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Audiophilleo 1 and 2 USB to S/PDIF transport - Page 9

post #121 of 1185

I think it will be SoTM because

 

imho Legato is outdated with 16bit,

imho M2Tech has too much feature... and I don't want to pay for a layout that I cannot use in the future,

imho Stello has no PSU only powered by USB,

imho Styleaudio Carat T2 is maybe a cheap alternative here (in this group) and therefore maybe under my expectation,

imho JK MK3 Hiface is not sympatic enough because of the batteries

 

But AP2 looks nice - the only downside here is the crucial BNC-to-COAX (RCA) adapter when I attach it to the DAC - I feel this connection is too fuzy that way. 

 

So looks like I have narrowed it down to SoTM HD & AP2.

post #122 of 1185
Quote:
Originally Posted by sorue View Post


Great list, don't miss the ART Legato if one only needs 16/44.1

 


I didn't forget about the Legato, I just don't think it's quite apples to apples with the others because of the resolution limitation. That and I think the excuse for making it 16/44 only is a bit bunk. Everybody else seems to have no problems using two clocks to support up to 24/192 without jitter being an issue. If a single clock made things so much better, than the Legato should be able to outperform everything else, including the Alpha USB, Off-ramp, and Diverter 192, but it does not.

 

I also didn't include the Halide Bridge because I don't think it's competitive in terms of performance with the others.

 


Edited by DaveBSC - 11/13/11 at 12:55am
post #123 of 1185

agoston: Fwiw, a dealer I spoke with liked the Lynx AES16 more than the SotM DX converter.  I had the same issue you were facing in trying to find a good converter for around $500.  Luckily, I picked up someone's used WaveLink HS and am incredibly happy with it.  I thought the reviews on what a good converter does was audiophile fluff, but it's done incredible things for my Alpha DAC.  I was generally happy with my Alpha DAC but wasn't really hearing the effusive praise people were lavishing on it.  With the WaveLink, I don't think the reviews are exaggerations anymore.  I'm now convinced that certain DACs benefit greatly from a low jitter input.

 

I had personally narrowed down my decision between the WaveLink and stock Off-Ramp 4, but it wasn't really a sure thing because I couldn't find any Off-Ramp 4 reviews (only 3), and I'm not sure if Steve offers returns.  That said, until the used WaveLink came by, I had also narrowed my decision between the SotM and Audiophilleo 2, as I had trouble rationalizing a converter that was close to $1000.  After experiencing the WaveLink, though, I now feel the converter is incredibly important depending upon your DAC.

post #124 of 1185

:-) Off-ramp 5 is coming soon. Maybe it will be the new reference...

 

Wavelink is sure marvellous but $$$.

Maybe I should buy also something used.

 

Only problem with Lynx AES16 that I don't have free PCI-E slot in my computer.

post #125 of 1185
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveBSC View Post


I didn't forget about the Legato, I just don't think it's quite apples to apples with the others because of the resolution limitation. That and I think the excuse for making it 16/44 only is a bit bunk. Everybody else seems to have no problems using two clocks to support up to 24/192 without jitter being an issue. If a single clock made things so much better, than the Legato should be able to outperform everything else, including the Alpha USB, Off-ramp, and Diverter 192, but it does not.

 

I also didn't include the Halide Bridge because I don't think it's competitive in terms of performance with the others.


 

Have you had personal experiences with all the converters you're talking about? Because i haven't come across anyone's review of the legato losing to the other converters you mentioned. There's a legato owner who has just got his hands on the alpha usb so it'll be nice to see his thoughts on the differences between the two.

 

I had a hiface before. It did 24/192, but it sounded much worse than the legato. Just because a converter does 24/192 doesn't mean it'll sound good. My friend has a wavelink HS. We did lengthy comparisons and honestly, it is splitting hairs to tell the differences


Edited by sorue - 11/13/11 at 2:28am
post #126 of 1185

Most people I've spoken to who have tried multiple converters place the Legato and WaveLink at the top of the stack.  Alpha USB comparisons should hopefully be gradually incoming over the next few months, but I doubt I'll be upgrading unless it's one or two standard deviations better than the WaveLink.  Last I heard, the Alpha USB uses Gordon's Wavestream code, though it presumably has a better clock.

post #127 of 1185

rolleyes.gif one or two standard deviations ? that's underdefined

Legato is so good ? For real ? Now that's interesting.

post #128 of 1185

It better be that good in my book to be that much more expensive for a converter wink.gif

 

Legato is the way to go, from a price-performance standpoint, if you can get by with 16/44.  Otherwise go WaveLink.  Try looking here and here if you'd like to read impressions and reviews.  I'm sure people would be happy to share experiences and comparisons with you if you PM them.  I got lots of feedback when I was converter hunting.


Edited by Elysian - 11/13/11 at 2:54am
post #129 of 1185
Quote:
Originally Posted by agoston.berko View Post

:-) Off-ramp 5 is coming soon. Maybe it will be the new reference...

 

Wavelink is sure marvellous but $$$.

Maybe I should buy also something used.

 

Only problem with Lynx AES16 that I don't have free PCI-E slot in my computer.


