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Ayre DX-5 bluray player - Page 41

post #1201 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by wernerleitmann View Post

I just want to limit the investigations here, just to ask if a future software update may allow gapless play in ALL discs?

Dear Werner,

I will check with Oppo to see if they are aware of this problem.
EDIT: Do you have any more examples besides this one disc?

Thanks,
Charles Hansen
Ayre Acoustics, Inc.
Edited by Charles Hansen - 7/14/13 at 1:08pm
post #1202 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by wernerleitmann View Post

regarding gapless playback, I did some further checks: Gaps between tracks do not occur in all CDs or DVD-As (on discs that contain tracks where gapless playback would be desired), only some are affected.
Most often, DVD-As are affected (an example: Nightwish - dark passion play, but also in some others). So I really don't know if the player is to blame, or the mastering of the disc.
But I could try the Nightwish disc, in MCh DVD-A mode, on a Pioneer DVD-989, here it played gapless.

I just want to limit the investigations here, just to ask if a future software update may allow gapless play in ALL discs?

Dear Werner,

I queried Oppo on this subject, and this was their reply

"We have resolved the DVD-Audio gapless playback issue with the firmware 21-0425.  Well known titles such as “Dark Side of the Moon” play well without audible gap.  Due to the variation in disc authoring techniques, there may still be some discs that still exhibit a gap.  Normally to fix the problem we send the disc to MediaTek and they provide us with a firmware update.  However since MediaTek has stopped providing firmware update to the MT8520 chipset, it is unlikely that anything can be done at this point."

So unfortunately the answer seems to be that there will be no further development on the firmware to address these issues.It appears as though there is a combination of issues. On the one hand DVD-Audio is pretty much a dead format. Any new releases are being performed by very small labels that have limited experience with the correct authoring standards. They do so little work with this format that they are unaware of the correct procedures to use. When this is combined with the fact that so few users purchase DVD-Audio discs, there simply isn't enough demand for the chip manufacturers to develop fixes for a tiny handful of discs used by a tiny handful of users.

If there were millions of people buying these discs and complaining about it, then the chip manufacturers would probably find a way to fix the problem. But it doesn't make sense for them to spend tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars to fix problems with discs that only affect a few hundred of their customers. Ayre does not have the resources to address the issues. Even Oppo doesn't have the resources. Only MediaTek, the Taiwanese chip make can fix these sorts of problems with improperly authored discs. At one point they made over half of their revenue on chips for video disc players. Now that is down to less than 10% and their biggest market today is selling "smart phone" chips to Chinese mobile phone manufacturers.

I'm sorry that we cannot help you. I would imagine that these problems only affect a small number of discs in your collection. If you only listen to the two-channel version, you can rip the disc to your computer and use J.River to play it back through the USB Audio Input and I'm sure it will be gapless. That is the best suggestion I can offer.

Best regards,
Charles Hansen
Ayre Acoustics, inc.
post #1203 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Hansen View Post


There are four benefits to having a separate HDMI output:


a) Lower jitter for the audio signal. Remember that with HDMI, the audio master clock is created with a PLL from the video pixel clock (Transition-Minimized Differential Signalling, or TMDS clock) in the HDMI signal. A PLL can never eliminate jitter, it can only reduce it. So the lower the jitter in the source, the lower the jitter in the receiver.


Our HDMI audio board is specifically designed to have as low of jitter levels as possible. We use an ultra low jitter crystal oscillator to generate the TMDS (pixel) clock. This is fed with a low-noise dedicated power supply regulator to ensure that it won't have jitter induced from noisy supplies. This feeds a brand new Analog Devices ADV7510 HDMI transmitter, with extremely short impedance-matched traces going to the HDMI connector to ensure the best possible signal.


b) The video clock used for the audio output is a constant 720p signal. This was chosen for two reasons -- it is the lowest rate that will support all audio formats (up to eight channels of 192/24) and it also has the lowest "N" and "CTS" ratios of any full-bandwidth video clock.


The N and CTS (Cycle Time Stamp) are the numbers used by the sink (receiver) to recreate the audio clock from the TMDS clock. These numbers set the ratio of the two clocks, and the lower these numbers, the lower the jitter in the reconstructed audio clock.


c) The above two advantages apply to "normal" audio connections, that it is to say HDMI connections that do not use Audio Rate Control (or one of its proprietary derivatives like Pioneer's PQLS or Sony's HATS). Audio Rate Control completely bypasses the audio jitter problem by putting the master audio clock of the SSP in charge and slaving the transport's speed to that clock.


Our HDMI Audio board supports Audio Rate Control. No current SSP's do so yet, but it is inevitable. We may even try to reverse engineer the Pioneer (and possibly Sony) formats -- they haven't been too forthcoming about the details. But I'm not sure if its worth the trouble or not. We'll see how much demand we get. Adding these features is easily done via a firmware update.


d) The entire analog section of the Ayre DX-5 is galvanically isolated from the video section with high-speed opto-isolators. This means that they don't even share the same ground. This is a requirement if you want both the best picture quality and best sound quality.


So if you send the main HDMI cable to your display and the audio HDMI cable to your SSP, these will be totally isolated. At least until you connect another piece of equipment to both sinks (receivers) with the same source, or try to use your SSP as a video switcher.


When you put all of these things together, the audio (and picture!) quality of your system will be significantly improved by running a the separate HDMI audio only output to your audio system.


Hi Charles,

I love your posts/threads! I learn so much from them and I really like your style. Just the facts, no BS out or tolerated. And I can tell you are very wise (can always see the big picture, or said another way: an excellent understanding of cause and effect globally).

What is the best resolution for CD audio?

My understanding is that 720p is the best compromise for all audio formats if you have to have one resolution for all, and in your player, you then optimize for this one rate which while still a compromise, is the best one.

I have an Oppo BDP-103 on the way. If you could change the resolution for the three formats (CD, DVD-A, SACD) separately, which I beliieve is something possible for the BDP-103, what rates would you use for each format? I plan to relay this information to Oppo in hopes they can and will implement it.

Would you switch resolutions say to match the sample rate, bit depth, # of channels on DVD-A? Example - one resoltuion for 2 channel 24/192 vs 5.1 channel 24/96? In short, what would be the best resolutions for each possibility? I would think there would be one for CD as it is fixed at 16/44.1 and also one for SACD as it is fixed (88.2/24 when converted), but I could see that you might have different optimum resolutions for DVD-A depending on the channels, bit depth, and sample rate.

Perhaps one day I will be able to afford your stuff. Like the whole way you run things. Only thing I would like to see is polarity inversion. I find it hard to live wtihout this. It takes a while to hear the difference (actually it is more felt, it is harder to tell the difference sometimes when I listen intellectually, usually easier to hear emotionally), but once I figured it out I can now pretty much tell when something is out without any comparison.

Anyway, I think everything should have polarity inversion capabilities. I would think it would start appearing on more things, certainly DAC's as most have this capability built in to the DAC chip. Usually it does require software control, but I rarely see it even when the DAC chip is operating in software mode.

My Channel Island Audio VDA-2 does this using a flip-flop if I remember Dusty's words correctly.

