Stand alone DAC vs OPPO 105 - Page 7 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #181 of 226 Old 06-23-2014, 05:40 PM
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Originally Posted by db cookster View Post
when discover that you have to convince yourself that a) your hearing something different and b) your not completely sure that what your hearing is better, then i'd recommend that you keep your wife happy, by not adding more hardware and interconnection cables to your system. She will probably also like that fact you haven't spent anymore money on audio, either.
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post #182 of 226 Old 11-26-2014, 07:49 AM
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Hi folks,

My separate DAC sounds much better than the Oppo 105, that is the reason why I have 2 sources connected to the AVR. Oppo for movies via bitstream and the streamer/dac for music via analog cinch.

I originally wanted to have only one source, but the oppo unfortunately wasnt good enough.

The only possible solution could be an tuning for the oppo called G-Oppo, making it sounding as good as the best Linn players accoring to the scientist/developer, but I had no possibility to proof this up to now...

BR
Flo
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post #183 of 226 Old 11-26-2014, 10:44 AM
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^So does this mystery DAC have a name and a price?

~Dave

...Theater Room Setup...
JVC DLA-RS40-U... Oppo BDP-105D... Toshiba HD-XA2... Uverse VIP-2250... Roku Streaming Stick... Emotiva XPA-3... Onkyo TX-SR805
JBL LC2 (x3) ... JBL L820 (x6) ... SVS PB10-ISD (x2) ... SVS 20-39-PCI
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post #184 of 226 Old 11-26-2014, 12:32 PM
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^So does this mystery DAC have a name and a price?
I bet it's a Linn...

I'll be back later...


links::: 1.5RQ > digits > 1177a > OpenDRC-DI > DEQ2496 > DAC2 > KCT > FPB 350mcx > reQuest + Cheezewoofer Wattless Deluxe > Sweetspot
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post #185 of 226 Old 11-28-2014, 10:39 AM
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No but its a very special one called LeAudiophil. It is a tuned airport express and was developed by Hartmut Alt from the german open end forum. This DAC/Streamer is comparable to the big LaRosita from France (probably you will find more information concerning that one in the internet) but costs less. It plays in the league up to 10.000€ but costs only 10% of its rivals. I dont want to make advertisement but it really beats a lot of linn streamers, high end cd players and highest end dacs. If you need further infos I could send you the contact data or more info via pn.

So although it is no fair play comparing with the oppo but I wanted to highlight, that the oppo is not the highest possible end nor an all in one equipment for serious stereo enthusiasts! Unfortunately...

Anyone tested the Arcam UDP411 or the Electrocompaniet EMP 3?

BR
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post #186 of 226 Old 12-27-2014, 10:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flo2984 View Post
No but its a very special one called LeAudiophil. It is a tuned airport express and was developed by Hartmut Alt from the german open end forum. This DAC/Streamer is comparable to the big LaRosita from France (probably you will find more information concerning that one in the internet) but costs less. It plays in the league up to 10.000€ but costs only 10% of its rivals. I dont want to make advertisement but it really beats a lot of linn streamers, high end cd players and highest end dacs. If you need further infos I could send you the contact data or more info via pn.

So although it is no fair play comparing with the oppo but I wanted to highlight, that the oppo is not the highest possible end nor an all in one equipment for serious stereo enthusiasts! Unfortunately...

Anyone tested the Arcam UDP411 or the Electrocompaniet EMP 3?

BR
Flo
Florent, I could not find it.
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post #187 of 226 Old 12-28-2014, 02:46 AM
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post #188 of 226 Old 12-28-2014, 05:20 PM
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A big thank you for that. - Un gros merci pour cela.
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post #189 of 226 Old 12-28-2014, 07:51 PM
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Hello everyone,

I hope you guys don't mind me sharing my experiences, actually this thread is of great interest to me...

A few weeks ago, I was also deciding between a few DACs to hook my Mac mini to my Cambridge 840A S2, I ended up buying it's 840C companion, just because I found it for a very good price.

