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Teac Reference Line UD-501 USB DAC "DSD" - Page 34

post #496 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moochibond View Post
 

 

My apologies you want a silver one - try here: http://www.head-fi.org/t/787493/teac-ud-501-s


Thanks - I tried there.  The ad is very old, and there was no reply.

 

It seems the silver ones are a little hard to find..

post #497 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by 147JK View Post
 


Thanks - I tried there.  The ad is very old, and there was no reply.

 

It seems the silver ones are a little hard to find..


UD-501, in both black or silver, was on Massdrop a few days ago. worth checking if it's still there ;)

post #498 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by plsvn View Post
 


UD-501, in both black or silver, was on Massdrop a few days ago. worth checking if it's still there ;)


Yeah I saw that.  Unfortunately is was black only.:(  Otherwise I would have picked one up.

post #499 of 510

I see a lot of these for sale in Japan.  Prices seem good, even including shipping.  Does anyone have any experience buying overseas and running a unit like this using a transformer?

post #500 of 510

So I am continuing my mission...

 

Listening impression after Stage 1 (see my previous post):
Much better than stock, a very different animal. Good extension in both bass and treble, nice dynamics and quite detailed. I'm still missing some top-end sparkle, but this might be because I'm quite used to my "reference" device I'm comparing the 501 to. Voices are convincing, although a tad on the unemotional side. Same for accoustic intruments, esp. winds and the like, which could sound more natural and "organic". Yes, I guess that's my main complaint. I'm missing that last bit of emotional-organic-earthy musicality, if you know what I mean. But it's good, no real complaints, and I'm doubting there is any stock device beating this level in a comparable price range.

 

Stage 2.1:
o V+ to V- cap for the 4 Muses + 2 Burson op amps. 6x Vishay MKP 1837 0,1uF

 

This made a surprisingly big change, especially in soundstage depth and width. It's nearly frightening when compared with my reference (of which I'd always thought it had a pretty good soundstage!), how much wider and more open it can become. Details might have increased too.
I hadn't expected this simple change to have that big an effect. I was merely following Burson's tweaking advice and thought why not also for the Muses...
On the other hand, I'm not sure it is taking things too far. When A/B-ing both sources I almost get the feeling of some artificial "wide-stereo" mode. Maybe needs more time to settle down, maybe it's just really good, I don't know.  Whatever, I like the overall sound, which is quite impressive in every sense now.

 

On to a much more expensive change.


Stage 2.2:
o 2x 7812 + 2x 7912 repalced by discrete Dexa UWB regulators
o Wima MKS2 0.47uF/63V for reg output caps (as recommended by Lars/Dexa)
o better mechanical isolation of the transformers (got rid of slight vibrations which were noticeable touching the case/everywhere)

 

 

Now here is where I was hoping for a big change, but hmmm, not really, I don't know. I'm still experimenting with the reg caps, as I think maybe these small MKS2 caps are not that optimal. Or Wima MKS2 are just not suited.

Anyway, sound has changed only slightly and I'm thinking the soundstage shrank back a bit. Also I'm somehow missing punch in the lower region. I have the impression it's not as boomy (in a good way) as it was before, maybe more analytical and a tad brighter. But to be honest, it could all just be my imagination after changing 220uF caps to 0.47uF... :D


I just feel these expensive Dexa regs should have made some dramatic difference, but to my disappointment, I don't hear it. To be fair, the point might actually be that the rest of my equipment is not up to the task. The 501 has gotten pretty good at Stage 2.1, probably the best DAC I've ever had.

As an experiment, I've re-installed the Pana FMs parallel to the small Wima film reg caps. And guess what, the soundstage is back! Also a bit darker overall and I just like it better, I think ;) Maybe there's no change at all... lol


Next experiment is going to be 4,7uF Vishay MKT 1822 for these damn caps, just ordered them. I hope they fit at all...

Also, Stage 3 is coming up - replace the currently JSX-bypassed output Silmic II caps with Jantzen Superior Z. I'm pretty curious how it turns out.


Edited by virtualvoid - 1/13/17 at 12:29am
post #501 of 510

I've got a quick question regarding the XLR outputs.

