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REVIEW: Grant Fidelity TubeDAC-11 - Page 9

post #121 of 267
Originally Posted by underhysteria View Post

Gonna place my order on these soon..

 

hope that I made my the right choice for the HD600 :)

 

Congrats!  I enjoy my TD-11 very much.. especially with the HD600.. so I hope you'll be quite happy with the pairing, too.  Remember to pick up a (male) RCA-to-(female) 1/8" (or 1/4") adapter (i.e. this).   This is needed to be able to connect your HD600 to the TD-11's tube output (and the TD-11 doesn't come with such an adapter).  The stock tube is very good.. but I recommend reading up about a few of the better 6DJ8/6922/ECC88 tubes and springing for one just for fun.  There's quite a few good tubes out there under $50 that punch above their price class.  We've discussed a few here and the AudioKarma "Grant Fidelity" subforum has a nice "tube rolling" thread going with reviews & a member maintaining a spreadsheet to keep track of how various tubes (generally) sound in the TD-11 (as commented on by other members).  Definitely recommend checking that out.

 

 

Originally Posted by JCYC5 View Post

Are most of you guys using your TubeDAC-11 as both the DAC and amp (tube-out), or are you using DAC-out to another amp?

 

The TD-11 is my primary desktop DAC and amp that I use with my laptop/desktop (via USB).  As I've mentioned before, the only time I use another amp (i.e. the Objective 2 or Leckerton UHA-6S MKII) in conjunction with the TD-11 is if I want to be able to use the TD-11's tube output with highly sensitive phones (i.e. custom IEMs and very efficient headphones which have very low impedance).  In this instance, I run a "(male) rca-to-(male) 3.5mm cable" from the TD-11's tube output to the O2 or UHA-6S MKII input, and hook up my efficient headphones or IEMs to it.  The O2/UHA acts as a solid state front end to the tube buffer.. and both these portable amps have very low output impedance (<1 ohm).  Also, the UHA & O2 are extremely transparent and neutral.. so they won't add any additional coloration to the (already colored) tube buffer.

post #122 of 267

Thanks flysweep, really appreciate you in helping me out with the t-11 and HD600.

 

My main priority is to pair the HD600 with solid state output amp component.. the tube is just a bonus :)

post #123 of 267
I find using the Dac out to the sonnet or lyr to have great result. Tube out to a tube amp made the music too smooth. However tube out to a pair of Adam ax7 really made them shine. The tube sound combine with the ribbon tweeters are beautiful. Just the right balance of musicality and details with no harshness. I can listen all day without an ear ache.
Edited by brokensound - 12/9/12 at 12:51pm
post #124 of 267
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by thisisvv View Post

Just wanted to ask , this is compatible with the Linux MPD VOYAGE etc as USB DAC from Linux PC box...

 

 

V

 

Works with my Auraliti PK90 which is based on MPD. 

post #125 of 267

I just put the Electro Harmonix tube in my TD-11 this evening--my first "tube roll!"  It easily pushes this unit into a higher class.  All of the audio reviewer words you read suddenly become real trying to describe the improvement in sound: tuneful bass (biggest difference, IMO), punch, harmonic rightness, soundstage stability, smoothness, inner detail, microdynamics, bloom, etc.  For $21 including shipping, this tube is amazing, and the TD-11 has become even more amazing.  I do most of my listening on a pair of Audioengine 2 speakers, which apparently love being fed a signal worth far beyond their $199 price tag.  They are amazing, too.

 

The box the tube came in should have with a warning about calling your doctor if you get goosebumps lasting more than four hours...

post #126 of 267

Thumbs up to grant fidelity for the extremely fast shipping!

 

However I cant get this to work with the digital output (no sound!)

 

soundcard SPDIF out ---> t-11 (digital input) ---> turns switch to 'optical' --> the 'digital' LED is flashed in red

 

Am i missing out something here? I used the blue toslink cable provided in the package.

 

It works perfectly fine with the usb connection though.

post #127 of 267

First, right click on the volume icon in your system task tray, and choose "Playback devices"...

 

 

1000

 

Second, right click on the SPDIF output and choose "Set as Default Device"

1000

 

Third, click on the 1000 below my post

 

 

NOTE: in foobar you choose your output device independent of window's default output device.  You hit ^P, select Playback -> Output, and pick from the Device dropdown

post #128 of 267

Doesnt seem to work for the toslink connection.

 

 

 

No sound no matter which applications I used.

 

 

However, there were no problems with USB connection via the method you shown in which I select the 'grant fidelity-11' as the default playing device.

post #129 of 267
Originally Posted by BradleyP View Post

I just put the Electro Harmonix tube in my TD-11 this evening--my first "tube roll!"  It easily pushes this unit into a higher class.  All of the audio reviewer words you read suddenly become real trying to describe the improvement in sound: tuneful bass (biggest difference, IMO), punch, harmonic rightness, soundstage stability, smoothness, inner detail, microdynamics, bloom, etc.  For $21 including shipping, this tube is amazing, and the TD-11 has become even more amazing.  I do most of my listening on a pair of Audioengine 2 speakers, which apparently love being fed a signal worth far beyond their $199 price tag.  They are amazing, too.