See... My stereo setup is very humble, and also I do not have the proper lingo to describe it, so please, remember Im a novice at this audio thingy..

For me ears, when I hooked the Mac Mini to the integrated at the first time, using a P2 to RCA cheap cable, the sound was very good, and in a hope to make it sound even better especially because I have some FLACs from HDTracks and B&W Sound of Society I wanted to try a DAC... (So in a search for a hero Bellaraphon, we created a monster, Chimera...)... LOL sorry for the joke... And yes I really liked the movie...

Anyways, I tried a few DACs hooked to my Mac Mini:

- Cambridge 840C (which I ended up buying);
- Dac Magic Plus;
- Oppo 105D;
- Electrocompaniet ECD-1 (used);
- Benchmark Dac-1 (used);

Comparing the mac mini onboard dac with the dedicated ones, rendered a very little difference, at least for my ears. Of course some of the tracks, especially the ones recorded at a higher volume showed some distortion when played thru mac mini and no distortion when played thru a Dac.

I was very disappointed because I could not really pin point the difference between DACs, they all sounded very nice, some sounded exactly the same, while some sounded a bit different and the difference was not even perceptible, I had to really stress my ears and hear the same music several times to notice a very subtle difference.

At some point I thought it was a Mac Mini limitation so I decided to hook a cheap and old 300 CD Pioneer Magazine CD player to the Dacs, and listened it again, all Dacs, one by one, and also the CD Player internal dac.. I found it very difficult to find the best souring DAC, it sounded almost the same.. Again the analog out from Pioneer sounded worse, as it had less definition, but.. It was very hard to notice...

Since I was comparing CD players, I decided to compare the 840C and the PD-F1007, the 840C sounded better, the audio is a bit more clear, I could hear the instruments with better accuracy, especially the higher tones. But again its very subtle...

Then I decided to bring my old Denon 2930ci and test its audio as a CD Player, didn't test SACD... Honestly, not sure if I am deaf but it is impossible for me to tell which sounded better the 840C and 2930ci, it does sound a bit different, but I am incapable for telling which one is better..

I also tested with a different kind of speakers, with the B&W 686, the B&W CM8 and a B&W 803D. The better the speaker the more apparent the diference between internal dac from the Mac Mini and the external DACs. But between the external DACs itself, well, I couldn't detect any difference.

Since the idea is to classify and tell my point of view using as a CD player:

- Oppo 105, sounded as it has better separation between instruments, as in.. The difference in sound from low to high is better;
- 840C, has more clarity, like... The violin sounded closer the violin;
- 2930ci sounded a lot more flat, not necessarily better;

As a DAC, using the Mac Mini as player.... well:

- The electrocompaniet is the best looking, with its transparent panel;
- The Oppo is the coolest one, and looked a bit more "techy";
- The Cambridge 840C matched better with my 840A;
- The Dac Magic Pro, lacks a remote control, so changing between sources is not really good;
- The Benchmark Dac-1 is the ugliest of all...

Seriously?

No difference, ZERO difference between DACS, so i ended up buying the 840C as my vendor was offering it cheaper than the Magic Plus... And I have to say that the Magic Pro and the USB input makes it a lovely combo for a mac mini.



Thanks!

Listening is the best experience.
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post #190 of 226 Old 12-31-2014, 09:52 AM
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Flo, it is time to look into doing a bias controlled comparison. It isn't particularly difficult with DACs or input sources. If you want to bring them here, I will prove to you that there is no difference at all in the way they sound, assuming neither one is defective.
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post #191 of 226 Old 12-31-2014, 09:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kate* View Post
Hello everyone,

I hope you guys don't mind me sharing my experiences, actually this thread is of great interest to me...

A few weeks ago, I was also deciding between a few DACs to hook my Mac mini to my Cambridge 840A S2, I ended up buying it's 840C companion, just because I found it for a very good price.

See... My stereo setup is very humble, and also I do not have the proper lingo to describe it, so please, remember Im a novice at this audio thingy..