I do not use HDMI for audio if I can avoid it. I will not be using it with the 103 either, I plan to use coax to the VDA-2/VAC-1 (polarity inversion with a toggle switch right on the front and this is a nice DAC as far as I am concerned), but I might in the future and if implemented, this will be beneficial to those that do.

Nam Myoho Renge Kyo,
Kelly
Edited by kellybob - 7/20/13 at 11:29pm
post #1204 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by kellybob View Post

What is the best resolution for CD audio?

My understanding is that 720p is the best compromise for all audio formats if you have to have one resolution for all, and in your player, you then optimize for this one rate which while still a compromise, is the best one.

I have an Oppo BDP-103 on the way. If you could change the resolution for the three formats (CD, DVD-A, SACD) separately, which I beliieve is something possible for the BDP-103, what rates would you use for each format? I plan to relay this information to Oppo in hopes they can and will implement it.

Would you switch resolutions say to match the sample rate, bit depth, # of channels on DVD-A? Example - one resoltuion for 2 channel 24/192 vs 5.1 channel 24/96? In short, what would be the best resolutions for each possibility? I would think there would be one for CD as it is fixed at 16/44.1 and also one for SACD as it is fixed (88.2/24 when converted), but I could see that you might have different optimum resolutions for DVD-A depending on the channels, bit depth, and sample rate.

Perhaps one day I will be able to afford your stuff. Like the whole way you run things. Only thing I would like to see is polarity inversion. I find it hard to live wtihout this. It takes a while to hear the difference (actually it is more felt, it is harder to tell the difference sometimes when I listen intellectually, usually easier to hear emotionally), but once I figured it out I can now pretty much tell when something is out without any comparison.

Anyway, I think everything should have polarity inversion capabilities. I would think it would start appearing on more things, certainly DAC's as most have this capability built in to the DAC chip. Usually it does require software control, but I rarely see it even when the DAC chip is operating in software mode.

My Channel Island Audio VDA-2 does this using a flip-flop if I remember Dusty's words correctly.

I do not use HDMI for audio if I can avoid it. I will not be using it with the 103 either, I plan to use coax to the VDA-2/VAC-1 (polarity inversion with a toggle switch right on the front and this is a nice DAC as far as I am concerned), but I might in the future and if implemented, this will be beneficial to those that doy

Hello Kelly,

As far as HMDI goes, there is no optimal video pixel rate for any given format. The audio data is stuffed into the blanking intervals (both horizontal and vertical) of the video signal. 720p is the lowest resolution of video rate that will still allow transmitting 7.1 channels of 192/24 in the blanking intervals, so that is what we use. I don't think there would be any advantage to using a lower video rate with something like CD, which only requires VGA resolution (640 x 480.) We use a pixel clock that is 720p as most modern sets can handle this, yet it provides enough "room" for the maximum audio data rate of Blu-ray. I suppose that in specific implementations that there may be some other factor that would affect the sound quality in some via some 3rd order effect, but certainly nothing that I am aware of that would apply to all receivers.

As far as polarity inversion goes, I wouldn't touch it with a ten-foot pole. I listened for it many, many times after it was first reported but could never hear it myself. Then just by accident I heard it one time while listening on a friend's system. We both got kind of excited about it because it was the first time that either of us had heard it. So we started pulling out discs at random to compare. In each case we could hear a small, yet noticeable difference between the two polarities. I don't know if this was because our system resolution had improved or because our years of listening had made us more sensitive to small effects. But the funny thing was that in every single case the songs always sounded better with the correct polarity. After about twenty discs, this game became very boring.

So from my personal experience, very few recordings (if any) are made with the incorrect polarity. So there is no good reason to include a polarity switch and at least two extremely important reasons to leave it off:

1) Adding a polarity switch to a digital component is rather trivial. Most people don't do it correctly, and changing the polarity switches the DC offset by one LSB. But doing it properly is still not that big of a deal. But changing the polarity of an analog source is a major pain in the ass. To do it properly would require a Shallco switch with solid-silver contacts and solid-silver wipers. The whole thing would need to be controlled by a stepping motor, increasing the retail price of the product by several thousand dollars. People who do it with relays are causing serious degradation to the sound in either position. I have never heard a relay of any type hat did not mangle the sound quite badly.

2) Adding a polarity switch transforms what should be a relaxing way to spend an evening into an obsessive-compulsive game with no correct answer. Instead of enjoying the music. the listener must sit there and go through each album, track-by-track, trying to decide which way sounds better, and the making notes on the liner notes so that the next time they play it they won't have to suffer the brain damage all over again.

The only advice I can give is that if polarity inversion is an important feature for you, that you won't be happy with an Ayre system and should probably purchase a different brand of equipment. No company can be all things to all people, and Are equipment has never included polarity switches and likely never will. Luckily for you, there are plenty of brands of digital and analog products that do include polarity switches. Or you can purchase the Cardas speaker connectors pre-drilled for banana plugs and switch the polarity in a matter of seconds, although certainly not with the convenience of remote-control.

Sorry,
Charles Hansen
Ayre Acoustics, Inc.
post #1205 of 1423
Dear Charles,

indeed there are some more titles that are affected by gaps between tracks, like Steve Wilson's "Insurgentes", Porcupine Tree's DVD-A titles and a few more. Pink Floyds' DSOTM is not affected, but btw, this is a SACD disc, not DVD-A. Other minor playback issues include, for example, the Blu-Ray disc of Steven Wilson "The raven that refused to sing", here the dts-HD layer is affected by audible clicks throughout playback, but not the dts 96/24 layer.
But again, no big issue here, I guess some minor problems with discs that do not fulfill all mastering standards can be found with several BD or DVD-players. And the Oppo answer was comprehensive also. I thought I experienced a gapless problem with a regular CD also, but I cannot remember the exact disc right now.
The only reason I asked was that usually, firmware updates in BD-players are offered (or required) more frequently as with the DX-5 - the last firmware update, to my knowledge, was released more than a year ago.

Very best regards

Werner
post #1206 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by wernerleitmann View Post

The only reason I asked was that usually, firmware updates in BD-players are offered (or required) more frequently as with the DX-5 - the last firmware update, to my knowledge, was released more than a year ago.

Dear Werner,

During the life of the Oppo BDP-83 which was the basis for the DX-5, they released over a dozen firmware updates. Most of these were "beta" releases, as even a large company cannot test all possible combinations of players with all possible combinations of discs and all possible combinations of processors. Therefore Oppo would release beta versions and ask the customers to test them. These resulted in three official versions of firmware releases as detailed at:

http://www.ayre.com/dx5_firmware_history.htm

Since the BDP-83 was released Oppo has released two more generations of players, both with different chipsets (BDP-93/95 with 3D and BDP-103/105 with 4K and additional streaming features). The only way that these companies can stay in business is through planned obsolescence. Whenever sales slow down they can't think of any way to actually improve the performance of the player, so instead they add new features of questionable value. Almost everything in the world today is sold by one of two methods:

1) Fear - "If you don't buy this new gadget, you won't be cool, your friends won't like you, you won't be able to find a girlfriend, you will be living in the stone age, you will be missing out on the good things in life, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.
2) Sex - "If you buy this new gadget, you will be more attractive to the opposite sex, women will like you, you can impress them with your splendiforous home theater, and you will have better sex, more often.

