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On 5/5/2021 at 12:52 PM, Kenkuan said:

I was told MU2 could be one year away, if you can waitūüėÖ

 

I don't really have a choice - the MU1 isn't a good fit for my existing DAVE system, as detailed a while back.

And the other main contender, Mini-Extreme, also keeps disappearing into the horizon.

And others like K50/K30/Statement I suspect won't quite deliver what I'm looking for.

 

On a happier note, some recent free config changes to Euphony Stylus on my tweaked NUC server have given unexpectedly big improvements ūüôā. From a purely SQ point of view, I feel I could live with this indefinitely, but I do still want to reduce my box count and spaghetti count, and any change in that direction also must improve SQ to make it worthwhile.

 

 

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10 hours ago, SackATK said:

My previous digital setup included a USB chain consisting of a Sonore opticalRendu streamer, Uptone Audio ISO Regen USB reclocker, and Innuos PhoenixUSB reclocker.  It utilized some very good USB cables and DC cables with some very nice low noise linear regulators cleaning up the DC power from an HD Plex 300W LPS. This setup sounded great!  At the time, it was the best I had ever heard.  I could've easily stopped there and just enjoy. The only downside was the number of boxes and cables and determining how to place everything. 

 

The Innuos PhoenixUSB was a transformational addition to the system and it provided a good lesson. This USB reclocker has an excellent clock and power supply built into the unit.  The clock and the DC power are very close to the parts that need them.  These design decisions allow it to perform at a level above other implementations.  Of course, the same design decisions can be said of the MU1. 

 

So a few weeks back I decided to try the MU1 because it would accomplish a few things for me.  It can replace most of the boxes and cables, it would satisfy a small curiosity with upsampling, and it would allow me to reclock spdif for a few components that output spdif.

 

Initially a Sonore opticalModule fed the ethernet signal to the MU1 using a no name ethernet cable and a Grimm TPR AES cable was used on the output. This combination bested my previous USB chain.  I didn't take notes but I remember their being more low level details and I believe tonality was more correct and everything else was better except for perhaps dynamics.  Now when I did this comparison, the MU1 and the TPR cable were still fairly new and the state of burn in was unknown. 

 

I sold most of my USB chain and I've been happily listening and tinkering with ancillary cables and components. The Grimm TPR cable was replaced with a Shunyata Alpha AES cable and this was an improvement.  Then the Shunyata Alpha AES cable was replaced with a Shunyata Omega AES cable. This was not a subtle change.  Many things improved and there was a noticeable drop in the noise level.  Then I implemented Supra ethernet cables into the system, removed the opticalModule, and most importantly, I added an Innuos PhoenixNet switch between the router and the MU1 and "astounded" is the word I want to use.  With the PhoenixNet, sounds became more well formed and the pieces in the soundstage had more clarity. Transparency was better and the "pops" popped more, if you know what I mean. Each percussive sound felt like a punch in the face/ear drums.  The bass performance was nothing like I've ever experienced in my system.  It almost felt like there was too much super tight dynamic bass... but I'm not complaining. My research indicated the PhoenixNet would benefit the system but to experience the ways the music has improved is something else. I solely stream music with the MU1 so I don't know how playing music internally stored in the MU1 would compare.

 

The MU1 was used to supply the digital signal to Kii Three active speakers and to a Benchmark DAC3/HPA4 headphone stack.  Power conditioning and cables are higher end Shunyata Research. 


Congrats SackATK. Thanks for sharing!¬†Nice¬†decluttering ūüĎć,¬†combined with active speaker systems¬†the MU1 is a great and simple front end solution/hub.

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9 hours ago, SackATK said:

I noticed this on the Grimm Audio website under the MU1 webpage: "Spotify and Tidal Connect support (soon)".  


Thanks ūüĎć

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6 hours ago, TheAttorney said:

I don't really have a choice - the MU1 isn't a good fit for my existing DAVE system, as detailed a while back.


