Douk Audio U2 Pro DDC - Poorman DDC for an affordable & clean digital signal
Oct 11, 2022 at 11:23 AM Post #331 of 577
Not sure, if doesn't say, probably not.
There is a simple trick to find out if an audio transmission is bitperfect. Bitperfect is a must if AC3/DTS signals are sent.
All one need is a special audio file and a home theater receiver with AC3/DTS decoders on board and coax/optical input - even the cheapest one can do this.
I made myself an audio file (click) - it is an ordinary *.wave with encoded AC3 data inside (hidden information). If the device is bitperfect (signal pass through) and all the data transmission is bitperfect as well, a hidden information will be decoded properly by the home theater receiver - music playing. If transmission will be altered in any way, the HT receiver will not be able to decode it so a static noise will be heard.
Of course, no DSP in chain, wasapi exclusive or ASIO and no software volume control (all the faders to max - 0dB).
So if anyone would be so kind to make a test I will be very appreciated.
 
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Oct 11, 2022 at 11:25 AM Post #332 of 577
Same thing for MQA
 
Oct 11, 2022 at 5:07 PM Post #333 of 577
Interesting re the iLink and fair enough re future plans, I do appreciate portable DDCs would be a niche within a niche within a niche. But for the brave/crazy few wiling to experiment and put up with a cable/device jungle (!) the sonic rewards are certainly there.

There's something there for sure, but you have a point that DDCs are niche products and especially those designed for portable use. The smallest we got was iOne. It had S/PDIF i/o alongside USB and wireless inputs, so technically it was possible to use it as a DDC device.
 
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Oct 14, 2022 at 12:44 PM Post #334 of 577
Thanks for the idea to try this out in a semi mobile setup. I don't have my DC adapter for powering the douk in the car yet, but I have setup my txco version with an ifi ipower 2 from my phone to my xd-05 bal and there is a great difference from straight USB to the xd-05. (Using S12 on balanced hart cable.)

Everything is tighter and more well defined. Transients extend better and when things get busy all instruments stay separated.

While on usb from phone to the xd-05 instruments are competing or trying to overtake each other to get to me.

With the douk I'm getting really good depth.
 
Oct 14, 2022 at 7:16 PM Post #335 of 577
Thanks for the idea to try this out in a semi mobile setup. I don't have my DC adapter for powering the douk in the car yet, but I have setup my txco version with an ifi ipower 2 from my phone to my xd-05 bal and there is a great difference from straight USB to the xd-05. (Using S12 on balanced hart cable.)

Everything is tighter and more well defined. Transients extend better and when things get busy all instruments stay separated.

While on usb from phone to the xd-05 instruments are competing or trying to overtake each other to get to me.

With the douk I'm getting really good depth.
Glad you're getting good improvements from insertion of the Douk - it's impressive how a more precisely clocked signal brings benefits across the board isn't it. I wonder whether quality portable dacs with their clocking and USB input constraints due to form factor might stand to benefit more from a modest DDC than comparably priced desktop dacs.

Certainly I also got dramatic improvements over my desktop SMSL D2 DAC by adding a Gustard U18 DDC + LHY OCK-1 clock which gives a remarkable sound several levels up again over the Douk, but then so they should as they're >15x the Douk cost.

Presume you have the same 'standard' Pro (<$100) version as I, not the one with the upgraded clocks?

I really should just stop there with the standard version, but I'm kinda curious about how much of a benefit the upgraded clocks version would bring to my portable rig.

Can anyone comment on how much of a step up the upgraded clock version is?
 
Oct 17, 2022 at 12:21 PM Post #337 of 577
Can anyone comment on how much of a step up the upgraded clock version is?
Screenshot_20221017-112039.png

https://www.ebay.com/itm/254626016242

If I may ask, do you mean here upgraded clocks inside a product? Or external clocks?
Internal clock on the douk.
 
Oct 17, 2022 at 12:33 PM Post #338 of 577
Internal clock on the douk.

If it's affordable (from what I see it is), it's worth a shot. Worst case scenario, clocks won't decrease sound quality and the risk with such products is small in general.
 
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Oct 17, 2022 at 1:59 PM Post #339 of 577
Can anyone comment on how much of a step up the upgraded clock version is?

Its a clear step up in ‘price’ for sure :).

Jokes aside, I am also curious about this as well. So far, there hasn’t been a clear answer, mostly because people either get the upgraded or the regular version, not both, to be able to perform A/B testing. However, I am pretty sure, a handful of them might have got both versions, and hoping to hear impressions from them.

I also wonder whether a upgraded clock will be constrained by other elements in the design at this price point, such as the caps, but I am no expert on that. Usually, to be able to hear delta improvement in going from an already good to a slightly better setup, one ought to have optimized the rest of the components to perform at their best. Douk is already quite good, so to get the benefits of an upgraded clock, perhaps the other components in the circuitry need to be upgraded as well. Just my two cents, but I am willing to approach this with an open mind.
 
Oct 17, 2022 at 2:57 PM Post #340 of 577
I haven't heard the mid tier one but I've owned the base model and highest model and there is a very clear jump in performance over I2s but I will say I noticed it a lot more when powered off a linear power supply vs supplied power from the data USB connection. To warrant the price jump, imo you need a decent power supply.
 
Oct 17, 2022 at 4:01 PM Post #341 of 577
I haven't heard the mid tier one but I've owned the base model and highest model and there is a very clear jump in performance over I2s but I will say I noticed it a lot more when powered off a linear power supply vs supplied power from the data USB connection. To warrant the price jump, imo you need a decent power supply.
Have you tested if a power cable improves its sound?
I think I'm buying this LPS: https://aliexpi.com/RMnA
 
Oct 17, 2022 at 4:46 PM Post #343 of 577
I don't know this linear PSU, but trying out a quiet PSU particularly with digital components is something I highly recommend :)
Lol, very good. I think my ifi purifier count ( power/x, spdifs, AC etc) must be getting up to around 6 by now... so to the converted you are preaching. 😄
 
Oct 17, 2022 at 4:59 PM Post #344 of 577
Lol, very good. I think my ifi purifier count ( power/x, spdifs, AC etc) must be getting up to around 6 by now... so to the converted you are preaching. 😄

Very good, there's place for you in the noise-free heaven for sure :D
 
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