Spec an Audiophile PC With Me Using CAPS 3.0 as a Starting Point, Adding HDMI for Multi-Channel Hi Rez Audio!!! - Page 19 - AVS Forum
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post #541 of 805 Old 03-22-2014, 01:59 PM
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Originally Posted by HFGuy View Post

Cool, so you might know the name of our sister company.... Starts with a Gen____ smile.gif

Gennum? Well known in the video industry. They have great product lines focused on the pro video industry. I know they are on the leading edge of 6gbs HDSDI interface parts for 4K. I used quite a few GS1504 and 1508 chips back in the early 2000s for some custom HDSDI switching gear I built for DirecTV.

I will say though that National (now TI) have cut into your pro video market a bit with lower cost products and I have since used them as well. But IMPO, if you want quality, buy Gennum.

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post #542 of 805 Old 03-22-2014, 02:05 PM
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Yup. We tend to do the higher end stuff but we have done some cooperation on some projects as well. Our stuff is enterprise level computing and their is A/V but guess what ... we speak the same language.
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post #543 of 805 Old 03-22-2014, 02:06 PM
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Edorr made a comment a few months ago as to how good the soundtrack on the last StarTrek bluray was. Well we mastered that from the DI all the way to the Bluray. I can't even count all the stock HP Z800 workstations that audio and video had gone through. yet here we cliam that a generic PC is no good for audio?

P.S. The reason that more mastering, broadcast and film industry people don't participate here is that the audiophile accessory market is viewed largely as a joke by industry professionals.

I hope your engineering skills are better than your memory. Your mixing up your antagonists. I have never seen that movie. I'm the shunyata cable guy, not the soundtrack guy.

But I repeat my question, if this is all a joke, what are you doing here other than being an arrogant troll?
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post #544 of 805 Old 03-22-2014, 02:27 PM
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I hope your engineering skills are better than your memory. Your mixing up your antagonists. I have never seen that movie. I'm the shunyata cable guy, not the soundtrack guy.

But I repeat my question, if this is all a joke, what are you doing here other than being an arrogant troll?

I'll double check that. It may have been someone else.

I thought this thread was about setting up media servers? I am looking at JRiver myself. But when I see that crap about pumps and fans in a PC compromising digital audio quality (other than acoustical noise) I will call it out. Ditto that for PC upgrades that promise audio improvement when I know based on engineering experience are bunk. Not everybody that may want to build a media server desires or has funds to waste on snake oil.

I have three media servers. HD and SD are seperate VLC based because the video cards are so different. I run an HDSDI equipped Nvidia 4000 for HD and the SD server runs an SDI modified old 480i Creative Labs hardware decoder card. I then run the SD SDI through a Digital Vision image processor and onto a Teranex upconverter to 1080P. The third server holds uncompressed SDI copies of my laser disc concert collection. I want that in native form as converting to DVD MPEG is a downgrade.

I have two 30TB SAS arrays running under UNRAID and the third laser disk server has 16TB on board storage with a hardware RAID1 card. These are all enterprise grade sevrvers, older 2000's technology but perfectly adequate for compressed HD and uncompressed SD use. They were EWASTE from work. So I guess you could say my HT media servers are made from junk wink.gif But I did buy new 2010 or newer motherboards and drives so the EWASTE boils down to the case, disk backplane, and power supply.

So I do have quite an interest in media servers and should be deemed qualified to participate in this thread.

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post #545 of 805 Old 03-22-2014, 05:02 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Glimmie View Post


P.S. The reason that more mastering, broadcast and film industry people don't participate here is that the audiophile accessory market is viewed largely as a joke by industry professionals.

 

So why do you spend so much time here on AVS since its a "joke"?

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post #546 of 805 Old 03-22-2014, 06:29 PM
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So why do you spend so much time here on AVS since its a "joke"?

Read it again. I didn't say AVS was a joke. I said the professional AV crowd largely thinks the audiophile accessory market is a joke. Want to discuss McIntosh, Theta, or other top of the scale brands is probably fine with them too. It's the accessory market that is wrought with so much fraud.

