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About dth31

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  1. I hear ya about the "curiosity factor"! The dealer who sold me the Magico Q3s also sells Berkeley DACs. He's 2 hrs away, but he might be curious enough to bring the Reference down for a quick comparison. If I can talk him into it I'll report back.
  2. I asked the question back in Jan as to how the Lio-8 compares to the newer DACs. I own the Lio-8 but I had the nagging feeling that I might prefer the newer DACs to the very well-respected Lio-8. I was right, although I had no idea HOW right I was. I liked the Lio-8 a lot. It was the first DAC I ever owned that sounded almost as good as vinyl. Not that it sounded LIKE vinyl--it didn't--but it sounded really good in it's own digital way. That is a high compliment from this vinyl lover. The Totaldac d1-six tube is in another class. Utterly natural, detailed with beautiful tone and timbre. HUGE soundstage. Generous bass, detailed but not harsh treble. Tonally dense images. Everything I like about vinyl with the strengths of digital without sounding like digital. Haven't heard any other new DACs, so I can't compare the Totaldac to other new DACs. But I love it so much, I feel no need to. Definitely a game changer and keeper for me. Dave
  3. Decided the best way to find out how the Lio-8 compares was to actually compare it. Vincent Brient sent me his newest Totaldac d1-six tube R2R DAC and I've been listening to it for 3-4 weeks now. One of the reasons that I asked the original question was because I've always thought that the Lio-8 sounds like VERY good digital. So I was pretty much shocked to hear the Totaldac. Beautiful tone and timbre. Great detail. Dense images. Very natural. Doesn't sound digital! I hate to say it, because I've always preferred vinyl, but now I slightly prefer the Totaldac. It sounds like REALLY good MUSIC. The Totaldac is staying in the system!
  4. I also use my LIO-8 with a Mac Mini and Pure Music. I keep reading that the newer music servers provide better sound, and I'm willing to believe it. But they virtually never use Firewire connections and maybe you hit upon a reason why Mac mini/Firewire/LIO-8 just "works". I am very happy with the music quality of my system--so maybe I shouldn't worry about it--but have been wondering about the Yggy too! Hoping someone with direct experience will comment. Dave
  5. 5-6 years ago, the Metric Halo ULN-8 was considered to be one of the "best" DACs available. Barry Diament was one of its strongest supporters, and I believe he still uses one in his well-recognized recording studio. I own the LIO-8, and still find it to be very good. My audio dealer told me before listening to it that it was probably the weak link in my system. (He sold the Berkeley Alpha 2 at the time.). Then he listened to the LIO-8 in my system and literally said "Wow! Guess I was wrong." 5-6 years is a LONG time in the DAC world. My question is: has anyone compared a ULN- or LIO-8 to some of the newer DACs? I'm curious especially about the newer R2R or NOS DACs. Dave
  6. Curious if anyone has compared the updated DAC2X to the new Berkeley Audio Design Reference? I hadn't realized that the DAC2X had a substantial upgrade in the last 6-9 months. Phil Gold recently reviewed the XDS1 v2, which he believed was very significant sonically. EMM Labs XDS1v2 With MDAT2 CD/SACD Reference Player / Converter State-of-the-digital-art has been updated! Review By Phil Gold Similar price, so curious. Dave
  7. First of all let me say that I LOVE Jackson Browne's music and this album. Having said that, I am disappointed the 24/192 download isn't way better than the CD. There may be some subtle differences, but the differences (if any) are VERY subtle to my ears. Honestly, the CD sounds VERY good in my system and I am confident I could NOT tell which file is from the CD and which is the 24/192 file. As always, YMMV. Mac mini running Pure Music, LIO-8, VAC Sig Mk2 preamp, VAC Phi 200 bridged amps, Magico Q3 speakers, Synergistic Research cables
  8. I've never really explored chorale music, but I ordered Rutter's "Requiem" to try it out. Oh. My. Goodness. This is one of the most amazing pieces of music I have ever heard. For someone who hasn't really been a fan of chorales, that's saying something. Highly, highly, highly recommended.
  9. When you get around to writing the Mac and Pure Vinyl article, would be very interested to know what sounds better: --turntable directly to ADC, using Hilo as preamp and for applying RIAA in software --turntable to phono to ADC --turntable to line preamp to ADC, applying RIAA in software Dave
  10. My dealer recommended connecting the LIO-8 directly to my amps, as he said that yielded the best sound in his experience. I first connected the LIO-8 to an Audio Note Kits preamp, then to a DIY HifiSupply Tram 2 preamp, then directly to my Pass Labs XA60.5 amps. My bias going in was that I would prefer it with a preamp. However, I definitely preferred the direct-to-amp connection to either preamp. YMMV. Dave
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