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The official "Theta" thread - Page 148

post #4411 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

Selling 25 units is DIY in my estimation. That's what he plans to sell for his modified players. This is certainly not apples to apples.

25 would be his complete modified players (around $5K I believe). How many powersupplies he is hoping to sell through audiocom we don't know. It is certainly a garage operation, but not a DIY operation.
post #4412 of 6795
Any word on Dirac Live?
post #4413 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

I agree. When you mod, it's almost impossible to recover any of your money. This has to be factored into the equation if you resale your gear as we do.

True. I only care about depreciation. So if a fully depreciated Theta Compli showed up with the linear powersupply I would rather buy that than doing my own mod and writing of the entire cost of the mod. As it stands, the cost for the Dr. Lee mod is so low it is a moot point.
post #4414 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

When you Oppo is the same age, you'll be lucky to get 10 pounds. But for sure, at that point,you will get about .00025 pounds for the mods.biggrin.gif

True indeed. I consider the Oppo to be almost a "disposable item". Would I like something better? Probably. Am I prepared to pay $3.5k for an upgrade? It will take a lot to convince me. At the moment, I'm much more inclined to buy a BDP-1 to upgrade all my 2-channel audio that way and have a play with a linear power supply for $239 for the Oppo (installing it would be fun). Having said that I'm prepared to hear what Theta has to say and I eagerly await the launch of their new products. I just hope they have a lot to say. When they first launched the Compli they faced a lot of criticism for lack of transparency. I applaud the fact that they came out with more detail on the upgrades they introduced. I hope they make an even more detailed and bold attempt to be convincing this time around.
post #4415 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

Must be nice to clone all the hard work Charles Hansen has done. Now that's cheap research. He cites Ayre quite a bit I believe.

I think he merely has a great deal of respect for what Ayre have done and uses them as an example.

I don't think he's done anything different from what Theta's done. He took a good product and, given his background and personal interests, decided to figure out if he can make it better. The only difference is he started this for fun and now he's realised that perhaps it can be commercialised. Whether you call that DIY or not I don't think matters. Were I to purchase his clock upgrade I certainly wouldn't "do it [my]self". I would send him my main board and have him do the rewiring for me. (He's offered to do this.) Russ Andrews in the UK has done exactly the same thing. How do you think Paul Hynes started his power supply business? There are countless examples of people with skill and curiosity that developed enhancements to existing products and eventually commercialised them.
Edited by stevekale - 9/27/12 at 11:33am
post #4416 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevekale View Post

I think he merely has a deal of respect for what Ayre have done and uses them as an example.

Either that or he spend $10K on the Ayre player shipped it to Korea and reversed engineered the mods. Yeah right......
post #4417 of 6795
Rather skilled DIY, at least it is to the casual observer:

post #4418 of 6795
Regarding the 4K playback or upscale possibilities of some BD players (and pre/pros), as it was commented in a few posts, I think you may want to know that the Casablanca III HD cannot currently passthru the bandwidth required by any of the three 4K formats in the 1.4 HDMI spec, which require at least 297 Mhz.

The HDMI chip implemented by Theta Digital can only handle up to 225 Mhz (and 12 bit Deep Color) and there are no plans arranged for an upgrade to meet the required bandwidth for 4K.

If you have a 4K projector that accepts 4K (Sony 1000, I own one) a parallel HDMI wire to its second HDMI input would be the solution for those that want to experiment with external 4K scaling to test who does a better upscaling job, or when 4KBD is implemented (at which time I plan to run the extra HDMI cable to the ceiling anyway to avoid any video steps between 4K devices).
Edited by R. La Maestra - 9/27/12 at 1:29pm
post #4419 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by edorr View Post

25 would be his complete modified players (around $5K I believe). How many powersupplies he is hoping to sell through audiocom we don't know. It is certainly a garage operation, but not a DIY operation.
His already sold the 25 for 3500.00 each. If you put this into perspective, he's making a far greater profit than Theta with no U.S service locations, no U.S. tech support, no CEDIA demo, etc. Not for my money.
post #4420 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by R. La Maestra View Post

Regarding the 4K playback or upscale possibilities of some BD players (and pre/pros), as it was commented in a few posts, I think you may want to know that the Casablanca III HD cannot currently passthru the bandwidth required by any of the three 4K formats in the 1.4 HDMI spec, which require at least 297 Mhz.
The HDMI chip implemented by Theta Digital can only handle up to 225 Mhz (and 12 bit Deep Color) and there are no plans arranged for an upgrade to meet the required bandwidth for 4K.
If you have a 4K projector that accepts 4K (Sony 1000, I own one) a parallel HDMI wire to its second HDMI input would be the solution for those that want to experiment with external 4K scaling to test who does a better upscaling job, or when 4KBD is implemented (at which time I plan to run the extra HDMI cable to the ceiling anyway to avoid any video steps between 4K devices).
The HDMI card on the Casablanca HD is the easiest part to upgrade. No plans for now but it's too easy to do for it to be a concern. I have never really switched video through my processor at any rate but I understand the desire to do so.
post #4421 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevekale View Post