 

If I'd want to use the XLR outputs and connect them via XLR-Cinch cable to RCA inputs, how would I have to do the XLR pin assignment in this case?

XLR pin 3 floating or shortend to pin 1 (ground)?

 

Thanks!

post #502 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by virtualvoid View Post
 

So I am continuing my mission...

 

Listening impression after Stage 1 (see my previous post):
Much better than stock, a very different animal. Good extension in both bass and treble, nice dynamics and quite detailed. I'm still missing some top-end sparkle, but this might be because I'm quite used to my "reference" device I'm comparing the 501 to. Voices are convincing, although a tad on the unemotional side. Same for accoustic intruments, esp. winds and the like, which could sound more natural and "organic". Yes, I guess that's my main complaint. I'm missing that last bit of emotional-organic-earthy musicality, if you know what I mean. But it's good, no real complaints, and I'm doubting there is any stock device beating this level in a comparable price range.

 

Stage 2.1:
o V+ to V- cap for the 4 Muses + 2 Burson op amps. 6x Vishay MKP 1837 0,1uF

 

This made a surprisingly big change, especially in soundstage depth and width. It's nearly frightening when compared with my reference (of which I'd always thought it had a pretty good soundstage!), how much wider and more open it can become. Details might have increased too.
I hadn't expected this simple change to have that big an effect. I was merely following Burson's tweaking advice and thought why not also for the Muses...
On the other hand, I'm not sure it is taking things too far. When A/B-ing both sources I almost get the feeling of some artificial "wide-stereo" mode. Maybe needs more time to settle down, maybe it's just really good, I don't know.  Whatever, I like the overall sound, which is quite impressive in every sense now.

 

On to a much more expensive change.


Stage 2.2:
o 2x 7812 + 2x 7912 repalced by discrete Dexa UWB regulators
o Wima MKS2 0.47uF/63V for reg output caps (as recommended by Lars/Dexa)
o better mechanical isolation of the transformers (got rid of slight vibrations which were noticeable touching the case/everywhere)

 

 

Now here is where I was hoping for a big change, but hmmm, not really, I don't know. I'm still experimenting with the reg caps, as I think maybe these small MKS2 caps are not that optimal. Or Wima MKS2 are just not suited.

Anyway, sound has changed only slightly and I'm thinking the soundstage shrank back a bit. Also I'm somehow missing punch in the lower region. I have the impression it's not as boomy (in a good way) as it was before, maybe more analytical and a tad brighter. But to be honest, it could all just be my imagination after changing 220uF caps to 0.47uF... :D


I just feel these expensive Dexa regs should have made some dramatic difference, but to my disappointment, I don't hear it. To be fair, the point might actually be that the rest of my equipment is not up to the task. The 501 has gotten pretty good at Stage 2.1, probably the best DAC I've ever had.

As an experiment, I've re-installed the Pana FMs parallel to the small Wima film reg caps. And guess what, the soundstage is back! Also a bit darker overall and I just like it better, I think ;) Maybe there's no change at all... lol


Next experiment is going to be 4,7uF Vishay MKT 1822 for these damn caps, just ordered them. I hope they fit at all...

Also, Stage 3 is coming up - replace the currently JSX-bypassed output Silmic II caps with Jantzen Superior Z. I'm pretty curious how it turns out.

Stage 3 complete?

post #503 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by 147JK View Post
 

I see a lot of these for sale in Japan.  Prices seem good, even including shipping.  Does anyone have any experience buying overseas and running a unit like this using a transformer?

Here: http://www.usaudiomart.com/details/649325716-teac-ud501-dac/

 

:wink_face:

post #504 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moochibond View Post
 

Stage 3 complete?