 

The box the tube came in should have with a warning about calling your doctor if you get goosebumps lasting more than four hours...

 

Good stuff, man.. Glad the EH 6922 tube worked out for you (ahhh.. I feel validated.. lol).  One of the most obvious thing it offers over the stock tube (aside from a different signature) is delicacy and air.. the EH tube offers impressive speed and clarity for the frighteningly low price tag.  As I said in the AudioKarma forum/tube rolling thread.. this is a must have tube for those new to the TD-11.. or tube rolling in general.

post #130 of 267
Quote:
No sound no matter which applications I used.

 

 

I doubt this is the issue but, on my TD-11 the source labels don't line up with the knob positions so I have to count the clicks to know which input I'm on.

 

Seeing those green bars in your screen shot tells me that windows looks ok.  I'm assume that if you choose "Test" instead of "Set as Default Device" you aren't hearing the jingle?  You can also run the jingle test at each frequency if you right-click+properties on the SPDIF device and go to "Supported Formats"

1000

 

BTW: Alt-Prnt-Scrn will grab a single window/dialog instead of the whole screen.  But if your editor doesn't allow you to paste images from the copy buffer (like head-fi.org) then you still need to paste it into a paint program to make a file out of it.  The windows 7 "Snipping Tool" under accessories can capture + save to disk.  I gave my Snipping Tool the keyboard shortcut ^-Alt-S

 

 

To truly vindicate windows you'll have to test the TD-11 with another device that has an optical out like your TV, receiver, DVD player, etc.

post #131 of 267

Great review and thread! I'm completely torn over whether to go for a TD-11 or a D100 MKII. I have a couple thoughts/question along those lines:

 

1) I understand the D100 MKII is probably better overall given it's price, but if I'm willing to spend that much, is there any reason to prefer the "sound" of the TD-11 instead? I'll be using HD 600 primarily, and AKG K601 cans occasionally, (both through the SS amp, and the HD 600 with the tube out). Will the SS output power the K601's adequately in either unit?

 

2) I do like the pre-amp feature of the TD-11, but not sure if I want to get a lesser DAC just for that feature. This is probably where if the D100 had a preamp it would already be purchased. So just how big of a difference is there with the DAC component between the two? Thinking in terms of detail, transparency, etc.

 

3) I have an Adcom power amp for monitor speakers. Would I just connect the L/R RCA cables from the Adcom to the line-out or tube-out of the TD-11? Nothing else needed?

 

4) At the end of the day - which is going to sound the absolute best with my two headphones, regardless of price, as an all-in-one DAC/amp combo? (Also, heavy preference towards the HD 600 here, K601 performance is just a bonus). I want the HD 600 to sing as well as it can with a combo unit.

 

I really do appreciate these review threads, so thanks for taking the time to share opinions and impressions!

post #132 of 267

I decided to go with the TubeDAC-11. FlySweep, I have to say your posts really helped sway me in that direction. I'm going to have to try that EH 6922 tube now! :)

post #133 of 267
Originally Posted by edtandy View Post

I decided to go with the TubeDAC-11. FlySweep, I have to say your posts really helped sway me in that direction. I'm going to have to try that EH 6922 tube now! :)

 

Congrats!  Glad I could help.  The EH 6922 tube is a great choice.. I got mine from PartsExpress.. priced well & ships fast.  Let it burn in for a good 20 hours before fully evaluating it.  Once you've got the tube in the TD-11, the tube takes about 10-15 minutes to fully "warm up."  You can, of course, listen with the tube out right when it's powered on (and it'll sound great).. but you'l hear it optimally after ~15 minutes.

 

Been looking into a Voshkod tube that's got some nice reviews, as well.  That'll probably be my last tube for a while.. cause the Zaerix, EH, GL, and stock tubes are "getting it done" for me.

 

Hope you enjoy the TD-11 & EH 6922.. I look forward to reading your thoughts on it.

post #134 of 267

Well the TD-11 arrived today, and I've been impressed with it. Very detailed sound that should only improve with break-in. BUT... after having it connected to my external power amp to 2-channel speakers, and with headphones plugged in, I went to unplug the headphones (with volume at zero), and a severely nasty pop went through the speakers. Now it appears the right channel in my external power amp is completely dead! I tested the speakers with another source and they work fine. WTH!
 

post #135 of 267

the Senn HD800s I got here used (w/ cardas blue cable) love being driven by the TubeDac-11.

i'm going through all of my half dozen tubes again and so far land back on the "russian rocket", sound is also very good from the tube out through my hr2, so I have a huge range of "flavor" changing capabliity. depending on the recording, I am liking the sonics straihjt outta the tube out more than through the hr2, but on some things the difference favors the hr2. could live with either very easily. the td-11 proves itself to me again as it rises to the occasion to drive the higher end cans i'm tryin with it now (the hd800s and a pair of Beyer T1s), I love this unassuming little beauty. You do not have to spend a fortune to drive the HD800s to glory as the TD11 is less than 400 bucks and the voshkod tube is less than 30 bucks.   


Edited by analog'd - 1/27/13 at 3:02pm
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