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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by drmatt View Post
    I remain skeptical that a test designed solely to make it hard to tell the difference is representative of long term differentiation capability. But that's just my opinion and we are very aware that many people disagree with that.
    The good news is that the listening tests I recommend were never designed to make it hard to hear real differences. That's an audiophile myth or more probably a dealer myth because audio dealers know that helping people make more rational choices are going to cost them money.

    The listening tests I recommend were designed to make it easier to hear real differences by eliminating differences that are added by the unnatural act of comparing components.

    The tests I recommend were designed to reduce or eliminate differences that don't matter, differences that are not representative of actual listening. That makes it easier to hear differences that matter.

    For example, level matched is actually how we usually listen because we usually listen to just one set of components that are of course level matched with themselves. We're just eliniating a difference that is uniquely added when we compare compoents as opposed to listening to them for enjoyment.

    Audible differences due to listening level are trivial and nothing that anybody wants to pay for. Minimizing them is why audio systems have level controls - to allow you to listen at the level you want, and not affected by an accidentally introduced difference.
    Last edited by arnyk; 2016-11-29 at 08:33.

  2. #22
    Senior Member Mnyb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drmatt View Post
    I remain sceptical that a test designed solely to make it hard to tell the difference is representative of long term differentiation capability. But that's just my opinion and we are very aware that many people disagree with that.
    You dont need to rely on that look at the measurments , far better than the recordings most plays and far better than human hearing ( in the very best humans in a home settling maybe at 13 bits a good day ). I think I managed -76db in my own room in my own listening position . Test as follows my typical listening level , use test signals with diminish loudness .
    (Best case ear against tweeter volume at full tilt -112dB)

    Devices ( any ) with flat frequency response low noise and low distorsion are simply not audible , most small signal electronics .

    Power amps driven outside of spec and the general gain scaling errors and other missmatches complivate things sometimes.

    Btw you can run dbt's for monthnif you pike tomstudy longterm effects
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  3. #23
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    Well, truth is I haven't proved it to myself either way, but so far I'm of the opinion that I can tell the diff between the DACs I've tried out. One is certainly flawed, or "tuned" at least to sound a particular way. The other two the differences were ultra subtle but I do believe they are there. I can't deny this could come down to just minor differences in frequency response at the extremes (bass, most notably).

    OK then there's the DACs in the SBT which imho can't really compete in terms of clarity with the off board DACs I've been demoing.

    This is not an exhaustive trial of the market.. nor is it particularly scientific..

    Sent from my Nexus 9 using Tapatalk
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  4. #24
    Senior Member Mnyb's Avatar
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    There is also what it drives, so me DAC's may not very low impedance output stages or it varies with frequncy.
    Is it migrh not work splendidly with for example passive preamps .

    Is not Touch a bit picky in that regard ? And signal levels can upset things to . I migth have idealised some , due to a lack of proper standards there is plenty of room for mismatches
    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    Main hifi: Touch + CIA PS +MeridianG68J MeridianHD621 MeridianG98DH 2 x MeridianDSP5200 MeridianDSP5200HC 2 xMeridianDSP3100 +Rel Stadium 3 sub.
    Bedroom/Office: Boom
    Kitchen: Touch + powered Fostex PM0.4
    Misc use: Radio (with battery)
    iPad1 with iPengHD & SqueezePad
    (spares Touch, SB3, reciever ,controller )
    server HP proliant micro server N36L with ClearOS Linux

    http://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html

  5. #25
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    This is it, is got to be too simplistic to say they all sound the same. I am inclined to think that all DAC chips *can* sound the same - assuming they have equal quality power supplies and are driving a particularly easy load, but that's not the real world.

    (My pre amp is not passive btw.)
    --
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  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mnyb View Post
    You dont need to rely on that look at the measurments , far better than the recordings most plays and far better than human hearing ( in the very best humans in a home settling maybe at 13 bits a good day )
    I don't disagree. But I am sure I can tell the difference.. therefore what differences there are must exist in that top 13 bits or so of dynamic range.. cue the sirens..

    I doubt I could tell the difference with a frequency sweep though.
    --
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  7. #27
    Senior Member Mnyb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drmatt View Post
    I don't disagree. But I am sure I can tell the difference.. therefore what differences there are must exist in that top 13 bits or so of dynamic range.. cue the sirens..

    I doubt I could tell the difference with a frequency sweep though.
    You have to test that sometime ?

    When I was a card carrying audiophile I was utterly convinced that I did hear differences everywhere .

