The Chronicals

Deleted Due To Monumental Bellends

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12 hours ago, eddie-baby said:

Yeah it shares the same chip, doesn't mean they'll sound the same though but if you ask me the Creative sounds excellent for its price its a gift / steal even! The Marantz DAC has interested me but I'm pretty happy with everything I have for the moment, and I can't see it bettering the Naim anyway, different yes I'm sure but not better. Maybe one day I might find a use for it though or second hand you never know, it looks a great unit and I do like Marantz's better offerings.

 

Ah cool, I might source one out just to do my own little comparison. I really love the Marantz, they seem to have this ability to derive smoothness out of everything, but as we know its all about the implementation that creates the sound. The Marantz also weighs like a small tank - I find it amazing how all of that hardware can go into something, but then compared to say an Audionote that weights less than half a bag of sugar and also sounds great -what does it mean!

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1 hour ago, The Chronicals said:

I think those using a Phiips 1541 chips, and there are many, many....would disagree with you. I guess Audionote and Lampizator get it wrong as well? Ah well , better tell them to shut up shop lol.

To be honest, it sounds like you're not a musician, or spent years recorded, playing live etc as claiming the more high fidelity something is is more realistic and natural is actually the complete opposite of how music actually sounds, so 'natural' is almost the opposite of hi-fi which is why NOS DACs do so well amongst those wanting a 'real' sound as opposed to a computer engineered sound. Theres nothing wrong with the latter, its merely personal preference, and this review was merely intended to give insight into a product that I bought blind to allow others for years to come to read and make informed decision before spending a huge chunk of hard earned without being able to hear it first. It's a community based approached, and one , after reading others personal reviews about products not skewed by industry politics and backhanders, that I value immensely. Sorry if you feel the time I invested into writing an information community review like its an informercial, I'll ensure I check with you first before i decide to sell something I have reviewed previously before selling it at a hugeley discounted price.  Thankfully the 00's of emails I get thanking me for taking the time to review it thoroughly outweighs your negativity :)

I personally feel oversampling became the norm because digital playback is flawed, so 'they' over process to hide the actual flaws., there is nothing more real about that than Pamela Andersons chest. Its the same way Apple can get actually quite good sound out of tiny laptops, its a processed 'fake' sound that hits certain senses to make your 'feel' like something is good. There is no right and wrong to any of it, its pure personal preference beause thats what music choice is, preference.  Im currently using an internal OS DAC to reduce costs so i could invest in amplification but the MHDT is a cracking little unit (oh that you can also oversample through the likes of Audirvana etc with good results) and one I would keep for sure if I had the money.

Vinyl has as you say 'technical evidence' to show it is flawed also, but it sounds fantastic to many, so for those wanting to recreate a vinyl sound, buffered NOS DACs imo get closer to that without huge other system changes, and that is for those that want that sound is for, definitely not for a 'measurist' which is why I made reference to this in third paragraph to save those of that ilk getting too involved in something that won't suit them and to save life hours in a debate, much like cables, that has no definitive 'right' outcome, just a load of  endless waffle (from both sides!)

That's audio for you: some people like euphonic distortion others don't. Progress is made by those engineers that strive for accuracy, or we'd still be listening to mono over a gramophone...

My first CD player had the 1541 chip. That was ages ago, before smartphones and personal computers...

Edited by tuga

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12 minutes ago, tuga said:

That's audio for you: some people like euphonic distortion others don't. Progress is made by those engineers that strive for accuracy, or we'd still be listening to mono over a gramophone...

My first CD player had the 1541 chip. That was ages ago, before smartphones and personal computers...

Yet, to some that progress can sound ghastly, which merely reinterates my point.

Thanks for your interest in the MHDT Orchid.

Edited by The Chronicals

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32 minutes ago, The Chronicals said:

Yet, to some that progress can sound ghastly, which merely reinterates my point.

Thanks for your interest in the MHDT Orchid.

I don't have anything against you liking the MHDT, but I don't think that it is a very high-fidelity equipment and my opinion may help put your glowing "review" into perspective.

.

Also I think it's a mistake to blame on newer, more effective/accurate, technologies for what you call "ghastly" sound.

In my view there are two factors at play: one is personal taste (some may just prefer VHS viewed on a curved-screen CRT display) and the other is "poor" implementation/design.

