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NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC Impressions - Page 71

post #1051 of 1531
Sorry to hear this, but thanks!

No going backwards for me!

Hope they can fix yours.......can you just return it?
post #1052 of 1531

I'm on 1.39 and am quite content with the sq. Consensus elsewhere is that subsequent updates did not sound as good so I've stayed put. I'll remain on 1.39 until there's an overwhelming chorus that it provides the best sq.

 

Odd that 1.43 isn't available on the NAD site though. I hope they haven't reverted to the policy of only allowing authorised dealers to perform the updates.

post #1053 of 1531
I'm still waiting for them to give me further information. I'll give you updates
post #1054 of 1531
wonder why your update did not work? did u ptetty much follow all instructions and it didn't go well?
post #1055 of 1531
Yes, everything was done properly. They probably changed the internals in the newer models. That would explain why mine has bricked and why 1.42 and 1.43 are not customer accessible (only compatible with these).
Edited by NicoD6 - 2/25/14 at 11:40am
post #1056 of 1531
^ That's a bit of a leap. Firmware updates can easily go wrong. That's why NAD only made the files available to authorised dealers initially. Besides, how long has 1.43 been out? I recall a delay in new firmware being out in the wild and availability on the web site.
Edited by olor1n - 2/25/14 at 11:54am
post #1057 of 1531
Quote:
Originally Posted by NicoD6 View Post

Yes, everything was done properly. They probably changed the internals in the newer models. That would explain why mine has bricked and why 1.42 and 1.43 are not customer accessible (only compatible with these).

tnx for the heads up man and i hope u get ur nad m51 back soon .

post #1058 of 1531
Quote:
Originally Posted by NicoD6 View Post

Yes, everything was done properly. They probably changed the internals in the newer models. That would explain why mine has bricked and why 1.42 and 1.43 are not customer accessible (only compatible with these).

+1  Thanks VERY much for the heads-up.  We can share notes on what NAD tell you and what they tell me in response to my question about doing same.

 

Considering that NAD direct users to the v1.41 download via their website (and in message to me), I hope and expect that there is no backwards incompatibility and they'll sort out your problem.

post #1059 of 1531

I got my M51 two nights ago and it sounds amazing. It is not as natural sounding compared to my TeddyDAC but I am hearing much more detail and instrument separation is superb. The M51 has this amazing ability to preserve the natural timbre and color of each instrument.

 

I test the DAC out last night with HDMI and I am getting even better instrument separation with it. It is great listening to all the familiar songs and being able to follow each part of the band and hearing exactly what they are playing and feeling the timbre of each instrument.

 

Anyone else have experience with HDMI? I'm using a cheap $5 hdmi cable, does it make sense to upgrade to something higher quality?

 

Also, for some reason the EQ and Menu button on the remote doesn't do anything when I press on it. And the Dim button only works when I hold onto it for 2-3 seconds. Is that normal?

post #1060 of 1531
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbiehancock00 View Post
 

I got my M51 two nights ago and it sounds amazing. It is not as natural sounding compared to my TeddyDAC but I am hearing much more detail and instrument separation is superb. The M51 has this amazing ability to preserve the natural timbre and color of each instrument.

 

I test the DAC out last night with HDMI and I am getting even better instrument separation with it. It is great listening to all the familiar songs and being able to follow each part of the band and hearing exactly what they are playing and feeling the timbre of each instrument.

 

Anyone else have experience with HDMI? I'm using a cheap $5 hdmi cable, does it make sense to upgrade to something higher quality?

 

Also, for some reason the EQ and Menu button on the remote doesn't do anything when I press on it. And the Dim button only works when I hold onto it for 2-3 seconds. Is that normal?

Glad you're enjoying it :-)

Unless your HDMI cable is very old or damaged, it will be fine. If you're worried, buy a new one from e.g. monoprice.com for $5-20. Don't buy an expensive HDMI cable without testing it first for improvement. HDMI seems less prone to cable quality than other cable types.

 

A lot of buttons on the remote have no function. It is a combo remote that also has buttons for other NAD kit.

post #1061 of 1531
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbiehancock00 View Post

 

I test the DAC out last night with HDMI and I am getting even better instrument separation with it. It is great listening to all the familiar songs and being able to follow each part of the band and hearing exactly what they are playing and feeling the timbre of each instrument.

 

Anyone else have experience with HDMI? I'm using a cheap $5 hdmi cable, does it make sense to upgrade to something higher quality?

 

Also, for some reason the EQ and Menu button on the remote doesn't do anything when I press on it. And the Dim button only works when I hold onto it for 2-3 seconds. Is that normal?

