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JKenny Audio Ciúnas DAC and Ciúnas SPDIF - Page 18

post #256 of 595
The Idling Process

If a Black Gate capacitor mounted on an electronic device is actuated, a signal current flows into it and the electrodes are gradually activated, reducing non-linear distortion and phase distortion substantially while improving the efficiency of power transfer efficiency.

The time required for this process varies widely with the capacity, voltage and signal level a total of about 30 hours is the standard level.

Once this process of idling is completed. The effect continues as long as the capacitor Is kept at the same place and the operating environment does not undergo a substantial change. The effect of idling has been proved with all types of electronic equipment - analogue, digital, high-frequency and other devices.

It must be noted that idling is different from ageing, which applies a direct current voltage without giving signals.

This was quoted from the link attached.
http://www.octave-electronics.com/Parts/cap/bg_tech.shtml
Edited by Happy Camper - 7/1/13 at 1:43pm
post #257 of 595
So I read something today on the HDTracks site that I never heard before. It was a primer to computer audio that said importing music files from a USB external hard drive while simultaneously exporting the music though a USB DAC is not a good idea. Basically it's not good to use USB ports for input and output. Use FireWire or thunderbolt HDs instead of USB. Thoughts?
post #258 of 595

If they're using the same USB bus, maybe not.  If you have a dedicated USB card like the SOtM PCIe card it should be OK.  I import over my network then export through USB to the converter / DAC.

post #259 of 595

Here's the article:

 

https://www.hdtracks.com/files/ComputerAudio_Demystified.pdf

 

I guess the issue is I'm using a early 2009 Mac Mini as my music server. I store my files on a G-Drive external HD. I'm using iTunes and PureMusic for playback. When I select a song to play it gets it from my external drive via USB. It is playing it back though USB into my Ciunas. On page 12 of the article it states that doing it this way "significantly reduces performance". 

 

My Mini has 5 USB 2.0 (480Mbps) ports and 1 Firewire port (800Mbps). It does not support USB 3.0. 

 

My question is, am I losing performance the way I'm connected now? If so, I guess I need a Firewire capable external HD. Not many of those around any more since USB 3.0 is faster. 

post #260 of 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by alancohen View Post

So I read something today on the HDTracks site that I never heard before. It was a primer to computer audio that said importing music files from a USB external hard drive while simultaneously exporting the music though a USB DAC is not a good idea. Basically it's not good to use USB ports for input and output. Use FireWire or thunderbolt HDs instead of USB. Thoughts?

I've done some personal experiments and for the life of me can't hear any difference whether I'm playing off a external hard-drive or the internal SSD of my laptop. The audiophile in me prefers playing directly from my laptop SSD as there is one less wire my music goes through, but then I wonder because I can't hear any audible differences, at least from my laptop and my external hard drive. I think it's easy enough to experiment. Duplicate the file and try A/B back and forth to see if you can hear any difference.

post #261 of 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by alancohen View Post

My question is, am I losing performance the way I'm connected now?

 

None what so ever.

post #262 of 595
I agree with M-13. Best way is experiment yourself. If you don't hear a difference, no problem. If you do, tell us!

I just skimmed the article. It's a nice, informative overview - I learnt some new things and plan to read it properly - but also indulges in purple prose ("staggering qualitative difference"). It offers not a shred of evidence for these stronger claims. I have no problem with 'six out of 10 audiophiles heard a worthwhile difference when we changed X' - it's a reasonable metric in a hobby like ours.

But writing like this makes me suspect the statements are deductions from an untested 'theory'. Sure they follow from their premises, but are the premises true?!

Back on topic, I've 99.9% decided to order the Ciunas dac within the next 2-3 weeks. Unlike HC, Preproman, Shahrose and others I have no top-end DACs to compare, but have a reasonable stable of four mid-rangers I have carefully reviewed in the past. On fact, three are set up right now as part of an pre/post-bifrost uber comparison. I look forward to checking out the Ciunas.
post #263 of 595
You guys know we can't use hearing to determine differences. It's not going to pass muster with the science crowd. It has to be measured.

Now AiDee, the definition of "Top End" is a slippery slope. There are a plethora of DACs that would put our paltry DACs into the mid fi category. Since I have not the calibrated lab in which to do a through analysis, my hearing opinion is only worth a shot of cheap tequila in the discussion of said topic without salt or lemon. wink.gif
post #264 of 595

Correct - no top end DACs here.  Only mid-fi - I guess.  Who knows these days.

 

I want to confirm:  No need for the 5V power leg in the USB cable when using with the Ciunas - correct?

post #265 of 595
biggrin.gif

As I wrote that it did strike me the PWDs et al. are hardly 'top end' I guess, compared to $40,000 dacs eek.gif

(start of rave - may be TL; DR)

The interesting thing about the 'science' crowd is that it isn't science. As far as I was able to determine during a deeply unsatisfactory year or so combing those forums. Those that proclaimed scientific principles and 'facts' the loudest seemed in general to have no idea that Aristotle's science (deductively based) gave way to Galileo (hey, how about we perform the experiment to check whether our deduction from current theory actually works? Before we say anything?) many centuries ago tongue.gif

A good deal of my scientific work includes measurement of ambiguous stimuli, similar to what we on head-fi use our ears for smily_headphones1.gif Reliable metrics with good predictive validity are routinely developed in many scientific fields. That the listening we do as audiophiles might also have real validity seems supported by anecdotal evidence that we can meaningfully share impressions and find we frequently agree. I haven't tried to model this statistically; there would be ethical and other issues to setting up a real study on head-fi. (But a simulation to test assumptions is a real possibility). The other frequent gripe - poor aural memory - is true as far as it goes but ignores real-world fact about how memory actually works (chunking and the role of language).

As a statistician as well as researcher my best guess is the agreement occurs well above chance and with good 'effect size'.

In other words, there is a point to head-fi and its reviews such as yours (HC, Prep et al), Purrin's group, Project86's, Skylab's and others. We're not just a social club after all wink.gif

(end of rave)

Sorry for the O.T. - er, where was I?
post #266 of 595

^ Couldn't have said it better AiDee.

 

A few additions about the Ciunas. If I were to really scrutinize its sound, I'd say it could use some liquidity in the mids and render a larger soundstage. I still think it plays in the same league as the PWD MK2 and Ref7.1 (with the Ciunas converter). The PWD is the lushest, most coloured of the three, and also the most liquid. I just don't like its congested sound. The Ref has the largest, most immersive sound (also the least fatiguing). The Ciunas is the most neutral (though erring very slightly towards the brighter/leaner side because of its tendency towards dryness rather than tubey wetness).

post #267 of 595

Oh and about the Ciunas converter. Time's in short supply, so I haven't had a chance to really compare. What I can safely say is that it's better than the MK3 JKSPDIF and really closes the gap between it and the OR5 maxed. The latter is still better for transient response, texture and soundstage, but IMO, not enough to warrant the $2000 extra cost.

post #268 of 595
Yes, I agreed. Ciunas is better than mk3. More effortless and better presentation. I'm curious how it compare with offramp though.
post #269 of 595
Nice, useful notes Shahrose.

Also good to know the Ciunas converter approaches and gets close to the OR5.
post #270 of 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post

Correct - no top end DACs here.  Only mid-fi - I guess.  Who knows these days.

I want to confirm:  No need for the 5V power leg in the USB cable when using with the Ciunas - correct?
Correct. Power and sound separate. USB charger cable for 5v from USB port comes with or use a separate 5v power supply off the mains, which is what I do. Unless being used portably, the Cuinas should remain powered at all times. That requires either computer sleep mode or a separate PS.
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