CHORD ELECTRONICS DAVE
Aug 23, 2022 at 2:13 PM Post #22,201 of 25,914


These guys compared dCS Bartok to Mola Mola and the Mola apparently sounded much better, then Hans Beekheuzen compared the Mola Mola to the DAVE and the DAVE sounded much better. Hhhmmmmmmmm

Well, GTT Audio is the US Distributor of Mola Mola. Might still be great, but I am not sure this is the review to use.
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 2:15 PM Post #22,202 of 25,914
Have you also tried Opto DX between Dave and Mscaler when u had it?

I find the scaler its best with all sides optical
Even toslink out on limited 192k (1/4M taps)
I've used the M-scaler on battery + optical the whole time, as I hated it plugged in. I had the Opto-Dx on order, but cancelled it last minute. I just had a visceral reaction of "i'm done with all these cables and crap". Dan told me I'd still need a battery on at least one of the sides to get the best results and it kind of defeated the purpose for me, just like Rob said about the Opto-dx. I've also tried Farad and multiple streamers. After getting the SRC-DX my setup was : Pc plugged into power conditioner (must have)->Jitterbug->Intona Usb Isolator-> SRC-DX-D.C blocks. The Intona actually made a considerable difference, but I returned it because all that crap was triggering my ocd. I'm still considering the Monoprice Slimrun Optical-Usb but..another PSU, another 10m of cable...
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 2:18 PM Post #22,203 of 25,914
Well, GTT Audio is the US Distributor of Mola Mola. Might still be great, but I am not sure this is the review to use.
my tldr on the Mola Mola is, Darko said it makes the Bartok sound veiled. Fair enough, As far as i know that uses different filters from Lina, and sounds "rounder", less bite. However even the Lina does without the clock. For me the selling point of Lina is Expanse for Headphone use. A/B'ing Dave and Lina with normal crossfeed, i'm not sure i'd bother getting it.
Afaik the Tambaqui has no such feature, so it might be fine for speaker use, but I wouldn't lose any sleep over not having heard it.
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 2:27 PM Post #22,204 of 25,914
I've used the M-scaler on battery + optical the whole time, as I hated it plugged in.
I assume that was optical in and dual coax out? For me that gives only few% benefit.
Its when all sides are isolated it suddenly matters
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 2:43 PM Post #22,205 of 25,914
I assume that was optical in and dual coax out? For me that gives only few% benefit.
Its when all sides are isolated it suddenly matters
Yeah, that's true, I've ended up preferring Hqp after a few tries though. When the Sync Li filter came out, that sounded 90% like the M-scaler to me. I still ended up always using Sync-L or Sync-Mx. And now back to solo Dave.
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 3:14 PM Post #22,206 of 25,914
my tldr on the Mola Mola is, Darko said it makes the Bartok sound veiled. Fair enough, As far as i know that uses different filters from Lina, and sounds "rounder", less bite. However even the Lina does without the clock. For me the selling point of Lina is Expanse for Headphone use. A/B'ing Dave and Lina with normal crossfeed, i'm not sure i'd bother getting it.
Afaik the Tambaqui has no such feature, so it might be fine for speaker use, but I wouldn't lose any sleep over not having heard it.
I wonder what that clock is doing to the sound, it seems you really like the effect that it has. Maybe Chord should look into these external clocks, perhaps as part of the next M Scaler that is being developed. A lot of people say that the weakness of Chord DACs are the power supplies.
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 3:35 PM Post #22,207 of 25,914
I wonder what that clock is doing to the sound, it seems you really like the effect that it has. Maybe Chord should look into these external clocks, perhaps as part of the next M Scaler that is being developed. A lot of people say that the weakness of Chord DACs are the power supplies.
Those people are 100% correct. I guess Dave's starting to show his age as well.
Mostly likely it's due to jitter reduction, and the streamer and dac being synced up. But that's true without the clock as well. While It doesn't change the sound signature at all, it makes everything better. It's more subtle than the M-scaler or Hqp exploding the soundstage though.
I honestly think it sounds worse on purpose just so they can sell you another box, but hey...Even with Dave you have to go chasing for improvements and it's not as easy as ..take my money. I did like the fact that even the dac has precise real time temperature monitoring. A lot of attention to detail clearly went into it.
Which is why It's a bit perplexing to see/hear the Amp volume knob grinding against the inside. Feels like the Amp was outsourced somewhere else.
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 4:15 PM Post #22,208 of 25,914
Aug 23, 2022 at 4:47 PM Post #22,209 of 25,914
