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4 hours ago, was_a said:

But I take issue with your argument that current DAC ICs give [budget and mid-price] products equal performance to reference-grade devices of yesteryear. Because there remains the age-old requirement for a good analogue output stage. And that's responsible for a large percentage of sound quality. 

 

No no, you've misunderstood that. I'm simply suggesting that current IC's have a performance potential that matches research instrumentation. 

 

Part of this is that sure, there's a propensity for more modern DAC designs to be more amenable to better sound. Didn't suggest for a second that the stuff around an IC doesn't matter - quite the opposite if anything.

 

My main DAC is a 1541A. Not going anywhere in a rush.

 

3 hours ago, sir sanders zingmore said:

What if the "other" DAC measures better than the Topping?

 

Then we learn something, same as if it doesn't. 

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Guest Muon N'
2 hours ago, rmpfyf said:

My main DAC is a 1541A. Not going anywhere in a rush.

You just leveled up, 5 point increase in reputation.

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7 hours ago, Muon N' said:

You just leveled up, 5 point increase in reputation.

😂😂 Ha ha ha

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After 15 pages of opinions and theories, has anybody bought one of these yet?

I see they are readily available and that a MQA version is next cab off the rank.

Would be interested in impressions of owners.

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3 hours ago, wolster said:

After 15 pages of opinions and theories, has anybody bought one of these yet?

I see they are readily available and that a MQA version is next cab off the rank.

Would be interested in impressions of owners.

It will be more, but it gives you that support and capability

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I am thinking of buying one so I can bring it to compare to Clayton's new AKM 4499 DAC. I'm not expecting a giant killer here but I would be interested to see how different analog stages and power stages would affect the final product!

 

EDIT: Should note that I'm not trying to insult Gieseler Audio. They've been rather good to me, with support of their products with I have bought. This is just for my own experience and knowledge building exercise.

Edited by Suopermanni

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Guest Muon N'
7 hours ago, Suopermanni said:

I am thinking of buying one so I can bring it to compare to Clayton's new AKM 4499 DAC. I'm not expecting a giant killer here but I would be interested to see how different analog stages and power stages would affect the final product!

 

EDIT: Should note that I'm not trying to insult Gieseler Audio. They've been rather good to me, with support of their products with I have bought. This is just for my own experience and knowledge building exercise.

I think I hear the Topping sobbing in anticipation, don't stop on any bridges when driving over with it :ninja:

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On 28/12/2019 at 12:32 PM, sir sanders zingmore said:

I do like the idea of BT.

My family hates using Tidal, if they could just stream spotify via BT to the dac, that would make everyone happier

Why the hatred of Tidal? Curious is all, have used Tidal with Audirvarna 

via my Denafrips Dac for a few years now.

Works very well for me.

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1 hour ago, soundfan said:

Why the hatred of Tidal? Curious is all, have used Tidal with Audirvarna 

via my Denafrips Dac for a few years now.

Works very well for me.

All their playlists are on Spotify and it seems to have more of the music they like and the interface is better. 

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12 hours ago, sir sanders zingmore said:

All their playlists are on Spotify and it seems to have more of the music they like and the interface is better. 

This is my exact problem with tidal too. If Spotify went lossless, the problems of the world would be solved...

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On 02/01/2020 at 12:28 PM, Ittaku said:

DAC distortions are ludicrously small compared to the rest of the system, and the most expensive DACs measured at ASR have some of the "worst" measurements. No one can definitively say important those distortions are in the final listening experience.

I personally think this is an academic debate, really. That is, it is just a matter of opinions.

Some (me included) think low distortion and excellent measured performance are desirable features in a system, because they make it transparent to the source. If your listening experience is not satisfying, then you can only blame the source.

Others think that added distortion, when done in a certain way, is nice and makes the listening experience better. This is one of the arguments supporting tube-based amplification, for instance, because tubes add distortion (preferably in low order harmonics). The other reason tube amplifiers often sound different is the higher output impedance, which results in non flat frequency response where the speaker load is not flat across the frequency range (hint, it almost never is). Specifically, bumps in speaker impedance roughly correspond to bumps in frequency response, if the amplifier output impedance is relatively high.

 

In my experience, though it is fun to experiment with tubes, in the end one always achieves results that may sound pleasant only for a limited number of music genres, or tracks. I like for instance the "tube glare" on strings, because it makes guitars sound more full, almost like a 12 strings, but I find this overwhelming in any other instrument or music genres. 