 

Yay, just put everything finally together, I'll keep it that way, finished. :)

 

 

 

Stage 3:
o 4x Jantzen Superior Z 3,3uF/800V output caps
o remount USB board upside down for these caps to fit
o 4x Vishay MKP 1837 0,01uF output bypass
o 4x Vishay MKT 1822 4,7uF/63V reg output caps
o 4x X7R 0,1uF reg input bypass
o 2x Nichicon FG 100uF/25V headphone output caps (whatever, just had these around...)
o drilled a few ventilation holes above the opamps/regs/transformers

 

So... was it all worth it? Of course! :D
But the second time I'd do a few things differently. Also, when considering the former retail price, which was around twice as much as I've paid for my (new) unit, then I'm not so sure anymore. There might be comparable stock units for the combined price - or there might not be, I don't know. What I do know is that it sounds really nice now, easily the best DAC I've ever heard. But mind you, these haven't been 2k+ ones. Whatever, I'm pretty happy overall!

 

The most stunning feature is the very wide and open soundstage in all directions, combined with some kind of holographic 3D-Sound. It sounds as if the music isn't coming from the speakers anymore, it's just "there". Detail is also very good, very transparent, but without being exceedingly cold and analytical. It's somewhere in between I'd say, definitely not exactly warm and lush sounding. For certain kinds of (badly compressed) music I actually still prefer my old DAC, which is a little more laid-back and probably easier to listen too, even though it's a tad more brighter. The modified Teac can get on my nerves more easily I think, it's certainly not whitewashing anything. And this time it's not just the treble to blame, but the whole spectrum is dissected to fine detail and presented in a direct, holographic manner. It's not too much however, I've heard a few other DACs which I couldn't stand because of their in-your-face sound. I think it's just the right balance here, uncovering bad productions, but really singing when everything fits.


But I have to do some more listening and comparing with my other DAC. These new Stage 3 caps now have 10 hours at most...

Which filter settings do you guys prefer for PCM 44,1KHz?

---

In general I think this DAC is a fantastic deal if you can get it cheap now. Or second hand. Then you do a few mods, maybe some more, pay at most the same price as for the unit itself, and get a great sounding DAC, lots of connections, all in a truely balanced design. There's nothing I can think of to compete with that for this price. And we're speaking maybe $800 in total...

post #505 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by virtualvoid View Post
 

 

Yay, just put everything finally together, I'll keep it that way, finished. :)

 

 

 

Stage 3:
o 4x Jantzen Superior Z 3,3uF/800V output caps
o remount USB board upside down for these caps to fit
o 4x Vishay MKP 1837 0,01uF output bypass
o 4x Vishay MKT 1822 4,7uF/63V reg output caps
o 4x X7R 0,1uF reg input bypass
o 2x Nichicon FG 100uF/25V headphone output caps (whatever, just had these around...)
o drilled a few ventilation holes above the opamps/regs/transformers

 

So... was it all worth it? Of course! :D
But the second time I'd do a few things differently. Also, when considering the former retail price, which was around twice as much as I've paid for my (new) unit, then I'm not so sure anymore. There might be comparable stock units for the combined price - or there might not be, I don't know. What I do know is that it sounds really nice now, easily the best DAC I've ever heard. But mind you, these haven't been 2k+ ones. Whatever, I'm pretty happy overall!

 

The most stunning feature is the very wide and open soundstage in all directions, combined with some kind of holographic 3D-Sound. It sounds as if the music isn't coming from the speakers anymore, it's just "there". Detail is also very good, very transparent, but without being exceedingly cold and analytical. It's somewhere in between I'd say, definitely not exactly warm and lush sounding. For certain kinds of (badly compressed) music I actually still prefer my old DAC, which is a little more laid-back and probably easier to listen too, even though it's a tad more brighter. The modified Teac can get on my nerves more easily I think, it's certainly not whitewashing anything. And this time it's not just the treble to blame, but the whole spectrum is dissected to fine detail and presented in a direct, holographic manner. It's not too much however, I've heard a few other DACs which I couldn't stand because of their in-your-face sound. I think it's just the right balance here, uncovering bad productions, but really singing when everything fits.


But I have to do some more listening and comparing with my other DAC. These new Stage 3 caps now have 10 hours at most...

Which filter settings do you guys prefer for PCM 44,1KHz?

---

In general I think this DAC is a fantastic deal if you can get it cheap now. Or second hand. Then you do a few mods, maybe some more, pay at most the same price as for the unit itself, and get a great sounding DAC, lots of connections, all in a truely balanced design. There's nothing I can think of to compete with that for this price. And we're speaking maybe $800 in total...