    Best case scenario is quite common , I think the exotic boutique hif is more prone to weirdness . Normal midfi probably has robust line level implementation.
    This the kind of things sites and audio press should test ? Not listening to power cables .
    It should be trivial to make a modern AV reciever perfectly transparent, but they migth not be , the complexity of such product makes mistakes likely and as they are complex to test ? Looks like work , better wax about the life like presentation of some preamp

    Example some dude had problems here years ago with distortion from his squeezebox, turned out that his tube preamp clipped at 0.5 volt input ? Some kind of Manley product ! You can easily beat high boutique stuff with chines DVD players from Walmart
    regarding performance .

    Point is that it's well known electrical engineering . We miss out from high end due their development process/marketing scam tactics ,sighted eveluation and weird beliefs that disregard common best practice on how to do stuff , instead make it complex and expensive and anachronistic.

    Household products can be very good if the engineer bothered reading the standard textbooks it does not really cost much to implement soundquality due to readily aviable chipset and even design examples from the factory, but most regular customers don't really care so it can be there or not .
    Kudos,to,the likes of oppo who does it good . And also kudos to the cottage industry that builds HAT DAC's for PI , that's hifi at reasonable prices 10-30k$ on a DAC is just silly .

    Btw is not the Transporter very similar to the then current AKM reference design ? With some help from the actual AKM engineers . I respect the TP's fresh aproach to high end, it is a top class product it was as expensive as squeezebox possibly needed to bee throwing more money at it would not have improved the product . And yes why not ask the chip manufacturer about how to best use thier products
    For giggles Google all the old treads with people modding the TP ( making it worse ) swapping capacitors and sticking tubes into it.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    Main hifi: Touch + CIA PS +MeridianG68J MeridianHD621 MeridianG98DH 2 x MeridianDSP5200 MeridianDSP5200HC 2 xMeridianDSP3100 +Rel Stadium 3 sub.
    Bedroom/Office: Boom
    Kitchen: Touch + powered Fostex PM0.4
    Misc use: Radio (with battery)
    iPad1 with iPengHD & SqueezePad
    (spares Touch, SB3, reciever ,controller )
    server HP proliant micro server N36L with ClearOS Linux

    http://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mnyb View Post
    You have to test that sometime ?

    When I was a card carrying audiophile I was utterly convinced that I did hear differences everywhere .
    Just what I suspected....your Audiophile card has been revoked!!!

    Well I still have my Audiophile card "Platinum" and I can hear a difference in EVERYTHING.

    Turning nose up and walking away...

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by drmatt View Post
    This is it, is got to be too simplistic to say they all sound the same.
    Well they don't *all* sound the same, but the vast majority of them do.

    I am inclined to think that all DAC chips *can* sound the same - assuming they have equal quality power supplies and are driving a particularly easy load, but that's not the real world.
    All DAC chips don't sound the same, just the ones that are well-designed and are designed to be sonically transparent.

    Last time I did listening tests it took some pretty sorry crap for example the DAC in a CD-ROM dri for its headphone jack, to actually be bad enough to sound difference. Through about 2005 it was possible to find PC's that had bad enough DACs to actually sound bad, but now it takes some substandard design of the PC layout on the motherboard to make them sound difference, and the difference is usually obvious stuff like hum and noise.

    The idea DACs need special attention in the power supply or line driver department to sound right is an audiophile myth.

    It would be fun to set up a good listening test at a high end hi fi show and watch all the self-important owners of expensive DACs learn the truth. I doubt that they would let me rent a booth, as the outcome would be a disaster for the big financial interests.

  10. #30
    Senior Member Mnyb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arnyk View Post
    Well they don't *all* sound the same, but the vast majority of them do.



    All DAC chips don't sound the same, just the ones that are well-designed and are designed to be sonically transparent.




    The idea DACs need special attention in the power supply or line driver department to sound right is an audiophile myth.

    It would be fun to set up a good listening test at a high end hi fi show and watch all the self-important owners of expensive DACs learn the truth. I doubt that they would let me rent a booth, as the outcome would be a disaster for the big financial interests.
    I think this stuff needs normal attention, the designer knows his EE . In these days pick a suitable op amp for line driver .

    A typical audiophile design can make life hard for its designer ( and the price high to its customer ) a discrete design trying to complete with ic's is complex and hard pressed to reach the same performance and psrr , more demands on the power supply .
    Or a no negative feedback design with basically no psrr meaning extreme attention to the power supply .
    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    Main hifi: Touch + CIA PS +MeridianG68J MeridianHD621 MeridianG98DH 2 x MeridianDSP5200 MeridianDSP5200HC 2 xMeridianDSP3100 +Rel Stadium 3 sub.
    Bedroom/Office: Boom
    Kitchen: Touch + powered Fostex PM0.4
    Misc use: Radio (with battery)
    iPad1 with iPengHD & SqueezePad
    (spares Touch, SB3, reciever ,controller )
    server HP proliant micro server N36L with ClearOS Linux

    http://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html

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