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Bricasti Model 3 DAC


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29 minutes ago, barrows said:

I would not make the same assumption.  Getting their XMOS USB interface (I am playing with a $99 DAC board right now which handles native DSD 512 input no problem through its USB/XMOS input) to work at Native DSD 512 is an entirely different thing than coding the OS for their Ethernet Renderer.

It would be interesting to know more about their DSD conversion approach.  Often these "pure" DSD approaches work quite a bit better with DSD 256 and DSD 512-it makes me wonder if they are oversampling DSD in their processing chip to a higher rate.  In any case, with a "pure" DSD converter, Bricasti would be advised that supporting higher DSD rates will only help their sales.

I understand that, but getting the standalone network streamer (M5) to do that shouldn’t be a big issue, and they also haven’t done that. Their DACs can also do DSD through a standard chip-they don’t rely solely on the one bit topography (user chooses which topography to use), so that also shouldn’t be an issue. 

I’m not putting their products down. But they have a few rough edges (there are a few others) that are surprising for products at these types of prices and don’t match up with the extreme attention to detail and high level of execution of most aspects of their products-and all of those seem to be details that are dealt with in software, not hardware. 

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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  • 2 months later...

Still, I do not believe the company which makes the very best pro audio digital reverb unit suffers from a lack of software engineering expertise!

ROON: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModule-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, Dark Matter system clarifiers.                                                       

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1 hour ago, barrows said:

Still, I do not believe the company which makes the very best pro audio digital reverb unit suffers from a lack of software engineering expertise!

You cannot believe whatever you want. Your belief has little to do with the facts. 
FACTS are that they outsourced the  software writing for their network audio card, and are unable to add in even something as simple as HQP NAA, which to anyone with any software writing competence would be a trivial exercise. 

Similar for higher than 128 DSD.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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  • 3 months later...
1 hour ago, barrows said:

We used the Bricasti M21 at RMAF this year, and it is a very impressive DAC on both PCM (using its ladder DACs, not available in the M3) and DSD (using the discrete conversion approach also used in the M3).  

 

Did you compare SQ of the ladder DAC section vs the DSD DAC section?

Thanks

 

Matt

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1 hour ago, matthias said:

 

Did you compare SQ of the ladder DAC section vs the DSD DAC section?

Thanks

 

Matt

What, how?  We only used the R2R DAC for playing PCM and the native DSD DAC for DSD.  With this DAC it did not really seem to make sense to do anything else, or do conversions before the DAC.  As prep time for RMAF is limited, and there is a lot to do, once we confirmed the R2R dAC sounded great for PCM, and the native DSD sounded great, we did not take anymore time for additional testing.

I would expect a formal review of the M21 would compare the Delts Sigma DAC with both the native DSD DAC and R2R DAC on their respective formats.  This is one DAC where an apples to apples comparison can be made between delta sigma vs. R2R (on PCM) and delta sigma (chip) vs. native DSD (discrete) DACs (on DSD).  Given that the various DACs are implemented with the same analog stage, volume control, and power supply circuitry...  Should make for interesting comparisons... 

ROON: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModule-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, Dark Matter system clarifiers.                                                       

                                                                                           SONORE computer audio

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  • 7 months later...
1 hour ago, shahed99 said:

@barrows I see that Bricasti M3 page now says DSD 256 over DoP. Does this mean they've updated their digital input board? I also don't get how DSD 256 can be supported over DoP.

 

Also, does anyone know whether their volume control is active or passive?

There  are quite a few DACs which can support DSD 256 via DoP.  These DACs must support PCM 704.6 in order to do this.  The newer XMOS USB receivers have no problem with PCM 704.6, and the Amanero USB interface can also support this with certain firmwares.

In Bricasti's case, i have no idea what they had to do to upgrade their support, this would be a question for Bricasti directly, i suspect they are quite responsive to direct e-mail inquiries.

 

Edit, additional info:

 

The Bricasti M3 uses an analog, resistor ladder, volume control.  It has to use an analog volume control as otherwise there would be no way to control the volume when using the Native, single bit, DSD DAC section.  I am not sure what you mean by "active" vs. "passive" volume control?

ROON: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModule-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, Dark Matter system clarifiers.                                                       

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Hmm makes sense. Their website currently wasn’t showing email contact information. But I’ll try later.