Ayre's philosophy is the exact opposite of this. We want to design products that are far, FAR beyond what any other company offers from a performance perspective. This is not that hard to do as most companies just make the same old stuff year after year but put it in a new package and claim that it is "new and improved!" We feel that our products should have a lifetime of ten or twenty years. As we develop ways to improve the performance of our products, we offer upgrades to our existing customers.

The audio industry is relatively mature and there isn't much innovation happening now except in the way of interfacing computers with your A/V system. But the video industry is still changing rapidly. When Ayre was founded in 1993, we didn't release a digital player because we knew that a new format (DVD) was coming. When it was released in 1997 we didn't immediately release a player. Instead we waited for the second generation of players that had significantly improved performance and also would decode DTS discs (after that was added to the list of approved audio formats). We still had to offer upgrades to keep up -- first for progressive scan and then for DVI (as digital displays became more popular). But when Blu-ray and HD-DVD were announced, sales of expensive DVD players dropped to a trickle. We have no control over these things.

When Blu-ray and HD-DVD came out, there was a format war that lasted about a year and a half. Unfortunately Sony won this war, not for any reason other than the fact that they owned a movie studio which gave them the inside knowledge of who to bribe and how much money was required. Oh, and it also had a "cooler" name than "HD-DVD".

Ayre publicly announced that we would not release a player until one of two things happened:

a) A top quality player capable of decoding both formats became available.
b) There was a clear winner in the format war.

As it turned out, Blu-ray was the winner, but as we are also an audio-oriented company, we waited until there was a player that could also handle all of the audio formats -- CD, SACD, DVD-Audio as well as the video formats. You have to remember that the first Blu-ray player wouldn't even play CD's!!!

Unfortunately HDMI has totally dominated the market for the connectivity option. The reason it is unfortunate is two-fold -- it is by far the worst performing digital audio format ever invented, and the licensing fees are outrageously prohibitive for small companies. The ONLY way that any mid- to small-sized manufacturer can use HDMI is to purchase a pre-licensed unit from a large company. The advantage of this is that since we are not licensed, we don't have to follow their rules. I am sure that you can appreciate some of the advantages that give us.

But we never want to build a product that has a lifetime of less than three to five years. And while it is true that our player does not offer 3D, we don't really care about that as that format flopped pretty badly (as we predicted that it would). The 4K thing seems to be a much more important feature that is likely to succeed, but since there is no native source material at this point, there is no disadvantage to using a scaler external to the player -- either a separate box or one that is built into the display.

All of the streaming services use MUCH higher compression ratios than do physical discs, and the picture quality simply isn't as good. There is an excellent article on this here on the AVS Forum: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1459687/argo-itunes-vs-vudu-vs-blu-ray

If one is happy to watch low picture quality, there isn't much point to purchase a very expensive Blu-ray player. So the lack of streaming features is not such a disadvantage.

All that leaves is the lack of firmware updates for what is now considered to be an "old" chipset. The chief problem you seem to be experiencing is with audio-only discs. As I suggested in a previous post a good solution for this with two-channel discs is to rip the disc to your computer, play it back via J.River Media Center, and play the music through the USB Audio Input on the DX-5. This won't address the issue for multi-channel discs. as you would be forced to use the HDMI output of your computer to play to an SSP and the sound quality advantage of the DX-5 won't be used. But I am afraid that there is only so much we can do. As the "giants" of the industry keep changing the standards in an attempt to keep selling you the same gadget over and over and over and over again, there is only so much that we can do. I don't ever want to be a company that comes out with a new product every one or two (or even three) years. If you look at things like our AX-7 integrated amplifier, it remains in Stereophile's Class A Recommended products after only one update in a dozen years. That is the kind of equipment that we like to build, but sometimes external forces conspire against achieving those goals, especially in the realm of video. I wish this were not the case, but there is very little that we can do about it.

Best regards,
Charles Hansen
Ayre Acoustics, Inc.
www.ayre.com

PS -- DSOTM was released on both SACD and DVD-A -- http://www.head-fi.org/t/447246/the-dark-side-of-the-moon-dvd-audio-vs-sacd
post #1207 of 1423
Hello All,

I received a private message but am posting the question and answer here as I'm sure that this will be of interest to many people:
Quote:
Hello, I finally got one Friday, what an audio engine! Got on the list for the upgrade. Was wondering if you had any suggestions for a USB OR HDMI cables. Thanking you in advance. PS, Have you ever thought of trying Ohno copper wire in Ayre products?

For my money the two best cable companies around are Cardas and AudioQuest. There are obviously lots and lots of cable companies out there, but many of them don't have the capability of building the newer cables that have to really be very precisely made to even just function at the speeds in this new world of ultra-high-speed digital signals. I think that AudioQuest probably has the broadest line around with more unusual things like FireWire, and they were (to my knowledge) the first high-end cable company to make things like Cat. 7 wire and HDMI cables. They both make excellent products and generally have a fairly noticeable "house sound" such that you will prefer one over the other. Cardas just recently introduced an HDMI cable, and I haven't had a chance to play with that but expect it to perform at a very high level like the rest of their products.

In general I would say that in my experience the AudioQuest cables are very open, detailed, and transparent. The Cardas cables tend toward the full, rich, and musical end of the spectrum. It's going to depend on your taste and your system, but those are the two brands that I would recommend auditioning. Both are very high quality and use top-grade materials.

As far as wire in the Ayre products, we use VERY little of it. Most of the connectors attach directly to the PCB. About the only exception is the wire that carries the output signal from the amplifier PCB's to the speaker terminals. There we use very heavy runs of Cardas, which is made from far purer copper than Ohno. (The same is true of AudioQuest.)

Best regards,
Charles Hansen
post #1208 of 1423
Dear Charles,

I can follow your thoughts to almost 100% (your marketing explanations in the first part of your answer even better after some glasses of wine), with only a few specific comments:

1) Indeed no problem with 3D. To be honest, I very occassionally watch a 3D title, using a 100 $ 3D-BD-player.

2) Although I agree that most of newly announced features of many home entertainment products do not offer much real value, I recognized firmware updates as to ensure that any (if there are any) bugs are resolved to ensure best compatibility to media. The dts-HD bug with the Steven Wilson disc may be an example. A few months ago, I realized that EVERY dts24/96 disc layer in music-only DVDs was played incorrectly, with very strange playback interruptions of some milliseconds, occuring every few seconds, that was before I bought the DX-5. I got crazy on that, because it was obvious for me to blame the player for that issue. The unit was sent to the service for repair, it came back in the same condition, the service staff could not reproduce the issue. And they were right - there was a firmware bug in the processor! After several emails, the Bryston staff confirmed this issue (it seemed I'm the only one on the planet having dts 24/96 music-only discs, as with the dts 5.1 I mentioned earlier). What happened? I really got a new firmware sent by Bryston (that was not officially announced up to now, as far as I know), that indeed resolved the issue! So that's an example that FW updates MAY make sense in terms of general usability of the unit.

