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Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1 (DAC/Amp) - Condensed FAQ and Info Thread - Page 47

post #691 of 727

Hi all,

 

I only just got the D1+ from another head-fier and am curious about some of the mods. I've already adjusted the volume control for the pre out (I am also using this with the Magni). Now I'm interested in trying out the OPA627 opamps. As I was looking into this mod, I came across some info on a Class A biasing mod that people have been doing on the Matrix M-Stage. This is not my area of expertise at all, so forgive me if the answer is as obvious as my nose: would the class A mod would work on the D1+ too? It is possible to buy the OPA627s with the biasing mod already done, btw.

post #692 of 727

Anyone interested in buying a Maverick Audio TubeMagic A1 amp, D1 or D1Plus Dac/Amp, or the D2 DAC....price considerations. Maverick Audio has always offered upgraded OPA627 OpAmps and NOS GE 5670W tubes for their line, but they tended to be a bit expensive compared to mods you could do on your own. It looks like they've taken notice, and started offering package pricing with the mods on their products across the board.

 

The link is http://mav-audio.com/store/

 

Additionally they are offering an additional $15 off any product using the check out code "15OFF". I just picked up a D2 DAC with all upgrades and shipping for under $300, after the $15 off. A bit less than it would have been a few months ago.

post #693 of 727

So I bought a D1 Plus that comes with 2 OPA 627's 1 in the left most socket and 1 in the right most socket, as well as a GE5670w in the tube, this unit gets most of its use outputting to my KRK ROKIT 5's and I have a few questions I hope someone can help me with?

I find the unit a bit to laid back and warm, I notice vocals seem "In the back" (I will often get frustrated when watching movies or more vocal works and the vocals just sound so removed)  I guess it just seems too relaxed and bloomy, are there better opamps I could be using to sound more neutral and detailed and snappy? my KRK's are already warmly tilted

Which sockets affect which parts of the unit? there are 3 opamp sockets, is the left the outputs on the back? the middle the Dac? and the right the headphone port?

Im not currently using the tube out because like I said my monitors already sound too warm and bloomy, I'm just using the normal RCA Out, could replacing the tube with another and then using the tube out help me accomplish what I am looking for?

Thank you!

post #694 of 727

Sorry for being completely new to the forums but here it goes. I have a pair of Beyer DT 770 pro (80 ohm), Sennheiser HD 280, Onkyo TX-8555 receiver, pair of Cerwin Vega LS-12, and a pair of EPI-100 as well as an audioengine D1 DAV and Fiio E11. I just acquired the D1 and was further looking into DAC's when I stumbled on the Maveric tubemagic D1. I am really interested in the possibility of listening to a tube pre-amp and being able to switch around the tubes. As you can tell from my set up, Im relatively new and money does make a difference for me. My question is, should I stick with the audioengine I already have, switch to a tubemagic D1 or look into the Schiit Modi which is cheap and has gotten rave reviews. If I went with the tubemagic, how hard is it to find good tubes? Also, is having the tube amp worth it, I have heard many great things, and I love the organic nature of the sound (how it changes from tube to tube)? Is there a better tube DAC/pre amp than the tubemagic for around the same price? Im sorry for a convoluted post but I am trying to learn the ropes here. 

 

edit: My main listening is done with the DT 770 or the speakers. 

post #695 of 727

Tunnelvision,

 

I too am new to tubes, it's been about 4 months for me. I had a similar choice as you, I have a headphone system and a stereo system. I originally thought the D1 would be the best of both worlds, and purchased it to feed a Bob Latino tube amp and the built-in headphone amp for Sennheiser HD558 and Grado SR80i headphones.

 

Without boring you to death with the details, I ultimately was not happy with the entire system......it just felt "off", and I could not always put my finger on why. I tried a bunch of solutions, but ultimately help actually came from Ryan in tech support at Maverick. I will paste his response to me for my problem.

