List of devices that bypass iPod's internal DAC - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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post #61 of 90 Old 06-15-2011, 04:56 AM
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Okay, I'll check the manual today after work. Thanks!
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post #62 of 90 Old 07-25-2011, 05:47 PM
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Add the Ayon CD-07 to the list. It has
A built in IPOD dock. Paul at usatubeaudio (Ayon's
U.S. distributor)
confirmed that it bypasses the IPOD dac
and utilizes the internal dac in the player.

Not sure if the digital audio would be available
at the player's digital output but also not sure
why you'd care if you have the 07.
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post #63 of 90 Old 08-01-2011, 09:12 PM
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Hi all, I've just bought a Wadia 171i transport and I need help regarding one issue: I have an Anthem AMV50V as a processor to use with the Wadia and would like to know if I should get an external DAC (such as a Cambridge Audio Dacmagic or Arcam rDAC) or if I should run the coaxial digital signal from the Wadia straight into the Anthem letting the Anthem DACs do the work?
Which would sound better?
Thanks for the help
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post #64 of 90 Old 03-19-2013, 01:00 PM
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I use the Krell KID and PAPA DOCK. The KID is made specifically to bypass the internal iPod DAC. Not a cheap solution but, paired with B&W speakers, a nice bit of sound.
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post #65 of 90 Old 03-19-2013, 01:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrandPixel View Post

Creating a list of devices (docks/cables/etc) that extract a digital stream from Apple devices. Just establishing the thread right now. Please chime in with names of products that fit this purpose. Hope to have a complete and up to date list with links, prices, etc.

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Originally Posted by Harrypt View Post


But I learned here on AVS that all DACs sound the same so what's the difference?

Me too. Why not just use the Dac in your iPod? Won't it sound the same as the dCS fully balanced Scarlatti DAC ?
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post #66 of 90 Old 03-19-2013, 07:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K Shep View Post


Me too. Why not just use the Dac in your iPod? Won't it sound the same as the dCS fully balanced Scarlatti DAC ?

Hold on that's almost guaranteed to be a straw man argument. What a few posters have claimed is that there probably isn't an audible difference among DACs, whether between a $100 dac and a $2k one.
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post #67 of 90 Old 03-19-2013, 09:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kashmereino View Post

Hold on that's almost guaranteed to be a straw man argument. What a few posters have claimed is that there probably isn't an audible difference among DACs, whether between a $100 dac and a $2k one.

I own 3 Dacs, they all sound different to me...in my opinion.
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post #68 of 90 Old 03-20-2013, 10:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K Shep View Post

I own 3 Dacs, they all sound different to me

Not trying to dispute you at all. Just saying that you know the deal around here. You either didn't do proper blind listening tests OR all 3 or your DACs are broken.
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post #69 of 90 Old 03-20-2013, 10:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kashmereino View Post

Just saying that you know the deal around here.


You're right I do know the deal around here. And that is why I make sure to word an opinion correctly. My perception of my Bryston BDA-1 at $2195 retail is that it sounds "better" than my Schiit MODI $100 retail. You didn't mention level testing, the BDA-1 is approximately 4db louder than the MODI when measured. I am not here to recommend one Dac over another, however I can hear differences when I change out the 3 stand alone Dac's that I own.

If a member is interested in a good budget Dac I do recommend they look at the specs of the MODI, if they're interested in USB only unit, IMO the little Schiit Dac is a world beater at the price powered over USB and async.

And I was wrong when I stated I have 3 Dac's, I have 3 stand alone Dac's. I am using a 4th Dac in my Denon receiver to power a pair of in-ceiling speakers. It is perfect for back ground music.
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post #70 of 90 Old 03-21-2013, 05:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K Shep View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by kashmereino View Post

Just saying that you know the deal around here.


You're right I do know the deal around here. And that is why I make sure to word an opinion correctly. My perception of my Bryston BDA-1 at $2195 retail is that it sounds "better" than my Schiit MODI $100 retail. You didn't mention level testing, the BDA-1 is approximately 4db louder than the MODI when measured. I am not here to recommend one Dac over another, however I can hear differences when I change out the 3 stand alone Dac's that I own.

