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REVIEW: Audio-GD Phoenix Balanced Solid-State Headphone Amplifier - Page 9

post #121 of 156
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skylab View Post
Right - just trying to keep things in perspective
BTW, you may find some of my comments in the B&W headphone thread ver interesting, sue to your love of B&W. If any of my experience or insight can ever be of any help in this regard, do not hesitate to contact me.
post #122 of 156
@ Skylab, in your review you finished off by saying that as a SE amp it falls short in comparison to the balanced config. How good is it using SE? Does it compare with the Concerto? Do you prefer the Concerto or the Pheonix for your D7000's?
post #123 of 156
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Jester View Post
@ Skylab, in your review you finished off by saying that as a SE amp it falls short in comparison to the balanced config. How good is it using SE? Does it compare with the Concerto? Do you prefer the Concerto or the Pheonix for your D7000's?
He posted today in the T1 thread saying that the Concerto was better SE. So if you don't need balanced may as well save money.
post #124 of 156
Quote:
Originally Posted by Necrolic View Post
He posted today in the T1 thread saying that the Concerto was better SE. So if you don't need balanced may as well save money.
Cheers! I think I heard my wallet sigh with relief. Damn wallet...
post #125 of 156
Skylab,

In your review, you connected a balanced DAC to a balanced pre-amp/amp. Then AB'd both single-ended and balanced headphones. Thanks again for the great review!!

I have a small request....

I was wondering if you could change the test variable from single-ended headphones vs balanced headphones TO single-ended DAC vs balanced DAC

Here is my dilema......

I currently have an single-ended (unbalanced) DAC which I plan on feeding to the Phoenix. From the Phoenix I would be running Balanced to my headphones.

If you connect your Music Hall 25.2 single-ended (unbalanced) to your Phoenix, then balanced out to your DT880s. Can you describe how the sound quality is affected?

(I know this isnt a true AB test because your Music Hall runs through the Tube circuit when connected single-ended, but I would still appreciate your thoughts)

I basically want to know if upgrading my DAC is completely neccessary?
post #126 of 156
I'm guessing you want to connect dac19dsp to a phoenix? It's what I'm doing and can't help but feel the phoenix is in another league with how effortlessly it shows the sound character of my dac19mk3 with pmd100/df1704 without imparting much of anything by itself. A roc would probably be more sensible to pair with the dac19mk3 to gain the benefits of balancing. Or try to sell your new dac19dsp locally with minimal loss (or at worst try to trade it in to audio-gd lol) and get the roc and the dac coming out meant to pair with it, since I see in another thread you are interested. I do wonder though, how much audio-gd can stick in a $1000 dac in a box just slightly bigger than your dac19mk4 when that dac is already packed full.
post #127 of 156
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Jester View Post
@ Skylab, in your review you finished off by saying that as a SE amp it falls short in comparison to the balanced config. How good is it using SE? Does it compare with the Concerto? Do you prefer the Concerto or the Pheonix for your D7000's?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Necrolic View Post
He posted today in the T1 thread saying that the Concerto was better SE. So if you don't need balanced may as well save money.
Right - IMO, the Concerto is better single ended. If you don't plan balanced headphones now or in the near future, don't need multiple inputs, preamp outputs, or a remote, then the Concerto is the better choice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sk3383 View Post
I was wondering if you could change the test variable from single-ended headphones vs balanced headphones TO single-ended DAC vs balanced DAC

Here is my dilema......

I currently have an single-ended (unbalanced) DAC which I plan on feeding to the Phoenix. From the Phoenix I would be running Balanced to my headphones.

If you connect your Music Hall 25.2 single-ended (unbalanced) to your Phoenix, then balanced out to your DT880s. Can you describe how the sound quality is affected?

(I know this isnt a true AB test because your Music Hall runs through the Tube circuit when connected single-ended, but I would still appreciate your thoughts)
Unfortunately, as you understand, this isn't a worthwhile test for the Phoenix. The Music Hall DAC's SE outputs being tubed will sound different enough from the balanced outputs that I will not be able to draw any conclusions.

