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About chrille

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  1. Very nice shot! And good composition with the reflections in the water. Makes me regret I sold my motorhome in Canada. The Rockies both in the USA and Canada are wonderful in September October. But I guess you shot it on an iPhone or similar? With lack of resolution and a bit short depth of field, showing a bit especially when magnified. And what's that grey area in the bottom left corner? A bit like a dac without the HMS. Nothing new from Chord at RMAF I guess? Cheers Chrille
  2. With the exception of well done stage directed Opera which is VERY rare these days, and sometimes pianists like Juya Wang or Khatia Bhuniatisvili and conductors whose conducting is interesting to watch, I normally listen to music with FIRMLY closed eyes most of the time. There are some Youtube channels and sites like the GSO LIVE from Gothenburg which I follow quite regularly, but I find it very uninteresting and even disturbing to have to watch close ups of say an oboist with puffed cheeks and a red face and bulging eyes. Close ups of fingering on strings and keyboards or winds and and such can be good, but especially wind players' faces while playing, are normally best seen at a distance imho. Unfortunately it seems far too many sites insist on facial close ups, for what reasons I don't know? Nor am I interested to see the glottis moving in close up of any singer. Regarding Digital Concert Hall I will try a free week again from an offer they sent me recently when the BBC Proms are over. But not a day before! I am fully immersed in the BBC Proms and although it would have been nice to see Juya's fingers o the keyboard in Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto last night I enjoyed her amazing technique fully via headphones and decent SQ via BBC Radio 3. She played the first movement of Gershwin's Piano Concerto live from Schönbrunn Vienna not long ago with the VPO and I have to admit, it was a GREAT JOY to watch. She looked like a playful kitten conjuring musical magic from that Steinway ! I checked out DCH some years ago but was not impressed with their SOUND QUALITY then. I even contacted them and asked why they put all that effort into HD Visuals, but relatively low res streaming sound? The answer I got was that according to their tests nobody could hear any difference between the native 24/96 they recorded at then, and the low res streaming quality anyway! Unfortunately I could. Cheers Chris
  3. The Qutest has obviously just been awarded an EISA award this year. I bought a Qutest last year and I am using it with an Chord Hugo MScaler. To my ears and with my headphones HD800 and HEKV2 the Qutest on its own was a better option for me with a good headphone amp added. Hugo 2 did not drive either of my headphones with enough authority and weight with LARGE SCALE NON COMPRESSED classical music. With an Mscaler added I am closer to both a TT2 and a DAVE/HMS than I would be with a Hugo 2. The Mscaler is imho absolutely essential with all Chord dacs, including DAVE. To me its influence to the end result is so important that I prefer my Qutest /HMS combo over a DAVE on its own. PS it sounds better with a battery powered psu compared to the supplied smps as well. Cheers Chrille
  4. Correct, regarding most of the LSO Live releases.But there are some exceptions luckily. Both Berlioz's Requiem and the Gergiev Mahler 8 I mentioned were recorded live in Saint Paul's Cathedral. But there and where the BCC Proms actually beginning tonight 1930 GMT and running almost daily until early September,are recorded, the acoustic problems are the opposite of the those at the Barbican. Both the Royal Albert Hall and Saint Paul's are huge venues and have very long reverberation times. Cheers Chrille
  5. Well the good thing is it is still there at least. But apart from the place that demos the BIG Avantgarde Horns most others are cramming too much into too small spaces. My favourite showroom in Singapore and one of the few with a very nice dedicated BIG listening room for BIG speakers is AV INTELLIGENCE at Millenia Walk not too far from the Adelphi, 5-10 minutes walk. I'd LOVE to hear the Hugo MScaler and the dacs that go with it via Andy's biggest speakers in that room. Unfortunately I don't think he is selling Chord's dacs yet. But if you're visiting Singapore don't miss his place. Cheers Chris
  6. Well I only have the Solti on LPs and it sounds quite compressed compared to both the MTT on SSF and Gergiev and LSO LIVE respectively. But yes the Solti gets a spin too once in a while. And I guess the Blu-ray has more of the dynamic range of the master tape than what was cut onto the LPs. Another recommendation for Mahler's mighty 8th,would be last year's binaural live version from the BBC Proms if that one is still online? Very spacious indeed. More on the topic of dacs and such, how big or what difference would say there is between the Wave Storm and your Habst BNCs with your HMS/TT2? I am currently comparing Wave Stream and Storm both via headphones and speakers, and I am honestly quite impressed by how much both improve SQ compared to the stock BNCs of my HMS. I did not expect BNC upgrading to make such a big difference as it does to me. PS. I'd be interested in your take on TT2 against DAVE next time. And finally , Have you heard Hariprasad Chaurasia's live performance recording from the Herkules Saal? If not, don't miss it, great stuff imho. And if you ever go to Sri Lanka I can recommend the Ibn Battuta Suite at Cinnamon Rock Hotel in Galle. Cheers Chris.