3) The intention to spend much more money for a player as for another (having many more features) is indeed as you described, getting a unit with long-lasting quality and the highest performance in the most relevant audio and video quality terms, no doubt about that. Your offer of updates like the analog audio upgrade (that may be available soon, hopefully) is an excellent example of your company sharing the same interest in quality as your customers do.
BUT there are also some "upgrades", or, to be correct, updated new versions of other players, especially based on Oppo-derived units, that can be regarded as meaningful: Consider the new version of Electrocompaniet EMP-3 vs. EMP-2. I do not talk about any new streaming features, but there are indeed TWO "features" that may be desirable for the DX-5 also: The new disc transport mechanism, which seems to be more silent (yes, the DX-5 mechanism is audible under quiet conditions and in music pauses), and even faster than the former one (but reaction times are surely not a problem in the DX-5). The other feature that may be of interest is the HDMI INPUT to make further use of the excellent D/A converters.

In summary, I can thoroughly share your philosophy, but in certain circumstances, new models may also be relevant for some people. I think it's generally a hard effort to create a player that will be regarded as "best in class" for 10-20 years. Considering the price, Marantz' UD9004 could have been such a machine for many (esp. for its very good stereo AND multichannel analog outputs), but the boring slow disc mechanism, which has never been updated, marked this unit as clearly out-of-date.

Kind regards

Werner
Edited by wernerleitmann - 7/22/13 at 12:31am
post #1209 of 1423
Hello Charles,

while I am patiently waiting for the DX-5 DSD upgrade, I made my own "upgrade" a few weeks ago by replacing my 1.5m Audioquest USB Carbon by an Audioquest Diamond 0,75m USB cable. I was shocked about the sonic improvement that I heard from my MacBook/iTunes/Pure Music playback! Obviously, even in the asynchronous mode, lots of things are happening in a USB connection and a very good cable here is absolutely worth the investment. I hear a better defined, deeper soundstage, more transparency, more air around instruments and a much more coherent, three-dimensional structure of instruments and voices. In one word: much more life-like, and I agree to your Audioquest recommendation. The question arises: I use a 3TB firewire HDD to store the music, it is loaded into the RAM of the MacBook by Pure Music and sent to the DX-5 by USB. With this set-up, would a very good Firewire-Cable (e.g. from Audioquest) also lead to further improvements, although the music is played back from the MacBooks RAM?

Best regards from Cologne

Ingo
Edited by IngoT - 7/22/13 at 3:34am
post #1210 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Hansen View Post

Hello Kelly,

As far as HMDI goes, there is no optimal video pixel rate for any given format. The audio data is stuffed into the blanking intervals (both horizontal and vertical) of the video signal. 720p is the lowest resolution of video rate that will still allow transmitting 7.1 channels of 192/24 in the blanking intervals, so that is what we use. I don't think there would be any advantage to using a lower video rate with something like CD, which only requires VGA resolution (640 x 480.) We use a pixel clock that is 720p as most modern sets can handle this, yet it provides enough "room" for the maximum audio data rate of Blu-ray. I suppose that in specific implementations that there may be some other factor that would affect the sound quality in some via some 3rd order effect, but certainly nothing that I am aware of that would apply to all receivers.

As far as polarity inversion goes, I wouldn't touch it with a ten-foot pole. I listened for it many, many times after it was first reported but could never hear it myself. Then just by accident I heard it one time while listening on a friend's system. We both got kind of excited about it because it was the first time that either of us had heard it. So we started pulling out discs at random to compare. In each case we could hear a small, yet noticeable difference between the two polarities. I don't know if this was because our system resolution had improved or because our years of listening had made us more sensitive to small effects. But the funny thing was that in every single case the songs always sounded better with the correct polarity. After about twenty discs, this game became very boring.

So from my personal experience, very few recordings (if any) are made with the incorrect polarity. So there is no good reason to include a polarity switch and at least two extremely important reasons to leave it off:

1) Adding a polarity switch to a digital component is rather trivial. Most people don't do it correctly, and changing the polarity switches the DC offset by one LSB. But doing it properly is still not that big of a deal. But changing the polarity of an analog source is a major pain in the ass. To do it properly would require a Shallco switch with solid-silver contacts and solid-silver wipers. The whole thing would need to be controlled by a stepping motor, increasing the retail price of the product by several thousand dollars. People who do it with relays are causing serious degradation to the sound in either position. I have never heard a relay of any type hat did not mangle the sound quite badly.

2) Adding a polarity switch transforms what should be a relaxing way to spend an evening into an obsessive-compulsive game with no correct answer. Instead of enjoying the music. the listener must sit there and go through each album, track-by-track, trying to decide which way sounds better, and the making notes on the liner notes so that the next time they play it they won't have to suffer the brain damage all over again.

The only advice I can give is that if polarity inversion is an important feature for you, that you won't be happy with an Ayre system and should probably purchase a different brand of equipment. No company can be all things to all people, and Are equipment has never included polarity switches and likely never will. Luckily for you, there are plenty of brands of digital and analog products that do include polarity switches. Or you can purchase the Cardas speaker connectors pre-drilled for banana plugs and switch the polarity in a matter of seconds, although certainly not with the convenience of remote-control.

Sorry,
Charles Hansen
Ayre Acoustics, Inc.

Thanks for the reply Charles.

I went over to Decware in East Peoria for an audition. While there, I asked Steve about absolute polarity. He informed me that amp/speaker combinations will sound better one way vs the other (swapping the leads to the speaker). Before that, I had also experimented with simply turning an interconnect around and seeing if I could hear a difference which I could. So at that time, I knew that swapping leads at the speaker was changing more than one variable and had read that absolute polarity issues would be 50/50, meaning even if it did make a difference, then even if you swapped speaker leads, you would not be accomplishing much.

I like to make compilatiion CD's. At some time, I became aware that I could invert songs in software. So I made a CD with a song, followed by the same song inverted. I did also have to establish absolute polarity. I used a test file dwonloaded from the internet and used this as the basis to first establish absolutely correct polarity. Not that it matters in the end, as in the end one way almost always sounds better than the other, but I wanted to establish an absolute reference.

So I first used this CD to see if I could indeed hear a difference in the amp/speaker combo, which I could. I would swap speaker wires and then swap polarity using the songs on the disc. This way I was not swapping acoustic polarity and electrical polarity. Then I used this disc to test all kinds of systems to see if they were all in the same polarity.

Anyway, I have tested many CD's and DVD's. Certainly around a hundred at this point. Almost all discs maintain the same polarity for the entire disc. I think I found only a couple of discs that did not and they were compilation discs (best of). Almost all discs sound better one way versus the other. Only with a few a few did I have to make a decision as it was obvious that some things were recorded in and some out on that song. Fleetwood Mac: Dreams is an example. Not sure about the absoluteness, but the bass is out on this song compared to everything else, so I had to choose which way I liked better. Usually everything sounds better one way or the other. America: America I think has all songs with the guitars out compared to the vocals. Horse With No Name I went with lead vocal in absolute polarity, guitarts out as I think the vocal on this one is the foundation. Most of the others I went with guitars in absolute.