 

And yes of course they have to have analog VC as oppose to digital VC in order to support DSD volume control support. But I meant whether the analog volume control is active or passive. The later doesn’t has an active circuit to amplify gain over unity. Lampizator VC would be an example of that.

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I still do not understand what you mean.  All analog volume controls are "passive" in nature.  At least the volume control itself is passive.  Whether or not their is inactive buffer and/or gain stage after the volume control is another thing.  But it is a bad design to have a passive volume control with no active circuit after it to buffer the output, without an active line driver after the volume control, the output impedance with vary with the volume setting, and wreak havoc with the frequency response.  Also, with no active circuit after the volume control, the dynamics will suffer mightily.

 

I think you might misunderstand what Lukasz (Lampi) is dong, his DACs actively drive their outputs through he tube stage.

ROON: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModule-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, Dark Matter system clarifiers.                                                       

                                                                                           SONORE computer audio

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I have confirmed DSD 256 support via USB on the new Bricasti DACs (directly from Bricasti).  Apparently this requires a new input board.  Now that it supports DSD 256, I am thinking the M3, via its single bit DSD converter, may be a really fantastic DAC for those who prefer oversampling everything to DSD 256, as I do.  It is very nice to see such a high quality DAC, made in the US, at such a reasonable price.

ROON: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModule-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, Dark Matter system clarifiers.                                                       

                                                                                           SONORE computer audio

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On ‎5‎/‎28‎/‎2020 at 12:54 AM, barrows said:

I have confirmed DSD 256 support via USB on the new Bricasti DACs (directly from Bricasti).  Apparently this requires a new input board.  Now that it supports DSD 256, I am thinking the M3, via its single bit DSD converter, may be a really fantastic DAC for those who prefer oversampling everything to DSD 256, as I do.  It is very nice to see such a high quality DAC, made in the US, at such a reasonable price.

 

Thanks for sharing.

Did you compare DSD256 with the new Bricasti vs your Buffalo?

 

Matt

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1 hour ago, matthias said:

 

Thanks for sharing.

Did you compare DSD256 with the new Bricasti vs your Buffalo?

 

Matt

I do not have an M3 here (yet 😀), I confirmed with Bricasti that the new input board design supports DSD 256, and it also features a few other refinements according to them.  Due to the Pandemic they have not officially announced the new board, but I suspect they will very soon.  I believe there is a US review coming for the M3 soon as well.

ROON: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModule-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, Dark Matter system clarifiers.                                                       

                                                                                           SONORE computer audio

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I wrote to Bricasti as a result of this posting and learnt that older M3s can be upgraded for $700, with the price rising after July 1st. As it turned out though, my unit has the new board already. I had been restricting output from Roon via my Lumin U1 to DSD128 believing that to be the limit. However, lifting the output ceiling to DSD256 and lifting the PCM to enable that level of DoP, then upsampling output to DSD256 I get... nothing. I'm in touch with Lumin about this, but any clues for troubleshooting would be welcome.

Desktop: SonicTranporter i7, Ubiquiti switch, OpticalRendu, Sony TA-ZH1ES, ZMF Verite Open

Main: SonicTransporter i7, Uniquiti switch, Optical Module, Lumin U1, Bricasti M3, Naim 252/250, DeVore Gibbon Nines

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10 hours ago, johnwilk said:

I wrote to Bricasti as a result of this posting and learnt that older M3s can be upgraded for $700, with the price rising after July 1st. As it turned out though, my unit has the new board already. I had been restricting output from Roon via my Lumin U1 to DSD128 believing that to be the limit. However, lifting the output ceiling to DSD256 and lifting the PCM to enable that level of DoP, then upsampling output to DSD256 I get... nothing. I'm in touch with Lumin about this, but any clues for troubleshooting would be welcome.

This is second hand information, but I just got word that DSD 256 capability is for Native DSD, so make sure you are trying to send Native DSD rather than DoP.

It is a little confusing right now, I think this is because Bricasti is in semi-lockdown, and they have not gotten the official specs out yet.

ROON: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModule-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, Dark Matter system clarifiers.                                                       

                                                                                           SONORE computer audio

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Yes, and the Lumin identifies the type of DAC automatically and decides it's DoP. Lumin has sent me a set of questions to ask Bricasti, which I've forwarded to them. I have to say I was completely satisfied with DSD128 over DoP from Roon/Lumin and might end up ruing the day I learnt about the DSD256 option!

