New Esoteric P-05/D-05
Oct 21, 2007 at 5:58 AM Post #46 of 91

neilvg

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Wow, I'm slow to find things on this forum these days. I'll have the APL NWO 3.0 GO (what a pretentious name!) soon. We'll see just how overkill it is for headphones or not when I compare the differences I hear using my EMM with speakers/headphones and the APL with speakers/headphones.

I do have to thank Spritzer for the XF2 recommendation. These tubes sound amazing in my ES2 and everything you have mentioned in terms of their characteristics seem spot on. The Bass does indeed have less bloom, but in its place comes a cleaner, and actually more impactful bass. This is what I was looking for, as the warm fuzzy lower end of the GE Fat Bottle tubes just seems a bit sloppy to me. The upper registers and the midrange are sweet and clean, with just enough of a 'tubey' nature to round out and warm up any harshness/sibilance that the HE90 can sometimes magnify. This allows me to actually listen at a slightly louder volume level which makes the bass even more impactful, which I like. Lastly, the headstage seems to be much larger in all directions, likely in part caused by the cleaner bass since now instrument separation is more clearly delineated, but not 'artificially' so.

I will likely reactivate my old NWO thread once I get the player (which should be very shortly now). So stay posted. As always, those who are local to me, you are invited to take part in the impressions process. You'll receive a PM.

Neil
 
Oct 21, 2007 at 10:43 AM Post #47 of 91

spritzer

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I can't wait to read some impressions about the 3.0GO. I'm on the fence on that one as no matter how you look at it, that is a whole lot of money for a CDP even with the USD so horribly cheap. I'm also loving my new DAC which beats the Meridian easily and I can only guess how good it will be once I've modded it.

The XF2's are really the magic bullet for any EL34 based amp. All those people that have heard the ES-1 or a Blue Hawaii without them don't know what they are missing...
very_evil_smiley.gif
 
Oct 28, 2007 at 3:32 AM Post #48 of 91

howiebrou

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The P-01 VRDS is unique to the P-01.

Even the P-03 and X-01 use a different less robust but still pretty brutal version. The DCS one is not the top VRDS version either.

The P-05 is even lower down the tree than the P-03 X-01 versions and Wadia does not use VRDS anymore. They have migrated to a cheaper Korean transport.

I have A/B ed the D-05 and D-03. The D-03 still wins even with less bits. IN addition the P-03 beats the P-05 when both are going through the D-05 so the P-03 and D-05 would be a good combo. The P-01 makes the P-03 sound anaemic when both are going through either the D-03 or D-01 mono dacs.

You get what you pay for!
wink.gif
 
Oct 28, 2007 at 4:15 AM Post #49 of 91

Icarium

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Quote:

Originally Posted by spritzer /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I can't wait to read some impressions about the 3.0GO. I'm on the fence on that one as no matter how you look at it, that is a whole lot of money for a CDP even with the USD so horribly cheap. I'm also loving my new DAC which beats the Meridian easily and I can only guess how good it will be once I've modded it.

The XF2's are really the magic bullet for any EL34 based amp. All those people that have heard the ES-1 or a Blue Hawaii without them don't know what they are missing...
very_evil_smiley.gif



Hrmf. I guess I'll have to hear Neilvg's. But I have the feeling Hytron 3D21As will remain my own magic bullet ;p I am thinking about getting speaker monoblocks designed around those with some nice mercury rectifiers and not sure what as driver tubes.

I personally consider the G08 to be profoundly filthy. So I don't doubt your DAC is vastly superior. But obviously me and you don't mesh exactly on lots of things ;p

Having heard the 3.0 GO... it is pretty damn impressive. But 30k is still a lot of money and like I've said previous... kind of over kill imo. We'll see what Neil thinks when he gets his.

