I few months back I added a digital switchboard under the Ref 7.1 motherboard to get access to two extra inputs for using with I2S signals. It worked well but the back of dac looked a bit ugly with a flatcable hanging out beside in the gap of a creative angled Tenor8802L-USB board...where the AES-XLR had been positioned earlier..
Well, a while ago, Kingwa let me know of the possibility to upgrade with the USB 32-board, the new backplate, and I bought it at once.
I did the upgrade this weekend and yesterday I finished the work. Currawong cought the experience of the upgrade very well. I shorted the "shielding-box" to make it possble to refit over the power inlet, with the longer M7-board. I also replaced all the interconnect cables with high quality silver w teflonisolation. The USB32-board and a RJ45-input was added. When I put in the ordered I also added TCXO's on both the M7-, and the USB32-boards. (I think they will repay on the sound later.)
I am feeding it with high resolution music through the USB32 from a Squeezbox Touch (EDO).. and Yes, it is already very good. But as most of You know....It will be much better with loads of burn in/aging. The oscillators and the new electronics have settle before You really know what it can achieve. Dark Knight is so right about long time burn in on Audio-gd gears.
I will at least give it couple of weeks (~500h) of burn in before I give it a real verdict.
The upgrade is recommended for people with some experience of working with electronics.
I am particularlyinterested in the difference between the USB vs spdif outputs from the squeezebox touch when feeding the REF7.1 with the USB 32 board.
Edited by Poleepkwa - 12/10/12 at 12:58am