I found that with CD's around 90 percent of them are recorded out of absolute polarity. If I cannot swap on the fly, I wil run the system out of absolute polarity as this gets most things sounding right. Now perhaps I did not get my absolute polarity right in the first place and my numbers are the other way, that is 90 percent are correct. I am pretty sure I got it right. I played with this for a year and tested all kinds of systems. But it is possible I got it wrong. However the numbers are not 50/50, so it certainly pays to pay attention, as if you get it right you will have most CD's playing correctly. I now have interconnects that invert as when I got my CD player correct, the tuner was out as the CD player inverts and the tuner didn't.

I have found that the numbers are closer to 50/50 with DVD's. I have not paid enough attention to know for sure, although I can go and check at some time, as I do mark everything. I found that it tends to be easier to hear the difference on movie soundtracks particularly with ambient natural sounds - cars in the distance, rain, wind, general background stuff. The difference hear and on some of the dubstep stuff I listen to. Some sound on a movie soundtrack will actually pretty much diappear when out of absolute polarity. With DVD's the 2 channel mix (which almost always sounds better than the 5.1 downmixed into stereo which is how I listen) is often not the same polarity as the 5.1. Yes, I also compare when there are 2 soundtracks which means I have to first establish correct polarity for each soundtrack and then compare the soundtracks to each other.

I do agree that it can make things annoying. Having to figure out all this on every thing which I do not always do. I am getting better and can tend to tell when something is out, but it still many times takes much back and forth. It tends to be much easier when cannabis is involved. But I do like having the option to be obsessive/compulsive (high standards?) if I want. People do not have to use the switch if it is there. And the other use is simpky to get all the components in the same polarity. CD player inverts, tuner doesn't. You can use inverted interconnects to do this, but this limits your choices as you either have to make them or but from a smaller company that will build them this way for you.

During all of this, I also found out that Audacity applies dither unless you rip CD in 16 bit as my HDCD encoding was getting destryed even though I was only inverting. Took me a while to figure this out. And realized the compilation discs I had went back and remade (which is quite hard as I edit a lot and had to re-rip all the songs and then use the original CD to figure out and match all the fades and edits. And then had to go back again and re-do as I could hear that the dither made things worse and so was sometimes comparing an undithered out of polarity with a dithered in polarity.

My numbers do match this persons. This was also my reference that I did get absolute polarity correct using the test file. My numbers match his, that is more like 90 percent are recorded out.

http://audiogeorge.com/30-years-of-digital-and-the-92-solution/

I know Jim Smith is also big on absolute polarity. I personally think it makes more difference than a lot of tweaks. It is more audible for example than geting the A/C polarity right. More audible than eliminating muting transistors. About the same as sanding and blacking the edges of the CD's or removing the steel plate and bolt on a toroid, or swapping drivers on a 12 db crossover so that the drivers are in the same polarty (well, actually on the one set I did this with, this driver swap made mor difference).

I am sure lots of typos, but I am tired.

Looking forward to playing with resoltuions on the Oppo to see what I hear! I only have the TV speakers to do this with, but I seem to be able to hear the differences no matter the quality fo the system. The better the system, the more obvious the differences, however.

Really liked the There's No Such Thing As Digital interview. Gets spiritual doesn't it? All things do, as they originate in spirtual and manifest in the physical (cause and effect or myoho).


The AudioQuest Forest Firewire that I use between my DVD burner and Mac made quite a difference in the picture mainly. This really stood out. Did not bother to quantify this. It sounded better and looked much better. I usually do rigorous testing.

Thanks again,
Kelly
post #1211 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Hansen View Post


Almost everything in the world today is sold by one of two methods:

1....................
2) Sex - "If you buy this new gadget, you will be more attractive to the opposite sex, women will like you, you can impress them with your splendiforous home theater, and you will have better sex, more often.

Ayre's philosophy is the exact opposite of this.


So with Ayre products I will be getting less sex???
post #1212 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by scottsol View Post

So with Ayre products I will be getting less sex???

Hi Scott,

I think I painted myself into a corner with this one, so I will just leave it alone... smile.gif

Thanks,
Charlie
Ayre
post #1213 of 1423

Ayre DX-5 can you use a flashdrive for music?

Can you use a flashdrive for music, & if so, can you walk me threw it to get it to play back using the DX-5, Thank you
post #1214 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by kellybob View Post

Thanks for the reply Charles.

I went over to Decware in East Peoria for an audition. While there, I asked Steve about absolute polarity. He informed me that amp/speaker combinations will sound better one way vs the other (swapping the leads to the speaker).....

Hello Kelly,

There's is a lot of stuff going on that we don't understand. And I certainly won't argue with someone that wants to have an absolute polarity switch on their system. But I still don't ever plan on adding that Here are a couple of semi random factoids

1) Swapping the orientation of interconnect cables almost always changes the way the grounds are connected also. So you can't be sure what is causing the change in sound. I know that AudioQuest is really big on this and they listen to every spool of wire that is manufactured to determine the "correct" polarity and then build the cables up to account for that. It's impossible to swap ends of a balanced cable as the connectors are different at each end. And with RCA connectors, normally there are TWO inner conductors plus the shield and the shield is only connected to one connector (ie, one end). So when you flip it end-for-end you are changing the orientation of the wire and how the grounding is implemented.

2) I would guess that 99% of the digital equipment that includes a polarity switch just inverts the data stream. This is not the same as inverting the polarity because there is no such thing as "+0" and "-0". So to properly invert it you have to invert the data stream and the add (or subtract -- I forget which) 1 LSB. But now you are starting to raise additional variables. Just as many people hear differences between FLAC and WAV (or even AIFF and WAV), which is presumably due to the extra processing done by the data converter, it is easily conceivable that the extra computation required to get a true inversion changes the sound. And it is almost certainly true that just inverting the data stream (which does more than invert the polarity of the audio signal) is going to cause audible differences beyond what truly inverting the data stream would do.

3) Many people think that directionality in speaker wire is due to the wire being "burned in" in one polarity and that if you reverse the polarity it will sound different at first, but after a month or two of play that the new polarity will now sound "correct".

4) There still remains the huge problem that changing the polarity in the analog domain PROPERLY will still result in a very small degradation in the sound due to the extra contacts involved. The most transparent switch I have ever heard is a Shallco rotary switch. In this case I would say that the only thing you lose is perhaps 1% of the resolution, which is certainly tolerable. But to add remote control requires stepper motors and now you are talking about raising the retail price by around $1500 to $2000 To me this is crazy. Everybody has to pay a ridiculous amount of money for something that only a few people would ever use.

This is what I would recommend:

1) Purchase a preamp (like our new KX-5 which is stupidly good) with two sets of balanced outputs.

2) Purchase a power amp with balanced inputs.

3) Purchase two sets of interconnects, one with reversed polarity. Leave them both connected to the preamp.

4) Change the polarity by change which pair of interconnects is plugged into the power amp.