However, APL has impressed me enough that I decided to be Alex Peychev's guinea pig for his up coming SA10/SA60/DV60 (DV60 for me) mod for an insanely killer price that I'm not supposed to disclose. There are a ton of features missing from the DV60 mod versus the NWO that I will seriously miss besides the less DACs per channel which I'm not sure really bothers me (Custom made capacitor coupled versus custom made R-core transformer coupled being one of the big differences. No USB functionality. And I thinkkk no pre-amp functionality is what this means "The unit will not have built-in remote controlled attenuator so a preamp or amp with volume control is a must."). Do I really need more than 6 DAC chips per channel in dual differential? I don't really think so ;p

Pricing in the end for the 3 units modded is something like:
The DV-60 would be $10.5K, SA-60 would be $9.5K. The SA-10 would be $8.5K with the same arrangement inside. (Difference is DV60 will do video. SA60 does not but does do dvd-a. The SA10 doesn't do dvd video or dvd-a but does do sacd and redbook).

The specs seem relatively similar to the APL modded Denon 3910 except for 2 main differences... 1. Better base unit duh (Esoteric versus Denon 3910). This matters most in regards to transport of course 2. Well this is really due to #1 as well, but the Esoteric will allow for a redesign that can actually be true balanced unlike anything based off the 3910.

Obviously a big step behind the NWO 3.0 GO stat wise... but how much of a difference will it be sound wise? I imagine the lack of transformer coupling will produce a quite noticeable different sound signature. I'm sure me and Neil will do some shootouts when my unit is done. Alex assures me that it will be the second best in digital reproduction, but of course he is somewhat biased ;p Still from what I've heard from his products I'm inclined to believe him ;p

P.S. He says the best digital he has after his products has consistently been the EMM Labs SE stack via his own experiences and blind shootouts which he says the sa10/sa60/dv60 line should best. He is also offering a transport only mod for the three units and the UX-1 which he believes will be good enough to put to rest any argument for computer based transports being caught up. We'll see
smily_headphones1.gif
 
Oct 28, 2007 at 4:36 AM Post #50 of 91

Icarium

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Quote:

Originally Posted by howiebrou /img/forum/go_quote.gif
The P-01 VRDS is unique to the P-01.

Even the P-03 and X-01 use a different less robust but still pretty brutal version. The DCS one is not the top VRDS version either.

The P-05 is even lower down the tree than the P-03 X-01 versions and Wadia does not use VRDS anymore. They have migrated to a cheaper Korean transport.

I have A/B ed the D-05 and D-03. The D-03 still wins even with less bits. IN addition the P-03 beats the P-05 when both are going through the D-05 so the P-03 and D-05 would be a good combo. The P-01 makes the P-03 sound anaemic when both are going through either the D-03 or D-01 mono dacs.

You get what you pay for!
wink.gif



Hrm, where are you getting your information that the P-01's VRDS is different from the X-01's (Not D2 but original and Limited. X-01 D2 definitely has the P03 transport) and presumably the UX-1/UX-1 Limited's? Not necessarily arguing with you, but my info says they have the same VRDS NEO though obviously there's significant difference in the rest of the transport implementations.

My info was from Alex Peychev of APL who has a partnership with Esoteric (Has met all their top people in the US and Japan and visited their facilities etc) and has opened up all their transports/units except for the latest latest (D2/pi/dv/sa60/sa10).
 
Oct 28, 2007 at 10:27 AM Post #51 of 91

spritzer

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Icarium /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Hrmf. I guess I'll have to hear Neilvg's. But I have the feeling Hytron 3D21As will remain my own magic bullet ;p I am thinking about getting speaker monoblocks designed around those with some nice mercury rectifiers and not sure what as driver tubes.

I personally consider the G08 to be profoundly filthy. So I don't doubt your DAC is vastly superior. But obviously me and you don't mesh exactly on lots of things ;p

Having heard the 3.0 GO... it is pretty damn impressive. But 30k is still a lot of money and like I've said previous... kind of over kill imo. We'll see what Neil thinks when he gets his.

