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16 hours ago, beautiful music said:


Just out of curiosity what is the other DAC's and streamers did you experiment?


I have on hand a Resonessence Mirus, Oppo205 and ECD MOS16.  Also had various Esoteric players and Chord DACs in past

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Thanks! Am eager to recieve mine... 

Let us know when you hook up the ETL. I am very curious to see if there is a noticeable difference. 

 

I'll try to organize a comparison with the Denafrips Terminator in the coming weeks... 

 

 

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5 hours ago, Norton said:


Yes I have the ETL too but I haven’t tried it out yet.  Most of my time so far has been spent trying to figure out the new UPL.  For me at least it’s a whole new workload  to now setup library as tagged wav.  However, I’ve found that you can get going using sticks set up for the UPL16, it’s just V. hard to navigate them.  So far the biggest headache in my case at least seems to be that the new UPL is fussy as to which sticks it will actually read. 
 

Having said this, I’m currently listening to Barenboim Elgar1 in 24/96 and it sounds just glorious. In one word, I’d describe the sound of the UPL/DAC combo as  “expensive”, as in I spent some time with DAVE in my system a while back and it would be interesting to compare the 2 DACs  back to back on RBCD and 24/96. 

 

Hello Norton,

 

So great to hear some news about your test of those great electronics!

 

Are you saying that you had the very expansive Chord DAVE DAC in your setup in the past ? 

Just to keep you up about some news : EC Designs will certainly propose a new USB cable - cheaper than the UC250 - for powering the Fractal DA96ETL DAC at its best.

So you can be sure that the Fractal DAC will sound better in a coming future, with this little upgrade! 🙂
 
Then, could you please tell us more about the U192ETL sound quality - and especially in comparison with the UPL16?
 
Many thanks in advance and enjoy! Lucky man! 🙂
All the best,
Benoit

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I’ve put in some listening  time with the UPL/DAC96 combo.  My impressions so  far are that they sound somewhat different, rather than evolving from, the previous UPL/MOS: a very substantial, quite forward, “3D” sound, wide soundstage, highly resolving with plenty of newly  heard detail, particularly  impressive with brass, woodwind, piano, plucked harp strings  etc.  Listening to well recorded 24/96 classical downloads I thought I knew well has become quite an immersive experience.

 

In  my experience thats’s a rare  combination, so many dacs offer plenty of detail but the overall sound lacks depth and substance and thus never really convinces as an illusion of real musicians playing  in a  space.  From  recollection of it in my system, DAVE  also impressed through a similar combination of detail and substance; maybe a back to back comparison with DAC/UPL96 would be interesting,  perhaps allowing DAVE to be fed by a Taiko Audio server to level the playing  field a bit, after all there are different ways of doing  “extreme”...

 

I’m concentrating on getting to know the new UPL so haven’t tried the ETL yet.

 

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It would be nice to have this DAC reviewed by Chris - instead of wasting time with yet another run-of-the-mill R2R DAC :) (see a few threads above)

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I was referring to the thread about the musician pegasus r2r. Not saying it may not be a good DAC, but the ECDesigns products are more innovative and interesting, IMO. 

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On 6/7/2020 at 6:50 PM, Norton said:

I’ve put in some listening  time with the UPL/DAC96 combo.  My impressions so  far are that they sound somewhat different, rather than evolving from, the previous UPL/MOS: a very substantial, quite forward, “3D” sound, wide soundstage, highly resolving with plenty of newly  heard detail, particularly  impressive with brass, woodwind, piano, plucked harp strings  etc.  Listening to well recorded 24/96 classical downloads I thought I knew well has become quite an immersive experience.

 

In  my experience thats’s a rare  combination, so many dacs offer plenty of detail but the overall sound lacks depth and substance and thus never really convinces as an illusion of real musicians playing  in a  space.  From  recollection of it in my system, DAVE  also impressed through a similar combination of detail and substance; maybe a back to back comparison with DAC/UPL96 would be interesting,  perhaps allowing DAVE to be fed by a Taiko Audio server to level the playing  field a bit, after all there are different ways of doing  “extreme”...

 

I’m concentrating on getting to know the new UPL so haven’t tried the ETL yet.

 

Hello Norton,

 

Would you please share with us in the coming days your impressions about the U192ETL please? What are the major differences between the U192ETL and the UPL96 according to you?

 

Best,

Ben

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20 hours ago, hopkins said:

I understand that ECDesigns plan on offering a version of the application for RaspberryPi, possibly with a touchscreen.

