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TOTALDAC DAC

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by khaos974, May 12, 2011.
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  1. romaz
    This is correct.  I tried the default configuration of JRiver/JPlay but I found the ASIO driver that came with the TotalDac superior.  This combined with ROON was better yet.
     
  2. romaz
     
    Here is a photo of the inside of my master DAC unit (the left channel monobloc).  The switch to convert from monobloc to dual is circled in red in the upper right corner.  The "dual" chip is circled in red on the right side of the photo and is currently in place.  The "mono" chip is presently sitting on a piece of velcro in the mid/lower section of the photo.  The words are hard to read but they say "dual" and "mono" on them.  Notice the large copper plate at the base of the DAC.  This is a solidly built unit with very little that can go wrong over time since there are no moving parts or tubes to replace and no excessive heat production.  French savoir faire.
     
     
    d1-dualconfig.jpg
     
  3. nepherte
     
    So while the the CAT doesn't have a 'reclocker', it does have 2 high precision clocks built-in. Sounds almost like a reclocker to me :) That would also explain why the Totaldac reclocker doesn't add much value to your CAT and begs the question if you really need both (obviously, with the monoblocks you can't live without but it is still relevant for the dual). If you only consider SQ, then perhaps. If you take price into account, then perhaps not. That is a question each has to answer for himself.
     
     
     
    That would probably be me. When I first demonstrated Roon to @bmichels, he was like "whuuut?" :D I may have swayed him over to the dark side though.
     
     
     
    And I agree wholeheartedly with you on this one. The only downside of the Totaldac is the software it comes with. Or I should rather say, the remote software by which you can control the server. I am a long-time linux user and have strictly used MPD (music player daemon) to play back music. It is arguably the best music player, and surprise surprise, that is what the Totaldac uses. If it weren't for Roon, this configuration would fit perfectly in my current system. When listening to music, I am mostly working on my linux workstation and I would be able to control the Totaldac in the same way as I'm controlling my local MPD instance. The downside of MPD is the ability to use remote controls on smartphones or tablets. That software is as you so eloquently describe "3rd rate software". My only hope is headless linux builds of Roon and/or RoonSpeakers. When that officially comes out, I will definitely ping Vincent. He seemed very reluctant about this, but if all else fails, I would be willing to take a shot at it myself.
     
     
     
    I admit that I initially viewed these sources - be it Totaldac, CAT or any other source - as "yet another computer" that plays back music. Based on your findings, I will probably have to revise this opinion and have a listen myself. And it looks like Scott has taken this to the next level with his CAT (or at least technically since I have yet to listen to it).
     
  4. nepherte

    How do you connect the HE1000 to the monoblocks? Do you use a 2x 3-pin XLR, each 3-pin XLR into the output of a monoblock via an adapter?
     
  5. bmichels
     
    YES it is all your fault ! I you should be a shame [​IMG] ...
     
    BTW, I purchased ROON now, and I find one problem:  The TIDAL "full" integration may be a strengh, but I also find it confusing: when I browse albums for example, I do not know anymore what is local and what is available from Tidal. I get lost not knowing what is mine and what is not. -->  Is there a way to get the local albums highlighted (like a red frame around the cover art, or something else) ?
     
  6. ptcl
    This German review focusing on the Totaldac server/reclocker can be translated by Google.  It may be informative.
     
    http://www.hifistatement.net/tests/item/1455-totaldac-d1-server?start=1
     
  7. romaz
    I don't completely agree.  I think @Yoga would tell you that it's better to shoot it properly in the field than to have to fix it in post.  Same thing applies here.  Clocking it properly at the beginning of the chain is better than having to reclock it later in the chain.  It would seem to me that something ultimately gets lost in the translation and amounts to more of a patch up job.  
     
    I believe this is what separates the Aurender N10 from the X100/N100.  The main difference is the N10 has a sophisticated clock and the X100/N100 do not and having heard each of these machines, the N10 is quite a bit better than the X100/N100.  I haven't tried this but I would be surprised if you can make an X100/N100 sound as good as an N10 using something like a USB Regen or TotalDac reclocker.
     
  8. romaz
     
    I now belong to this camp of ROON groupies [​IMG].  The user experience is simply excellent.
     
  9. romaz
     
    MPD is more 2nd rate while iPeng is 3rd rate.  I can live with MPD but it's hard to live with iPeng because the SQ is a noticeable step less.  Since I do a lot of Tidal streaming, this has become a big deal.  The fact that there is a difference in SQ between the two leaves me to wonder that with proper software, the TotalDac server could sound even better, maybe even CAT good.  The problem is that this area of remote software design doesn't appear to be Vincent's strength or at least his priority.  If you could improve on this, you would make a lot of people very happy.
     
  10. romaz
     
    You and me both.
     
  11. romaz
     
    I connect via dual 3-pin FEMALE XLR.  Most dual 3-pin XLR headphone cables are MALE which is why you can't use off the shelf cables.  You can buy an adapter from Vincent although they are pretty expensive.  You can get a very good quality cable from Moon Audio (Silver Dragon for most headphones and Black Dragon for the HD800) for less than the price of his adapter alone.  Obviously, Peter at DHC can make a cable with these terminations and many would say his are the best, I know I do.
     
    With the d1-dual, you have the option of using the 6.35mm port which in a pinch, is a nice secondary option.  With the monoblocs, these ports are non-functional.
     
  12. Beolab
    OT

    What are your thaughts how the new Chord Dace will stand up against the TotalDAC Dual or the mono blocks?
     
  13. romaz
    You will know which is a Tidal track or album because there is a small "T" in the corner of the cover art.  You can also set a filter where you view only your albums or view only Tidal albums.  It works very well.
     
  14. romaz
    Hard to say.  Some here really like the Hugo and TT and I am among that group although I do not feel either are near the level of even the TotalDac d1-single in terms of richness of tone.  As Chord's statement DAC, I expect the DAVE to be much better but I suspect it will still have the Chord house sound and so it will come down to personal preference.  To me, the TotalDac house sound is deep rich tone.  Very vivid (but not artificial) color contrasts against a very black background.  The monoblocs do everything the dual does well but to a greater extent.  The key separator, however, is a greater sense of dimensional space.  With that said, I very much want to hear the DAVE.  I especially like the look of the polished sterling model that I saw in a photo.
     
  15. Rotijon
    Romaz,

    That was quite the impression, it was very very helpful.

    One thing im quite curious about is, why not go for the d-twelve since those have about 50% more resistors compared to the monoblocks and its only 25% more in terms of price. This is assuming vincent is still ok with you trading it in for a better one.

     
     
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