For me ears, when I hooked the Mac Mini to the integrated at the first time, using a P2 to RCA cheap cable, the sound was very good, and in a hope to make it sound even better especially because I have some FLACs from HDTracks and B&W Sound of Society I wanted to try a DAC... (So in a search for a hero Bellaraphon, we created a monster, Chimera...)... LOL sorry for the joke... And yes I really liked the movie...

Anyways, I tried a few DACs hooked to my Mac Mini:

- Cambridge 840C (which I ended up buying);
- Dac Magic Plus;
- Oppo 105D;
- Electrocompaniet ECD-1 (used);
- Benchmark Dac-1 (used);

Comparing the mac mini onboard dac with the dedicated ones, rendered a very little difference, at least for my ears. Of course some of the tracks, especially the ones recorded at a higher volume showed some distortion when played thru mac mini and no distortion when played thru a Dac.

I was very disappointed because I could not really pin point the difference between DACs, they all sounded very nice, some sounded exactly the same, while some sounded a bit different and the difference was not even perceptible, I had to really stress my ears and hear the same music several times to notice a very subtle difference.

At some point I thought it was a Mac Mini limitation so I decided to hook a cheap and old 300 CD Pioneer Magazine CD player to the Dacs, and listened it again, all Dacs, one by one, and also the CD Player internal dac.. I found it very difficult to find the best souring DAC, it sounded almost the same.. Again the analog out from Pioneer sounded worse, as it had less definition, but.. It was very hard to notice...

Since I was comparing CD players, I decided to compare the 840C and the PD-F1007, the 840C sounded better, the audio is a bit more clear, I could hear the instruments with better accuracy, especially the higher tones. But again its very subtle...

Then I decided to bring my old Denon 2930ci and test its audio as a CD Player, didn't test SACD... Honestly, not sure if I am deaf but it is impossible for me to tell which sounded better the 840C and 2930ci, it does sound a bit different, but I am incapable for telling which one is better..

I also tested with a different kind of speakers, with the B&W 686, the B&W CM8 and a B&W 803D. The better the speaker the more apparent the diference between internal dac from the Mac Mini and the external DACs. But between the external DACs itself, well, I couldn't detect any difference.

Since the idea is to classify and tell my point of view using as a CD player:

- Oppo 105, sounded as it has better separation between instruments, as in.. The difference in sound from low to high is better;
- 840C, has more clarity, like... The violin sounded closer the violin;
- 2930ci sounded a lot more flat, not necessarily better;

As a DAC, using the Mac Mini as player.... well:

- The electrocompaniet is the best looking, with its transparent panel;
- The Oppo is the coolest one, and looked a bit more "techy";
- The Cambridge 840C matched better with my 840A;
- The Dac Magic Pro, lacks a remote control, so changing between sources is not really good;
- The Benchmark Dac-1 is the ugliest of all...

Seriously?

No difference, ZERO difference between DACS, so i ended up buying the 840C as my vendor was offering it cheaper than the Magic Plus... And I have to say that the Magic Pro and the USB input makes it a lovely combo for a mac mini.



Thanks!

The trick is to level match them accurately. One that is slightly louder than the other will sound better to most people. As soon as you start trying to make out an audible difference between similar sounding products, your biases take over and steer you to the one you prefer for non-sonic reason. Same offer for you. Bring your units and I'll prove that they all sound the same.
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post #192 of 226 Old 01-01-2015, 08:41 PM
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The trick is to level match them accurately. One that is slightly louder than the other will sound better to most people. As soon as you start trying to make out an audible difference between similar sounding products, your biases take over and steer you to the one you prefer for non-sonic reason. Same offer for you. Bring your units and I'll prove that they all sound the same.
Yeah!

But thats what I just said...

my own words: "No difference, ZERO difference between DACS, so i ended up buying the 840C as my vendor was offering it cheaper than the Magic Plus... And I have to say that the Magic Pro and the USB input makes it a lovely combo for a mac mini."

Listening is the best experience.
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post #193 of 226 Old 01-01-2015, 08:47 PM
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Happy New Year Kate ♪ ♫
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post #194 of 226 Old 01-02-2015, 05:49 AM
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Happy New Year Kate ♪ ♫
ty Robert!

