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I think it is more of a warm up than break in.
Happy new owner of GMB Gen5 here. After many months of research and consideration finally pulled the trigger and took delivery yesterday.
Right now, I have them in my basic setup
PC -> (USB) -> GMB -> (SE) -> Jot -> (Balanced) -> HD600
Compared with Jot's AK4490, it made a noticeable difference that was initially difficult to point at. The most obvious change was richer bass that creates better support of the music (kind of like adding a sub to your 2ch stereo). It's not like an eq'ed bass but it seems to provide more substance. My novice ears can't quite comprehend the other changes but my impression is that 1) GMB gives a more panoramic sound, and 2) it's almost like enhancing the music by 1dB (not 3dB) while silencing the silence by 1dB. It made it much easier to hear the difference in 24/96 vs 16/44 samples from http://www.2l.no/hires/.
For other stuff, the intro of Sawanohiroyuki[nZk]'s "e of s" with guitar/synth and panning drums sounds great making it spacious and panoramic in GMB. Also, listening to Berliner Philharmoniker & Karajan's Beethoven 9 symphonies and Martha Argerich's various piano works, I'm immersed deeper into music while picking up on details and atmosphere. All in all, loving the experience so far!
As a side note, I also give credit to AK4490 implementation in Jot. It's no slouch.
Once I catch up building the necessary cables, I'm going to try balanced connection from GMB to Jot. I also need to experiment with my other rigs (Stax, Bottlehead, and Rotel/B&W CM8). Should be fun.
How long have you had it? It does take a while to reach its peak. So better may be yet to come for you.
I think the consensus I've read is the GMB takes a few days of warmth, not playing continuous music, to really open up.
Others have reported a significant change in the sound (for the better!) at that point.
I leave my GMB powered on all the time, unless lightening storms threaten to strike.
So my previous impression was at roughly 24 hours. Now past 80 hours, unfortunately, my impression with HD600 remains relatively the same. Now I officially hate HD600. It doesn't seem to show the GMB benefit very well. I need a better dynamic can... I'm still new to this thread so maybe this point has already been beaten to death
With my basic Stax with GMB compared to Stax with Jot/DAC pre-out, it's a different story now. With GMB, there's much more clarity, like taking the veil off the entire music. Extensions low and high and panoramic sound (like the field of view expanding from 120deg to 160deg). My favorite acoustic guitars by Pierre Bensusan, Tommy Emmanuel, and Andy McKee were crisp, dynamic, and spacious. Rampal and Kudo's flute duet in Cimarosa's concerto brings out colors of each flute and other instruments. Choir by Libera, very nice.
I had to try Norah Jones' "Don't know why." I'm not a fan of her music but since so many people talk about it in reviews, I use it to correlate my hearing with others. What was strange about this piece is that her voice seemed very accentuated with GMB, as if the middle A frequency and octave around it is boosted. Maybe this is intentional with the filter used? Or maybe there is specific harmonic distortion in sigma-delta converters that muddles this frequency range (hence the clarity in GMB)? I didn't have any other female vocal tracks with a similar outcome. Quite curious about this...
Anyways, love the sound now
@Ojisan .... I have HD650 (currently) with GMB/MJ2, and IME using balanced cables helped to lift the Senn's SQ considerably .. however, like you, it's time to move on for me and I've heard that the new Aeon Flow Open is a worthwhile upgrade for HD650 owners and a good match with the GMB/MJ2 and with the right (NOS) tubes. The AFO are due to arrive next week and I'm looking forward to hearing them with my Schiit stack.
@Charente Very nice, hope to hear your impressions with the new combo! For me, everything sounds so right now with GMB/Stax L300, I'm enjoying my music.
Hi guys! I'm preparing to buy a Gumby very soon and, being on a very very tight budget, I'm undecided if I should also buy the PYST USB cable or not. I will use a laptop as a source, but only a few months later (my cd player as a transport until then). Can you please share your impressions on the PYST, is there any sonic advantage at all over a generic ultra-cheap USB cable?
No theory, please, I don't care for "should not", "there's no way" etc. arguments, only direct experiences. Thanks!
As long as it's a true USB 2.0 class cable you'll be fine. I believe Jason said he uses printer USB cables.
Really loving my brand new Gumby! It's an amazing piece of Schiit kit! Running an MJ2 with some NOS WE tubes through it and a Curious USB cable.
I found these to be okay USB cables ... both around the same price ...
Oyaide NEO d+: Class A USB 2.0
I by my USB cables for about $2-3 from Monoprice here in the US. They work fine. If Monoprice doesn't distribute wherever you live look for an equivalent. Since you're on a tight budget you can upgrade later if you really feel the need. I'll bet you love Gumby so much you won't think you need to change the USB cables for a long time.
Thank you all for your replies!
Still, anyone heard a sound difference between PYST and generic cable? I knew about Jason's use of a printer cable, it's just I wanted to hear about some other experiences, if possible. Thx!
I have QED USB cable, Forza audio USB cable and I have also tried just some cheap 0.99$ USB cable. There is no difference. So there is no difference in sound quality between PYST and generic. Just buy a decent cable and your done!