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Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC (Read 14554 times)
giorgino
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #15 - 08/05/09 at 13:15:51
 
Excellent paper Steve.

Looking forward to the Zen DAC's development. Do you have any thoughts as to the price brackets of the DAC with various stages?
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Lon
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #16 - 08/05/09 at 15:17:35
 
I understand (in a sense) a little better now. You can blend all three of these "blocks" together.

Odd concept.

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Steve Deckert
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #17 - 08/05/09 at 16:02:35
 
Quote:
Is this the add on I need to grab for the direct bit for bit playback? foo_out_ks, Kernal Streaming support version 1.2.2 ??


Yes
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JasonGmt
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #18 - 08/05/09 at 18:51:58
 
Thanks, I was able to find a working mirror to DL EAC from.
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toddathan
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #19 - 08/05/09 at 19:24:58
 
Steve--would you rate the headphone amp performance of this DAC over the CSP2?

Also, if I understand you, the headphone and preamp capabilities would operate off of the third, solid-state, block?

Totally interested in this.  I was about to buy the CSP2 as a headphone amp and then upgrade my source.  Might be able to do it in one step now.
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Steve Deckert
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #20 - 08/05/09 at 20:47:14
 
JasonGmt,

If I go back and forth between the CSP2 and the new DAC, I have a hard time deciding which is actually better.  Although they sound somewhat different from each other, I think the sound quality is the same on both.

The solid state block , or final, is what drives the headphones, yes.

Steve  

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Walter
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #21 - 08/08/09 at 04:54:27
 
Steve,
I can see with your design that you've built the ultimate with a lot of options to tweak the sound to compensate for differences in recordings and tastes, etc.

But I can see maybe an additional simpler (and also less costly) product that basically consists of your DAC supporting USB and coax and your tube gain stage with a control for attenuation.  I've built a home setup currently based on the Monica USB DAC and your ZKit4 & ZKit5, I can tell you that simple setup sounds really, really good. I think your ZKit4 & ZKit5 alone do alot for the sound.
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ptime
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #22 - 08/09/09 at 00:24:38
 
steve, curious if you've heard some of the nos dacs out there that have used this 8 chip in parallel design with 1ppm txco reclocking chip...valab, gigalab, dac ah, audio mirror, etc...?  except the output stages, anything you're doing differently that beats the crap out of those in your implementation?
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Steve Deckert
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #23 - 08/17/09 at 18:30:26
 
Quote:
steve, curious if you've heard some of the nos dacs out there that have used this 8 chip in parallel design with 1ppm txco reclocking chip...valab, gigalab, dac ah, audio mirror, etc...?


Yes, I've been trying them out for the past year.  Of the 8 chip models the Gigalab MK I was the best I had found for the money.  It had a minor issue with clipping on the digital input side that has been mostly resolved with the Mk II, however the unit seems to have lost a tiny bit of ground in sound quality, but still recommended.  

Quote:
except the output stages, anything you're doing differently that beats the crap out of those in your implementation?
 

Not really no.  I haven't put any of the DACs into production yet, but when I settle on what will go into production, the biggest thing will be component selection, execution of the board, soldering skills, and consistency.  It would be nice if you could stick something like a Gigalabs in the front end of a DAC project and take it into production because it would dramatically lower the cost.  Problem is consistency changes from unit to unit.  

After spending some time with my prototype on the Acustat Monitor IV's of mine, I've decided I like the 12 chip approach best, based on Doede Douma's work:  http://www.dddac.de/  


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giorgino
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #24 - 08/22/09 at 14:00:16
 
The 12 DAC chip approach would tweak my interest in this. It would also have the added advantage of differentiating itself from the other TDA1543 NOS DACs on the market.

I'm curious to find out about the 2nd block:
1) Is it possible for it to provide the equivalent function of the CSP2 of headphone amp and preamp (volume control)
2) The reason for creating an output level of 10V when the most amps are full power at 2V. I would value a tube headphone amp more than the massive gain.

Thanks
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« Last Edit: 08/22/09 at 14:00:50 by giorgino »  
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rmt
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #25 - 11/02/09 at 17:13:03
 
Per Steve D
"As you enjoy your 1000's of CD's through whatever transport and this DAC you can take some of your favorites and get an error free wav file on your hard drive and play it back with foobar using the appropriate plug in for bit for bit output and listen to it.  The sonic result will in many cases motivate you to start archiving your CD collection.  Besides, CD's don't last forever.  As the plastic ages they develop errors."

I only have hundreds not thousands of CDs, but that still makes it a long time to upload to a PC hard drive.  I use software like Real One to copy onto a hard drive now.  I would prefer software that is faster and still accurate enough.  I also expect to move to an Apple laptop.

What my point is though is I started buying CDs maybe 20 years ago.  They all are still working fine.  I have gone through lots of computers since then mostly by crashes and losing all my data. The idea that PCs are better long term storage devices versus a compact disk is not one I am sold on.
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Lon
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #26 - 11/02/09 at 18:44:14
 
Me either.

I really don't want to combine my computer and stere system, and won't.
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Doorman
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #27 - 11/02/09 at 20:29:22
 
Ditto!
Among other things , I value the album covers/liner notes!
Don
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Lon
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #28 - 11/02/09 at 20:32:51
 
I keep imagining we'll see news of Steve's machine any day.

If he offers one with two coaxial digital inputs I'll be tempted.  As long as it is in "Decware price zone."
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rmt
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Re: Development of the Zen Triode NOS DAC
Reply #29 - 11/04/09 at 23:26:00
 
I doubt the new DAC will be in the typical Decware frugal price range.  I do believe that the product will be fantastic for whatever price range Steve can get it to.  I am anxiously awaiting for the DAC to hit the market.

Upgraded digitizing CDs by running an external hard drive to lap top using windows media 11.  Very, very, fast compared to my old PC clunker.    8-)
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