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Audio-Gd Reference 10 - Page 7

post #91 of 342
Thread Starter 

Yes I like the "preamp" aspects of the Ref 10, and a balanced headphone amp is always nice.   I suppose incorporating these must entail some compromise over a component that is focused on being a DAC and nothing else.

post #92 of 342
Quote:
Originally Posted by milosz View Post

Yes I like the "preamp" aspects of the Ref 10, and a balanced headphone amp is always nice.   I suppose incorporating these must entail some compromise over a component that is focused on being a DAC and nothing else.

 

You save on cables, on pcb traces lenght and on some reduntant psu.

I was considering it, but I like too much amp-rolling :)

post #93 of 342
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

It's more so that Japanese DACs, which now often use the AKM chips, are voiced to in a fairly similiar way. It's a bit like the whole "British Sound" and "American Sound" thing. There's somewhat of a "Japanese sound" too.

 

 

Bingo.

 

I find the AKM sound to be accurate, full bodied, tonally neutral, yet suffers from the same issues that the other SD chips suffer from (which seems to bother me a lot more than most folks). The voicing between Wolfson and AKM is roughly similar to what you describe Curra...the British sound a little less bold, more relaxed or refined, whereas the AKM has that big bold, larger than life presentation with a decent helping of UK style finesse.

 

Peete.

post #94 of 342
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pricklely Peete View Post

 

 

Bingo.

 

I find the AKM sound to be accurate, full bodied, tonally neutral, yet suffers from the same issues that the other SD chips suffer from (which seems to bother me a lot more than most folks). The voicing between Wolfson and AKM is roughly similar to what you describe Curra...the British sound a little less bold, more relaxed or refined, whereas the AKM has that big bold, larger than life presentation with a decent helping of UK style finesse.

 

Peete.

"SD  chips"   - what's "SD" mean  in this context?

post #95 of 342

SD = Sigma Delta.

post #96 of 342
Thread Starter 

sigma delta, OK sure, I thought it must be something related to DAC topology  but I just couldn't pattern match the acronym with a relevant concept.

 

Currawong, I fear I am getting old and my circuits just don't connect like they used to.  Going to be 58 soon. 

post #97 of 342

On a sidenote....have the Phoenix amp running balanced with some HD650 but the DAC feeding the amp is SE.Should I get the NFB 17 if I wanna go all balanced or sell the Phoenix and get the REF10?Thanks for your input!

post #98 of 342

I feel the phase splitter in the Phoenix is very good and it does well with SE DACs. You might ask Kingwa as he will give you a straight answer about the capabilities of his designs.

post #99 of 342

Does anybody have a Ref.10 yet? If yes, any impressions?

 

I am strongly considering to buy one. I'm looking for a powerful SS amp with a remote control - being balanced is not necessary, but nice to have. Plenty of inputs/outputs are a plus, too. Are there any viable alternatives to the audio-gd DAC/Amps? So far, I was unable to find any...

post #100 of 342
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad Dude View Post

Does anybody have a Ref.10 yet? If yes, any impressions?

 

I am strongly considering to buy one. I'm looking for a powerful SS amp with a remote control - being balanced is not necessary, but nice to have. Plenty of inputs/outputs are a plus, too. Are there any viable alternatives to the audio-gd DAC/Amps? So far, I was unable to find any...

I'm saving up....selling other stuff....

post #101 of 342

Well, I guess nobody actually has one of these yet. I'm hesitating to buy one blindly, and besides one can never be sure if audio-gd doesn't come up with a new and improved model a few weeks after the last has been released...

post #102 of 342
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad Dude View Post

Well, I guess nobody actually has one of these yet. I'm hesitating to buy one blindly, and besides one can never be sure if audio-gd doesn't come up with a new and improved model a few weeks after the last has been released...

Yeah  I'd be moving to buy faster if I saw a positive review.

post #103 of 342

Got my ref. 10 for 2 weeks (france, local audio-gd authorized reseller), it's really good coupled with a re-terminated 4 pin XLR balanced HD800. However it's sometimes a bit too bright in the upper highs so I tame it with a woo-audio WA6 tube-amp and use the ref.10 as a pre-amp, then it's just perfect (though, in this configuration I lack the balanced headphones output, so I consider upgrading to a WA22 amp...)

 

Keep in mind that I can't really compare the ref. 10 with other systems. My previous, and first high-end, setup was HD650 + iBasso D10 (SS usb-dac/amp portable unit). Of course the ref 10 is miles away, but it only seems logical given the range difference between them...

 

My only reproaches (not sound related) are: 

 

  • it's pretty darn big piece of equipement for an headphone system (15 kgs, 43.43cms :/ ). Overall build quality is OK but it's not that great. Would love a non-painted bare aluminium option to match my other gears (apple case, HD800, woo-audio amp...)

 

 

  • I would like to have a pot for volume control (even if, due to the I/V control, it would need to be a digital pot, it would really be great). Cause having to press a button for vol + and another one for vol - is sometimes quite frustrating...

 

 

  • The remote control is way oversized, 300-400 grams for 5 huge buttons... a RF link instead of IR would also be great (though the radio link could somehow bleed in audio channels...)

Edited by Ivanovitch - 5/26/12 at 6:49pm
post #104 of 342

Thanks for these impressions!

I'm a bit surprised that you prefer the WA6 to the amp in the Ref. 10 - I used to have a WA6, and to be perfectly honest, it just did not sound good (to my ears). While the tonality was nice, There was a distinct lack of power and resolution. But it probably would tame the treble of bright headphones, this much is true.

post #105 of 342

Kingwa isn't kidding when he says "neutral" - M6 and Ref 7.1 driving HE-6 just doesn't hold back with bad recordings and lets it all through full force.  I think this is probably great for a pre-amp, but with headphones there is the problem that the treble is much more forward than speakers.  A lot of music is mastered on speakers, so when played back over headphones it will often sound bright.  For me though my Ref 7.1 M6 and HE-6 sounds incredible with 90% of material, but you do have to carefully select every component to avoid adding brightness or removing body.

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