I personally wouldn‚Äôt judge (pun¬†intended ūüėĀ) a¬†device on its specs. In a specs first world it would be better if the Dave would support¬†the full AES/EBU spec. With the¬†AES input at 96kHz max it could impact SQ, but who knows? And if, even a ‚Äė95% ideal spec first¬†performance‚Äô could still be well¬†preferred sound wise.

 

Besides the AES/EBU output, did you know that the MU1 now also has a S/PDIF digital out? Perhaps this is useful in your situation. Link to announcement 

 

I would just to ask for a demo. Trying¬†one of the above mentioned options you know much more. If¬†you like it SQ wise, you could swiftly enjoy your music and already sell 3 boxes.¬†When a MU1 is upgradable to a MU2 (ask a dealer),¬†you decide later if it will also replace the Dave. I don‚Äôt know a lot other one box solutions on the market which offer a Roon server, clock, upsampler, endpoint¬†and¬†DAC as an alternative.¬†And of course, if you don‚Äôt like the MU1 at first you know you can look elsewhere. Imho a ‚Äėbest‚Äô doesn‚Äôt exist, it about personal preference and synergy with other gear and room.

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14 hours ago, FredM said:


Congrats SackATK. Thanks for sharing!¬†Nice¬†decluttering ūüĎć,¬†combined with active speaker systems¬†the MU1 is a great and simple front end solution/hub.

Thanks Fred!  I haven't tried many combinations of speakers and front ends, but the MU1 and active speakers is an excellent combo for sound and simplicity and simplicity for me allows for more bang for the buck.  I also thank you for starting this thread because it's one of the key reasons why I'm currently enjoying the MU1. 

 

 

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12 hours ago, FredM said:


I personally wouldn‚Äôt judge (pun¬†intended ūüėĀ) a¬†device on its specs. In a specs first world it would be better if the Dave would support¬†the full AES/EBU spec. With the¬†AES input at 96kHz max it could impact SQ, but who knows? And if, even a ‚Äė95% ideal spec first¬†performance‚Äô could still be well¬†preferred sound wise.

 

Besides the AES/EBU output, did you know that the MU1 now also has a S/PDIF digital out? Perhaps this is useful in your situation. Link to announcement 

 

I would just to ask for a demo. Trying¬†one of the above mentioned options you know much more. If¬†you like it SQ wise, you could swiftly enjoy your music and already sell 3 boxes.¬†When a MU1 is upgradable to a MU2 (ask a dealer),¬†you decide later if it will also replace the Dave. I don‚Äôt know a lot other one box solutions on the market which offer a Roon server, clock, upsampler, endpoint¬†and¬†DAC as an alternative.¬†And of course, if you don‚Äôt like the MU1 at first you know you can look elsewhere. Imho a ‚Äėbest‚Äô doesn‚Äôt exist, it about personal preference and synergy with other gear and room.

Great point on the dedicated spdif output. I ordered my MU1 mid March and it came with this new output.  However, I believe the firmware that would enable this output is forthcoming.    This feature should be enabled in the next firmware update and I'm hoping it will also include support for Tidal Connect. 

 

 

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Hi everyone

 

its truly a joy to see the thread so active again. I have my MU1 together with LS1be system

the only gadget I have is the Edison creation audiophile switch

 

the simplicity and beauty of the sound makes audio so enjoyable and not frustrating with cables mix and match. 
 

im wondering if anyone is using the new subwoofer?

 

cheers

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19 hours ago, FredM said:

Besides the AES/EBU output, did you know that the MU1 now also has a S/PDIF digital out? Perhaps this is useful in your situation. Link to announcement

DAVE doesn't have an RCA S/PDIF input, but it does have BNC and Optical. Of these, BNC has the highest rate at up to 384 kHz. I expect a converter box/plug would work, but it's just another bit of faff that I'd rather not do.

