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The Mola Mola Tambaqui DAC


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2 hours ago, yyz said:

 

If you get the chance, try the Benchmark LA4 or HPA4 preamp into your chain. They have a 30 day home trial for those people who are curious. I found it was a better sound than direct to amp. It is quiet as the Mola Mola Makua but cost$ 2500. I think it is an incredible component that will help most DACs. It will not make your DAC noisier and likely make you volume control sound better.

Nope, I have thoroughly and exhaustively tested this and have absolute zero interest in going backwards here.

SO/ROON/HQPe: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModuleDeluxe-Signature Rendu optical--Bricasti M3 DAC--DIY Purifi Amplifier-Focus Audio FS888-JL E 112 sub-Nordost Tyr USB, DIY AC, Iconoclast XLR & speaker cables, Synergistic Orange Fuses, Spacetime system clarifiers.                                                       

                                                                                           SONORE computer audio

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3 hours ago, yyz said:

 

If you get the chance, try the Benchmark LA4 or HPA4 preamp into your chain. They have a 30 day home trial for those people who are curious. I found it was a better sound than direct to amp. It is quiet as the Mola Mola Makua but cost$ 2500. I think it is an incredible component that will help most DACs. It will not make your DAC noisier and likely make you volume control sound better.

If true, you get the bonus balanced headphone amp.  Maybe a consideration for the dCS Rossini.  🤔

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19 minutes ago, LawrenceT said:

If true, you get the bonus balanced headphone amp.  Maybe a consideration for the dCS Rossini.  🤔

The specs are listed here.

https://benchmarkmedia.com/collections/all-products/products/hpa4

 

This unit does not have a sonic signature that you will hear. You won't hear this unit which maybe a good thing or bad thing, no flavouring. My understanding is that the 30 day home trial is not available in Canada.

 

A few folks with $100K systems have replaced their $20K preamps with this one. That is not a great indicator to me that this unit is great because I think audio is way overpriced. However, I think a lot of people will find that type of switch something to pique their interest.

 

That incredible noise floor makes me comfortable adding any unit to my system, such as maybe a future Tambaqui, without the preamp hiding the DACs performance.

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On 11/6/2020 at 12:01 PM, yyz said:

However, I think a lot of people will find that type of switch something to pique their interest.

My interest was piqued and switching to a LA4 from my DAC3 direct to the amp has been a definite improvement due to the better volume control, especially at low to moderate levels.  I now have a full Benchmark stack so system synergy is a real consideration.

RIG:  MB Pro - Benchmark DAC3 L - LA4  AHB2 | Paradigm Sig S6 Cables:  Van Damme, Canare 4S11, Lifatec optical, Wireworld and IsoTek power

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On 11/4/2020 at 11:50 AM, The Computer Audiophile said:

Agree. Even rooms made for audio have issues :~)

 

 

My only thing is this - how can one be certain they are hearing the DAC, the amp, etc... without knowing the characteristics of the room? More than likely one is hearing the room's effects on the DAC and that doesn't translate to my room, your room, or any other room.

 

It's all good though. This is a fun hobby and as long as we're having fun and enjoying it, that's what counts. 

Slam some $$$ headphones on the head and the room is gone, but of course the headamp and source providing the music will always be up for argument.

The Truth Is Out There

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  • 1 month later...

Yikes!

SO/ROON/HQPe: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModuleDeluxe-Signature Rendu optical--Bricasti M3 DAC--DIY Purifi Amplifier-Focus Audio FS888-JL E 112 sub-Nordost Tyr USB, DIY AC, Iconoclast XLR & speaker cables, Synergistic Orange Fuses, Spacetime system clarifiers.                                                       

                                                                                           SONORE computer audio

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the video should come with an advisory.  I would think "Mature Audience" given the violence done (and to a perfectly innocent piece of gear).  I wonder who did the mod - maybe a "friend" who is an "expert."  If not, am curious how much it costs to kill a quality component these days.    

 

That said, honestly, I've added a few things to the inside of equipment I owned in my earlier years in this hobby.  Always followed a couple of rules though:  do no harm, do nothing that cannot be easily reversed, always apply the tweak after the equipment was thoroughly settled in and the sound was very familiar, add only one tweak at a time.  Over the years, my conclusion was to own gear that didn't need tweaking.   Which is what the Mola Mola gear is to me.  