However, APL has impressed me enough that I decided to be Alex Peychev's guinea pig for his up coming SA10/SA60/DV60 (DV60 for me) mod for an insanely killer price that I'm not supposed to disclose. There are a ton of features missing from the DV60 mod versus the NWO that I will seriously miss besides the less DACs per channel which I'm not sure really bothers me (Custom made capacitor coupled versus custom made R-core transformer coupled being one of the big differences. No USB functionality. And I thinkkk no pre-amp functionality is what this means "The unit will not have built-in remote controlled attenuator so a preamp or amp with volume control is a must."). Do I really need more than 6 DAC chips per channel in dual differential? I don't really think so ;p

Pricing in the end for the 3 units modded is something like:
The DV-60 would be $10.5K, SA-60 would be $9.5K. The SA-10 would be $8.5K with the same arrangement inside. (Difference is DV60 will do video. SA60 does not but does do dvd-a. The SA10 doesn't do dvd video or dvd-a but does do sacd and redbook).

The specs seem relatively similar to the APL modded Denon 3910 except for 2 main differences... 1. Better base unit duh (Esoteric versus Denon 3910). This matters most in regards to transport of course 2. Well this is really due to #1 as well, but the Esoteric will allow for a redesign that can actually be true balanced unlike anything based off the 3910.

Obviously a big step behind the NWO 3.0 GO stat wise... but how much of a difference will it be sound wise? I imagine the lack of transformer coupling will produce a quite noticeable different sound signature. I'm sure me and Neil will do some shootouts when my unit is done. Alex assures me that it will be the second best in digital reproduction, but of course he is somewhat biased ;p Still from what I've heard from his products I'm inclined to believe him ;p

P.S. He says the best digital he has after his products has consistently been the EMM Labs SE stack via his own experiences and blind shootouts which he says the sa10/sa60/dv60 line should best. He is also offering a transport only mod for the three units and the UX-1 which he believes will be good enough to put to rest any argument for computer based transports being caught up. We'll see
smily_headphones1.gif



The Mullards are magical and you really need to hear them. Far from being perfect but they bring out the best in the headphones with deep controlled bass, sweet, sweet midrange and an extended and clear top end.

I'm just waiting for a new drive in the G08 and then it will be out of the door. Does anybody need a mint condition G08 with a new drive??
wink.gif
I'm still deciding what I'm going for but it will be a modded universal player and the 3.0GO is high on the list but it's so expensive. The USD is very weak but is still costs about the same as a new car.
blink.gif
I might get one of the new players but I'd like a transformer coupled output so one of the older models might do it for me. I can live with a 3910 for a while and then have it converted to the 32bit DACs but I need to find a used one.

I want SE from my next amp as I'm moving away from the whole balanced thing and I'll install a transformer phase splitter in my Blue Hawaii to make it pseudo balanced but all future amps will have a SE input stage.

Btw. The P-01 and the older (U)X-01's do use the same transport.
 
Oct 28, 2007 at 8:01 PM Post #52 of 91

Icarium

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Yeah. Since you aren't a big balanced fiend like me. The 3910 will probably be just right up your alley. As frankly I'm still not 100 percent convinced my modded DV60 will sound significantly better, but I'll be the judge of that in a couple of months (God willing, not that I believe in a god).

http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....lay&1196811111

http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....lay&1198528033 <- This one is sold

Audiogon always has 1-3 up for sale. None of these seem totally maxed out. There was a brand new fully maxed one on APL forums that sold for I think for ~5.5k. But it did sell. The new revision that will be forthcoming basically involves changes necessary to utilize the 4397 chip, the 4397 chips and the ECC99 I believe output stage. Possibly some other things, but you'd have to ask Alex.
 
Oct 28, 2007 at 9:58 PM Post #53 of 91

spritzer

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I was big on balanced a few years back but it dawned on me that it simply isn't worth it. Extra components or all that.

