Welcome, Guest. Please Login or Register
Decware Audio Forums
12/16/17 at 13:10:10 





 



Pages: 1 2 3 4 
Send Topic Print
Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP ! (Read 36849 times)
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #50 - 09/23/14 at 03:17:45
 
It is a new world experience of music listening, if your system reach 4K UHD of sound quality. You can hear all low level of sound detail which is normally be covered by noise floor. The ambient sound helps you to feel more reality of  music band existing together in your room.

My assumption of low level of sound detail which I can hear after mod is that (While before mod, I cannot hear) :

1) It should be related with pure silver wire. It is a unique characteristic of pure silver which provides you to hear low level of sound details more than pure copper.

2) When 2 cables Duelund hook up 2 cable are used in one signal path, the friction or resistance to against electron flow in signal cable is highly reduce. It enhance more conductance or electron easily flow in signal cable. Before mod, the signal (electron) of low level of sound detail is blocked or cannot pass resistance or friction in signal cable.

It is a passive method to achieve low level detail of sound quality reproduction. It is pure method, no manipulate the signal. But it cannot enhance more dynamic and contrast.

The other way is active method of Amp, Pre-Amp and Source equipment design to make stronger signal of low level of sound detail to overcome friction or resistance in signal cable. It manipulates in signal which makes sound signal changing from origin, more or less depend on design. But it can enhance more dynamic and contrast of music.

At this point, I would like to summary of mod as MOD PACKAGE No 1

ZMA mod.
1) Change binding post to be WBT 0705 Cu Next Gen Pole terminal.
   USD 328,  get 20% discount, net price is USD 262.40 per set of 4.
2) Changing RCA jack to be WBT 0210 Ag RCA female jack.
   USD 194, get 40% discount, net price is USD 116.40 per pair.
3) Changing IEC inlet to be Furutech FI-03 (R).
   USD 28, get 20% discount, net price is USD 22.40.
4) Add bypassing caps, Obbligato 10 uF 630 VDC Premium Gold.
  USD 27, get 20% discount, net price is USD 21.60 each. Pay USD 43.20 for pair.

Zen Switching Box mod.
1)  Changing RCA jack to be WBT 0210 Ag RCA female jack.
   USD 194, get 40% discount, net price is USD 116.40 per pair. Pay     USD 232.80 for 2 pairs.
2) Changing resistor to be Vishay VAR series "Naked" foil resistor.
   USD 15.95, get 20% discount, net price is USD 12.76. Pay USD 25.52 for pair.
3) Changing internal wire to be Duelund hook up 2 wire (double cable per one signal path).
  USD 50.20 per feet, get 50% discount, net price is USD 25.10. Pay USD 200.8 for 8 feet.

Total cost is USD 904.21. (no internal signal wire changing in ZMA)
If internal signal wire in ZMA is changed to be Duelund hook up wire, total cost is USD 1,506.61

In case of you don't have Zen switching box and mod only ZMA. Your cost will be USD 1,047.8  (You need 24 feet of Duelund hoop up wire).

Someone may think that would it be better to spend this money to get new equipment to improve sound quality. For me, it is worth to do to solve source of problem which is in Amp. And I use ZMA for stereo system and home theater system. I use one bullet to get two birds at the same time!

Next will be mod by capacitor changing to be Duelund CAST PIO copper capacitor.

Back to top
« Last Edit: 09/23/14 at 03:41:26 by vyokyong »  

IMG_7783.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
Lonely Raven
Seasoned Member
****


Jack of all Trades,
Master of None

Posts: 2964
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #51 - 09/23/14 at 14:42:29
 

Wow, that's a lot of Duelund hook up wire!

Back to top
 
 
WWW Lonely Raven   IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #52 - 09/24/14 at 03:26:58
 
The package 1 is the extreme case. Here are some alternatives to reduce cost;

1) Using KLEI Harmony®Plug instead of WBT Nex Gent. But I have never try them.
http://kleinnovations.com/kle-innovations-klei-products/harmony-plug/klei-pure-h...

