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NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC (Read 12577 times)
stone_of_tone
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #30 - 09/17/13 at 22:08:19
 
Beowulf, I do like that it has two HDMI inputs to pump some DVD audio and Blu-Ray audio out of it.  If compatible/not wonky....firmware this and firmware that..... . -S
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will
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #31 - 09/17/13 at 22:25:57
 
It is sort of amazing that it sounds great right off. Good sign! It would appear that just the caps in there are going to take a little time to reach their potential, not to mention everything else! Great news for NAD.
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Lon
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #32 - 09/17/13 at 23:22:29
 
Cool.
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maddog07
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #33 - 09/17/13 at 23:28:57
 
Orangcrush,

I have a W4S DAC-2 and a few others at the moment.... and though I have never heard or seen the Anedio D2 or the Weis, I have compared my W4S to the NAD and at least a dozen other DACs... I have never heard the W4S sound:

"dark, thick and veiled"

compared to anything I've tried.. very interesting.  I never heard it described this way.  Its certainly not "forward" if that is ones definition of "detailed", but it has about as much rez, air and transient speed, dynamics, snap and realism as any DAC I've heard.  Makes me wonder what the context of the system was you heard it in and if the unit you heard was "in spec" or something else was fubar.

Just goes to show how so many companies can make $$ producing and selling DAC's... as there are so many varying sonic tastes, systems and room synergy to contend with.

I also am a firm believer that in today's digital world you do not have to possess a 2nd mortgage priced DAC in order to get world class sound.  The DAC chips are getting so advanced that performance differences are pretty narrow.  The real variable is the analog output stage after the DAC and filter.  And the implementation of the input to allow for different bit and sampling rates, input format, remote control, etc. are the only real distinguishing traits.  If you don't believe it, just go have a listen to any of the current crop of sub $500 overachiever's in volume matched A/B's and prepare to be stunned!
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orangecrush
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #34 - 09/18/13 at 03:25:18
 
Compared to Anedio and Weiss, its like black and white for me. The Nad I place just above the WFS in the transparency department.
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maddog07
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #35 - 09/18/13 at 16:41:12
 

doesn't line up that way to my ears or the systems & rooms I've tried it in... about 5-6 A/B's to date.  

In fact I haven't heard what I would classify as "Night & Day" differences between DAC's/players in years.  The gaps in SQ have narrowed significantly as the processing chips have advanced.  Generally one can hear/identify "differences", but not night & day like you could with dacs/players back in the late 80's and thru the 90's.  The quality of the recording/production in most cases has far greater impact on the SQ coming out of the speakers anymore - just my experience (2-3 DAC's per year pass thru my systems on average, I have 5 at the moment) and opinion.

but as we all know, hearing is an individual "perception" - if you think you hear it - then you do - end of argument.

but I would encourage anybody out there who is DAC shopping in that price range, listen to the W4S for yourself.  And you should also have a listen to the Schiit Audio DAC's too before you lay down any more of your hard-earned $$$$.  Mike Moffat at Schiit goes way back with Theta Digital, and they know what they're doing.

As always, let your ears be the judge!  

happy listening..!!   Smiley
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stone_of_tone
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #36 - 09/18/13 at 20:23:05
 
Yes, let your ears be the judge.

I am getting transparency with the M51 (and my AA front end) because of the transparency and wide bandwidth that the SE84CS provides with the original Svetlana SV83. Plus, my Kimber Select 1030 IC & Kimber Select 3033 Speaker Cable....the resolution with these does not allow me to use my Parker Audio Crusader or Zu Audio Union Speakers.  These two Speakers just flat out can't handle the resolution...especially in the extended highs.

Furthermore, the low noise flow of the internal preamp and quality precision of it...is to praise NAD with deep pockets for doing so.  Cheers, Stone
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stone_of_tone
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #37 - 09/19/13 at 18:08:34
 
.....I am going to get the Anedio D2 in the next few weeks. With every intention of keeping it along with the wonderful M51. It is great that their are a half dozen good DACS out there and reasonable.

