The Revolutionary New Marantz SA-10 Player - Page 3 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
Forum Jump: 
 118Likes
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #61 of 179 Old 10-20-2017, 06:00 AM
Member
 
anoutsos's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 179
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 96 Post(s)
Liked: 18
Does anyone know how many independent digital inputs the SA-10 allows? I can see that there is USB-DAC, USB mass storage, TOSLINK and Coaxial. But how many of those are independent? In other words, how many different digital inputs can I switch between (using the input selector knob)?

Thanks
JA Fant likes this.
anoutsos is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #62 of 179 Old 10-23-2017, 11:39 AM
Member
 
AudioThesis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 61
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 30 Post(s)
Liked: 25
You can toggle between USB, Hard Drive, Toslink, and Coaxial. I've never done the hard drive on a Marantz player so I'm not sure how that part works. I am basing this off my experience with the SA-14s1, which I suspect works identically as far as the inputs go.
JA Fant likes this.
AudioThesis is offline  
post #63 of 179 Old 10-23-2017, 05:11 PM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
JA Fant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Prattville AL
Posts: 2,725
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 552 Post(s)
Liked: 1329
Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioThesis View Post
You can toggle between USB, Hard Drive, Toslink, and Coaxial. I've never done the hard drive on a Marantz player so I'm not sure how that part works. I am basing this off my experience with the SA-14s1, which I suspect works identically as far as the inputs go.
Has anyone seen and listened to this player ?
Which dealer/retailer?
JA Fant is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #64 of 179 Old 10-23-2017, 07:54 PM
Member
 
AudioThesis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 61
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 30 Post(s)
Liked: 25
I am a dealer for them but haven't had a chance to hear this one yet. I had a client ALMOST pull the trigger on one but we opted to go another direction. I love their Reference players - some of the best I've heard. I can only imagine right now how good this one sounds.
JA Fant likes this.
AudioThesis is offline  
post #65 of 179 Old 11-27-2017, 12:41 PM
Advanced Member
 
twitch54's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: SE Pa
Posts: 601
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by RWetmore View Post
Why the need to pooh-pooh commysman's report/review? I'm skeptical myself too, but let's not forget that ultimately listening to music and various equipment is a *subjective* experience, and all such equipment easily have measurable differences. We don't listen objectively or in order to establish on scientific level that component A sounds the same (or different) than component B. We listen to enjoy and subjectively evaluate the experience.
you should know better than to question some of the nay sayers around here ....LOL ! after all most of them think a 35 year CD player is just as good !
twitch54 is offline  
post #66 of 179 Old 11-28-2017, 08:17 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
JA Fant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Prattville AL
Posts: 2,725
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 552 Post(s)
Liked: 1329
Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioThesis View Post
I am a dealer for them but haven't had a chance to hear this one yet. I had a client ALMOST pull the trigger on one but we opted to go another direction. I love their Reference players - some of the best I've heard. I can only imagine right now how good this one sounds.
Audio Thesis (love your business name)- where are you located?
JA Fant is offline  
post #67 of 179 Old 11-29-2017, 12:29 PM
Member
 
AudioThesis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 61
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 30 Post(s)
Liked: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by JA Fant View Post
Audio Thesis (love your business name)- where are you located?
Hello JA and thanks for the kind words. I am located in the Dallas area.
JA Fant likes this.
AudioThesis is offline  
post #68 of 179 Old 11-29-2017, 01:22 PM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
JA Fant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Prattville AL
Posts: 2,725
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 552 Post(s)
Liked: 1329
Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioThesis View Post
Hello JA and thanks for the kind words. I am located in the Dallas area.
Excellent! I visit John Fort Audio at least once every year.
I will have to add you to my trip list.

Which brands do you represent?
JA Fant is offline  
post #69 of 179 Old 11-29-2017, 02:58 PM
Member
 
AudioThesis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 61
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 30 Post(s)
Liked: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by JA Fant View Post
Excellent! I visit John Fort Audio at least once every year.
I will have to add you to my trip list.

