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Audio-GD NFB-1.32 - Page 3

post #31 of 121

I just picked up this DAC last week and have been loving it!  I would tell you what I upgraded from, but I prefer not be laughed at, haha.

 

I will say that when it arrived, I couldn't get the USB portion to function.  It bummed me out because that is one of the reasons I purchased this unit.  I simply could NOT get the DAC to show up on my Retina Display Macbook w/ Mountain Lion.  I troubleshot with Kingwa (who was great to deal with and responded very quickly), and after trying several things, we figured out that it was an issue with the USB 3.0 ports.  When using the USB 2.0 port of my keyboard, it worked perfectly.  With the built-in 3.0 ports, no dice.  Kingwa is working with their vendor for updated firmware support.

 

Anyway, just posting this in case some others experience problems with USB 3.0 ports on their Macs before the firmware issues are resolved. =)

post #32 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by xtreme4099 View Post

 

Unfortunately most of us don't have more than a few sources on hand, and often certainly not more than 1 sabre based product, Im not sure if you saw my reply to you in my brief thoughts on the nfb 1.32 in the review section, but based on the design and parts choice id pick the nfb 1.32 or nfb 7.32 if your going with a sabredac, to get most bang for the buck, and considering how spendy the calyx is, id jump on the 3 r-core transformered usb 7.32, its cheaper still.

 

The only other dac i've heard with a sabre chip is the Weiss 202 but it isn't a fair comparison because I've don't readily have access to it, it's a $6500 dac, and i'd be going off auditory memory which is always pretty poor. The one thing i can say about the Weiss' sound that has been said elsewhere is that it is indeed very liquid, analog, and has a rich rounded sound while remaining detailed. I can probably attribute most of this to its robust and excellently designed powersupply regulation and perhaps other good design choices. The sabre 9018 is very sensitive to clean power, Id go with beefiest psu you can find, the 7.32 is a brute force solution, not many designers incorporate the excellent r-core transformers except maybe sony and a handful of other high end manufacturers.

Hi Xtreme 4099

 

First of all, thank you for being so much kind to my attention.

 

I want to share that some dealer of Audio-gd that also has used the Calyx told me that for "my type of speakers" (ribbon tweeter) he suggested that i go with the Calyx with the external PSU that comes with it now, have not heard his reason but i am waiting, also i am very interested on both the NFB 1.32 and 7.32, i think they are excellent DACs specially when i was reading that surpasses the double priced Wadia 121 and that the same dealer told me that is a lot smoother and energetic than M2tech young dac, that seems to says too much about this DAC, i just waiting that the inner me finishes deciding which of the 3 choices will i get...i just want my KInd of "Rush-The Police music" sound clean and energetic in my system. In my experience this kind of music are the most difficult to make it perform in a nice way,in teh other hand: jazz, new age, classic, Diana krall and other are the easiest to listen to with regular system (not fatiguing i mean) just my feelings...

 

Best regards

 

Miki

post #33 of 121

So i picked up a cabledyne usb 2 monocrystal copper cable it made a big improvement on the sound, removed any hardness that was there, but i also found out that the usb32 chip is powered by the dac, which means i was able to electrical tape pin1  5+vdc flat connector portion of the usb cable, the result was a more relaxed, smoother, cleaner, more silent background, loving this thing.


Edited by xtreme4099 - 10/25/12 at 5:01am
post #34 of 121
Thread Starter 

Added a few impressions to this terrific DAC in OP.

post #35 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by allyl View Post

Added a few impressions to this terrific DAC in OP.

 

 

Spot on same impressions i got, the usb cable upgrade with slight mod brought a big jump in sonics, and its usb functionality to me was noticeably superior to either coax or toslink inputs. Live recordings sound ridiculously good. All this did was wet my palate for agd's bigger offerings, as it is this is still a fantastic dac, that has unfortunately flown under the radar of most headfiers hooked on the latest flavor of the month bandwagon.

 

Currently using it with a Lisa 3 headamp from triadaudio.net and modded Fostex T50-RP's :)

post #36 of 121

I have a question to ask of those who have this DAC.  I am looking at this DAC combined with an NFB6.  I was wondering if there are any further impressions on the sound?  The reason I ask is that my previous Sabre-based DAC was a Wyred-4-Sound DAC1, and I found it to be a bit cold, sterile, and have a murky background...almost like a hashy noise..