This quote of a comment by Charles Hansen of Ayre illustrates my point quite nicely:

The thing that I see over and over and over in this thread is an irrational belief in the importance of the DAC chip itself. Just about everything affect the sound of an audio product, but when it comes to DACs, I would rank (in order or sonic importance the general categories as follows:
 
1) The analog circuitry - 99.9% of all DACs are designed by digital engineers who don't know enough about analog. They just follow the app note. The specs on the op-amps are fabulous and digital engineers are inherently seduced by the beauty of the math story. There are minor differences in the sound quality between various op-amps, but it's kind of like the difference between a Duncan-Heinz cake mix and a Betty Crocker cake mix. 99.8% of the op-amps are used a current-to-voltage converters with the inverting input operating as a virtual ground. This is probably the worst way to use an op-amp as the input signal will cause the internal circuitry to go into slewing-limited distortion. http://www.edn.com/electronics-blogs/anablog/4311648/Op-amp-myths-ndash-by-Barrie-Gilbert
 
With discrete circuitry, the only limit is your imagination. You are free to adjust the topology of the circuit, the brands of the parts, the active devices, the bias current in each stage - anything you can think of. Think of this as going to a world-class patisserie in Paris and seeing all the different things that can be made.
 
2) The power supplies - 99.9% of all DACs use "3-pin" power supply regulators, which are pretty much op-amps connected to a series pass transistor. Everything in #1 applies here.
 
3) The master clock - jitter is a single number assigned to measure the phase noise of an oscillator over a fixed bandwidth. It is far more i important to know the spectral distribution of the timing variations and how they correlate to audible problems. 99.9% of all DACs use a strip-cut AT crystal in a Pierce gate oscillator circuit. It's pretty good for the money but the results will depend heavily on the implementation, particularly in the PCB layout and the power supplies (#2).
 
It's hard to rank the rest of these so I will give them a tie score.
 
4) The digital filter - 99.9% of all DACs use the digital filter built into the DAC chip. About a dozen companies know how to make a custom digital filter based on either FPGAs or DSP chips.
 
4) PCB layout - grounding and shielding, impedance-controlled traces, return currents, and return current paths are all critical. For a complex digital PCB, 8 layers is the minimum for good results.
 
4) The DAC chip - almost everything these days is delta sigma with a built-in digital filter. Differences between different chips is one of the less important aspects of D/A converter designs. Both ESS and AKM have some special tricks to reduce out-of-band noise, which can be helpful, but not dramatic.
 
4) Passive parts - the quality of these can make a large difference in overall performance, especially for analog. Not many digital engineers sit around listening to different brands of resistors to see what sounds best.
 
These are just a few of the things that make differences in the way that a DAC will sound.

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Super Dealer
I don't think you have?  But definitely, I'm game, although it won't be possible for a while, if its the MHDT is still for sale in the new year, definitely give them a little Dac-off!
Hi, I pm'd you on AOS. Happy to do it whenever you're ready!

Sent from my ONEPLUS A5000 using Tapatalk

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17 minutes ago, tuga said:

I don't have anything against you liking the MHDT, but I don't think that it is a very high-fidelity equipment and my opinion may help put your glowing "review" into perspective.

.

Also I think it's a mistake to blame on newer, more effective/accurate, technologies for what you call "ghastly" sound.

In my view there are two factors at play: one is personal taste (some may just prefer VHS viewed on a curved-screen CRT display) and the other is "poor" implementation/design.

Entitled to your opinion, but no need to thread crap a review that has been made for the community, its a review sheerly to give others an insight into how the product I purchased sounds in the real world. 

Your opinion actually does nothing to my perspective other than for me to thank myself for listening to music, and making music, with my ears, heart and soul :). But for your perspective, learn to play an instrument, get involved with a band, it will give you a broader depth of knowledge about all things musical and not just sound reproduction. Interestingly I've listened to systems setup solely on measurements, there was one at the Hifshow show, and it sounded so terrible, my ears bled. I was later told the exhibitioner was a member on here. But that person, and others probably loves his system, so horses for courses, this type of DAC does not interest you, yet it does others.

dinging-clipart-guitar-clipart.jpg

Thanks for your interest in the MHDT Orchid, a great sounding NOS Hifi DAC.

Edited by The Chronicals

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6 minutes ago, Juancho said:

Hi, I pm'd you on AOS. Happy to do it whenever you're ready!

Sent from my ONEPLUS A5000 using Tapatalk
 

Nope, nothing on AOS, but sure thing, deffo! 

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1 hour ago, The Chronicals said:

Entitled to your opinion, but no need to thread crap a review that has been made for the community, its a review sheerly to give others an insight into how the product I purchased sounds in the real world. 

Your opinion actually does nothing to my perspective other than for me to thank myself for listening to music, and making music, with my ears, heart and soul :). But for your perspective, learn to play an instrument, get involved with a band, it will give you a broader depth of knowledge about all things musical and not just sound reproduction. Interestingly I've listened to systems setup solely on measurements, there was one at the Hifshow show, and it sounded so terrible, my ears bled. I was later told the exhibitioner was a member on here. But that person, and others probably loves his system, so horses for courses, this type of DAC does not interest you, yet it does others.