 

I'm not discounting the idea of getting an MU1 and then upgrading to MU2 in the future - Grimm seems to make that option very easy. I'm just setting my own expectations to a more realistic level of what I can achieve right now.

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14 hours ago, SackATK said:

Thanks Fred!  I haven't tried many combinations of speakers and front ends, but the MU1 and active speakers is an excellent combo for sound and simplicity and simplicity for me allows for more bang for the buck.  I also thank you for starting this thread because it's one of the key reasons why I'm currently enjoying the MU1. 

 

Great to hear that you enjoy your MU1 ūüėÉ
 

 

14 hours ago, SackATK said:

Great point on the dedicated spdif output. I ordered my MU1 mid March and it came with this new output.  However, I believe the firmware that would enable this output is forthcoming.    This feature should be enabled in the next firmware update and I'm hoping it will also include support for Tidal Connect. 


Thanks for pointing out about the firmware to enable the S/PDIF output! I just love Roon/Qobuz/NAS, at the same time I can imagine your preference for Tidal Connect as you mentioned earlier. 

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9 hours ago, TheAttorney said:

I'm not discounting the idea of getting an MU1 and then upgrading to MU2 in the future - Grimm seems to make that option very easy. I'm just setting my own expectations to a more realistic level of what I can achieve right now.

Decision making can be a pain in the @%#.. it’s hard to determine a good match on paper, if not impossible. And even so, also demoing stuff can be time consuming as there are many variables. Some like doing this and others can even add DIY skills in the equation, all good.
 

For me personally, after mixing and matching for quite some time, I’m just glad I made a significant jump forward to the LS1be’s a couple of years ago and later to the MU1. Live is too short. Thanks to these serious steps I experience much more fun listening right now, and thanks to the double synergy I think it’s also more cost effective in the long run (with a lot less hassle). Again, each mileage will vary, all good. 

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16 hours ago, johnli said:

its truly a joy to see the thread so active again

Indeed, and nice to also see other recent Grimm users
 

16 hours ago, johnli said:

im wondering if anyone is using the new subwoofer?

I’m using the sub LS1s-DMF, which already is very tight. Curious about the first SB1 experiences.

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  • 2 weeks later...

After reading this thread, I am really looking forward to this coming weekend - as have an MU1 coming to visit so I can listen to the pairing with my D&D 8C’s.  Will also try it into a Vega 2.1 DAC which I have on loan and finally compare against a Linn KDS 3 (Katalyst) 

Roon Nucleus+ / ER / Linn Klimax DS4 (Katalyst) / Dutch & Dutch 8C / JL Audio F112

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8 hours ago, Evo1668 said:

I am really looking forward to this coming weekend - as have an MU1 coming to visit

And one weekend later I will be visiting a dealer to demo MU1 vs Statement and possibly Taiko Extreme. With a subsequent home trial if the demo shows promise. I'm taking my DAVE and headphones with me. And will also be trying various T+A headphone components while I'm there.

 

If the MU1 works out, then I've counted I can have 1 box + 1 cable to replace 4 boxes and 7 cables (NUC, ISORegen, M-Scaler, 3-rail Power Supply, 2xUSB cables, 2xBNC cables, 3xDC cables), which a a good step towards my downsizing objectives.

 

The only thing that spoils it is that MU1 doesn't have WiFi input (my NUC does), so I will then have to add a WiFi bridge and ethernet cable back into the mix (plus possibly a super switch and super cable) - unless I can persuade Grimm to activate the WiFi that I believe is already built-in to the NUC board they use. However that WiFi limitation is the same for most top end servers, so I'll have the same issue whichever top end server I go for.

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9 hours ago, TheAttorney said:

And one weekend later I will be visiting a dealer to demo MU1 vs Statement and possibly Taiko Extreme. With a subsequent home trial if the demo shows promise. I'm taking my DAVE and headphones with me. And will also be trying various T+A headphone components while I'm there.