Rather skilled DIY, at least it is to the casual observer:
It should be, he's making more money on it than Theta. Those homemade power supplies you all have "trotted out," are made from cheap Korea parts and there is nothing high-end about them. I think this is a new level of despise for the high-end biggrin.gif . If it went through high-end distribution channels, it's cost would be at least 14k but he's still making a greater profit. Can't see how you can accept this but disparage Theta? Really? Stuff from some guys's garage? I will bet that I will actually be able to buy a new Theta Compli Blu 3D with warranty and great tech support for less than this player. Now this is more of an apples to apples comparison. Where's the special DSP algorithms that a player like this has to have?rolleyes.gif
Edited by Bulldogger - 9/28/12 at 3:03pm
post #4422 of 6795
Who is disparaging Theta? Suggest you read the posts again.rolleyes.gif I wouldn't buy the Respect product from Dr Lee at $3.5k either. You've completely and utterly missed the point of the discussion (unsurprisingly).

PS: what Theta products do you actually own and which have you bought new?

PPS: What DSP algorithms are you expecting in the transport?
Edited by stevekale - 9/29/12 at 1:29am
post #4423 of 6795
This discussion about power supplies got me to thinking about the Gen VIII. Some have asked me why it is to big compared to Dac X? I think you can see why if you look at the power supply. It occupies almost half of the chassis. Here we are talking about power supplies for DIGITAL boards. Part of the function of the Gen VIII is as a preamp but it had the massive power supply before that. You can't have it both ways. Do power supplies matter for Blu-ray players and dacs? If so then show the power supply of the supposedly equal dacs? If Theta reduced the capabilites of the power supply, you can see that they could easily make a smaller dac. To reduce the size of the dac and keep the dac,you would need two separate boxes. I think many miss this obvious point when they question the size of the Gen VIII.

When I listen to the Gen VIII, I hear dynamics that are just not there with the other dacs that I have tried unless combined with a separate two channel preamp which itself has a massive power supply. My suggestion is that when you seek the advice of others, you ask the type of music they listen to most. Classical music and chamber music in particuliar is a lot different from Rock guitar riffs and dynamic drum solos. Most of the reviews are by those who listen to classical. I would suggest that their is no substitute for hands on evaluation. Otherwise it is, "And Kal says... And Kal says...," only to in the end add a homemade power supply to the Oppo and conclude that you disagree;) with what "Kal says.." I think Kal is a great reviewer. One of the better ones for sure. Reviews have their place.

Here is a pic of the Gen VIII power supply with a Seagate 2tb External drive placed next for reference.

If you look at the other side you can see how much smaller the dacs could be without the supply
post #4424 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

I would suggest that their is no substitute for hands on evaluation. Otherwise it is, "And Kal says... And Kal says...," only to in the end add a homemade power supply to the Oppo and conclude that you disagree;) with what "Kal says.." I think Kal is a great reviewer. One of the better ones for sure. Reviews have their place.

Can you elaborate? What is the connection between disagreeing (or do you mean agreeing?) "with what Kal says" and ending up with a homemade powersupply in an Oppo? May be I'm just too thick to get it.
post #4425 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by edorr View Post


Can you elaborate? What is the connection between disagreeing (or do you mean agreeing?) "with what Kal says" and ending up with a homemade powersupply in an Oppo? May be I'm just too thick to get it.

I, too, am curious about this as I was one of the earliest big fans of the Gen VIII.

post #4426 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

I, too, am curious about this as I was one of the earliest big fans of the Gen VIII.
His power supply is in the Oppo 93. Previous discussions about that the Compli Blu involve his referencing your experience with differences in transports for HDMI. Sure he's not using HDMI but he is using a digital connection which is also reportedly benefiting from an improved power supply.

My comments were not about the Gen VIII in that regard. My contention is that if he believe that power supplies matter for Blu-ray players, then the quality of the power supply should always matter? Does it then matter for dacs? I posted pics of the Gen VIII for comparison to what I see in other dacs.
post #4427 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

His power supply is in the Oppo 93. Previous discussions about that the Compli Blu involve his referencing your experience with differences in transports for HDMI. Sure he's not using HDMI but he is using a digital connection which is also reportedly benefiting from an improved power supply.

Dead wrong. In fact, the only time any inferences could be made from one of Kal's reviews about the impact of powersupply on digital output was his review of the Ayre DX-5. If I remember correctly his concluded the standard A/V HDMI in the Ayre was equivalent to the Oppo 93. Since the only difference between the Ayre DX-5 and the Oppo on the standard HDMI output is the upgraded powersupply in the Ayre, this means to his ears just upgrading the PS in an Oppo did not make a difference. There was a distinct difference on the Ayre's HDMI audio only output, but this output has a modified digital circuit.

