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Audio Mirror NOS DAC - Page 3

post #31 of 142
A few positive reviews of the DAC-72.. should I automatically assume the DAC-68 will sound even better? I don't know.

Quote:
I was interested in this particular DAC-72 as it appeared to use some respectable audiophile components with a well constructed PCB and case for what is a very low price and more interestingly it used tubes for the output.
Rather than the 6DJ8 tubes as advertised mine came with a couple of Electro-Harmonix 6922 tubes.

I was well impressed with the construction of this unit but I think an alunium case would have been preferable to the heavy steel case supplied but at the price I suppose that this is not an issue.

It was up against my top of the range Assemblage 2.7 Platinum DAC which cost many times more than this LITE product.

Straight out of the box the bass frequencies sound particularly \"odd\" but after a couple of hours burn-in everything appeared to gell and was sounding like a top class unit.
Now, after a couple of weeks use I can say that I am truely astounded at the capability of this DAC. Everything is etched so clear in the audio picture it produces that I believe that it it the equal of DACS costing thousands of Dollars. it has definately replaced the Assemblage DAC in my sytem and I think it will be a long time before the DAC-72 is relegated to second best.

Finally i would like to say a big THANK YOU to Johnny who was so helpful in answering all my questions and for a fast and friendly service. All good stuff.

John Clark (in the UK)
Quote:
I truly have found a little gem of a DAC, cheap too.
I got mine for 350 .00 delivered.
It uses dual burr brown 24 bit chips, and a tube gain stage with 6dj8/6922 series tubes
It really images, and sounds terrific.
I have owned the Museatex Meitner Melior modified bitstream DAC, and this betters it.
A full review will be coming from me.
This thing is an unbelievable performer and value.
Wanna hear the side walls of the soundstage ?
This will do it.
The build quality is superb, mine is the silver version.
It has a large display with large blue lights to tell you what its doing, looks real cool, and looks expensive too.

I hate the least bit of brightness/hardness, and my ears are quite sensitive to it, since I listen for extended periods of time.
I just continue to be amazed at disc after disc.
Its most shocking attribute is its Imaging, thats the first thing I noticed.
Timbre is there too, of course, and freedom from glare.
I sounds so good stock that I am afraid to roll tubes in it, honest.
But, we all know thats coming, LOL.
Being a Ham, Ka7niq is my callsign, I will wait for this winter.
Here in Florida, there are many Ham Fests where rare tubes are readily availiable at HAM RADIO prices.
If they even THINK you are a stereo guy, the price goes way up, LOL
So, I will put my callsign cap on, and "become" a ham agaon, and get me a bunch of rare NOS tubes to roll this winter.
But honestly, I really dont feel the need.
It sounds great the way it came.
I will be doing a full review of this bargain priced DAC in a month or so.
I just wanted to report my very favorable impressions in case someone was considering buying one.
In my opinion, you cant go wrong.
Chris
post #32 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by elnero
The Dialogue II does have the typical non-os treble roll-off, I don't find it too bad though. Overall I would describe the sound as very organic and natural sounding.

What other non-os DAC have this? I'm not hearing it all with the Audio Mirror. The highs are all there with lots more detail than before. The whole spectrum has become more detailed and textured, with incredible instrument seperation, bigger soundstage all around, and a natural organic sound with lots of flow.

