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GIESELER Fein DAC II owners thread

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I thought I would get this started early as units are already shipping.

I'm very excited about the Fein DAC II & critical listening tests are proving very positive.

The big difference is this model has the equivalent of a Kraftwerk Nichicon Gold Tune PSU built into the main board.

Now that is normally a $450 extra so at $2000 (USB only ver) this represent excellent value.  3 - input version $2300

Total main filter capacitance is actually 40,000 uf all gold tune so slightly more than the separate Kraftwerk version.  

Also the other plus over previous DAC's is totally separate PSU's for the left & right VREF supplies to the DAC chip. This seriously adds more separation & improves imaging.

 It is mainly for owners to comment on their impressions but other related input welcome.

Enjoy!

IMG_3365.thumb.JPG.1d136104dfcb7fdd85b696fcade3d8ee.JPG

 

Edited by Gieseler Audio
better photo

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Hi Clay,

congratulations for Fein II.

Will there be a Groß II as well or is because of the larger output transformers no place on the circuit board for an interior power supply like Fein II?

Thanks

 

Matt

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Hi Matt,

at this stage it will just be the Fein II & I will probably wait for the AK4499 to do a new higher end model.

 

 

 

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Very keen to hear about comparisons with the Groß, Fein 1 or indeed a PS audio DSJ if anyone is lucky enough to have any of those?

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Mmmm, so when the AK4499 is out will we see a Groß II with the Nichicon Gold built in? Are these better than the Silmics? Still really enjoying mine :)

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noddy

I don't have a Groß so can't do a comparison with the Fein I but there have been some comparisons between the DS & the Groß.

 

Matt,

yes you summed that up pretty well.

I have stopped production of the Groß as the AK4499 will become AKM's top chip when it is released in May.

Nichicon Gold Tune vs Elna Silmic.

They are a bit different in terms of application. The Nichicon's are a much larger "snap in" design suited as a main filter cap in a PSU.

The Silmic's have normal wire thru hole connections & suit decoupling, extra smoothing etc.

I'm using the Nichicons Gold Tune's in the Fein II as it has a large Kraftwerk style PSU built in. I need 40k uf of filtering & you would need a crazy number of Silimic's to do that. 

The Fein II & also the Groß will be at Benjet's gtg in Brisbane so a good time to do comparisons.

 

 

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Thanks for that link I have been keeping a close eye on that thread and yes waiting for a comparison of the DSJ with a Groß + external PSU. Shame I am not in Brisbane would be great to here the comparison between the Fein ll and Groß.

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Maybe I should organise a demo Fein II trip to Melbourne as I have had a few enquireys from there.

I have just ordered the pcb’s for the 3- input version which  has quite a few upgrades in the S/PDIF section compared to all earlier models. Upgrades are ultra low noise regulators for analogue & digital supplies to the Wolfson WM8804. Also low ESR Tantlum decoupling caps in the same area & improved rf I2S switching relays. Also the S/PDIF section now has full auto 

muting on signal unlock or disconnection - no more loud unexpected white noise.

With this new version I would expect minimal sound quality differences between the 3 input & USB only version.

 Now all I have to do is pray that I have no mistakes in my new PCB layout.  The tracks are so fine there’s no way I can change anything. 🙏🙏🙏

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 Well I’ve finally had a chance to carefully compare the Fein II with a Gross DAC.

 The Gross was a very well run in USB only version ( supposedly best sounding version) powered by a Kraftwerk  gold tune power supply. The Fein II was a brand new build (no run in) 3 - input version powered by the standard 9v external transformer/plugpack.  For the record there is no point in powering the Fein II with anything else as it has a built-in Kraftwerk  gold tune Enhanced  power supply.

 First up both DAC’s sound extremely good but in my opinion the Fein II is clearly better in a few areas.

Improvements were, imaging, separation, resolution & bass control.  Initially I thought the Gross was fuller in the bottom end but with careful listening  I think it was a looser bass without the control/tightness the Fein II had.

 Now please take note this is my opinion only and obviously subjective.  I will try some to do some organised double blind testing with additional listeners when time permits. 

 I’m very confident one of the big reasons for the improvement is the built-in Kraftwerk Enhanced power supply that the Fein II has.  No doubt the Gross would also improve with  that treatment but I’ll save that for the new AK4499 version but that will not be for a while.  Also the AK4499 is “current out” ( not voltage RE Fein) so I won’t be able to use the simple Jensen line output transformer topology - dam shame!

 So summing  up the Fein II is  now my benchmark DAC And in my opinion the best sounding unit to date.

 Bold statement I know but there should be a few units out there shortly so looking forward to some owner reviews  which this topic is for.

Edited by Gieseler Audio

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Thanks for the comparison of the two. Am very interested in the Fein II but will wait for more reviews. Sounds like the 3 input version of the Fein II is shipping now? 

Edited by noddyc43

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