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About Tony@melb

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  1. With Primaluna tube rolling, you can find Youtube videos such as https://www.primaluna-usa.com/tube-rolling I have only tried 3 different types of tubes so far. I bought a set of Mullard ones for about $300 recently and they sound excellent. The clarity of my PL Prologue with the new tubes sounds as good as some good quality SS preamp, with the warmth. The fun thing is that you can use the tubes for a few thousand hours, change them and it feels like buying a new amp 😁 I have so far shied away from NOS because of the cost. Anyway, I saw a PL Dialogue for sale at SNA recently, it seems like a good buy. The only complaint I have about PL preamps is that they don't have XLR interface except the most expensive model (i.e. EVO 400). Before I bought my tube preamp, I shopped around a bit looking for any good tube preamp. The good ones are typically very costly. There are various forums that discuss tubes and amps, e.g. is https://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=159792.0 Cheers, Tony
  2. Andrew, In a transport you look for a high-quality DAC. I haven't tried PL transport so cannot comment on how well it works. I have listened to PL pre-amps (both Prologue and Dialogue) and they sound wonderful. However, the tubes matter a lot. I find that the PL stock standard 12AU7 and 5AR4 rectifier (both silver and gold) are average. I swapped them with Mullard and they sound much better, both in clarity and sound stage. I will try Gold Lion next to see what happens. A friend has acquired a Chord Mojo and this DAC is very nice and it works well with PL preamp. It is a cheaper version of the Chord Qutest but almost as good. One can feed CD player signals, through coax or optical, to a Chord DAC and the music is incredibly good.
  3. welcome. Tony to Tony 😀
  4. A good DAC can make a big difference. Some of the reasonable but economic ones are produced by Audio Lab & Musical Fidelity. I think a 2nd hand Chord Electronics Mojo is excellent. However, you need good USB cable and RCA cable to get the best out of your DAC. $2 cables will dull the music substantially.
  5. I have one myself and absolutely love it. It's especially nice to roll tubes on this preamp. It's like getting a news preamp everytime I move to another brand rectifiers and 12AU7 tubes.
  6. Further information: The hiFace2 plugs into a USB port at the source (e.g. computer) and then connects to a DAC through coax interface. It produces better sound than many hi-end USB cables. I have compared it with a number of USB-AB cables in the $200 mark. One needs a good coax cable to connect this device to the DAC. Software can be downloaded from the manufacturer website and installed on the computer from where the music is streamed. For more information, please see : https://lnx.m2tech.biz/products/pens/hiface-two/ https://www.thecableco.com/cables/usb-cable/hiface-usb-to-s-pdif-thumb-drive.html https://www.carltonaudiovisual.com.au/m2tech-hi-face-two.html Photos:
  7. Further information: Musical Fidelity is an entry-level digital to analog converter. It has upsampling support and can convert music files up to 24bits/192KHz. The sound quality is very good. It supports balanced and RCA outputs, and takes USB, optical and coax inputs. See https://www.musicalfidelity.com/m1dac for specification. See https://www.whathifi.com/au/musical-fidelity/m1-dac/review for review. As an additional option, I also have a M2Tech HiFaceTwo device for an additional $150. It plugs into a USB port at the source (e.g. music server or computer) and then connects to the DAC through coax interface. It produce even better sound. One needs to use a coax cable which is not provided. Please see https://www.carltonaudiovisual.com.au/m2tech-hi-face-two.html Donation will be made to stereonet upon sale.
  8. Check out Audiolab 8200MB. I saw a pair at $2K a while back. They sound warm and provide good clarity and image. See review http://www.hifi-review.com/152615-audiolab-8200mb.html
  9. Music runs in real-time. I suspect there are other factors such as timing accuracy that need to be measured to characterise why a good USB cable can produce better sound than a $2 shop USB cable. I did blind listening between a $2 shop cable and a Chord C-USB cable, the sound difference is significant. The source is a Windows-7 PC running JRiver and the DAC is a Musical Fidelity M1DAC. With the same setup, I also compared Chord C-USB cable with Hi-Face+COAX. Both use the USB-2 port of the computer. Hi-Face is a USB to S/PDIF converter. The music using Hi-Face with COAX is clearer and richer than using USB cable. I was told that the internal clock in Hi-Face is more precise than the native clock on the PC and so it improves music streaming (?!)
  10. I use Chord Qutest DAC. This DAC supports both PCM and DSD. I ripped an album (by Hanne Boel) in flac and DSD 2.8MHz formats. We listed to these two formats, plus in LP. We found that the flac files played through PCM was slightly inferior. LP and DSD quality were not distinguishable.
  11. Try Class A Audio. Kevin has new, demo and pre-owned speakers. Their price is good. I have purchased from him for a number of years.
  12. One of the best DACs in the market is made by Chord Electronics. Some of the decent but economical DACs are made by AudioLab and Musical Fidelity. 2nd hand one is fine. Depending on your source, if the music comes from a server, a decent USB cable can be 1/4 - 1/3 of the price of the DAC. A good and an ordinary computer USB cable makes a lot of difference.
  13. No such thing as "best", it depends on your ears. In your case perhaps it depends on your eyes !!! I'd suggest to go to a few hi-fi shops to have a look to see what you like and how much you wish to pay. Do some online research at http://www.audioreview.com/speakers.html and you'll be able to see a lot of speakers.
  14. Ian, that's great to know. I must visit the shop after the lockdown. We went to Delft last year and visited a very nice vinyl shop there.
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