XXHighEnd - The Ultra HighEnd Audio Player
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1  Ultimate Audio Playback / Chatter and forum related stuff / Re: Ahem (RME) on: April 05, 2021, 04:23:14 pm

It appears that the author of the article you attached made some fundamental errors in setup when taking measurements. Corrected measurements (by another person) are shown here:

https://www.amazona.de/community/ueberpruefende-messungen-am-rme-adi-2-pro-fsr/

Mani.
2  Ultimate Audio Playback / Chatter and forum related stuff / Re: Ahem (RME) on: April 05, 2021, 12:06:29 pm
... their power supply seems to be in need of improvement.

Hi Joachim, it's useful that it has a 12V DC input for power. I use a Paul Hynes linear PSU with mine. I haven't tried the stock SMPS that came with the unit, so don't know how much difference it makes. In my case, I don't have any SMPSs attached to my audio mains circuit and wanted to keep it that way.

I have to say that I continue to be very impressed with its SQ as a DAC.

Mani.
3  Ultimate Audio Playback / Chatter and forum related stuff / Re: Ahem (RME) on: April 01, 2021, 04:33:19 pm
... as it not only records at twice the speed of any normal audio analyser (which would be 192 KHz), but it also records at a bit depth of 32 (normal would be 24).

Actually 4x that - it can record at 768, if your recording software can accommodate that.

I hardly dare to say it. Maybe I must get used to the special sound. Maybe it *is* special. But it really is something else.

Hmm... I can't tell - is this a belated 1st of April attempt?

Maybe Mani has a special view on this, as he has this RME quite some longer already (I think).

I've had mine since August last year, but hadn't tried it as a DAC in either of my systems until only recently. I bought it primarily for my vinyl digitization project (which never seems to get off the ground), so the RME has remained in my basement 'studio' gathering dust for the most part.

I brought the RME up to my office system when I put the F4 monos in. They have zero gain, and I wanted to hear how they sounded being pushed. My NOS1 (XLR not BNC) was fine for the sort of sound levels I usually go up to in my office, but not for pushing the F4s, so I brought the RME up for its +24dBu output capability. I have to say that I was surprised and impressed with the sound - more dynamic and alive-sounding than the NOS1 when level-matched (by quite a large margin)... in this system at least.

Btw, Mani, nice try :

 Wink I was waiting for an announcement from you, but when one never came, I thought I'd announce something of my own.

Mani.
4  Ultimate Audio Playback / Chatter and forum related stuff / Re: My phone sounds better than the NOS1 on: April 01, 2021, 10:37:38 am
George, you're probably doing this already, but make sure you set your phone to 'flight mode'  Happy

Mani.
5  Ultimate Audio Playback / Chatter and forum related stuff / My phone sounds better than the NOS1 on: April 01, 2021, 08:04:33 am
The other day I was bored, so I made up a mini-jack to stereo BNC connector. I connected my phone (Samsung Galaxy S10) to my Blaxius^2 cables, pressed play, and... was completely blown away by the sound. The deepest bass, the clearest mids and the most pristine highs I've ever heard.

No more XX or NOS1 for me. It's the phone all the way now.

Mani.
6  Ultimate Audio Playback / Chatter and forum related stuff / Re: NOS1 driving speakers directly... almost on: March 14, 2021, 01:32:07 pm
The speakers are spec'd at 97dB/W@1m. The F4 mono needs a 10V swing to achieve its full 100W output into 8 Ohms, but I don't need anywhere near that power in my office. I've been listening at -12dB for most part, and it's about as loud as I would want in my office.

Bear in mind, I'm using a Mach II and Lush^2 in my office. Compared to a Mach III and Lush^3, it's probably not surprising that it's not as exciting a sound as it could be, perhaps.

Still, very, very nice to listen to though.

Mani.
7  Ultimate Audio Playback / Chatter and forum related stuff / NOS1 driving speakers directly... almost on: March 14, 2021, 01:12:17 pm
I'd been intrigued by the First Watt F4 amp since it came out quite a while ago now. I say 'amp', but it's actaully a class A 'impedance converter' with no voltage gain or feedback.

With a run of only 100 in total (each assembled by Nelson Pass himself), I never thought I'd get around to ever hearing one, let alone owning one. In NP's own words, "Overall, it is one of the best sounding amplifiers, and if you can live with unity voltage gain in your amplifier, it is possibly your best choice."

So, I jumped at the opportunity last year of buying not one, but two F4s, to use as balanced monos for my office system. But only yesterday did I finally get around to hooking my (non-B75) NOS1 up to them.

So, how does the NOS1 sound driving the speakers pretty much as directly as it's possible to get?

