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Audio GD NFB-11.28 vs R2R 11

Discussion in 'Dedicated Source Components' started by crowally, Aug 17, 2017.
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  1. RojasTKD
    Thanks for the confirmation!

    I think I can live with the "pops". I've read mixed reports of it happening or when using an input other than USB. I plan to use USB 2.0 as it's said to minimize the pops, at least for some.

    I also have a iDSD Black Lable so having a DAC/Amp doesn't mute the start of songs will be nice. :)
  2. ctaxxxx
    I'm a little interested in trying this. I had a question though. When I did some researching, I saw there are power conditioners that do the same thing (reduce EMI / RFI interference). You think this would be a better investment if using multiple audio equipment? I'm assuming that would mean I could use the stock cable for these devices as well, as opposed to buying multiple high-end power cables. If anyone has such a thing, your input would also be much appreciated.
  3. phthora
    Power conditioners smooth out spikes in voltages (including surge protection), and even out the flow of electricity to be as consistent as possible (something like 60hz/120V/15A); power cables (good ones) shield the electricity in the cable from producing EMI/RFI simply through the passage of electricity, however "clean," noise that can be picked up by sensitive equipment. So, they do different work. The benefits of each are hotly contested, but in my opinion they each provide enough benefit to the sound and safety of equipment to be worth a modest investment. A Pangea power cable that demonstrably produces no EMF can be purchased for $50.
  4. ctaxxxx
    I might just go with the Pangea cable, since some additional research suggest more expensive power conditioners would only make a difference (like $1000+!!). Was only looking to spend around $50 lol.

    Last question before I buy. My digital source goes like this:
    • Surface Pro 4 --> USB Hub --> Sound Blaster X7 --optical out--> R2R 11
    I use the X7 for it's DSP mainly. Would buying the power cable for only the R2R 11 still make a difference? Would I need it for the X7 as well, even though it uses a AC/DC adapter?

    I just realized this is starting to get a little complicated... FYI, I also just bought a new USB hub (60W) since the old one (15W) kept cutting out. Maybe this is all I really need...
  5. phthora
    Furman makes a very reasonably price power conditioner, about $150. Considering that a decent power strip/surge protector can run $50, I think the price is very good. Surge protection in some form is a must, as are additional outlets given your set-up.

    The effects of the EMF produced by a poorly shielded power cord will have the most effect on the signals of other ports. So, for example, if you have a power cable plugged in right next to the USB input or RCAs, it can cause an audible buzzing. On the other end, the headphone port is usually far enough away that it won't be effected, but that relies on a number of things, including the quality of the cable, distance, and the amount of power going through the cable. Anyway, you should get the most benefit by replacing the power cord closest to the inputs and with the most power running through it. The R2R 11, in other words. The X7 might need one also, but your ears will tell you if that is the case. My guess is that distance between the X7 and R2R should alleviate any effects from the X7's power cable.
    ctaxxxx likes this.
  6. tauceti
    but I will loose DSD support only with Eitr as Eitr doesn't support it. With other usb -> coax devices it may work?
  7. gLer
    I’m not sure, possibly. Not many DACs can do DSD over coax. Schitt just doesn’t support DSD at all for some strange reason.
  8. bunkbail
    Technically DSD support is possible via all digital interface like USB, optical, coax (RCA/BNC), AES and I2S, but AFAIK Audio-gd DACs only support DSD on USB and I2S.

    EDIT: According to the R2R-11 page, DSD support is available over USB only on the R2R-11.
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2018
  9. CoFire
    I would definitely recommend a power conditioner for any valuable electronics and definitely NOT a surge protector. Basic difference is a surge protector removes AC voltage spikes by shunting them to ground which still cause further damaging disturbances (N-G events). Because of how surge protectors work, they are somewhat unpredictable in function due to differences in electrical environment and still allow some initial spike through to your equipment due to response time. As far as I know, they all have this design limitation. Power conditioners also provide surge protection but also include an isolation transformer and some type of power noise filtering. The key is true isolation from the power grid meaning that blenders, vacuums, etc in your house and your neighbors houses aren't causing "ripples" that dirty your device's power. I haven't even talked about power line inductance and impedences which vary all over depending on where you live, your electrical wiring, and again your neighbors (aka power grid buddies).