Happy New Year for you too!!

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post #195 of 226 Old 01-11-2015, 02:54 AM
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Flo, it is time to look into doing a bias controlled comparison. It isn't particularly difficult with DACs or input sources. If you want to bring them here, I will prove to you that there is no difference at all in the way they sound, assuming neither one is defective.
You can believe me, there is a difference at any loudness.
The sound of the LeAudiophil is much more "smooth" or "analog" with less distrosion and better dynamic + resolution. The trick is that during daytime it fully runs on rechargeable battery so without any connection to the power supply and therefore without any distorsion in supply voltage.

BR
Flo
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post #196 of 226 Old 01-11-2015, 01:53 PM
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You can believe me, there is a difference at any loudness.
No, I don't believe you and why should I? Show me the bias controlled tests you've performed that show you can even differentiate between a mains powered supply and a battery one.
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post #197 of 226 Old 01-12-2015, 08:02 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Flo2984 View Post
You can believe me, there is a difference at any loudness.
The sound of the LeAudiophil is much more "smooth" or "analog" with less distrosion and better dynamic + resolution. The trick is that during daytime it fully runs on rechargeable battery so without any connection to the power supply and therefore without any distorsion in supply voltage.
Please provide an explanation why this alleged improvement necessarily makes an audible difference.

I freely admit that I listen to one of my battery-powered digital music players a lot, but I always thought the battery was for my convenience, not any sound quality advantage. The battery gives me cord-free operation at the cost of the usual inconveniences related to batteries.
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post #198 of 226 Old 01-12-2015, 09:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Flo2984 View Post
You can believe me, there is a difference at any loudness.
The sound of the LeAudiophil is much more "smooth" or "analog" with less distrosion and better dynamic + resolution. The trick is that during daytime it fully runs on rechargeable battery so without any connection to the power supply and therefore without any distorsion in supply voltage.

BR
Flo
Thanks but I know better. I have done the bias controlled tests.
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post #199 of 226 Old 01-12-2015, 02:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flo2984 View Post
You can believe me, there is a difference at any loudness.
The sound of the LeAudiophil is much more "smooth" or "analog" with less distrosion and better dynamic + resolution. The trick is that during daytime it fully runs on rechargeable battery so without any connection to the power supply and therefore without any distorsion in supply voltage.

BR
Flo
Do you know what a voltage regulator is, or how it can be used in low-power audio circuits?

Semi-retired Technology Insider.
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post #200 of 226 Old 01-13-2015, 11:52 AM
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Hi folks,

I was asked which gear I´m using that is so much better than the Oppo and I´ve told you. If you are interested please contact the appropriate developers.
I have no personal interest in convincing you about things you don´t want to believe. So believe what you want and be happy as you are, that makes you save a lot of money :-)

The idea is to eliminate any noise that an AC power supply can potentially introduce into the DAC supply voltage.
This can either be archieved by huge torodial power supplys and complex filters (LaRosita and other expensive stuff) or by battery (LeAudiophil). Additionally there are some other "tricks" inside...

Additionally you won´t have any GND issues due to different earth potentials (humming).

BR
Flo

Last edited by Flo2984; 01-14-2015 at 11:51 AM. Reason: Correction of some statements
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post #201 of 226 Old 01-13-2015, 03:00 PM
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The idea is to eliminate any noise that an AC power supply can potentially introduce into the amp.
This can either be archieved by huge power supplys and complex filters (LaRosita and other expensive stuff) or by battery (LeAudiophil). The battery is also a lot of faster in providing huge power in dynamic situations,...
You obviously have no electronics training or qualifications.
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post #202 of 226 Old 01-13-2015, 03:33 PM
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But appears to be very well-acquainted with audio boutique co. white papers and ad copy.


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post #203 of 226 Old 01-14-2015, 11:48 AM
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As I told before, I believe to my ears and they tell the truth no matter how it works!