Desktop: SonicTranporter i7, Ubiquiti switch, OpticalRendu, Sony TA-ZH1ES, ZMF Verite Open

Main: SonicTransporter i7, Uniquiti switch, Optical Module, Lumin U1, Bricasti M3, Naim 252/250, DeVore Gibbon Nines

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1 hour ago, johnwilk said:

Yes, and the Lumin identifies the type of DAC automatically and decides it's DoP. Lumin has sent me a set of questions to ask Bricasti, which I've forwarded to them. I have to say I was completely satisfied with DSD128 over DoP from Roon/Lumin and might end up ruing the day I learnt about the DSD256 option!

You cannot manually force the Lumin to send Native DSD?  That is a shame.  Please keep us informed as to your progress on this thread.  You may want to get Lumin and Bricasti communicating directly with each other on this, depending on the USB code used in the M3, it may be necessary for the Lumin's code to be updated to accommodate it perfectly.  With linux based renderers, it is sometimes necessary for their code to be updated to accommodate new DACs and native DSD.

 

I will have an M3 here sometime next week, and will be testing it with the Sonore Signature Rendu SEoptical, and will post the results and process of getting DSD 256 working with the Sonore.  I know that Sonore is constantly updating its Renderer software to accommodate new DACs for Native DSD compatibility.

ROON: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModule-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, Dark Matter system clarifiers.                                                       

                                                                                           SONORE computer audio

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Rather frustratingly the detailed app info on the Lumin website shows an option for switching to Native, but this hasn't existed for some time and automatic recognition has supposedly removed the need for it... You're right, I should stop trying to be the middleman. Once Bricasti gets back to me with the requested info and I pass it to Lumin, I'll suggest they work on it without going through a non-technician.

Desktop: SonicTranporter i7, Ubiquiti switch, OpticalRendu, Sony TA-ZH1ES, ZMF Verite Open

Main: SonicTransporter i7, Uniquiti switch, Optical Module, Lumin U1, Bricasti M3, Naim 252/250, DeVore Gibbon Nines

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With the MDx board the USB input accepts rates up to DSD 256 in native format, and PCM 384, and if applicable the network (Ethernet) supports up to DSD 128 native and PCM 384k.
The MDx processor upgrade is $700 until July 15, 
then $1000. The MDx is based on one of the latest Analog Devices Dual Core Sharc DSPs, and provides improved Master Clock Synchronization, resulting in overall improvements compared to previous versions of the processor used. The new MDx board is compatible with all Bricasti DAC models produced and was 
implemented as standard equipment a couple months back, email Bricasti 
with S/N for precise info. Call or email Bricasti for specific info for 
your model as there are a few different upgrade options depending on the 
model.
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On 6/2/2020 at 6:13 AM, johnwilk said:

Lumin has sent me beta firmware for the U1 and all now works brilliantly. Great service on Lumin's part.

So you are confirming native DSD 256 from Lumin U1 to the Bricasti M3, via USB right?  That is excellent news.

How is it sounding for you?

ROON: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModule-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, Dark Matter system clarifiers.                                                       

                                                                                           SONORE computer audio

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Yes, confirming, and it sounds just excellent. I've had to go away for a few days so yet to do extended critical listening – I'll report later.

Desktop: SonicTranporter i7, Ubiquiti switch, OpticalRendu, Sony TA-ZH1ES, ZMF Verite Open

Main: SonicTransporter i7, Uniquiti switch, Optical Module, Lumin U1, Bricasti M3, Naim 252/250, DeVore Gibbon Nines

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Great review of the Bricasti M3 on Stereo Times website - Click here

 

MAIN SYSTEM - SST Ambrosia 2000 Second Edition Preamp and Son of Ampzilla II Amp, dCS Debussy DAC, Bricasti M5 Streamer, PS Audio P3 Power Plant, Aurender ACS10 Server/Streamer, Focal Sopra No. 1 Speakers, JL Audio F112 Subwoofer, Elac SUB3070 Subwoofer, 20TB Synology NAS, Small Green Computer i5/1TB SSD running Roon

HOME OFFICE SYSTEM - NAD M10 Integrated Amp/Streamer/DAC, Auralic Altair Streamer/DAC, Oppo BDP-103 SACD, KEF LS50 Speakers

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