Which brands do you represent?
I am the US distributor for three Italian brands: MastersounD, North Star Design, and Rosso Fiorentino. I am also a dealer for the following brands:


AURALiC - Dayens - Harbeth - iFi - Marantz - Martin Logan - Parasound - Polk Audio - Sonner Audio - Triode Corporation - Usher Audio - Wireworld


I've sent a couple of clients to John Fort over the past few years. I do nothing/know nothing in the analog world and he has experience there. I realized how much it would cost to get it 'right' and the entry was too rich for my blood. Even if the gear was affordable, accumulating a decent library of tunes is not when your selections frequently go for $25-35 per record.
JA Fant likes this.
AudioThesis is offline  
post #70 of 179 Old 11-29-2017, 03:15 PM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
JA Fant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Prattville AL
Posts: 2,725
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 552 Post(s)
Liked: 1329
Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioThesis View Post
I am the US distributor for three Italian brands: MastersounD, North Star Design, and Rosso Fiorentino. I am also a dealer for the following brands:


AURALiC - Dayens - Harbeth - iFi - Marantz - Martin Logan - Parasound - Polk Audio - Sonner Audio - Triode Corporation - Usher Audio - Wireworld


I've sent a couple of clients to John Fort over the past few years. I do nothing/know nothing in the analog world and he has experience there. I realized how much it would cost to get it 'right' and the entry was too rich for my blood. Even if the gear was affordable, accumulating a decent library of tunes is not when your selections frequently go for $25-35 per record.

Nice company- AudioThesis

John Fort runs my kind of store- Audio gear everywhere-floor, chair, couches, tabletops, racks, bookcases...etc.

There is nothing wrong w/ sharing clients. Dallas TX has plenty of clients for everyone. I even like Audio Concepts off of Preston. Dallas has it "going on" to be sure.
I wish Houston could pick up the pace in this regard. San Antonio and Austin has a few nice places as well. Corpus Christi is out, not sure about El Paso?

I hope that you get to audition the Marantz SA-10 , I would like a comparison w/ the Parasound CD-1 player.
JA Fant is offline  
post #71 of 179 Old 01-03-2018, 09:10 AM
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked: 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mupi View Post
This is my main concern using the analog output from a player. I need to use bass management on the AVR as I dont have full range speakers. In that case the AVR has to do A to D and then D to A. So part of the improvement made by the player may be lost. If I am using a $7000 CD player (hypothetically speaking), I need to make sure what is between the CD player and the speakers does not change what the player ouputs. Otherwise it doesnt justify the high cost of the source.
This is the dilemma I have. I don't find my budget in the rarefied ground of this Marantz, but my pedestrian ears were quite pleased with the DAC quality in my Yamaha BD-A1060 using balanced connections to my amp. However, as clear and detailed as it was - nothing makes my system sound better than a little bit of room correction to fix a bass mode problem at around 70Hz. Having heard the before and after of that correction - no analog-only amp has quite pleased me. In the end I have my integrated amp in an amp-only mode being fed by the pre-outs on my AVR and run everything through that. So now I'm just passing that DSD to my middling Marantz AVR over HDMI which probably does a DSD to PCM conversion on it before applying room corrections. But - that bass mode is gone and the overall effect is pretty nice. At that point - what is the point of DSD to begin with? Might as well just re-encode to FLAC and be done with the bother. That's the main reason that when I upgraded to 4K I didn't bother with the Oppo 205 and just got the 203. Either I'm passing DSD over HDMI or I'm phasing out DSD entirely - why bother spending money on a nicer set of DACs at the component end?
noears and JA Fant like this.
elCheapoDeluxe is offline  
post #72 of 179 Old 02-23-2018, 02:51 AM
Member
 
anoutsos's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 179
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 96 Post(s)
Liked: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by LFEer View Post
The most likely reason for that is level mismatch.
Sorry for reverting to a previous conversation, but can someone explain to me the relevance of level matching in comparisons between amplifiers, DACs, etc.? Is louder, for example, supposed to sound better?
anoutsos is offline  
post #73 of 179 Old 02-24-2018, 09:23 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Jack D Ripper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Burpelson Air Force Base
Posts: 1,445
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 168 Post(s)
Liked: 542
Quote:
Originally Posted by anoutsos View Post
Sorry for reverting to a previous conversation, but can someone explain to me the relevance of level matching in comparisons between amplifiers, DACs, etc.? Is louder, for example, supposed to sound better?
Generally, yes. This is because human hearing is not linear, and so a difference in volume is subjectively perceived as a difference in tonal quality. The louder one will seem to have more bass, and slightly more treble. This is why they put "loudness compensation" controls on so many vintage receivers and preamps, so that when one is listening to music at a low volume, one could engage the "loudness" control to boost the bass and, to a lesser extent, the treble, to compensate for this aspect of human hearing, to make low volume listening sound more natural.