Thanks for your interest in the MHDT Orchid, a great sounding NOS Hifi DAC.

It is me who has to thank you for allowing me to express my views. It is most kind of you in this day and age...

I don't play an instrument. But I sing in a classical music amateur choir. And I listen to classical music lunchtime recitals at a local church on a weekly basis. And my youngest sings in the school choir and plays percussion in the school orchestra and is learning to play the acoustic guitar, and his brother is learning to play the piano. I don't listen to amplified  as much but I did go to the 606 Club last summer and even listened to James (wearing earplugs).Your presumption is thus misplaced...

As previously mentioned I have no intention of changing your opinion, just adding a different one to the discussion. After all this is a discussion forum, not a blog.

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2 hours ago, tuga said:

I don't have anything against you liking the MHDT, but I don't think that it is a very high-fidelity equipment and my opinion may help put your glowing "review" into perspective.

.

Also I think it's a mistake to blame on newer, more effective/accurate, technologies for what you call "ghastly" sound.

In my view there are two factors at play: one is personal taste (some may just prefer VHS viewed on a curved-screen CRT display) and the other is "poor" implementation/design.

This quote of a comment by Charles Hansen of Ayre illustrates my point quite nicely:

The thing that I see over and over and over in this thread is an irrational belief in the importance of the DAC chip itself. Just about everything affect the sound of an audio product, but when it comes to DACs, I would rank (in order or sonic importance the general categories as follows:
 
1) The analog circuitry - 99.9% of all DACs are designed by digital engineers who don't know enough about analog. They just follow the app note. The specs on the op-amps are fabulous and digital engineers are inherently seduced by the beauty of the math story. There are minor differences in the sound quality between various op-amps, but it's kind of like the difference between a Duncan-Heinz cake mix and a Betty Crocker cake mix. 99.8% of the op-amps are used a current-to-voltage converters with the inverting input operating as a virtual ground. This is probably the worst way to use an op-amp as the input signal will cause the internal circuitry to go into slewing-limited distortion. http://www.edn.com/electronics-blogs/anablog/4311648/Op-amp-myths-ndash-by-Barrie-Gilbert
 
With discrete circuitry, the only limit is your imagination. You are free to adjust the topology of the circuit, the brands of the parts, the active devices, the bias current in each stage - anything you can think of. Think of this as going to a world-class patisserie in Paris and seeing all the different things that can be made.
 
2) The power supplies - 99.9% of all DACs use "3-pin" power supply regulators, which are pretty much op-amps connected to a series pass transistor. Everything in #1 applies here.
 
3) The master clock - jitter is a single number assigned to measure the phase noise of an oscillator over a fixed bandwidth. It is far more i important to know the spectral distribution of the timing variations and how they correlate to audible problems. 99.9% of all DACs use a strip-cut AT crystal in a Pierce gate oscillator circuit. It's pretty good for the money but the results will depend heavily on the implementation, particularly in the PCB layout and the power supplies (#2).
 
It's hard to rank the rest of these so I will give them a tie score.
 
4) The digital filter - 99.9% of all DACs use the digital filter built into the DAC chip. About a dozen companies know how to make a custom digital filter based on either FPGAs or DSP chips.
 
4) PCB layout - grounding and shielding, impedance-controlled traces, return currents, and return current paths are all critical. For a complex digital PCB, 8 layers is the minimum for good results.
 
4) The DAC chip - almost everything these days is delta sigma with a built-in digital filter. Differences between different chips is one of the less important aspects of D/A converter designs. Both ESS and AKM have some special tricks to reduce out-of-band noise, which can be helpful, but not dramatic.
 
4) Passive parts - the quality of these can make a large difference in overall performance, especially for analog. Not many digital engineers sit around listening to different brands of resistors to see what sounds best.
 
These are just a few of the things that make differences in the way that a DAC will sound.

I agree with pretty well everything said above which is why the latest version of my DAC uses seven discrete power supplies using the latest super regulators and including a choke power supply for the valve output stage. It also reclocks all data, using state of the art NDK clocks. 

I also regularly go to live music events. Along with NOS sounding natural to my ears, I found it was the pre ringing in digital filters that offended my ears and DACs with minimal or no pre ringing always sounded better to me.

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39 minutes ago, tuga said:

It is me who has to thank you for allowing me to express my views. It is most kind of you in this day and age...

