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The Computer Audiophile

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  1. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to jhulton in (Teddy Pardo TeddyNUC) Reviews   
    As someone that has a great deal of money invested in my HiFi , I am careful about adding components. When I recently added a Roon Nucleus I began looking for an great LPS to power it. While there are several brands available (many of which are now sold out!), I was searching for something with impeccable build quality and great sound. After extensive research, I happened upon TeddyPardo.com. Google other reviews. I don't think you will find a critical word out there.
    I am delighted to say that not only did I "take the plunge" to buy a unit from them but was overwhelmed by how fast it got here, the overall sound quality it offers and above all, the superb customer service I received. I had an issue with the power cable and Yair jumped right on the problem and made it right. 
    What more can one ask? A great product, btw a GREAT price, superb customer service! Don't hesitate to try one of the power supplies. There is not need to look elsewhere believe me.
    Jeff Hulton
  2. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to Elashri in (Teddy Pardo TeddyNUC) Reviews   
    Im using the TeddyNUC on my Intel nuc Running ROON Rock, and the Teddy Power Supply improved the details and clarity and now I get a better sense of "being there".
    Cant recommend it enough. 
  3. Like
    The Computer Audiophile got a reaction from Marcin_gps in JCAT NET Card XE Reviews   
    I've been using the XE for months. Great product. Very high quality. 
  4. Upvote
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to zerung in AURALiC ARIES G2.1 Reviews   
    If you are sick of the CAS development, the constant changes to your equipment; the additional clock, the new linear power supply from a coal burning plant, the other plethora of tweaks.....take a break and buy a Aries G2.1.
    Its stable, seems to have no impact of external clocks or digital filtering (Sending signal from AG2.1 to external DD unit like Denafrips Gaia) - implying the sound out is as good as it gets.
    Better then UltraRendu with super clocks, & boutique LPS.
    Can be controlled via Roon with core in your computer and seems to sound very good too.
    Can be controlled via any app on your phone or ipad.

    Add and additional HD and you and burn all your music to this drive.
    Add a compatible CD drive and you can burn your CDS to this.
    Connect your tidal or Qobus. All sounds good.
    Finally sounds better than a souped up Mac mini with the works, external DD units, etc.
  5. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to Patatorz in UpTone Audio EtherREGEN Reviews   
    A small review (sorry in french) here.
    Really appreciate the EtherRegen at home especially after the addition of a Paul Pang 10MHz Référence clock and now a Cybershaft OP21.
  6. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to bobfa in Auralic ALTAIR G1 Reviews   
    I have been using the Altair G1 as my primary Streamer/Server/Endpoint + DAC for six months.  The G1 is extremely flexible.  The Lightning DS application for iOS is very nice to use.   This is one of the first devices that I want front and center on the system.  It has deserves its place on top of my Victrola.  
    I have been using my Roon Server along with Lightning DS so that I can control others devices using the same control point software.  There is a bit of a toss-up there.  With LightningDS you may not even want Roon.
    Note that you can add storage inside of the Altair G1 to make it truly stand alone.  
    I have also used the headphone output of the Altair G1 with good results.  Just make sure to turn off other outputs when you are listening to headphones as they operate in parallel.
    I have not fully explored the ability to RIP CDs, but it does work!  The only problem I have had is to try to pair a couple of different IR remotes.  There are a couple of blemishes there. 
    The AURALiC team seems to be keeping up with software and feature updates.  They have a nice discussion forum.  
  7. Like
    The Computer Audiophile got a reaction from manzano804 in RAAL-requisite SR1a Reviews   
    There's nothing like these headphones in the world today. Easily the best I've ever heard. Here's my full review. 
  8. Like
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to Sherwood in RAAL-requisite SR1a Reviews   
    One of the virtues of headphones, I'm often told, is that you can easily change one pair out for another for a different sound. Many enthusiasts have preferred headphones for different musical genres, or even different artists. At the low end of the price spectrum, that's a sensible viewpoint. No inexpensive headphone has it all, but some can do some things very well. That needn't be true of all headphones, though, and invariably the models that stand the test of time do so because they refuse to compromise on sound quality. That is where the Raal/Requisite SR1A shines.

    I don't want to give anything up in order to get great bass, holographic voices, huge soundstage, or tonal accuracy. The entire purpose of critical listening is to get as close as possible to the sound in the control room when the mastering engineer steps away from the console. For almost a decade I've relied on the Sennheiser HD800, Stax SR-009, and Focal Utopia to get as close as I could to the sound on the recording, warts and all. I've owned most of their competition, from Audeze LCD4 up to Abyss TC, and not found much that could better those three for accuracy. I love them, and long felt they were end game for me. No longer. Put simply, I don't see myself returning to any of them if I could listen to the Raal instead. There is nothing any of those headphones do this one does not do better.

