Pardon one final interruption, folks......
As much as I feud with a certain person, I can honestly say he has learned something from his encounters with me. So, I do not feel my time was a total waste.
Look, guys.........it is real simple: You can stick an attenuator on your SPDIF doo-hickey, and see if it works. If it does, fine. Might be the best $12 you have spent.
If you can't hear a difference, well, it might mean you can not hear the difference. I'm sure someone will be willing to take it off of your hands.
Most of you will spend more money, on dubious stuff, that has no basis in physics, and won't help you get better sound.
Now, one thing he asked, and felt he did not get a truthful answer, had to do with a direct connection. I did answer it, but in lieu of actually having one of these units, I can not give a 100% certain answer.
Here is the problem:
If you stick a short cable, and by short, I mean......oh, say.............9" long, in between your doo-hickey, and your DAC. This would be a very bad idea.
Why, you ask?
There are going to be reflections. All transmission lines have reflections. Because of the way the clock is built into the SPDIF stream, its recovery is affected by reflections.
So, how does the cable length, enter into it? Well, explaining it, without visual aids, might be tricky. But, try to hang in there with me.
Rise time is the amount of time the waveform takes to go from 20% to 80%. If the reflection arrives during that 20% to 80% window, it is going to skew the waveform. So, what happens with a very short cable, is that reflection is going to land right dab smack somewhere in that part of the waveform, and the rise time will actually increase! As you lengthen the cable, that reflection arrives later and later, in the waveform, until it starts arriving after the waveform reaches its maximum level.
So, as you lengthen the cable, the rise time decreases. Which is good. As you further increase it, the rise time starts to increase, as pulse dispersion slows down the HF components of the waveform. (Cable attenuation goes up, as frequency increases.)
Now, how long, or how short can the cable be?
Well, without knowing the rise time of the circuit, you can not know. But, let's say it is 5 nSec or so. In which case, it might need to be 4-5' or so.
But, all of this is dependent on the rise time, the electrical length of the circuit up to the connector, how big the reflection from the far end is, etc., etc., and more etc.
(If you have really poor impedance control, have a so-so output stage, that is further crippled, to lower EMI, which is what almost of you have, even if you do not realize it, what works best is a long cable, that has low BW. This is what some of you call "Jocko's cable". I should know: I designed it in '92, for just those situations.)
But, if you can stick a 10 (or 20 dB!) pad in between the two doo-hickeys.............hey, it might work really good. Really.
Only costs $12 to find out. In lieu of having one in my hand, trying it is the best advice I can offer. If I had one, I could measure it and know for sure.
Now, coming full circle to the top of this post.........
For those of you with as depraved a sense of humor as I have, "our buddy" JK is having an exchange over on DIYAudio with someone who portrays himself as someone who has designed equipment, up to 2.4 GHz.
If he worked for me, and I read what he has posted, he would be fired on the spot. No questions asked. Folks, as much as JK gets under my skin, he is a lot smarter than this other guy. I do not see any way someone who claims to have his experience, could write such nonsense.
Only goes to prove, what I say, all the time...........
Don't automatically believe everything you read on the 'Net. A lot of it is just flat out wrong. Don't believe what I write!!!!!!!!!! I want you to do some work on your own, to find out if I am right. Or just BS'ing you, for my private amusement. (No, that is my buddy Phred, who does that. Not me.) Hate me if you like, just learn something from our exchange. (Actually, Phred thinks you should learn from his abuse, but he won't care if you don't. It's the German genes!)
Just don't ask someone on some other forum if I am right or not! 98% of them are worse off than you are. Trust me.....................