Author Topic: DAC-off at richidoos  (Read 12218 times)

Offline stereofool

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #15 on: June 10, 2007, 03:19:40 AM »
Rich,

Once again, thank you for your hospitality  ;D!

It was great to see everyone again...and meet some 'new' faces, as well.

The equipment amassed certainly covered many flavors, and most were very enjoyable.

Thanks again!
Steve
Have you ever noticed.... Anyone going slower than you is an idiot...and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?

Offline Inscrutable

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #16 on: June 10, 2007, 04:18:03 AM »
Ditto everything Steve said.  Thanks for hosting Rich, and particularly to your wife for doing the yeoman's duty with the kids and putting up with us so late.  And it was really great to see the usuals again, and meet several new folks.  I concur with the sentiment to try to do this more often.  I would love to host, but for the next few months it will be a cranked boombox punctuated by saws and air nailers.  Of course, I can gladly furnish food, hammers, saws, beer, and first aid - usually in pretty much that order  ;)

I've posted some DAC impressions over in the 'Outside' thread, and have to run now but will return later to post other thoughts here.

Offline Carlman

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #17 on: June 10, 2007, 07:35:50 AM »
It's so nice to have events like this... Thank you so much to Rich and his very understanding family.  Rich made homemade grilled burgers, grilled chicken, salad, and it was all very yummy (and healthy)! MANY thanks for that.

It was nice to catch up with some old regulars... It felt like it'd been way too long since I've seen so many of you... I'm all for regular get-togethers.... and would be more than happy to create a forum area here dedicated to our local group (or any group that wants to get together). 

One of my favorite things about having a forum is meeting the folks and understanding their ear so you can better understand their reactions to gear and gauge your own.  Steve reminded me of how valuable that is when we were talking at this meet. (Thanks again, Stereofool.)

The Altmann is the 'real deal' and should be considered by anyone that's looking for the ultimate in 2-channel.  I got a sneak peak the night previous in my own system for about an hour and it was pretty stunning.  "Startlingly convincing" were in my notes.  This DAC exceeds my current room's capabilities.  However, I have a new room being built that will solve that.  I will be trying Scott's new DAC as soon as it comes out.  It's AC-powered and all in one box with a cover... and a little cheaper than the Altmann.  I have a pretty good impression of the Altmann so when I get Scott's new DAC, I'll compare the USB tube dac to it... and see if I get closer to Atlmann-Nirvana-level.

It was nice sharing our views amongst ourselves last night.  We're a nice mixed bag of folks with all sort of differing backgrounds and levels of experience in this hobby... I learned a few things (as always) and hope to keep doing so... Great time, thanks to everyone... I hope you all enjoyed it as much as I did.

Thanks,
Carl

I really enjoy listening to music.

miklorsmith

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #18 on: June 10, 2007, 08:45:46 AM »
Sounds like a gas, thanks for doing it fellas!

Offline richidoo

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #19 on: June 10, 2007, 11:47:33 AM »
Don;t feel to bad for my wife Julie, she went out for dinner, ice cream cones, and a symphony concert at Koka Booth amphitheater playing the 4 Bs Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Berlioz. Bratty kids precluded staying for the Berlioz, but thye all had a blast while I was stuck at home running wires, cooking and owrking on the car. Oh, and a few other things...  :D

I agree with Steve about the need to listen to your creations in the presence of others. I can feel other peoples' impressions so their presence is a great way for me to judge my system, or compositions, or whatever.

Audiophiles that I infrequently gathered with at the beginning of my participation in the hobby were not as available mentally or physically to meet and share the love of the hobby. They don't read forums, so I'm not embarrassed to say it here. They have other priorities and audio is more casual to them than it is for me. So I am grateful now to know a handful of people who share the same interest and dedication to it (obsession?) as me. Last night with the JPS installed, a little pile of BSC PC and Grovers was sitting on the floor, and I remarked teasingly about the pile of wires and how no other crowd would understand that little pile cost 2kilobucks. The joke wasn't funny, partly because I am a terrible joke teller, but also because everyone understands and accepts that good wire costs a lot of money, we are in the same frame of mind, making sharing the hobby much more fun.