Mola Mola Tambaqui / Kubala-Sosna XLR / Mola Mola Kaluga / KS biwire / B&W 803 D3

Ethernet:  iMac/Roon > ... in-wall 5e ... > Sonore opticalModule [Sonore 5V LPS] > UpTone EtherREGEN + Cybershaft OP13 [UpTone JS-2 LPS] > Tambaqui ( = DAC/Roon Endpoint/preamp)

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2 minutes ago, barrows said:

 Everyone should note that any changes will almost certainly completely void your warranty

 

which does not help the resale value.

Mola Mola Tambaqui / Kubala-Sosna XLR / Mola Mola Kaluga / KS biwire / B&W 803 D3

Ethernet:  iMac/Roon > ... in-wall 5e ... > Sonore opticalModule [Sonore 5V LPS] > UpTone EtherREGEN + Cybershaft OP13 [UpTone JS-2 LPS] > Tambaqui ( = DAC/Roon Endpoint/preamp)

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8 hours ago, firedog said:

Not really. You're only showing your own prejudices against people who spend big money. 

 

My prejudice isn't driven by jealousy, it's driven by incredulity :-) For this type of device you can't massage any more performance out of it after a certain point. I'm pretty sure it's no where near $12K.

 

So I'm not surprised by the person chasing what they are chasing at $12K for a DAC taking it one step further...

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30 minutes ago, plissken said:

 

My prejudice isn't driven by jealousy, it's driven by incredulity :-) For this type of device you can't massage any more performance out of it after a certain point. I'm pretty sure it's no where near $12K.

 

So I'm not surprised by the person chasing what they are chasing at $12K for a DAC taking it one step further...

 

The Tambaqui is $13,400.  It includes a Roon endpoint streamer and preamp function.  It costs less than the Soulution 760, that has the same functions, and costs $72,000.  

 

Of course, if you are looking for only a DAC, there is always the Wadax reference DAC, which costs $145,000.  And if you are an analog guy, there is the TechDASAir Force Zero Turntable at $450,000 (according to one source, the median cost of a house in the US is $200,000).  

Mola Mola Tambaqui / Kubala-Sosna XLR / Mola Mola Kaluga / KS biwire / B&W 803 D3

Ethernet:  iMac/Roon > ... in-wall 5e ... > Sonore opticalModule [Sonore 5V LPS] > UpTone EtherREGEN + Cybershaft OP13 [UpTone JS-2 LPS] > Tambaqui ( = DAC/Roon Endpoint/preamp)

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...and selling a relatively small number of units of anything translates to increased cost per unit.

 

And how do you roll in R&D costs, across time? Holy mackerel. And risk.

 

The cost of risk is a typically unspoken/hidden cost. 


Guys go for years living on a spouse paycheck, taking a second, etc.
 

High-end anything costs a lot, according to the characteristics of a given population to afford and desire the thing for sale. No body needs another freakin new dac.
 

In these conversations with friends, on ordinary goods and services (plumbing, coat, car), I find when people think something is outrageously expensive, it's because they "think" it should cost less. They may not be informed by why something costs what it does: it just seems too much.

 

Plain example: I used to play table tennis--it's OK to call it ping-pong if you like--at a fair level. I was an assistant coach at a university in Japan for players on scholarship--for ping-pong. Quit laughing.


Talking with non-playing friends, they could not believe my "racquet" was about 200-250 bucks. And I would routinely change rubber at 50 bucks a pop. They thought I was nuts.

 

But actually, they just didn't see the value or how it impacted the elements of the game.
 

Lastly, I think many folks express their comments based on what they think a thing should cost. And that's a greasy slope.

 

I'm not meaning to compare @plisskento my dopey friends; he can speak for himself. I'm just sharing my observations. I would like to pay about 200 bucks for a Mola Mola dac. That seems right. 😉

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53 minutes ago, barrows said:

I believe @plissken has not actually listened to a Tambaqui, and is of the belief system (based on no listening experience of the Tambaqui) that there is no DAC which could possibly sound better than, say, a Benchmark.

 

I'll take those odds if this is an offer... You were in the thread with a dealer of Mola Mola questioning the ROI (Keith of Purite' Audio).

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11 minutes ago, MarkusBarkus said:

...and selling a relatively small number of units of anything translates to increased cost per unit.

 

And how do you roll in R&D costs, across time? Holy mackerel. And risk.

 

The cost of risk is a typically unspoken/hidden cost. 

 

Benchmark's business model seems to do very well for them.

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