The reason I upgraded the powersupply in my Oppo is threefold. (1) The supplier of the digi out board said his board could benefit from linear PS, (2) Folks on this forum reported the Compli BLu with linear PS sounds better than the standard Oppo, (3) for $250 bucks I have absolutely nothing to lose, assuming it is not going to sound any worse. This had absolutely nothing to do with anything Kal ever wrote.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

My comments were not about the Gen VIII in that regard. My contention is that if he believe that power supplies matter for Blu-ray players, then the quality of the power supply should always matter? Does it then matter for dacs? I posted pics of the Gen VIII for comparison to what I see in other dacs.

What's your point? I totally agree. This is about the least controversial issue in high end audio. Every serious high-end company upgrades powersupplies - they can't be all smoking dope. Am I on the record suggesting powersupplies don't matter for DACs? You're just arguing for the sake of arguing.
post #4428 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by edorr View Post


What's your point? I totally agree. This is about the least controversial issue in high end audio. Every serious high-end company upgrades powersupplies - they can't be all smoking dope. Am I on the record suggesting powersupplies don't matter for DACs? You're just arguing for the sake of arguing.
The power supply in the Theta Gen VVII is superior to the PS Audio dac and the others you have mentioned as alternatives and is vastly superior to some of those dac's power supply. It's the reason for the dynamics. Sure you can make a dac that is the equal to the Gen VIII minus the power supply. If you ever actually heard the Gen VIII then you would understand that the PS Audio dac just can't duplicate those dynamics. I heard both. It's not close in that regard, not remotely close.

Theta is forging ahead with room correction. Dirac is different from Trinnov for sure. How has your experience with Trinnov been? Any reservations with the product?
Edited by Bulldogger - 9/30/12 at 11:09am
post #4429 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by edorr View Post

Dead wrong. In fact, the only time any inferences could be made from one of Kal's reviews about the impact of powersupply on digital output was his review of the Ayre DX-5. If I remember correctly his concluded the standard A/V HDMI in the Ayre was equivalent to the Oppo 93. Since the only difference between the Ayre DX-5 and the Oppo on the standard HDMI output is the upgraded powersupply in the Ayre, this means to his ears just upgrading the PS in an Oppo did not make a difference..
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1263210/theta-compli-blu-in-house#post_18912938 Major difference in the Compli Blu is the power supply.
post #4430 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by edorr View Post

. Since the only difference between the Ayre DX-5 and the Oppo on the standard HDMI output is the upgraded powersupply in the Ayre, this means to his ears just upgrading the PS in an Oppo did not make a difference.t.
Any yet, here you are with a homemade power supply in your Oppo instead of what Kal says and posting this multiple times when the Compli Blu has been mention that Kal found no difference in transports. My point.,
post #4431 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

The power supply in the Theta Gen VVII is superior to the PS Audio dac and the others you have mentioned as alternatives and is vastly superior to some of those dac's power supply. It's the reason for the dynamics. Sure you can make a dac that is the equal to the Gen VIII minus the power supply. If you ever actually heard the Gen VIII then you would understand that the PS Audio dac just can't duplicate those dynamics. I heard both. It's not close in that regard, not remotely close.
Theta is forging ahead with room correction. Dirac is different from Trinnov for sure. How has your experience with Trinnov been? Any reservations with the product?

So because the GenVIII has a beefier powersupply it is by implication a better DAC than the PWD MKII? I am 100% sure you have never heard a GenVIII side by side with a PWD MKII in the same system and done an A/B comparison. Any other way of concluding which is the better DAC is useless. I have not either, and for that simple reason, I never claimed the PWD MKII is better than the GenVIII. I have absoluty no way of knowing. I do know you can pick up a used MKII for $2000 and a used GenVIII will still set you back $5000 so it better be a whole lot better. You're the one making claims about what sounds better base on who designed it, pictures of the powersupply and whether it has an analog or digtial volume control, not me. I actually listen to stuff. For the record, I will be trying out an Aestehix pandora and the new MSB analog DAC in a direct shootout against he PWD MKII. Should be fun! May be I am wasting my time and I should just weigh the powersupply and buy the DAc with the heaviest one smile.gif.
post #4432 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

That Kal says power supplies don't matter for HDMI. 

Never said that.  I would never make such a foolish generalization from a single comparison.  If I observed no difference in comparing two devices, it is reasonable to conclude that the PS cannot have made one in this particular case and in the face of the multiplicity of other components involved.

 

In fact, it is clear that PSs can have important influences on the sound but that is not to say that any two different PSs must sound different.

