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About bhobba

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    Seriously DAC Addicted
  • Birthday 17/11/55

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    Redland Bay
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  1. LenehanAudio Loudspeaker Design Thread

    I occasionally chat to Mike about speaker design issues. I can usually understand what Mike says being a bit technically minded. I mention to Mike though my knowledge taps out at Vance Dickinson's The Loudspeaker Design Cookbook which I read many years ago. Mike says - I read that. Without doubt he like me read it many years ago - but has gone way way beyond it since then. Even with my background there are some things Mike says that are way over my head - knowledge just seems to ooze out of him - and that's not his 'secret' stuff such as his own port alignment, and how the PRC crossover works. But it works - his crossovers are the best I have heard and his port alignment is the only ported design I have head I really like - mostly I prefer transmission line (which are hard to find). Mikes ported designs sound like transmission line to me - how he does it beats me. The only snippet he let slip one day - is - most textbooks and other designers have got it wrong. I was at Caxton Audio one day and David (the owner) said to me - Bill you know Mike. I said - yes - but that's not exactly hard - many customers do. The in whispers - why do his speakers sound so good. I said - no secret. Well what is it? From many many years of experience he has learnt a lot - things other designers may not even know. Somehow that didn't satisfy him. There is also another secret. Never, ever skip on what you use inside a speaker. He always uses low gauge air coiled inductors and at least Erse capacitors. You may think any decent manufacturer would do that. But having seen the insides of some very famous speakers I will not name that cant be said of many, or perhaps even most speakers. And no - I am not speaking of B&W (people know I am often critical of that very famous brand) - many years ago they did but these days use air cored inductors and good capacitors like Mundorf. Thanks Bill
  2. Actually the 103 or 203. I use the 103 and its cheap if you can still find it - run out sale a while back as it was replaced by the 203. Thanks Bill
  3. GIESELER Groß DAC official release

    Just let me know the day/time and I will come down. We can catch up. Hopefully the DSJ will be fixed by then and you can borrow that. If not then you may be able to borrow an actual DS. Either way you can try MQA. See what you think. Thanks Bill
  4. GIESELER Groß DAC official release

    Google is your friend - do a search on Miska HQPlayer. Its the best sounding player I have yet heard largely because he really understands up-sampling etc. Requires a lot of horsepower though. Going from 88.2 to DXD I store most of my files in is nothing - beyond that and you need considerable grunt - something like an I7 4 core. Thanks Bill
  5. MQA on non-MQA DAC

    You can compare the same master in many different formats here: http://www.2l.no/hires/ They all sound different - well at least to me. On those I prefer MQA to the rest - even DXD. But its not what I would call a fair dinkum test - IMHO it was specifically selected to showcase MQA. Not everyone thinks MQA is the WOW, utterly fantastic thing the marketing blurb says it is. There are technical reasons for that - and why you may prefer the up-sampled Audirvana rather than actual MQA decoding - but I will only go into it if people are interested. You should probably be able to figure it out for yourself from the following anyway: http://www.audiomisc.co.uk/MQA/origami/ThereAndBack.html http://www.aes.org/tmpFiles/elib/20171211/17501.pdf To quote the first link: A particular problem can arise from the use of MQA when we wish to consider its performance by doing a listening comparison. We can imagine setting up a test where we carry out an ‘ABC’ comparison. Here ‘A’ would be the original 192k rate file, ‘B’ would be the 96k rate version produced via MQA folding for transmission or storage, and ‘C’ would be the unfolded 192k rate output from ‘unfolding’ ‘B’. Various outcomes may arise from a controlled subjective listening comparison. And the outcome might, in practice, vary from case to case. The difficulty is that both ‘B’ and ‘C’ tend to have added aliases, and that ‘B’ also has a changed spectral balance from having been filtered. Hence we can expect that ‘B’ might sound different to ‘A’ even if a conventional down-conversion would have sounded the same as ‘A’! One particularly interesting outcome is that we might find that ‘A’ and ‘C’ sound different. If this is the case, then it can presumably only be due to some combination of an alteration in the spectral/temporal response of the original components present in ‘A’ with the effect of having added the aliased components into ‘C’ which were absent in ‘A’. The sound of ‘C’ might be preferred to that of ‘A’. If this can occur then we may run the risk of those producing such files sometimes choosing to deliberately alter the chosen filters, etc, to ‘enhance’ the sound. i.e. using MQA as an ‘effect’ rather than a way to preserve fidelity to an original. On the other hand, if ‘A’ and ‘C’ sound the same then it is possible that there wasn’t actually that much audible HF present that needed ‘folding’ in the first place and a conventional downcoversion would also have sounded fine. Having abandoned keeping to the Sampling Theorem, the results become a matter of subjective opinion, and the creator of the individual MQA file or stream may have some control over this judgement. It then becomes a question of whether each listener likes the result or not. In some ways the creator of an MQA file is placed in the position of being a ‘magician’ who has to know how to get the best sound from an existing recording. Unfortunately, the music business has a mixed track record in such matters. For example, the tendency to equate ‘good’ sound with ‘sells well’ which has led to many Audio CDs being level compressed and clipped to be LOUD on the basis that this ‘sells more CDs’. What MQA does is trade time smear for ultrasonic aliasing components. These are theoretically inaudible. However in a NOS DAC they have aliasing components well into the megahertz region - the 0-22k frequency recorded gets reflected like a mirror to 44k, then reflected again and again forever (that's Shannon's Sampling Theorem for the technobabble types like me). Most who hear NOS DAC's find they have a different sound - some love it - some don't. Same here - while those ultrasonic components in MQA are inaudible like the NOS DAC, it will have an effect on sound (it may for example cause beats in your amp from small non linearities, or test it's slew rate) - some liking it - some not liking it. It has sharper temporal resolution all right but it's a personal preference thing which sounds better. Up-sampling it using Audirvana removes the ultrasonic aliasing component as the cost of some extra temporal blur. Its a personal preference thing which you prefer. Thanks Bill
  6. SACD questions