2) In case of Duelund hook up wire replacing internal signal wire in ZMA.
   2.1) You can reduce by using 1 cable of Duelund hook up wire per signal wire. (4 cables of 3 feet cable for positive and negative wire of left and right channel) Total wire length is 12 feet.
   2.2) You can use Duelund hook up wire for positive wire only and using current internal signal wire (both positive and negative cable) for negative wire of left and right channel. Total Duelund hook up wire is 6 feet.

The performance will be compromised but it is better than current non-mod ZMA.

For Stone of Tone, you may consider
Kimber 4-Wire Braid GQ
Stranded Teflon Hook-Up Wire
4 x 20 awg, GQ-AgSS- 4-Wire Braids - Clear "GQ" (GyroQuadratic) Stranded TC, Hyper-pure VariStrand Silver, V-Teflon Insulation, Per Foot
$217.88 USD Price
From partsconnexion.
http://www.partsconnexion.com/wire_hookup_kimber_4wt.html
So that your signal cable from your Pre-amp CSP3+ RCA jack to ZMA and internal signal wire in ZMA will be all Kimber Silver wire.

Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 09/24/14 at 03:44:02 by vyokyong »  

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
beowulf
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 1298
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #53 - 09/24/14 at 06:44:24
 
I'm using a set of interconnects made from Duelund silver with silk and oil insulation and Furutech FP-101(G) RCA plugs (with a special filament-spring type center pin).  This cable is what I call a tone monster and IMO most people would find quite beautiful.  I'm sure it would sound awesome as hookup and internal wire.
Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #54 - 09/24/14 at 07:48:42
 
Thanks Beowulf to confirm Duelund hook up 2 (version 2) wire. It is a magic when two cables of Duelund are used per signal path. (2 cables for positive and 2 cables for negative). Before I buy Duelund hook up wire, I try to calculate to order minimum length in order to save money and get shortest signal path. But after test with double cables per signal path. I have no reluctant any more to order more Duelund hook up wire. It transform your Hi Fi system from High Definition sound to be 4K Ultra High Definition sound. Not only very low level of sound details which you can hear clearly (Clarity and Transparency), timing, pace, speed is precise with ease. All pitch, nuance, sound wavering are heard clearly.    

Back to top
 
 

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
Lonely Raven
Seasoned Member
****


Jack of all Trades,
Master of None

Posts: 2964
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #55 - 09/24/14 at 14:41:27
 
Quote:
I'm using a set of interconnects made from Duelund silver with silk and oil insulation and Furutech FP-101(G) RCA plugs (with a special filament-spring type center pin).  This cable is what I call a tone monster and IMO most people would find quite beautiful.  I'm sure it would sound awesome as hookup and internal wire.


Which version are you using for that? The 1.0 or 2.0? I was already planning on trying this for a short interconnect, especially if I get a CSP3. I just wasn't sure which thickness would be appropriate.

http://www.partsconnexion.com/wire_hookup_duelund.html

Back to top
 
 
WWW Lonely Raven   IP Logged
beowulf
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 1298
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #56 - 09/24/14 at 23:20:21
 
Lonely Raven wrote on 09/24/14 at 14:41:27:
Which version are you using for that? The 1.0 or 2.0? I was already planning on trying this for a short interconnect, especially if I get a CSP3. I just wasn't sure which thickness would be appropriate.


Mine are the 1.0 (I got them from ZenWave Audio aka Dave's Cables).  I haven't had the chance to listen to the 2.0 as of yet ... I did find a comparison online here and here though.  The second link compares the 0.5 to the 2.0 ... I'm thinking the 1.0 should fall somehwere in between his findings LOL ... Grin

I should also mention that since I only had one pair .. I tried them in a couple places and preferred them running from my DAC to Preamp.  Then from my Preamp to Amp I still use the Decware Silver Reference.  I will most likely get another pair of those or the ZenWave D3's ... I'll have a shootout between those once I get some other stuff paid off. Wink
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 09/24/14 at 23:27:49 by beowulf »  
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #57 - 09/25/14 at 04:09:19
 
Yesterday, I did a great home run of mod again.

