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Julian Alden-Salter
2005-03-29, 14:32
Hi,

Some of you may remember that I posed a few questions a while ago about the
internal clock and digital output quality of the original squeezebox. I was
running my mk1 via an audio synthesis dax-2 and lately a dax decade. Both of
these dac’s have a digital signal quality indicator showing the dac’s
ability to lock onto the incoming signal. There are 2 levels, a wide
bandwidth level which allows pretty much any signal to be locked onto and a
‘crystal’ or ‘x’ lock which achieves a ‘quieter’ lock with higher quality
digital signals.

Unfortunately my mk1 playing flacs/wavs was unable to output an ‘x’lockable
signal – although flac’s converted to mp3 did generate a digital signal that
could be x-locked it seemed a bit pointless to convert flac to mp3 for
‘better quality’. I tried various tweaks including a monarchy dip, a
behringer ultramatch and a slightly upgraded psu all of which failed to
light the x-lock indicator. To further rub salt in the would a friend
brought round his dpa cd transport which comprehensively annihilated the
squeezebox in the quality stakes – although the ‘box was waaaay ahead in the
convenience stakes.

This morning the nice man from UPS dropped off my squeezebox 2 and after I’d
paid the chancellor of the exchequers ransom I connected it up and away we
went. After a small delay music issued forth and then click the ‘xlock’
lights up. Boy the grin nearly split my head in two. Over the day I’ve been
listening to a lot of my music collection and must say that it’s a no
brainer to say that the new squeezebox 2 is miles better than the mk1 from
an ‘audiophile’ quality point of view. I would say that, from my admittedly
fallible audio memory, the dpa transport could be considered still slightly
‘better’ but now they are in the same ballpark and one could conceivably
prefer the squeezebox’s more relaxed presentation to the dpa’s more in your
face manners – it would depend on the listener. So is that ‘better’ or just
‘different’ then? I’m going to try to arrange a rematch with the dpa to see
how it really measures up. Still given that the squeezebox cost £200 and the
dpa was over £1k new the squeezebox is ahead in my book.

Cheers





Julian.

windguy2
2005-03-29, 17:15
Excellent info - Did you test the analogue quality - I would like to
avoid the cost of an external DAC, if it was in the running I'm
guessing that a battery power supply would even improve it more?

Mike.

On Mar 29, 2005, at 3:32 PM, Julian Alden-Salter wrote:

> Hi,
>
> Some of you may remember that I posed a few questions a while ago
> about the internal clock and digital output quality of the original
> squeezebox. I was running my mk1 via an audio synthesis dax-2 and
> lately a dax decade. Both of these dac’s have a digital signal quality
> indicator showing the dac’s ability to lock onto the incoming signal.
> There are 2 levels, a wide bandwidth level which allows pretty much
> any signal to be locked onto and a ‘crystal’ or ‘x’ lock which
> achieves a ‘quieter’ lock with higher quality digital signals.
>
> Unfortunately my mk1 playing flacs/wavs was unable to output an
> ‘x’lockable signal – although flac’s converted to mp3 did generate a
> digital signal that could be x-locked it seemed a bit pointless to
> convert flac to mp3 for ‘better quality’. I tried various tweaks
> including a monarchy dip, a behringer ultramatch and a slightly
> upgraded psu all of which failed to light the x-lock indicator. To
> further rub salt in the would a friend brought round his dpa cd
> transport which comprehensively annihilated the squeezebox in the
> quality stakes – although the ‘box was waaaay ahead in the convenience
> stakes.
>
> This morning the nice man from UPS dropped off my squeezebox 2 and
> after I’d paid the chancellor of the exchequers ransom I connected it
> up and away we went. After a small delay music issued forth and then
> click the ‘xlock’ lights up. Boy the grin nearly split my head in two.
> Over the day I’ve been listening to a lot of my music collection and
> must say that it’s a no brainer to say that the new squeezebox 2 is
> miles better than the mk1 from an ‘audiophile’ quality point of view.
> I would say that, from my admittedly fallible audio memory, the dpa
> transport could be considered still slightly ‘better’ but now they are
> in the same ballpark and one could conceivably prefer the squeezebox’s
> more relaxed presentation to the dpa’s more in your face manners – it
> would depend on the listener. So is that ‘better’ or just ‘different’
> then? I’m going to try to arrange a rematch with the dpa to see how it
> really measures up. Still given that the squeezebox cost £200 and the
> dpa was over £1k new the squeezebox is ahead in my book.
>
> Cheers
>
>
>
>
>
> Julian.
>
>
>