TOTALDAC DAC
Jul 10, 2016 at 7:02 AM Post #526 of 581

paradoxper

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  I can't find ANYONE who has not liked the TotalDAC which ever model, reviewers or owners. Many owners do upgrade in the TotalDAC family, but that is a good thing not bad IMO. I have stayed in the Audio Note family because it gives me everything I want. TotalDAC would be my second choice for sure. The Dual is £7.5K as has been compared to many DACs at 20K. 
 
Paradoxper, you could try PM'ing Preproman as he had a TotalDAC dual on a 2 week home demo and also owned the EMMlabs DAC 2X for a long time.

Yes, Prep. I forgot about his retired ass. IIRC he said the EMM was the best he'd ever heard. I'll hit him up.
 
Jul 10, 2016 at 8:07 AM Post #527 of 581

astrostar59

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  Yes, Prep. I forgot about his retired ass. IIRC he said the EMM was the best he'd ever heard. I'll hit him up.

Ask him about the sound signature, I am thinking the EMM is detailed / impressive but the TotalDAC is smooth and more real sounding. 13K Euros for a Six inc Server is a great combo. All in one system, job done. I have convertors, wires and power supplies all over the shop for this function...
 
Jul 10, 2016 at 8:32 AM Post #528 of 581

astrostar59

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  Yes, Prep. I forgot about his retired ass. IIRC he said the EMM was the best he'd ever heard. I'll hit him up.

There is Elberoth you could talk to as well. He had the MSB Stack IV plus clocks at 30K and seemed to prefer the TotalDAC Dual.
 
http://audioshark.org/computer-digital-audio-11/totaldac-reference-d1-1342.html#.VRLOKuFTrT8
 
​He later went onto the Lampi GG which I also looked at used.
 
Jul 10, 2016 at 11:10 AM Post #529 of 581

paul79

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Plaskin at Audio Stream reviewed several DAC's and his conclusion is the Totaldac is the best he's heard yet. Mike Lavorgna at Audiostream as well has been gaga over every Totaldac he has reviewed. These are of course reviewers, but they seem to lay out comparisons in their reviews better than anyone else in their field. Check out their favorite greatest bits section.
 
This guy owned the MSB Diamond fully loaded, demoed the Vivaldi, could obviously have any DAC he wants, and chose the 4 box Totaldac Twelve:
 
https://systems.audiogon.com/systems/5045
 
They really are like picking out a turntable for your budget. None of them are plagued with the typical digital issues. You just have to decide, how much resolution and performance do you want?
 
I have had a fair amount of DAC's here also, and have had the D1 Dual, D1 Monobloc, and now the D1 Twelve 4 box.
DAC's I have had through here:
Chord 2Qute EX and Chord 2Qute HD
Auralic Vega
APL DSD-S
MSB Analog
Bel Canto DAC3.5VB MKII
W4S DAC2
Sony HAP-Z1ES
Ayre Codex
Burson DA-160
 
These aren't the highest end DAC's but all are or were the Company top of the line with exception to the Chord's and the MSB Analog.
 
Simply put, none of them would touch the Totaldac D1 Dual.
 
Jul 14, 2016 at 9:26 PM Post #530 of 581

cat6man

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I tested the Rendu it did sound better than the Totaldac Server but once I had an upgrade done on the
Totaldac server the Rendu wasn't even close .

 
i've heard other confirm that.
in each case, they were using the rendu in MPD or LMS mode.
i recently did a comparison of NAA mode vs. MPD and it was night and day.
you haven't heard the rendu until you try NAA mode (which moves the renderer off of the rendu so all it has to do is pass clean data to the dac).
massive, instantly obvious improvements in detail, soundstage, bass and ability to listen into the decay of notes.
 
so i would say the rendu MPD mode is nowhere close to the rendu in NAA mode.
where it stands versus vincent's server is still an open question for me.
unfortunately i do not have vincent's server available to compare but i'm hoping someone out there can.
i summarized my tests on CA forum.
 
p.s. since i discovered this yesterday, i am one happy camper!
 
Jul 14, 2016 at 10:00 PM Post #532 of 581

a1uc

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  Plaskin at Audio Stream reviewed several DAC's and his conclusion is the Totaldac is the best he's heard yet. Mike Lavorgna at Audiostream as well has been gaga over every Totaldac he has reviewed. These are of course reviewers, but they seem to lay out comparisons in their reviews better than anyone else in their field. Check out their favorite greatest bits section.
 