    Years ago I owned and loved AKG's venerable K1000, but I was always frustrated by the tradeoff between sound stage and bass quantity. The SR1a, while superficially similar, makes a tremendous leap in sound quality by simply including a small pad running along the entire height of the driver and conforming to your face while listening. This pad helps stabilize the headphone when moving your head around, sure, but it serves a more important function. By essentially coupling the driver to your head it dramatically increases the apparent baffle size for the driver, providing you excellent bass that falls off far less when opening the "wings" of the headphone wider. The Jotunheim R amp also includes a "baffle compensation" switch, essentially a bass boost, for use when the drivers are extended further away from the face. This is a nice feature but I'd rather do it in software, where possible.

    The the subjective part, how do they sound, how do they feel, how do they look? They sound unbelievable. An evolutionary leap from anything else I've heard. Obviously you're still playing the same music, but these headphones have an uncanny ability to put each song in its own world. By imparting so very little of their own character, they let each album and track speak for itself, just as it was recorded to do. Each voice and instrument is detailed beyond any other reference point I could name. Listening to headphones is always a very out-of-body experience, with voices appearing as if inside your mind rather than on a conventional "soundstage", but the SR1a brings you several steps closer. Live recordings have identiable height and depth, and studio recordings are immersive in the same kind of way binaural recordings are, with you turning your head at every noise and doubting whether that barking dog is in the song or across the street. It is a near-perfect facsimile of real life, and closer than any other headphone ever made.

    As to feel, it's stellar. They're extremely finnicky to adjust, and I would not be surprised if an eventual V2 of these headphones dispenses with the "handmade belt" height adjustment method they currently rely on, but the frame is extremely light for how bulletproof it feels and the materials are extremely luxurious. Everything that touches your head is beautifully finished leather, and the rest of it is either flawless stainless steel, aluminum, or striking carbon fiber. The only plastic on the headphone itself is the open-cell foam inside the leather head pads, and it's the perfect tool for that job.

    The look is frankly ridiculous, and to anyone else in the room with you they sound as loud as a speakerphone conversation, but you're not wearing these things on the train.