There is no cost of component, just some effort. I rewire of internal signal wire in ZMA to bypass volume pot. Yes, bypassing volume pot so that ZMA's volume cannot be adjusted. To adjust volume, I use volume control in my Accuphase DP77 CD/SACD player instead.

Result : like opening the window and looking straight out without anything in between.
So my Motto still stands: LESS IS MORE or KISS.
It seems as a veil between me and the musicians have been removed.
Attacks on each note are clearer and more distinct. Music sounds fresh and alive.
Some small details that seemed to be smeared together before can now be clearly heard, if the recording allows it. Sense of front to back is more increased.
You may trade off ability of adjustment between two volume pots of Power Amp and Pre-Amp to achieve your prefer dynamic and contrast. But that adjustment ability suck your lifelike and details of your music out. You have to consider your total audio signal path from source to Power Amp, how many units of  volume pot in your audio signal chain. The more volume pots, the more veil between you and music.

Volume pot is one major source of signal distortion in your signal chain. You need only one volume control and the best quality in your signal chain.

I have done research online about kinds of volume control:

-Volume pot or Volume potentiometer. It is most general use in commercial equipment because of little space needed and low cost. But it is lowest quality compared to other kinds of volume control.

-Volume stepped attenuators (consist of resistors). It is much better than volume pot and is used in high end system.
http://www.placetteaudio.com/remote_control.htm

-TVC (Transformer Volume Control) and AVC (Autoformer Volume Control). It is more advance by using transformer instead of resistors.
http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/fr.pl?rprea&1169253394&read&keyw&zzdecware...
http://www.enjoythemusic.com/magazine/equipment/0407/promitheus_audio_tvc_se.htm...
http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/fr.pl?aamps&1159194844&openfrom&101&4#...
http://www.enjoythemusic.com/diy/0611/slagle_autoformer_volume_control_modules.h...

- Lightspeed Attenuator (LDR).  There is perfect clarity, a widened soundstage, separation of instruments, and seemingly infinite detail. What makes this passive preamplifier interesting is that there are no contact points in the form of a "wiper" as in the case of a potentiometer or "switches" as may be with a discrete stepped attenuator. The key components in the Lightspeed Attenuator are Silonex NSL-32SR2 Optocouplers (PDF - 34kB). The optocoupler device is a sealed unit which consists of a high performance LED that shines on a light dependent resistor (LDR).

It is believed that any light weight contacts (switches and especially pots and their wipers) have a diode rectification effect on the AC music signal, trying to rectify it which is very bad. The Lightspeed Attenuator (LDR) system totally addresses is diode rectification effect. This is why it is so transparent and totally honest to the source, not adding any colorations or distortions to the source, it is just like being able to plug your cd players fixed output directly into your poweramp yet having control over the volume.

Yes, I am looking for volume pot replacement in ZMA. And now I find Light Speed Passive Preamp and I plan to use it as my pre-amp. When I get and play with it, I will make a review of it.

Below is link for information of Light Speed Attenuator.

http://theartofsound.net/forum/showthread.php?9087-Lighter-Note-LDR-attenuator
http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/fr.pl?aamps&1276356977
http://electra-fidelity.squarespace.com/lightspeed-attenuator/
http://killerdac.com/forum/index.php?topic=10.0
http://forums.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/fr.pl?aamps&1248137240&read&keyw&zzgood+cd+pl...

However Light Speed Attenuator preamp must be matched to your system whose condition is :
If I could just chime in here about the PRAT factor with the Lightspeed Attenuator. If you have a source (cdp or phono stage) that is less than 100ohms output impedance and power amps that are more than 50kohm (100kohm or more input even better) your PRAT factor if anything will be better than anything you've heard, it gives the impression that your listening to something like the old DBX units (Dynamic Range Enhancer) without all the pitfalls of those things.
If it is not matching, it provides less dynamic, less PRAT and thin sound.