So does everybody if they do casual listening tests. Ever try to do something more exacting, better controlled, or better bias controlled?
Quote:
If a member is interested in a good budget Dac I do recommend they look at the specs of the MODI, if they're interested in USB only unit, IMO the little Schiit Dac is a world beater at the price powered over USB and async.

I doubt that the Schitt would sound any different than this if someone bothered to do a legitimate test:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16812156032&nm_mc


Quote:
And I was wrong when I stated I have 3 Dac's, I have 3 stand alone Dac's. I am using a 4th Dac in my Denon receiver to power a pair of in-ceiling speakers. It is perfect for back ground music.

I probably have over 100 DACs and ADCs kicking around the house. Some of the really crappy ones actually sound different.
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post #71 of 90 Old 03-21-2013, 07:13 AM
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I haven’t been on here long enough to gauge the members. But after reading a few posts, it appears that some folks are not quite as geeky as the ones who inhabit HeadFi.org. I apologize for the following treatise on motorcycle riding on an audio site, but it serves as a lead-in for my research into iPod audio systems.

I was looking for a portable system for my iPod. I enjoy listening to music while riding my motorcycle. Many folks would think that’s unsafe. But I’ve been riding for over forty years and, considering safety paramount when riding, have made many personal observations about safe riding. First off, while riding, most safety information is visual. Audial cues are mostly confined to hearing engine noise, the tires of automobiles approaching from behind, and horns. These are all cues that would be missed riding in a car, with the windows up, and the audio system cranked. I ride a HD which produces quite a lot of mechanical noise. It has a windshield which reflects that mechanical noise. Wind noise, although lessened with a windshield, plays a large factor in reducing audial information. Over time, wind noise on a motorcycle can also lead to hearing loss. This is especially true on the open road where I do the vast majority of my riding. I don’t do a lot of low speed city riding. I found that, using IEMs, I could not only reduce wind noise but also the volume at which I listen to music. I found that I could hear approaching cars as well as horns. I can even hear voices. I find this infinitely preferable to the way some folks ride: with mechanical noise, wind noise, and fairing mounted speakers blaring low-quality sound. I find it preferable from a safety standpoint as well as an audiophile standpoint.

All that being said, I began to research portable systems and got quite an education on HeadFi.org. Many folks there are audiophiles and very particular about their equipment. They made my ignorant brain hurt. There are also a number of reviews there produced by audiophile professionals who spend their lives discerning quality of sound. I got an education concerning internal iPod DACs and the quality of sound they produce. Sifting through my imperfect memory, I vaguely remember reading a discussion on HeadFi.org about how (I believe it was after their 6 gen iPod) iPod changed its internal DAC from a Wolfson (which most folks consider high-quality) to some other lower-quality brand. The audiophile problem then becomes how to bypass this low-quality internal DAC. I assume that’s the reason GrandPixel started this discussion.

My portable system includes a Cypher Labs AlgoRhythm Solo DAC. I also use an amp and JH16 IEMs. So, GrandPixel, if it has not been mentioned before this, add the Cypher Labs AlgoRhythm Solo as another device to bypass the internal iPod DAC.


Of course all this quality of sound discussion is fairly meaningless if you are listening to MP3 or MP4 files. I do not know if the members who cannot tell the difference between DACs are aware that MP3& MP4 files are compressed and that much of the sound quality of the music is lost in compression. Being new, I apologize if I’m being Captain Obvious, but that may be why some folks cannot discern a difference in sound quality between DACs. Uncompressed files produce true 16 or 24bit CD quality sound and that difference is discernible to those of us who care about audiophile sound.

As to my home system, all the professional reviewers insist that the Krell Kid bypasses the iPod internal DAC and produces a discernible sound quality difference even for MP3 files.
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post #72 of 90 Old 03-21-2013, 07:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Ever try to do something more exacting, better controlled, or better bias controlled?

Voltmeter, digital sound level meter and changing equipment by one as another sits forward of the audio equipment. In my opinion the issue with listening tests by the average person in their home is the time interval between audio tracks (test tones).