I don't play an instrument. But I sing in a classical music amateur choir. And I listen to classical music lunchtime recitals at a local church on a weekly basis. And my youngest sings in the school choir and plays percussion in the school orchestra and is learning to play the acoustic guitar, and his brother is learning to play the piano. I don't listen to amplified  as much but I did go to the 606 Club last summer and even listened to James (wearing earplugs).Your presumption is thus misplaced...

As previously mentioned I have no intention of changing your opinion, just adding a different one to the discussion. After all this is a discussion forum, not a blog.

Its a review of a product, but up to now, you haven't actually discussed anything about the product. 

When you use battle language like 'infomercial' and "review" with the inverted comma's you are theoretically looking a wee bit pompous while attempting to provoke a response, so you got put back into place and now seemingly seem butthurt about it all.. If you removal the combative grammar and wording, the discussion may have elaborated further.

So you don't play any instrument, people you know do, so thanks for clearing that up. Got there in the end, so my assumption was placed correctly.

Could you link me to some reviews you have done , I know it takes a lot of time to do something selfless like that, so I'd like to appreciate your work and give you some kudos, Im nice like that.

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14 minutes ago, Juancho said:

I agree with pretty well everything said above which is why the latest version of my DAC uses seven discrete power supplies using the latest super regulators and including a choke power supply for the valve output stage. It also reclocks all data, using state of the art NDK clocks. 

I also regularly go to live music events. Along with NOS sounding natural to my ears, I found it was the pre ringing in digital filters that offended my ears and DACs with minimal or no pre ringing always sounded better to me.

I have to say, Im pretty happy to be ignorant to the witchcraft employed to create the sounds that designers and engineers do - it's not my thing so to speak, but I truly admire those that can, afterall, they do what gives me pleasure ;) even more so when they are homebrewed without huge RD facilities, hence my support of MHDT and therefore definitinely looking forward to hearing your DAC sometime!

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4 minutes ago, Juancho said:

I agree with pretty well everything said above which is why the latest version of my DAC uses seven discrete power supplies using the latest super regulators and including a choke power supply for the valve output stage. It also reclocks all data, using state of the art NDK clocks. 

I also regularly go to live music events. Along with NOS sounding natural to my ears, I found it was the pre ringing in digital filters that offended my ears and DACs with minimal or no pre ringing always sounded better to me.

The problem in my view is that you are just not comparing "ringing" and "no ringing" because NOS produces aliasing and significant high-frequency roll-off. I wonder what your opinion would be if you were to roll-off the treble of an OS DAC?

The roll-off and the harmonic and intermodulation distortion will probably have more impact that the absence of ringing.

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5 minutes ago, The Chronicals said:

Its a review of a product, but up to now, you haven't actually discussed anything about the product. 

When you use battle language like 'infomercial' and "review" with the inverted comma's you are theoretically looking a wee bit pompous while attempting to provoke a response, so you got put back into place and now seemingly seem butthurt about it all.. If you removal the combative grammar and wording, the discussion may have elaborated further.

So you don't play any instrument, people you know do, so thanks for clearing that up. Got there in the end, so my assumption was placed correctly.

Could you link me to some reviews you have done , I know it takes a lot of time to do something selfless like that, so I'd like to appreciate your work and give you some kudos, Im nice like that.

I don't do reviews. They're worthless for anyone else but the writer.

And if the Orchid is so good, how come are you selling it? Did you replace it with a NOS DAC?

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5 minutes ago, tuga said:

I don't do reviews. They're worthless for anyone else but the writer.

And if the Orchid is so good, how come are you selling it? Did you replace it with a NOS DAC?

Well thats great, you contribute nothing in that field! Top marks!. Reviews are fantastic and have guided me into making some exceptional choices with my equipment and I thank the people who have taken the time to write them, especially those doing it off their own backs without any industry influence. Always a more genuine review that way.

If you read the thread, properly this time, you will find the answer in there to your question.

I must say, you are getting a bit dull now chap. You know, we only have a finite amount of time on this earth, I think for me personally, I wont invest in any more time conversing with you, because I'll never get those minutes back and they are far too precious to waste. :)

Edited by The Chronicals

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Moderator

Moved as you requested.

I like your review it is thorough and gives a great collection of your experiences. Of course, I have arrived at a similar conclusion having tried a large number of DACs. The NOS DACs just play music as it sounds like in real life and a lot of other DACs sound like good hifi but the more complex they get the less real they sound. 

The overall sound is more than the DAC chip but when companies use NOS DACs they tend to care more about the sound quality to use such an old fashioned chip and the surrounding circuitry is chosen to give a great sound and not just measure well.

A lot of DACs are really computer designed and not meant for humans to listen but for people to admire the charts and graphs. Pointless.

I really like the MHDT DAC and you will have to spend a lot to get a much better sounding DAC.

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