How is the NFB-1.32 with regards to the background, and does the music flow organically (ie. non-digital sounding)?  Looking forward to more impressions as time goes on.


Edited by kevb - 11/10/12 at 11:42am
post #37 of 121

Just bought NFB-1.32  Today, will put impressions when I receive it and test it =D

post #38 of 121

What will you pair it with?

post #39 of 121

I'll conect it to a laptop or a PS3 with optical conection   and for now with a JVC speaker amplifier ( it has a headphone jack ).   Also I'll conect it through my comp with coaxial output, to my speakers I'll be able to compare it with my modified Asus Xonar Essence ST ( with LME49710HA on buffer and  LME49720HA on I/V ) .

My headphones are Audeze LCD-2 with about 40 hour burn in  and I plan to pair it with a better amp in the future.

post #40 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by mowglycdb View Post

I'll conect it to a laptop or a PS3 with optical conection   and for now with a JVC speaker amplifier ( it has a headphone jack ).   Also I'll conect it through my comp with coaxial output, to my speakers I'll be able to compare it with my modified Asus Xonar Essence ST ( with LME49710HA on buffer and  LME49720HA on I/V ) .

My headphones are Audeze LCD-2 with about 40 hour burn in  and I plan to pair it with a better amp in the future.

 

Your gameplan is set as I can see :D

 

Why not going directly with the USB from the computer? I suspect this would be an improvement over the SPDIF input though I don't know how the ES9018 deals with jitter. It seems to have a pretty advanced built-in digital input stage and jitter reduction mechanism from what I could read in the datasheet but I don't know how it would compare with the DSP-v5 board some other DACs feature. It seems like even the higher-end Audio-gd Sabre-based DACs don't feature the DSP, which make them more affordable. 

post #41 of 121

Only the reference series DAC's have the DSP
 

post #42 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by tme110 View Post

Only the reference series DAC's have the DSP
 

The SA-1 & 2 have it too ;)

 

Was there never a dual WM8741 with DSP?

post #43 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clemmaster View Post

The SA-1 & 2 have it too ;)

 

Was there never a dual WM8741 with DSP?

Only based PCM1704UK DAC from  Audio Gd's  have  DSP as i remember .

post #44 of 121

I did some testing.

 

I conected my ps3 by optical to the DAC and then to an amplifier, the sound is very smooth and more full bodied on my LCD-2, though the bass is a bit boomy, it may be the game that's giving problems, I also noted that the amplifier I'm using is not up to the DAC's standards, because it gave less sounds stage and detail.

 

A strength of the DAC is high frecuency instruments sound more convincing and real ( though in my tests the high frequencies are a bit rolled off) I tested it conecting it to Edifier R1900TIII, I noted inmediatly that it was the jvc amplifier that was producing less detail and more constricted sound stage. The high frecuencies are a bit rolled and I found is that the lower-medium, medium frecuency spectrum was bloated, it may be the sound signature of my speakers anyways. I left the dac running at my home for burnin purpose.  I'll see if it gets better as time passes, but overall I like the sound quality it's giving. Comparing it to Essence ST it's cleary better, the bass is impressive tighter and has more punch, I felt higher frecuency was more ..."airy" on the Essence(positve), more "metalic/artificial" on the Essence (which is negative).

 

¿ Is there a diference applying insulating tape to the +5v active line in usb conectors? I'll give it a try later today.

¿Does the usb cables quality affect much?

 

 

Mow


Edited by mowglycdb - 11/22/12 at 6:14am
post #45 of 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by mowglycdb View Post

I conected my ps3 by optical to the DAC and then to an amplifier, the sound is very smooth and more full bodied on my LCD-2, though the bass is a bit boomy, it may be the game that's giving problems, I also noted that the amplifier I'm using is not up to the DAC's standards, because it gave less sounds stage and detail.

Which DIR module are you using? With the WM8805 my NFB-17 sounded too bloated in the bass and lower mids, and made the rest sound a bit recessed. I changed it to DIR9001 and things levelled out nicely. You might want to try out the built-in SPDIF module in the ES9018.
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