I would expect the Off-Ramp 5 to be king of the hill. Steve said he is making the Hynes USB regulator standard equipment on the 5, which will raise the price to around $1,099, but he said he expects it to outperform everything else on the market. Keep in mind that you can still go up much further from there. Add an additional $700 for the dual turbo clock, and $250 for an additional Hynes regulator on either the S/Pdif output, or the HDMI based I2S output. On top of that, you can add either $500 for a Hynes linear 12V supply or B-P-T battery supply to replace the AC adapter, or another thousand for the Empirical Monolith battery supply. That puts its price way above the rest including the Alpha USB. Only the Sonicweld Diverter 192 has a similar price tag, and while it may be very good, I doubt it can compete with a fully tricked out OR5.

 

The only thing there is though, unless you already have a DAC like the EMM, MBL, or Theta Gen VIII S2 that you want to add USB capability to, if you're looking at $2500 - 3000 for a USB converter, you might as well just get the Overdrive instead, which has an Off-Ramp built in.

 

post #130 of 1185
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

Nobody has measured them all, so we don't know. Might have to ask our friend some pages back who measured the AP1 to measure those as well. 


Exactly, the measurements on the Audiophilleo site are from a lot of different sources and taken with a variety of methods and equipment, so imo need to be taken with a grain of salt.

 

That is not to say that the AP1/2 are not incredibly good transports which I would like to own one day, just the measurements are a bit sus. 

post #131 of 1185

thanks for the recommendation. i think i will get a future proof wavelink.

post #132 of 1185
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elysian View Post

It better be that good in my book to be that much more expensive for a converter wink.gif

 

Legato is the way to go, from a price-performance standpoint, if you can get by with 16/44.  Otherwise go WaveLink.  Try looking here and here if you'd like to read impressions and reviews.  I'm sure people would be happy to share experiences and comparisons with you if you PM them.  I got lots of feedback when I was converter hunting.


I'm not so sure that's true. Have people compared the Legato to the AP2 or the JK MKIII at 16/44? Does it beat them? From what I've heard, the Legato and Wavelink may be very good, but the AP2 and JK MKIII may be better still, for considerably less money than the Wavelink.


Edited by DaveBSC - 11/13/11 at 3:12am
post #133 of 1185

Not a lot of feedback on the MKIII, much less from detailed ones from people with a review history.  I'd be interested in reading more but purely from a design perspective, the cost seems a bit high given what's posted as upgrades off the stock hiFace.  I've actually been trying to find EVO reviews lately.

 

I spoke with a few people who had technical issues with the AP2 in their system and, after trying vs. next tier up, felt it the AP2 was audibly inferior to the next tier up of converters (Diverter 2, Legato, WaveLink).  I can't speak of my own experience since I haven't used an AP1 or AP2 yet, but I generally trust those folks since their impressions have lined up with my own.  I'm sure it's a fine converter and do not want to discourage anyone from trying it, especially as Audiophilleo is one of the few sellers out there with a guaranteed trial period.

 

Not enough reviews of the Off-Ramp, particularly not from Empirical fanboys with almost no posting history.  INT202 is a mixed bag.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by agoston.berko View Post

thanks for the recommendation. i think i will get a future proof wavelink.


beerchug.gif Let us know what you think if you get it.


Edited by Elysian - 11/13/11 at 3:22am
post #134 of 1185
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveBSC View Post


I'm not so sure that's true. Have people compared the Legato to the AP2 or the JK MKIII at 16/44? Does it beat them? From what I've heard, the Legato and Wavelink may be very good, but the AP2 and JK MKIII may be better still, for considerably less money than the Wavelink.


I have no axe to grind, but you haven't heard all the converters in question, yet you insinuate that the AP2 and JK MKIII is better than the wavelink.

 

jkeny's posts in diyhifi.org and diyaudio speaks volumes about his engineering expertise, or lack thereof. There's more if you search for it. Just google "jkeny diyaudio" or "jkeny diyhifi.org". Look at the questions he's asking lol

http://www.diyhifi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1943&sid=7024620b62372a32c242a5673fd15ddc

http://www.diyhifi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1868

 


Edited by sorue - 11/13/11 at 3:47am
post #135 of 1185
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elysian View Post

Not a lot of feedback on the MKIII, much less from detailed ones from people with a review history.  I'd be interested in reading more but purely from a design perspective, the cost seems a bit high given what's posted as upgrades off the stock hiFace.  I've actually been trying to find EVO reviews lately.

 

I spoke with a few people who had technical issues with the AP2 in their system and, after trying vs. next tier up, felt it the AP2 was audibly inferior to the next tier up of converters (Diverter 2, Legato, WaveLink).  I can't speak of my own experience since I haven't used an AP1 or AP2 yet, but I generally trust those folks since their impressions have lined up with my own.  I'm sure it's a fine converter and do not want to discourage anyone from trying it, especially as Audiophilleo is one of the few sellers out there with a guaranteed trial period.

 

Not enough reviews of the Off-Ramp, particularly not from Empirical fanboys with almost no posting history.  INT202 is a mixed bag.


The one detailed impression I've seen of the MKIII is from John Darko, who described it as basically equal with the AP2. Presumably that would mean that a battery powered AP2 would win that fight. I've also seen the Legato and Wavelink described on roughly equal terms with the Lynx card, but I haven't seen those two compared with the AP2 and JK MKIII. I've seen the Off-Ramp 4 described as significantly better than the Lynx and Wavelink, but I'm not sure as to the level of upgrades it had. The Overdrive DAC which uses the same tech connected to a Mach2Music Mac Mini was listed by TAS as one of their best sounds at RMAF, for whatever that's worth.

 

The INT202 might be interesting at $500. For $1800 though, forget it.

 

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