So, a tiny difference in volume will be perceived as a difference in tonal quality, and that can cause someone to choose one rather than the other, when the only difference is the difference in volume.

Also, of course, with the louder one, one will be able to notice more details in the sound, that are too soft to notice in the one at lower volume.

Consequently, things need to be so close in volume that no human has ever been able to hear the difference in volume, or any ability to hear the difference between the two things could just be a difference in volume, and nothing else. I believe the standard is to within 0.1db, because that is below the smallest difference in volume that anyone has demonstrated the ability to hear.

God willing, we will prevail in peace and freedom from fear and in true health through the purity and essence of our natural fluids. God bless you all.
Jack D Ripper is offline  
post #74 of 179 Old 02-24-2018, 09:38 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Jack D Ripper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Burpelson Air Force Base
Posts: 1,445
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 168 Post(s)
Liked: 542
Quote:
Originally Posted by RWetmore View Post
It should not be. The whole purpose of 'source direct' or 'analog direct' (or whatever a particular brand calls it) is to bypass all digital circuitry and just go straight to and through the amp and out to the speakers.
If a receiver (or preamp) did that, it would likely be bypassing the bass management circuitry, and send a full range signal to the main speakers, and nothing to the subwoofer, with a 2 channel source. I believe that most surround receivers (and preamps) just bypass other processing, but still use the bass management, which typically is done in the digital domain, which means that any analog input must be converted to digital to be so processed, and then back to analog.

Of course, a manufacturer may choose to do things differently, so one would want to look at the manual of the specific receiver in question for a definitive answer in a specific case. Though if the bass management circuitry is still working, you know that it has not bypassed all processing of the signal, as that is processing of the signal.

God willing, we will prevail in peace and freedom from fear and in true health through the purity and essence of our natural fluids. God bless you all.
Jack D Ripper is offline  
post #75 of 179 Old 02-24-2018, 10:24 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Jack D Ripper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Burpelson Air Force Base
Posts: 1,445
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 168 Post(s)
Liked: 542
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mupi View Post
I am wondering how a CD can be made to sound any better. Data between existing sampling points can be added by interpolating the existing data but this does not mean higher resolution is achieved. Right?

Any clean up is basically digital procesing. Right? If audio purists frown upon the idea of using EQ, how do they accept digital processing as improved resolution or accuracy?
If an audiophile objects to using an EQ, then that audiophile should never listen to vinyl, as it is always heavily EQed to go onto the record, and then EQed again in the phono preamp to try to get the sound back to how it was before it was EQed. That is going on with all vinyl; many also are made from something altered in the studio with an EQ to willfully alter the sound, to add bass or whatever (which can be done with pretty much any format). Also, there is nothing wrong with CD sound, for 2 channels. Since I wrote about this before, I will just quote myself to save some typing:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack D Ripper View Post
A couple of things. First of all, CDs still vastly outsell LPs. The fact that CD sales are in decline and LP sales have recently increased does not alter the fact that CDs still vastly outsell LPs.

Second, someone might prefer an LP because of poor mastering done on a particular CD (or other format version). If someone puts crap on a CD, it will be crap. With some old recordings, the original master no longer exists, or no longer exists in good condition, so with some, the best a CD could be would be a copy of an LP.


Also, some people like the distortion of LPs, as it adds a "warmth" to the sound. You can read about some testing at:


Vinyl vs. CD - A Running Commentary - Parts 1 - 5 - Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity

Parts 6-9 start here:

Vinyl vs. CD - A Running Commentary - Parts 6 - 9 - Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity

The whole thing is worth reading, but experience tells me that most people will not bother doing that, so here are some useful quotes:

Now, when the RIAA pre-emphasis curve is applied at recording, and then the de-emphasis curve is applied at playback, the phase shift should cancel out and you end up with a proper phase relationship throughout the audible spectrum. Right? Well, that would be fine if all the recording systems applied the RIAA pre-emphasis curve perfectly, and all our phono stages applied the RIAA de-emphasis curve perfectly.

Guess what? Nothing is perfect out there.

So, we end up with LPs and phono stages that deliver a sound with varying amounts of phase shift in all areas of the audible spectrum, and I feel that this is one of the defining characteristics of the analog LP sound. It delivers a soundstage that is much different than what you would hear from a CD where such EQ curves are not applied.

And, it’s very appealing.

And:

To start, I used 1 kHz sine waves.