It's a really interesting sound. Zero brightness, with a more 'wooden' (as opposed to 'metallic') sound. No element of the sound brings particular attention to itself. Really beautiful midrange detail though. And totally integrated from top to bottom.

In many ways, a sort of 'boring' sound, because there's not a lot to say about any one aspect of it. And yet, really, really lovely to listen to. It's how I always hoped tubed amps would sound, but never actually did in my experience.

And all this with a 'mere' Lush^2! (Peter, there may be a new order coming your way  Happy.)

Just thought I'd share...

Mani.
8  Ultimate Audio Playback / XXHighEnd Support / Re: No more 'Straight Contiguous'... all of a sudden on: March 07, 2021, 08:46:23 pm
Ha! Of course, everything's started working properly again. Even SFS 200 works fine now. I haven't done anything.

I really don't know what caused the error.
9  Ultimate Audio Playback / XXHighEnd Support / Re: No more 'Straight Contiguous'... all of a sudden on: March 07, 2021, 08:42:14 pm
All 48GB is detected...
10  Ultimate Audio Playback / XXHighEnd Support / Re: No more 'Straight Contiguous'... all of a sudden on: March 07, 2021, 08:03:01 pm
Thanks Peter.

It's the Mach III. Yes, I will swap the memory from the Mach II if I have to.

Max SFS has always been set to 24.00. I've just brought it down to 4.00 and set SFS to 1.00. Playback bow works again  Happy

I usually keep SFS<2.00 anyway, so as long this continues to work, I should be OK. The only issue I might run into is playing MQA files... but I very rarely do this anyway.

Strange that this has started to happen all of a sudden...

Mani.
11  Ultimate Audio Playback / XXHighEnd Support / No more 'Straight Contiguous'... all of a sudden on: March 07, 2021, 06:37:27 pm
It's been a long while since I've bothered playing around with any settings in XX, but thought I'd try a few things out. Playing around with different SFS settings, I got the error message attached - I've been using Straight Contiguous since it was introduced and can't recall ever getting this error in the past. I wasn't at all bothered because I was in RAM and knew that if something got messed up, it'd clear itself on a reboot. But no...

I've rebooted back into SSD and back into Normal too. The error message remains, no matter what I set SFS to. And 'User Rights Assignment' looks fine.

I can only conclude that this must be a hardware issue. Something wrong with my 48GB memory perhaps?

I've activated 'Log Activities', but *.log files don't seem to show much at all.

Ideas?

Mani.
12  Ultimate Audio Playback / Cables (Community induced) / Re: Lush^3 on: November 30, 2020, 10:06:03 am
... but I personally like it very much as it shows the character of the Blumenhofer Concert X speaker (which I like for its special sound).

New speakers Peter?

Mani.
13  Ultimate Audio Playback / Cables (Community induced) / Re: Lush^3 on: September 29, 2020, 05:27:30 pm
I recently changed to an SFS of 4.00, but I'm back down to 0.69. Works really well now... loads of detail without any edginess.

(Sorry for the running commentary, but I can't quite believe what I'm hearing... from an extra layer of shielding in the USB cable!!!)

Mani.
14  Ultimate Audio Playback / Cables (Community induced) / Re: Lush^3 on: September 29, 2020, 05:02:12 pm
Thanks Peter. Would twisting it 180 degrees have been OK?

The more I listen, the more impressed I am. The sheer NATURALNESS of this thing is incredible. NOTHING grates. And yet the details are all there... moreso even. And where did the bottom octave come from? My speakers aren't meant to go that low!

All from a bloody USB cable???

Mani.
15  Ultimate Audio Playback / Cables (Community induced) / Re: Lush^3 on: September 29, 2020, 04:30:51 pm
My Lush^3 is in! It was a bit of a pain installing, as its B-connector is rotated exactly 180 degrees to that of the Lush^2. So, I had the choice of twisting the cable, or simply swapping the vertical positions of the Mach III and NOS1. I went for the latter. And for now, I'm keeping the shipped configuration - A: B-R, B:

The first thing to say about the sound is that... well, it hasn't got screwed up over that with the Lush^2... good

Early days, and I've just rebooted the Mach III and NOS1, which often changes the sound, but so far... I'd say there is less 'digital glare' coming through, but with no loss of detail at all. In other words, everything sounds more natural.

One of my 'test tracks' is David Sylvian's "When Poets Dreamed of Angels". His voice can sound quite grating in various parts of this track, but with the Lush^3, I'm not hearing any sibilance at all. Everything sounds very natural, and yet with all the details intact.

Initial thoughts - impressed!

Mani.
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