This was a thread about audio servers. Until it veered off on the snake oil track that said fans and pumps cause noise in the decoded signal from an all digital server. Of course not to worry because the party making that statement sells garage built audio servers that don't have said issues.

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post #547 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 03:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Glimmie View Post

Read it again. I didn't say AVS was a joke. I said the professional AV crowd largely thinks the audiophile accessory market is a joke. Want to discuss McIntosh, Theta, or other top of the scale brands is probably fine with them too. It's the accessory market that is wrought with so much fraud.

This was a thread about audio servers. Until it veered off on the snake oil track that said fans and pumps cause noise in the decoded signal from an all digital server. Of course not to worry because the party making that statement sells garage built audio servers that don't have said issues.

"Accessories" being what exactly?

On your last point, I thought it was an individual that said it. In any event, I guess you suggest Bryston is "garage built"…

Again, it sounds to me that "professional AV crowd" have a chip on their shoulder over professional EEs heading into high end consumer audio.

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post #548 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 05:25 AM
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Here is a really interesting video about that topic

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BYTlN6wjcvQ

I absolutely agree with Ethan in this regard. I do find it fascinating that people can fret over, for example, whether a file is stored as FLAC versus WAVE and yet they've never picked up a tool like REW and analysed their room response which is by far the biggest determinant of what they hear. As soon as you start looking at room acoustics a lot of worries about other things disappear into oblivion.

Hence my post #490.

PS: with respect to room acoustics, there are also many that think filtering (be it Dirac or others) is a cure all. It isn't. Ideally, one should try to do as much as practical physically with the room first. That said, I'm thoroughly looking forward to overlaying Dirac Live on top of my acoustic investment.

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post #549 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by stevekale View Post

"Accessories" being what exactly?

On your last point, I thought it was an individual that said it. In any event, I guess you suggest Bryston is "garage built"…

No, Bryston is an established brand, in fact it is very popular in recording studios. Bryston is my brand of choice when I need higher power like in a large timing or screening theater. I don't like QSC but then some of my piers have the opposite opinion. In the end they both are good products. And like I just told Steve, McIntosh, Theta, ADA, and other top brands are also great gear. It's these tiny companies that market products around issues and theories that have no founding in established principles.

1) Bybee stuff
2) Garden hose power cords on a CD player
3) interconnects based on magic materials
4) clock upgrades that in most cases actually increase the jitter rather than lower it.
5) audiophile fuses
6) rocks, pebbles, Marigo dots and similar products
7) etc
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Again, it sounds to me that "professional AV crowd" have a chip on their shoulder over professional EEs heading into high end consumer audio.

You have this backwards. The entertainment industry being a multi-billion dollar Wall Street level industry tends to place traditional standards on engineering staffing. There are in fact more exceptions in our industry versus say Boeing, but formal engineering credentials are well received by the major players which is the traditional studios, networks, and top service facilities.

The legitimate high end audio business also employs accredited electrical engineers. They have to. You can't develop a Theta or Trinnov for example without that experience and training. Now I do find the technology heads of some high end consumer audio companies not to be formal accredited EE's but one can gain such knowledge on their own over the years. And no doubt they have freshly trained engineers under them to do the low level design. The top people in any engineering structure are the idea people. They come up with the product definition and specifications. The hard core circuit and code design is most often put in the hands of the junior engineers that have the latest technology under their belts but lack the vision and market expereince. The larger the company, the more this structure is followed.

Then we get to the charlatans in the audiophile accessory market. The majority of the people behind these products have no formal engineering experience and can hardly afford to hire skilled staff under them. Furthermore you can't expect some young recently graduated engineer to align with a such an operation and put their name behind products they know full well are snake oil. Why do that when there are so many legitimate options open to you. If I ultimately want to secure a position as an EE with Belden, I sure as hell don't want Audioquest on my resume.

The point here is that very few if any true EEs go into the audiophile accessory market. As those that do are shunned by the established brotherhood. Unless they can come up with proper evidence that is repeatable they are not going to be taken seriously by the EE community.

This has nothing to do the the entertainment industry vs the aerospace industry. Or the legitimate high end consumer audio products industry vs the others either. It the charlatans vs the established scientific community, no matter what the product.