That would give you the least degradation of the signal (ie, essentially none), while still being reasonably easy to change absolute polarity

It would be far easier than swapping speaker connections (unless you have banana connectors, which I am not too fond of), plus it removes the variable of swapping the directionality of the speaker wires.

It's not 100% fool-proof as connectors are usually only rated for a few thousand matings cycles. So every five years or so you would probably want to send the amp back to us and replace the input connectors. But that is the best solution I can think of. Any other thoughts from anyone reading this thread are welcomed.

Best regards,
Charlie Hansen
Ayre Acoustics,, Inc
post #1215 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by upforsomething View Post

Can you use a flashdrive for music, & if so, can you walk me threw it to get it to play back using the DX-5, Thank you

Hello Up,

The information you need is on page 30 of the owner's manual. You just need a FAT32 formatted thumb drive and the files have to be either WAV or MP3. I think they have to be in the root directory, but I am not 100% sure about that.

More information is available at:

http://www.ayre.com/dx5_faq.htm

and also:

http://wiki.oppodigital.com/index.php?title=BDP-83_FAQ


Across the top of this page are many topics. The most helpful for your questions are "Media Files" and "UPnP/DLNA".

Thanks,
Charles Hansen
post #1216 of 1423
Hello Charles, this computer audio is really new for me. I do have the JR media player. Liked what it could do with you tube downloads, on the desk top. W7 crashed & Google eliminated the downloads, so that put an end to that. Thanks for the info, only had the DX-5 since Friday, it exceeded my expectations! Got on the update list. Will have to spend some time & read more on the computer audio. Thank you very much, Don
post #1217 of 1423
Hello Don,

Computer audio is a whole new world. Our website has a lot of info, including links to other helpful websites:

http://www.ayre.com/usb-links.htm

One of my favorites is "The Well Tempered Computer". Vincent Kars of the Netherlands writes that one and it has a TON of helpful information on it. He is also very helpful on the "PC Audio" forum of the "Audio Asylum".

The best way I've found to download YouTube videos (sound and picture) is with a FireFox plug-in called "Download YouTube Videos as MP4". Super easy to use, it just adds a "Download" button to every YouTube page and allows you to select from the available resolutions. It is great. Sound quality is only fair as even the best YouTube is only 128 kbs MP3. But at least it is stereo!

Have fun!
post #1218 of 1423
Charles,

Thanks for the further information!

I got the Oppo BDP-103 last night and was watching some Blu-rays. This is my first Blu-ray player. Anyway, I haven't listened or watched much for a few weeks.

I was watching Body Heat listening through the VDA-2, so I could easily swap polarity. Anyway, I had forgotten how much difference this makes. I would probably recommend watching (listening) to a movie, as absolute polarity seems to be more obvious here. Anyway, I set the Oppo to A-B this certain scene where they are just talking and then a piano comes in and then strings kick in. Anyway, absolute polarity incorrect on this part, just totally killed the scene. The emotional impact just was not there. I did not get sucked into the dialog and then slowly get lifted up and then anxious as the strings kicked in. The emotional impact was totally destroyed. Yes, intellectually the sound didn't sound right either, but it is more the emotional connection that is lost.

Absolute polarity is easier to hear over a single driver or speakers that do not run drivers out of polarity. The one set of speakers (AudioEngine A5+) that I rewired the drivers to be in polarity despite a 2nd order crossover also sounded much better.

It was really easy to here over headphones listening to a recording I made of me talking. The mic was a single point omni stereo mike. I bet this might be the best way to hear this. That is, just a mono voice recording. Drums really lose impact inverted. My test CD had one track with the kick drum starting the song and then hard snare whacks with reverb. Really easy to hear the effect here.

Think about this:

There is no way to hear sounds in inverted acoustic polarity in nature. It is only possible to hear this on something recorded and played back. Having the polarity correct is what ties the sound to nature. Interestingly enough, synthesized sounds which have no parallel in nature (well, there is no actual sound outside of nature - I can "hear" myself think, but it does not sound the same as me speaking the same thought) really change for the worse when inverted. To me, getting the absolute polarity correct is a fundamental issue. This is the foundation for everything.

I understand the arguement that say a multitracked song could have half the sounds out and and half in, but even if this is so, one polarity always sounds much better than the other on everything I have tested, which is quite a bit now.

I go to great lengths to do all kinds of small tweaks. For example, analog out, the BDP-103 sounds better in Dual Display mode versus split with only one display hooked up. It sounds better with the digital output set to bitstream, it sounds better with the subwoofer set to on, better in source direct. I can go on and on. Crossover settings even when not using the crossover change the sound. I have been playing with the resolution settings which make a difference even when using analog out. I know you focus on all these little things when you design something. Absolute polarity can be as hard to hear as these things, but once you hear it, it is such a fundamental issue. Without it being correct, you are doing these intellectual tweaks that do make a difference, but they never fundamentally change the whole emotional connection to the music like absolute acoustic polarity does. My testing has been 2-channel, BTW.

The way I check for absolute polarity now is with a test disc I made. So that takes out most of the variables except perhaps the DC offset. Is the DC offset still changed if inverting in software? I would think so.

A long time ago, I did mess around with a wave editor getting rid of DC offset. I could hear this no problem. But in the end, I found that overall it sounded better not eliminating the DC offset because I am assuming the rounding errors when doing this took away resolution. Removing the DC offset always really solidified things, but I would lose fine detail, air. This took some extensive testing to hear. So I have played with DC offset also.

I imagine you could easliy make a test mule with remote polarity inversion in the digital domain for your personal system. I suggest you do this and just play around with it some more as you have the time. While I would love to see absolute polarity inversion on your stuff and all stuff, I am not suggestinng you do this for this reason. I personally want you to experience the difference, as it is a big one. And it does take some time to be able to hear. Once you do, it is hard to go back.

Now, I can listen and not worry about it. So it does not ruin things for me. I am saying this, because some things, once brought to your awareness, are hard to overlook. This does not work that way even though it is such a fundamental difference.

You mentioned that 720P is theorectically the best resolution out of the high bandwith ones. So 720p is better than 1080i and 1080p (not sure if I vs P at 1080 changes anything clock wise, but would change what a chip inside is doing and would affect the sound). You mentioned c and n or some ratio. Not going to go back and figure it out now. Using only these numbers, what resolution would have the least jitter out of all the possbile resolutions? I am going to play around with this listening to a CD as 480i will pass this to see what I hear. Just curious as to what the theoretical best resoltution is to see how my hearing coincides with theory.
Edited by kellybob - 7/24/13 at 10:52pm
post #1219 of 1423
Talking about absolute acoustic polarity one should keep in mind that there are many loudspeakers with one or more drivers connected in negative polarity. All the specs published are about frequency response, but rare manufacturer claims that signal in time domain kept intact (like Dunlavy did). Step response is the first thing I look at in Stereophile loudspeaker review. It tells so much...

