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GIESELER KONVERTER (DAC/Preamp) Official release.

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2 hours ago, powerav said:

Smart arse warning:

Is it MQA compliant.:D

 

No.

 

But Clay is well aware of what is required and needs to wait until chips that work with his AKM DAC are available.

 

Those that have it like the Meridian Explorer 2 use FGPA's that simply require updated firmware.   Those, like Clay, that use DAC chips need to wait until chips that do the MQA conversion for that particular chip are available.

 

I believe MQA is the future of audio, but its early days yet and I know Clay is investigating it, but unfortunately will not happen overnight.

 

Thanks

Bill

Edited by bhobba

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Hi Guys

 

Heard it.

 

Very very good - up there with the 3 best DAC's I know.

 

In no particular order because they are all diffferent these are:

 

Konverter

Killer

Direct Stream.

 

its impossible to order them because they are all different.

 

The Killer is exquisitely beautiful on the right material such as what I listen to - Peggy Lee - Fever.   On the wrong material like ACDC - not so hot.

 

The Direct Stream is the most expensive of the lot but is continually being upgraded by software changes which each change better than the last.  Its simply dead neutral with non edgy natural detail.  But maybe a little boring with no Ah factor like the Killer.   Works well on all music.  Has the bridge 2 add on that will soon include MQA and operated via Roon or an Android phone over the internet.

 

Clay's DAC is different again with different features such as a pre-amp and home theatre bypass.  You cant get a handle on its digital signature because you have a remote control with configurable DAC filters so you can change its signature to be like the Killler or DS.   Not exactly the same ie not quite as neutral as the DS or beautiful as the Killer but some were close and others different again.   All sounded good.   Was it better or worse than the others.  Its not that simple at this level - its a personal preference thing.  

 

Now I like the Killer because it works so well with my music.  I also like the DS - but maybe just a tad uninvolving.  Clays DAC's allow you to choose more according to your mood and music - of course since its configurable none are 100% accurate - no DAC of course is - the DS would be closest.   But is that what you want?  Its entirely up to you.

 

You should listen to all three and most certainly that can be arranged.  It really is the only way to decide.   Clay's DAC is that good.  BTW the other two DAC's are both more expensive so value definitely goes to Clay.

 

Also Clay told me a few technical; details.  He takes the DAC output straight to Jensen output transformers then the pre-amp stage which also has Jensen transformers.  They are very transparent but quite expensive and it uses 4.   Only the highest quality components are used so its price is very reasonable considering parts quality and what went into it.

 

It of course has my heartiest recommendation - but at this level do listen to the other DAC's mentioned - they are all a bit different with different features.  The DS is quite a bit more expense at twice the price - a better match to compare against would be the DS Junior.

 

Thanks

Bill 

 

 

Edited by bhobba

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10 hours ago, bhobba said:

I believe MQA is the future of audio.............

 

Bill,

really?

All music available as MQA only? IMO, this would be a nightmare.

 

Matt

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5 hours ago, matth said:

Bill, really? All music available as MQA only? IMO, this would be a nightmare

 

Yes - good point.

 

I will qualify this - the future of streaming audio.

 

I listen to Tidal pretty much exclusively these days due to it has everything I ever listen to including new releases.  All for just $20pm.

 

The issue is quality.  I give the order as follows from a number of experiments I have done:

 

1.  Lowest quality - normal Tidal.  Despite that its what I use since its still very listenable.

2.  On disk, usb drive etc.   Better - but not as convenient and you have to buy it or put your little pirate hat on.

3.  Streamed MQA - best of all.   Gradually Tidal is converting everything to MQA - it has over 1000 albums now and growing. Warner Brothers are converting everything over, Universal just agreed and now the only holdout is Sony - but how long before it agrees - doubtful it will be long, it will likely eventually come on board, but we will see.

 

Now as to quality compared to other formats - even DXD and 4XDSD - see the following and judge for yourself:

http://www.2l.no/hires/

 

Here is what one person thought:

http://www.2l.no/hires/documentation/2L-MQA_Comparisons.pdf

 

That's correct - better than DXD.

 

I can feel a GTG comming on.

 

BTW Clay is fully aware of all of this and will 100% for sure be looking at incorporating it in future products.   But as I said - its early days yet in the MQA 'revolution' if it happens - many a slip between lip and cup - so exactly what eventuates is anyone's guess.

 

What I can say 100% for sure is 96k MQA from the Tidal application sounds glorious through Clays new DAC - I have heard it.

 

Thanks

Bill

Edited by bhobba

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IMO, Clays forum is not the right place to discuss MQA, but regarding streaming one must read this:

 

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/blogs/miska/some-analysis-and-comparison-mqa-encoded-flac-vs-normal-optimized-hires-flac-674/

 

Technically the full MQA decoding could be made in SOFTWARE ( if Mr. Stuart allows it) and for me it would be fine to have a Gieseler DAC without MQA hardware decoding. 

 

Matt

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Sponsor

Quick update. The final production digital & PSU boards will now be using state of the art Linear Technolgy ultra low noise regulators - 8uv so I'm expecting a subtle but definate improvement again in sound quality. I will be keeping the current prototype to compare against the final production model. I'm currently using at home the first prototype (AK4490) version & in terms of audio quality  AK4497 version is significantly better. The current AK4497 model (pictured) is a special USB only version I did for myself so that may be contributing to sound improvement due to the direct I2S connection - no relay switching.

Edited by Gieseler Audio

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51 minutes ago, matth said:

Technically the full MQA decoding could be made in SOFTWARE ( if Mr. Stuart allows it) and for me it would be fine to have a Gieseler DAC without MQA hardware decoding. 

 

Of course it can and its quite possible Roon and other software will have it for common DAC chips like the AKM Clay uses.

 

Again its early on in the cycle and Clay is well aware of whats going on which is all you can ask for.

 

But please please know that the usual 96k from the Tidal application is great on this DAC.

 

Thanks

Bill

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27 minutes ago, bhobba said:

But please please know that the usual 96k from the Tidal application is great on this DAC.

 

This is good to know and Clay deserves praise for designing a DAC with AK4497 and excellent output transformers like Linn with the Katalyst DAC.

 

Matt

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