I would advise anyone curious about audio evaluation to read chapters 17-18 of "Sound Reproduction: Floyd E. Tolle"

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

I probably have over 100 DACs and ADCs kicking around the house. Some of the really crappy ones actually sound different.

I just purchased a new Panasonic TV, it's a "smart set". It has built in Youtube user interface (VoD). I am able to run a cable from the set to my receiver and utilize the Dac in the Panasonic, in 5.1. As I get older Youtube is a good source for the goofy old stuff I listened to as a kid.
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post #73 of 90 Old 03-22-2013, 06:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K Shep View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Ever try to do something more exacting, better controlled, or better bias controlled?

Voltmeter, digital sound level meter and changing equipment by one as another sits forward of the audio equipment. In my opinion the issue with listening tests by the average person in their home is the time interval between audio tracks (test tones).

I would advise anyone curious about audio evaluation to read chapters 17-18 of "Sound Reproduction: Floyd E. Toole"

Since you mentioned it:

"
17.5 BIAS FROM NONAUDITORY FACTORS

A widespread belief among audio professionals is that they are immune to the influences of brand, price, appearance, and so on. They persist in conducting listening evaluations with the contending products in full view. This applies to persons in the recording industry, audio journalists/reviewers, and loudspeaker engineers.

As this is being written, the 45th anniversary issue of Stereophile magazine arrived (November 2007). In John Atkinson’s editorial, he interviewed J. Gordon Holt, the man who created the magazine. Holt commented as follows: As far as the real world is concerned, high-end audio lost its credibility during the 1980s, when it fl atly refused to submit to the kind of basic honesty controls (double-blind testing, for example) that had legitimized every other serious scientifi c endeavor since Pascal. [This refusal] is a source of endless derisive amusement among rational people and of perpetual embarrassment for me, because I am associated by so many people with the mess my disciples made of spreading my gospel.

When I joined Harman International, listening tests were casual affairs, usually sighted. At a certain point it seemed appropriate to conduct a test, a demonstration that there was a problem. It would be based on two listening evaluations that were identical, except one was blind and one was sighted (Tooleand Olive, 1994).

Forty listeners participated in a test of their abilities to maintain objectivity in the face of visible information about products. All were Harman employees, so brand loyalty would be a bias in the sighted tests. They were about equally divided between experienced listeners, those who had previously participated in controlled listening tests, and inexperienced, those who had not. Figure 17.12 shows that in the blind tests, there were two pairs of statistically indistinguishable loudspeakers: the two European “voicings” of the same Bias from Nonauditory Factors 359

The anechoic data were unreliable below 200 Hz. Two of the loudspeakers were visually identical, large floorstanding units, representing alternative crossover network designs from different sales/marketing regions in Europe thought to cater to special regional tastes in sound. The third product was a recently introduced, inexpensive subwoofer satellite system with sound-quality performance that belied its small size and low cost. This was to be the honesty check-in sighted tests. The fourth product was a respected high-end product, a large fl oor-standing unit, from a competitor. One review of it claimed sound quality “equal to products twice its price.” Another allowed that there were “a few $10 000 speakers that come close.” Because this test was an evaluation of sound quality, not dynamic capabilities, care was taken not to drive the small system into overload. Loudness levels were equalized as
well as possible, using a combination of measurements and listening. They remained unchanged throughout the test. The small bars on top of the large verticals are 95% confi dence error bars, an indication of the difference between the ratings required for the difference not to be attributable to random factors.

In the sighted version of the test, loyal employees gave the big attractive Harman products even higher scores. However, the little inexpensive sub/sat system dropped in the ratings; apparently its unprepossessing demeanor overcame employee loyalty. Obviously, something small and made of plastic cannot compete with something large and stylishly crafted of highly polished wood. The large, attractive competitor improved its rating but not enough to win out over the local product. It all seemed very predictable.

