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post #766 of 1011
Quote:
Originally Posted by project86 View Post

 

 

In some circles, that means something very different that what you probably intended to say wink.gif

 

Seriously though, M-DAC is probably the way to go in your case. Since it seem fairly popular you can probably even find one on the used market if you want - a lot of these units from smaller companies are difficult to find second hand. 

Just on a spec front, other then the Jitter thing, the D18 is a fair bit better then the M-DAC, And man oh man the M-DAC is ugly as sin, looks like the cousin of the NAD 3020. 

 

(Forgive me for this, but I have Fine Art training so looks matter) but at its retail price, I may just overlook the looks. The HP amp is a nice bonus, I'm willing to bet it will play nicely with my Denons. 

Now to wait till I finally get my Audio-GD Master 8 (which is gonna be months, when I have the cash) and then to convince myself this is a big improvement over my STX. Lol sounds like a circlejerk, but I think we all know I will buy one, if I don't find something else to perv over..

post #767 of 1011

Its funny how different people think different things look good or bad....

 

Personally I like the look of the Mdac and also my NAD 326Bee amp... Black with blue LED's = Win

 

And IMO the Audio GD stuff is a bit ugly.... Seriously you would rather have a calculator style display to a OLED screen?....


Edited by nicholars - 1/29/13 at 10:08am
post #768 of 1011

the gungnirs is also a big step up over the bifrost with less grain, more resolution, and especially more bass that's tight. it's descriptions make it sound like it leans more towards neutrality than romantic yulong and eastern electric DACs. i just don't go for a "warm sound" at all. the few times i've heard  tubes, i've been unimpressed, and now that i have resolving speakers with fast metal domes, i prefer the more detailed sound of my panasonic receiver's DAC, even if it does have a little bit of that "glassy" sound that class D amps in particular are known for over the softer and more diffused sound of my sony DVD player's DAC even if it is a little less edgy sounding. i DESPISE ported speakers which lean towards warmth more often than not too.

 

musicality at the expense of detail and neutrality just isn't my cup of tea. if i got high end cans, they'd probably be stax or planars. gungnir sounds like it has that sort of sound more than the tubey sound of yulong, eastern electric and grant etc. i particularly despised my NAD receiver on soft domes for those very reasons. it made my NHTs sound slow, thick and veiled where now, i'm getting a little bit too much of a good thing on metal domes with the panasonic that liberated my NHT treble finally, and need gear upstream that's a little closer, but not too much, to tube musicality. i might not have hated the NAD so much with my new speakers. it's all about synergy.

 

just about ANY entry level DAC should stomp 5-10 year old sony and panasonic gear. i'm getting nice sound now, just a little bit artificial. gungnir should remove a few veils and give my system a more organic sound. i just think in the long run that any true tube gear is going to be too much warmth for my tastes. i'd agree more with the studio owner that thought the D18 was too forgiving. that's exactly how i feel about my sony DAC... too soft and diffuse. easy on the ears, but lacking the vitality that resolution gives.

 

my ideal is a system with no sound signature at all and right in the middle of cold and clinical and warm and fuzzy. gungnir sounds like the DAC to beat in the $700 and under range for those qualities while the yulong will appeal more to the musicality crowd. i'm sure though it too would sound insanely better than my old consumer gear, but the gungnir should do more to make my little infinite baffles act like magnepan planars with the lightning fast detailed bass that excites me. that's an area the yulong would fall behind in along with a lot of the other popular entry level musicality over neutrality DACs out there. to me, euphonics = distortion even if it does sound purdy.


Edited by budget minded - 1/29/13 at 2:45pm
post #769 of 1011
It's good to see that you know exactly what you like. Getting to that point seems like more than half the battle. Then you can cater to it. It's also interesting how much perceptions and preferences vary among individuals.

When I listen to my Yulong D18 and Woo Audio WA22, I hear music that sounds normal to my ears (granted its not the slowest and "tubey" of amps, plus I have faster and more detailed tubes in). When I listen to gear that is regarded for the sound you describe as your preferred sound, it usually tends to seem a little analytical and dry to me compared to live music, although I really appreciate the detail.