 

~~If that's the case, D2 is clearly the best DAC for you for the sake of the sound quality. Honestly, I am not a "believer" of upsampling, D2 is not an upsampling DAC, it sounds better than the D1 Plus which is an upsampling DAC. You will feel the music is more 3-dimensional and sound stage is wider if you compare the D2 to the D1 Plus. Also, you don't really need headphone amplifier, volume control and analog inputs on the D1 plus, as you are pairing the DAC with tube amplifier. By having less "features" will improve the sound quality as well.~~

 

So what I took from Maverick's response (and honesty) is that: The D1 has compromises in it because it is designed as a "Swiss army knife" product, and that it does many things well.....but nothing very well. To me that made sense, the D1 is designed as a DAC, up sampler, tube buffer, pre-amp, and headphone amp all in one unit....some compromises were made for the sake of price and size, and it shows up in the sound.

 

The D2 on the other hand is designed as a "no sacrifice for the money" DAC only unit. If it does not improve the sound and function of the D2, it is not in the unit. No pre-amp, no up sampler, no headphone amp....just superior components.

 

In the end Maverick swapped out my D1 for a D2 DAC and I matched it to a Schiit Magni headphone amp, and all I have to say is "holy *****". All of the previous problems were gone; detail, punch, clarity, openness, instrument placement, black background....all present. I really would recommend that you reach out to Maverick tech support, just to get their feedback. I've found them very helpful. Best of luck and I hope my experience can be helpful.

post #696 of 727

That has me quite interesting. I have a D1 with swapped out tubes and swappd out DAC.

I have been considering a D2 and just pop the lid off and do what I did with the D1 to the D2. I dno't use the HP output, nor the line in or out anymore unless I take it on the go with me.

It already sounds spectacular with the way I have it set up so I am curious if it will be even better.

I have a SUN HDAM and WE 396A tube.

post #697 of 727

Shroker,

 

I had that too, in my zeal I had purchased some extra OpAmp packages (OP637, Burson, and Linear Technologies) and NOS 5670s (Raytheon, Sylvania, and Tesla tubes....and a more expensive "gold" pin NOS tube as well) before I even had the damn thing broken in. Finding a solution with the D2 meant I could keep all of that for tube/OpAmp rolling later.

 

I would love to offer up a review at some point soon, but I have way too many variables right now, with rectifier and driver tubes in the Bob Latino ST-120 tube amp, cables, and the D2 options OpAmp and tubes. At some point when things calm down I'll do a D2 piece and post here.

post #698 of 727

Diphaloraptor,

 

For more of my experience, you can see my earlier post to tunnelvision. I'm not sure a D1 would be any more beneficial to you than what you already have in place. The Audioengine is a very good "all in one" unit, but suffers from the same drawbacks that a D1 does....it tries to do everything in a small package at a small price. My experience is that is just not possible, and I made the decision to go with a separate DAC and headphone amp.

 

The Schiit Modi is a very good DAC for the money, but it is limited to USB input only and only has 1 audio output.... and is a solid state DAC, no tubes to roll. The Schiit Bitfrost is an excellent DAC, and has all of the inputs, but is not a tube DAC and you are limited to rolling OpAmps. There are excellent options from Topping, Audio GD, Odac, and Emotiva as well.....but same there as well.

 

I settled on the Maverick D2 because I could roll OpAmps and tubes, NOS 5670 tubes are easily found on ebay http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_odkw=6570+tube&_osacat=0&_from=R40&_trksid=p2045573.m570.l1311.R1.TR2.TRC1.A0.H0.X5670+tube&_nkw=5670+tube&_sacat=0 and it has all of the inputs I could want, and it has two analog output stages, one pure solid state and one tube

 

I'm driving the headphones with a Schiit Magni headphone amp

 

You mentioned that money is a consideration, but if it weren't then the holy grail might be a Woo Audio WA7 fireflies. Hope this helps some

post #699 of 727

Sorry if I'm interrupting a conversation but can anyone tell me whether you can 'mute' the RCA-out to speakers when a headphone is plugged into the front of the D1 Plus? I want to run my powered speakers via something like the TubeMagic and my headphones as well, but I don't want to have to pull the RCA cables out whenever I want to mute the sound and listen through headphones. Thoughts?