 

Congratulations to ECDesigns !

 

USBridge Sig with Shanti could be an ideal combo for $400 then

 

http://www.allo.com/shop/sparky-shields/235-usbridge-signature-player.html

Quote

To lower the noise of the USB, we had to lower noise on EACH rail. In total, USBridge Sig uses more than 30 LDOs. Even the SD card power rail has a dedicated LDO. There are zero switching elements on board.

 

Links to purchase Shanti

 

https://www.allo.com/sparky/shanti.html

https://shop.max2play.com/en/allo-shanti-dual-linear-powersupply.html

https://www.sossolutions.nl/allo-shanti-dubbele-lineaire-voeding-ultra-low-noise

https://www.audiophonics.fr/en/hifi-power-supply/allo-shanti-dual-regulated-linear-power-supply-5v-3a-5v-1a-p-14009.html

 

Similarly priced 5V/3A PSU from John Kenny

 

https://www.ciunas.biz/product-dets

https://tirnahifi.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=4652&i=1

https://www.ciunas.biz/product-page/5v-supercapacitor-power-supply

https://www.pinkfishmedia.net/forum/threads/supercapacitor-power-supply-tour.223681/

https://www.pinkfishmedia.net/forum/threads/tour-of-supercapacitor-powered-ciunas-devices.223682/

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On 6/5/2020 at 7:32 PM, Norton said:

In the house...

 

First impressions: DAC sounds very very good indeed - substantial  step up on MOS16.  New UPL seems quite complex to use in terms of software and having files correctly tagged etc.  I’ve only been able to play using my old untagged UPL16 sticks so far.  Unit cheeks look like real wood to me.

image.jpg


So the 96ETL accepts a USB-stick as a source in the front, but can be used also as input to computer USB output also (normal USB B input)?
Looks great!

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25 minutes ago, M_audio said:


So the 96ETL accepts a USB-stick as a source in the front, but can be used also as input to computer USB output also (normal USB B input)?
Looks great!

 

There are two different units:

- UPL96ETL, works only with USB sticks

- U192ETL, input from computer USB output. 

Both can either connect to ECDesigns' own DAC, or to any other DAC with toslink input. 

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2 minutes ago, hopkins said:

 

There are two different units:

- UPL96ETL, works only with USB sticks

- U192ETL, input from computer USB output. 

Both can either connect to ECDesigns' own DAC, or to any other DAC with toslink input. 

Thanks @hopkins! ... finally I understand the 2 USB offerings. The U192ETL Plus the EC DAC does look tempting.

 


ATL DC Blocker > Topaz 2.5Kva Isolation Transformer > Sine SA5 Cryo 5 power strip > EtherRegen switch powered with Ciunas Supercaps 7.5v LPS > Antipodes DXe roon core> EC Designs U192 USB Transport plus Fractal DAC & PS Audio Directstream Junior Dac 'Windom'> Decware SE84UFO3 Mono Amps > TNT UBYTE-2 Speaker cables > Omega Super Alnico Monitors. PH SR4 power supplies.

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2 hours ago, M_audio said:


So the 96ETL accepts a USB-stick as a source in the front, but can be used also as input to computer USB output also (normal USB B input)?
Looks great!

The UPL96ETL plays music from a usb stick.  The usb B input at rear is to connect to a PC which just provides power and runs the controller software.

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2 hours ago, hopkins said:

I have spend some more time with the UPL96ETL and the Fractal DAC.

 

I prepared a key with over 60 of my Duke Ellington albums, without any glitches. 

 

The sound quality is really breathtaking. All the subtelty of the musician's playing is revealed. The sound is much more realistic and engaging than anything I have heard before with digital. 

 

Interestingly, while very good recordings obviously shine, older recordings also greatly benefit (ex: Mosaic's box set of 1932—1940 Ellington recordings). On the later "This One's For Blanton" (duets with Ray Brown) you feel you are sitting in the recording studio, the bass and piano sound "live". 

 

I was looking forward to moving away from USB keys, but that is now simply impossible to consider.  I will be copying roughly 500 of my favorite albums to 10 USB keys, and that should keep me very happy for some time. 

 

ECDesigns' claims of having solved the issues of digital audio reproduction are, IMO, completely validated. 

 

It is important, obviously, to have a transparent system to benefit from their source & DAC. I have various amplifiers. Today i have been using the "Truth" preamp with ECDesigns' own monoblock amplifiers with great success, proving that excellent sound can now be achieved for a reasonable investment. This 1000€ source/DAC is a bargain. John Brown, of ECDesigns, is my hero :)

 

 

We can hope! I wonder why they released the PC connected version if it doesn't get the job done, maybe a server like innuos would match usb stick? 

