Mola Mola Tambaqui question

b345t

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I'm getting a good deal on one. I currently have the Holo Audio May KTE. To be honest, I think the May is excellent, and coming from the Chord TT2, it really is a no-contest in terms of realism and 3d soundstage that the May provides. I said to myself about two years ago after hearing the May in my system that I will only go for R2R designs because I have never heard a chip-based dac present music in this natural way. But here I am, looking at a good deal on a Tambaqui and I am wondering if it will be an upgrade to my system or just a different flavor. Maybe I should just save money and stick with a higher end r2r dac like MSB or Aries Cerat? hmm
 

sbnx

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The Tambaqui is a good sounding DAC at and above its price point. I can't comment on whether is sounds better than the Holo May KTE. Have you heard the Tambaqui in your system? It is only a good deal if it sounds better. At the Tambaqui price point you would have to compare with the MSB Discrete or the Aqua Formula HD for R2R DACs.
 
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b345t

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The Tambaqui is a good sounding DAC at and above its price point. I can't comment on whether is sounds better than the Holo May KTE. Have you heard the Tambaqui in your system? It is only a good deal if it sounds better. At the Tambaqui price point you would have to compare with the MSB Discrete or the Aqua Formula HD for R2R DACs.
I wish I could, but its an online ad in another country. So would be a blind purchase.
 

ecwl

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I have not heard the Mola Mola Tambaqui. But my gut feeling is that if you like R2R DACs over Chord TT2, you’re unlikely to prefer the Mola Mola Tambaqui over your current R2R DAC. I think in the high-end, DAC architecture plays a dominant role in overall sound characteristics. If you feel that R2R DACs seem to offer you more realism and 3D soundstage, other DAC architectures are unlikely to give you that same feeling.
 
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b345t

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I have not heard the Mola Mola Tambaqui. But my gut feeling is that if you like R2R DACs over Chord TT2, you’re unlikely to prefer the Mola Mola Tambaqui over your current R2R DAC. I think in the high-end, DAC architecture plays a dominant role in overall sound characteristics. If you feel that R2R DACs seem to offer you more realism and 3D soundstage, other DAC architectures are unlikely to give you that same feeling.
Yeah that was my feeling too.. But I guess its not just about the DAC architecture. Everyone comments on how natural and 3d the music is from Lampi dacs, and they are not R2R designs I believe.
 

bonzo75

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Yeah that was my feeling too.. But I guess its not just about the DAC architecture. Everyone comments on how natural and 3d the music is from Lampi dacs, and they are not R2R designs I believe.

My golden gate is. In those days both were available and I preferred the R2R in direct compare.. Since then the chips have been upgraded so I can't comment
 
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b345t

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My golden gate is. In those days both were available and I preferred the R2R in direct compare.. Since then the chips have been upgraded so I can't comment
Have you by any chance done an a/b of your GG with an MSB? I can get a premier at a decent price, but it is a lot of money at €22k.
 

bonzo75

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Have you by any chance done an a/b of your GG with an MSB? I can get a premier at a decent price, but it is a lot of money at €22k.

Yes with the Select, with vivaldi, esoteric k01'x three times, with the Aries cerat second in line dac. There is an MSB Lampi thread where other experiences are noted you could read up. There are guys with premier who own or owned both. PM audioquatrr and ALrainbow as they had both

There is another shootout we did with Stahltek, trinity, aqua formula and neodio origine where neodio did better than the others. The guy whip owned all of them then sold all except the neodio and moved onto the GG and then the Pacific. He still has the neodio too which is good. You can PM him his handle is jazzhead he doesn't read the forum much.
 
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sbnx

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I have the MSB reference and had the Pacific for over a year (both at the same time). Lampi is very much "dial a sound". You can rotate tubes to your hearts content with each combination offering something different. If that sounds appealing to you then go with Lampi. I thought it sounded great on vocals. If tube rolling is not your cup of tea and you just want a/the sound you are looking for then perhaps something else is better.
 

b345t

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Yes with the Select, with vivaldi, esoteric k01'x three times, with the Aries cerat second in line dac. There is an MSB Lampi thread where other experiences are noted you could read up. There are guys with premier who own or owned both. PM audioquatrr and ALrainbow as they had both

There is another shootout we did with Stahltek, trinity, aqua formula and neodio origine where neodio did better than the others. The guy whip owned all of them then sold all except the neodio and moved onto the GG and then the Pacific. He still has the neodio too which is good. You can PM him his handle is jazzhead he doesn't read the forum much.
I have the MSB reference and had the Pacific for over a year (both at the same time). Lampi is very much "dial a sound". You can rotate tubes to your hearts content with each combination offering something different. If that sounds appealing to you then go with Lampi. I thought it sounded great on vocals. If tube rolling is not your cup of tea and you just want a/the sound you are looking for then perhaps something else is better.