I consider the RS-1 a bright and warm sounding heaphone (with bowls) and the Audio Mirror doesn't change that. It still sound exciting and fast when needed and warm and lush on the slower stuff.
post #33 of 142
Thats the shipping price I got quoted as well, $98. As long as you don't get hit by customs this DAC looks like a sweet deal. The nice thing about the DAC-68 is that it has a digital volume control (I'm using the digital volume control of my CD player currently rather than getting a pre-amp). When you read the descriptions it seems like many of the parts are different. DAC-68 also has a balanced output and up-samples to 192k 24 bit as opposed the the DAC-72 that does 96k 20 bit. Akwok if you look around on ebay you can find a couple of DAC-72s, just make sure they are the 115v version. I'm most likely going to go for the DAC-68, not sure when though
post #34 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by HiGHFLYiN9
Thats the shipping price I got quoted as well, $98. As long as you don't get hit by customs this DAC looks like a sweet deal. The nice thing about the DAC-68 is that it has a digital volume control (I'm using the digital volume control of my CD player currently rather than getting a pre-amp). When you read the descriptions it seems like many of the parts are different. DAC-68 also has a balanced output and up-samples to 192k 24 bit as opposed the the DAC-72 that does 96k 20 bit. Akwok if you look around on ebay you can find a couple of DAC-72s, just make sure they are the 115v version. I'm most likely going to go for the DAC-68, not sure when though
I'm going to go for the DAC-68 too..

Maybe you should take one for the team, get it first..

I'm really tempted now, heh.
post #35 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by iamdone
What other non-os DAC have this? I'm not hearing it all with the Audio Mirror. The highs are all there with lots more detail than before. The whole spectrum has become more detailed and textured, with incredible instrument seperation, bigger soundstage all around, and a natural organic sound with lots of flow.

I consider the RS-1 a bright and warm sounding heaphone (with bowls) and the Audio Mirror doesn't change that. It still sound exciting and fast when needed and warm and lush on the slower stuff.
I've read comments of slight treble roll off in most non-oversampling DAC reviews of read. I'm not sure if it's necessarily a rolloff or just a lack of glare I'm hearing I haven't had enough time to really get a solid listen.
post #36 of 142
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by elnero
So far my impressions of the Dialogue II are extremely positive... For the price these things are going for I don't think you could go wrong.
I don't doubt it a bit. Price isn't a huge issue for me though, I'm new to DACs and was initially thinking of picking up a used Bel Canto 2... just curious if this is of that level. I just bought one of the best dynamic cans there is (the ATH-L3000s) and want something to bring out what it can offer.

The thing is, even though the Bel Canto would be some 3x the price, I could resell it for what I bought it. I'd be losing a bit if I decided to turn around and sell one of these eBay DACS (like $100+ taking shipping costs into account).
post #37 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobeau
I don't doubt it a bit. Price isn't a huge issue for me though, I'm new to DACs and was initially thinking of picking up a used Bel Canto 2... just curious if this is of that level. I just bought one of the best dynamic cans there is (the ATH-L3000s) and want something to bring out what it can offer.

The thing is, even though the Bel Canto would be some 3x the price, I could resell it for what I bought it. I'd be losing a bit if I decided to turn around and sell one of these eBay DACS (like $100+ taking shipping costs into account).
Yeah, that's a big issue with me too. I might just go for a DAC1 or DAC2, depending on how much money I get..
post #38 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by akwok
Yeah, that's a big issue with me too. I might just go for a DAC1 or DAC2, depending on how much money I get..
That's what led me to the Audio Mirror. I was orginally thinking getting the Benchmark DAC1 but then started seeing reviews about it being overly analytical and slightly cold. I was looking for something more analog sounding and that led me to the Bel Canto DAC2 or the Ack! Dac 2. The Bel Canto was nice and small and wouldn't take up much space with my pc setup. The Ack! just seemed like too much trouble with the batteries. I just wanted to have my amp and dac alway on and ready to go.

After looking for used DAC2's on Audiogon, I found the reviews about the Audio Mirror. I sounded like a better DAC and less money and was still a small unit. I have no regrets about my purchase.
post #39 of 142
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by iamdone
After looking for used DAC2's on Audiogon, I found the reviews about the Audio Mirror. I sounded like a better DAC and less money and was still a small unit. I have no regrets about my purchase.
You have to admit, there's something slightly disconcerting about seeing a nearly identical unit for only $130 though. It's a shame the guy's design was ripped off, if that's the case, but still that such a device can be assembled for that much money... if I could get one for around the original price I might do it. But at $1k? Not happening.