    Raal has been a going concern manufacturing ribbon drivers and loudspeakers since 1995, and I'm confident this will only grow their acclaim. If you have any concerns about buying from a small manufacturer, don't. The Sr1a are bulletproof, you can buy any needed replacement parts directly from the (very responsive) company, and they sound so much better than their competition it's silly. This is the top of the mountain.
  9. Like
    The Computer Audiophile got a reaction from RickyV in RAAL-requisite SR1a Reviews   
    There's nothing like these headphones in the world today. Easily the best I've ever heard. Here's my full review. 
  10. Upvote
    The Computer Audiophile got a reaction from hltf in Berkeley Audio Design Alpha DAC Series 2 Reviews   
    I used this DAC extensively before the Reference Series came out from Berkeley. It's a fantastic DAC and remains one of my favorites to this day. Much of the magic of the Alpha DAC is from the know-how of Pflash Pflaumer, rather than from using the most expensive parts inside the unit. If one is willing to use an external source that can send AES into the Alpha DAC, I highly recommend this product.  
  11. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to charlesphoto in iFi Audio AC iPurifier Reviews   
    Thanks to the reviewer above I finally took a stab at one of these. First one went in the server closet which runs off of my office circuit that has a lot of computer etc devices on it. Immediate and noticeable effect. Less glare in the treble in particular. Second one went on the same power strip, separating the power supplies and the network devices, third one went on the dedicated line that powers the opticalrendu via the Sonore Power Supply. Fourth one coming is going on the office system which runs off a different lighting circuit. Tested with the third and improvement noted. 
    If you can't/don't want to afford a four figure power strip/conditioner, these are amazing bang for the buck. No warm up or "stabilization" needed, they also supply surge protection without affecting the dynamics or prat of the sound. Best is one can sprinkle them about and go additive for a cumulative effect (I would assume three on a very noisy circuit is about peak). I think what these do one could keep chasing with more and more expensive cables, power supplies, etc. but be stumped by glare and artifacts until throwing in some power conditioning, and these are a great flexible and inexpensive way to do so. 
  12. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to wdw in Wilson Audio TuneTot Reviews   
    We moved from a single family dwelling which had a dedicated sound room, monoblocks and Magico Q3’s, which we were completely in love with...likely stretched the drywall a few times listening long and, on occasion, loudly.
    Recently moved to a concrete tower Condo so were concerned about neighbours pounding on the door late at night so bought a DCS Bartok and, after one false start, a Pass Labs 30W Class A to drive our final choice (after a wonderful interlude with the Maggie LRS), the Tune Tots.
    So this is a different listening environment but any music lover wanting/needing to drive down the scale/volume but not lose the lovely nuance of well produced music, these are your end speaker.  The silk dome tweeter is so sweet and seductive and this relatively tiny mass of a speaker can do the work, provide the musical goods exceeding what we expect to be it’s limits.  Certainly made these diehard Magico hearts just fall in love with these Wilson’s
  13. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to davide256 in Chord Electronics MOJO Reviews   
    I'm quite impressed with the Chord Mojo. I originally purchased it because I wanted a better portable headphone amp to  use at work with iPhone and Audeze Sine headphones.
    This works quite well with Qobuz, lots of meaty tone color, good dynamics, percussive transient details, a level of performance that doesn't fatigue/disinterest over 7-8 hours
    of constant use. But what really pleased me was its performance in my home system. Its displaced  a Schiit multibit Gungnir because it has better linearity at the top and low end of the spectrum; goes deeper  on bass and has the sheen on cymbals that was missing. The internal battery can be disconnected allowing you to use an external power supply,  and I find
    that powering it with an LPS 1.2 improves things further. At some point I'll take a next step in the Chord line but for now the adage "if it's not broke, don't fix it" applies. The only
    negative for home system use is the mini connectors, right now I'm having to use Audioquest adaptors for the Lush 2 USB and Kimber Hero RCA interconnects. 
  14. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to Oliver H in JCAT OPTIMO 3 DUO Reviews   
    I bought the Optimo power supply on the basis of what it appeared to promise: an improvement on what I was already using to power my JCAT XE USB card. What I was using was a W4S PS-1, with a Kimber DC lead. That sounded pretty good in the audio-only SSD-driven computer that I have been using and improving for over 3 years now. I am using Audiophile Optimizer on it, with Windows 10 Pro, a Pachanko Pure Reference SATA lead to a Samsung SSD, among other things (including Ghentaudio DC leads internally and to the HDPlex 200w linear power supply that is powering an HDPlex 400w DC-ATX). I am not streaming via that computer: that is done via another one, in which I have a JCAT Femto USB card and a JCAT network card. When I put the Optimo DC lead into the XE card input, the sound was immediately much closer to what I wanted from a digital source. I always check changes to the computer/digital source chain by comparing the sound of a recording which I have in both digital and vinyl form: I have a Nottingham Analogue Ace Spacedeck with an Origin Live Illustrious Mark 2 arm, with an Audio Technica AT-OC9iii cartridge, played via the balanced output from an Origin Live phono stage. The SSD-driven computer sound is now such that it is at least comparable to that of a very good vinyl pressing of an analogue recording, played on my system. I like the sound from the computer with the XE card now so much that I am not going to remove the Optimo input for comparison purposes. It would be a waste of time. 
    I have a Yamaha CD-S3000, and the sound from the XLR socket output is both lower in volume and more soft than from the phono socket output. That is unusual, since the balanced output is often higher than the single-ended output. I mention the difference because the sound when playing a CD or SACD on the Yamaha is often more mellow when using the XLR socket, and generally I prefer the more mellow sound when playing a CD, especially when it consists of a digital version of an analogue recording. I have also in the past preferred (to my great annoyance, as I have wanted my computer sound to be better) the sound of a CD played through the Yamaha as compared with the digital replay (fed into either a Chord DAC64 or an MHDT NOS DAC) of the CD ripped to iTunes and played back on the SSD computer system. (Incidentally, I have had a Chord DAVE in my system for several weeks and compared it with the DAC64, and to my ears the DAC64 on the second filter, so the most filtered, output, is more musical than the DAVE.) Now, with all of the things that are in place in the chain, the computer sound is, finally, to my ears, preferable to that of the Yamaha playing a CD. I have no doubt that the Optimo contributes significantly to that result. It is in my view worth having for that reason alone. Yet it has a second output, and it is contributing significantly also to the good quality of my streaming output sound (which, it has to be said, while good is still not as good as the sound of the SSD-driven computer output, which is full and rich, while yet being crisp and clear). So, the Optimo, while expensive, is overall in my view a good buy.
  15. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to PGAUDIO in Innuos PhoenixUSB Reclocker Reviews   
    I had Ifi micro iUSB 3.0 for two years
    and it is very good
    But the Phoenix is exceptional !
    Its a great upgrade to my Hugo TT2
    and Mscaler !  

