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Conducted blind tests on my family today using these 2 DACs. Taught my daughter how to swap between DACs safely and had some fun being blind tested myself.

 

Gross may be a few years old but with the Kraftwerk power supply and driving via USB, it's said to be still close to even the Kompakt recently released. The Ares II is the newer model. I got them for similar money so thought it's a worthy test of a good DAC chip vs a ladder R2R solution.

 

May not be an exhaustive blind test but the tester chose the order to test the two DACs for each song, the person being tested on didn't know. (blocked ears to not hear equipment changing lol). I adjusted the volumes to be the same using a SPL meter.

 

FLACs directly streamed via USB to DACs, XLR to integrated amp -> PMCs.

 

6 songs testing soundstage, bass, guitar, saxophone, triangles, band. 2 adults and 2 children 13 and 11. Summary below, just shows I can't let go of either the Gross or Ares. lol

 

Family results

Soundstage - Generally better soundstage with Ares II

Air - Everyone agreed Ares II had more air

Female vocals - 50/50

Male vocals - Ares II has the edge

Bass - Gross has better bass and less distortion

Triangles and saxophone - Gross generally better

 

My results only

Soundstage - 50/50

Air - Ares II

Female vocals - Ares II

Male vocals - Ares II

Bass - Gross

Triangles and saxophone - Gross

Edited by noisuf
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26 minutes ago, noisuf said:

 Summary below, just shows I can't let go of either the Gross or Ares. lol

 

 

Nah, you just need to sell ur house and buy a dac that combines the best attributes of both.

 

now I think the last time that we heard from you, u'd bought the Giesler and a Cambridge amp and were looking for speakers, did the Denefrips pop up out of nowhere?!

 

Cheers Trip

 

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The slide is a slippery beast.

 

I got a denafrips from a fellow member........I was planning to just do some testing and comparing for a few weeks and then put it back into the SNA pool. But it's so good and I can't let go of either.

 

I've found my speakers too. It was a lot more than budgeted for. I got a pair of used PMCs for ok price.

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1 hour ago, noisuf said:

The slide is a slippery beast.

 

I got a denafrips from a fellow member........I was planning to just do some testing and comparing for a few weeks and then put it back into the SNA pool. But it's so good and I can't let go of either.

 

I've found my speakers too. It was a lot more than budgeted for. I got a pair of used PMCs for ok price.

 

Sounds like u have done very well 👍

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18 hours ago, noisuf said:

The slide is a slippery beast.

 

I got a denafrips from a fellow member........I was planning to just do some testing and comparing for a few weeks and then put it back into the SNA pool. But it's so good and I can't let go of either.

 

I've found my speakers too. It was a lot more than budgeted for. I got a pair of used PMCs for ok price.

Hi mate,

 

Just wondering r u still have plan to sell ur Ares 2? If yes, I'll be next one in the queue. Cuz I've been looking for a while.

 

Cheers,

Ryan 

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On 26/10/2020 at 5:09 PM, Thebs said:

Hi mate,

 

Just wondering r u still have plan to sell ur Ares 2? If yes, I'll be next one in the queue. Cuz I've been looking for a while.

 

Cheers,

Ryan 

I thought I was going to let it go after comparing for a few weeks.....but the vocals are just too good. Gross for instruments.

 

Good luck with search! Dacman is good new option.

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31 minutes ago, noisuf said:

I thought I was going to let it go after comparing for a few weeks.....but the vocals are just too good. Gross for instruments.

 

Good luck with search! Dacman is good new option.

 

+1 for @Dacman's service! I just bought an Ares 2 off him recently @Thebs

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