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You tease you
I’ve gone off the idea that this might be a Mojo 2. New idea - a small lapel badge commemorating five years since launch of the Hugo, with a small photo insert of Rob, John and Hugo, perhaps surrounded by a ring of coloured segments matching the different sample rate lights, to be given away free with each new purchase of a Chord dac.
Just in! The Blue MKII is still in the box.
Could also be a xmas card to all registered Chord whatever owners.
I still think it’s a table cloth.
Unboxed and listening over dual BNC. Most excellent.
Dictionaries are really beside the point as they comment on general usage past (sometimes) and present, not what is grammatically current. I am open to correction but I do not remember "launch" being used this way until the last few years. Another example is "divide" as in the " divide between rich and poor". the noun is division, but what people usually mean is "gap". I think divide has been used like this for a long time. I gave the example previously of "reveal" that is being used more and more as a noun. The noun is "revelation". The gerund is "revealing". We used to say "unveiling". Watching NFL you hear the commentators say a player has "broken contain".
I shall say nothing more on the topic.
Getting back to business: I have a Chord TT. I am thinking of upgrading (why I don't know as the TT sounds great) and can't decide whether to get the Dave or perhaps an R2R DAC. The thing I do not like about the Dave (and the TT) is that you are paying for amplification also and I use an external head amp.
The amplification in Dave is less than in chip based R2R DACs as it doesn't require current to voltage conversion. As posted by Rob "Yes my DAC architecture is very simple, and this accounts (in part) for it's transparency. In a conventional DAC you have, by necessity, a very complex analogue section - a differential architecture, with two current to voltage converters (I to V), differential to single ended converter plus filter, and finally headphone amplifier."
The only R2R DACs that I am aware of without amplifications stages are the MSB Select DAC 2, TheTotal DAC 12 with multiple resistor ladders and the Trinity DAC with Multiple PCM 1704 chips. These are much more expensive than the Dave.
I reckon that the headphone output doesn't add much additional cost to the Dave. It is useful for comparison purposes.
What is the rest of your system? Amp and speakers? Headphones? Analog? All sources need output circuitry, with Dave or TT2 you would get super low distortion output circuitry capable of driving any cable most headphones and with a no compromise digital volume control total win win situation
The confusion about the ‘amplification’ in Rob’s designs is that it is a single output stage as opposed to 4 output stages in conventional amplification designs. It’s analogous to the line-out of conventional DACs and very transparent. There is a lot of design that goes in to this that is tied directly to the DAC and not so much a seperate part of the system as a whole. It’s not like an amplification stage was added on to a DAC stage.
Rob‘s designs must have the Current to Voltage stage, but it also combines the other amplification stages in conventional designs in to one analogue output stage and the output level is controlled digitally. This is possible because of the performance of the Pulse Array DAC. The design as a whole is tightly integrated and Rob has posted quite a bit about the challenges he has had in order to achieve such a simple output stage.
I was about to reply to @audio_1 then saw that your post answered it for me!
But just to add - why does one need an I to V converter anyway, as R2R are sometimes supplied without amplification. I too could eliminate the I to V conversion (so called voltage mode DACs) too with pulse array - and the reason I don't is distortion, as voltage mode DACs are a terrible idea as they create a lot of distortion, and some nasty HF distortion too. In experiments done decades ago with voltage mode, I was getting THD of the order of 0.03% - and that's around 10,000 times more distortion than Dave can do. And this distortion is highly audible. The reason it creates such a vast amount of distortion is the switching activity sees the OP voltage, and this in turn changes the switching delay times of the DAC switching elements, which creates distortion. And it is completely unavoidable, with all DAC types suffering from the problem.
Another problem with voltage mode is that the HF filtering is difficult to do, and so unacceptable levels of switching noise is fed to the pre or power amplifiers, which in turn creates more THD and more noise floor modulation. And of course you haven't actually replaced anything, as an amplifier to drive HP or speakers is still required. The beauty of my system is that the amplifier for drive is combined with the essential I to V that the DAC needs in one single stage, so we get the benefits of simplicity for better transparency plus ultra low distortion.
May I ask if anyone is using Dave with speakers and what is the amp/speaker combination chosen?
I am asking because I could now invest only say $5k for both and I'm wondering if by doing so I'm kind of wasting Dave's potential.
I hope I could explain myself despite not being a native English speaker...
Have you read about the efficient Super Alnico speakers and/or @romaz’s thoughts on them driven directly from the DAVE? Not sure if they will suit your sound preference, and I’ve never heard them, but they might be worth researching.
Thanks for this.
In fact yes I had read something in the past but was discouraged by the fact that in the country where I will be relocating to in a few days there is no Omega dealer.
Actually this would be a great solution as I need near field speakers so no need for tons of dB...
I just read that they can ship worldwide, I’m wondering how the warranty would work in that case.
I will drop them an email.
I will also do some research in @romaz posts to see if there is any downside in driving them straight out of the Dave
These have a number of fans here on Head-Fi but I think the important thing would be for you to hear a pair connected to Dave before purchase. They have their undoubted strengths but they are not everyones cup of tea.