Maybe it's what each person hears that feels closer to live music to them that drives their preferences.
Quote:
Originally Posted by budget minded View Post

the gungnirs is also a big step up over the bifrost with less grain, more resolution, and especially more bass that's tight. it's descriptions make it sound like it leans more towards neutrality than romantic yulong and eastern electric DACs. i just don't go for a "warm sound" at all. the few times i've heard  tubes, i've been unimpressed, and now that i have resolving speakers with fast metal domes, i prefer the more detailed sound of my panasonic receiver's DAC, even if it does have a little bit of that "glassy" sound that class D amps in particular are known for over the softer and more diffused sound of my sony DVD player's DAC even if it is a little less edgy sounding. i DESPISE ported speakers which lean towards warmth more often than not too.

musicality at the expense of detail and neutrality just isn't my cup of tea. if i got high end cans, they'd probably be stax or planars. gungnir sounds like it has that sort of sound more than the tubey sound of yulong, eastern electric and grant etc. i particularly despised my NAD receiver on soft domes for those very reasons. it made my NHTs sound slow, thick and veiled where now, i'm getting a little bit too much of a good thing on metal domes with the panasonic that liberated my NHT treble finally, and need gear upstream that's a little closer, but not too much, to tube musicality. i might not have hated the NAD so much with my new speakers. it's all about synergy.

just about ANY entry level DAC should stomp 5-10 year old sony and panasonic gear. i'm getting nice sound now, just a little bit artificial. gungnir should remove a few veils and give my system a more organic sound. i just think in the long run that any true tube gear is going to be too much warmth for my tastes. i'd agree more with the studio owner that thought the D18 was too forgiving. that's exactly how i feel about my sony DAC... too soft and diffuse. easy on the ears, but lacking the vitality that resolution gives.

my ideal is a system with no sound signature at all and right in the middle of cold and clinical and warm and fuzzy. gungnir sounds like the DAC to beat in the $700 and under range for those qualities while the yulong will appeal more to the musicality crowd. i'm sure though it too would sound insanely better than my old consumer gear, but the gungnir should do more to make my little infinite baffles act like magnepan planars with the lightning fast detailed bass that excites me. that's an area the yulong would fall behind in along with a lot of the other popular entry level musicality over neutrality DACs out there. to me, euphonics = distortion even if it does sound purdy.

Edited by Sid-Fi - 1/29/13 at 9:15pm
post #770 of 1011
Thread Starter 

Good points - if we all figured out what we liked, and went in that direction, we'd all be much better off. I hate when I see people recommending their favorite high-end DAC or amp to someone who clearly is after a different type of sound. Just because someone opts for a different brand than the one you like - doesn't make them wrong! Nor does it make you wrong for liking what you like! Everyone hears different on a physical level, not to mention every system is different. What sounds like "real music" to me over my D18 might sound too relaxed and fake to someone else. Or what sounds clean and transparent on something like my Anedio D2, might sound artificial and overly bright to someone else. And that's OK. 

post #771 of 1011
See below for what I meant to say...wink.gif Well said my friend.
Quote:
Originally Posted by project86 View Post

Good points - if we all figured out what we liked, and went in that direction, we'd all be much better off. I hate when I see people recommending their favorite high-end DAC or amp to someone who clearly is after a different type of sound. Just because someone opts for a different brand than the one you like - doesn't make them wrong! Nor does it make you wrong for liking what you like! Everyone hears different on a physical level, not to mention every system is different. What sounds like "real music" to me over my D18 might sound too relaxed and fake to someone else. Or what sounds clean and transparent on something like my Anedio D2, might sound artificial and overly bright to someone else. And that's OK. 
post #772 of 1011

Shame that the Yulong is apparently bad with low quality sources etc. Because it sound like perfect sound signature I am looking for... However I want it for PC and TV / Blu ray as well so I dont think it will be suitable?

 

The Mdac looks good as well but I am not sure I can justify that much money for a subtle change in sound quality.


Edited by nicholars - 1/29/13 at 11:18pm
post #773 of 1011
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicholars View Post

Its funny how different people think different things look good or bad....

 

Personally I like the look of the Mdac and also my NAD 326Bee amp... Black with blue LED's = Win

 

And IMO the Audio GD stuff is a bit ugly.... Seriously you would rather have a calculator style display to a OLED screen?....

the black isn't the problem, its the lack of a design language (if they have one it has no cohesion) I like the Audio-GD Master 8, the rest - not so much. 

I love the look of tubes, and I know this isn't a solid state, but here's a quick example of what I do think looks good: (looks like a mix of classic and modern, and reeks of class)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by budget minded View Post

my ideal is a system with no sound signature at all and right in the middle of cold and clinical and warm and fuzzy. gungnir sounds like the DAC to beat in the $700 and under range for those qualities while the yulong will appeal more to the musicality crowd. i'm sure though it too would sound insanely better than my old consumer gear, but the gungnir should do more to make my little infinite baffles act like magnepan planars with the lightning fast detailed bass that excites me. that's an area the yulong would fall behind in along with a lot of the other popular entry level musicality over neutrality DACs out there. to me, euphonics = distortion even if it does sound purdy.

