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Review: Resonessence Labs Invicta - new high end DAC/amp/playback system - Page 38

post #556 of 697
Thread Starter 

Interesting post Amos. Not sure I hear the D2 as being overly aggressive but I do concede it has more forward mids than some others. Maybe partly why I love it so much?

 

I gotta hear this Master 7 thing one of these days. Too bad it's so huge... when I get my KGSSHV going, I'll already be losing some rack space, and the Master 7 is huge too. Dang. 

post #557 of 697

I listened to it late last night (way past my bedtime) on my recently acquired Hex, and it was like I've never heard it before.  It's a brilliant recording and Rubarth is amazing.  I'm also very sleepy today.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BournePerfect View Post

I bought that Rubarth album a while ago-still need to listen to it. :/

 

-Daniel

post #558 of 697
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

I have Anakchan's Invicta here (it was Radio_head's I think), so I plan to stack the Master 7, NFB-10ES2, Anedio D2 and Invicta up for a DAC-off. I'll plug them into a regular power strip with normal power cables as if I use the Power Plant they'll all sound too good! 

 

The comments about the Benchmark DAC 2 are interesting, as in the shop when I heard it I thought the sound was a bit so-so. Given the HUGE differences in power supplies and my experience with the Power Plant, I can't help wondering if some of it wasn't down to being in a shop full of electronics.

 

Update: On DAC performance alone, so far I've compared all but the Master 7. All were compared using the built-in USB.

 

Audio-gd NFB-10ES2: While not harsh at all, the music sounds rather like it would look watched on a TV screen: Good and enjoyable but there is a realisation (with experience) that you're not listening to the "real thing". 

Anedio D2: Impresses with detail and bass impact, but is forward and aggressive with vocals and the mid range.

Invicta: More of a dark, "effortless" sound that makes the NFB-10ES2 sound only 2-dimensional and the D2 sound harsh. The subtleties and depth of the music and instruments is far more apparent. An entire drum note, for example, can be heard clearly from the initial impact to the decay and echo across the studio, whereas that last bit of subtlety is lost with the D2 and just sounds like "WHACK" with nothing else on the NFB-10.

 

Update 2: Ok, here is where I really struggle to explain things: The Invicta vs. the Master 7. 

 

I was struggling to try and discern the differences, if any, in micro-detail on the Chesky binaural Amber Rubarth album. With both you can pick out the sounds of the performers clothes moving and feel the deliberation with which they played each note. Both reach into the music to such a degree that a trained musician could easily evaluate their performance down to the tiniest movement. But what struck me switching back and forth between the two DACs is: I felt the emotion more in each note with the Master 7. I cannot explain that, it is just what I felt, along with the detailed impression of the performance.

 

It's good to see the Master 7 can compete with DACs in a higher price range.  I'm also very interested in the HEX.  I'm trying to stay around the $3.5K mark. 

post #559 of 697
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post

 

It's good to see the Master 7 can compete with DACs in a higher price range.  I'm also very interested in the HEX.  I'm trying to stay around the $3.5K mark. 

good.. that's the sweet spot

post #560 of 697
Quote:
Originally Posted by project86 View Post

Interesting post Amos. Not sure I hear the D2 as being overly aggressive but I do concede it has more forward mids than some others. Maybe partly why I love it so much?

 

I gotta hear this Master 7 thing one of these days. Too bad it's so huge... when I get my KGSSHV going, I'll already be losing some rack space, and the Master 7 is huge too. Dang. 

 

It was likely relative to how I usually have my system set up where there is no harshness out of anything, so I probably noticed it more than I would have in the past. It was interesting to hear it sounding the way it did as it had sounded more thin the first time I used it.

 

I should also sort out rigging up a cable to use the headphone sockets of the Invicta in differential (balanced) mode. Do you know what the pin-out for that is?

post #561 of 697
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

 

It was likely relative to how I usually have my system set up where there is no harshness out of anything, so I probably noticed it more than I would have in the past. It was interesting to hear it sounding the way it did as it had sounded more thin the first time I used it.

 

I should also sort out rigging up a cable to use the headphone sockets of the Invicta in differential (balanced) mode. Do you know what the pin-out for that is?

 

Tip will be +ve
Ring will be –ve
Sleeve will be ground

 

It's definitely worth it imo - SE sounds darn good, but balanced is a whole new animal. 

post #562 of 697

I disagree with the "forward sounding" comment. If you listen to primarily studio recordings, many engineers tweek the 2.5k range to enhance prescence. A natural live recording is the only real test. I do not find any anomalies in the Anedios sound. I do find it rather cable sensitive. I just switched from some 1m Beldn 89207 to 1ft Gore cable and found a notable improvement-not subtle at all. This into a ClassD audio Spiral Groove mastering amp and Paradigm Sig1s. It is still GIGO and the Anedio allows you to hear the garbage. Regards

post #563 of 697
Quote:
Originally Posted by project86 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

 

It was likely relative to how I usually have my system set up where there is no harshness out of anything, so I probably noticed it more than I would have in the past. It was interesting to hear it sounding the way it did as it had sounded more thin the first time I used it.

 

I should also sort out rigging up a cable to use the headphone sockets of the Invicta in differential (balanced) mode. Do you know what the pin-out for that is?