However there is other preamp which can solve this problem.
http://www.hifiwigwam.com/showthread.php?64332-Hornshoppe-The-Truth-Pre
http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/fr.pl?aamps&1286153678&read&keyw&zztru...

Go back to Volume pot in ZMA, if your system allow you to adjust volume in PreAmp or Source player. Then I highly recommend to rewire your signal wire of ZMA to bypass Volume pot, not connected to volume pot any more. (It is not the same as you turn volume pot to maximum.)

Or Steve should provide option for customer to select "No Volume Pot" for customer who has PreAmp or Volume control in CD player. The sound quality of ZMA without volume pot is much better than ZMA with volume pot in term of much better ultimate transparency and ultra fine details.
Back to top
« Last Edit: 09/25/14 at 09:43:32 by vyokyong »  

IMG_7105_-_Copy2.jpg

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #58 - 09/25/14 at 05:10:29
 
Back to top
 
 

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #59 - 09/26/14 at 03:40:56
 
LESS IS MORE or KISS.

I did a home run again.
As you know, I use Zen Switching Box before connected to ZMA. There are resistors at out put audio signal path inside zen switching box. I did rewire audio signal path to connect directly to RCA female jack, not pass resistor any more.

It seems as another veil between me and the musicians have been removed again.
Attacks on each note are clearer and more distinct. Music sounds fresh and alive.
Some small details that seemed to be smeared together before can now be clearly heard, if the recording allows it. Sense of front to back is more increased.

Previously, the stock resistors have been replaced by Vishay foil "Nake" resistors. It is much more  transparent. But this time the Vishay resistors have been removed out and connect directly to RCA female jack. No resistor (in audio signal path) is the best. Veil has been removed to be crystal clear status.

Before mod. I cannot imagine that I can achieve to this level of CLARITY, TRANSPARENCY, DYNAMIC (IMMEDIACY) and TRIMBRE.

Quote : from Audiogon;

09-15-11: Marqmike
Hey, hey , hey guys. I personally like the XXXX to anything I have ever heard, which you can see most of that is on my previous posts. I have experience with real musicians in real space and real time. And from that perspective I find on most non-musician friends and others systems there is to much concern with the 3d thing and spacial ques, it is out of proportion to what I find in real space. And I feel it effects the tonal response of the whole recording and the timber of the instruments and voices. I say sure you can hear a fly land on the back wall of the auditorium but that is not what I listen to a recording for. But the truth is we all live on our own worlds when it comes to music and its reproduction. And that is fine and good.

09-15-11: Pubul57

Marqmike, I too find that much of what we look for in recorded music through our systems regarding 3D, imaging, spacial cues, etc. is simply not there in live perfomance, or at least far less than we seek it in our systems. What live music brings that no stereo system I've heard truly replicates is timbre and dynamics - every time I go listen to unamplified live jazz, I go home and remind myself to accept that while I love my system and listening to music on it, it is not the same as live (really, how could it be?) but a facsimile.

I agree with both opinions. My experience is that every time of mod and resulting in better transparency, clarity and trimbre. The scale of vocal voice and music instruments are bigger, less pin point. When the scale is small or pin point, the more exact location of singer and music instruments in 3D space. So that I feel trade off a little bit with 3D image with bigger scale of sources' sound and trimbre. But it is more close to lifelike or real as listen to live concert, particularly  un-amplified live music.

My observation is that it may be nowadays we are in the home theater surround sound era. We like to pin point location of source sound. And all Hi Fi equipments now are trying to win consumer by 3D image or location pin point of source sound. The Hi Fi magazine reviewers are always describe how excellent 3D image is this Hi Fi equipment to make consumer inspire! But there is trade off  and be more far away from lifelike music as real or actual size scale of source ( not pin point), trimbre and immediacy or dynamic ( Music notes sound is happened with  immediately ease). It is like a lot retouch digital picture which look perfect beautiful but does not have soul or feel natural.