And on the garage term, I realize that HP started in a garage. But that was a different time in history and furthermore their products were designed and built on solid engineering principles. That's why the grew into billion dollar companies. Ditto that for Apple and Microsoft. But the reason many of the audiophile companies are tiny with no future growth in sight is because their products simply don't work. So they are limited to their cult followers. No venture capital firm is going to invest in such operations because they do their homework. The have consultants on tap that quickly expose the scam.

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post #550 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 12:19 PM
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Rant over?

I will let you debate the merits of my Juli@ clock upgrade directly with Brent at Fidelity Audio here in the UK. Let me know the answer. He is the designer and owner of the company.

Oh, and I hope the previous suggestion that most DACs are nothing other than simple deployments of data sheet application notes doesn't apply to my Theta Xtremes...

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post #551 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 01:15 PM
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Oh, and I hope the previous suggestion that most DACs are nothing other than simple deployments of data sheet application notes doesn't apply to my Theta Xtremes...

That doesn't necessarily make it better.
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post #552 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 01:16 PM
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Rant over?

I will let you debate the merits of my Juli@ clock upgrade directly with Brent at Fidelity Audio here in the UK. Let me know the answer. He is the designer and owner of the company.

Fidelity Audio seems to be a sales outfit that does make a few accessories, power cords being one of them of course. I looked at the clock upgrade page. As usual just a bunch of audiophile sales hype. Where are the measured specifications so I can make an informed decision as to if their clock boards will improve my current jitter and noise margins? Just looking at the photos of the boards all I see are active power supply filters and some standard clock modules. But I can't judge if the board layout is properly done and the jitter is indeed low without test equipment.

Don't you at least want to see some quantified before and after measurements of a product with this mod installed before buying it? And how exactly is that clock board attached to the product? wires of a few inches tacked into the OEM DVD palyer board. I spoke about that above. If you want really low jitter, that is about the worst thing you could do - that is run uncontrolled impedance wiring like that.

I must say you picked a great example. Fidelity Audio is exactly the type of "garage" operation I am being critical of. Now he is on the right track, that is trying to clean up the clocks power supply and possibly using a tighter spec oscillator. But is he qualified to engineer something like that? Or did he just jump on the audiophile jitter bandwagon and slap together some board with limited electronics knowledge.
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Oh, and I hope the previous suggestion that most DACs are nothing other than simple deployments of data sheet application notes doesn't apply to my Theta Xtremes...

Didn't I list Theta at least twice as a respected high end manufacture? I would expect them to go beyond the basic application circuit or at least use proper high speed digital design techniques in the implementation. That's where many of these esoteric brands fall short. Theta is not an esoteric brand. They have an established product base and distribution network behind them.

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post #553 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 01:51 PM
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It's hilarious. Like inviting two chemists to a wine tasting event. They show up fully equipped with lab testing equipment, and dismiss the best tasting wine as a fraud, produced by charlatans. The tasters are suckers susceptible to placebo effect. Our scientists uniquely qualified to identify the best wine cannot measure the difference between 2 buck chuck and a Chateaux Margaux - at least they cannot correlate the difference in chemical composition with "better taste", so the whole thing must be joke. The cannot even get a repeatable measurement between the Margaux 2007 and 2008, and worse still, the wine measures different after 1 hour exposure to oxygen than right out of the bottle. What happened to sound chemistry.
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post #554 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 01:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Glimmie, from your "rant" above, do you consider the engineers at Berkeley Audio the same credential wise as Bryston, Theta, Trinnov, etc. Berkeley Audio designs and manufactures DACs, USB to DA Converters, etc.

"Doug Winsor" used to troll at some AV Forums as "Steve Bruzonsky"! My home theater at:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1158431
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post #555 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 02:09 PM
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Originally Posted by edorr View Post

It's hilarious. Like inviting two chemists to a wine tasting event. They show up fully equipped with lab testing equipment, and dismiss the best tasting wine as a fraud, produced by charlatans. The tasters are suckers susceptible to placebo effect. Our scientists uniquely qualified to identify the best wine cannot measure the difference between 2 buck chuck and a Chateaux Margaux - at least they cannot correlate the difference in chemical composition with "better taste", so the whole thing must be joke. The cannot even get a repeatable measurement between the Margaux 2007 and 2008, and worse still, the wine measures different after 1 hour exposure to oxygen than right out of the bottle. What happened to sound chemistry.