As I bought the Oppo I wanted an all in one machine to replace also this DAC, there was no intention to stay with both of these machines as I believed like you all the commercials and tests saying oppo is the best also for serious stereo! But after some days I reconnected the LA and was astonished how much better it sounded. So you absolutely cant blame me to follow white papers lol! I also dont believe anything said by any audio boutique lol! The LA is an private project of some guy in the german open end board who knows what he is doing without cheating. It performs as good or even better as the biggest LaRosita but costs a lot less (no dealer, no import, no design, no commercials, more like an good old friend :-)

Right now I'm switching inbetween them and its an absolutely hearable difference: less distorsion and therefore a lot of more details and live feeling :-) not dependant of the loudness!

Oppo is like watching throug a window, LA like being right in front of the stage :-)

I will invite you for some testing if you are by accident nearby Stuttgart :-)

BR
Flo
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post #204 of 226 Old 01-14-2015, 11:53 AM
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You obviously have no electronics training or qualifications.
Omg yes, maybe I was too tired while writing this nonsense, sorry!
I mixed it with the batter pre amp and battery power amp :-)
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post #205 of 226 Old 05-02-2015, 05:58 PM
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Cool Oppo 105 vs stand alone ES9018 stereo dac

[QUOTE=arnyk;23073793]Quote:Originally Posted by IJB77

Hi – would really appreciate anyone’s thoughts on the following. I’m looking to upgrade my blu-ray player AND finally enter the era of digital music and am therefore looking for both a DAC and a new blu-ray player.

I will play the blu-ray through my stereo (I have a high end British amp and CD player). So here’s my dilemma. I had originally thought the OPPO 105 would be the perfect solution as in addition to the blu-ray it also has the DAC. However, the more I look into this and read about it, the more I’m pulled towards the need for a separate DAC and have heard that the DAC in the OPPO can’t compete with the stand-alone DACs of equal cost. The final issue is that I’m under a bit of pressure from my darling wife to keep my system as tidy as possible, and try to avoid any more “big boxes”.

So I guess my questions are:

1) How does the DAC in the OPPO 105 stack up against the sub $1,000 separate DACs?


The Oppo seems to use the same ESS DAC as this device:

http://www.benchmarkmedia.com/dac/dac2-hg


Actually the ES9018 contains 8 dacs or channels and the 105 uses each one separately for surround sound while two channel implementations like the Gustard X-12 ($500) uses four of then in each channel for lower noise and distortion and the highest end Es9018 based dacs like the Benchmark Dac2 ($2000) use two ES9018 chips using eight internal dac channels per side for even better audio quality (it never ends for audiophiles). That said the 105 is reputed to be very good but perhaps lacking a slight bit in the base? If you mostly watch movies or have just a receiver to drive your speakers it or the 105D are not only great blu-ray players they are also very good dacs. The 105 also has the advantage of outputting sacd based dsd audio via its analog outputs etc, It's sort of a Swiss army knife. I would look at the 105D for a little more money but if you have a great amp and speakers along with a well trained ear a better dac might be worth it.
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post #206 of 226 Old 05-02-2015, 10:02 PM
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^^ All of the above will have noise and non linearities so far below the level they can be heard, that you can safely stop obsessing and buy the cheapest.
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post #207 of 226 Old 05-02-2015, 11:55 PM
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Smile Dac quality shoud follow system needs and quality

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Originally Posted by A9X-308 View Post
^^ All of the above will have noise and non linearities so far below the level they can be heard, that you can safely stop obsessing and buy the cheapest.
Nothing is perfect not even a really good dac like my Ross Martin Audio Super Beast with dual mono pcm1794a dac chips and top of the line opamps (About $350+ shipping direct) will make a quality 16 bit recording sound like new vinyl on a superb turntable if you have the amp and speakers for it. I suspect that many dacs can do that but that's simply the cheapest one I know that can. I also have a heavily DIY modified Bedesford 7510 single chip dac powered by a ultra low noise $400 12v linear supply that sounds great but not as great. Benchmark, Chord and Gustard etc. make great high quality dacs too. The ES9018 is one of the best chips now but it needs very careful implementation. Your choice depends on what you're willing to spend and the quality of the rest of your set up, your listening needs and ability. imho.
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post #208 of 226 Old 05-03-2015, 02:03 AM
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Smile Sorry screwed up my last post let me clarify please