 

So, please leave me out of this.

post #4433 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

Any yet, here you are with a homemade power supply in your Oppo instead of what Kal says and posting this multiple times when the Compli Blu has been mention that Kal found no difference in transports. My point.,

What point?  I cannot recall having ever used the Compli Blu.

post #4434 of 6795
I never said it was a concern and I agree that it should be easy to implement, at a later cost I assume, and I never used the CB for video switching either, but that ends with the implementation of HDMI.

My point was that I did not agree with the approach of installing a 225 Mhz limited HDMI chip on a $25K unit when chips for the 340 Mhz of the current 1.4 spec have been around for quite a while.

My comment was to inform of the current limitations of the HDMI chip in the CB III to specifically address the relevant posts, so there are no surprses like the 0-255.
Edited by R. La Maestra - 10/1/12 at 10:34am
post #4435 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by R. La Maestra View Post

I never said it was a concern and I agree that it should be easy to implement, at a later cost I assume, and I never used the CB for video switching either, but that ends with the implementation of HDMI.
My point was that I did not agree with the approach of installing a 225 Mhz limited HDMI chip on a $25K unit when chips for the 340 Mhz of the current 1.4 spec have been around for quite a while.
My comment was to inform of the current limitations of the HDMI chip in the CB III to specifically address the relevant posts, so there are no surprses like the 0-255.
Valid point. I see the MDS website mentions that the next generation of HDMI will feature 3.0 Ghz. I don't know how old that information is. The HDMI upgrade for the Casablanca is now almost two years old and development would have started well before that. It will certainly require a new HDMI card or perhaps a "running change," for the processor. http://www.mds.com/categories/hdmi-repeatersswitchers
post #4436 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by edorr View Post

Makes no sense at all. The 95 has upgraded DACs and powersupply for the analog section relative to the 93. If the Compli Blu 3D is a digital transport why use the 95 platform? Gotta be 93 based.
At that price for a digital transport, Theta had better rebuild the entire digital section. This will be interesting.

It is based on the Oppo 95. They have stacks of 95's at the ATI warehouse. ATI sells the "discarded" Oppo analog sections back to Oppo. They chose the 95 because it has a number of upgraded parts over the 93, most importantly the actual transport in the 95 is better than the one in the 93. That would probably explain why my Oppo 95 sounds immensely better than the previous 93 I bought (and promptly returned).

If anyone wants to know more, don't bug me because that is all I know- Call Theta / ATI and talk to Dave. The new Compli Blu 3D should be quite nice and I'll be taking a serious look at it once released. My biggest "wish" on the list was for a balanced digital output. I don't know if that is on the table for the new Theta unit.
post #4437 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by k_lewis View Post

It is based on the Oppo 95. They have stacks of 95's at the ATI warehouse. ATI sells the "discarded" Oppo analog sections back to Oppo. They chose the 95 because it has a number of upgraded parts over the 93, most importantly the actual transport in the 95 is better than the one in the 93. That would probably explain why my Oppo 95 sounds immensely better than the previous 93 I bought (and promptly returned).
If anyone wants to know more, don't bug me because that is all I know- Call Theta / ATI and talk to Dave. The new Compli Blu 3D should be quite nice and I'll be taking a serious look at it once released. My biggest "wish" on the list was for a balanced digital output. I don't know if that is on the table for the new Theta unit.
I believe the motor in the Oppo 95 transport is better. The power supply in the Compli Blu 3D is also different because with the removal of the analog board, there was no need to supply power there. It looks promising.
post #4438 of 6795
Quote:
Originally Posted by k_lewis View Post

They chose the 95 because it has a number of upgraded parts over the 93, most importantly the actual transport in the 95 is better than the one in the 93. That would probably explain why my Oppo 95 sounds immensely better than the previous 93 I bought (and promptly returned).

Could be, but there is no mention of a difference in the transport on the Oppo website (all other 93 - 95 differences are spelled out), and there is a guy on the whatsbestforum saying he spoke with Oppo about differences between 93 and 95 and Oppo told him the transport is the same. In any case, if Theta sells the analog section (DACs and Powersupply I presume) back to Oppo it may be a moot point because the cost of a stripped 95 as the base platform and a 93 is probably very close, if not the same.
post #4439 of 6795
Double checked with Oppo and told no difference in loaders between 93 and 95. It's difficult to second guess Theta without all the info and deals made. Motor info did not come from Theta. Power supply info did.
post #4440 of 6795
After chatting with John Baloff I think there may be some nice changes to the digital section (beyond power supplies) and maybe in the DSD to LPCM conversion. We'll have to wait and see. At any rate, they're still preparing a detailed list of the modifications deployed. Could be interesting. He did make a comment that in effect due to the low quantities they sell the value proposition they offer in the player is stretched thin - I asked him to tempt me with detail.
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