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HOLO Audio MAY DAC


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I've read more than a couple times that people are preferring PCM over DSD with the May. DSD being a bit too soft and polite. While you can certainly upsample or even just pass through PCM with HQP, DSD is it's forte. You can eval it for 30 mins before needed to restart. If nothing else it's interesting to hear all the variations of filters and noise shapers even if ultimately you choose not to use it.

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8 hours ago, MichaelHiFi said:

I did email Tim.

 

Please post for all to know when you find out. I too have not received any response to my initial query to Tim. I suspect he's taking time off since all of his colleagues are too.

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I've searched and not found any, does anyone know if any of the HoloAudio DACs support discrete HEX IR codes?

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On 2/15/2021 at 6:33 PM, Extreme_Boky said:

Once the handshake is done, the +5V is not required any more and it can be disconnected. 

Here's what Tim said in reply to my question about the 5V line.

 

'USB port needs 5V for handshake. So I just say these is zero advantage to make a cable without this 5V connection. Our usb module is isolated and does not use the 5V for anything other than the handshake. It’s self powered and ultra low noise voltage regulators. No worries. Hope you don’t bother with the usb non standard cable as it will only create issues with connections snd give no other advantages'

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On 2/15/2021 at 9:27 AM, Miska said:

 

Ahh, yeah, could be that CoreAudio driver has changed a little if you have Big Sur. That would explain why DoP is not working, it needs 24-bit (DAC Bits set to 20 doesn't affect this).

 

 

Hi Jussi @Miska

 

When John Atkinson measured the Holo May DAC he stated:

 

An increase in bit depth from 16 to 24, with dithered data representing a 1kHz tone at –90dBFS, dropped the May's noise floor by 38dB (fig.10). This implies a resolution of more than 22 bits, which is the highest I have encountered, even exceeding that of the 21-bit resolution Weiss DAC502. Reference: https://www.stereophile.com/content/holoaudio-may-level-3-da-processor-measurements

 

Based on this should we still set DAC bits to 20 or should it be set to 21 or 22 or 23?

 

 

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Thank you for the info and graphs. Much appreciated. How about if my I2S output is limited to PCM192, with NS9. How unfavorable would the noise be at 20 bits?

 

I prefer simple HDMI cable vs. USB 'stuff' but I will try both to see if either is audibly different. I expect not. I don't yet have the DAC to test, waiting for delivery.

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Thanks to all of you that have shared your impressions, experience and knowledge of the May-DAC family.

 

My order was placed right at the start of Chinese New Year so I don't expect I'll see it until early April.

 

I've read the entire thread and certainly would like to read more, after a few more months have passed, of your impressions.

 

I'm coming from the past 3 years with a PS Audio DirectStream DAC. I replaced the output transformers and added a Farad supply for the analog board. It really bloomed but I'm ready for a change and next level. I may have shared this before, my apologies.

 

Did you find it completely settled by 500 hours or did it take more like 1000 hours?

 

Is USB straight from source as good as SU-1 KTE or Matrix spdif2 (I have both, along with an Intona 4055-C). I'm thinking none of these will do anything for the new USB input.

 

I thinking the May L3 will pair very well with my tube-input pre and amp. ;)

 

Here's my system:

 

578052537_ScreenShot2021-02-19at5_13_54PM.thumb.png.16bbf078cd7aed3e7751b020fd8bea5f.png

 

 

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Muchas gracias

 

To date I have kept my audio addiction spend to roughly 10% of your spend. My heirs will be happy. Is that all equipment or are you building a room?

 

I downsized to a single-level 1300sq. ft. home 5 years ago and lost my dedicated space. But with the very sophisticated DSP (HQPe, HAF convolution and Room Shaper) the ATC sing exceedingly well in my living room space of 18'x14'x8' on the long wall. I replaced the caps and resistors in the filter network and was astonished at the increase in resolution and yet still zero fatigue. ATC knows how to make drivers, but cheaped out on the parts...though to be fair this NOT an expensive speaker.

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Congrats on the new home!

 

When did you order? and which level? It's going to be a long wait. 

 

My HT is completely separate. Well, the subs are shared using multiple inputs. Everything but the speakers and amp are in the adjacent guest room closet.

 

IMG_1604.thumb.jpeg.9bf2c079d58b7e63bb2a463e345976ed.jpeg

 

 

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I'll be interested to hear your impressions of the May vs. Spring and whether you think the SU-1 improves the May the way it does the Spring.

 

Hopefully you've had the May powered on for the 3 weeks. Even without signal some run-in will occur.