 

My understanding of the philosophy underlying ASR is that, because they consider good only components that are transparent to the source, a complete set of measurements will be all they need to establish how good a component is. This makes complete sense, if one agrees with the postulate "transparency = good". While they do some minor listening test, they openly consider these of minor importance as the ear+brain is demonstrably less sensitive than professional measuring gear. On the other hand, components that are designed to have high distortion (to add a sound signature to the source) are of no interest to ASR, because the listening experience of these components will be highly subjective, in that it will depend on a mix of personal taste and things like  impedance matching within everyone's system. So there is no value, according to ASR, in saying "this sounds good", or " it has a black background", or it has a " large sound-stage" because these subjective features may not be there in someone else's system, or may not be perceived in the same way by a different person, in a different room, with different speakers and different ears+brain.

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Your whole argument is that transparency and lack of distortion are the result of wonderfully measuring DACs! 

 

But these attributes do not come from measurements alone - and even if they did, small discrepancies in noise and distortion metrics will not have a great deal of influence on sound quality. Rather, it's how you treat the analogue output stage (and power supply) that has the greatest influence.

 

(And it's rather a stretch to equate tube distortion to the minuscule digital anomalies we're talking about).

 

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6 minutes ago, was_a said:

Your whole argument is that transparency and lack of distortion are the result of wonderfully measuring DACs! 

 

But these attributes do not come from measurements alone - and even if they did, small discrepancies in noise and distortion metrics will not have a great deal of influence on sound quality. Rather, it's how you treat the analogue output stage (and power supply) that has the greatest influence.

 

(And it's rather a stretch to equate tube distortion to the minuscule digital anomalies we're talking about).

 

A wonderfully measuring DAC will, by definition, be transparent and lack distortion.

 

The measurements come from the attributes, the attributes don't come from the measurements.

 

The analog output stage and the power supply will influence the measurements so their effect can be quantified.

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Simplistic statements have dogged this thread, and yours is a prime example. 

 

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3 minutes ago, was_a said:

Simplistic statements have dogged this thread, and yours is a prime example. 

 

I was making more of a logical statement rather than a simplistic statement.

 

Your failure to accept scientific proof has also dogged this thread.

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I accept scientific measurements and believe they are an essential guide to DAC design. But scientific 'proof' of sound quality (including transparency) is a simplistic notion. One that budget / newbie audiophiles on ASR adore.

 

I mean, you're dreaming if you believe in 'scientific proof'! There's no such thing when it comes to sound quality, not in the real world.

 

 

 

 

Edited by was_a

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28 minutes ago, was_a said:

I accept scientific measurements and believe they are an essential guide to DAC design. But scientific 'proof' of sound quality (including transparency) is a simplistic notion. One that budget / newbie audiophiles on ASR adore.

 

I mean, you're dreaming if you believe in 'scientific proof'! There's no such thing when it comes to sound quality, not in the real world.

 

 

 

 

In my opinion sound quality and transparency and two entirely different concepts.

 

Transparency means that the system will not alter the source signal. Distortion is by definition any alteration of the source signal, and can be measured very accurately. So I believe that transparency in a component such as a DAC can be easily and consistently measured. 

 

Sound quality is entirely a matter of personal taste and as such it is not something quantifiable or measurable in any possible way. What one likes, someone else may dislike. 

 

To me, sound quality requires a transparent system, not components that add anything to the source.

 

However I did own high distortion tube amplifiers which I thought were great fun to listen to. For a bit. Then I started to get annoyed by the coloration and moved on. 

Edited by o2so

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46 minutes ago, was_a said:

Your whole argument is that transparency and lack of distortion are the result of wonderfully measuring DACs! 

 

 

This is not my argument, sorry if I was not clear. My argument is that the more transparent a component is, the better it measures. This is logic when you consider how distortion measurements are undertaken. A signal is inputted in the system, and what comes out of the system in response to that input is measured. The extent to which input and output differ is the system distortion.  

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On 12/01/2020 at 12:45 PM, wolster said:

After 15 pages of opinions and theories, has anybody bought one of these yet?

I see they are readily available and that a MQA version is next cab off the rank.

Would be interested in impressions of owners.

Come back in another 15 pages and maybe you might have someone compare it to their current DAC. Until then let them keep talking about..... I don't know what they are talkin'bout!

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3 minutes ago, misternavi said:

Come back in another 15 pages and maybe you might have someone compare it to their current DAC. Until then let them keep talking about..... I don't know what they are talkin'bout!

LOL

 

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1 hour ago, misternavi said:

Come back in another 15 pages and

...............the sub V ob tribes will still be doing their thing.  AKA a lot of heat and not much light.:lol:

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So! we are back in the 1970's again where measurements are the only thing that need to be assessed when purchasing audio equipment :)

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Yep. 

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