From the Harman perspective, the good news was that two products were absolutely not necessary for the European marketing regions. (So much for intense arguments that such a sound could not possibly be sold in [pick a country].) In general, though, what listeners saw changed what (they thought) they heard. Dissecting the data and looking at results for listeners of different genders and levels of experience, Figure 17.13 shows that experienced males (there were no females who had participated in previous tests) distinguished themselves by delivering lower scores for all of the loudspeakers. This is a common trend among experienced listeners. Otherwise, the pattern of the ratings was very similar to those provided by inexperienced males and females. Over the years, female listeners have consistently done well in listening tests, one reason being that they tend to have closer to normal hearing than males. Lack of experience in both sexes shows up mainly in elevated levels of variability in responses (note the longer error bars), but the responses themselves, when averaged, reveal patterns similar to those of more experienced listeners. With experienced listeners,
statistically reliable data can be obtained in less time.

The effects of room position at low frequencies have been well documented in Chapters 12 and 13. It would be remarkable if these did not reveal themselves in subjective evaluations. This was tested in a second experiment where the loudspeakers were auditioned in two locations that would yield quite different sound signatures. Figure 17.14 shows that listeners responded to the differences

Summarizing, it is clear that knowing the identities of the loudspeakers under test can change subjective ratings.
■ They can change the ratings to correspond to presumed capabilities of the product, based on price, size, or reputation.
■ So strong is that attachment of “perceived” sound quality to the identity of the product that in sighted tests, listeners substantially ignored easily audible problems associated with loudspeaker location in the room and interactions with different programs.

These fidings mean that if one wishes to obtain candid opinions about how a loudspeaker sounds, the tests must be done blind. The good news is that if
the appropriate controls are in place, experienced and inexperienced listeners of both genders are able to deliver useful opinions. Inexperienced listeners simply take longer, more repetitions, to produce the same confidence levels in their ratings.

Other investigations agree. Bech (1992) observed that hearing levels of listeners should not exceed 15 dB at any audiometric frequency and that training is essential. He noted that most subjects reached a plateau of performance after only four training sessions. At that point, the test statistic FL should be used to identify the best listeners. Olive (2003), some of whose results are shown in Figure 17.6, compiled data on 268 listeners and found no important differences between the ratings of carefully selected and trained listeners and those from several other backgrounds, some in audio, some not, some with listening experience, some with none. There were, as shown in Figure 17.6, huge differences in the variability and scaling of the ratings, so selection and training have substantial benefi ts in time savings. Rumsey et al. (2005) also found strong similarities in ratings of audio quality between naive and experienced listeners, anticipating only a 10% error in predicting ratings of naïve listeners from those of experienced listeners.

In the end, the best news for the audio industry is that if something is done well, ordinary customers may actually recognize it. The pity is that there is no source of such unbiased listening test data for customers to go to for help in making purchasing decisions.

It is paradoxical that opinions of reviewers are held in special esteem. Why are these people in positions of such trust? The listening tests they perform violate the most basic rules of good practice for eliminating bias. They offer us no credentials, no proofs of performance, not even an audiogram to tell us that their hearing is not impaired. Perhaps it is the gift of literacy that is the differentiator, the ability to convey in a colorful turn of phrase some aspects of what they believe they hear. Adding insult to injury, as will be discussed in the following chapter, most reviews offer no meaningful measurements so that readers might form their own impressions.

Fortunately, it turns out that in the right circumstances most of us, including reviewers, possess “the gift”—the ability to form useful opinions about sound and to express them in ways that have real meaning. All that is needed to liberate the skill is the opportunity to listen in an unbiased frame of mind.
"
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post #74 of 90 Old 03-22-2013, 09:12 AM
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You sat down with John Atkinson in 2005 to discuss ABX.


Then in an interview with John Atkinson in 2007 J. Gordon Holt said, "As far as the real world is concerned, high-end audio lost its credibility during the 1980s, when it flatly refused to submit to the kind of basic honesty controls (double-blind testing, for example) that had legitimized every other serious scientific endeavor since Pascal. [This refusal] is a source of endless derisive amusement among rational people and of perpetual embarrassment for me, because I am associated by so many people with the mess my disciples made of spreading my gospel."


