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Audiophilleo 1 and 2 USB to S/PDIF transport - Page 75

post #1111 of 1146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girls Generation View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew_WOT View Post
 

Yep, most of the times these "differences" are blown out of proportion.

Having said that I could relatively easily spot the difference between HiFace2 and iLink/iUSB combo, but till today still not sure that I will be able to tell iLink and AP2+PP apart in a blind test. They sounded identical on Burson Conductor and Chord DAC64. :confused: 

 

Apollo, does your AP have PP or any inline USB conditioner?

 

Nope, no PP because I personally think $500 for that is bs. I'd rather spend $1500 to upgrade my amp to a GSX2 or something to make much more of a difference =_= But then again, I'd spend $3000 on something more useful in my life like investments/stocks/etc. or two nice Saint Crispin's shoes hehe. But if I were tied to audio, then getting an ASW Genius 400 speaker would make much more sense. This speaker made everything I own and have owned up to now sound pale in comparison.

Plus it wouldn't be fair to the Hiface2 anyways :P

 

LOL. Agree 100%, someone was asking in Conductor thread if OR-5 ($2K with Turboclock) would improve its sound. Speaking of lipstick on the pig. :tongue:

post #1112 of 1146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew_WOT View Post
 

 

LOL. Agree 100%, someone was asking in Conductor thread if OR-5 ($2K with Turboclock) would improve its sound. Speaking of lipstick on the pig. :tongue:

 

What in the mother effin world... Uhhhhhhhh would an excessively loud and ugly sounding muffler make my sh*tty prelude drive more like a GTR? :B

 

I understand spending a couple hundred for that last stretch of sound when you finally have put together your own "grail" rig, but when you're spending 1.5k-2k on something that makes such a small improvement, when you haven't even found your grail rig, is just saying you need to go see a therapist. I don't want to hear that "to each their own" bs, cuz NO ONE should be doing that unless they're Kim Jong Un or Putin. Plus, no one should be buying high end converters retail. AP1 retails $1k but it drops to $500 as soon as you try to sell it -_-...

post #1113 of 1146

GirlsG, to each his own, you prefer shoes, someone else prefers AP+PP :biggrin:

actually for myself i pick all-tailor made shoes or good Italian shoes, even cheaper ones if bought directly from Italy:wink_face:

speaking of AP i found sound imrpovements worth it, but i agree you will not get the most out of it if the rest of your digital playback chain does not deliver. AP is purifying sound in a very nice way, it will not wow you like a brand new amp but if your DAC or transport are good enough AP will grow on you so there is no way back.

 

price wise AP+PP is damn expensive but electronics is not shoes which you purchase every season, so i dare to say in the end AP turns cheaper than your shoes. :tongue:

 

for me i picked AP2+PP because i saw little use of AP1, was nice investment and makes me smile in pleasure when listening to music.


Edited by Gintaras - 10/3/13 at 12:01am
post #1114 of 1146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gintaras View Post
 

GirlsG, to each his own, you prefer shoes, someone else prefers AP+PP :biggrin:

actually for myself i pick all-tailor made shoes or good Italian shoes, even cheaper ones if bought directly from Italy:wink_face:

speaking of AP i found sound imrpovements worth it, but i agree you will not get the most out of it if the rest of your digital playback chain does not deliver. AP is purifying sound in a very nice way, it will not wow you like a brand new amp but if your DAC or transport are good enough AP will grow on you so there is no way back.

 

price wise AP+PP is damn expensive but electronics is not shoes which you purchase every season, so i dare to say in the end AP turns cheaper than your shoes. :tongue:

 

for me i picked AP2+PP because i saw little use of AP1, was nice investment and makes me smile in pleasure when listening to music.

 

For me, in terms of value, I would say the shoes would give me more since they would be more useful in my life, but that's besides the point. A top-tier converter may very well be worth it but my point is that if one is trying to acquire a converter that costs more than his amp or dac in order to chase grail, then he's doing it wrong. 

 

Might I ask, what kind of Italian shoes do you prefer? I couldn't possibly afford bespoke since they go up to $5000 for a pair...

post #1115 of 1146

GirlsG, funny, i spoke about total spending bill, because you buy shoes more often to have several pairs at least.

no, no Bespoke shoes but hand made taylor made shoes from smaller boutiques. Italian shoes plenty and i did not care so much about the brand, you know in Italy they have many factories who make shoes for top brands and then run same line production with no-name label to sell same shoes cheaper. i just visit factory store to pick what i want :tongue:

 

but taylor made shoes which wear as comfortable as a pair of slippers are not cheap, normally 800-1000 euros a pair.