While I agree on them selling another box, Lina has a built in up sampler and streamer, which is a capital sin according to Rob, and sounds great. With Dave you have the pleasure of buying 3-4 additional boxes + power supplies and fancy cables. Only one from them, but I see no difference. Looking forward to seeing the new M-scaler's price.
I, for one am over blanket statements. I care about the end result. People who get paid to develop the product can worry about the rest. I feel like Chord owes me a salary for the year's I've spent tinkering to optimize it.
There's no doubt in my mind dCS are as opportunistic as can be. They sell a 100k dac after all. I am, however, sure it sounds much better than Rossini, which probably sounds better than Lina. I'm also 90% sure the sound quality upgrade is one download (that they won't give you) away.
Chord, on the other hand, seems to ride the coat tails of Rob's R&D and cut corners in the engineering department. Pick your poison.
It's also clear that there's more than one way to skin a cat. While Dave does have a "unique" sound signature, its strength does seem to come at the expense of...almost everything else.
Because while the approach may differ, and it might not be accomplished as elegantly, or on the cheap, the competition is finding ways to catch up or surpass it in many other areas.
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 8:22 PM Post #22,210 of 25,914
I’m using a Siltech Double Crown power cable and although it’s a “clone”of the original it sounds just like how the original is described in various reviews. It adds much needed body to Dave, increased holographics, analog flow, and super accurate timbre reproduction, it just might be an end game power cable… I have no desire to purchase an aftermarket power supply like the farad or the various Sean Jacob's PSUs. In fact, I’d be willing to wager it comes dangerously close to those aftermarket power supply’s for a fraction of the price ($300). Might be the best value in high end audio especially for those who want a huge improvement in sound without spending an arm and a leg and ofcourse you are not invalidating your warranty either. Just wanted to share this for the more budget oriented Dave owners looking for a huge upgrade 😉
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 8:34 PM Post #22,211 of 25,914
Those people are 100% correct. I guess Dave's starting to show his age as well.
Mostly likely it's due to jitter reduction, and the streamer and dac being synced up. But that's true without the clock as well. While It doesn't change the sound signature at all, it makes everything better. It's more subtle than the M-scaler or Hqp exploding the soundstage though.
I honestly think it sounds worse on purpose just so they can sell you another box, but hey...Even with Dave you have to go chasing for improvements and it's not as easy as ..take my money. I did like the fact that even the dac has precise real time temperature monitoring. A lot of attention to detail clearly went into it.
Which is why It's a bit perplexing to see/hear the Amp volume knob grinding against the inside. Feels like the Amp was outsourced somewhere else.
It's all taste in the end, Golden Sound did not like the Bartok at all and that is supposed to be better than the Lina, in fact, I have read a few people that didn't like the Bartok, too smooth and blankets things. It may be that the DAVE is not to your liking, I heard the dCS Rossini stack with Mágico very expensive speakers and I was not impressed at all. To me it sounded overly smooth and I felt it covered my details, I like the Qutest with M Scaler better, but that's just me, I find after listening to a ton of DACs that I like what Rob does. No offense.
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 9:01 PM Post #22,212 of 25,914
I’m using a Siltech Double Crown power cable and although it’s a “clone”of the original it sounds just like how the original is described in various reviews. It adds much needed body to Dave, increased holographics, analog flow, and super accurate timbre reproduction, it just might be an end game power cable… I have no desire to purchase an aftermarket power supply like the farad or the various Sean Jacob's PSUs. In fact, I’d be willing to wager it comes dangerously close to those aftermarket power supply’s for a fraction of the price ($300). Might be the best value in high end audio especially for those who want a huge improvement in sound without spending an arm and a leg and ofcourse you are not invalidating your warranty either. Just wanted to share this for the more budget oriented Dave owners looking for a huge upgrade 😉
Where did you find them for $300. Cable Company has them listed at 10k?
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 9:05 PM Post #22,213 of 25,914
Where did you find them for $300. Cable Company has them listed at 10k?
Aliexpress is full of copy/fake cables (note he mentioned it being a "clone") of the popular brands, Siltech being one of them. They are 90-97% accurate in terms of looks. Inside, not so much. Usually use the very cheapest and thinnest of copper or teflon, no shielding and some filler....Of course, it depends if you feel cables make a difference overall. They are quite well built though and feel/look the part.
 