 

If the MU1 works out, then I've counted I can have 1 box + 1 cable to replace 4 boxes and 7 cables (NUC, ISORegen, M-Scaler, 3-rail Power Supply, 2xUSB cables, 2xBNC cables, 3xDC cables), which a a good step towards my downsizing objectives.

 

The only thing that spoils it is that MU1 doesn't have WiFi input (my NUC does), so I will then have to add a WiFi bridge and ethernet cable back into the mix (plus possibly a super switch and super cable) - unless I can persuade Grimm to activate the WiFi that I believe is already built-in to the NUC board they use. However that WiFi limitation is the same for most top end servers, so I'll have the same issue whichever top end server I go for.


I am looking forward to reading your conclusions. I have had the MU1 on my watch list for a while and not least because it seems able to make Roon sound good (i have it in the cupboard at the moment unused despite a lifetime subscription).

 

Of course you are going to compare it to two other very fine devices indeed which will make it all the more interesting. 
 

I wonder, is your three rail power supply feeding dc to your Dave ūüėú ? That has been just about the biggest improvement in my system in recent years.¬†
 

Don't be put off my the MU1 not having wifi. I would certainly not want an RF transmitter in my streamer. 

Innuos Zenith + Antipodes K50 + PhoenixNET + PhoenixUSB,

Sablon 2020 USB to Mscaler, WAVE Storm BNC to DAVE (Sean Jacobs external DC4 power)

Pass Labs XA60.8 power amps + Spendor SP200 speakers, ATC150 actives.

 

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On 5/19/2021 at 9:27 AM, SackATK said:

In my experience, the PhoenixNET switch with entry level audiophile ethernet cables made Roon playback sound like it was done on a "MU1+". 


Thanks for sharing SackATK! Good¬†to hear that further improvements are possible, a MU1+¬†ūüėé.

 

I still use stock¬†cables all around. Out of curiosity and without hurry I‚Äôm preparing some changes to experiment on power (eg dedicated wall socket / circuit breaker) and network topology (eg fiber). I‚Äôll share my findings at the timeūüĎć.

 

 

20 hours ago, Evo1668 said:

After reading this thread, I am really looking forward to this coming weekend - as have an MU1 coming to visit so I can listen to the pairing with my D&D 8C’s.  Will also try it into a Vega 2.1 DAC which I have on loan and finally compare against a Linn KDS 3 (Katalyst) 

 

Great, enjoy and take your time. Please share your findings. With the digital AES input the DAC inside the 8C’s can benefit from Grimms upsampling and clocking. 

 

Curious if the DAC from the¬†Vega can be beneficial (it would be an additional conversion¬†as the D&D are doing¬†their magic in the digital domain). With the MU1, Vega, Linn, Nucleus √°nd the various setting inside the 8C‚Äôs you could have a ton¬†of options to explore¬†ūüėĀ.

 

ps. I‚Äôm not sure which format the D&D uses¬†internally, the selectable digital output of the MU1 might¬†make¬†a difference (2FS or¬†4FS). ‚ÄúThis ‚Äė2FS‚Äô option¬†is intended to be used with DACs or active ‚Äėdigital‚Äô loudspeakers that do not support 4FS or that work better with a 2FS source.‚ÄĚ

 

 

12 hours ago, TheAttorney said:

If the MU1 works out, then I've counted I can have 1 box + 1 cable to replace 4 boxes and 7 cables (NUC, ISORegen, M-Scaler, 3-rail Power Supply, 2xUSB cables, 2xBNC cables, 3xDC cables)

 

ūüėģūüĎć

 

12 hours ago, TheAttorney said:

The only thing that spoils it is that MU1 doesn't have WiFi input (my NUC does), so I will then have to add a WiFi bridge and ethernet cable back into the mix (plus possibly a super switch and super cable) - unless I can persuade Grimm to activate the WiFi that I believe is already built-in to the NUC board they use. However that WiFi limitation is the same for most top end servers, so I'll have the same issue whichever top end server I go for.