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Nothing is perfect not even a really good dac like my Ross Martin Audio Super Beast with dual mono pcm1794a dac chips and top of the line opamps (About $350+ shipping direct) will make a quality 16 bit recording sound like new vinyl on a superb turntable if you have the amp and speakers for it. I suspect that many dacs can do that but that's simply the cheapest one I know that can. I also have a heavily DIY modified Bedesford 7510 single chip dac powered by a ultra low noise $400 12v linear supply that sounds great but not as great. Benchmark, Chord and Gustard etc. make great high quality dacs too. The ES9018 is one of the best chips now but it needs very careful implementation. Your choice depends on what you're willing to spend and the quality of the rest of your set up, your listening needs and ability. imho.

I meant that my Ross Martin Audio Super Beast sounds better or as good as a great record, cartridge and turntable with good properly compressed 16 bit cd's etc. and that I believe that many really good dacs can do that now if tied into
an excellent amp and speakers.


I believe that specs alone don't make a great anything although they can be quite useful as indications. Your own poor ears should always decide in the end.


There are many that believe with good reason that tubes are the best amplifiers, alnico magnets make the best speakers, vinyl or tape the best media, and the pure r2r ladder pcm1704 the was the best dac chip, specs be dammed! Beauty of sound is in the ear of the beholder not the specs sheet.


Much depends on efficiency levels and proper equipment matching etc. But to reiterate for most non super serious but very good audiophile quality home theater set ups an Oppo 105D is an excellent choice (105 is slightly inferior (video quality and no DSD on USB input) and now discontinued according to Crutchfield)


As for me I did away with multi channel years ago as I mainly listen to music and would probably go with the Gustard X-12 or another Ross Martin and a good Blu-ray player that did SACD's and audio real well but didn't break the bank, perhaps another Oppo or a Pioneer. But my old Pany BD matches my 2D 50" plasma just fine and my Asus STX, an internal dac, computers coax output to the Beast works well with my older flacs and better with most of the newer and remastered ones serving my new Crown XLS-2500 class D amp and DIY modified NHT 3.3 speakers.
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post #209 of 226 Old 05-03-2015, 02:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tblewy View Post
I believe that specs alone don't make a great anything although they can be quite useful as indications.
Says a non-engineer who quite obviously does not know how to read or interpret them properly.

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Your own poor ears should always decide in the end.
Your ears are mere transducers: It's your brain with all it's biasses and belief system that does the processing and interpretation.


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There are many that believe with good reason that tubes are the best amplifiers, alnico magnets make the best speakers, vinyl or tape the best media, and the pure r2r ladder pcm1704 the was the best dac chip
Then there are good engineers.

You have obviously bought deeply into the audiophile juju, so purchase what you can justify to yourself and enjoy it. Before you get the bug to make another meaningless change of gear. You really don't need anyone else to justify your purchases to you.
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Smile Wrong I am an Engineer.

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Says a non-engineer who quite obviously does not know how to read or interpret them properly.

Your ears are mere transducers: It's your brain with all it's biasses and belief system that does the processing and interpretation.


Then there are good engineers.

You have obviously bought deeply into the audiophile juju, so purchase what you can justify to yourself and enjoy it. Before you get the bug to make another meaningless change of gear. You really don't need anyone else to justify your purchases to you.

Now long retired I have worked for IBM, GE and Philips Electronics and have designed and repaired equipment for many years. I certainly know how to read specs and schematics and how to find my way through the BS they often slant you to believing.


I use specs as a starting point and loose reference only. I have often redesigned/modified my own already good audio equipment for years in order to improve the sound.


Much of the concept for the first Fluke ScopeMeter was mine.


I know that the only true test is in the real world with anything and that the engineering credo KISS (keep it simple stupid) is the best starting approach. IMHO
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