The Stax Thread III
Apr 14, 2017 at 12:43 PM Post #11,866 of 20,660

astrostar59

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  darn (again lol) i found i have been wasteing many time for cheap bad sounding a USB DAC.
today i found cheap Marantz CD player sound much much better than my cheap USB DAC. darn
also i waste Suzuki-san(Chief Engineer of Stax)'s precious times by me asking him some my nonsense questions about it....darn
 
FYI Mac + some cheap USB DAC combo can waste your time and can sound badder than some cheap traditional CD Players. Stax HPs can hear its differences easily....so please be aware.
 
hope this someones helps.


This does not really apply in all cases. But generally to compete with a half decent CDP you need an well optimised PC with good PS and decent player software, and a good USB board in the DAC. It has got better of late, but there are still issues with many USB boards IMO, even in 2K+ DACs.
 
I dropped out of the USB chain for this reason TBH. Some fixers, convertors or de-crappiifiers help, but not IMO totally get rid of the USB 'issue'. It is the price and hassle factor we pay for having access to our libraries in an instant or via Tidal.
 
But with some work, you can get better SQ than most CDPs, remember a CDP is basically reading the same data at live speeds, so not totally perfect. And of course most CDPs use SPDIF not USB. I am past my CDP SQ now, definitely, no question.
 
Apr 14, 2017 at 1:27 PM Post #11,867 of 20,660

Pokemonn

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  darn (again lol) i found i have been wasteing many time for cheap bad sounding a USB DAC.
today i found cheap Marantz CD player sound much much better than my cheap USB DAC. darn
also i waste Suzuki-san(Chief Engineer of Stax)'s precious times by me asking him some my nonsense questions about it....darn
 
FYI Mac + some cheap USB DAC combo can waste your time and can sound badder than some cheap traditional CD Players. Stax HPs can hear its differences easily....so please be aware.
 
hope this someones helps.


This does not really apply in all cases. But generally to compete with a half decent CDP you need an well optimised PC with good PS and decent player software, and a good USB board in the DAC. It has got better of late, but there are still issues with many USB boards IMO, even in 2K+ DACs.
 
I dropped out of the USB chain for this reason TBH. Some fixers, convertors or de-crappiifiers help, but not IMO totally get rid of the USB 'issue'. It is the price and hassle factor we pay for having access to our libraries in an instant or via Tidal.
 
But with some work, you can get better SQ than most CDPs, remember a CDP is basically reading the same data at live speeds, so not totally perfect. And of course most CDPs use SPDIF not USB. I am past my CDP SQ now, definitely, no question.


Thank you for your advices astrostar.
yes my cheap used USB DAC was originally 2K+ MSRP DAC, cheap marantz/denon CDP sound much better than it.
I found a cheap marantz/denon CDP can be solution for the price. Current some marantz/denon CDP have USB A input on front panel. you can use it for iOS devices(less RF noise than big computers) for streaming play backs. so it can be best of both world(CD and internet) for the price tho. i fonund i prefer denon over marantz. marantz sound bit too bright for 009.
 
Apr 14, 2017 at 6:39 PM Post #11,868 of 20,660

Tinkerer

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Listening to an old Lambda Spirit that came in the mail today. I'm surprised how good it sounds out of the Carbon. The bass doesn't have quite the oomph of my 007 Mk I, but reaches down pretty deep. Little bit of elevation of the upper midrange/lower treble but nothing like the etch you see in some other lambda models.
 
All in all, I gotta say pretty darn great. Sometimes you forget that the right entry level stuff is still 90% as good as the flagships.
 