I wonder if all these DACs on the DIY site are rip-offs of much more expensive DACs. I'm now leaning toward the 72... sketchy as it will be almost $400 shipped and there are comments from only 2 folks there - both _fantastic_ comments, but still...
post #40 of 142
Thread Starter 
akwok,

Where did you find the second review for the 72? In the description it's a 20 bit DAC, yet in the review the guy mentions its 24 bit.
post #41 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobeau
akwok,

Where did you find the second review for the 72? In the description it's a 20 bit DAC, yet in the review the guy mentions its 24 bit.
Audioasylum, google for "DAC-72 review".

There was a thread about that too, I think.

I'm really tempted about the DAC-72 though.. it might be a better performer than the VDA-1 (same price too). But the DAC-68 just looks BEEFIER.

To be honest, I don't care if he's ripping off designs.. like you said, overpricing a $100-in-parts DAC to $999 is even more dishonest.
post #42 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobeau
You have to admit, there's something slightly disconcerting about seeing a nearly identical unit for only $130 though. It's a shame the guy's design was ripped off, if that's the case, but still that such a device can be assembled for that much money... if I could get one for around the original price I might do it. But at $1k? Not happening.

I wonder if all these DACs on the DIY site are rip-offs of much more expensive DACs. I'm now leaning toward the 72... sketchy as it will be almost $400 shipped and there are comments from only 2 folks there - both _fantastic_ comments, but still...

Just email Vlad using the contact link for the Audio Mirror website and see what he quotes you. I just got mine last week with FET upgrade for $600. It sounds like he's no longer offering the $500 version.

You could always get the stock DAC-aH version at Poth Audio for $175. I haven't seen any direct reviews on the actual sound of the two units. That's also why I went with the Audio Mirror. All the reviews were about that special DAC, so even if it was almost identical to the DAC-ah, just a little difference could change the whole sound. I didn't want to take that chance.
post #43 of 142
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by akwok
I'm really tempted about the DAC-72 though.. it might be a better performer than the VDA-1 (same price too).
Logic would dictate a Chinese built product would outperform $ per $ by a good margin. But of course it comes down to what's a known entity (VDA-1) and what is not (DAC-72)... and to that end, I nominate you, akwok, as the first Head-fi member to purchase the DAC-72 to verify that it is indeed a superior unit

Like anyone would care if I came out "yeah, this $300 DAC slaughters my $100 soundcard".

Quote:
To be honest, I don't care if he's ripping off designs.. like you said, overpricing a $100-in-parts DAC to $999 is even more dishonest.
Who's to say some of the different components are rather costly, plus as an engineer myself I can empathize with the R&D overhead, which is surely a good deal of cost due to low volume to recoup...
post #44 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobeau
Who's to say some of the different components are rather costly, plus as an engineer myself I can empathize with the R&D overhead, which is surely a good deal of cost due to low volume to recoup...
The other thing, is this DAC has actually been selling for $500-$600, not $1000.
He claims he's bringing the production to the U.S. and trying to stop it from being made in China.

Anyway I think I got a great DAC for $600. That's $200 cheaper than I was willing to buy a used Bel Canto Dac 2 for and it's supposed to sound better. Maybe I could have got the almost same DAC for a fraction of the price but I'd always wonder if the Audio Mirror sounded better.
post #45 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by iamdone
The other thing, is this DAC has actually been selling for $500-$600, not $1000.
He claims he's bringing the production to the U.S. and trying to stop it from being made in China.

Anyway I think I got a great DAC for $600. That's $200 cheaper than I was willing to buy a used Bel Canto Dac 2 for and it's supposed to sound better. Maybe I could have got the almost same DAC for a fraction of the price but I'd always wonder if the Audio Mirror sounded better.
I thought all of vlads stuff was made in china.He is blowing smoke if he thinks he will have it made here.NOS multi stacked dacs have been out for a very long time.

I remember years ago something about the distortion that stacking dacs create.Theory only i quess

When i owned the audio mirror dac i thought it was very good.But it seems to have more of an upfront presentation instead of hanging back behind my system.
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