It's not the same thing. A report of chemical composition does not relate to how something tastes to someone. Nor does an acoustic profile of a speaker shows how it sounds to someone. And I would imagine individual body chemistry has some effect on wine taste. Isn't that why you wine guys always spit it on the floor of the wine cellar? Did they measure that too?

But should a wine maker make a scientific claim that his wine contains x% of whatever and this contributed to the excellent taste, well we can measure if the wine does in fact have x% of said chemical. And under FTC food regualtions, it better have!

Jitter is a measurable quantity. If a vendor claims his clock upgrade improves jitter, we can measure that claim. If he says his clock upgrade simply sounds better than another to his ears, that's not measurable.

This Fidelity Audio guy says his clock upgrades offer lower jitter. OK I want to see it using standard electronic measurements. What's wrong with that?

P.S. I'm not a chemist or a wine specialist. But I'll bet a chemist can tell you exactly why the wine changes taste after an hour exposure to oxygen. He can't honestly say if that taste is good or bad to you, but he or she can tell you what changed chemically and by what percentage, quite accurately I would imagine.

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post #556 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 02:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

Glimmie, from your "rant" above, do you consider the engineers at Berkeley Audio the same credential wise as Bryston, Theta, Trinnov, etc. Berkeley Audio designs and manufactures DACs, USB to DA Converters, etc.

I'll have to look into them, I can't say either way at this time. I do know Berkley has a good long standing reputation and have heard of them in some niche recording studio applications.

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post #557 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 02:50 PM
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Fidelity Audio seems to be a sales outfit that does make a few accessories, power cords being one of them of course. I looked at the clock upgrade page. As usual just a bunch of audiophile sales hype. Where are the measured specifications so I can make an informed decision as to if their clock boards will improve my current jitter and noise margins? Just looking at the photos of the boards all I see are active power supply filters and some standard clock modules. But I can't judge if the board layout is properly done and the jitter is indeed low without test equipment.

Yes the oscillators on the Juli@ are cheap:

http://www.skctech.com/products_detail/&productId=cf98c7f7-2aa1-476c-b412-2665c34ba57c.html

Give Brent a call. He is a good guy. You can ask him directly.

In the interim, from the website: for the Micro Clock - Measured Jitter less than 2PS (per output). The stats for the other clocks are there as well.

Plus on-board voltage regulation. The runs to the ESI board are about 7mm. The clock sits on the part labelled ESI. The wires you see are for power supply input…but I would have thought that obvious and clear even from the low resolution photos.

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I must say you picked a great example. Fidelity Audio is exactly the type of "garage" operation I am being critical of. Now he is on the right track, that is trying to clean up the clocks power supply and possibly using a tighter spec oscillator. But is he qualified to engineer something like that? Or did he just jump on the audiophile jitter bandwagon and slap together some board with limited electronics knowledge.

Like I said, give him a call. I think you'll find him very knowledgable. He is very critical of some of his competition. You guys might even get along.

PS: I use one of his SPower regulators to regular my 12V power supply.
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Didn't I list Theta at least twice as a respected high end manufacture? I would expect them to go beyond the basic application circuit or at least use proper high speed digital design techniques in the implementation. That's where many of these esoteric brands fall short. Theta is not an esoteric brand. They have an established product base and distribution network behind them.

Quite obviously, this comment was not in response to you but rather HFGuy

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post #558 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 03:01 PM
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steve perhaps you could provide me with some details on the theta dac. I managed to find an image of it, and indeed its a sexy bit of PCB porn, but no real details. If i had to guess it looks like a R2R dac built with discrete components. It also looks like its been discontinued ...... so they have something better. Its tricky for me to take Theta too serious when they take an Hypex Ncore amp, slap on a linear supply (something the ncore designer says doesn't matter) and put it into the usual theta great looking chassis and charge $6k.
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post #559 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 03:10 PM
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Yes the oscillators on the Juli@ are cheap:

http://www.skctech.com/products_detail/&productId=cf98c7f7-2aa1-476c-b412-2665c34ba57c.html

Yes you can find them at Digikey as well. But other than monetary cost, what exactly makes them cheap? What is the jitter spec of the OEM Juli card?
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Give Brent a call. He is a good guy. You can ask him directly.