Thank you for your input and the great references. I will surely message them. Regarding changing the sound with tubes, I see both pros and cons with doing it. The pros being more about system flexibility with changing equipment and loudspeakers being less of a 'system matching' game; and obviously trying to find the 'ultimate' tube for your current system which has 'everything' you can get out of the dac. On the other hand, the idea of degradation over time does bother me a little, and you will always be thinking after a year or so if the tube is playing at its optimum level or is it on the downturn. I also don't like the sound of the tubes 'ringing' when music is playing loud causing vibrations on the tubes.

There also is a side of me that feels like the dac/source should remain 'clean' and not the place in the system where harmonic distortion should be added. But this is just a feeling I have, in practice nothing matters except for the end result and how great the sound is. What difference is it if you add harmonic 'richness' upstream or downstream.. It is all about the final outcome in my opinion; but its just something inside me that makes me question: tubed converter? Possibly because I have a music background in pro audio and music production that tubes were always added to mic pres and guitar amps; never in the ad-da.
 

bonzo75

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Thank you for your input and the great references. I will surely message them. Regarding changing the sound with tubes, I see both pros and cons with doing it. The pros being more about system flexibility with changing equipment and loudspeakers being less of a 'system matching' game; and obviously trying to find the 'ultimate' tube for your current system which has 'everything' you can get out of the dac. On the other hand, the idea of degradation over time does bother me a little, and you will always be thinking after a year or so if the tube is playing at its optimum level or is it on the downturn. I also don't like the sound of the tubes 'ringing' when music is playing loud causing vibrations on the tubes

The tubes don't degrade in a Lampi like in an amp. If you have a bad set they will fail immediately, but otherwise they will last for tens of thousands. There are only three tubes you need to try really unless you get addicted to tube rolling. The PX25, the 242, then the special globe anniversary 45. It is not about richness of lushness, they all have a different output voltage and some will just match with the rest of your electronic chain and sing. The best results I have heard in various systems have always been when the 242 clicked.

Anyway this is a mola mola thread so I will end here
 
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AMR / iFi audio

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I have the MSB reference and had the Pacific for over a year (both at the same time). Lampi is very much "dial a sound". You can rotate tubes to your hearts content with each combination offering something different. If that sounds appealing to you then go with Lampi. I thought it sounded great on vocals. If tube rolling is not your cup of tea and you just want a/the sound you are looking for then perhaps something else is better.
Lampi is an excellent choice when the rest of the system is lean and fast. It brings some meat to the sound. In a balanced or warmer system, MSB would be a great pick. It's really down to the rest of the system, as both are fantastic manufacturers.
 

snopro

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The Mola Mola Tambaqui was much better than the May KTE in my setup. If you can get it for a good price grab it!
After a while with the May something just doesn't sound right. Maybe the tonal balance, IMHO
 
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b345t

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The Mola Mola Tambaqui was much better than the May KTE in my setup. If you can get it for a good price grab it!
After a while with the May something just doesn't sound right. Maybe the tonal balance, IMHO
Hey thanks for the input. What did you feel about the tonal balance not being right? The bass?
 

Richie42

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Did you end up getting the tambaqui?

Have you considered trying to use hqplayer with your may? It really changes the game upsampled to 1.5mhz pcm. Its impressive.
 

Richie42

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1,5MHz is a lot... What hardware are you running HQ Player on?
PCM upsampling doesnt actually take that much power.

i use HQplayer OS installed on the UP Gateway with IFI elite power supply. microUSBb in from an IFI stream w ifi elite power. and USBa out to the holo may dac. Hqplayer settings are SincM , LNS15 , 1.5mhz PCM the difference is astounding.

airplay , roon everythign that goes through the streamer gets upsampled. only issue is the delayed start (10 seconds) which can cause issues between tracks. just missing the first couple seconds of the song. i wonder if some buffer settings would help with that.

 

AMR / iFi audio

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PCM upsampling doesnt actually take that much power.

i use HQplayer OS installed on the UP Gateway with IFI elite power supply. microUSBb in from an IFI stream w ifi elite power. and USBa out to the holo may dac. Hqplayer settings are SincM , LNS15 , 1.5mhz PCM the difference is astounding.

airplay , roon everythign that goes through the streamer gets upsampled. only issue is the delayed start (10 seconds) which can cause issues between tracks. just missing the first couple seconds of the song. i wonder if some buffer settings would help with that.

I never went so far with PCM upsampling, so I was curious about how demanding it gets. Thank you for the info.

About the delay, have you contacted the HQ Player about it?
 
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Richie42

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i need to look into it.
 

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