Or we have to ask ourselves that what we want to pursue?

Current audiophile : 3D image, pin point location, layers of singer and music instruments, spacial cues, high is very extended and very details, full bass impact, etc.  

Lifelike concert or real music with soul!  I feel like music is played in my room. The source sound is real size scale, immediacy and full of details of trimbre.

I highly recommend whom is using zen switching box to rewire and bypassing resistors, no resistors in out put audio signal path in zen switching box.

I forgot to inform that after removing out of resistors in zen switching box, my ZMA is louder 2-3 dB at the same volume control (of my Accuphase DP77).
Back to top
« Last Edit: 09/26/14 at 04:11:49 by vyokyong »  

photo_1_007.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #60 - 09/27/14 at 04:11:51
 
CD (PCM) vs SACD (DSD).

After mod of my ZMA and zen switching box which provides ultra high definition resolution (4K UHD). Then I am eager to test between CD vs DSD. Can DSD provide superb sound quality if the Hi Fi system is on top-notch?

I have Patricia Barber Modern Cool by Mobile Fidelity SACD and CD. And my Accuphase DP77 player can play both CD and SACD. To play both format by Accuphase should be fair comparison. However It should be noted that Accuphase player converts DSD to PCM first and go to DAC. It is not decode DSD directly.

Previous mod, I still like CD rather than SACD even though SACD provides more details and resolution than CD. But CD is more organic and dynamic rhythm is more involving. SACD is like announcer who speaks with trying correct spelling of essence too much. It is not natural or lively speaking.  It is like SACD try to emphasize or raise sound details and trimbre up too much.

After mod, I play SACD first. The sound details and trimbre is heard more clearly. But I still feel not involving. The feeling of synthesis, not natural is more obvious than before. Then I switch to play CD of same song track. It confirms my feeling that I still prefer CD more than SACD or DSD. But this time, CD can provide sound details and trimbre very close to SACD or DSD than before. It is not lack of sound details and trimbre. But it is more organic or involving. I played till mid night and wished want to play more. But I had to stop and went to bed yesterday. Because I have to go to work today.

If Hi Fi system is in top-notch level. In my opinion, CD or PCM format can provides very excellent sound quality. There is no need to search for SACD or DSD format. I am happy with CD or PCM format and willing to ignore DSD or SACD.
Back to top
« Last Edit: 09/27/14 at 04:16:40 by vyokyong »  

IMG_7880.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
Lon
Seasoned Member
****


"Love without
guts is
worthless!"
Philip K. D*ck

Posts: 13032
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #61 - 09/27/14 at 12:12:20
 
Interesting. I trust this conclusion has come from more than just one SACD hybrid disc. Smiley

I have a different opinion and this after having a half dozen SACD players in my system. Some really did not present SACD in a fashion well enough to really wow in comparison to the best Redbook playback of the same mastering. As I've never had a way to stream the DSD to a great DAC to decode a great DAC such as the PS Audios I've had/have allow Redbook to shine so well that SACD did not seem that big a deal.

(But then again I would have thought that your Accuphase player would be among those allowing SACD to shine in this manner, so prehpas there are other differences that have caused our differing opinions. I"m not a fan of Barber and don't have that disc to compare the different masterings, CD and SACD.)

BUT with a very good SACD player (at the moment I have the 100th Anniversary Denon player, a great bang for buck unit, and an Ayre player) there is something to the hi-res nature of the SACD playback that I find superior by a few hairs to the best Redbook playback I have (from my PS Audio DirectStream DAC). So though I do not run around purchasing SACDs willy nilly, I do buy classical ones often enough, and have been buying SACDs of albums I've treasured for years such as the Mobile Fidelity remasters of Miles Davis and Bob Dylan releases

With the right player I've found SACD especially enjoyable with classical music. Sting texture and tone can be amazing and it handles the dynamics and textures of orchestra pieces with a greater ease.