 

coming back to AP i believe AP2+PP is the way to go. however i agree with you it would make little sense to put AP2 combo into weaker chain or use this in so-so setup.

 

in terms of usibility even a cheap pullover will beat any audio gear because the usibility of audio is all about pleasure and nothing else while you cannot skip clothes and shoes from your spending list :biggrin:

post #1116 of 1146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gintaras View Post
 

 

coming back to AP i believe AP2+PP is the way to go. however i agree with you it would make little sense to put AP2 combo into weaker chain or use this in so-so setup.

 

 

+1

post #1117 of 1146

As I mentioned in my review of the AP1+PP - it makes very little sense to add that combo to a lower priced system, when the money would be better spent on some other aspect. Once you settle on some top level headphones (or quality speakers), and have a nice DAC which couldn't be easily surpassed by a bit more, then you should consider the Audiophilleo combo. In that context I do think it's worth it. 

post #1118 of 1146
Quote:
Originally Posted by project86 View Post
 

As I mentioned in my review of the AP1+PP - it makes very little sense to add that combo to a lower priced system, when the money would be better spent on some other aspect. Once you settle on some top level headphones (or quality speakers), and have a nice DAC which couldn't be easily surpassed by a bit more, then you should consider the Audiophilleo combo. In that context I do think it's worth it. 

 

Totally agreed.

 

I start with a loaner plain AP2 and then I tried AP2 + PP. I have decided to keep the AP2 + PP at the second I heard it. Definitly worth the extra cash. In my system at least.

 

Talking about retail prices, when you send email to a small company like Audiophilleo, you are communicating directly with the owner/president /conceptor. That guy knows that there are other attractives and competitives options out there. So, you never know what a nice chat can bring to you as good discount. Just saying:wink_face: 

post #1119 of 1146
I have been using the ap2 for a couple of weeks now on my Audio gd NFB 10.32.

I bought it second hand and combined it with a 5V power supply manufactered by a friend who is up to the task being an engineer at Bosch Electronics.

I am more than satisfied with this combination. The ap is really plug and play at its best.

Cheers
post #1120 of 1146
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3daudio View Post

I have been using the ap2 for a couple of weeks now on my Audio gd NFB 10.32.

I bought it second hand and combined it with a 5V power supply manufactered by a friend who is up to the task being an engineer at Bosch Electronics.

I am more than satisfied with this combination. The ap is really plug and play at its best.

Cheers

+1

post #1121 of 1146

Hello head-fiers.
I've been following this thread for a long time, and wanted to recount a recent experience with the AP2. I've been using the AP2 in my system for over a year and a half. Initially I had the 'vanilla' AP2, and very quickly added the AQVOX PSU - this made a big improvement at the time, and before adding it I'd found that adding the AP2 brought both positive and negative changes to the sound (the latter being an overly upfront sound, and a harsh midrange). The AQVOX tamed those negative aspects, and the sound was very satisfying for a while. I later added the SoTM PCIe USB output card, which brought further improvements (deeper, cleaner bass, and increased depth to the sound stage). At the time, I experimented with removing the AQVOX, and noted that it no longer seemed to make a difference whether or not it was in place - I surmised that whatever the SoTM card was doing was negating the need for the AQVOX. But still, I kept it in the chain, since I liked that it removed the need for having power drawn through the USB cable. I then, some months latter, added the pure power upgrade to the AP2. This brought further, though a little more subtle, improvements. Again, I experimented with removing the AQVOX, and again found that it made no noticeable difference, but I kept it in the chain anyway, for the reasons I've stated. I have just recently added the SoTM battery back into the mix, powering the USB output from that, rather than the PC's PSU. This made a very noticeable, and surprising (in that, I didn't know my speakers could sound like this) improvement to the sound - significantly improved the realism of the presentation. Again, I experimented with removing the AQVOX, and this time found that doing so made a noticeable, negative difference - the improved realism was gone, and it sounded more akin to the way that it had done before I'd added the SoTM battery. My impression then, is that even with the pure power upgrade, and the various SoTM bits, the AQVOX can yield an improvement, but - on this experience - only when the other things are in place. I had actually been hoping for the opposite outcome, as it would be useful to free-up the power socket that the AQVOX occupies, but it looks like I'll be keeping it in place. I'd be interested to hear if anyone else has had similar experiences.
Cheers!

post #1122 of 1146

Pinch, i am curious what system components you have in chain?

