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About davide256

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    Empirical Audiophile

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  1. I've owned the USBridge and the Digione, interesting toys but they weren't that good, the microRendu I had then was better sound and better behaved For far better results in your $1k range you can buy a NUC i3/i5/i7 which will come with wifi ($400~$600 w/memory). The most critical part is to also get a good power supply, HDPLEX 200W is a good choice(~$500), I owned one before upgrading to a JS2 . Even with the best power supply for your NUC you will still get some electrical nasties out through the server 5v USB but you can use this cable below with a 5v tap from the HDPlex to provide an independent 5v USB ($39 with shipping to US). Does look like the HDPLEX 200w are sold out online, might have to wait a few weeks or seek used. That basically leaves the remaining choices of which music OS to use, Audio-linux (~$50) or Euphony (~$300) plus a media storage drive. Both support Roon server and perform better booted to RAM off USB stick (no OS drive needed although Optane memory as HD is nice as a way to get rid of the external USB stick.) https://www.audiophonics.fr/en/various-adapters/usb-b-adapter-cable-for-55-21mm-female-power-supply-p-8332.html
  2. I tried this recommendation by @Abtr and its a significant success for me. While powering a NUC8i7BNH with Uptone Audio JS2 works extremely well, there are still some digital irritants using direct USB connect from NUC server to Gumby DAC that are not present with external Eitr to coax input. Using this with LPS 1.2 @5V eliminated the USB irritants, and for the Gumby fixed some bass "waffling" issues not present with external Eitr. Total cost was $39 for cable ( 2/3's of which was shipping ☹️) + user choice in 5v power supply
  3. Received the Ambiophonics external 5v USB connector, took about a week from France. @Abtr many thanks, its a keeper. Using an LPS 1.2 as 5v power supply, GEN 5 bass is cleaned up and deep but more importantly intermittent irritating edginess has been removed in the treble. Alas, no real improvement using the external Eitr, midrange bleaching still present vs internal GEN 5
  4. I was running a server/endpoint solution with 2 NUC's because of USB harshness issues direct from server . Using an Uptone Audio JS-2 power supply eliminated any need to "outsource" USB connectivity from the media server.
  5. Stereophile at CAF comments on the M3 Sapphires and supporting cast ;,< ) https://www.stereophile.com/content/spatial-m3-sapphire-loudspeakers-linear-tube-audio-z10-integrated-amplifier-lampizator-amber
  6. While at CAF, I bought a vinyl copy of "Avatar" movie soundtrack as I wanted to do a comparison between Euphony and vinyl. Turned out that while the external Eitr sounded sharper on bass and transients than vinyl, the Eitr setup was bleaching midrange /bass tone colors and details. Switching to the built in USB was much closer to the vinyl experience (not bad given that the digital soundtrack is limited to CD quality) but bass bloat, soft transients still applied. @Abtr I've gone ahead and ordered the audiophonics connector, will see if replacing the NUC supplied 5v USB with external LPS 1.2 improves what I hear with Eitr or GEN5 internal USB.
  7. I’m good with a seated listening position and a wider sweet spot. Heck, they are short enough I could put a wide screen TV behind them for the ultimate in music player GUI laziness... black obelisks have nixed that idea so far
  8. I ran across Spatial Audio last year when they were demonstrating the M3 turbos at CAF, very impressive but they weren't quite there for me at the high frequency end vs my Magnepan 1.7's This year they have new models with a full range dome tweeter and I'm seriously considering buying the M5's to replace my Maggies, quite a dynasty change for me since I've not been found an alternative I liked for under $10k since 2011. Like the Maggies they have no cabinet resonance because they have no cabinet enclosed drivers, just a frame the drivers are mounted on. Demonstrated at CAF 2019 were the M3 Sapphires, using an Innuos Zen Mk3 source, Lampizator Amber DAC and Linear Tube Audio Z10 integrated amplifier. It was my favorite room at the show largely because it had the airiness I expect in good playback and bass reproduction was spot on, with a total system cost under $20k. (1)Clarity of reproduction at low volume setting was excellent which is my big bone of contention with the 1.7's... can't play music quietly with them, you lose resolution.(2) highly efficient speakers ~92db/1w. None the less with a 10w amp I could detect a sense of struggle in more complex passages where more wattage was needed for a firm grip in controlling the speaker. But 92 db vs 85 db for Magnepan is a world of difference in amp dollars; I suspect with a 50~100 watt amp you could call it a day with the Spatials vs looking for 200 watts on up for Magnepan. (3) dispersion was very good with the Spatials, you did not have to sit in the center spot to get full range sound although imaging became more diffuse if you weren't in the center spot (4) did I mention the bass balance was spot on even in a small hotel room space... M5 model is 1 15" driver and dome tweeter, impedance of 8 ohms, price ~ $2950 as of this date M3 model is 2 15" drivers and dome tweeter, impedance of 4 ohms, price ~$4200 as of this date manufacturers site http://www.spatialaudio.us/products Curious if anyone has made the switch from Magnepan to Spatial M3 turbos or newer and what their assessment of the speaker was after living with the speakers for a while
  9. A shout out to @austinpop. Thank you for your post about using “full throttle” NUC CPU settings if your power supply is good enough. Doing that was counter intuitive to my past experience, but with the JS2 it worked, improved transparency of Euphony playback
  10. At CAF now. Lots of rooms using Qobuz which is nice but the laptops / MacBooks/Wolf servers used disappoint after having becoming used to Euphony SQ. The rooms using Innuos are a relief.
  11. One of the reasons I believe the AQ Eagle Eye works better for me than other coax is the DBS voltage biasing, I've done DIY exotic coax cable builds before and can't say that the materials I see are in the AQ cable construction are anything special, although to be fair they avoided materials that corrode over time. 2 questions 1) when I plug Lush 2 USB cable between NUC and Gumby I can hear an extremely faint electronic computer "chatter" well below music volume. Using the Eitr eliminates this. I'd like to try displacing the 5v USB to an idle LPS 1.2 I have and see if this changes anything. Is there a simple way to do this that doesn't void your cable warranty? 2) Delock doesn't sell in the US, but iFi markets a product, was it one you tried, if so your thoughts? https://ifi-audio.com/products/spdif-ipurifier/ I've used Toslink before, IME it can be quite good if the devices at both ends were manufactured with serious attention to the Toslink section.
  12. The Hafler bested the amp section of a Prima Luna premium I had before so it looks like my next amp upgrade will be in the $4-$6k range... Magtech, Primare and Hegel are on my audition list. I pinged Schiit to ask about a future external Unison, will relay back any response I get.
  13. Played with different USB cables, coax cables, result remains the same, lowest bass gets stepped on using the internal Gen 5. Just going to hope that Unison comes as an external adaptor option also like the Eitr.
  14. FWIW I was playing around with my Synology NAS and Euphony yesterday, all worked fine until I disabled SMB1, at which point Euphony could no longer see the NAS. And in Windows 10 the shared Music directory while never visible could be accessed by IP address or computername-path after I enabled SMB1
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