So I can see why many may choose to ignore SACD, I'm not among them. I've got a slowly growing collection.
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 09/27/14 at 12:14:26 by Lon »  

HR-1,ZP3,ZTPRE,Torii MkIII,ZBIT,ZROCK2,Taboo MkIV;PS Audio:Soloist SE,DMP+DSD,P10,PowerBases,AC-12 pcs,Mapleshade:Dbl Helix+,SamsonV2+V3;CambrAudi CXU;Rega RP3,TTPSU,Groovetracer upgrades,Exact2;VooDoo Cremona +Amati,Iso-Pods;MD90-T SE tuner,Oppo PM-1,Audeze LCD-2
  IP Logged
beowulf
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 1298
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #62 - 09/28/14 at 05:20:18
 
I have to say I'm 50/50 right now and although I don't have a DS to compare, I do have about 20 or so DSD rips from SACD and IMO about half of them are fairly flat and lack dynamics and not as good as Redbook.  I actually like the 96/192 24 bit hi-res versions I've been getting from HDTracks even better than most of the DSD and Redbook titles I have.  That said, there are some DSD titles that are just stunning, so I'm totally aware of their potential, it has been just hit and miss for me.
Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
Lonely Raven
Seasoned Member
****


Jack of all Trades,
Master of None

Posts: 2964
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #63 - 09/28/14 at 16:48:51
 

Paul at PS Audio tried to address this (I and others brought this up more than a few times). PCM seems to have a digital edge to it that can enhance the music. DSD being closer to analog doesn't get this edge if it doesn't go through a PCM conversion anywhere in the chain. But then, DSD also doesn't get the compression that's inherent in vinyl due to its inherent lower dynamic range. So while it's more analog, it's still not like vinyl - it's more like tape - which I think is why they keep pushing the sample rate (4XDSD for example)...I think it's to get more density, to be more tape like.

Back to top
 
 
WWW Lonely Raven   IP Logged
beowulf
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 1298
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #64 - 09/29/14 at 05:17:28
 
Interesting observations, it would seem that is the effect I'm having and I'm not sure I enjoy them as much.  A majority that I have just seem dull and lifeless and my feet aren't tapping the same way they do when I play HDTracks and Vinyl (not all HDTracks are great either though, but I find myself happier overall in comparison).
Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
Lonely Raven
Seasoned Member
****


Jack of all Trades,
Master of None

Posts: 2964
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #65 - 09/29/14 at 15:53:22
 

Yeah, I absolutely feel the same way. I bought a bunch of Blue Coast recordings, and some from Opus3, all DSD64 or better. I love Cookies recordings at Blue Coast, she goes direct to DSD, and sometimes bounces off tape to warm up the sound. But it does sound a little flat to me. Opus3, I'm not sure what they are doing, but they are hands down the best DSD recordings I've come across. I was just talking to Steve about this, he agrees and has been buying their Reel to Reels.

That said, the latest update from PS Audio on the DirectStream seems to have fixed some of this flatness, plus I'm playing SACD direct from the ISO file, and I swear there is an improvement there as well.

I'll send you one of the sample tracks I have from Opus3 and you see if you see the same thing.
Back to top
 
 
WWW Lonely Raven   IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #66 - 09/30/14 at 14:36:41
 
Here is the interesting article to read about digital audio.
http://killerdac.com/forum/index.php/topic,360.0.html

Conclusion :  Redbook standards or CD (16 bits) format has dynamic range of 96 dB which is enough for any kind of music. The most demand of dynamic is orchestra music. Its dynamic range is only 60 dB. The hi resolution music of 24 bits and 32 bits have no benefits of dynamics for DAC. Their benefits of dynamic are in ADC section of music mixing process.
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 09/30/14 at 15:37:41 by vyokyong »  

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #67 - 10/02/14 at 03:38:33
 
Read from below link of ADC/DAC losses topic from KillerDAC forum.

http://killerdac.com/forum/index.php/topic,2820.0.html

"digital just lacks a certain weight and body that isn't there.  "

As my understanding is that

Bit depth (16 bits, 24 bits and 32 bits) is related to dynamics headroom (from quietest note to loudest note).

