve your on-the-go laptop performance with a portable DAC.

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