Thanks for the response again. I went ahead and ordered a Tobby. HiDef has them at a irresistible price right now. The USB on the W4S DAC 2 is its weakest link, so I am looking forward to ordering some more op-amps and experimenting with Tobby's USB. I know it's USB will sound better than the W4S (unless an Audiophilleo is used, i.e.), and it will be interesting to see how it stacks up against the Keces.
REVIEW: Firestone Audio Tobby DAC - Page 7
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Thanks! Yeah, I'm excited about it! I would really like to try the Dexa and/or the Burson op-amps in this unit and my Keces. From those that have used these there seems to be a consensus that they are simply no better sounding op-amps. Here's a link to a reviewer that has used them among other op-amps. Really interesting read.
I thought about going down this same road, and even emailed Burson. Two big problems with discrete op amps, though: (1) Size - there is no way to fit six Bursons in the Tobby without building a custom case. Each Burson unit is pretty big and the Tobby is not huge. As John's excellent photos show, you need to install three for each channel (total six) in tight configuration. And I'm not even including the seventh opamp for the SE output. The smaller Dexa units might work. Do let me know if you go the Dexa route. (2) Cost - the Bursons are 70-90 bucks a unit. So you are looking at a $420-540 upgrade. Worth it? Maybe if they are fit nice and snug in the case, but that's not going to happen, unfortunately. I'm not sure what the Dexa opamps cost. Do let me know if you find a supplier. As a result, I'm more interested in any possible audible upgrades to be had from normal silicon op amps. They cost a fraction of the discrete units, and fit easily onto the existing board.
Edited by tvolpe1600 - 11/14/13 at 9:44am
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I've never had much luck with those types. I believe the Burson units are just rebadged Audio GD, though I can't remember if they use the Sun or Moon or what. But every time I've tried those types, the result is terrible. Not just "well, it's not worth the price" but literally terrible. I'd skip it, for the hassle and cost but also the potential performance hit compared to the stock opamps.
Tvolpe1600, my favorite op-amps so far, at least with the Keces, are the LME49720NA's . Actually, I go back and forth between those and the LME49990’s which are more detailed, but overall not quite as fat and rich sounding. I just ordered 7 of the LME49720’s to try in the Tobby. From Arrow.com they are 1.78 ea. for a total of 12.46 for all 7. Not bad considering the price of the Dexa’s and Bursons, lol
The dimensions of Bursons are 39mm x 23mm x 29mm (1.5” x .9” x 1.15”) I don’t how much room is inside the Tobby. I will have to open it when it gets here to see. They do make a 4” op-amp extention cable http://bursonaudio.com/DIY_HD_Opamp.htm. If the Bursons had to lie on their sides to fit I think I would use something like Rubbermaid Rubber Shelf Liner to isolate the components. Also, the holes in the shelf liner would let heat escape….just an idea. If you had to go external with these I think mounting them inside a clear Plexiglas cube would be pretty cool. I don’t think it would be that hard to do. Container World might have something. I would have to find out how long the extension cables for the op-amps could be before there was any signal degradation in the event they needed to be extended outside the Tobby's chasis. Between the descriptions I’ve read of the sound of the Dexa’s vs the Burson’s I lean towards the Bursons.
They are many who praise both of these op-amps. But you’re right……the prices definitely have a WOW factor! I have an email into Burson right now to get a price on the single op-amps as that is what the Keces takes and fortunately only two of them! I might try as an experiment to replace the two op-amps in the Keces with the Bursons just to test the change in sound. Based on that I may, or may not, get brave enough to spring for 6-7 of the doubles for the Bursons. I know this will be a tremendous expense. I would definitely have to that some thought for sure.
Has anyone been able to install the driver for the Windows 8.0 64 bit from the link below? I tried and it stated that it was only for a long list of windows but Win 8 was not on the list.
Yeah you're right. The issue was that Firestone has a couple websites and I couldn't find it on the first couple that I found on Google. The drivers can be found here for those looking in the future: http://www.firestone-audio.com/fsa_services/fsa_services_driverdownload.html
They have an instructional thing on their Facebook page, but it's in Chinese: http://www.facebook.com/notes/fsafirestone-audio-%E9%9B%BB%E5%85%89%E7%81%AB%E7%9F%B3/windows8-and-81-tobby-%E6%88%96%E6%98%AF-bluekey%E7%9A%84%E9%A9%85%E5%8B%95%E7%A8%8B%E5%BC%8F%E5%AE%89%E8%A3%9D%E6%95%99%E5%AD%B8/742695949080723
I need some help. The Tobby arrived today, so needless to say I'm pretty excited. However, for hours now, I have been trying to download the driver. Wow, an install disk sure would have been nice!! I went to the driver download page at http://www.firestone-audio.eu/shop/drivers/index.php. and downloaded the driver for the Tobby. But I cannot get it to open. I have tried every software resident on my computer that I think apples Windows wants to know what file the driver was created with. How would I know that? I downloaded izarc zip but that doesn't open it either. As I stated, download is complete. I just need to know how to open it? I have tired with Windows 7 Ulitimate 64bit and another computer that has Windows 7 Professional 32bit. Both to no avail, What am I doing wrong here?
I also tried this site but also with no luck: http://www.firestone-audio.com/fsa_services/fsa_services_driverdownload.html
This what you need to do.
1. Download/Install 7zip.
2. Open the 7zip software and go to the directory that you have the downloaded folder.
3. Right click on the folder and select the first which is 7-zip. A drop down menu appears.
4. Select 'Extract Here'. It will decompress into a folder.
Note - these drivers go from Windows XP to Windows 7. Does not include Windows 8 drivers in this folder.
Welcome. Glad to be of help. I know what it is like to post and getting no resolution to my query.
Edited by ULUL - 11/16/13 at 9:55am