I had a chance to Listen to the M51 again this morning...and you just want to turn it up more and more! I am very pleased.  -S
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will
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #38 - 09/19/13 at 18:17:08
 
Great news. Thanks for keeping us up on your explorations!
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stone_of_tone
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #39 - 09/19/13 at 18:31:07
 
Will do Will.

Different flavor's of slight variations.

AMPS:

SE84CS
SuperZen CKC
Mystery Amplifier......Pending Purchase... .

Digital Front Ends:

NAD M51
Audio Alchemy (DTI Pro-32 & 3.0 DAC with preamp)
Anedio D2...............Pending Purchase... .

Over & Out...for a little while. But, I will return with impressions of these 3 Digital Front Ends compared...and down the road....the Mystery Amp on its respective thread.  Cheers all, Stone of Tone
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orangecrush
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #40 - 09/19/13 at 20:59:36
 
That's awesome Stone, can't wait till you get the Anedio as it is so much more transparent. Definitely could be too much for some set-ups, but if your a resolution junky, you will love it.

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stone_of_tone
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #41 - 09/20/13 at 16:39:29
 
How can I stay away!

I ordered the Anedio D2 this morning!

Orangecrush, I am a resolution junky. The Holographic Kimber 1030 just gets the hell out of the way and is so musical.

Fourth day on my NAD M51 and my initial impressions still hold...and she is burning in nicely. I think because of the lower noise floor/preamp integration in conjunction with the 35 bit...etc...has me loving this DAC.

Big, bold & clean....great Timbre. Last word in Transparency like my Audio Alchemy front End = NO. However, what the NAD51 is doing in other area's....it is still in my System and staying. It might end up in the Living room Rig (to be detailed at a later date)...or my great Bedroom System (to be detailed/explained)....so, the NAD M51 is staying.

The Anedio D2 might very well dethrone it. But, it also has to dethrone my Audio Alchemy too.  Orangecrush?...I am betting it is a keeper.

I still have to A-B-A it back to my Audio Alchemy reference.
Of course, I look forward to comparing the 3 of them. A lot of fun and to hell with 30 day returns....I am keeping the 2 of them and will offer impressions of them in 3 different Systems over the next year...and with the SE84CS, CKC.........AND MYSTERY AMP.  

A lot of fun!  Cheers, Stone

PS-I should mention, I'm currently doing Redbook only via Illuminati D-60 output from Transport. However, I will dive into hi-rez with the Blu-Ray Audio offerings....gleaning the 2 channel layer via the HDMI input of the NAD M51...and go from there.... .
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« Last Edit: 09/20/13 at 17:08:15 by stone_of_tone »  

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will
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #42 - 09/20/13 at 18:07:35
 
It is great to hear your enthusiasm for these new pieces. Great fun! I am looking forwards to future developments!
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« Last Edit: 09/20/13 at 18:08:11 by will »  

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stone_of_tone
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #43 - 09/20/13 at 20:49:38
 
You bet Will.

The fall/winter with the 3 front ends will be fun.

I hope to place my order for the Mystery Amp by Nov 1st....with delivery February 1st or better.  It would be nice to wrap up the Winter enjoying and breaking that in.  Have a great weekend!   -S
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orangecrush
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Re: NAD M51 Direct Digital DAC
Reply #44 - 09/21/13 at 16:56:47
 
Maddog, I find with DACS, you need to live with them for a while, a few weeks, to really hear their differences and personality. Like anything else in audio, DAC are voiced by the designer. I hope you can hear the Anedio one day to compare and hear the difference for yourself. I am not saying it is better, just the most transparent DAC I have heard to date from any other DAC. In COMPARISON, the W4S is dark in my system. I am not alone in this, John Darko wrote a good review of the W4S. However, as you said, we each hear differently.
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