I will say that the Phoenix sounds great when driven from the RSA Nighthawk phono preamp via the SE inputs, so it CAN sound very good from the SE inputs (which get phase-split and run through the amp balanced).
post #128 of 156
Thanks Skylab, looks like i need to speak with the good Dr Meier.
post #129 of 156
Quote:
Originally Posted by haloxt View Post
I'm guessing you want to connect dac19dsp to a phoenix? It's what I'm doing and can't help but feel the phoenix is in another league with how effortlessly it shows the sound character of my dac19mk3 with pmd100/df1704 without imparting much of anything by itself. A roc would probably be more sensible to pair with the dac19mk3 to gain the benefits of balancing. Or try to sell your new dac19dsp locally with minimal loss (or at worst try to trade it in to audio-gd lol) and get the roc and the dac coming out meant to pair with it, since I see in another thread you are interested. I do wonder though, how much audio-gd can stick in a $1000 dac in a box just slightly bigger than your dac19mk4 when that dac is already packed full.
My intention was to always connect the DAC19DSP to the ROC or C-39. I only quoted connecting my DAC19DSP to the Phoenix for the sake of keeping the test variables the same. I did not want to confuse the situation by introducing a different product.

Both the ROC & C-39 are fully balanced much like the Phoenix. I do not need the headphone amplifier section, as I am using this setup mainly for my stereo setup.

I could not afford the fully balanced Reference One DAC @ $1500 + ... and I had no idea that there was a new balanced DAC coming out around the $1000 mark or else I would have waited.

What I am trying to figure out is, how much of a difference will I notice between the following two setups:

A) DAC-19DSP > ACSS Cable (CAST) > C-39/ROC > Balanced XLR Cables > KRK Rokit 8
B) Audio-gd Balanced DAC > Balanced XLR > C-39/ROC > Balanced XLR Cables > KRK Rokit 8

Now I understand the new Audio-gd $1000 balanced DAC isnt even out yet and nobody has heard it yet...but lets just pretend that it is a cross between a DAC-19DSP & the Reference One.

Should I sell my DAC-19DSP? or will the difference not be as drastic as I think it is?
post #130 of 156
You haven't tried the dac19 yet right? I recommend you hold onto the dac19dsp to see if you even like what the dac19 does, and see if it is sufficient or not.
post #131 of 156
Quote:
Originally Posted by sk3383 View Post
My intention was to always connect the DAC19DSP to the ROC or C-39. I only quoted connecting my DAC19DSP to the Phoenix for the sake of keeping the test variables the same. I did not want to confuse the situation by introducing a different product.

Both the ROC & C-39 are fully balanced much like the Phoenix. I do not need the headphone amplifier section, as I am using this setup mainly for my stereo setup.

I could not afford the fully balanced Reference One DAC @ $1500 + ... and I had no idea that there was a new balanced DAC coming out around the $1000 mark or else I would have waited.

What I am trying to figure out is, how much of a difference will I notice between the following two setups:

A) DAC-19DSP > ACSS Cable (CAST) > C-39/ROC > Balanced XLR Cables > KRK Rokit 8
B) Audio-gd Balanced DAC > Balanced XLR > C-39/ROC > Balanced XLR Cables > KRK Rokit 8

Now I understand the new Audio-gd $1000 balanced DAC isnt even out yet and nobody has heard it yet...but lets just pretend that it is a cross between a DAC-19DSP & the Reference One.

Should I sell my DAC-19DSP? or will the difference not be as drastic as I think it is?
There is likely to be a large performance difference. If the sound isn't being converted to balanced until it hits the amp and is fully processed in SE mode then you aren't getting many of the benefits of balanced mode.
post #132 of 156
Necrolic, I don't think we should be speculating on an unreleased dac like that, and even if there is a large difference it would likely be overkill for $500 powered speakers.
post #133 of 156
Quote:
Originally Posted by haloxt View Post
Necrolic, I don't think we should be speculating on an unreleased dac like that, and even if there is a large difference it would likely be overkill for $500 powered speakers.
My bad, I didn't realize he said he wasn't going to be using it for headphones.

Why not just use a true balanced DAC directly to the speakers then? The amp won't do anything but act as a volume control for the speakers, and if that's all you need it for that's a huge waste of $700. If you need a volume control just get the Meier Audio StageDAC instead of the DAC19.
post #134 of 156
I just need a pre-amp.

I just wanted to hear some comments about sending a Single Ended signal into a balanced pre-amp.

I got the answer I expected. I may have purchased the wrong DAC.

But I will reserve judgement until I actually get this thing tmrw and get it up and running.

I shouldnt have posted in this thread, as my questions do not have much to do with the Phoenix. I apologize guys.
post #135 of 156
I doubt the dac19dsp is going to disappoint you. Stop worrying until you've actually heard the dac hehe.
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