Here is a graph of the spectrum generated from the test CD. THD+N was 0.005%. That is very low and very good. Notice that the one distortion peak visible is third order.

At 10 kHz, distortion rose to 0.01%. Again, the one visible peak is third order.

And…(drum roll)…here is what you have been waiting for: The Vinyl Results.
At 1 kHz, 0 dB, distortion was 7%. “Wow, that’s a lot of distortion,” you say. You bet it is, but notice that it is nearly all second order. Also, the noise level contributes to this high number. At best, the noise is 70 dB below the signal, whereas with the CD test, it is more than 100 dB lower. We could measure just the THD, but much of the harmonics are buried in the noise, so this would not be a fair estimation of the resulting sound.
And:

So, what can we say at this point? It seems to me – and this is with some of the very best hi-fi components in the world – that one of the most significant reasons vinyl aficionados love the LP sound is that the distortion is very, very much like that in Pure Class A triode single-ended tube amplifiers. There is a lot of distortion, but it is virtually all second order (even-ordered), which is euphonic, meaning that it is pleasing to the ears.

Basically, the LP format adds distortion to the sound, and the type of distortion that is added tends to be "warm" and pleasing. It is, of course, less accurate, but some may like it.


For the CD haters, here is a good read:

Boston Audio Society - ABX Testing article

Basically, they put a CD quality analog to digital converter and a digital to analog converter in line with various analog sources, and people could not hear the difference in blind listening. In other words, CD quality digital does not audibly degrade the sound of analog, contrary to what many would have you believe.

The reason to do a test that way instead of buying an LP and the CD of the same music is that the mastering is likely to be different and one can often hear differences in mastering (which could include EQ, reverb, dynamic compression, etc.).

From this we see that the CD format is good, though, of course, one can put crap on it and then one will have crap. But it being crap is because of what is put on it, not due to the digital format.
The upshot is, if you want a better sounding CD, your focus should be on better speakers or room acoustics, or a better master recording being put on the CD.

Of course, if you want multichannel sound, then the CD format will not be satisfactory.
Ovation, glangford and G00dband like this.

God willing, we will prevail in peace and freedom from fear and in true health through the purity and essence of our natural fluids. God bless you all.
Jack D Ripper is offline  
post #76 of 179 Old 02-24-2018, 10:30 AM
Member
 
anoutsos's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 179
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 96 Post(s)
Liked: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack D Ripper View Post
Generally, yes. This is because human hearing is not linear, and so a difference in volume is subjectively perceived as a difference in tonal quality. The louder one will seem to have more bass, and slightly more treble. This is why they put "loudness compensation" controls on so many vintage receivers and preamps, so that when one is listening to music at a low volume, one could engage the "loudness" control to boost the bass and, to a lesser extent, the treble, to compensate for this aspect of human hearing, to make low volume listening sound more natural.

So, a tiny difference in volume will be perceived as a difference in tonal quality, and that can cause someone to choose one rather than the other, when the only difference is the difference in volume.

Also, of course, with the louder one, one will be able to notice more details in the sound, that are too soft to notice in the one at lower volume.

Consequently, things need to be so close in volume that no human has ever been able to hear the difference in volume, or any ability to hear the difference between the two things could just be a difference in volume, and nothing else. I believe the standard is to within 0.1db, because that is below the smallest difference in volume that anyone has demonstrated the ability to hear.

So, does this imply that I can make an cheap DAC/amp combination sound better than a state-of-the-art one just by turning up the volume on the cheap one by a fraction of a dB? If this is true, it could save a lot of people a lot of money. However, I thought that high-quality DACs/amps should sound better than cheap ones regardless of volume.
anoutsos is offline  
post #77 of 179 Old 02-24-2018, 10:48 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Jack D Ripper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Burpelson Air Force Base
Posts: 1,445
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 168 Post(s)
Liked: 542
Quote:
Originally Posted by anoutsos View Post
So, does this imply that I can make an cheap DAC/amp combination sound better than a state-of-the-art one just by turning up the volume on the cheap one by a fraction of a dB? If this is true, it could save a lot of people a lot of money. However, I thought that high-quality DACs/amps should sound better than cheap ones regardless of volume.
It depends. With a properly made DAC, it should sound as good as it is possible for it to sound. Or, in other words, no human will hear any improvement with a "better" one, when the two are properly level matched and one listens "blind" (there is also the aspect of human bias, which affects all sorts of things besides audio; for example, studies have shown that when someone believes that a wine is expensive, it tastes better to them than when they believe it is cheap, even when they are given the exact same wine).