  7. Like you I always bring my own reference tracks for any serious auditions of HIFI equipment of any kind. Regarding Singapore and the Adelphi which I guess must have been the shopping mall you are referring to,unfortunately it is not quite what it used to be any longer. But there are at least still some serious high quality shops left. One of the so called "dedicated headphone shops"Jaben, even has a desk selling gold watches . And others have noisy coffe machines next to very highend equipment. And only a couple have rooms big and good enough to demo big speakers and an environment suitable for serious listening comparisons. The open doors onto a noisy mall policy, has hit the Adelphi too. Most shops cram too much midfi stuff into a too small room imho. Many of the former HIFI shops have been replaced with hairdressers saloons and specialist dental care and what not. The Adelphi used to be my Temple of Audio worship in Singapore but it has lost some of its former attraction. But yes I too bought my Chord dac from one of its shops and some headphones too. I bought the Hugo MScaler in Malaysia which is cheaper than Singapore on most things these days. The problem with KL is that the shops are spread out over a huge area of Klang Valley. So getting from one good dealer to the next one can take up to an hour of travel. Singapore and the Adelphi in particular, still rules over KL in that respect. PS I did not really expect the PS Audio to beat the HMS either. Nice read though from austinpop again,although I would have preferred more recent hi res symphonic classical music than Solti's Mahler 8? Imho MTT's Mahler 8 with the SSF is a better recording than the 70s DECCA. It is if I am not wrong also a native dsd recording? But he included one of the Nidaros recordings from 2L which I know well enough having spent a week there photographing for Morten at another project with the same forces. On the other hand no mention of native dsd listening material which is what PS Audio is mainly about,right? Anyway his playlist made me curious about both the Ibn Battuta album and the Indian music one. One of my favourite classical Indian Music albums, is the live recording from the Herkules Saal in Munich, with Hariprasad Chaurasia playing his "Magic Flute". Cheers Chris
  8. Nice report Austin. But did you get to hear any new interesting headphones as well? Was Quad.de there with their new version of Jecklin Float? And did you hear the RAAL SR1A? And what about the new " HEDD" headphones supposedly "fastest of them all"? As far as 1M taps are concerned, to fully recover 24 bits 256 M taps is the target if I remember correctly? But in Singapore last year Rob said he did not think that would happen within his lifetime. But maybe 10M are within his reach now? And back home again, how do you feel your TT2/HMS are holding up against the best of dCs and others you heard in Munich? Your reports has made me want to go there next year. I have been to Munich many times,but never to the audio show. I used to spend quite a few summers in nearby Salzburg which is a great city for live music too and we went to Munich with our students regularly. Time for a revisit to my old haunts next spring or maybe earlier. PS those ribbons look a bit like my electrostatic speakers or Maggies. But if I could afford and would even want the big MBLs I would put them behind a screen, they are just too ugly imho. I have heard many other speakers that as the ribbons in your pic both look and sound better under the conditions I have had MBL demoed. Was Martin Logan there with their Neolith? Cheers Chrille
  9. The Gryphon Pendragon was one of the most impressive speakers I have ever auditioned with classical music a few years ago in Singapore. I wonder how the Martin Logan Neolitic compares to the best Gryphon speakers?
  10. Thanks for another great and very informative review! The AKG 1000 is the headphone Jared Sacks used as monitoring headphones at recording sessions for the Mahler series. Unless he has changed recently ,those are what he used at the Mahler 3 sessions too. I heard his pair during the Mahler 5 sessions in Budapest. Very open and very different to most other headphones except the newer Myspheres and the old and NEW Jecklin Float electrostatic headphones. Earspeakers would maybe be a better term for that type of headphones. And very probably also the now much talked about RAAL SRH1A ribbons which I hope to audition next week in Singapore for the first time. I have also yet to hear the NEW supposedly much improved over the old ones,Jecklin Floats but I have an old pair still back home. And like the AKG1000 they deliver some the most open "out of the head" headphone listening available. But are not very good for deep bass. The BIS team in Minnesota monitor with Stax electrostatics I think. I haven't been to any of those sessions. But at sessions in Gothenburg Sweden they used Stax electostatics when I was there. And I believe the recording engineer who introduced me personally to HD800, now also has a pair of Stax headphones as well. So I am a bit surprised no electrostatics were included in your review at all? The very resolving but a bit too bright,Utopias sound too upfront and to "small" soundstage-wise with classical symphonic material, in comparison to the AKG1000 imho. Very impressive in some respects, but tiring in the long run for me. For classical music and large scale symphonic music in particular, which I listen to almost exclusively, I agree that the HD800 still are a VERY GOOD choice. And this winter I have been travelling with my old HD800 with the velour Dekoni pads. To my ears they do tame the treble peak a bit compared to the orginal pads and are much more comfortable. And with Qutest/ HMS I get a lot of musical enjoyment from that combo. Cheers Christer
