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high-end CD player .. worth it? - Page 9

post #241 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by Floydster View Post

For that price, I can get a really good surround receiver. I would rather see someone push 6 channel surround than to try and revive stereo, which is pretty stone age by comparison.

For that price I would purchase a pair of monitors, sub and a bass management device that, though stone age, would have you scratching your head.
post #242 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

... is a 13 year old design that according to its manufacturer's web site "Is not recommended for new product design".
Please, before you believe in the mantra that old products are always worse than the new ones, LISTEN to one of those "not recommended" true multibit DAC's. They are not recommended because of price and availability, not because the new sigma-delta are better sounding.

For example, AD1861, PCM1704 are still available. Of course, in the case of PCM1704K (24 bit, selected K) for $70, of course is not 'recommended' for el-cheapo DVD players of today.
Edited by SoNic67 - 4/5/13 at 1:04pm
post #243 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by beaveav View Post

Back when I had a Parasound amp in my setup, a visitor once kept referring to my Panasonic amp. Similar name for sure!

Oops! I'm not familiar with Parasound at all.
post #244 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoNic67 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

... is a 13 year old design that according to its manufacturer's web site "Is not recommended for new product design".

Please, before you believe in the mantra that old products are always worse than the new ones, LISTEN to one of those "not recommended" true multibit DAC's.

Listen to products with R-2R DACs? Been there done that.

I never said they necessarily sound bad. I'm willing to stipulate that they are, like many $1 DAC chips, sonically transparent.

Read what I said, not what you may want to feel. I simply eacted to the fact that an obsolete and probably overpriced part is being used with no possible audible benefits.

If would be an audiophile myth if someone claimed that a classic R-2R ladder network DAC sounded different or better from a good Sigma-Delta part costing only a fraction as much, but I don't see anybody doing that.
post #245 of 266
The "$1 DAC" are always sigma-delta and are anything but "transparent". They have their flaws, recognized even by manufacturers. Fast-signal (music programs) behavior for them is way different than steady-state sinusoidal measurements shown in data sheets. Noise modulation of actual signal viewed in time-domain is the key for understanding that.
Sure, for some ears, it makes no difference. Probably mp3's are sounding just fine to you too. Same as for a color blind guy it makes no difference if the grass is green or red.
post #246 of 266
In what universe is 20kHz considered a "fast signal?"
post #247 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoNic67 View Post

The "$1 DAC" are always sigma-delta and are anything but "transparent".

That's a non sequitor, since sigma-delta DACs implement a technology that puts as much of the DAC's operation as possible into the digital domain, and thus makes sonic performance far less dependent on other implementation details. A R-2R DAC with missing codes or or linearity problems can easily happen due to errrors in design, processing or QC, but with sigma-delta that is all but impossible.
Quote:
They have their flaws, recognized even by manufacturers. Fast-signal (music programs) behavior for them is way different than steady-state sinusoidal measurements shown in data sheets.

That DAC chip data sheets contain only steady-state sinusoidal measurements is belied by the first audio DAC data sheet that Google pulled up for me:

http://www.wolfsonmicro.com/documents/uploads/data_sheets/en/WM8740.pdf

Figure 17 & 18 page 22:



Those are related to impulse response which is system response to an obviously non-sinusoidal waveform. They exist in many DAC data sheets. Your claim is in flames!

Your general claim that steady-state measurements fail to show an important audible failing runs contrary to accepted technology such as the various forms of the Fourier transform.
Quote:
Noise modulation of actual signal viewed in time-domain is the key for understanding that.

Please substantiate this. You are claiming the existence of a problem that were it to exist would be readily measurable. You are invited to use a technical paper, spec sheet or your own private measurements to support your rather exceptional claim with evidence of an artifact that is actually audible and not just some microscopic laboratory freak.
post #248 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by beaveav View Post

In what universe is 20kHz considered a "fast signal?"

