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Paradisea+ just arrived

post #1 of 103
Thread Starter 
So, got home today and found my Paradisea had arrived. Sweet!

Unpacked it, and noticed right off that it was quite a bit heaiver than my Constantine+ Dac. It's also slightly wider. It's nice to see they are now using more fancy feet on this Dac, which goes with all of the other gold colored hardware on it.

So, I hook it up and have been using it for a few hours now, and didn't notice any huge differences between this and my paradisea, that is until one of my older songs came on: Judas Priest - "Never satisfied". I never remember hearing such distance in his voice, it's as if he is really focused in space a ways in front of me! This was very nice, and I look forward to seeing what else this DAC can do. Plus, I expect to try out some different tubes in it once they arrive.

Actually, as I write this, I have been listening to a few more Judas priest songs off the album, and it's great! Very impressed. All this with the stock tube which isn't renowned as being the best sounding.

Now some pics:





I'll make sure to update this as I become more familiar with this DAC.
post #2 of 103
Tower7.... I'd be specially interested in a comparison to the Constantine !!!
post #3 of 103
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blueiz View Post
Tower7.... I'd be specially interested in a comparison to the Constantine !!!
Sure thing! I'll keep everyone posted as to the differences I find.
post #4 of 103
I'm afraid the C-Media USB-to-spdif chip in MHDT USB DAC's will likely make the USB input sound worse than the spdif input, but do compare both and let us know...
post #5 of 103
Congrats! I think the MHdt DACs have the coolest looking casings. I used to have the standard Constantine and it served me well. It looks like he's using toroidals in them now. That's sweet. I wonder if he's changed that in the rest of the line, too.

Also you might try using a cd transport or a soundcard/external USB that has a coaxial output. I know it's been somewhat controversial comparing TOSlink and coax, particularly with computer sources. But in my experience, I've consistently found that coax sounds better than TOSlink.

I forgot, does it use the 2C51/396A/5670 tube? If so, there are several nice NOS options you can go there without breaking the bank.
post #6 of 103
i did have a look at the MHDT DACs while on my search, very very nice looking products and the tube output looks very interesting. maybe a future purchase of mine so will be interesting to hear your thoughts on it. i currently own a lite dac-ah caa mod.

the ebay description said he chose the c-media chip over the burr brown one because he said it was better, this isn't true?
post #7 of 103
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Borat View Post
Congrats! I think the MHdt DACs have the coolest looking casings. I used to have the standard Constantine and it served me well. It looks like he's using toroidals in them now. That's sweet. I wonder if he's changed that in the rest of the line, too.

Also you might try using a cd transport or a soundcard/external USB that has a coaxial output. I know it's been somewhat controversial comparing TOSlink and coax, particularly with computer sources. But in my experience, I've consistently found that coax sounds better than TOSlink.

I forgot, does it use the 2C51/396A/5670 tube? If so, there are several nice NOS options you can go there without breaking the bank.
Thanks for the nice compliments Borat. I actually do use coax from my main soundcard at school, but im off on break for a week and have to use optical from my laptop.

And yes, it does use those tubes. Right now it's a stock GE 5670W.

Yup, new transformer, new feet, and they changed around some of their caps to I *think* blackgate, a new opamp LM4562 (with socket), among other things.


Jon L, I never intended to use USB with this, but if I can find a cable i'll give it a try just to see.

Mrjabba, his e-bay description may not yet be up to date to reflect the specs of the new Paradisea (I know when I bought mine they were in the process of editing their e-bay listing).
post #8 of 103
Congrats on the new dac. I have the regular (non+) version and its best quality is definitely the midrange. Vocals just come alive in a very organic way, which is better than I have ever heard. I am glad that he switched opamps to the lm4562. I feel that the opa2604 is probably the bottleneck for the previous version. I am waiting for opa2827 to replace 2604 in mine. (Unfortunately choices are limited for opamps with > +-17V swing. Of the tubes that I've heard the 396a is the best (but most expensive). The Tung-Sol 5670 or 2c51 are the next best of the ones I've tried (Raytheon, GE JAN, RCA, CBS, Westinghouse). Actually, the differences between brands aren't huge, but the square getter tubes (which are older)seem to be superior to the round getter tubes. The tube operates at a very low voltage, so if you invest in a 396a, it should last a long time.