  16. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to Temporal_Dissident in ELAC NAVIS ARB-51 Reviews   
    LOVE these. Currently setup in office with an ELAC DDP-2 DAC streamer. Replaced a pair of B&W 705’s powered by a Peachtree Nova 300.
    These NAVIS’s sound beautiful, and like all ELAC they have excellent build quality, very practical features, and no fluff. Haven’t tested the direct streaming (no need). Small, but heavy. 
  17. Thanks
  18. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to Dynobot in Roon Reviews   
    I've used and owned Roon for several years. Having gone back and forth to many different Audio Software I came back to Roon only because of two things: tight integration with Qobuz and its more reliable than all the other 'beta' software available...ie MoOde, Volumio and the usual suspects.
    Sound wise its no better than any other software available, in fact in my subjective opinion its a notch lower than MoOde and maybe two notches below RuneAudio in terms of sound quality only.
    I terms of eye-candy [waf] and reliability its way ahead of all others....so Roon it is.
    My rating is on its average sound quality. Other things that lower the rating are the grey-hash squares it uses when it can not find an Artist image. These squares are not modifiable so even if you have the pic, it can not be overwritten. As seen in the review below by lucretius.
  19. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to austinpop in Phasure Blaxius^2 Digital BNC Cable (Pair) Reviews   
    I compared the Blaxius^2 cables relative to the stock Chord BNC cables between the M-Scaler and DAVE. Compared to the stock cables, the Blaxius^2 cables make a large improvement:
    spacious soundstage very clean, incisive transients no harshness  
    Compared to similarly priced WAVE STONE Premium, the Phasure Blaxius^2 has more air, and of course is highly customizable. The STONE has more density and solidity. Both have a neutral tonality, and are excellent cables at this price.
    Respond to this review  
  20. Like
    The Computer Audiophile got a reaction from HiFiHarbard in Wilson Audio Alexia Series 2 Reviews   
    The Alexia Series 2 are my new reference loudspeakers. I sold my TAD CR1 speakers after 7 years to upgrade to these from Wilson. Once installed and setup by a representative form the Wilson factory, I've never looked back or regretted my choice. I considered the Alexia Series 2, Focal Maestro Utopia, and Rockport Cygnus speakers when making this purchase. 
    I was nervous to switch to a silk come tweeter from the beryllium based CR1, but I'm very happy with the sound I'm getting. It's incredibly natural. None of the drivers call attention to themselves like a beryllium drive can once in a while. 
    The build quality is amazing as well. I can't recommend these enough.
  21. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to clipper in Sennheiser HD 800 S Reviews   
    Absolutely love these headphones.  They are my favorites of all the ones I've ever owned. 
    Comfortable to wear, revealing, fast, great imaging.
    Sometimes they get a bad rap for being a tad bright, but I have found this not to be the case when used with a quality source and quality amplification.
    Use them balanced, if you can.
    Pairs really well with Violectric V281 amp.  
  22. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to Phil C in ELAC UNI-FI UB5 Reviews   
    I own a pair. Designed by the great Andrew Jones, need I say more? Off the charts price to performance value. These are not budget speakers, they just have a budget price and deserve to be driven by quality electronics. Very musical with clear high notes and deeper bass than you would expect for their size and 5.25 inch driver. They rock out with rock and pop music. Particularly impressed with their reproduction of piano and guitar too. Somewhat power hungry, so mate with a quality amp of 80 wpc or more at 8 ohms for these speakers to reach their full potential. Use an amp that costs more than the speakers? In this case yes...you will be rewarded with superior sound. Some suggest that the Schitt Vidar amp ($799) is a good and economical match.  Cheers, Phil C
  23. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to MetalNuts in dCS Rossini DAC Reviews   
    I have Rossini Dac before I changed to MSB Premier.  It is a very good and musical Dac and has the network input which I always prefer. The sound is more analog than many DACs I have used before.  The only feature or design I do not like is the clock which requires separate input of 44.1kHz and 48kHz.  There is not much choice of external clock without manually changing the frequency according to the sample rate of the file to be played and leaving its Rossini clock  to be the only alternative. 
    If one do not insist on Ethernet input and ladder dac, you may have a lot of choice well below the price range of Rossini Dac.
  24. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to MetalNuts in KEF LS50 Reviews   
    I use LS50 as the surround in my AV system save and except a few days when I sold my Magico S1 MK 2 and I cannot expect more from such a compact speaker.  It has reasonable treble, mid and bass and do not under estimate its capability and in particular in small room. 
  25. Thanks
    The Computer Audiophile reacted to sfseay in Aurender ACS10 Reviews   
    I have owned the Aurender ACS10 for over a month. The unit has ripped over 300 CDs without issue, sounds great connected by USB to my dCS Debussy DAC, and acrs as a server for my audio room and my network connected NAD M10.
    A pricey bit of hardware, but coupled with an excellent application, 16TB of storage (8TB in RAID), CD ripping, streaming, and excellent sound this device will surely please any audiophile.
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