This guy owned the MSB Diamond fully loaded, demoed the Vivaldi, could obviously have any DAC he wants, and chose the 4 box Totaldac Twelve:
 
https://systems.audiogon.com/systems/5045
 
They really are like picking out a turntable for your budget. None of them are plagued with the typical digital issues. You just have to decide, how much resolution and performance do you want?
 
I have had a fair amount of DAC's here also, and have had the D1 Dual, D1 Monobloc, and now the D1 Twelve 4 box.
DAC's I have had through here:
Chord 2Qute EX and Chord 2Qute HD
Auralic Vega
APL DSD-S
MSB Analog
Bel Canto DAC3.5VB MKII
W4S DAC2
Sony HAP-Z1ES
Ayre Codex
Burson DA-160
 
These aren't the highest end DAC's but all are or were the Company top of the line with exception to the Chord's and the MSB Analog.
 
Simply put, none of them would touch the Totaldac D1 Dual.


I had a hard time letting go of my vinyl setup , I kept trying DACS and none of them made me want to let go of my turntable until the Totaldac.  I also went from a D1 Dual to Monobloc to 4 box Twelve . As soon as I heard the D1 Dual I sold my turntable and never looked back . The only thing I would like to hear is the Dave just to see what all the hype is about .
 
Jul 29, 2016 at 3:26 AM Post #534 of 581

astrostar59

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  Totaldac user are a bit too brave in our eyes, almost no specs at all, no thd+n, no snr, nearly nothing shows. Fill them up, Vincent.


Specs on DACs are almost irrelevant as THD is vanishingly low for example. The tech specs have also been used by the industry as sales spin for years backing up the over sampling con.
 
It is how it sounds that is crucial. IMO the NOS architecture is going to make the TotalDAC buyer rethink his previous DAC purchases and preconceptions. That and the fact it has no chip set.
 
Aug 2, 2016 at 3:09 AM Post #536 of 581

astrostar59

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Not site if Vincent has improved the tube version but the output on it was a low 1.65V which may cause problems in some systems. Most reviews comparing the 2 seems to prefer the SS version.
 
Aug 4, 2016 at 3:32 PM Post #537 of 581

cat6man

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The diffrence for me from the dual to the monoblocks was not anywhere as huge as from the monoblocks to the twelve , I would like to hear the six also curious

 
do the monoblocks have an active output stage or are they direct output like the twelve?
i'm wondering if the magic is in the direct output?
(assuming of course you have enough gain with direct output to drive your system)
 
Aug 4, 2016 at 3:39 PM Post #538 of 581

cat6man

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with my d1-dual, i much prefer the balanced output to single ended, both to my BHSE/Stax009 headphone setup and my Ayon/Nola speaker system.
 
has anyone compared the balanced/single ended outputs of the six?
 
now i know the d1-dual balanced has an advantage at the start since their is a r2r ladder for each side and you lose half the resistors with the regular single ended ouput.
in the six, there are 3 ladders per output in single ended, so i would expect that to improve significantly over d1-dual single ended.
in the six, the 3 ladder per output signal is also actively amplified for a balanced output, but i might expect the balanced/single ended performance to be closer than for the d1-dual since balanced no longer adds for resistive ladders to the  processing.
 
has anyone have comparisons of the following or observations on relative performance?
 
1.  d1-dual single ended
2.  d1-dual balanced
3.  d1-six single ended
4.  d1-six balanced
 
Oct 14, 2016 at 7:15 PM Post #539 of 581

paul79

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do the monoblocks have an active output stage or are they direct output like the twelve?
i'm wondering if the magic is in the direct output?
(assuming of course you have enough gain with direct output to drive your system)


All of the Totaldac DAC's have active output stage, except for the Twelve. Yes, this contributes to a more transparent sound and a lower noise floor.
 
The D1 Dual is best served from the balanced outputs, and Vincent also offers external transformers to convert balanced to single ended (RCA) so that you may still make full use of the D1 Dual capabilities.
 
With the Six, it is not supposed to matter which output you use for best results, but I cannot say as I have no experience with the Six. I very much trust Vincent and his descriptors though, as he as always been spot on in this regard.
 
Oct 15, 2016 at 6:00 AM Post #540 of 581

nepherte

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Can anybody elaborate on the differences between the d1-dual and the d1-six (both technical and sound wise)? I got the d1-dual a while ago and am very happy about it. Have yet to hear a dac that makes me want to change. However, ever since the d1-six came out, I can't help but wonder... After I got the d1-dual, there seem to have been made various improvements (output stage, psu, ...), all of which also ended up in the d1-six.
 

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