    At work, I have many pieces of high dollar industrial equipment around the lab and I have indirectly seen dirty power (AC voltage spikes) take out electronics that are designed to operate in field type environments get taken out in a room temperature, moderated environment. Meaning its not use or harsh weather beating on electronics, but something else. Since incorporating these conditioners, I have seen zero failures in these electronics that are "cause unknown" because you don't typically see this damage, it just happens one day unless you're unlucky enough I guess to experience a major brown or black out. I'm fairly confident in this conclusion because I was replacing electronic modules like clockwork until I added protection.

    I always like to think of power as a calm lake. Everytime someone uses electricity, imagine them dropping an object into the lake and where you plan to drop your object, you'll see ripples from the other user which is in this analogy is dirty power.

    I agree with @phthora about power cable isolation. I just saw some potentially interchanging of surge protection and power conditioning terminology and felt obligated to comment. I think surge protectors for sensitive electronics are practically useless. Especially with modern electronics.
    ctaxxxx, bunkbail and phthora like this.
  10. phthora
    Excellent advice! I hadn't realized that surge protectors were so worthless. My interest in a power conditioner was mostly because my desktop amps get buzzy drawing through my power strip which, annoyingly, was not that cheap to begin with. Guess I know why now. Thanks for clarifying!
  11. CoFire
    I didn't have a ton of time with the A100, I had it for months but listened to it for a couple weeks out of that time. I was comparing a Grace m9XX, the Mimby, and A100. Grace had a warmer DAC and the Mimby slightly more detail, more cold sounding. The Grace and A100 drove the 400i equivalently but A100 excelled with the HD6XX by far, no comparison, though the HD6XX didn't sound bad on the Grace, just not the same level of life/dynamics. The m9XX can drive sensitive IEMs to fairly power hungry headphones but the A100 has tons of power especially with the jumpers in place but I don't think has a sensitive enough pot to drive IEMs (didn't test this). With the jumpers in place, you are essentially driving headphones with speaker taps. I can't speak to noise floor of both setups though I didn't perceive any issues.

    The a Grace is about the size of my fist, the A100 is huge in comparison and is amp only. Both are great products. I was interested in the A100 to drive speakers on a desk but changed directions and went with the JBL LSR30X (self powered) driven by the Grace. The most blaring observation is how good the HD6XX sounded out of the A100 so now I'm somewhat interested in the A100 or other synergistic amps like the Bottlecrack with Speedball. The Grace amp/dac sounded far better with the 400i largely due to the DAC and the Grave has plenty of power to drive those headphones and many current hungry headphones. The Grace is an impressive little combo unit. No popping issues with either setup.

    Those were my overall observations. Still looking for anybody that can provide a comparison between the Grace m9XX and Audio GD NFB-11.28 and R2R-11. My main interest is the power they offer over a Grace and DAC quality. I honestly don't think the DAC will be an upgrade but I'm open to impressions.
  12. Neyeah
    Hi All,

    I have been trying to read up and catch up as much as I can.

    I just placed an order for r2r 11 ! replacing my Carat-Ruby dac/amp if anyone even knows what it is as I cannot even find a review of this product = )
    However shipment would probably be 24th Feb earliest as we are celebrating chinese new year over here in Asia

    Just to share:
    I use Audio Engine A5+ as my dekstop Speakers
    I have DT 990 250ohm & K7xx as headphone and To go Fitear 334 as my iems.

    Mostly use my headphone for gaming now in fps games and some music

    Would like to ask about this burn-in for r2r 11, when it is just on without any music/sound file playing is it consider to be "burning" in ?

    Also lets say after hitting the target 300-400hrs or so, Do I need to turn it off when i'm not using my PC for durability/lifetime purposes or can I just leave it on ?
  13. Nadham
    I just left my R2R 11 Switched ON and without connecting it to any source for about 2 weeks
  14. iamjaymo
    Any of you guys running the R2R 11 just as a DAC? Thinking of getting an NFB-1AMP, or other balanced amp, for balanced headphones.

    Was looking at the 28.38 but hate to give up the “ladder DAC” sound I’ve grown to love from the R2R. Wish AGD had an all-in-one amp with balanced in the R2R scheme.

    So, any opinions on the R2R 11 as a DAC only connected to the NFB-1?
    Anaz likes this.
  15. alota
    Niceeeeeee 1518377879254-139974837.jpg
    YtseJamer likes this.
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