We also had a rank newbie named Jason at the G2G, he has a nice mid-fi setup at home and listens to a lot of music. He was especially fun because he was very passionate and vocal about his preferences which were for the zing, brightness, hyped highs, etc.  He hated the Altmann, thinking it was too dull and boring compared to the other DACs which were much more exciting to him. We engaged him in discussion to suggest he listen deeper into the sound and consider the advantages of the NOS approach and listen for the more subtle aspects. That was a lot of fun for me. He is very dedicated to the sport and will hopefully come to future meets.

If it means getting together more often, I don't mind hosting until the other audio dungeons come online, that just means less driving for me. Next year, I won't have to host at all! hehe
Rich

Offline richidoo

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #20 on: June 10, 2007, 12:55:37 PM »

Offline Carlman

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #21 on: June 10, 2007, 01:18:12 PM »
Cool Pix, Rich...

I took a few on Steve's camera... Steve, if you want to email them, feel free... cmcmillan3 at yahoo.com... and I'll post them. 

I'd say post them in the gallery but we're in the midst of upgrading it and likely moving servers again... hopefully 3rd time's a charm.

Thanks,
Carl
I really enjoy listening to music.

Offline stereofool

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #22 on: June 10, 2007, 03:35:42 PM »
Pics are in the process of being on their way to you...as I type :D!
Steve
Have you ever noticed.... Anyone going slower than you is an idiot...and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?

Offline RichardS

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #23 on: June 11, 2007, 06:32:21 AM »
I also had a fun time -- it's great meeting and listening with others who find pleasure listening to superbly reproduced recorded music. Audiophilia can be a lonely avocation at times, and there aren't many who appreciate our fanatical dedication to this pursuit (the cables Shane hooked up cost as much as a car).

I was surprsingly impressed with the Altman DAC. Very natural and easy on the ears, though a face and body (battery) only a mother could love. . The RAKK DAC was also very good, though not as relaxing. The Altman drew you in more. The RAKK made you stand up and take notice. The Nixon was good, but not in the same league. Same with the Oritek-modded Zhalou I brought. Was a bit flat and dull and compressed in comparison, though both are quite good for the money. I wish I could have brought my Audio Logic 24mxl, but I sold it the day before.

Rich's living room and wall treatments looked as nice as I've seen in a living room, even with big speakers pulled out from the wall, but he's got a challenge in such a large open space. Sounded really good, though, and all those tubes provided a nice (and warm) contrast to my personal SS system.

Would be interesting to know how much of the Altmans 'attraction' is in the battery power supply. I recently acquired a Red Wine modded Olive Musica that I use as a transport, and it's definitely a step up from the stock one. At Rich's, the Altman eclipsed the Rakk that had a $3500 power cord on it. While I certainly appreciate the improvements of expensive power cords (and signal cables) I think it's interesting to see a movement away from the grid completely.

Any way, thanks to Rich and all for a wonderful time. I had only planned to stay an hour or two, but ended up staying till the end....

Offline Carlman

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #24 on: June 11, 2007, 06:48:36 AM »
Thanks for your comments, Richard... and it made me think maybe we should've put some of the other stuff on a real power conditioner rather than a strip shared with everything else... could've helped the results a bit.... I should've brought my Haley if nothing else... oh well... It's always something. ;)

Steve sent me the photos... working on the upload now... Check the Gallery...

-Carl
I really enjoy listening to music.

Offline hometheaterdoc

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #25 on: June 11, 2007, 07:47:20 AM »
Many thanks to Rich for hosting another event.  It was great to see everyone again, as well as some new faces.  I've been so buried with things that it's great to be able to unwind and relax with friends listening to gear.  It's amazing how little time I get to actually do that... and here I thought having an audio/video business would allow me to do more listening/viewing ;)  silly me....