 

Looks sweet, great job VV!

 

And great write up, reads like you have hit that sweet spot, I would love to have a listen!

 

Thanks for sharing :beerchug:

post #506 of 510
Guys I'm hoping someone can help me here. I just bought this DAC and set it up per the instructions. It keeps locking up any media player I try to play music out of. I'm pulling my hair out.
1) installed the latest drivers first
2) installed the Teac hr player
3) plugged in everything (teac to Pc via USB, teac to amplifier via RCA)
4) turned on the PC.
5) once PC was in the desktop I turned on the DAC
6) checked control panel and the Teac audio device was there
7) I made sure that foobar, winamp both see teac as the audio device
8) the DAC connects via USB
9) RCA out is selected, upconversion I've switched between on and off but it makes no difference it still locks up
10) filter set to sharp or even off but no difference in resolving issues
11) on rare occasion foobar will play the song for a second but then go completely silent and freeze

I'm playing WAV files. Also once any of my media player locks up I can't even do a complete shutdown or restart of the PC as something is hindering the process. So I have to do a forced power down by holding the power button. Please help!!!
Edited by CyberAthlete - 2/14/17 at 8:50pm
post #507 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moochibond View Post
 

New UD-501 owner here. Had the unit for approx. 10 days.

 

The DAC section is an improvement over the DAC it replaces, the Arcam Rdac. 

 

The headphone amp section is not as good as my Schiit Lyr (with 75 SW/SS Reflektor).

 

IMO the headphone amp lets this unit down. It is weak, using the headphone out music sounds flat/less detailed/compacted/digital.

 

The Lyr adds life, organic/real quality, body, detail, soundstage and air. 

 

This set up pairs well with Audeze LCD 2(F) 2015v

 

Update...had the 501 for approx. 2 months now the headphone amp is absolutely acceptable. Don't know if it was brain burn in or whatever but upon further listening the Lyr was (to my ear) very slightly better in some areas and very slightly worse in others.

Decided to sell the Lyr and used the money to buy a second set of cans (HD 800), which I think pair really well with the 501 :beerchug: 

post #508 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moochibond View Post
 

 

Update...had the 501 for approx. 2 months now the headphone amp is absolutely acceptable. Don't know if it was brain burn in or whatever but upon further listening the Lyr was (to my ear) very slightly better in some areas and very slightly worse in others.

Decided to sell the Lyr and used the money to buy a second set of cans (HD 800), which I think pair really well with the 501 :beerchug: 

 

good call. you can also improve the headamp by changing the op amps which drive that stage.

post #509 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by CyberAthlete View Post

Guys I'm hoping someone can help me here. I just bought this DAC and set it up per the instructions. It keeps locking up any media player I try to play music out of. I'm pulling my hair out.
1) installed the latest drivers first
2) installed the Teac hr player
3) plugged in everything (teac to Pc via USB, teac to amplifier via RCA)
4) turned on the PC.
5) once PC was in the desktop I turned on the DAC
6) checked control panel and the Teac audio device was there
7) I made sure that foobar, winamp both see teac as the audio device
8) the DAC connects via USB
9) RCA out is selected, upconversion I've switched between on and off but it makes no difference it still locks up
10) filter set to sharp or even off but no difference in resolving issues
11) on rare occasion foobar will play the song for a second but then go completely silent and freeze

I'm playing WAV files. Also once any of my media player locks up I can't even do a complete shutdown or restart of the PC as something is hindering the process. So I have to do a forced power down by holding the power button. Please help!!!

 

You've probably got some software conflict on your PC or your DAC is faulty. Can you try it on another PC or mac? Make sure your DAC is not faulty first, although even a faulty dac shouldn't cause your pc to hang like that.

post #510 of 510
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moochibond View Post
 

Here: http://www.usaudiomart.com/details/649325716-teac-ud501-dac/

 

:wink_face:

 

haven't bought from there. I'm pretty sure the 501 has a voltage board inside for setting the voltage. It uses wired jumpers which have to be removed and replaced.

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