Well the leading edge of a FS 20 KHz sine wave is about 90% as fast as signals get in the world of 44 KHz sampled audio. ;-)
post #249 of 266
Yeah, dang, good point! smile.gif
post #250 of 266
http://www.ti.com/europe/downloads/Choose%20the%20right%20data%20converter%20for%20your%20application.pdf
This is just a few extracts, you really need to be an electrical engineer with above-average math skills (linear conformal transformation) to understand all this.
Quote:
R-2R—The oldest and still the “cleanest” conversion method
• String—A tapped resistor string
• Delta Sigma—(One bit) Trades resolution in amplitude for resolution in time. Requires a system clock that is faster than the bit data
Quote:
Advantages of R-2R DACs
• Can achieve high performance INL & DNL
• Medium Settling Time Capability
• Low Noise R-2R Ladder
Quote:
Delta-Sigma DAC Properties
• High resolution
• Low Power
• Voltage output
• Good Linearity
• Low Cost
• In Audio: moving noise out of audible range
• Settling time ~2ms
• Long Latency

• Not optimized for DC

See the higher settling time of generic sigma-delta converters. It's part of the conversion, no way around it.
Edited by SoNic67 - 4/10/13 at 6:30am
post #251 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoNic67 View Post

http://www.ti.com/europe/downloads/Choose%20the%20right%20data%20converter%20for%20your%20application.pdf
This is just a few extracts, you really need to be an electrical engineer with above-average math skills (linear conformal transformation) to understand all this.
Quote:
R-2R—The oldest and still the “cleanest” conversion method
• String—A tapped resistor string
• Delta Sigma—(One bit) Trades resolution in amplitude for resolution in time. Requires a system clock that is faster than the bit data
Quote:
Advantages of R-2R DACs
• Can achieve high performance INL & DNL
• Medium Settling Time Capability
• Low Noise R-2R Ladder
Quote:
Delta-Sigma DAC Properties
• High resolution
• Low Power
• Voltage output
• Good Linearity
• Low Cost
• In Audio: moving noise out of audible range
• Settling time ~2ms
• Long Latency

• Not optimized for DC

See the higher settling time of generic sigma-delta converters. It's part of the conversion, no way around it.

The above is an obvious misrepresentation of the cited document. The document is looking at all DACs for all purposes, and among other things makes the point that say delta-sigma is not the best technology for digitizing high resolution fast refresh video.

It in fact does not recommend the use of R-2R DACs for audio.

The reason why settling time specs for Sigma-Delta DAcs looks so mediocre is the fact that they are generally have so much more resolution. It recommends the use of Sigma-Delta for audio.

Note the following 2 slides:

Applications for ∆Σ Converters
• Audio – System clock range ~ 20 to 40 MHz
– Has an Internal Digital Low-Pass Filter
– Optimized noise performance
– Optimized filter in audio frequency for flatness

Applications for R-2R DACs
• Automatic test equipment
• Precision Instrumentation
• Industrial control
• Data Acquisition systems
• Control Loop systems
post #252 of 266
The PCM1704 has equal "resolution" with any S-D DAC. But this is on paper, because no actual DAC have better than 19-20 bit of real resolution, the rest of the bits are just buried below THD+N.

Whatever dude...
Edited by SoNic67 - 4/10/13 at 11:17am
post #253 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Listen to products with R-2R DACs? Been there done that.

I never said they necessarily sound bad. I'm willing to stipulate that they are, like many $1 DAC chips, sonically transparent.

Read what I said, not what you may want to feel. I simply eacted to the fact that an obsolete and probably overpriced part is being used with no possible audible benefits.

If would be an audiophile myth if someone claimed that a classic R-2R ladder network DAC sounded different or better from a good Sigma-Delta part costing only a fraction as much, but I don't see anybody doing that.[Emphasis added.]

Some are claiming audible differences, including designers/manufacturers, though I've not read of any reliable evidence to support those claims:

DSD Comparison to PCM
post #254 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Party View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Listen to products with R-2R DACs? Been there done that.

I never said they necessarily sound bad. I'm willing to stipulate that they are, like many $1 DAC chips, sonically transparent.

Read what I said, not what you may want to feel. I simply eacted to the fact that an obsolete and probably overpriced part is being used with no possible audible benefits.

If would be an audiophile myth if someone claimed that a classic R-2R ladder network DAC sounded different or better from a good Sigma-Delta part costing only a fraction as much, but I don't see anybody doing that.[Emphasis added.]

