The 18 to 24 dBu outputs of the pro DACs being evaluated recently got me to re-look at my own Genelecs and other active monitors input sensitivity. My 8030s get to full output at -6dBu...but they have an input sensitivity adjustment capability of 80dB so technically there's no issue running something that hot into them. Though for my uses to minimize digital attenuation on the Soekris (4V RMS/ 14 dBu) I run them at about -64dB and that's generally loud enough for the small room they're in. I took a look at ATC and (for example) the SCM50ASL has an adjustable range from 2.2dBu to 8.2dBu for full output, and they are known to be less sensitive monitors. With these of course you absolutely need to pad down the input significantly from 24 or 18 dBu to not blow the things up, let alone bring output down to manageable levels even in midfield. My question is why do these sources run so hot? Is this for headroom for long runs and voltage drop, or is it headroom for the other intermediate gear like compressors, EQ and so on? Or something else?