Matrix Audio X-Sabre Pro

Discussion in 'Dedicated Source Components' started by mtoc, Nov 11, 2016.
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  1. DarKu
    Team X-Sabre Pro, I need your help.

    I am using an iMac via USB to my X-Sabre Pro, I'm mostly listening to Tidal HiFi and I have a problem that bothers me: it doesnt work in Exclusive Mode with my X-Sabre Pro, as I hear a very annoying noise/hiss and no music at all.
    I tried all possible combinations of these 3 settings: Exclusive Mode, Force DAC to maximum volume, disable MQA decoding, but any change I do when I engage Exclusive Mode I get lots of noise/static and no sound. Disabling Exclusive Mode makes my DAC sing again.
    Ideas what should I check?
    I have the latest firmware (1.82 I believe) and XMOS (6.60)
    PS: In MIDI Audio setup it is left at 32 bit 384 Khz integer mode.
    Any help will be much appreciated.
  2. zerstorer
    I just got X-SPDIF2 connected it in front of a microrendu with ifi and used the LPS-1 to power it.

    Using a cheap HDMI cable I hear a significant improvement in liquidity and transparency. Perhaps to a greater degree than adding a LPS-1 to a microrendu.

    Well worth the money!

    This also means that Matrix compromised on the USB input of the XSabre pro. The x-spdif2 is clearly superior.
  3. taxman2

    I know previously you've owned gustard x20 and were using it with SU-1. Can you tell if there's a noticeable difference and if so could you kindly describe it. Thank you!
    My X-Sabre PRO has been running since January this year. After the firmware update, it sounds much more precise in details. My DAC-X20 is unplugged now.
    My friend made a special re-clocking box for me, which is supposed to be used between SU-1 and X-Sabre PRO in HDMI LVDS. 22.5792MHz and 24.576MHz from a rubidium clock are given to this box. It re-clocks BCK/DSDCLK. This box has brought my X-Sabre PRO into an untimate level.
  5. taxman2
    Well, that is nice to hear, but can you tell a difference without using this re-cloacking box? Is there really a noticeable difference? Never mind DSD1024. I am good enough with DSD256.
  6. project86 Contributor
    Take this with a grain of salt, as I sent back the X-Sabre Pro loaner quite some time ago.... I'm extrapolating from my recent experience using I2S on DACs from Wyred 4 Sound and PS Audio.

    I'd say the important part is going with I2S, by any means available. Go for the X-SPDIF 2 for under $400. Or grab a Cayin iDAP-6 for a bit more to have a full-featured I2S capable transport. Spend even more on a PS Audio PerfectWave Transport (close to $1K on the used market) if you still spin discs. In all three cases, I2S over HDMI seems to have an advantage over even a well-implemented USB or SPDIF interface.

    It doesn't cost much to grab an X-SPDIF 2 or (SU-1 now that I think of it) to hear this for yourself. It would have been great if Matrix had followed through on the X-Server which featured I2S out.... that would be an ideal match for the X-Sabre Pro. Still not sure what they were thinking on that project.
  7. DarKu
    Ok guys, I have a CRAAZY question for those who own an X-Sabre Pro and a google Chromecast.

    Will Chromecast work with X-Sabre Pro via HDMI (I2s input of the X-sabre) ? If so will streaming services work (google music, spotify, tidal, etc) as well? Appreciate any input.
    I thinking of a cheap method of integrating X-Sabre Pro in the living room using Tidal streaming, any ideas besides this one?
    No, the HDMI connetor on X-Sabre PRO is for I2S/DSD LVDS and has nothing to do with the HDMI standards Chromecast follows.

    The cheapest solution for Tidal may be:
    (1) purchase Chromecast Audio (not Chromecast) and an optical cable, one side of which is a round mini plug
    (2) prepare an Android tablet or a mobile phone, install BubbleUPnP and purchase its licence
    (3) connect Chromecast Audio to X-Sabre PRO via the optical cable
    (4) choose "Chromecast Audio" as Renderer, "Local and Cloud" as Library
    (5) set up Tidal on the Android tablet and enjoy

    Up to 96kHz/24-bit, no DSD
    Using BubbleUPnP Server on a Windows PC/Linux PC/Mac makes Chromecast Audio as OpenHome Media renderer, enabling its control by OpenHome Media Control Point such as Kazoo, fidata Music App, etc.
  9. DarKu
    Super-duper great idea! Many thanks!
    I'll let you know if that worked for me.
    It should work, as it is working in my connection.
    I have to say, the sound is not "high-end" but acceptable as BGM. Use a good quality USB power input to Chromecast Audio.
    The chip inside Chromecast Audio is said to be capable of handing up to 192kHz/24-bit. It is up to Google whether 192kHz will become playable.
    The firmware update of Chromecast Audio is automatic and you do not have to be aware of it.
    If it outputs DoP64 (= PCM 176.4kHz) in WAV, then DSD64 will be able to be played, too.
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