Adding a Dac and Stresmer

Looking for some advice and need you guys to check my thinking…
I have a PrimaLuna Preamp and Amplifier…..need a Dac and streamer….Being I have a preamp to my thinking I don’t need a Dac that has a preamp and volume, am I thinking right? The speakers are Klipsch Heritage so I think I should get a mellow sounding Dac, maybe a Denifrips Pontus with the Auralic Aries G1.1…..would be happy with a $5000 budget…


If you can find one used, I would highly recommend the MSB Analog DAC and Power Base with their renderer.  It is a great DAC/streamer and fantastic 3D soundstage.  I upgraded to that from a Naim NDX which was also a nice DAC/streamer, but not in the same league as the MSB Analog.

@soix I never actually tried it without the LPS as I had it already set up and just plugged it in.  My guess is that it was an incremental improvement but my real surprise was with the Sense app and the quality versus using Roon.  I didn’t want it to be given how good the Roon interface is but the sound quality difference was obvious.

And thanks for the heads up on the Pontus firmware upgrade.  I read the string discussing the pros and cons on here and think I'll wait until the consensus is clear!

And here I am, reading stresmeter... thinking "dear, I need one - that I would most likely never read..." Oh, well. Cognac is good. If weather did not go "f@ckyall", I'd be having a nice double maduro cigar on my patio. I have a nice pair of Focal speakers there...
Oh, yes: in the main system I am using Magnum Dynalab MD806t - but that is only for internet radio, FM and streaming my burned CDs (I have it all stored on NAS). I do not like an idea of a monthly payment for anything, including music and especially TV... When you combine all of those monthly payments over just one year, it surprises you how much they are milking away from just one family. However, maybe I am not that good example of an average consumer. We all have different priorities, and I am guilty as charged: my everyday cartridge is Koetsu Rosewood Signature. I am sure I could have bought a nice DAC, streamer, and maybe one year of streaming for the same amount of money. 

@gilaad Thank you for sharing your impressions about the Holo Audio Red. I'm also interested in purchasing it for my second system (home office). A couple of questions if you can answer them ... can it act as a Roon endpoint? Also, does the IS2 out work with Denafrips DACs like Pontus 2?

Bryston was mentioned, they make great sounding products and an excellent company too. Ayre is another company you may want to consider. A friend of mine uses an Audionote DAC and really likes it.