In the case of well-made modern amplifiers, with them sounding the same when operated within their design parameters, that still does not mean that there is no reason to pick one over the other. For one thing, the design parameters are often different, with one being more suitable for a wider range of speaker impedances, one may be capable of putting out vastly more power, etc. Plus there are unexciting things, like reliability, as some brands have gotten too sloppy in their manufacturing and sometimes make a receiver that is unreliable (which should never happen these days, given the state of knowledge of how to make such things, and how reliable these things can be). But, of course, companies want to maximize profits, so they like to make the things as cheaply as possible.


In my case, I have some nominally 3 ohm Apogee ribbon speakers, and so (when I first got them) I decided to buy an amplifier rated for such a low impedance, instead of just using what I had that was rated for 4 ohms minimum. I might have been able to get away with using what I had (I think I probably could have), but I do sometimes listen at fairly high volumes for extended periods of time, and I did not want my amplifier to go up in a puff of smoke (possibly also destroying the speakers in the process). It may have been okay, but I did not want to take the chance, and so I purchased a more capable amplifier. At least at low volume, I noticed no difference in sound whatsoever. Of course, I did not buy the amplifier to improve the sound; I bought it to prevent damage from using an amplifier in a manner not consistent with the warnings on the back. Since I could afford buying a better amplifier (though I saved a lot of money by buying it used), I figure it is better to be safe than sorry, as the trite old saying goes.

So when one pays attention to the science of what is going on, one still often has reason to not buy the cheapest piece of equipment one can find. (In fact, the science will tell you not to, when one finds things that are very cheap that measure very badly.)


You might be interested in the discussion in this thread:

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/173-2-...snake-oil.html

It is long, but it should help with your questions.

God willing, we will prevail in peace and freedom from fear and in true health through the purity and essence of our natural fluids. God bless you all.

Last edited by Jack D Ripper; 02-24-2018 at 02:14 PM.
Jack D Ripper is offline  
post #78 of 179 Old 02-24-2018, 11:39 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 339
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 197 Post(s)
Liked: 221
If vinyl lovers hate EQ, what do they think preemphasis is?

And what does preemphasis say about the accuracy of reproduction in the first place?
CruelInventions likes this.
jsrtheta is offline  
post #79 of 179 Old 02-24-2018, 02:28 PM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Jack D Ripper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Burpelson Air Force Base
Posts: 1,445
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 168 Post(s)
Liked: 542
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsrtheta View Post
If vinyl lovers hate EQ, what do they think preemphasis is?

And what does preemphasis say about the accuracy of reproduction in the first place?
What it says is that vinyl is not capable of a broad frequency response with a wide dynamic range. To overcome that limitation to a degree, RIAA equalization is applied, before it is put on the record, and then the reverse equalization applied during playback, to try to make it like it was before it was on the record.

A similar concept applies to tape noise reduction (e.g., Dolby [B, C, S, ...], dbx, whatever), to overcome the inherent noise and the limitations of the dynamic range. The dynamic range matters for this, because if there were no limit to the maximum level that could be recorded, one could have all of the music way above the noise floor and effectively get rid of all of the noise. As it is, there is a maximum recording level, and when one is getting there, the distortion and frequency response is inferior to what it is 20dB below maximum.

Analog formats are far from perfect. Of course, with every digital format, there are limitations also, but they tend to be much better, among those that do not use "lossy" compression (i.e., data compression in which data is lost) and that are made for high fidelity (CD, DVD-Audio, SACD, etc.). Typically, with a CD, the noise floor that one encounters is due to the original recording that is put on it, rather than from the format itself. And in all of those cases, the noise floor of the CD format is better than it needs to be.
Ovation and G00dband like this.

God willing, we will prevail in peace and freedom from fear and in true health through the purity and essence of our natural fluids. God bless you all.
Jack D Ripper is offline  
post #80 of 179 Old 02-24-2018, 02:46 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 339
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 197 Post(s)
Liked: 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by anoutsos View Post
So, does this imply that I can make an cheap DAC/amp combination sound better than a state-of-the-art one just by turning up the volume on the cheap one by a fraction of a dB? If this is true, it could save a lot of people a lot of money. However, I thought that high-quality DACs/amps should sound better than cheap ones regardless of volume.
Not to chuck a hand grenade into this discussion, but DACs should sound the same unless they have tube stages, or were designed badly.