For the DAC-OFF, it wasn't really a competition for me.  It's ugly as sin, but the Altmann just flat out sounded like music to me.  It was more organic, didn't have any grunge and had a fleshed out body and weight to everything.  Piano sounding like piano in the room instead of a stereo playing back a CD with piano on it. 

I, too am very curious to see how much of that was the battery power versus the lack of power outlets Rich had so the digital gear was forced to share a power strip.  I must admit that I was chuckling to myself that I was plugging a $3500 JPS Aluminata power cord into a $3 power strip.  I think the digital front end would have definitely benefited from a Running Springs Haley or similar power conditioner.  Rich, you really need to get one of them from me ;) hehehehe

Rich's room looked amazing compared to the last meeting.  It also improved exponentially with the treatments in there.  The system as a whole still wasn't quite my cup of tea (it shouted a little too much at me), but it was sounding really good overall.

I didn't get the same earth shattering experience when we put the JPS Aluminata stuff into Rich's system as I did when I put it into the Butler/Usher combo at my place.  But it definitely relaxed things tremendously, brought a visceral grip to things that just wasn't there before (seriously great bass for a tube amp), and layered things a bit better.  I much prefered the decay of things and detail retrieval with the Aluminata.  I don't think Carl liked the way the pacing changed.... but that's just his preference versus mine ;) It was definitely several steps above where it had been before adding the cables (as it should be given what this stuff costs).  But where it was a no brainer in my system because of the incredible transformation it made to my demo system, it'd be hard to justify it in Rich's current setup.  Maybe some of the lower level JPS stuff, Rich ;)

Overall, great fun, and I can't wait to do it again..... provided I can find 5 free minutes to attend....



Shane Sangster
Night & Day Audio - AMR, Alpha Design Labs, AURALiC, Audeze, Bakoon, Devialet, ENIGMAcoustics, Exogal, Harbeth, iFi Audio, Lumin Music, M2Tech, PS Audio, Pure Audio, REL Acoustics Ltd, Sennheiser, Tannoy, Unison Research, WyWires & more

miklorsmith

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #26 on: June 11, 2007, 08:26:37 AM »
Thanks again, I think this was the most "productive" stop on the Tour, best for last, eh?

On batteries, this is my third NOS battery DAC.  I had a RWA Monica II that I loved.  It was trumped by the Ack! 2.0.  Both are destroyed by the Altmann.  I like batteries as a power source - I'm running batteries to my modded SB, RWA amps and a battery/AC supply to the Lessloss DAC rig I'm using now.  Oh yeah, the modded Teac amp in my 2nd system is batteries too.

Now if I can figure out how to run the Lamm pre off batteries . . .

Offline bpape

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #27 on: June 11, 2007, 10:22:44 AM »
How would you compare the Lessloss to the Altmann?

Bryan
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miklorsmith

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #28 on: June 11, 2007, 10:39:44 AM »
I haven't had the Altmann for 6 months.  And, part of the Lessloss strategy is having a transport that includes a clock-disabling function.  That isn't required, but is part of their "best" solution.  The unit does sound very good without the clock-master arrangement and I'll be assessing that as part of the full review to come.

These DACs are from different camps - the Lessloss is definitely of the detail-retrieval angle.  But, it does it in a most un-digital way.  It isn't the tone monster the Altmann is, but I could see possibly not wanting too much enhancement from the source, depending on system.  For a really tubey system, the Lessloss may be better.

When I get the Altmann back, I'll try to do some more comparisons.

I did some back here:

http://www.audionervosa.com/index.php?topic=60.0

The TacT has left and I'll be able to hear the Altmann in all its ugly glory!

Offline bpape

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Re: DAC-off at richidoos
« Reply #29 on: June 11, 2007, 10:58:15 AM »
Well, that's one more thing in favor of me listening to the Altmann.  Tone is THE thing for me, all else may be important but if the tone ain't right, I'm not happy.

Bryan
I am serious... and don't call me Shirley