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post #61 of 99

This was an enjoyable thread to read.  The opinions by each contributor were thought out and well received.  

 

smoothlondoner, I wish you luck in finding your next DAC. I am going to be following your journey.

 

conlinharding, every one of your comments are pleasant to read and they have answered questions that my subconscious has yet to ask.  You made me realize more about my taste in music reproduction.  Thank you for that.  I've heard numerous systems in the last few years especially at two RMAF (2009 and 2012).  The overly transparent sound you have been describing makes me think about what I am listening to preventing me from hearing what it is being played.  Sidney Deane describes what I am getting at, "...you can listen to Jimi but you can't hear him.  There's a difference man.  Just because you're listening to him doesn't mean you're hearing him."  

 

It was the Quad 2905 that made me fall in love with Hi-Fi sound.  It's imaging and realism they can create are undeniable.  However, to this day, I don't perceive "the colors", I prefer, in the sound ESLs produce.  You explained it wonderfully in an earlier post which I have included here:.  

 

"You've been given a canvas with a sketch on it, if you want to paint it neutrally with just one color then fine, just as well you can paint it all white and bright yellow for a harsh grating effect, but I prefer a pallet of expression.  Van Gogh didn't get there with a paint by numbers kit and nor should you, he observed his emotional responses to real life experiences and painted them with equal amounts of saturation.  Let you equipment get in the way, let it move you, after all; isn't that what music is made for?"

 

All this time I have believed ESLs to be the epitome of speaker technology but I am now rethinking that.  They "snap" and "sparkle" and "decay" unlike any other but I don't ever see myself closing my eyes and losing myself in a far-off, distant place like I do with more "colored" speakers.  You're a cool dude Colin.

 

P.S.  I heard the Stax-009 and I think those are the bomb!  My comments are strictly confined to the home audio realm.   atsmile.gifpopcorn.gif

post #62 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by smoothlondoner View Post

Another quick though colin what do you think of the Musical fidelity tri vista sacd that doubles as a dac.

One has come up with an ailing transport but I would just be interested in the dac side at the moment any ways and could fix the transport at a later date if necessary.

 

I was never a fan of any Musical Fidelity gear, as I said previously; working in a local HiFi shop when I was much younger, MF gear represented the majority of traded in components.  People either had purchased it elsewhere or it had broken and in either case were not pleased with the sound so they moved onto something else.  I'm not trying to extrapolate my experience onto the MF owner's population at large, just recounting my own dealings with the equipment.  I've heard a fair few of their components (from the trade-ins) and they are nice but nothing to write home about, very HiFi sounding hence their well reviewed status.  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post

Very good post, colinharding. I tend to agree all around, but particularly about the all-embracing search for detail. People yadder yadder on here through thread after thread about this or that phone having more detail than another, but I've no doubt at all that much of that detail comes from exaggerated, spiky treble. The fact is, live music is not all about detail. I'm into classical/orchestral music and infrequently atttend concerts, and there are two things that strike me each time I go: the lack of treble compared to most headphones, and the lack of detail. The balance of live music (at least, heard from a reasonable distance--if you want to sit among the instruments that's your business) is just very different from what we've come to accept as a good sounding headphone. We seem to be obsessed with articulating and separating every note so as to hear it with bell-like clarity, all at the expense of the flow of the music--the musicality of the music. I think it's time those who are seriously pursuing hi-fi as an ultimate goal (as opposed to those who just want a "fun phone", which is fine) stand back and take a hard look at the direction they're heading in. They might get a shock at how far they've strayed from the path.  

 

Thanks for the kind words!  I'm glad you agree though, it has taken me a while to get here but now that I've gotten past "HiFi bug" I've really started to enjoy some music.  

post #63 of 99
Thread Starter 

Cheers,

I've put an offer in for a meridian 563 so with any luck i'll get that and see where we go from there.

post #64 of 99
Thread Starter 

if this falls through what are the 

BEL CANTO DAC 3 like?

post #65 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by tf1216 View Post

This was an enjoyable thread to read.  The opinions by each contributor were thought out and well received.  

 

smoothlondoner, I wish you luck in finding your next DAC. I am going to be following your journey.

 

conlinharding, every one of your comments are pleasant to read and they have answered questions that my subconscious has yet to ask.  You made me realize more about my taste in music reproduction.  Thank you for that.  I've heard numerous systems in the last few years especially at two RMAF (2009 and 2012).  The overly transparent sound you have been describing makes me think about what I am listening to preventing me from hearing what it is being played.  Sidney Deane describes what I am getting at, "...you can listen to Jimi but you can't hear him.  There's a difference man.  Just because you're listening to him doesn't mean you're hearing him."  

 

It was the Quad 2905 that made me fall in love with Hi-Fi sound.  It's imaging and realism they can create are undeniable.  However, to this day, I don't perceive "the colors", I prefer, in the sound ESLs produce.  You explained it wonderfully in an earlier post which I have included here:.  

 

"You've been given a canvas with a sketch on it, if you want to paint it neutrally with just one color then fine, just as well you can paint it all white and bright yellow for a harsh grating effect, but I prefer a pallet of expression.  Van Gogh didn't get there with a paint by numbers kit and nor should you, he observed his emotional responses to real life experiences and painted them with equal amounts of saturation.  Let you equipment get in the way, let it move you, after all; isn't that what music is made for?"

 

All this time I have believed ESLs to be the epitome of speaker technology but I am now rethinking that.  They "snap" and "sparkle" and "decay" unlike any other but I don't ever see myself closing my eyes and losing myself in a far-off, distant place like I do with more "colored" speakers.  You're a cool dude Colin.