Solid state amplifiers, when driven within their limits, without clipping, which have high input impedance and low output impedance, low noise, and a flat frequency response will sound alike in level-matched, double-blind tests. (Level matching means no more that 0.1 dB difference between the amplifiers under test.) The same goes for preamps, more or less.

There are many tests of this, including the infamous Tom Nousaine test comparing a 100w Yamaha integrated amplifier with a 200w, megabuck Pass Labs monoblocks. The test takers, including a high end stereo shop owner and his wife, could not distinguish between them.

Many will argue this point (many, that is, who refuse to do such testing), and even this post could trigger audio Armageddon, but it needed to be said and, hey, you asked.
Jack D Ripper likes this.
jsrtheta is offline  
post #81 of 179 Old 02-24-2018, 03:31 PM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
CharlesJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,697
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 785 Post(s)
Liked: 533
Quote:
Originally Posted by anoutsos View Post
Sorry for reverting to a previous conversation, but can someone explain to me the relevance of level matching in comparisons between amplifiers, DACs, etc.? Is louder, for example, supposed to sound better?
While this has been explained, a simple answer is that when the mismatch is detectable it gives a "tell" to the louder amp or the lower volumed amp and easy to detect the volume difference to a amp from trial to trial. I guess it is like a "tell" of a card player.
CharlesJ is offline  
post #82 of 179 Old 02-24-2018, 08:38 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 339
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 197 Post(s)
Liked: 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlesJ View Post
While this has been explained, a simple answer is that when the mismatch is detectable it gives a "tell" to the louder amp or the lower volumed amp and easy to detect the volume difference to a amp from trial to trial. I guess it is like a "tell" of a card player.
Not sure this tells the story cleanly. The problem with a volume difference is not that it's a "tell" (unless you have very good ears). The problem is that the listener doesn't realize that volume is the only difference he is hearing. When levels are matched closely, but not closely enough, the listener will usually mistake the slightly louder component for being "better," not aware that this is solely due to the volume difference, and not to an actual difference in "sound."

(Though now I read it, I'm not sure I've improved on it at all.)
jsrtheta is offline  
post #83 of 179 Old 02-25-2018, 12:43 AM
Member
 
anoutsos's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 179
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 96 Post(s)
Liked: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlesJ View Post
While this has been explained, a simple answer is that when the mismatch is detectable it gives a "tell" to the louder amp or the lower volumed amp and easy to detect the volume difference to a amp from trial to trial. I guess it is like a "tell" of a card player.
... which then triggers the placebo effect telling the listener that the more expensive amp is better. Right?
anoutsos is offline  
post #84 of 179 Old 02-25-2018, 08:03 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Jack D Ripper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Burpelson Air Force Base
Posts: 1,445
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 168 Post(s)
Liked: 542
Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlesJ View Post
While this has been explained, a simple answer is that when the mismatch is detectable it gives a "tell" to the louder amp or the lower volumed amp and easy to detect the volume difference to a amp from trial to trial. I guess it is like a "tell" of a card player.
It is not simply a "tell." In fact, the difference in volume may not be consciously recognized. But a difference in volume does affect the subjective tonal quality of the sound, due to human hearing not being linear. If you are listening to music loudly that has a lot of bass, slowly turn down the volume. When it gets very soft, most likely, you will judge the sound to have less bass than it did when it was loud. Such a tonal difference may cause one to prefer the sound of one over the other. This was addressed earlier in the thread.
noears likes this.

God willing, we will prevail in peace and freedom from fear and in true health through the purity and essence of our natural fluids. God bless you all.
Jack D Ripper is offline  
post #85 of 179 Old 02-25-2018, 11:55 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
CharlesJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,697
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 785 Post(s)
Liked: 533
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsrtheta View Post
Not sure this tells the story cleanly. The problem with a volume difference is not that it's a "tell" (unless you have very good ears). The problem is that the listener doesn't realize that volume is the only difference he is hearing. When levels are matched closely, but not closely enough, the listener will usually mistake the slightly louder component for being "better," not aware that this is solely due to the volume difference, and not to an actual difference in "sound."