    Exactly - and technically its not the most efficient way to store music. I have converted a lot of SACD rips to PCM. I use the following program: https://www.xivero.com/xifeo/ First I convert it to DXD - it's usually a bit bigger than the SACD - you expect that though as DXD was invented as the format you convert DSD into, do the editing, then convert back. You do not want any degradation in doing that so its way over specified. Then I run it though XIFEO - its my truth program - you see exactly whats going on. In some cases its simply up-sampled 44.1/24 - in others it's genuine HD but much of the time doesn't go over 30K - a few will go up to 35 or even 40k - only very very rarely past that. So I downsample it to 88.2k, and run it through XIFEO again. It's size then is MUCH smaller the the original SACD file. If you are after better sound check out MQA and Tidal. Meridian makes a very cheap, but surprisingly good DAC for that purpose (I have one myself) http://www.noisymotel.com/product.asp?ProductID=866 Get a little converter eg: https://www.officeworks.com.au/shop/officeworks/p/comsol-3-5mm-stereo-male-to-2-x-rca-female-audio-adaptor-co352rcaad And use some good cables - you will be surprised at the quality you get. If you like MQA then look into getting a better DAC - otherwise sell it and you haven't lost much. BTW don't believe the hype about MQA - not everyone agrees it's better - I could explain why but that will take us too far from the purpose of this thread. Many go Ga Ga over it (I am one) - to some - blah. Only you can decide which camp you are in. If you like it then there is a large and growing library of all sorts of MQA stuff on Tidal - much more than is available in SACD. I also must mention I did a comparison of SACD Diana Krall - Wallflower (run through my program of course - it was simply upsampled 44.1/24), 44.1 normal release, and MQA on Tidal. I preferred the MQA - but not everyone did. So you must check it out for yourself. Thanks Bill
  7. Heard and owned both - except Clay upgraded my NAD to a linear supply which improved it quite a bit. The Klein is better by a long way IMHO. If you want HDMI inputs get an Oppo - its what I use - works great. Then save up for a Grob - its simply drop dead good - took out a $9k Direct Stream. I have a DS as well, and the DS enthusiasts will not like me saying it - they are pinning their hopes on the next firmware release which is either just released, or will be soon. Either way still a GREAT dac. Thanks Bill
  8. GIESELER Groß DAC official release

    Highly doubtful it cant be arranged - but of course contact me and/or Mike when the time comes. Thanks Bill
  9. GIESELER Groß DAC official release

    Make sure you have significant grunt if you want to do DSD. Its supposed to sound good though - Miska swears by it. Clay may even be able to build a special version of the Grob just for that Thanks Bill
  10. GIESELER Groß DAC official release

