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Thread: Help me beat my CD Transport

  1. #181
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    The point is that a pre has requirements to solder and play with caps and current and do various calculations regarding resistor cap etc value. For streamer you plug in some components and download software, nothing dangerous. It is then a matter of tweaks and patience.
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  2. #182
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    Quote Originally Posted by bonzo75 View Post
    It is then a matter of tweaks and patience.
    When it comes to tweaking and patience I'd rather spend my time and effort on essentials like room acoustics and speaker positioning.

  3. #183
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    Quote Originally Posted by asiufy View Post
    (...) Yes, a server is just another component, like your DAC or preamp, that you choose based on the sound, the company behind it, etc. Most people would never consider buying a preamp from kit, yet they're perfectly fine buying a server from parts. Beats me why...
    It is not difficult to understand, I will present my view on the subject.

    The process of selecting and matching servers and other equipment is very different, IMHO it is not a component like others. During decades we listened, tweaked and got experience in component matching and system perfecting. We know feel we understand somehow this process and have defined out preferences. A server is a completely different entity. It is supposed not to have a "sound" but it has one. They all sound different. No one knows why they sound they like they do - "experts" disagree every minute on them. There are too many ways of connecting servers to DACs. The distribution is not clear as with typical components - most servers must be bought mail order on the net, we can not borrow them from local dealers to listen. And most of the time they show as a one man company, that has no evident experience with typical SOTA high-end. Unfortunately 95% of computer audio is blogosphere, nothing else.

    Also, in most public presentations - shows and shops - the sound coming from servers is poor. I have witnessed exhibitors switching to a physical media or analog to save the demo.

    The perceived value is another reason - why paying ten times the price of a top desktop for a machine that is unsellable and we are not sure that we will like? As always, YMMV, I would appreciate to read different opinions on the subject while assembling my server ...
    DCS Vivaldi 2.0 stack, Soundlab A1 Px's while waiting for the XLF successor, EMT927, SME3012R, ARC Phono 3, Lamm ML1.2 Ref, Lamm L2ref, Stealth Dream speaker , Crystal Dreamline ICs, TA XL digital, TA XL gen V power cables, CenterStage footers and Nordost Qkore8's!

  4. #184
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    Quote Originally Posted by microstrip View Post
    A server is a completely different entity. It is supposed not to have a "sound" but it has one. They all sound different. No one knows why they sound they like they do - "experts" disagree every minute on them. There are too many ways of connecting servers to DACs.
    Yes, they do sound different apparently, sometimes very much so. As two friends of mine recently found out to their consternation when they compared their servers directly.

    The distribution is not clear as with typical components - most servers must be bought mail order on the net, we can not borrow them from local dealers to listen.
    Yes, I'd only go with something (like a Baetis) that I can borrow from my local dealer, Goodwin's High End, to listen to in my own system. Otherwise, game over for me.

    And most of the time they show as a one man company, that has no evident experience with typical SOTA high-end. Unfortunately 95% of computer audio is blogosphere, nothing else.
    True. And everyone is an "expert".

  5. #185
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    Quote Originally Posted by Al M. View Post
    Yes, they do sound different apparently, sometimes very much so. As two friends of mine recently found out to their consternation when they compared their servers directly.

    Isn't it the typical noise/jitter combination? Is there anything else in digital?
    Analog: VPI Aries 3, custom isolation/Magnetically stabilized JMW 10.5i/Ortofon A90/Modded & shielded Pass XP-25 Digital: Spectral 3000SL/Heavily modded Alpha DAC Amplification: Spectral DMC-30SV/DMA-500AR Speakers: Heavily modded MartinLogan (custom Mundorf xover, cabling, woofers; structural mods)/Modded REL Cabling: Shielded MIT Oracle 50ic,MA-X/Oracle 90.1 Power: MIT Z-Strips, Magnum Z-Traps; Shunyata Black Mamba CX HC cords, Typhon
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  6. #186
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    Quote Originally Posted by ack View Post
    Isn't it the typical noise/jitter combination? Is there anything else in digital?
    Probably. Both were with ethernet. But as we have been told, ethernet is so good and takes care of all the noise...

  7. #187
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    Quote Originally Posted by Al M. View Post
    But as we have been told, ethernet is so good and takes care of all the noise...
    Can I call bullshit on those who say this, and who obviously do not understand electrical engineering?
    Analog: VPI Aries 3, custom isolation/Magnetically stabilized JMW 10.5i/Ortofon A90/Modded & shielded Pass XP-25 Digital: Spectral 3000SL/Heavily modded Alpha DAC Amplification: Spectral DMC-30SV/DMA-500AR Speakers: Heavily modded MartinLogan (custom Mundorf xover, cabling, woofers; structural mods)/Modded REL Cabling: Shielded MIT Oracle 50ic,MA-X/Oracle 90.1 Power: MIT Z-Strips, Magnum Z-Traps; Shunyata Black Mamba CX HC cords, Typhon
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  8. #188
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    Quote Originally Posted by thmor288 View Post
    Very nice...
    Thanks thomor

    As Ked says building a server is quite straight forward but I guess not everyone enjoys diy tweaking. It certainly reaps dividends as I have recently realized. The technology is progressing very quickly. It is quite likely current, expensive, turnkey solution could well become redundant all too rapidly. Another, personal, reason for the DIY approach although I would like to try out Innuos.

  9. #189
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    Quote Originally Posted by thmor288 View Post
    It would help if you had a clue about the shipping cost so that I could push for the review...

    Also when are you going to post the finished product at your site?
    Shipping is $95 each way.

    I probably will never put a photo, just a description on the site because it's an option for my DAC only.

    Steve N.
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  10. #190
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    Quote Originally Posted by Al M. View Post
    Yes, that's what I would do, but it wouldn't be cheap, unlike the solution dctom was explaining. I'd look for a Baetis server for 8 grand or so (excl. external storage), or perhaps even their top model for around 14 grand.

    But at this point I had much, much bigger fish to fry. Aside from new speakers, the Octave RE320 amp unlocked high-resolution digital performance from my system (from plain Redbook CD) that would never have been possible without it. Buying an expensive server for a similar price instead would never have delivered that (a system is only as good as its weakest link), regardless of addition of hi res or not.

    Good point.
    It can be cheap, in relative terms. If all your local dealer carries is the Baetis, it's his loss, as well as the local clientele. My servers start at $1200, cheaper than most transports, with built-in storage, and no software to install/fiddle with.

    I understand now that a lot of the (non-SQ) benefits of a server would be lost on you, due to your listening habits and preferences, so I understand how you chose not to pursue it. That's perfectly fine. But I feel I must tell you there ARE simple, inexpensive servers out there, like there are tons of people enjoying them right now.
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