Apr 15, 2017 at 4:54 PM Post #11,869 of 20,660

Tinkerer

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On the opposite end, tried the 007 MK I through the little SRM-Xh and it still retains a lot of its character. Keeps the superior resolution, bass, and easy listening barely warm signature. As usual the Carbon just makes everything MORE. I'm looking forward to building a KG Golden reference PSU for the SRM-Xh out of some spare parts I have from my Circlotron build and see if that makes a major difference on the little amp. Actually, out of all the brand Stax amps, I've owned, this is one of the most neutral. It just doesn't have quite the same capabilities as say a T1 or a 717. Similar sound though. Doesn't sound like a 727 in the least and the 10S/12S are just a little darker and less resolved.
 
Don't know how it compares to the 252S. I would imagine they had to rework the circuit a bit for current production parts. But on the surface it looks like a general improvement across the board. Bigger pansonic caps, pots to adjust balance and offset (hardwired in Xh), RCA passthrough. Otherwise looks mostly the same.
 
Apr 15, 2017 at 8:13 PM Post #11,870 of 20,660

JimL11

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  On the opposite end, tried the 007 MK I through the little SRM-Xh and it still retains a lot of its character. Keeps the superior resolution, bass, and easy listening barely warm signature. As usual the Carbon just makes everything MORE. I'm looking forward to building a KG Golden reference PSU for the SRM-Xh out of some spare parts I have from my Circlotron build and see if that makes a major difference on the little amp. Actually, out of all the brand Stax amps, I've owned, this is one of the most neutral. It just doesn't have quite the same capabilities as say a T1 or a 717. Similar sound though. Doesn't sound like a 727 in the least and the 10S/12S are just a little darker and less resolved.
 
Don't know how it compares to the 252S. I would imagine they had to rework the circuit a bit for current production parts. But on the surface it looks like a general improvement across the board. Bigger pansonic caps, pots to adjust balance and offset (hardwired in Xh), RCA passthrough. Otherwise looks mostly the same.


From what others have reported, a better power supply will improve things to some extent.  However, you are going to have two basic limitations on sound quality.  First, the DC-DC converter used to change a low voltage 12V supply to the high voltage needed by the amp output will produce some noise, limiting your ultimate signal to noise ratio regardless of how quiet the Golden Ref PS is.  Second, the low standing current in the output stage, due to the limited heat sinking available in such a small amp, will limit the current drive available.  Depending on how loudly you listen this may or may not become an issue.  These two will limit the ultimate dynamic range available regardless of how overbuilt your Golden ref PS is.
 
Apr 16, 2017 at 8:12 AM Post #11,872 of 20,660

joehpj

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Yes, the Kgsshv Carbon with tubes, and Kelvin named it the "grounded Grid". One builder in Taiwan built this. Not sure about it sound, but not many were built yet. It is on sale in the forum too at an affordable price. I would grab it if I were you ^_^

This is Joe property and not mine

It's a project I ran with my friends. PM me if interested. :D Google "grounded grid" for more details. 
 
Apr 18, 2017 at 4:41 AM Post #11,877 of 20,660

milosz

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Has anyone seen a DIY T-2 for sale / sold?  I'm curious what price it would bring.
 
Apr 18, 2017 at 5:58 AM Post #11,879 of 20,660

astrostar59

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Has anyone seen a DIY T-2 for sale / sold?  I'm curious what price it would bring.

Sorry, miss read this, I'll start again.
 
Well finding a good T2 pre-built  DIY is going to be a challenge, as:
 
1. Not many built
2. If it is a good build, I doubt it would be for sale (general terms) but is possible I guess.
3. It is very difficult to build, and to not know the history or the builder / trust the builder and or seller 100% you could be walking into a nightmare
4. It ain't going to be cheap, maybe 8K upwards easily.
 
Sorry, don't want to sound negative. If I was wanting a DIY T2 I would spend time finding a builder who has built other KG amps first, then ask if they would be prepared to built one. i.e. buy it from new. Or buy one already built by a builder well respected and known for great work over at the other place. Building a T2 is not a light undertaking.
 
Apr 18, 2017 at 6:47 AM Post #11,880 of 20,660

paradoxper

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He wasn't inquiring about the SRM-T2.
 

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