So I absolutely agree with Kelly and Charles both. Acoustic polarity is very important as it makes music sound natural. And as Charles said from a technical standpoint it is better to have two XLR cable sets (one normal and another with swapped wires at one end) or a rotary switch to swap positive and negative wires. I would not make other manufacturers responsible for loudspeaker design flaws. smile.gif
Edited by neprince - 7/25/13 at 12:21am
post #1220 of 1423
Hello Kelly and Prince,

There is no doubt that "tweaking" has a profound impact on the sound of a system. In fact I am in the middle of writing a manufacturer's comment to Sterephile magazine where I claim that tweaking can represent roughly half of the performance of a system. But in my opinion you have to draw the line somewhere. Personally, I draw the line at:

1) Tubes. I don't care how good it sounds, if it has tubes in it, I don't want to own it. Every time you play it, the tube is wearing out. The suppliers of tubes come and go. Their QC is variable.I don't want to have to worry about when I should replace the tubes because a a new set would improve the sound enough. Or if they will improve it at all because the new tubes aren't as good as the old tubes were, et cetera, et cetera.

2) Green ink or truing the edges of a CD with a lathe. Sure it sounds better. But not enough better that I am going to spend ten minutes times 10,000 CD's to make them better. Even ripping them to a hard drive wouldn't be worth it if it weren't for FreeDB and/or MusicBrainz. Can you imagine all the typing to put in 10,000 CD's???

3) Absolute polarity. LIfe's too short. To me this would be like adjusting the tire pressure every single time before you drove your car. Yes, it would drive better. But at some point the brain damage isn't worth it.

There are more, but those are some of the obvious examples. I stick to tweaks that I only have to do once. So when I buy a new phono cartridge, it will take me a full month of fiddling until I get the most out of it. Then I don't touch it until I replace it. When I was in my twenties, with no career or family, it was a different story. But today at age 57, I literally don't have time for that any more. People always want more features and more convenience in their products. And when I can add a feature or a convenience to one of our product without degrading its performance, I will do it. The problem is that it almost always increases the price. Our parts cost on the volume control for our new integrated amplifier is around $500. That is literally 100x higher than 99.8% of all existing audio equipment. But not only does it give the convenience of remote control, it is also the best sounding, closest tracking volume control made.

Everyone will draw the line in a different place. Many manufacturers add polarity inversion to their preamps with relays. I have never heard a relay that doesn't mangle the music going through it. I would never send an audio signal through a relay. But some people would rather have the choice of polarity and pay the price of always having their music mangled. There's nothing wrong with that. We're not debating the future of mankind. We're just trying to enjoy ourselves a bit while we're here. What's right for me isn't necessarily right for you. So do whatever bring you the most joy when you listen to music. That's the main thing. The best systems are those ones that are so hard to turn off that you rarely get to sleep before midnight.

Cheers,
Charlie Hansen
Ayre Acoustics, Inc.
post #1221 of 1423
How does the DSD upgrade compare to the MP upgrade in my old C5Xe as far as improvement in sound?
post #1222 of 1423
Hello CRTGuy,

Sorry for the late reply. Remember that the DSD upgrade to the DX-5 only applies to the two-channel analog outputs. But I would say that the improvement for the DSD upgrade on the DX-5 is roughly twice what the MP upgrade for the CX-5 was. Add in the fact that the DX-5 was designed about 5 years after the C-5xe and there is a fairly large difference between the sound of the latest DX-5 and the latest C-5xe.

BUT, unless you want to watch video, I would wait. The C-5xeMP is still a fantastic machine. If you are only using it for audio and have no interest in video, I would wait. Sometime in the next year Ayre will introduce some new products that will be a better fit for what you need. But if you are watching video with SOME source (and I would assume that you are or you wouldn't have the moniker that you do now, the DX-5 is going to be head and shoulders above any other source. Just go back and re-read the review here:

http://www.hometheater.com/content/ayre-acoustics-dx-5-universal-av-engine

Thanks,
Charles Hansen
post #1223 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Hansen View Post

Hello CRTGuy,

Sorry for the late reply. Remember that the DSD upgrade to the DX-5 only applies to the two-channel analog outputs. But I would say that the improvement for the DSD upgrade on the DX-5 is roughly twice what the MP upgrade for the CX-5 was. Add in the fact that the DX-5 was designed about 5 years after the C-5xe and there is a fairly large difference between the sound of the latest DX-5 and the latest C-5xe.

BUT, unless you want to watch video, I would wait. The C-5xeMP is still a fantastic machine. If you are only using it for audio and have no interest in video, I would wait. Sometime in the next year Ayre will introduce some new products that will be a better fit for what you need. But if you are watching video with SOME source (and I would assume that you are or you wouldn't have the moniker that you do now, the DX-5 is going to be head and shoulders above any other source. Just go back and re-read the review here:

http://www.hometheater.com/content/ayre-acoustics-dx-5-universal-av-engine

Thanks,
Charles Hansen
Thanks for the reply.
I should have been more specific. I HAD an C5 and had it upgraded with the MP and was very pleased . Last year I traded the C5 for my current DX-5 and I do listen to the analog outs primarily for CD playback. I do also watch a lot of video but no longer on a CRT. I am still interested in the RELATIVE improvement comparing comparing the two upgrades. Thanks again for your response.
post #1224 of 1423
Sorry about the typos and poor grammar.
post #1225 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by crtguy View Post

Thanks for the reply.
I should have been more specific. I HAD an C5 and had it upgraded with the MP and was very pleased . Last year I traded the C5 for my current DX-5 and I do listen to the analog outs primarily for CD playback. I do also watch a lot of video but no longer on a CRT. I am still interested in the RELATIVE improvement comparing comparing the two upgrades. Thanks again for your response.

Hello EX-CRT Guy smile.gif

OK, now I'm with you. The DX-5 was always better than the C-5. It was more expensive as it had all of the video circuitry also. But both the video and he audio were better. The video was better because it could play Blu-ray and it had a DVDO scaler chip rather than just the deinterlacer of the D-1 and DX-7. It was worse for CRT guys because there were no analog video outputs. If I thought there were a market for a top-flight analog output, it would be really fun to make an over-the-top VIDEO D/A converter for CRT guys. But it would be a money losing proposition, especially with 4K looming. I don't think there is a CRT ever made that would do 4K (except maybe a $2 million USAF flight simulator biggrin.gif )

Sonically, the DX-5 started with the MP filters that were in the C-5 upgrade, so it had a head start, but it also had analog circuitry derived from the KX-R preamp, which was not really retro-fittable to the C-5. Finally with the DSD upgrade, the DX-5 was catapulted to a new level sonically. I would put it up against any player at any price -- plus it has video. But a lot of audiophiles are afraid of video, so it doesn't sell well to them. Their loss....
post #1226 of 1423
Dear Charles,

do you know what I'm dreaming of, realizing that HDMI will ever cause some problems?:
A "DX-6DSD" having ONE HDMI output for video only, having upgraded analog circuits for 6 channels to connect as 5.1 channel bypass, so for audio an analog-only machine with 6 channels having the quality of upgraded stereo DX-5.
Sounds a bit retro, but this is what I would buy after the DX-5. Would be a clear statement for audio quality.