post #700 of 727

AG,

 

No interruption, but I'll be no help here as I've swapped out the D1

post #701 of 727

VTHokie83

 

Thank you for the pointers, that definitely helps. I will scrap the D1 and add the D2 to my consideration, any chance you are still selling your D2 and would like to make a deal for a newbie ;) otherwise, has anyone had any experience or knowledge regarding the Indeed G3, Little Dot Mk2 or 3, Muse TU-20 or DarkVoice 336 SE? All of those have pretty favorable reviews, although the downside to the little dok and darkvoice is that they are running more than a single tube, but its not a deal breaker.   

post #702 of 727

Diphaloraptor, no on the D2, it is staying in the system as my main DAC.....I love it

 

You originally stated that you were on a budget, and some of the components you listed are very good, but not necessarily cheap. Other components are cheap, but may not be that good.

 

The Indeed/Little Bear/Qinpu/Bravo/Aune/Miridiy is an entry level kit headphone amp with all Chinese components and varied results at best, I doubt that it would stay as your "go to' amp for long. I borrowed one from a fellow audiophile and was not impressed; hollow, too laid back, not involving, no soundstage....your mileage may vary.

 

The DarkVoice 336SE is well thought of, though I have not had a chance to audition one. I tested a 3322 model and loved it, just wasn't ready to spend the money on it at the time

 

If you want to try some high end Chinese amps then Yaqin has several headphone amps, and some well thought of. Yaqins can be found on eBay or Amazon or several specialized Chinese exporters. A good choice may be some of the Meixing MingDa headphone amps, though they are hard to find recently since they've raised prices recently and have been dropped by many resellers....best bet here would be eBay. Also Shenzhen Audio has Yaqin, Little Dot, and DarkVoice amps and is a good place to research different Chinese amps. Again here they are no longer selling the MingDa, which is a shame. Shenzhen is nice because they carry the entire line of each of the Chinese amps, and they are all in stock. I personally may try one of Yaqin headphone amps once I get my stereo amplifier tubes, interconnects, and speaker cables dialed in.

 

The Little Dot does have some good reviews, and some mixed reviews, and has had some quality and customer service issues along the way. The customer service issue does not seem to be limited to Little Dot, rather may be across the board with Chinese based products.......as long as you go into it informed of that. May be a very fun choice for a first tube amp, and you can have fun tube rolling while getting good sound without breaking the bank.

 

Here is a link to a very nice list of tube headphone amps, but be prepared most are way out of your suggested price range. http://www.head-fi.org/t/402585/review-summary-a-ranking-of-32-tube-and-tube-hybrid-headphone-amps

 

Some others to consider that are hybrid or tube: $550 Woo Audio WA6 (expensive but may be your last headphone amp), $200 Maverick Audio A1, $120 Schiit Vali or $350 Schiit Valhalla

post #703 of 727

VTHokie83 its a shame you dont want to separate from your D2 but its completely understandable. Also, thanks for all of the information, I have decided against Indeed and similar because of the many issues and too much DYI for my knowledge. 

 

Otherwise I have heard really good things about Schiit products and they are a strong consideration (biggest problem, i really want the styling with exposed bulbs, I know its a dumb request because sound quality > looks but i would like both). 

 

I am currently looking at the little dot mk1+, and yeah i was aware that there have been some issues (not too many) but then again they are a Chinese manufacturer and most reviews are quite favorable. I also like that it is quite cheap and has many tube rolling options, which is something im quite interested in. 

 

If I could get a DV336 for cheap, I would def go with that. But thanks for all the help, I feel much better about my choices. 

post #704 of 727

Does the "normal" analog out represent the analog signal out of the DAC but not amped?

 

I'm trying to figure if the D1 can be used as a dedicated dac, connected to a different headphones amp.

 

Thanks!


Edited by intlsubband - 4/15/14 at 12:57am
post #705 of 727

The normal analog out is striaght from the DAC and not through the tube.
The pre-amp goes DAC-> Tube -> out.

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Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1 (DAC/Amp) - Condensed FAQ and Info Thread