In the interim, from the website: for the Micro Clock - Measured Jitter less than 2PS (per output). The stats for the other clocks are there as well.

Plus on-board voltage regulation. The runs to the ESI board are about 7mm. The clock sits on the part labelled ESI. The wires you see are for power supply input…but I would have thought that obvious and clear even from the low resolution photos.
Like I said, give him a call. I think you'll find him very knowledgable. He is very critical of some of his competition. You guys might even get along.

Well I have my jitter problems under control, both at home and work. So I really don't need any of his products at this time.

But here is the glaring question: How does 2ps factor into intermod distortion in a digital device? How bad is this on the stock Juli card versus the improved clock of 2ps? And at what level relative to the noise floor of the device are the intermod products from the 'cheap' clock? If the upgraded clock improves the jitter intermod products from -140db to -190db and your system noise floor is -110db, what's the point?

Without all the numbers nobody can say if these upgrades make a performance improvement that is audible. In my example above it isn't even close. And of course this assumes the upgrade does in fact offer lower jitter in the first place.

Now if someone wants to upgrade their box based on advertising adjectives and it gives them a warm feeling telling them their rig now sounds better, go for it. But some of us at home and certainly the pro industry need more than that when selecting quality products.

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post #560 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 03:22 PM
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Correct me if I am wrong but these days most quality DACs are oversampling or delta sigma. If that is true than these clock sources are only a reference for an internal clean up PLL, in which cause the jitter performance of these clocks is much reduced.
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post #561 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 04:31 PM - Thread Starter
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steve perhaps you could provide me with some details on the theta dac. I managed to find an image of it, and indeed its a sexy bit of PCB porn, but no real details. If i had to guess it looks like a R2R dac built with discrete components. It also looks like its been discontinued ...... so they have something better. Its tricky for me to take Theta too serious when they take an Hypex Ncore amp, slap on a linear supply (something the ncore designer says doesn't matter) and put it into the usual theta great looking chassis and charge $6k.

To each their own.

I & some others here really like the Theta DACS, in particular the Gen VIII Series 3. Just do a Google search and you can find reviews as well as info from the Theta website.

Although doesn't sound like you are particularly interested in Theta gear from your comments on the new Prometheus. Well, I had five Bryston 7BST for years; then five Theta Enterprise monoblocks; then switched out two of the Enterprises for Theta Citadel 1.5 monoblocks for several years; recently switched to five of Theta's new Prometheus monoblocks and just luv' em. I've lived with and listened to this gear so I'm quite comfortable with my decisions on how to spend my $$ even if some like you are not. HA!

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http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1158431
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post #562 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by HFGuy View Post

.... Its tricky for me to take Theta too serious when they take an Hypex Ncore amp, slap on a linear supply (something the ncore designer says doesn't matter) and put it into the usual theta great looking chassis and charge $6k.

Is that what they did? Use an OEM class D board? I thought they built it from the component level. But if not it explains a few things I have been wondering about Theta. I know they OEM their HDMI cards and there's nothing wrong with that especially with the licensing issues. But I thought their audio circuitry was all in house.

And I too questioned the linear power supply Theta chose as well. When you look at how a class D amp works, it's clear that a switch mode power is the ideal choice. You already have an RFI/EMI issue to deal with from the amp circuit so what's a little more from the SMPS? And as the prime motivation for class D is efficiency and weight, why use a power supply which is not very efficient?

This is classic audiophile marketing. Theta had to do something to set the product apart from others. So it chose a linear power supply because in some audio applications it does make a positive difference. Just not so much in a class D amp but audiophiles have been trained by marketing types that linear power supplies are good and switch mode power supplies are cheap and bad. So Theta built to the market demands.

I have some thoughts and questions as to this recent push towards class D amps in high end audio. Theta is not the only one going this route. Other high end brands are as well. It makes sense for sub woofers and possibly surround channels but I'm not so sure for the main LCR speakers. But I'll start another thread for that.