 

i cannot see how PSU AQVOX can improve sound when knowing PP and AP2 taking power from USB while your PSU is wall plug. i thought battery type PSU should be cleaner than wall plug PSU. correct me if i am wrong.

 

i use Mac Mini server dedicated only to music playback via USB PP and AP2 into SPDIF DAC and i find this combination stellar sounding for my ear.

post #1123 of 1146

So: PC (custom built, low-power, fanless), outputting flac via the SoTM card + SoTM battery --> Furutech USB cable --> AQVOX PSU --> AP2 (+ PP) --> Audiolab MDAC.

 

The signal is not itself passed through through the PP module and onto the AP2 - as it can be on one configuration - but direct to the AP2, while the PP itself is powered by a separate USB line from the PC (in the manual it stated that - in theory - this might yield marginally better results; I didn't experiment with the alternative).

 

Looking at the PP gallery on the Audiophilleo website (http://www.audiophilleo.com/ppgallery.aspx), it seems that while the PP feeds clean power to the AP2's clocks, "processeing" - whatever this involves(?) - is nevertheless powered by "dirty" USB power. My only guess would be that feeding cleaner power for processing, via the AQVOX, is yielding some benefit.

 

As I mentioned, when I experimented with removing the AQVOX after getting the PP upgrade (and before getting the SoTM battery), I couldn't detect a difference - it's only since also adding the SoTM battery that removing the AQVOX seems to make a detectable and negative difference. I've no understanding of why this might be so - just reporting my findings :)

post #1124 of 1146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinch View Post
 

So: PC (custom built, low-power, fanless), outputting flac via the SoTM card + SoTM battery --> Furutech USB cable --> AQVOX PSU --> AP2 (+ PP) --> Audiolab MDAC.

 

The signal is not itself passed through through the PP module and onto the AP2 - as it can be on one configuration - but direct to the AP2, while the PP itself is powered by a separate USB line from the PC (in the manual it stated that - in theory - this might yield marginally better results; I didn't experiment with the alternative).

 

Looking at the PP gallery on the Audiophilleo website (http://www.audiophilleo.com/ppgallery.aspx), it seems that while the PP feeds clean power to the AP2's clocks, "processeing" - whatever this involves(?) - is nevertheless powered by "dirty" USB power. My only guess would be that feeding cleaner power for processing, via the AQVOX, is yielding some benefit.

 

As I mentioned, when I experimented with removing the AQVOX after getting the PP upgrade (and before getting the SoTM battery), I couldn't detect a difference - it's only since also adding the SoTM battery that removing the AQVOX seems to make a detectable and negative difference. I've no understanding of why this might be so - just reporting my findings :)

 

Does the AQVox separate the ground from the computer and AP2? Like you said, the PP part powers only the output section and clocks, but the receiver still relies on bus power. The AP2 unit supposedly provides galvanic isolation, but how well such a small unit could do that I'm unsure of. Does driving the SOtM with battery isolate the the power rails only, or does it lift the ground internally from the rest of the computer? (I don't think it should be able to do this.) If the the AQVox is doing something to provide another solid ground between the two devices or completely disconnecting the grounds then it may be able to remove some noise from the system.

 

I use an ifi iUSB Power which is a device with similar intents to the AQVox. It makes a very appreciable difference with my SPDIF converter (but it does not have it's own battery supply.)

post #1125 of 1146

I'm afraid I don't know enough about these devices to answer your questions, but that's an interesting suggestion re. grounding. Another factor is that, when using the AQVOX, I'm able to set the SoTM card not to output USB power, and perhaps this makes some contribution.

 

But actually, after swapping back and forth a bit this afternoon, I'm now less convinced about my initial impressions - things are sounding much closer than they struck me as sounding initially.

 

As I mentioned, I'd like it to be the case that the AQVOX can be removed without losing anything. I think I shall leave everything as it is for now, and take some time to adjust to present sound - I only installed the SoTM battery two days ago, and so haven't got the full measure of things - and once I'm more familiar with it, I shall again try removing the AQVOX. No doubt I'll report back :)

 

One thing that is certain though, is that adding both the SoTM card - which is designed to filter out computer noise - and the battery pack (indeed, this more so) make for significant improvements even with the PP in the mix, so the addition of the PP - which also lifts performance - is not the last word on eliminating the effects of dirty PC power on the sound that the AP2 outputs.


Edited by Pinch - 1/12/14 at 9:18am
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