 

P.S.  I heard the Stax-009 and I think those are the bomb!  My comments are strictly confined to the home audio realm.   atsmile.gifpopcorn.gif

 

tf1216, I really appreciate your comments and I'm doing my best to help smoothlondoner along here.  If you have a pair of ESLs (the 57s were my favorite, two stacked on each side) then you have a very good head start.  For a lot of people that is the end all be all speaker and for a lot of reasons I can agree with that sentiment, they are smooth, wonderfully rich with vocals, and dynamic.  However they never did it for me when it came to Santana or Hendrix.  But for voices, perfect, absolutely perfect.  There are a few Western drivers I prefer over the 57s, but the prices are astronomical in comparison.  Just make sure you don't feed them more than thirty watts haha, I've lost a couple that way.  I really like that quote by Sidney Deane, very true statement.  

 

I'll tell you a secret, for under $1000 you can have a system that will do everything I'm describing --- it just won't look pretty.  Pick up a pair of Dynaco A25 speakers with an Acrosound 2020, Eico HF-30, HF-50, Pilot EL84, Dynaco ST-35, etc and use your preamp of choice.  Those speakers are a spectacular find (they are plentiful on ebay but people haven't grasped their quality yet so the prices are still reasonable), SEAS drivers (same as Audio Note), alnico magnets, phenolic tweeter, I'm willing to bet you would find this system to be at the very sonic core of what you are craving.  It won't be as detailed, not as spacious, not as transient, as what you are used to, but it will be tonally correct, three dimensionally realistic, emotionally unparalleled, and real. The system I've put together above is just the price of admission, once through the doors there's plenty of gear to satiate your audio needs...you just need to know where to look.  Anyway, lets keep that secret between us wink_face.gif

 

What gear did you hear the Stax-009 with? Impressions biggrin.gif


Edited by colinharding - 10/17/12 at 9:15pm
post #66 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by smoothlondoner View Post

Cheers,

I've put an offer in for a meridian 563 so with any luck i'll get that and see where we go from there.

 

Not sure if I answered you previously but I want to say that I last paid 500 for one of those, it has been a while (2 years?) though so prices may have fluctuated since then.

 


Quote:
Originally Posted by smoothlondoner View Post

if this falls through what are the 

BEL CANTO DAC 3 like?

 

It's very nice, it can be a little tame sounding when compared to the Matrix but a very cohesive unit.  If you've ever listened to Cambridge audio, it has the same signature, warm, dynamic, smooth sound.  But the Bel Canto is so much more refined.  I would venture far enough to say that it is the best all solid state DAC I've heard and is right below the Matrix if I had to pick something else.  There is nothing dreadfully wrong with the unit but by the same token I'm not blown away by its sound.  Certainly better than the Meridian, but not by an overwhelming amount.  You certainly won't be disappointed though, it has a wonderful sense of realism.

post #67 of 99
Thread Starter 

Well I guess i'll just wait and see what the prices are like and make a decision from there.

cheers Colin,

James

post #68 of 99
Thread Starter 

typical, the bloke selling the meridian 566 has had a channel go out on his cd player so he's not selling the meridian at the mo.

Got a line on a 563 though so watch this space.....

post #69 of 99

Oh well, definitely let us know when you get the 563! Or any other DAC for that matter

post #70 of 99

Hiya,

What is your source? I can't work it out. You'll never get decent audio through SPDIF hence the importance

David
 

post #71 of 99
Thread Starter 

My source is

A PC front end built to hi spec with 32gb of ram, 8 core processor and 4 hard drives in raid 0 & a 1200w power supply to keep the sound free from other interference and stable.

The sound is taken from the pc buy spdif coaxial from an Asus xonar essence ST one of the best cards on the market.

I am also in the process of building an exteranl power supply for it so it gets fed all clean dc with plenty of head room.

From there it goes to a Cyrus Audio DACX+ which also has the Cyrus PSX R external power supply also.

From there it goes to 

1.) An AVI Legacy S21 intergrated Amp connected to spendor A6's

2.)Also to a Headphone Amp a copy of the beyerdynamicA1 called a YSA1 (see the link below) then in to a pair of beyerdynamic T1's

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Finished-High-quality-YS-A1-Headphone-AMP-Amplifier-with-full-aluminum-chassis-/120923229333?pt=UK_Sound_Vision_Other&hash=item1c27960c95.

Interconnects are 

Coaxial cable    - Wireworld Starlight6

Interconnects    - 1mm solid core OFC soft copper in oversized teflon jackets & locking rca plugs

Speaker cables - 10AWG solid core OFC Soft Copper

post #72 of 99

My dac experience is limited to the W4S dac 2 and the Nad M51. The Nad is fantastic for the money. It has a wide sound stage deeper base and smooth treble. The one thing that I have not seen in any review that I find the Nad has and the W4S did not is the front to back sound stage like 3d.

post #73 of 99
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the NAD post/suggestion.

What do you think of the NAD Colin???

post #74 of 99

Here is a quote from the Stereophile review of the NAD M51,

 

"But this album is a torture chamber of tangled bass, and I sensed a very slight thickening compared to the Benchmark. Or perhaps the Benchmark was a touch too thin . . . ?"

 

I think that just about sums it up.  It will be "a touch" more musical than the Benchmark but man that isn't saying much.

post #75 of 99
Thread Starter 

ok then!

We'll give that a miss :)

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