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post #563 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 04:42 PM
 
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Is that what they did? Use an OEM class D board? I thought they built it from the component level. But if not it explains a few things I have been wondering about Theta. I know they OEM their HDMI cards and there's nothing wrong with that especially with the licensing issues. But I thought their audio circuitry was all in house.

 

From the Theta  Digital website:

 

thetadigital.com/prometheus_amplifier_info.shtml

 

"Manna From the Gods

A collaboration between Dave Reich, Theta Digital’s chief engineer and Bruno Putzeys, class D "Wonderkind" of Hypex fame, Prometheus marks a fundamental departure in our amplifier philosophy. Rather than design amplifiers that highlight the amp/speaker interface and demand careful consideration when choosing the corresponding transducer, Prometheus is completely load agnostic.The frequency response is load invariant. Harmonic distortion, at less than 0.01% at 500 watts RMS full-band at 4 ohms is virtually non-existent. The same is true for IMD.

 

"First Watt" advocates will happily note THD+N at one watt is lower by a factor of 10: < 0.001%. Notable also is the fact that Prometheus shares with its other N-Core 1200 brethren the lowest output impedance (and highest damping factor) of any amplifier every built. To say that Prometheus exerts the iron-hand of speaker control is a masterpiece of understatement.

 

In true Theta Digital tradition, Reich and cohorts researched virtually every possible power source before settling on a huge linear supply. For proof, one need only look at the immense 1.44kva toroidal power transformer. Such a dramatic power source insures that Prometheus can deliver full output for any desired duration. All day and all night? No problem.

 

Parts quality continues in adherence to strict Theta hierarchy. Use only the best parts: Check. Use them the right way: Check. Make the amplifier absolutely beautiful both inside and out: Check in Greek mythology, Prometheus stole fire from the gods and gave it to mankind. In our Theta Digital mythology, Reich and Putzeys stole amplifier perfection from the gods and gave it to music lovers everywhere."

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post #564 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 04:44 PM
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Lots of variables. I am somewhat banking on the new PS Audio DirectStream being completely immune to quality of the digital input as they say it is (read up on PS Audio website). If performing as promised, I'll get three of those and never worry about noise / source jitter and so on ever again. I have one on order.

If I don't get the PS Audio DAC's and the noisy PSU in my Video / MCH server compromises SQ on MCH SACD with my current DACs (1 x MSB + 2 x NAD M51), I'll probably end up with one optimized battery powered MCH / 2 Channel audio only server, and one MCH Powerful video server. I'd leave a little bit of audio performance on the table for Blu Ray concert movies, but so be it. I may also end up running all MCH Audio / Video content on the powerfull server, and run asynch USB from a 2 channel only audio server.

First priority is just getting out of trobleshooting mode and getting servers that just work, so I can focus on comparing sound quality again. The journey does indeed never end .....

Edorr,

please forgive the noobie question - but the PC approach has always intrigued me. I was curious about using multiple 2-channel DACs instead of a single multi-channel DAC. Are there not timing issues with using multiple devices - especially multiple devices from different manufacturers? How are all the DACs kept in sync?

Regards,

Ash
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post #565 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 04:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

recently switched to five of Theta's new Prometheus monoblocks and just luv' em. I've lived with and listened to this gear so I'm quite comfortable with my decisions on how to spend my $$ even if some like you are not. HA!

Steve I followed that thread of yours too with great interest. I guess my point is that the credit for the great sounding amp goes to Bruno more so than Theta. I plan to build some of my own ncore amps, which is why I enjoyed your upgrade thread.
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post #566 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 05:06 PM
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Originally Posted by skirmash View Post

Edorr,

please forgive the noobie question - but the PC approach has always intrigued me. I was curious about using multiple 2-channel DACs instead of a single multi-channel DAC. Are there not timing issues with using multiple devices - especially multiple devices from different manufacturers? How are all the DACs kept in sync?

Regards,

Ash

Ash, when you use three different DACs there may in theory be timing issue, in particular when you mix and match DACs from different manufacturers. First, each DAC may have different processing delay, and then there are clock synch issues. Using Dirac or other DRC across all channels compensates for this (through time alignment), however, Dirac measures at 48/24 and delays are different at different sample rates.