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I understand used May KTE or any 'level' are a rare breed. Lucky bastard.

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4 hours ago, Dr Tone said:

 

No 12V trigger, too bad.

That’s not good. I’m sure a workaround could be crafted but it shouldn’t be necessary. 

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33 minutes ago, Diavolo said:

Assuming the power "on" condition is retained after recovering from a power loss, you can use a Wemo or some other smart outlet.

Sure, but I don't want my amp to run through a wifi controlled outlet and mine doesn't return to powered on state without the trigger or a button press (by the way I find the TP-Link wifi outlets far more reliable than the Wemo). I would prefer to take voltage from an unused single-ended output and trigger a relay that latches 12v for the amp to turn on as if there was a trigger out.

 

It's an oversight for sure. Shame as I was considering it to replace my hybrid tube preamp. I might still but this will cause me to hesitate.

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On 1/26/2021 at 1:21 PM, John Hughes said:

I leave me be running all the time.  

Has anyone measure the power consumption with the front panel button 'off'? Is the unit completely off like the rear rocker has been switched or is there some power consumed still?

 

Ideally, the front panel will switch off the power hungry devices but keep the temp sensitive devices on all the time. These may be one in the same in the May...

 

Just curious while I await delivery,

 

P.S. I messaged Tim about the lack of 12V trigger. He says it's not a common feature on preamps (less than 10%) but will talk to Jeff about the possibility in the future. The last 2-3 (all of them) preamps I've add over 20 years have had a trigger out...but I also looked for those that had them. For now I'll stick with my hybrid tube preamp.

 

Thanks

 

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31 minutes ago, GoldenOne said:

Yeah its a shame that wasn't added.

 @GoldenOneare you GoldenSound on Youtube? If so, is your May DAC review pending?

 

The wifi outlet idea is a good one. I can see it working without issue just a minor inconvience. How about using one of the unused XLR outputs to latch a relay that will in turn latch a 12V supply to trigger the amp? Seems like a simple circuit but there could be more to it than I'm imagining...and certainly wouldn't want to damage the output stage of the May DAC.

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7 hours ago, GoldenOne said:

Yeah that's me :)

@GoldenOne

 

Interesting that you compared the Prozor to the Apple dongle.

 

I'm actually using the Apple dongle DAC with an old iPhone 7 and it has impressed me. It's not the last word in resolution but it's getting me by while I wait...

 

I toasted the analog board on my real DAC, PS Audio DS, and I've not received it back from repair yet (under warranty no less!)...and I await delivery of the May.

 

 

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Impressive what can be done in such a small $8 package!

 

I’m 3 weeks into my May wait.

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1 hour ago, Diavolo said:

Rest assured it will be totally worth it. 😊

 

 

I’m old enough to remember waiting for mail order purchases to arrive. I enjoy the anticipation often lost in this ‘right now’ world. I ordered right at the start of Chinese New Year holiday so that will add a couple weeks.

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I very much enjoyed reading your rambling. Thank you.

 

I’ve got a SU-1 KTE as well and will try with the May but I suspect it won’t do anything.

 

is the kggg a preamp?

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18 hours ago, madfonzy said:

 I got my last Xmas eve and still thoroughly enjoying it.

Nice Christmas present to yourself. How did the run-in experience go? Good days, bad days or just a little off for some days?

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On 3/4/2021 at 3:22 AM, mevdinc said:

Although not at all surprised, as a long time ATC user it is still good to hear you really liked their sound.

I evaluated 18 different stand mount speakers before settling on the ATC 11. It was less expensive to buy a used pair from a gent in the UK than new in the US. He upgraded to the 19. I simply don’t need or want anything larger than the 11. Would I like the larger, I sure think I would in a larger space. I understand the clear, transparent while remaining  completely non-fatiguing is consistent through the line.

 

I’m happy I went to the minor trouble to replace the simply bad binding posts, wiring, sand cast resisters and ok caps. The drivers are top notch!

 

I missed LP records by just a few years. My older sister had a few dozen but the cassette could go anywhere with me and that was at the core of my loving music. The compliment to my life would have been lost if all I had was records.

 

Now that I’m much less out in the world active than my adventure days I’m completely satisfied with all digital. I truly don’t have room for gear nor records now either.

 

Quicky scrap wood shelf for the May dac. The power supply shelf is already done. This straddles it but transfers all of its vibration into the shelf below the PS.

 

 

95F3AD55-6368-4B53-BE2A-9308D6C5C0C5.jpeg

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