Was it satisfying to read Holt's comments?
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post #75 of 90 Old 03-22-2013, 09:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K Shep View Post

You sat down with John Atkinson in 2005 to discuss ABX.


Then in an interview with John Atkinson in 2007 J. Gordon Holt said, "As far as the real world is concerned, high-end audio lost its credibility during the 1980s, when it flatly refused to submit to the kind of basic honesty controls (double-blind testing, for example) that had legitimized every other serious scientific endeavor since Pascal. [This refusal] is a source of endless derisive amusement among rational people and of perpetual embarrassment for me, because I am associated by so many people with the mess my disciples made of spreading my gospel."

Was it satisfying to read Holt's comments?

It was far more satisfying to see him write something similar in SP Vol.5 No.5] (1982) in his review of the ABX Comparator.

By 2007 it was hard to take what he said seriously given how little postiive attention the magazine he founded had paid to it in the intervening 25 years.

Two words for SP: Lip service.
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post #76 of 90 Old 03-22-2013, 10:36 AM
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Quote:
It was far more satisfying to see him write something similar in SP Vol.5 No.5] (1982) in his review of the ABX Comparator.

By 2007 it was hard to take what he said seriously given how little postiive attention the magazine he founded had paid to it in the intervening 25 years.
Had SP followed that route in 1982, it would probably have been little more successful than Peter Aczel was with The Audio Critic. Selling the dream to people who wanted to dream was a wise business decision. Too bad it has served to reinforce so much stupidity.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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post #77 of 90 Old 08-23-2013, 08:23 PM
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I found one here I was looking into.
Way out of my price range but it is a product that supposedly bypasses output of iPod's DAC, the unit has
toslink optical, coaxial, or balanced AES/EBU outputs.
It comes with a (Modified Required) iPod. iPod must be modified and not all models it appears will work.
I didn't thoroughly read all the particulars due to the price, why continue to drool.
But it will be interesting to see the technology catch up or on to this, and the price point drop.

Here is the link.
http://www.msbtech.com/products/iLink.php?Page=platinumHome
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post #78 of 90 Old 10-06-2013, 05:48 AM
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If you want the best sound from a iPad docking station, bye the pure i20 and use a sound processor.

It's a kind of a DAC but you have several options and you can tune your audio sound so you don't have any drops and peaks

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post #79 of 90 Old 11-03-2013, 09:34 AM
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Can you guys get this one over in the US?

 

http://www.arcam.co.uk/products,rseries,ipod-docks,drDock.htm

 

Gets great reviews! I'm off to buy one in a couple of days time.

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post #80 of 90 Old 11-06-2013, 03:57 AM
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For $90, it's really hard to beat the Pure i20. I've had one for a couple months now and it works flawlessly.

larry

Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work. -- Thomas Alva Edison
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post #81 of 90 Old 11-06-2013, 07:18 AM
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For $90, it's really hard to beat the Pure i20. I've had one for a couple months now and it works flawlessly.

larry

It is a device that replaces a perfectly good DAC with a perfectly good DAC. It seems like the appropriate price would be "free"! ;-)
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post #82 of 90 Old 11-07-2013, 05:10 AM
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I am sorry Arny, I couldn't find a cheaper dock to do what I needed so I could avoid multiple conversions.

Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work. -- Thomas Alva Edison
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post #83 of 90 Old 11-07-2013, 10:39 AM
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Thought I'd just let you all know that I have now entered the world of DAC with a fabulous unit made by ARCAM called the drDock. I have a CD player but, more often than not, come home from work and simply plugged in my iPod to my amplifier via a 2-phono/3.5 jack, simply for convenience.

 

Then I read, last week, about DAC - hadn't even heard of it before but read up about the principle and understood why it has become a 'must have' piece of equipment for people who use digital music files stored on their laptops, desktops, iPads, iPhones and iPods.

 

So, I took my iPod and went off to see the happy people at Richer Sounds next to Liverpool Street station in London and had a demo. They played me tunes from my iPod (containing a mix of good quality downloads and some somewhat dodgy ones too!) firstly plugged straight in, then via the Cambridge Audio DACMagic and then the ARCAM drDock. What a difference!!!