 

Tip will be +ve
Ring will be –ve
Sleeve will be ground

 

It's definitely worth it imo - SE sounds darn good, but balanced is a whole new animal. 

 

I just realised after I posted it would be the same pinout as pro-audio TRS and pulled out a pair of XLR adaptors....then found out the headphone sockets aren't far enough apart for them both to fit. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by veritas aurum View Post

I disagree with the "forward sounding" comment. If you listen to primarily studio recordings, many engineers tweek the 2.5k range to enhance prescence. A natural live recording is the only real test. I do not find any anomalies in the Anedios sound. I do find it rather cable sensitive. I just switched from some 1m Beldn 89207 to 1ft Gore cable and found a notable improvement-not subtle at all. This into a ClassD audio Spiral Groove mastering amp and Paradigm Sig1s. It is still GIGO and the Anedio allows you to hear the garbage. Regards

 

I didn't notice it until I did the comparison with headphones. Maybe it is more so that the Invicta and Master 7 are more spacious and smooth (as in lower distortion)-sounding and what I noticed with the Anedio in comparison seems more distinct. This more so given that I felt the Invicta was more "cold" comparing it to the Esimus DP1 but it sounds more "dark" compared to the D2. Like with headphones, their character is all the more apparent in comparison.

post #564 of 697

I usually equate "smooth" with muffled. Listening to some remastered recordings from the late 50s I found one to be somewhat bright. Then I discovered that it had been remastered using B&W speakers which IMHO have a rolled off top end. No wonder it was bright. Then listened to some DG remasters from the same era. No brightness. Obviously "flattter" sounding monitors were used. I suspect the same applies to headphones which I admit, I use very little. Regards

post #565 of 697
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

I have Anakchan's Invicta here (it was Radio_head's I think), so I plan to stack the Master 7, NFB-10ES2, Anedio D2 and Invicta up for a DAC-off. I'll plug them into a regular power strip with normal power cables as if I use the Power Plant they'll all sound too good! 

The comments about the Benchmark DAC 2 are interesting, as in the shop when I heard it I thought the sound was a bit so-so. Given the HUGE differences in power supplies and my experience with the Power Plant, I can't help wondering if some of it wasn't down to being in a shop full of electronics.

Update: On DAC performance alone, so far I've compared all but the Master 7. All were compared using the built-in USB.

Audio-gd NFB-10ES2: While not harsh at all, the music sounds rather like it would look watched on a TV screen: Good and enjoyable but there is a realisation (with experience) that you're not listening to the "real thing". 
Anedio D2: Impresses with detail and bass impact, but is forward and aggressive with vocals and the mid range.
Invicta: More of a dark, "effortless" sound that makes the NFB-10ES2 sound only 2-dimensional and the D2 sound harsh. The subtleties and depth of the music and instruments is far more apparent. An entire drum note, for example, can be heard clearly from the initial impact to the decay and echo across the studio, whereas that last bit of subtlety is lost with the D2 and just sounds like "WHACK" with nothing else on the NFB-10.

Update 2: Ok, here is where I really struggle to explain things: The Invicta vs. the Master 7. 

I was struggling to try and discern the differences, if any, in micro-detail on the Chesky binaural Amber Rubarth album. With both you can pick out the sounds of the performers clothes moving and feel the deliberation with which they played each note. Both reach into the music to such a degree that a trained musician could easily evaluate their performance down to the tiniest movement. But what struck me switching back and forth between the two DACs is: I felt the emotion more in each note with the Master 7. I cannot explain that, it is just what I felt, along with the detailed impression of the performance.

Nice description Amos.
post #566 of 697

I rigged up a cable for differential headphone mode, but the volume doesn't go very loud. I've been converting files from PCM to DSD to see what the difference is too. DSD is definitely very pleasant with classical.

post #567 of 697
Very nice findings Currawong! So based on your description, the Master 7 is on par with the Invicta, but with a little more "musical" flavor and half the price. Sounds like a win for Master 7 (Invicta might be convenient for the extra features). I am waiting for more details to get a better picture.
post #568 of 697
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

I rigged up a cable for differential headphone mode, but the volume doesn't go very loud.

 

This really shouldn't be -- the volume should actually increase in differential mode since you would have more output driving each earpiece.   I'm running HD800s in differential mode from my Invicta (Cardas balanced cable with TamAudio XLR to TRS cable adapters), and find that compared to regular single-ended output, I've had to cut back the volume on the Invicta by about 5-10 db (using the Invicta's volume scale).   You might want to check the wiring in your connectors -- it almost sounds like this could be some type of phase cancellation effect, but I'm no expert by any means.

post #569 of 697
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by twsmith View Post

 

This really shouldn't be -- the volume should actually increase in differential mode since you would have more output driving each earpiece.   I'm running HD800s in differential mode from my Invicta (Cardas balanced cable with TamAudio XLR to TRS cable adapters), and find that compared to regular single-ended output, I've had to cut back the volume on the Invicta by about 5-10 db (using the Invicta's volume scale).   You might want to check the wiring in your connectors -- it almost sounds like this could be some type of phase cancellation effect, but I'm no expert by any means.

 

Agreed. Something ain't right. 

post #570 of 697

It was my fault about the volume: It had been pre-set on both channels to be -30dB at start-up. Setting it to zero the sound in differential mode with the LCD-3s is fantastic.

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