I saw those 3910's and I even sent an offer on the cheaper one but it was sold. I'll have to talk to Alex about if the voltage can be changed with the linear PSU. I think the 3910 will work for me in the short term while I buy some more vintage DAC's to play with.

I'll eagerly wait for your DV60 impressions.
 
Oct 29, 2007 at 5:02 AM Post #54 of 91

Icarium

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I'm sure he can do the voltage swap.

I do love the stock Esoteric sound so much though....

Having a lot of fun with the UX-1 even if there are dodgy op amps performing the splitting for balanced sound. Listening to it I ask myself can things really get better.. then I remember the P03/D03 and NWO 3.0 GO and I realize yup. I only hope the dv60 can live to a fraction of the NWO 3.0 GO.
 
Oct 29, 2007 at 8:07 AM Post #56 of 91

spritzer

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The Esoteric sound is great as it's direct and clear. I think it's the rest of the player that is making the output stage sound so good. Esoteric made a lot of good engineering decisions in these players but the output just isn't one of them. It's the same with Sony SCD-1 and other statement players.

I'm currently searching for a 230v UX-1 so I can have it ready when the insanity strikes me and I order a NWO-3.0GO but until then I'll continue to collect vintage DAC's and buy a 3910. I think I have enough headphones for now...
wink.gif
 
Oct 30, 2007 at 11:35 AM Post #57 of 91

howiebrou

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Icarium /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Hrm, where are you getting your information that the P-01's VRDS is different from the X-01's (Not D2 but original and Limited. X-01 D2 definitely has the P03 transport) and presumably the UX-1/UX-1 Limited's? Not necessarily arguing with you, but my info says they have the same VRDS NEO though obviously there's significant difference in the rest of the transport implementations.

My info was from Alex Peychev of APL who has a partnership with Esoteric (Has met all their top people in the US and Japan and visited their facilities etc) and has opened up all their transports/units except for the latest latest (D2/pi/dv/sa60/sa10).



Just info from the local distributor. If your info is correct, does that mean they have in effect downgraded the D2's transport??
basshead.gif
 
Oct 31, 2007 at 6:31 AM Post #59 of 91

Icarium

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Quote:

Originally Posted by howiebrou /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Just info from the local distributor. If your info is correct, does that mean they have in effect downgraded the D2's transport??
basshead.gif



Yeah they did
frown.gif
To reduce cost since fabbing an aluminum/steel hybrid is still going to be cheaper than solid steel.

They compensated by adding 3 different DAC chipsets that you can select through which is a cool concept (But imo a person will settle on one) and raised the price.

Not that the P-03 transport is a slouch by any means. And the difference that hardcore of a transport is still somewhat debatable imo even though I dropped the extra bank for it. I mean the P-03s is probably still overkill... but in a way I love.

Supposedly the new UX-1Pi the next gen will have the same kind of deal
frown.gif


End of an era! Snatch up the older models while you can. Even if Esoteric stops repairs, Alex Peychev says he can keep the thing going for the rest of his lifetime if it somehow fails (He doesn't think it will outside the occasional alignment from a hard drop or a lubrication). Hell I want a second UX-1 ;p I somehow think they will be always available since not everyone is all about the NWOizing and stock the units do get obsoleted.

If you really are looking for one... I'd almost suggest trying to get a quote for how much changing the voltage is from Esoteric and buying one from Japan. I looked at used prices there and they are pretty killer... as these kinds of things are in Japan. Still can be tough to find, but its doable. I was going to go that route if I had a better grasp of the language.

One of the original versions of the X-01 (Maybe all X-01s non limited) has true balanced and uses op amps for the single ended. Not really sure about the details. You could ask on his forums to clarify that.
 
Oct 31, 2007 at 6:11 PM Post #60 of 91

vcoheda

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R10?

did you buy markl's R10s. if not, where did you get them. are you going to balance them.
 

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