 
When a wifi connection is¬†preferred, you could use a TP Link¬†TL-WR802N. You can set this small device¬†as a ‚Äėclient‚Äô, after it is connected with your wireless home network¬†(quick search on ‚Äėhow to‚Äô), just connect a short network cable between the TP Link ‚Äėclient‚Äô¬†and MU1. The great¬†thing¬†about this device is that it is powered via USB. So use¬†the¬†USB out from the MU1, et voila,¬†you have a clean direct feed as a bonus ūüĎć

 

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17 hours ago, Fourlegs said:

I wonder, is your three rail power supply feeding dc to your Dave ūüėú ? That has been just about the biggest improvement in my system in recent years.

Don't be put off my the MU1 not having wifi. I would certainly not want an RF transmitter in my streamer. 

The 3 rails power NUC, IR and M-Scaler. I have no doubt that a DC 4 powering DAVE would be a major upgrade, but it is also a majorly big and expensive box that does nothing to help me downsize ‚ėĻÔłŹ. Not out of the question in the future if I stick with DAVE, but I may not stick with DAVE if the MU2 DAC component turns out to be as good as its makers expect.

 

It's "common knowledge" that wifi is bad for hifi. But Euphony Stylus on my NUC has an option to disable networking during play (after buffering the music tracks) - and I can't reliably tell the difference whether wifi is active or not. So to my mind it is possible for certain wifi implementations to not be any worse than ethernet and anyway I'm prepared to take a slight hit for the sake of convenience (as long as it is very slight). If Grimm can make Roon sound great, maybe they can do the same for wifi? Most likely through, they won't want to be bothered with my request, so I'll need a solution like FredM has suggested.

 

15 hours ago, FredM said:

When a wifi connection is¬†preferred, you could use a TP Link¬†TL-WR802N. You can set this small device¬†as a ‚Äėclient‚Äô, after it is connected with your wireless home network¬†(quick search on ‚Äėhow to‚Äô), just connect a short network cable between the TP Link ‚Äėclient‚Äô¬†and MU1. The great¬†thing¬†about this device is that it is powered via USB. So use¬†the¬†USB out from the MU1, et voila,¬†you have a clean direct feed as a bonus ūüĎć

 

Thank you for that - it looks like a good, simple solution.¬† A USB dongle with antenna would be even simpler, but I'm not sure that linux-based systems (which I assume MU1 to be) could support networking into a USB port. Anyway, I have options, but any box with an ethernet cable is subject to improvement, as SackATK has demonstrated - and my natural audiophile tendency would be to faff around with tweaking it. The big plus of integrated wifi is that there's not much to tweak ūüôā.

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Do you guys prefer the NOS, 2FS or 4FS modes? 

To me, NOS has a more down to earth tonality versus what I hear on oversampling. However, oversampling does bring out the (insert your favourite audiophile qualities) but, to my ears, at the expense of slight thinning of tonality. 

 

If you do not compare, both oversampling modes do sound really amazing, especially on large scale orchestral music where it brings out the scale and depth really well. Good thing is we do have a choice which mode to listen to for what we prefer.

 

I guess my innocent question is which is more what the studios intended, is oversampling considered artificial or is this what hi-end is all about?

Gigawatt PF2 >> Paul Pang Quad >> Grimm Audio MU1 >> Holo Audio Spring Wild Edition >> Leben CS600 >> Harbeth SHL5+ 40th Anniversary

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On 6/6/2021 at 10:32 AM, Kenkuan said:

I guess my innocent question is which is more what the studios intended, is oversampling considered artificial or is this what hi-end is all about?