This is the theory. The reality is, just putting three DACs downstream from a HTPC with Lynx card just sounds better than anything else I tried (which is a lot). If you want to keep all channels in synch, you should however get the Exasound DAC (phenomal value I think), or you can stack three connected Myteks, running off the same clock. If you have $40K to spend you can also get three Playback Designs DAC, which can be connected so they run off the same clock. However, for now this only works with the transport, not a MCH feed from an HTPC. This is an interesting concept, but in its infancy. The reality is an HTPC running Jriver takes the need for an SSP away, and you can get much better downstream 2 channel DACs than anything available in an SSP, for less money. For example, if you get three NAD M51s you have 6 channels of current state of the art technology for $6K list (street price is less). You can volume control the stack with RS232. Hard to beat, but again Mytek and Exasound are designed to operate in 6 channel mode, NAD is not.
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post #567 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 05:11 PM
 
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Steve I followed that thread of yours too with great interest. I guess my point is that the credit for the great sounding amp goes to Bruno more so than Theta. I plan to build some of my own ncore amps, which is why I enjoyed your upgrade thread.

 

 

Yes and No.

 

Yes, Theta and David Reich were so impressed with Bruno's hypex n-core module that they used it as the basis for the Prometheus.

 

But Dave Reich did a lot of work designing the analog power supply with a big toroid so that the amp sounds the way Dave wants it to sound. And we don't know the proprietary specifics of associated stuff Dave did to result in the final product.

 

We might surmise that since Theta announced the Prometheus several years ago, yet took extra years for it to become commercially available, that it took Dave a long time to get the amp to sound how he likes it - and how I like it!!!@@@@@@

 

 

Clearly without Bruno's design, the Prometheus would be probably another great sounding Class AB monoblock. But with Bruno's design and Dave Reich's taking the bull by the horns, I am so very happy with the sonics!

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post #568 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 05:43 PM
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Steve fair enough.


Edorr what about the Lynx Aurora over thunderbolt ? Let Jriver do the volume control.
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post #569 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 06:02 PM
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But Dave Reich did a lot of work designing the analog power supply with a big toroid so that the amp sounds the way Dave wants it to sound. And we don't know the proprietary specifics of associated stuff Dave did to result in the final product.

Steve, you're reading a lot more into this power transformer than there is. OK so he used a large oversized toroid, by a factor of three based on the amps power output capacity. Nothing wrong with that as long a people are willing to pay the extra costs but it's not necessary in a class D amp. And furthermore there is nothing all that complex with an unregulated linear power supply. Just as you are speculating he choose a "big toroid" for sonics, I am speculating he chose it to better market the product. The added cost in their pricing model is miniscule.

I will further speculate that the delay with the products introduction was working on the inherent problem with class D amplifiers not that class A,B,G, and AB don't have their issues either. That problem is that a basic class D amplifier is only flat at one specific frequency and load impedance. That's due to the output filter which has to be steep enough to get rid of the carrier frequency. Well one way to get around the frequency flatness issue is to pile on negative feedback. Then you can get a good flat frequency response that is fairly immune to load impedance. But now you have another problem. Because of the nyquist law on the sampling frequency you have a dominate pole dangerously close to the audio passband. So that greatly limits the level of negative feedback you can apply. So my educated guess is that they struggled with this issue as most intended auidophile class D amplifiers do. They seemed to reached a good compromise with their design as evidenced by your listening reports. But you and I will most likely never know because this is probably the most guarded design secret they have on this product. They do tout low feedback which leads me to believe this was their area of difficulty in the design. Again here technology and marketing have a favorable relationship. You can't have high feedback in a class D in the first place. It won't work. So we can take that and market the fact that this is a low feedback amp.

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post #570 of 805 Old 03-23-2014, 06:32 PM
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Steve fair enough.


Edorr what about the Lynx Aurora over thunderbolt ? Let Jriver do the volume control.

I'm setting the DACs to coarse volume control (0dB, -20dB or 40dB depending on desired volume of listening session), and use JRiver for +/- 10dB during listening.
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