You know reading this, makes me think of the reviews i have read for the Audio-GD reference DAC's, granted they are expensive, but Kingwa made them to sound transparent, no sound signature, no covering up the flaws, no tubeyness or warmth, just pure clarity, and even ruthlessly at that. Have you look, you may just like what you read. But its propably out of your price range.

 

Personally I like my Denon D7000 headphones, and with that I have a coloured and very euphoric smooth sound, thats intoxicating with the right music. Strangely though because its so coloured it really likes clean uncoloured amps, and the same for the sources, HOWEVER the source should be smooth, and not harsh, otherwise that clean uncoloured amp may bring the harshness through, and since the Denons are a bit bright, that gets carried through to your ears, which sucks. 

 

Having said that, If I get a solid state amp/dac then I want to measure well on all fronts, and have a smooth sound, I see no point in having a Solid state amp if it measures like crap because it designed by ear *COUGH* Nu-force *COUGH*, because if I wanted that I would get a tube, where specs mean almost nothing, from my reading anyway.

 

(Feel free to rebuttal)


Edited by WiR3D - 1/30/13 at 12:24am
post #774 of 1011

So, any new d18 owners? any more impressions? 

post #775 of 1011
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by WiR3D View Post

the black isn't the problem, its the lack of a design language (if they have one it has no cohesion) I like the Audio-GD Master 8, the rest - not so much. 

I love the look of tubes, and I know this isn't a solid state, but here's a quick example of what I do think looks good: (looks like a mix of classic and modern, and reeks of class)

 

You know reading this, makes me think of the reviews i have read for the Audio-GD reference DAC's, granted they are expensive, but Kingwa made them to sound transparent, no sound signature, no covering up the flaws, no tubeyness or warmth, just pure clarity, and even ruthlessly at that. Have you look, you may just like what you read. But its propably out of your price range.

 

Personally I like my Denon D7000 headphones, and with that I have a coloured and very euphoric smooth sound, thats intoxicating with the right music. Strangely though because its so coloured it really likes clean uncoloured amps, and the same for the sources, HOWEVER the source should be smooth, and not harsh, otherwise that clean uncoloured amp may bring the harshness through, and since the Denons are a bit bright, that gets carried through to your ears, which sucks. 

 

Having said that, If I get a solid state amp/dac then I want to measure well on all fronts, and have a smooth sound, I see no point in having a Solid state amp if it measures like crap because it designed by ear *COUGH* Nu-force *COUGH*, because if I wanted that I would get a tube, where specs mean almost nothing, from my reading anyway.

 

(Feel free to rebuttal)

 

Not a rebuttal at all, but I have to point out - the more recent NuForce gear (HAP-100, DAC-100) measures well. 

post #776 of 1011

What is the best way to connect the D18 to my laptop?

post #777 of 1011
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golotripa View Post

What is the best way to connect the D18 to my laptop?

hiface2 or u18

post #778 of 1011
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golotripa View Post

What is the best way to connect the D18 to my laptop?


I recommend V-Link II or V-Link 192 .


Edited by AManAnd88Keys - 2/3/13 at 10:46am
post #779 of 1011
Quote:
Originally Posted by WiR3D View Post

Just on a spec front, other then the Jitter thing, the D18 is a fair bit better then the M-DAC, And man oh man the M-DAC is ugly as sin, looks like the cousin of the NAD 3020. 

 

(Forgive me for this, but I have Fine Art training so looks matter) but at its retail price, I may just overlook the looks. The HP amp is a nice bonus, I'm willing to bet it will play nicely with my Denons. 

Now to wait till I finally get my Audio-GD Master 8 (which is gonna be months, when I have the cash) and then to convince myself this is a big improvement over my STX. Lol sounds like a circlejerk, but I think we all know I will buy one, if I don't find something else to perv over..

You might want to train in good taste as well if you have no issue with the beautifully crafted case of the Master 8   biggrin.gif:

 

 

post #780 of 1011

How you can find that audiogd nice looking and the mdac ugly to the point you would not buy it, is a mystery to me... The 1980's calculator sytle LCD display and ugly looking headphone jacks on the Audio Gd look ugly tbh... I am sure it sounds good but it certainly does not look like something I would spend £1000+ on.... The Mdac looks more expensive and costs 1/2 the price.... TBH my cambridge audio Dacmagic looks better than both of them and cost £230.... The Yulong looks nice as well... Shame it will not work with poor sources :(


Edited by nicholars - 2/3/13 at 10:35am
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