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Aug 23, 2022 at 9:49 PM Post #22,214 of 25,914
Where did you find them for $300. Cable Company has them listed at 10k?
Aliexpress is full of copy/fake cables (note he mentioned it being a "clone") of the popular brands, Siltech being one of them. They are 90-97% accurate in terms of looks. Inside, not so much. Usually use the very cheapest and thinnest of copper or teflon, no shielding and some filler....Of course, it depends if you feel cables make a difference overall. They are quite well built though and feel/look the part.
Yes they can be found on Aliexpress: https://www.aliexpress.com/item/3256803433720373.html?spm=a2g0o.order_list.0.0.21ef1802TrX6WO

I visited a friend's house and we compared the Siltech to his genuine Furutech Powerflux 18 Power Cord which is a $2k+ cable and the difference wasn't even close! The Siltech sounded silky smooth with far more body and accurate timbre. Instruments and vocals pop right out at you in an almost hauntingly way. Think, of the detail of a silver cable with the richness of a copper cable but it's more than that. Music is presented in a way that just sounds right, real, and genuine. I haven't heard the original but to both of us it sounds just how the reviewers described it, so I ordered it on the spot and it was delivered in less than two weeks to the USA. If anyone wants to purchase one and compare it against any of the aftermarket PSU's it would make for a very interesting write-up!
 
Aug 23, 2022 at 10:30 PM Post #22,215 of 25,914
Hey Guys,

I'm out of the game and burnt out from this hobby. I'm like a 5-year cyclical end-user. But clocks talk pull me back in slightly. I'm Pro-Clock.

I just wanted to show my support for those whom are now discovering what clocks at the source can do. It's too bad it took the dCS Lina to shine a light, but better late than never. It's not an imagination, it's real. Clocks are awesome. I only lurk a few times a month and trying to cut to zero, so when I see clock talk...

Forgive me as I moved on from this hobby and have only a faint trace of my research left. Also, forgive me as I'm just a Hugo₂ CIEM peasant. The best CIEM chain up to the transducer in the history of Head-Fi, but I'm not playing high-stakes with the Doyles and the Durrs as I'm more risk-adverse and just want to get my hands dirty and experiment in this hobby before deciding if it's worth it to scale for CIEMs. With Clocks, I lean towards scaling. Without Clocks, I lean towards selling off and moving on from this hobby.

I also love Chord DACs as I can listen almost literally straight out of the FPGA DAC out of a WBT 2-channel CIEM cable that only GOAT IEM reviewers have in possession at this time. I only get cables that have full control of the supply chain (metals) the old school way.

wbt_sep.png

Anyways, IMO, the source should be treated separately from the DAC. The DAC should have no say in the source besides for the input interface. So I don't understand why a DAC designer would comment on the source. Does the DAC designer realise when they use a MSI Laptop optical or their son's gaming motherboard optical OUT, they are using external clocks? Albeit, very cheap clocks. SPDIF quality is determined by the clocks. Cheap clocks have high jitter I agree, so why is our DAC designer using cheap external clocks to feed his Chord DAC? A bit hypocritical. TV optical OUT, cheap clocks. Chromecast Audio, cheap clocks. MSI Latops, cheap clocks. Noisy Mains PCs, cheap clocks. I could go on and on, but since I'm out of the hobby, I have long COVID brain fog. It's like CD transports with optical OUT have Hi-Fi clocks since the beginning of time, so now if I feed a Chord DAC with a CD transport, external clocks are bad? Just because you can't visually identify the clocks doesn't mean there's not a clock heavily embedded. DAP users optical OUT have clocks too that's why early Hugo days, some prefer DAPs as the source because it had better clocking than a dumb file server source.