Some are claiming audible differences, including designers/manufacturers, though I've not read of any reliable evidence to support those claims:

DSD Comparison to PCM

Well claims are easy to make, backing them up is where the rubber hits the road.
post #255 of 266
Because those "smart" individuals are comparing DSD with another DSD...
PCM signals fed into a delta-sigma DAC will be converted internally to DSD before the analog I/V conversion. So they will be plagued by the same issues.
You need to hear a PCM signal converted with a multibit ADC (like those in HDCD consoles) and reproduced via a multibit DAC.
post #256 of 266
I recently changed my digital set up to a MHDT Havana Balanced Dac, which is a tubed, non-oversampling Dac... I'm pretty sure it would measure horribly, but the sound is amazing. Honestly, the first time I've ever had a digital front end that sounds close to my analog set up. What I'm trying to point out is that just because something measures really, really well, doesn't mean that it sounds "right" to YOU.
post #257 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audiojan View Post

I recently changed my digital set up to a MHDT Havana Balanced Dac, which is a tubed, non-oversampling Dac... I'm pretty sure it would measure horribly, but the sound is amazing. Honestly, the first time I've ever had a digital front end that sounds close to my analog set up. What I'm trying to point out is that just because something measures really, really well, doesn't mean that it sounds "right" to YOU/.

That much is true. If you think a turntable sounds "right," then it will take a crappy DAC output to also sound, er, uhm, "right."
post #258 of 266
Hmm... crappy or not, if live music recording like, well, live, then I'd take crappy any day of the week. How do I know what the recording sound like when it was performed live? I recorded and mastered it when I owned a recording studio...
post #259 of 266
So you're saying you made a bad quality recording, then you needed to counter that by having a poor quality DAC in the playback chain? tongue.gif
post #260 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by beaveav View Post

So you're saying you made a bad quality recording, then you needed to counter that by having a poor quality DAC in the playback chain? tongue.gif

I realize that you're probably only trying to be funny, but there's certain things you just don't do. Telling an audio engineer that their recording sucks is kind of telling a mom that their kid is ugly...

Obviously, we're not going to agree to digital playback no matter what, and that's of course ok.
post #261 of 266
It was obviously tongue-in-cheek. I've never heard your recording, so how could I know what it sounds like? rolleyes.gif
post #262 of 266
I still prefer a higher end cd player over a DAC + transport.
post #263 of 266
your source will always be a limiting factor and it's at the head of the chain.. +1 for a good cd player over transport + dac
post #264 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoNic67 View Post

Because those "smart" individuals are comparing DSD with another DSD...
PCM signals fed into a delta-sigma DAC will be converted internally to DSD before the analog I/V conversion. So they will be plagued by the same issues.

What issues might those be?

They only matter if they are audible. Where are the well-done listening tests demonstrating audibility?
Quote:
You need to hear a PCM signal converted with a multibit ADC (like those in HDCD consoles) and reproduced via a multibit DAC.

All you need is converters that meet certain fairly reasonable and in modern times attainable technical standards.

There is no magic involved in multibit, delta-sigma, or DSD conversion. Final results are what matters not the details of how they are achieved. As long as dynamic range of 100 dB or greater, response over the normal audio band within 0.1 dB, and reasonable phase response are obtained, unconditional sonic transparency is guaranteed. Those kind of results can be obtained by any of those 3 means. It then comes down to costs, and price/performance currently gives the nod to delta-sigma.
post #265 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by r3v3nant View Post

your source will always be a limiting factor and it's at the head of the chain.. +1 for a good cd player over transport + dac

The original electronic source is usually a microphone in some venue or recording studio. That is the head of the electronic chain. Ahead of that, you have the room the recording is made in. Just about any good CD player can outperform both of those items.
post #266 of 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoNic67 View Post

Because those "smart" individuals are comparing DSD with another DSD...
PCM signals fed into a delta-sigma DAC will be converted internally to DSD before the analog I/V conversion. So they will be plagued by the same issues.
You need to hear a PCM signal converted with a multibit ADC (like those in HDCD consoles) and reproduced via a multibit DAC.

Mebbe but that is unrealistic and irrelevant for the typical consumer, even in the high end market.

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