  11. Hello Matt, I am personally not stating the above as facts, I am merely and hopefully this time, correctly, quoting Rob Watts. I have quite a few DSD recordings especially from Channel Classics that I play often and like a lot. I also sometimes wonder why Rob finds DSD so bad? I am also aware of the fact that some companies still record in DSD64 in spite of the inevitable noise problems involved in post processing DSD64 recordings. I personally think that DSD64 raw and unedited can sound very transparent and in some ways more listenable than some pcm which still even in hi res, sometimes suffers from hardening and digital ringing that can be painful to hear. I sometimes prefer the slightly softer than live sound of DSD64 over hard ringing pcm. And I would absolutely love to hear the complete DSD256 recorded version of for example Mahler's 3rd which Tailspn recorded with a very simple five mic rig in parallel with Jared Sacks DSD64 Grimm multimic take already released. In that particular case and long before I had an M Scaler it was quite clear to me that at least via my systems both headphone based and via electrostatic speakers, that both the DSD128 ,the DSD256 and DXD samples from the sessions sounded closer to how I have myself heard that orchestra sound in that hall during the sessions for M5, than the slightly less resolved and softer but still very good DSD 64 version. My personal guess is that neither DSD 256 nor DXD are quite enough to capture a symphony orchestra in all its glory. I suspect that maybe 32 or even 64 bits and a sampling rate of 768khz may be necessary to do it full justice. But I also have reasons to suspect that Mr Watts actually knows what he is talking about very well and at least since first hearing his Dave/BLU2 and now Dave/HMS and Qutest /HMS, what I keep hearing from my best masterfiles both DSD and PCM tend to confirm his claims. It may unfortunately be a fact that the issue you hope can be solved in the next version of this dac is in fact an inherent nonsolvable issue of DSD as a format? One thing Rob Watts keeps mentioning as a really major problem with DSD apart from the well known and undeniable noise issue with DSD 64 in particular, is the softening and blurring of transients. And to me it is an undeniable fact that music in fact is simply a series of transients. Cheers Chris
  12. That is basically the same question I was asking and with a suggestion of a combo that might be more resolving and ultimately "better", than the "Ferrari dac". According to the designer behind that combo ie Dave/HMS, DSD is a fundamenally flawed format with limitations that can not ever be solved. According to him he used a format identical to today's DSD 256 already in the 1990s but later abandoned it because of its too many limitations. Personally I am only interested in maximum transparency to the source. I am not interested in dac solutions that possibly only sound as good the best of vinyl. I already have a good LP player. I want dacs that sound clearly better and closer to real live acoustic music than even the very best of vinyl!
  13. Hello Chris, I don't at all doubt that it is possibly in many ways one of the best dacs that money can buy. It'd better be, at that price! But to me the absolutely MOST interesting paragraph in your review was where you mentioned how it handled the extremely densely scored passages in Britten's Passacaglia from the Reference Recordings album. To me it indicates two things. You obviously have a very resolving system and you know where a link fails to deliver the whole truth. As someone who listens almost exclusively not only to acoustic music, but also LARGE SCALE symphonic like Britten, Stravinsky and Bartok to mention a couple of composers whose music is good material to "sort the wheat from the chaff", I have to conclude that this dac was possibly designed to sound euphonic? much like vinyl and analogue tape do? But not necessarily as live music ACTUALLY sounds? But for me the ONLY REFERENCE POINT there can be in REAL HI FI terms, is HOW CLOSE any link in a reproduction chain dac or whatever else can reproduce acoustic music to how it sounds LIVE in a real hall. And with the example you mention to you there are already other dacs that sort out very complex symphonic music better than this dac does with this particular recording. If I am not wrong that Reference Recording is a PCM recording recorded at 176.4 with the Pacific Microsonics chip used by Mr Jonsson for many of his recordings which would have had to be converted to DSD by this Dac. Some more recent recordings from the same label have been made at DSD 256. Do you have any of those as well to compare with other dacs? You also say that it's been like driving a Ferrari. Have you also driven a Chord DAVE with a Chord Hugo M Scaler yet? I suspect that with this particular recording and possibly others of the same complexity and dynamic range it might be an even smoother and possibly more REALISTIC drive than the dac you have just reviewed. Nota bene,I am not saying this as a fact. I am only guessing from actually hearing the DAVE/HMS and using the HMS with a Qutest dac since three months on a daily basis. I have yet to audition the dac you reviewed. And the DAVE/HMS would play the native 176.4 pcm file not a conversion of it. On the other hand the DAVE/HMS and TT2/HMS would do the opposite with a native DSD file. I would not rule out the possiblity that the "Ferrari dac" is one of the best DSD dacs around. But I guess DAVE/HMS would sound more realistic and closer to the real thing with NATIVE PCM material. If you haven't yet heard either the TT2/HMS or DAVE /HMS yet do try to do so while you still have the dac under discussion in your home. I would be very interested to hear your take on such a comparison with the MOST demanding material you have. Cheers Christer
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