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6 hours ago, Rexp said:

We can hope! I wonder why they released the PC connected version if it doesn't get the job done, maybe a server like innuos would match usb stick? 

 

I have only had the chance to listen to the "PC connected version" (the U192ETL) in a very basic setup, and maybe it will improve with a slightly more optimized PC as a source. Don't know yet.

 

I am not going to invest in linear power supplies, ethernet regenerators, and all that stuff,  because I don't want all that in my living room, and I don't believe it will reach the quality of the UPL96ETL (USB key device) anyway. But I will try in someone else's system.  I think they released the U192ETL so you can also have the convenience of streaming, in addition to the "uncompromised" quality of USB key playback. 

 

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4 hours ago, hopkins said:

 

I have only had the chance to listen to the "PC connected version" (the U192ETL) in a very basic setup, and maybe it will improve with a slightly more optimized PC as a source. Don't know yet.   ....and I don't believe it will reach the quality of the UPL96ETL (USB key device) anyway. But I will try in someone else's system.  I think they released the U192ETL so you can also have the convenience of streaming, in addition to the "uncompromised" quality of USB key playback. 

 

Just want to clarify if this is a comment on the U192ETL connected to the Fractal DAC? Doesn't sound like you are impressed with it. That is the combination I would be interested in..


ATL DC Blocker > Topaz 2.5Kva Isolation Transformer > Sine SA5 Cryo 5 power strip > EtherRegen switch powered with Ciunas Supercaps 7.5v LPS > Antipodes DXe roon core> EC Designs U192 USB Transport plus Fractal DAC & PS Audio Directstream Junior Dac 'Windom'> Decware SE84UFO3 Mono Amps > TNT UBYTE-2 Speaker cables > Omega Super Alnico Monitors. PH SR4 power supplies.

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5 hours ago, hopkins said:

 

I have only had the chance to listen to the "PC connected version" (the U192ETL) in a very basic setup, and maybe it will improve with a slightly more optimized PC as a source. Don't know yet.

 

I am not going to invest in linear power supplies, ethernet regenerators, and all that stuff,  because I don't want all that in my living room, and I don't believe it will reach the quality of the UPL96ETL (USB key device) anyway. But I will try in someone else's system.  I think they released the U192ETL so you can also have the convenience of streaming, in addition to the "uncompromised" quality of USB key playback. 

 

Put something like W4S RUR (with external LPSU) before U192ETL and you might be impressed.
PC/MAC Output is bad.

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I honestly cannot say anything more about the USB interface (U192ETL) at this point, other than the fact that there is a significant gap with the UPL (keys) when using a "basic PC". I do not have anything better to use it with, or any other similar interfaces to compare it to. 

 

Hopefully in the coming weeks I will be able to listen to it at a friend's house, who has a "top notch" spaghetti bowl made up of Sotm, ER, fancy ethernet and usb cables, power supplies, etc... Perhaps it will outperform other interfaces, but at this point I cannot say. 

 

What I can say is that the DAC is certainly remarkable, and the other components (novel ElectroTOS protocol and interlink, etc...) feeding it as well. So to the extent that these same components are used in the USB interface (U192ETL), which they are, it should give very good results with a better source than mine. 

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17 hours ago, Waldo said:


Hi I heard both UPL96ETL and U192ETL at EC-Designs.  The U192ETL is a remarkable source, offering connectivity with streamers etc. and it has galvanic-iso output, so probably a good update.
However, UPL96ETL performance is fundamentally different in technology. It's a dedicated digital memory player. That changes parameters.
The FRACTAL dac is amazing in itself and sure will turn any musicfile into magic.

Thanks @Waldo Your report is helpful. I already have a modified SD card player which has a magic sound quality, so I'm reluctant to add another files on disks/sticks approach. I'm more interested at this point in finding a way to add this magic to streaming.


ATL DC Blocker > Topaz 2.5Kva Isolation Transformer > Sine SA5 Cryo 5 power strip > EtherRegen switch powered with Ciunas Supercaps 7.5v LPS > Antipodes DXe roon core> EC Designs U192 USB Transport plus Fractal DAC & PS Audio Directstream Junior Dac 'Windom'> Decware SE84UFO3 Mono Amps > TNT UBYTE-2 Speaker cables > Omega Super Alnico Monitors. PH SR4 power supplies.

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