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Beresford 7510 MK 6 Mini Review/comparison

post #1 of 324
Thread Starter 
Edit: Please see Bottom area of this post for Modded impressions.

Ok I have listened for long enough to give a basic opinion on this unit as a stand-alone dac. I have yet to try the headphone out as I am using a burned in MisterX mini3.

Source is X-Fi Fatality, Audio Creation Mode, Bit matched, 48KHZ clock, WMA lossless files.

Unmodded review done with neutralish Beyer 880s with Cardas recable.

Modded review done with SR-Lambdas and SRD-7

Compared to the Zhalou 2.5C and MD-10 Dacs which I have had the 7510 is more detailed and extends more in the highs than either. The bass of the 7510 is the best of the three now that it has burned in a bit. Defined and with decent impact. Less slam than the Zhalou but very good for this price range. I like the Zhalous mids a bit better b/c I prefer warmer but the 7510 has clearly defined mids no doubt.

Soundstage as of now would appear to be the same as the Zhalou or slightly less. It does seem to be as airy as the Zhalou and the 7510 has a faster attack I feel.The 7510 has a larger soundstage than the MD-10.

Separation is best on the 7510 as it has the best detail. You can clearly define instruments and voices. There is more congestion with the other two Dacs.

Overall, it is the most neutral of these three dacs. The MD-10 was designed to have a warmish, vinyl tone and the Zhalou is warmer too. Not to say the 7510 is cold really but more in the clear window on a nice spring day kind of feel.

The closest thing that I have heard to the 7510 is probably the PS Audio GCHA. Slightly less clear and not as fast. The 7510 also has a spot more grain to it than the GHCA but it is very similar to me.

So as an initial, quicky review I would say IMO that this DAC is to be considered the most neutral and balanced of the three Dacs I have heard under the $300 range. The Zhalou obviously has more room for modding with it's Ori or Zap output stage options but the MD-10 can't really compete here unless you want more warmth and tighter soundstage.

After burn in I am now considering keeping this dac as it has improved in the bass and soundstage.If you want a dac that doesn't need mods to be good this is a great deal.

Just my opinion of course. I would say though that the 7510 offers a quality sound with great input/output options for the price.

Modded Impressions

Wow! Nice improvements. Fierce did the modifications to the highs and lows leaving the midrange alone. There is a significant jump in detail, extension and clarity. I highly recommend this mod. For the $$ there really is not a dac out there to compete with this one. The stock Zhalou 2.5C is nice and has more bass slam but lacks the neutrality, clarity, speed and balance the 7510 has. Sound stage appears to be around the middle of the room. Slightly forward but in a good position for headphones. Is it a giant-killer? No. It is a very good deal and has a sound which most will like. I can hear how some would compare it favorably to higher end dacs. It certainly is better in most ways than my old PS Audio Superlink II dac for instance. Bassheads might want to look elsewhere unless they have bass heavy cans. Those seeking balance and speed I can say you will need to at least try this dac modded.

For around $225 new this gets my budget best buy award for dac/pre-amp/headphone amp swiss-army knife for headfiers.

Highly Recommended.
post #2 of 324
Thanks for your thoughts, spliff.
post #3 of 324
Nice review, very helpful comparisons too - and exactly what my wallet didn't want to hear...
post #4 of 324
Thread Starter 
Thanks. Mines FS this weekend or going back Monday so I can get $$ for another dac to try. Going to move up into the $400-500 range now.
post #5 of 324
spacemanspiff, what were your findings about the built-in headamp of the Beresford? Did you hear substantial improvements after connecting a good external headamp to it?
post #6 of 324
Thread Starter 
I haven't listened to it yet. I will today. I have it burning in since last night actually.
post #7 of 324
Nice little review S/Spliff , very useful and much appreciated...
post #8 of 324
Thread Starter 
updated. see bold sentences for new info.
post #9 of 324
Quote:
Originally Posted by Goh View Post
spacemanspiff, what were your findings about the built-in headamp of the Beresford? Did you hear substantial improvements after connecting a good external headamp to it?
The difference between the headamp of my Beresford and my Darkvoice 336 was only small at first.
Now after proper burn-in and with better tubes, the Darkvoice has taken a nice distance on all fronts.
This doesn't mean the built-in headamp is no good. It's decent especially considering how cheap it is.
My strategy was buying this DAC first and use the built-in headamp until I would get a nice headamp. It will give you nice things like the impressive instrument separation anyway so you got something to marvel at for a while.
post #10 of 324
Quote:
Originally Posted by spacemanspliff View Post
After burn in I am now considering keeping this dac as it has improved in the bass and soundstage.If you want a dac that doesn't need mods to be good this is a great deal.
So lets recapitulate - you are liking it more, even considering to keep it and you are lowering the price and using bold words. I'm confused
post #11 of 324
Thread Starter 
lol no I paid $200 shipped so I lowered the price to equal that. I used bold to notate the changes burn in brought.
post #12 of 324
Thread Starter 
I really am thinking of keeping it now b/c with some cheap modding it may become a really good dac and still be cheap. I do not think it will be as good as a Ori Zhalou but it may cost $200 or more less and be pretty nice.
post #13 of 324
In that case I guess I should have a word with Stanley
post #14 of 324
Thread Starter 
The Headphone amp is ok. It is not as good as my mini 3 but if you need a decent backup it will do fine. It is better than straight out of my X-Fi in most respects.
post #15 of 324
btw which DAC chip was in your zhaolu?
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