It's funny, I had a friend over earlier and we were A/B ing USB vs HDMI around the time you made this post. The USB came out a winner with more holography and openess, and overall a bit more transparent. The HDMI had more smoothness, especially in the lower registers. It sounded more musical but also more dull.

 

Now here's the thing, the USB cable was the Audioquest Diamond whereas the HDMI was an Audioquest HDMI-1. So yes the USB outperformed it audibly, but I kind of get the feeling a matching caliber HDMI cable may edge out the USB.

post #1062 of 1531
Quote:
Originally Posted by dleblanc343 View Post
 

It's funny, I had a friend over earlier and we were A/B ing USB vs HDMI around the time you made this post. The USB came out a winner with more holography and openess, and overall a bit more transparent. The HDMI had more smoothness, especially in the lower registers. It sounded more musical but also more dull.

 

Now here's the thing, the USB cable was the Audioquest Diamond whereas the HDMI was an Audioquest HDMI-1. So yes the USB outperformed it audibly, but I kind of get the feeling a matching caliber HDMI cable may edge out the USB.

Thanks for posting your test result.  Seems there is a consensus that the HDMI and USB sound different. This motivates me even more towards making sure I get the optimum set-up in this regard. "More musical but more dull"; that does not sound unlike what I was hearing. USB had some type of enjoyable impact but for me it was too far from smooth.

 

Cables, yes; top of the list. Note that I was using some disgusting left-over computer freebie USB cable to do my test. I am wanting to try a better one.  Better HDMI; worth a try. I had some audioquest carbon and chocolate HDMI cables on loan and found no noticeable improvement over my generic $10 cables ...but I never tried them from computer. I was testing from an Oppo disc player at the time (and very conscious of the audioquest price tag!).

 

Other factors are probably the exact source and software. I was using a newish MacBook Pro (that does 192/24 over HDMI) and Audirvana software. What are you using?

Cheers

post #1063 of 1531

I'm using a 2011 Mac Mini with a 24/96 max output and a cheapo HDMI cable. I'm going to try out a Thunderbolt to HDMI adapter to see if it will give any improvements.

post #1064 of 1531
Quote:
Originally Posted by dleblanc343 View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbiehancock00 View Post

 

I test the DAC out last night with HDMI and I am getting even better instrument separation with it. It is great listening to all the familiar songs and being able to follow each part of the band and hearing exactly what they are playing and feeling the timbre of each instrument.

 

Anyone else have experience with HDMI? I'm using a cheap $5 hdmi cable, does it make sense to upgrade to something higher quality?

 

Also, for some reason the EQ and Menu button on the remote doesn't do anything when I press on it. And the Dim button only works when I hold onto it for 2-3 seconds. Is that normal?

It's funny, I had a friend over earlier and we were A/B ing USB vs HDMI around the time you made this post. The USB came out a winner with more holography and openess, and overall a bit more transparent. The HDMI had more smoothness, especially in the lower registers. It sounded more musical but also more dull.

 

Now here's the thing, the USB cable was the Audioquest Diamond whereas the HDMI was an Audioquest HDMI-1. So yes the USB outperformed it audibly, but I kind of get the feeling a matching caliber HDMI cable may edge out the USB.

 

Interesting. I initially thought the same about hdmi and felt it was the weakest option for my system as well. That's no longer the case.

 

I agree that there's smoothness and  it is more "musical", but I wouldn't call it dull. If anything, switching back to usb reveals a slight etch and grain that induces fatigue. The hdmi configuration on my system sounds less artificial. Width of soundstage isn't as wide as usb, but overall imaging is more cohesive and believable.

post #1065 of 1531
Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post
 

 

Interesting. I initially thought the same about hdmi and felt it was the weakest option for my system as well. That's no longer the case.

 

I agree that there's smoothness and  it is more "musical", but I wouldn't call it dull. If anything, switching back to usb reveals a slight etch and grain that induces fatigue. The hdmi configuration on my system sounds less artificial. Width of soundstage isn't as wide as usb, but overall imaging is more cohesive and believable.


I found the same thing when I tested USB vs HDMI, that USB had this graininess to the sound, while HDMI was smoother but brighter but instrument separation was much higher with HDMI. I was listening to a track I was very familiar with on HDMI and suddenly I heard a synth line in the background that I had never realized was there before and that line was very clear and distinct with HDMI. The soundstage just seems more focused under HDMI. I still haven't decided which sound I prefer, but with HDMI I am definitely hearing more and hearing things clearer. I need to sit down some more and do some comparison.

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