Hi Kenuan,

That‚Äôs a tough question. Without¬†any technical skills which are worth mentioning and no¬†studio experience, I can¬†only guess¬†ūüėč. I ‚Äėthink‚Äô it‚Äôs hard to judge oversampling on its own. In Grimms philosophy¬†it seems that ‚ÄėDAC format matching‚Äô (to relieve the DAC chip from calculation effort) and getting the¬†clock signal from MU1 to the DAC are also relevant. So creating an insanely high upsampling output is not th√© goal (as it¬†could cause more stress for the DAC chip to¬†recalculate and it would be impossible to transfers the¬†clock signal)

 

ps. On your original/FS2/FS4 question: I only use the FS4 setting in combination with the Grimm LS1be’s (via the proprietary connection)


 

22 hours ago, Evo1668 said:

 …

4. Grimm AES direct to the D&D 8C (that gut instinct, eureka moment when everything just sounds as it should, the hidden details you've not heard before, dynamic range, the soundstage rendered in the most micro of details, and oh the emotional connection it was just absolutely staggering at times bringing tears to the eyes. Tried NOS sounded fantastic but 2FS was definitely better, 4FS not working with the 96K board on the D&D.  Although I believe that new 8C's have a 192K board, so should work with 4FS )

 

1 and 2 were using a Nucleus +

3 and 4 using Roon core inside the MU1

 

Tracks used in no particular order were as follows:-

       

 

       
image.png.0c9fbc97516e7051a8ce20460808d56d.png                    
       
The rest is history as they say, and the Grimm has found a very new happy home - it really is like you have purchased a completely new music collection along with the MU1.  I can honestly say I have never heard Roon sound so UPNP like.                    
                     
                     
       
                     
   
                     
 
                     
           
                     
                     
               
                     
                 
                     
                   
                     
                   
                     
               
                     
         
                     
                 
                     
                   
     

 


Awesome, many thanks¬†for sharing your findingsūüĎć
 

Congrats Evo1668, glad to see you like the MU1, I recognise your description on the MU1 abilities, including the emotional connection with the music. Love it! Besides SQ, a very slik set combined with the 8c’s (the other products in the comparison would have a higher box count and cost more..).

 

Enjoy your music and happy rediscovering ūüėÄ

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Thanks FredM for your thoughts. You have a point on the Grimm philosophy. 

I did read an article that mentions oversampling helps to reduce noise caused by timing jitter. This is probably why MU1 is implemented with oversampling as preferred mode. Music is so effortless, clean and focused that I can only call it a magical experience.

 

BTW, 4FS is also my preferred mode to establish the emotional connection with the music. 

Gigawatt PF2 >> Paul Pang Quad >> Grimm Audio MU1 >> Holo Audio Spring Wild Edition >> Leben CS600 >> Harbeth SHL5+ 40th Anniversary

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3 hours ago, TheAttorney said:

Next, replace Statement with MU1 via AES.

 

I might be stating the obvious here, but keep in mind that the DAVE sounds very different via USB and vis AES or SPDIF.

In my system, I get different sound when I get my server's USB output connected to the DAVE's USB input and when I connect my server's USB output to the¬†SRC‚ÄĘDX USB to DX Bridge and then to the DAVE's dual SPDIF input. I much prefer the¬†SRC‚ÄĘDX, which makes me think that the DAVE's USB input is not very good.¬†

It's just another variable to consider when comparing servers and using different inputs on the DAVE.

Affiliated with Sean Jacobs. 

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2 hours ago, Nenon said:

I might be stating the obvious here, but keep in mind that the DAVE sounds very different via USB and vis AES or SPDIF.

Fair enough, but the point about the MU1 is that you HAVE to use AES (or the recently added rca socket spdif) in order to use it's all-important FPGA output that provides all the magic. Whereas the Statement has a great USB output, so in both cases we were giving each server the best chance - even if DAVE may treat them differently.

 

FWIW, the supplied USB cable was a pricey TQ Diamond and the AES was a pricey Audioquest Diamond.

 

Also supplied was a no-name, but solidly made, AES to BNC converter cable that connected to DAVE's BNC input. 

This didn't sound quite as good as the (probably much more expensive) Audioquest,  which re-enforces that cables make a difference.

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