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Thoughts on a bunch of DACs (and why delta-sigma kinda sucks, just to get you to think about stuff)

Discussion in 'Dedicated Source Components' started by purrin, Dec 5, 2013.
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  1. conquerator2

    Yeah, except not all D-S sounds that way.
    Hell, not even all Sabres.
    My current doesn't. I do agree that the D-S can sound shrill, but making it a given is untue :rolleyes:
  2. hodgjy
    Agreed.  I once had a 1-bit Sony CD player that was smooth and silky.  I had a Technics CD player that would pierce your ears.  My Schiit Bifrost Uber is pretty smooth, too.  No shrill or glare at all.  There's a little grain, but nothing to worry too much about in the less than $1000 bracket.
  3. conquerator2

    On a similar note I'd recommend the Gustard X12 who wants to try something smooth but tonally between Gungnir and analytic/edgy Sabre.
    This is real smooth! XMOS USB. Price. It is my current DAC and I am real impressed! :)
  4. coli
    Found this 2010 post
    "Equipment from cold is a different matter and it depends on the design I think.. A Quad 33/303 was tested and shown to take 15 minutes from cold before settling fully down (I suspect the 303 mainly from my experience) and that was forty years ago, my AVI stuff was "there" withing a couple of minutes. The Crowns don't need warm-up, yet both Quad 405-2's I owned (both fully serviced) needed seven to eight hours from switch-on to lose a slight "sting" in the sound. Older multi-bit CD players need a couple of hours at least and many prefer to be left on 24/7 if at al possible."
  5. jacal01
    I've been lobbying for a sarcastic icon for years.  Best I can do is lotsa winky faces.  My jibes tend to have barbs.
    reddog likes this.
  6. purrin
    Absolutely makes sense. There a longer term listening aspect to these things. Sometimes gear that wows and impresses upon first listen gets tiring and annoying after repeated listens. Sometimes we don't get the understated aspects of sublime awesomeness... until we go back to something less. With more experience, listening to a lot of different gear, we can learn to filter out the initial "wow" effect and easier identify the more subtle qualities of gear. More on this in the last paragraph below.
    Haha! I thought my setup was a bit too warm! At least from Saturday to Sunday afternoon with the Psvane WE275 tubes. It's hard to say. The Theta Gen V is warmer and was used Saturday morning. The Yggy sounded lean on Saturday and got warmer sounding Sunday afternoon. When this started happening, I switched to brighter sounding but more resolving vintage Sylvania and Hytron 2A3s. My setup was brightest sounding right around this change around Sunday noon or a little bit after. The tubes need a little bit of time (15 minutes to an hour) to not sound brittle. I felt the setup sounded best around 5:00pm on Sunday before the show was over. Yeah, I'm that OCD. And yes, tubes warm up quicker than solid-state stuff.
    Schiit had their Yggy on about the same time, a little bit earlier actually. I was running v0.99, Schiit was running v1.00. There is some suspicion that v1.00 warms up quicker. (This is not worth exploring because the recommendation is just to leave the darn thing on and 1.00 will be the production version anyways.) Jason and I actually talked about doing crazy stuff like in hauling the Yggy plugged into a power inverter attached to a car battery. 
    I'll go out a limb here and note one very very crucial thing: no one, I repeat no one, at the meet, including myself heard what the Yggy could really do. Maybe hints and spurts here and there. 48-50 hours is just getting started. After 90-120 hours and something really incredible happens. It's subtle, you press play, sounds good as usual, bob your head, and suddenly, it hits you, you realize... OMFG. What. Tears of joy or piss on the floor.
    It's my sincere wish you guys your get Yggys soon and experience this. (BTW, I don't currently have an Yggy, I'm waiting in line like the rest of you guys. As I've said, it was made very clear that the unit provided for me was a loaner and could be taken back at any time.)
  7. conquerator2
    Well, that's 5 days... Seems like this thing is either on at all times or nothing then [​IMG]
    Some dedication required for sure [​IMG]
  8. purrin
    Interesting. Not just an R2R, but an R2R + string hybrid. String architectures have even more resistors per bit than R2R. 
  9. purrin
    Well, they did make the power switch extremely inconvenient to get to. (People were bitching about it in the Rag/Yggy thread.) Probably a reason why.
  10. negura
    The EC 2A3 amp - is that basically a 2A3MK4 with different (than Hammonds) interstage transformers? And out of interest which one is clearer/brighter sounding between the Rag and the 2A3? 
    I myself prefer solid statey sounding tube amps, and the other way around for solid states. Without going overboard.
  11. Maxx134
    I have to say this has been one of, if not the most informative thread on dacs on HeadFi so thank Purrin for all your input..

    Also I like to note an aspect of sound I haven't seen mentioned yet.
    Many members associating bit depth only with dynamic range and then talk about louder sounds "masking" smaller...

    But music is just not that simple..

    You can have a bass note so loud it can shake your guts while still hear the drummer's high hat sizzle bucause we are talking differnt frequencies so amplitude (masking) is not that easily a factor..

    Indeed, a good recording engineer will make sure the singer's vocal frequencies are not masked by instrunemts recorded in that similar frequency spectrum..
    by usage of not only tonality changes but their placement in the stereo image..

    So to say their will be any "masking" of details, is to me, very naive and unrealistic.
    Whatever specific range of frequencies that could be masked at any instant or point in time, is also subject to the brains correction/interpretation by using the other channel(ear) which would contain the ambient information needed, because nothing is monural as we are talking about stereo 3D image..

    I feel like I generalized and opened up a can of questions,
    but bottom line is that nothing is that simple, when it comes to faithfully reproducing the original sonic image.
    Argo Duck likes this.
  12. wahsmoh

    I did go a bit far to lump all D-S chips into the shrill digital sounding group. I would say though that the Yulong DA8, Ayre Codex, Mytek192, and Geek Pulse Infinity + LPS4 were all wonderful sounding for D-S chips. Still, I don't think they could light a candle next to the Yggdrasil or the 90's R2R DACs when it comes to effortless smooth sound. I'd only own one for DSD playback and even then there are better options out there
  13. Stillhart
    Barring the LH Labs products, which are laughably optimistic on the MSRP, you're comparing some very expensive R2R DAC's to D-S DAC's that cost half as much or less.  I have yet to see any R2R proponents suggesting things that cost less than a grand.  
    Yes, we all realize your Ferrari is better than my WRX in almost every way.  But for a normal mortal, the WRX is pretty great performance for the money!
    I know this thread is about SQ in absolute terms, so price isn't really a factor.  But I feel like the R2R proponents sometimes forget that we can't all afford the Yggy or Theta or whatever.  Maybe you've forgotten how bad some DACs can get... when's the last time you tried using your Abyss right out of your laptop or phone, even with a nice amp?
    Sorry, it just rubs me the wrong way a little bit when people are so dismissive of the ONLY DAC's available under $1000.
    conquerator2 likes this.
  14. estreeter
    Exactly how where you hooking that battery up to the Yggy when you had the latter reaction ?  [​IMG]
  15. wahsmoh

    I doubt I could even compare the pricing of the Progeny or any older R2R in absolute terms to the pricing of a car. The Progeny takes parts from a $6000+ DAC when it was brand new and utilizes them in a single-ended setup while still having two separate transformers for analog and digital section. The Progeny when new was $1000-1200. It still kicks the crap out of the newer DACs in terms of absolute sound quality and PCB design.
    I'm not going to elaborate any further but we can all bow down to Schiit and Mike and Jason for even attempting such a daring feat at less than $5000. ($2300) man that is a bargain considering you get 4 chips that each cost over $80 a piece in dual mono
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