(Though now I read it, I'm not sure I've improved on it at all.)
Yes, it is not a simple issue to explain.
CharlesJ is offline  
post #86 of 179 Old 02-25-2018, 11:57 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
CharlesJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,697
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 785 Post(s)
Liked: 533
Quote:
Originally Posted by anoutsos View Post
... which then triggers the placebo effect telling the listener that the more expensive amp is better. Right?
The placebo effect is there all the time. Blind testing and statistically significant outcome overcomes placebo and subconscious bias.
jsrtheta likes this.
CharlesJ is offline  
post #87 of 179 Old 02-27-2018, 06:25 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
RWetmore's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Brick, New Jersey
Posts: 4,214
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 625 Post(s)
Liked: 388
Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlesJ View Post
The placebo effect is there all the time. Blind testing and statistically significant outcome overcomes placebo and subconscious bias.

But not in regards to long-term listening, and not in regards to listening without being tested, i.e. normal condition listening. Moreover, we're not talking about differences that don't physically exist in space and time. They do, and are easily measurable. Even two of the same model amp or DAC will have measurable differences due to manufacturing variance tolerances.


Listening to music on hi-fi equipment is a *subjective* not objective experience. We don't listen to establish an audible difference at the scientific level. We listen to enjoy the sound, the music, and subjectively evaluate the experience.
RWetmore is offline  
post #88 of 179 Old 02-27-2018, 08:01 AM
Advanced Member
 
Airsculpture's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: English but in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada
Posts: 924
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 495 Post(s)
Liked: 613
Quote:
Originally Posted by RWetmore View Post
But not in regards to long-term listening, and not in regards to listening without being tested, i.e. normal condition listening. Moreover, we're not talking about differences that don't physically exist in space and time. They do, and are easily measurable. Even two of the same model amp or DAC will have measurable differences due to manufacturing variance tolerances.


Listening to music on hi-fi equipment is a *subjective* not objective experience. We don't listen to establish an audible difference at the scientific level. We listen to enjoy the sound, the music, and subjectively evaluate the experience.


Agreed but when it involves laying out unnecessarily large amounts of cash it becomes serious


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
LFEer likes this.

Sony XBR65X900E, Oppo UDP-203 Universal Player
Front L&R - Polk TSx550t, Centre - Polk CSiA6 all in Cherry
Surrounds & Rears - Mission 77DS & Mission 780s
Subwoofer - Polk PSW125 in Cherry
Receiver - Marantz SR6012
Airsculpture is offline  
post #89 of 179 Old 02-27-2018, 08:14 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
RWetmore's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Brick, New Jersey
Posts: 4,214
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 625 Post(s)
Liked: 388
Quote:
Originally Posted by anoutsos View Post
However, I thought that high-quality DACs/amps should sound better than cheap ones regardless of volume.

Not necessarily 'better', but they could sound somewhat different. They might have better specs, but whether it translates to preferable sound quality is subjective from person to person, given their ears, their hearing acuity, their other equipment and how it all interacts with the DAC, amp, cables or whatever.


The differences are generally in tone quality or 'tone color' as well as frequency emphasis. They're all differently non-linear, active circuit devices with easily measurable differences. The question is whether they're audible to any one particular person in his or her listening conditions, and even if they are, which he or she prefers. For each person, it's ultimately all subjective.

Last edited by RWetmore; 02-27-2018 at 08:39 AM.
RWetmore is offline  
post #90 of 179 Old 02-27-2018, 08:38 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
RWetmore's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Brick, New Jersey
Posts: 4,214
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 625 Post(s)
Liked: 388
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack D Ripper View Post
With a properly made DAC, it should sound as good as it is possible for it to sound. Or, in other words, no human will hear any improvement with a "better" one, when the two are properly level matched and one listens "blind".

No, this conclusion and position is secular religion. This has not anywhere near been established at the scientific level. Not even close. Now, they should sound far more alike than different, and more expensive ones might not be preferable. Many might even sound indistinguishable from one another to a lot of people.


Just because under certain testing conditions, which virtually always differ significantly from normal listening conditions, in some tests, people were not able to reliable discern a difference doesn't even come close to establishing that no human under all listening conditions cannot hear a difference. Or constitutes some sort of 'scientific proof' that justifies pooh-poohing anyone who claims to hear a difference between amps and DACs (or even cables).


Yes, there is a lot of snake oil in hi-fi and more expensive isn't always preferable, but taking it to the extreme you have (and others like Arny K.) isn't science. It's secular religion, IMO.

Last edited by RWetmore; 02-27-2018 at 08:47 AM.
RWetmore is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply CD Players & Dedicated Music Transports

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off