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sdolezalek

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About sdolezalek

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    Bay Area, CA

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  1. Rajiv: I'm glad to see that you are giving HQ Player a further look. 😉 But from prior threads, I thought that the Chord DACs, Dave included, played better with upsampled PCM files rather than DSD, or perhaps put differently, that there were other DACs that benefitted more from DSD256 and DSD512 inputs than did those from Rob watts and Chord. According to Rob: the PCM format does have more timing problems than DSD, which in turn has to cope with high levels of noise beyond the usable signal frequency range. But if you manage to deal with the timing problems of PCM in the D/A converter, like
  2. If you are using actively powered speakers are you certain that whatever you feed them post DAC isn't just being run through another internal DAC in the speaker that may make irrelevant everything that comes before them?
  3. Having just added the Modius to my headphone system I agree on the value provided by Schiit on these pieces! Overall I still prefer the more nuanced use of DSD 512 through HQ Player and a Dellta Sigma DAC in my main system, but I wasn't going to match that at Modius pricing for my desktop system.
  4. Given how much colorful language and little though goes into many reviews, I much prefer mine with time, care and thought put into them. That is what both @austinpop and @ray-dude consistently put into theirs. That doesn't make them per se right, but I can far more easily see how they came to their conclusions, what other equipment they tested, what their thought process was, what music they listened to, than virtually any other audio reviews I see. I may then choose to agree or disagree, but I come away much better informed than I was before reading the review. I also don't ag
  5. As depressing as that sounds, you may not be that far off. On the other hand, the more dependent we become on streaming as our only source of entertainment, the more likely people will find a way to make us pay for it. Just not clear who will keep those profits...
  6. As OP, might I request that we focus this discussion away from "affordability," "extravagance" or other aspects of money or value? What has been great to hear in the discussion is that even in these tough times people like to dream and be aspirational and that reviews of extreme products (particularly those with later trickle-down possibilities) are actually a positive distraction rather than a downer for those that might not be able to afford them. So, I'd rather hear more about what people's audio systems mean to them in these times and how you are balancing a) working from hom
  7. Rajiv: The thoughtfulness, detail and lack of seeming bias you give to your reviews most certainly bring value and joy. Between your work, that of @raydude, @mitchco and of course Chris himself, there is no question that AS has raised the bar on reviews. More importantly though, what has come through loud and clear to me, in both your response and @raydude's response to my question, is the journey, the "hard won gains," the "exquisite appreciation" and ultimately the human being behind that work. I feel absolutely no guilt in continuing to strive for excellence in the middle o
  8. Ray: Thank you for the Mary Oliver piece -- very fitting in these times. The particular line that stuck out to me was: "Still, life has some possibility left." Perhaps that is also what Chris was getting at in terms of not wanting to be a downer in these times. Those glimpses of a better future; of goodness we have not yet experienced, are an important part of what keeps us going in these times. I must now go back and re-read your review with that frame of mind. 😉 Thanks
  9. Thanks Chris. I wasn't looking for agreement as much as I was looking to explore my own surprise at the changed emotions I was having in reading some of these great reviews now, as compared to even a month ago. I'm not sure that I was even looking for a ValueWeek publication as much as maybe looking for a "big surprise in a little package." Much of what we discuss here is what I would refer to as an "all-out-assault-on-the-state-of-the-art" and by having these discussions I believe that Audiophile Style has contributed to meaningfully improving the state of our art. To use an imperfect
  10. Thanks lving! You have correctly captured the spirit of my question. More specifically when I started reading some of Rajiv's (austinpop's) wonderfully detailed reviews and looking at how carefully he has assembled and upgraded his system over time, it really fueled my ambition to do the same with my system. I'm fortunate enough to have the resources to do that, so he was clearly stoking my dreams... But, yesterday, when I was reading the latest installment of raydude's equally detailed and mouthwatering reviews, I suddenly realized that something didn't feel right. That if I went out
  11. Although I immensely appreciate the amount of thought and work that ray-dude and austinpop put into their all of their exquisite reviews, I have to admit to an odd feeling after reading this week's installment after seeing the title "Extreme Week." On the one hand I can't help lusting for the quality of sound that the equipment they are reviewing can deliver, but on the other hand I would today feel very guilty spending to buy that equipment in the face of what is going on in the world around us. In a WFH time, the ability to escape for a few minutes or hours and just listen to some great mu
  12. I have the exact same setup and found that when I connected the Desktop to the NAA via IPv6 I got less interference/stutter than I did using IPv4. As to why that would be the case, the rest of this discussion is mostly over my head... 😉
  13. I'm somewhat reluctant to test this example, but what about the work done by the father/son team of George and Giles Martin on the Beatles Love album? I'm in no way trying to suggest that the Beatles are a bad artist these two have made good, but Love is clearly an album that is a mashup produced in the mixing studio and, as such, struck me as an interesting example of the engineer acting as the artist and producing a very listenable result.
  14. Chris: You are correct that I started with the assumption that it can never get better than the artist. The legitimate question is whether a great recording engineer can make a bad artist sound good. It sounds as though you are suggesting that just as much "magic" can happen behind the glass in the studio as in front of it. I also know that we are seeing re-mixes of old recordings that sound better than the prior releases, but are those "less-bad" or "better-than" the original? Having grown up in a household full of musicians, I'll still take the real thing standing/sitting next to me
  15. Updated version to account for Tom & Kal's feedback 😉
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