Kind regards

Werner
post #1227 of 1423
Dear Werner,

Yes, going to pure analog audio outputs would solve many problems. The biggest advantage is that jitter across the transmission interface would no longer be a problem, which would improve the sound quality noticeably. Also, there has only ever been ONE SSP that have had an "adequate" quality volume control -- the Theta Casablanca (at least before the company was sold) used a FET switch + metal film resistor network, ALMOST as good as what we put in our $3500 integrated amplifier.

But it would also creates many problems:

1) Bass Management in the Oppo "engine" is "crude" at best and poor at worst. The only way around this would be to use 5 FULL RANGE loudspeakers (large floorstanders) and a GOOD powered subwoofer for the LFE.

2) Time delays in the Oppo "engine" are "crude" at best, but good enough not to cause a problem.

3) You won't get any "Room Correction", but this is actually a GOOD thing. Room Correction is just a stupid scam designed to sell you a new SSP that has a useless feature that you don't need. Room correction can only work properly at ONE POINT in the room. Right off the bat you are screwed unless you only have one ear... Secondly, it is just a BAND-AID that treats the symptoms but does NOTHING to solve the actual problems.

4) Just try to find a six channel preamplifier that has decent volume controls. The ONLY one that I know of is an Audio Research that was made for a couple of years perhaps ten years ago. I don't know how good it was but I'm sure that it was 10x better than what is in any other SSP beside a Casablanca III.

5) It would roughly DOUBLE the cost of the DX-5. This assumes that the sales volume remained the same. But in actuality the sales volume would be reduced by a factor of 10x as most people have been brainwashed into thinking that "digital is better than analog". So the real cost would approach $30,000 US retail. At that price, people would want solid machined metal drawers and things like that. So we would probably end up selling zero of them.

The real answer is simply to find a manufacturer of an SSP that has more than just rocks in their heads and actually includes Audio Rate Control. That would solve all of the jitter problems very easily. Sony has completely discontinued HATS as far as I can tell (they seem to be much more interested in simply staying in business than actually advancing the state of performance of home theater systems). But there are still many Pioneer player/receivers that included PQLS.

Currently we are having some informal discussions with Pioneer. There are no guarantees, but if everything goes well, a collaboration between Pioneer and Ayre could easily result in the best SSP's ever made. With their manufacturing expertise, they wouldn't have to cost and arm and a leg. However, they may begin making these types of things with their TAD Labs division and then have some of their features "trickle down" to first the "Elite" series, and finally to the normal Pioneer lineup.

Best,
Charles Hansen
Ayre Acoustics, Inc.

EDIT: I forgot to mention that our new preamplifiers (KX-R and KX-5) that include the AyreLink system will gang together automatically to create as many channels as you need. Not a cheap solution, but the best performing one available.
post #1228 of 1423
Hi Charles,

Probably mentioned before, but it's excellent you communicate this way with customers.

My first Ayre was a CX-7e MP which I enjoyed for a few years, after I bought a Wadia 381i.
Now I have purchased a DX-5, great player, although it took some time to get my head around the flimsy cd-tray.

I have some hybrid CD/SACD's, when I play the CD layer on my Wadia it exceeds the performance of the SACD playback on the DX-5.
(Soundstage, dynamics, resolution)
When playing a CD in both machines the performance is closer, but the Wadia still wins.
Will the DSD upgrade enhance the SACD playback ? and what will exactly be the improvement (for instance in Soundstage, dynamics, resolution)
(Price of the upgrade will be 1500/1750,- Euro here in Holland, as per information from dutch importer)

Now the part where I think the DX-5 is great, I am using a laptop (SSD drives, no fan) and a Wirworld Platinum USB cable to connect to the DX-5, here the soundstage, dynamics and resolution are great.
(with Foobar and tablet remote it is a treat to play high res music)
Also the Blu ray concerts are a pleasure to watch.

Regards,

Olaf
post #1229 of 1423
Hi Charles,

Probably mentioned before, but it's excellent you communicate this way with customers.

My first Ayre was a CX-7e MP which I enjoyed for a few years, after I bought a Wadia 381i.
Now I have purchased a DX-5, great player, although it took some time to get my head around the flimsy cd-tray.

I have some hybrid CD/SACD's, when I play the CD layer on my Wadia it exceeds the performance of the SACD playback on the DX-5.
(Soundstage, dynamics, resolution)
When playing a CD in both machines the performance is closer, but the Wadia still wins.
Will the DSD upgrade enhance the SACD playback ? and what will exactly be the improvement (for instance in Soundstage, dynamics, resolution)
(Price of the upgrade will be 1500/1750,- Euro here in Holland, as per information from dutch importer)

Now the part where I think the DX-5 is great, I am using a laptop (SSD drives, no fan) and a Wirworld Platinum USB cable to connect to the DX-5, here the soundstage, dynamics and resolution are great.
(with Foobar and tablet remote it is a treat to play high res music)
Also the Blu ray concerts are a pleasure to watch.

Regards,

Olaf
post #1230 of 1423
Quote:
Originally Posted by imprezap2 View Post

I have some hybrid CD/SACD's, when I play the CD layer on my Wadia it exceeds the performance of the SACD playback on the DX-5.
(Soundstage, dynamics, resolution)
When playing a CD in both machines the performance is closer, but the Wadia still wins.
Will the DSD upgrade enhance the SACD playback ? and what will exactly be the improvement (for instance in Soundstage, dynamics, resolution)
(Price of the upgrade will be 1500/1750,- Euro here in Holland, as per information from dutch importer)

Now the part where I think the DX-5 is great, I am using a laptop (SSD drives, no fan) and a Wirworld Platinum USB cable to connect to the DX-5, here the soundstage, dynamics and resolution are great.
(with Foobar and tablet remote it is a treat to play high res music)
Also the Blu ray concerts are a pleasure to watch.

Hello Olaf,

With the DSD upgrade, EVERYTHING that comes out of the analog two channel jacks sounds twice as good as before. I would have thought that it was even possible, but I kid you not. It just kicks everything up to a new level that I didn't even know was there.

The only thing I've seen written by customers is at: http://www.computeraudiophile.com/f6-dac-digital-analog-conversion/ayre%92s-%24500-qb-9-dsd-upgrade-sonic-report-16777/

The problem is that we are way behind in our upgrade program. We've brought out four brand new products plus two upgrade in the last 6 or 8 months. (All that time cooped up in the hospital, I guess) Then we are making updates for the R series -- KX-R, VX-R, MX-R. So everything is moving along as fast as we can get it going.

For logistical reasons we are updating the US dealer's demo models first. Then we will update those PCB and send them overseas. We will get a group of about 30 to 40 total boards for circulation overseas. One distributor in the Far East has already ordered 20 of them. We will only give them 10 to start with and spread the other ten around to other distributors, then as we keep getting boards returned to us we will update them and return them The biggest bottle-neck will be shipping time. Nobody wants to ship one PCB at a time as it costs about the same as shipping 10 PCB's But they have to be timely and turn them around quickly. We can't stock 1000 PCB's just because the distributor's technician wants to go on vacation or they shipping clerk won't send back less than 25 boards at a time to save on cost.

I've never been a fan of the Wadia sound, so as always, you'll need to listen for yourself and make up your own mind.

Best regards,
Charles Hansen
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