 

The sound is so dynamic with a DAC. I preferred, and bought, the ARCAM (great deal £179 with high quality phono cables thrown in free), came home and plugged it in. Can't get enough of my sound now. It is absolutely wonderful, even the few poor quality tracks I have on there sound good.

 

Big thanks to Jules at Richer Sounds (who also gave me a pack of popping corn and a free umbrella - it was a horrible day) and to ARCAM for a great unit.

 

For the record (everyone seems to list their systems!), I use a 35 year old Sansui AU-217 Mk 2 amplifier which has been fully restored (new caps, transistors, everything) and sounds a dream (far better than most of the budget modern amplifiers I have listened to), driving a pair of Monitor Audio SR20 Gold Reference floor standing speakers.

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post #84 of 90 Old 11-07-2013, 11:18 AM
 
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firstly plugged straight in, then via the Cambridge Audio DACMagic and then the ARCAM drDock. What a difference!!!

The sound is so dynamic with a DAC.
Did you listen to them at matched volume level? If so, what device did you use for matching them?
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post #85 of 90 Old 11-07-2013, 11:24 AM
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I am sorry Arny, I couldn't find a cheaper dock to do what I needed so I could avoid multiple conversions.

In this day and age with DACs and ADCs with +/- 0.1 dB response or better so common, an extra conversion one way or the other, no biggie.

http://ethanwiner.com/aes/ has some conversion generation test files you can ABX for yourself using Foobar2000 and hear what I mean.
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post #86 of 90 Old 11-07-2013, 12:03 PM
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I used Jules, the Richer Sounds sales guy. He balanced them for me!

 

I DON"T KNOW - WE PLAYED THEM IN ALL THREE CONFIGURATIONS (DIRECT, DACMAGIC AND ARCAM). I used the same two or three tracks (ones I am familiar with) and tried each test back-to-back with the same track. Then I used my ears to discern the sound I liked best - that seemed like a good idea at the time - and bought said favourite.

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post #87 of 90 Old 11-07-2013, 01:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Roodpa View Post

I used Jules, the Richer Sounds sales guy. He balanced them for me!

I DON"T KNOW - WE PLAYED THEM IN ALL THREE CONFIGURATIONS (DIRECT, DACMAGIC AND ARCAM). I used the same two or three tracks (ones I am familiar with) and tried each test back-to-back with the same track. Then I used my ears to discern the sound I liked best - that seemed like a good idea at the time - and bought said favourite.

Did he use a meter and test tones to do the balancing? That is the only way. Sounds like he did it the old fashioned way - not at all!.

Differences in sound level can easily confuse small differences in the sound of different pieces of equipment. Depending on the test conditions there is a propensity to favor the loudest alternative.
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post #88 of 90 Old 11-13-2013, 03:17 PM
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Give me some credit, Arnold! I have ears, y'know, and they work!

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post #89 of 90 Old 11-13-2013, 04:21 PM
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Give me some credit, Arnold! I have ears, y'know, and they work!
Sure they do. But they're attached to your brain. That works too (or am I being too generous? smile.gif), but it doesn't work the way you think it does.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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post #90 of 90 Old 11-13-2013, 05:22 PM
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Give me some credit, Arnold! I have ears, y'know, and they work!

This may be quite a surprise to you, but your ears only work in a limited sort of way. All of the scientific research to date has failed to prove the existence of even just one pair of infallible ears.

Mcnarus above makes the valid point that ears are (usually) attached to a brain, and this is both the good news and the bad news. The brain can introduce another layer of errors related to perceptions and expectations.

Apparently you have zero experience with doing handiman projects where we customarily use measurements to center pictures on a wall, or level shelves, or build furniture, or install plumbing or whatever. Measurements play a critical role in those kinds of projects. You can almost always tell when someone shortcuts around making proper measurements.

I have a silly litele saying that goes something like this: "Set levels by ear and hear the level differences by ear". But, I've only been doing electrical and mechanical projects for about 60 years and maybe you can teach me something! ;-)
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