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Audio-Gd Master 7 - Discrete Fully Balanced DAC (PCM1704)

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by darknightdk, Sep 3, 2012.
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  1. JaMo
    Congrats! Usb upgrade to Amanero or Xmos will make wonders..
  2. DACLadder
    Congrats and you did really well. FIrst I heard about the optical module voltage difference. I personally never use it. The Singxer SU-1 sounds very good with the M7 type DAcs. ANd I upgraded to the Amanero USB module with I did my DSP board swap.
  3. DACLadder
    And I use the external Channel Island +5V supply for USB power. It makes excellent +5V power source. I have a Transient Mk. II as well and maybe I should give it a try again!
  4. blackcatSVK
    Just found out my M7 is the previous gen with USB32, not the singularity one.
    Anyone can enlighten me what is the different?
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2018
  5. mivarpet
    The current Master 7 Singularity has a completely different digital / DSP (central) board and revised DAC boards (left & right). You can upgrade your Master 7 by replacing the digital board (disassembly and soldering required) and still get a worthwhile improvement as the preceding pages in this forum testify.
    blackcatSVK likes this.
  6. DACLadder
    As stated the Singularity 7 modernizes the old Master 7 design and is a huge upgrade. The new DSP/ input board provides lower jitter performance, new DSP filters/ modes, and added capabilities for the inputs like faster sampling rates accepted. It is the same DSP design that AGD uses in their flagship R2R 7. There were also some small tweaks as well for the S7 analog boards to improve clarity and lower distortion. USB32 held back the M7 performance and thankfully the replacement Amanero USB board vastly improves sound quality and performance. Most everyone seems to agree the M7 improves dramatically when the DSP board is replaced.

    But backing up a bit... the older Master 7 DSP board firmware can be updated to the 2016 version which gets a lot of thumbs up as very noticeable improvement. If you haven't upgraded the M7 DSP firmware to that would version maybe you can start there. And getting rid of USB32 eventually will vastly help performance. Whether new firmware or old the M7 always sounded best with HDMI I2S. And even with the SIngularity DSP I prefer HDMI I2S but now much less variation in sound quality between inputs compared to the older model.

    Info on the S7...
    http://www.audio-gd.com/Master/Singularity 7/Singularity 7EN.htm
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2018
  7. blackcatSVK
    Thank you so much for the infor.
    Could you please direct me to the upgrading guide? There is no official guide yet from AudioGD, and I cannot find any related information.
    How much the upgraded parts would cost? I can do soldering job myself.
  8. DACLadder
  9. blackcatSVK
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2018
  10. DACLadder
    The price is very affordable if you are considering buying a new DAC. I spent more recently on a headphone cable. I purchased the SIngularity 7 and have since sold my Yggy and MSB Analog DAC. That is the level of performance change I am hearing. The M7 DSP upgrade vs S7 differences are minor in comparison (but noticeable).
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2018
  11. xrobbo
    Hi everybody, I own a M7 already upgraded to the NOS7, that I use through the i2s port. In my condition, would you still say that upgrading to the Singularity would make a really significant sound improvement?
  12. DACLadder
    Look back in this thread through the summer 2017 (July, August) as you will see impressions of the DSP board change. I don't know about NOS performance but the new DSP can be jumpered OS or NOS mode. The original M7 was very bassy, sibilant with vocals, and vague on soundstage - all helped with the 2016 old DSP firmware release. The new DSP corrects all this with better/ tighter bass that is not bloated, much improved vocals, less glare in lower trebles, and better soundstaging. And much more low level detail with either the S7 or upgraded M7S. It is like night and day differences that you can notice immediately. I have always like the M7 and S7 as their sounds are more dynamic versus other DACs. May not be perfect but they sound like music and very engaging.

    Whether you should upgrade I don't know but I am so glad I did. I'm sure others will comment as well.
  13. Pablovila
    Hi: I have the original Master 7 and I am thinking in upgrading, but I have a doubt: what is the difference between the Singularity and the new flagship R2R 7? Thanks.
  14. DACLadder
    The new R2R 7 DAC uses discreet resistor ladder DACs where the Master 7 employs Burr-Brown PCM1704 DAC chips. The 1704s are no longer available. So, AGD has been releasing a lot of new models based upon Kingwa’s resistor DAC design.

    Haven’t heard the R2R 7 but would very much like to have that pleasure. Happy with the Singularity 7. Getting a lot of mileage out of that DAC.
  15. macrog
    Has anyone compared the R2R 7 with the singularity 7?
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