During COVID-19, I clock-rolled. I went from embedded clocks which are better than cheap clocks listed above to Hi-Fi clocks you find in AIO devices. I finally settled on State of the Art (SOTA) clocks which destroy any Hi-Fi clocks out there. For SPDIF you needs clocks, so why not get the best? Why criticise external clocks when anytime you use SPDIF you are using some type of clocking?

SOTA clocks are near perfect and the measurements prove it. You don't have to worry about jitter or timing errors with SOTA, it's a modern SPDIF solution which is impossible to find these days. Also can SOTA USB, but the Asus Sage Motherboard allowing external clocks internally is a rabbit hole and SPDIF will always be superior to USB. It's like if you replace the typical Hi-Fi clocks in a CD transport with SOTA clocks, it's a whole different realm. You should be able to scale DACs and sources independent of one another. These are not AIO devices. Chord DACs are not miracle workers, it's better to eliminate jitter and timing errors at the source than letting the Chord DAC with a small PLL handle the workload. If you have timing errors, by the time the Chord DAC receives the not-perfect-as-the-original-source, it will be too late. How can the Chord DAC recover these timing errors? It's impossible. Like the Yangtze River only flows one-way, you can't get it back. It's better to feed the Chord DAC a near perfect signal free from jitter and timing errors. I believe that is what dCS AIO devices and DAP AIO devices attempt to do, but will never be able to scale to SOTA levels. If you reverse engineer TOTL AIO devices, you will notice they are running typical Hi-Fi clocks. Hi-Fi clocks are nothing compared to State of the Art clocks. I'm always skeptical when I clock-rolled, but each iteration just brought more Nirvana. I was even skeptical with the 2-channel CIEM cable, but Oh Lord...

My external clocks are slightly larger than a Hugo₂, so it's going to destroy PLL or coin-size clocks. They are classified as State of the Art clocks because they measure SOTA. But remember, this is all source. It has zero to do with a Chord DAC. You can be feeding any brand of DAC. But if you don't feed with the best source possible, performance will be abysmal no matter which DAC you use.

When it comes to DACs, I follow every word of Rob Watts. I'm a die-hard Rob Watts fan. When it comes to sources, Rob Watts is more like a novice PC builder building a PC for the first time. You can't be an expert in every facet of this hobby. So when he talks sources, he's like a novice up against seasoned MasterRacePCGamer builders. I just wish he kept a more open-mind on sources.

I hate any glorified high-markup noisy mains USB file servers that litter this place. I want SOTA as the foundation then mOhms low impedance throughout the chain. My power supplies are Super Capacitors only with Solid Core Silver Wiring throughout. Basically, I use a Medical-Grade Mean Well SMPS connected to the Mains. The other side of the SMPS is connected to the Super Capacitor Management System PCB. When you turn on the PCB, it automatically disconnects from the Mains. The other side is connected to about over 20,000 Farads total. Then I have a SwitchCraft DC plug with solid core to the PCB.

Anyways, here's some embedded PLL, clocks, etc. Okay, not recommending just as an example. My crystal for the SOTA clock is almost the size of a Mojo. Hi-Fi clocks sounded good when I went through that phase, but SOTA is stratospheres above anything out there.

https://www.cirrus.com/products/wm8804/

https://www.digikey.com/en/product-...-wm8805-s-pdif-digital-interface-transceivers

https://www.cirrus.com/products/wm8805/

If you read the Phoenix re-clocker for USB, it's similar to the impressions I get. But Phoenix is only a typical Hi-Fi clock. Just making a point you can clock i2s or USB. Dumb Passive Noisy Mains File Servers that everyone else is using are not my thing. I need active processes and zero noise floor, not Status Symbols.

Sorry for the intrusion, I play at the lower stakes but I love clock talk. I'm out after copy and pasting from another thread. House of The Dragons (HOTD) is my hobby now.
 
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