    I upsample to DXD - not DSD. The computer I use doesn't have the grunt for DSD up-sampling. This test - except for the DXD up-sampling is a test of how both players do PCM. Personally not a big fan of DSD - not that it cant sound good - it can - its just so damn inefficient in bit usage. I have put many DSD files through the following process. Converted it to DXD, ran it through my entropy encoder to see how far it really goes to. 88.2 k virtually always covers it. Down-sample it to that and rerun it through the entropy encoder - its much much smaller without loss of anything except noise. Thanks Bill
  11. GIESELER Groß DAC official release

    I am surprised Mike didn't demo it to you when you went down Saturday - but likely had other things that needed doing, such as finishing my Magnesium's - hint hint Mike You can borrow mine of course, but it is needed for a while here so it can be checked against the DS and it's new update - Redcloud. After that, I know its a bugger of a drive from where you live, but you can come down and borrow it. I also own a DSJ, but that's being repaired under warranty right now and you might like to wait until its repaired. You can then compare both. You can then also check out MQA via its built in bridge. Its entirely up to you. Thanks Bill
  12. Very true in both the DS and whatever chip is in the Grob. So I will modify my comment. It is well known the earlier up-sampling in the cahin ie 44.1 to DXD is more critical than the later ones in terms of sound quality. Both the Grob and DS benefited from the upsampling in HQPlayer. Wthout HQPlayer the Grob to my ears was still better - but it wasn't drop dead better. With the HQPlayer both were improved but the Grob seemed to benefit more so the difference was very obvious. I conjecture this is because of the higher quality of the up-sampling in the DS, which is of course a great credit to Ted Smith. However I have spoken a fair bit to the maker of HQPlayer on Computer Audiophile, Miska, and his up-sampling algorithms are really really good - its not surprising they are better than either DAC. Thanks Bill
  13. Well I own both a DS and DSJ that's how much I like it, but it was beaten by Clays Grob - but with Redcloud who knows. If it still does will just keep the DSJ - but we will see. I agree this thread should not be cluttered up with MQA but since Redcloud works with the Bridge I think a small comment is OK - I will keep it brief. You are not alone in your view. How can it sound better - they claim shorter impulse responce trumps aliasing components. My observation is its a personal preference thing. If anyone want's to discuss more than that - start a new thread - only too happy to go deep into its technical detail. Thanks Bill
  14. That's the part I really enjoy about this hobby - checking stuff out - as my dwindling bank balance readily attests to - as well as the gear I have to sell. We will see with Redcloud how it sounds compared to Clay's Grob. The Grob bested it before - and it was not subtle once we used HQPlayer. What's going on now - we will find out. As of now I am selling my DS - but may change my mind depending on what I hear. Thanks Bill
  15. Lenehan ML2Limited with Duelund Silver Bypass

    It's mixed Mike. When you went over to Rawl's place to hear how his tweaking was going, and I was there as well, you correctly identified it was sounding not that good. The culprit turned out to be the Master Tape machine he was using. As you remember he ditched it and went over to a plain old Squeezebox and things were better. When we bypassed the VSF with that everyone, you, Rawl, and others there all agreed it was better. Your words - that's now 3 dimensional. So Rawl for his tweaking replaced the Master Tape machine with a Killer DAC which of course is way better than a Squeezebox. I went on over with high hopes for the bypasses in the new setup - but it wasn't to be - the treble was a bit off. So it seems source dependent, maybe even amp dependent. It could be great with VSF, or not. Someone can take a gamble if they like, but personally if Mike builds some speakers with VSF for me I don't take the chance and don't get them bypassed. The ML5 reference of mine you have down there has no bypasses for that very reason. However I have heard what they do to Jupiter Copper and like it very much - so I am getting them bypassed on my Magnesium Limited's when Mike finalises the crossover. I will be using the Jupiter Copper rather than Duelund VSF. Duelund VSF are dead neutral IMHO - the Jupiter has a very slight euphonic bloom - I like it though. The Magnesium's while having drop dead detail, speed, and transparency - jaw dropping actually - I have heard nothing like it - are slightly cold. I think the slight bloom in the Jupiter's will counter that a bit. They also work extremely well with the Jantzen Superior. Thanks Bill