edit: I think new caps are nichicon kz, not blackgates, but obviously if you can read the label you know more than I do.
post #9 of 103
I have a Constantine USB, and would also be interested in how it compares with the Paradisea+.
post #10 of 103
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by izquierdaste View Post
edit: I think new caps are nichicon kz, not blackgates, but obviously if you can read the label you know more than I do.
Yup, just opened the case and they are nichicon capacitors. Look to be the KG series.
post #11 of 103
Congrats Towert7. Glad you like the sound of your new DAC and I too am looking forward to hearing more. That tube looks killer through the smoked case. Altogether a really nice looking piece of kit.
post #12 of 103
Towert7, that is one heck of a nice looking DAC. I see that it can accept coaxial, optical, and usb. The question I have what happens if you have all three connected? I mean how do you choose which of hte inputs to listen to. Thanks.
post #13 of 103
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrarroyo View Post
Towert7, that is one heck of a nice looking DAC. I see that it can accept coaxial, optical, and usb. The question I have what happens if you have all three connected? I mean how do you choose which of hte inputs to listen to. Thanks.
According to what I have been told by MHdt labs, the switch on the back chooses between Optical and Coax. However, if the DAC detects the +5v signal of the USB, it runs off the USB signal until you either disconnect the cable or shut it off from the computer where it defaults to whatever is selected by the switch. They are also going to make a Paradisea V2 without USB, and that will have two switches I belive, one for Toslink optical / SPDIF, and the other for Coax / BNC (both SPDIF).


As a quick update, I have been listening to various songs, and with some of them I can tell the level of detail is improved. It's much eaiser to hear room accoustics and little subtleties. In some of my classical music I heard things that I had never heard, such as the little noises from the musicians when turning pages, etc. There was also one song with a male singer who I never remember such detail in his voice.

I have to agree with izquierdaste in that the mids on this DAC are amazing. It brings the Constainte to a new level. All this with the stock tube don't forget.

Great thing is, just like the constantine this DAC is so very smooth, I get no fatigue. Man I love these NOS dac's.
post #14 of 103
Wow. I was just going to run to the forum and let everyone know that the Paradisea "Plus" now supports USB and I find someone already has one in there home. That was fast!

I stumbled upon their new ad on EBAY this afternoon and ordered one. I am in the process of chasing after a new DAC. I have been enjoying my Scott Nixon DACKit for about a year. I run it off of an SLA battery with some BlackGates on the outputs.

Lately I got the itch. Now I am trying out DACs. My first step was to buy a used Bel Canto DAC2. This was very informative because in minutes I discovered that I am a NOS guy. The DAC2 is better than my SN in many ways. Detail, bass, speed are better but it has a sort of artificial quality that I do not like. To me it lacks soul. I do not find myself forgetting about the equipment as I do with the SN. I am assuming that this is the NOS thing based upon reading and reviews. So now I have a DAC2 for sale and I learned something. My list is now very short... NOS DACs which sound better than the SN and by a wide margin.

I will try out the Paradisea and then might even try a TwinDac+ or an Altmann Attraction. Anyone got one to sell? or a testimony to offer?

Is there a cure for this?

Best,

Paul
post #15 of 103
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mourip View Post
Wow. I was just going to run to the forum and let everyone know that the Paradisea "Plus" now supports USB and I find someone already has one in there home. That was fast!

I stumbled upon their new ad on EBAY this afternoon and ordered one. I am in the process of chasing after a new DAC. I have been enjoying my Scott Nixon DACKit for about a year. I run it off of an SLA battery with some BlackGate on the outputs.

Lately I got the itch. Now I am trying out DACs. My first step was to buy a used Bel Canto DAC2. This was very informative because in minutes I discovered that I am a NOS guy. The DAC2 is better than my SN in many ways. Detail, bass, speed are better but it has a sort of artificial quality that I do not like. To me it lacks soul. I do not find myself forgetting about the equipment as I do with the SN. I am assuming that this is the NOS thing based upon reading and reviews. So now I have a DAC2 for sale and I learned something. My list is now very short... NOS DACs which are better than the SN by a wide margin.

I will try out the Paradisea and then might even try a TwinDac+ or an Altmann Attraction.

Is there a cure for this?

Best,

Paul
Welcome to the club Paul. Looks like you have good equipment to test DAC's with, so it'll be interesting to see how you find the DAC's compare. I have to agree with you on the NOS vs OS dac's part. Granted there are some great ones in both camps, but in general I edge toward the Non over sampling side.

Keep us posted.
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