Frequency (44.1 MHz, 48 MHz, 88 MHz, 96 MHz, 192 MHz and 384 MHz) is related to resolution or details of music.

But there is no other unit or term to relate or measure of sound WEIGHT and BODY of music recording.

I assume that the more high frequency, the more details of music record but it trades off for MUSIC WEIGHT and BODY. Just like some one hit drum. Slow frequency hits of drum, Weight and body of drum sound is hear clearly. The more high frequency hits of drum, weight and body of drum sound is more thinner. (In condition of same energy or power usage). I think that DAC Chip has limit current out put and circuit power supply to DAC Chip has limit current to supply. The result of oversampling 2X,  4X will result in higher definition (resolution) but lesser of body and weight (than analog recording).

(Normally 2X and 4X oversampling is related to digital filter wall to get rid of noise).

Just my two cents! To think out of box to explain that DSD is more lack of sound weight and body than Redbook standard because DSD uses more higher sampling rate to get more accuracy of sound frequency! But not considering of Sound weight and body.

DSD uses pulse-density modulation encoding—a technology to store audio signals on digital storage media that are used for the SACD. The signal is stored as delta-sigma modulated digital audio; a sequence of single-bit values at a sampling rate of 2.8224 MHz (64 times the CD Audio sampling rate of 44.1 kHz, but only at 1⁄32768 of its 16-bit resolution). Noise shaping occurs by use of the 64-times oversampled signal to reduce noise/distortion caused by the inaccuracy of quantization of the audio signal to a single bit.


Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 10/02/14 at 03:49:05 by vyokyong »  

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #68 - 10/02/14 at 04:00:21
 
DSD technique[edit]

Comparison with PCM.
SACD audio is stored in DSD, which differs from the conventional PCM used by the compact disc or conventional computer audio systems.

A DSD recorder uses sigma-delta modulation. DSD is 1-bit, has a sampling rate of 2.8224 MHz. The output from a DSD recorder is a bitstream. The long-term average of this signal is proportional to the original signal. DSD makes use of noise shaping techniques in order to push quantization noise up to inaudible ultrasonic frequencies. In principle, the retention of the bitstream in DSD allows the SACD player to use a basic (one-bit) DAC design which incorporates a low-order analog filter. The SACD format is capable of delivering a dynamic range of 120 dB from 20 Hz to 20 kHz and an extended frequency response up to 100 kHz, although most currently available players list an upper limit of 80–90 kHz and 20 kHz is the upper limit of human hearing.

The process of creating a DSD signal is conceptually similar to taking a one-bit delta-sigma analog-to-digital (A/D) converter and removing the decimator, which converts the 1-bit bitstream into multibit PCM. Instead, the 1-bit signal is recorded directly and in theory only requires a lowpass filter to reconstruct the original analog waveform. In reality it is a little more complex, and the analogy is incomplete in that 1-bit sigma-delta converters are these days rather unusual, one reason being that a one-bit signal cannot be dithered properly: most modern sigma-delta converters are multibit.

Because of the nature of sigma-delta converters, one cannot make a direct comparison between DSD and PCM. An approximation is possible, though, and would place DSD in some aspects comparable to a PCM format that has a bit depth of 20 bits and a sampling frequency of 96 kHz.[22] PCM sampled at 24 bits provides a (theoretical) additional 24 dB of dynamic range.

Because it has been extremely difficult to carry out DSP operations (for example performing EQ, balance, panning and other changes in the digital domain) in a one-bit environment, and because of the prevalence of studio equipment such as Pro Tools, which is solely PCM-based, the vast majority of SACDs—especially rock and contemporary music which rely on multitrack techniques—are in fact mixed in PCM (or mixed analog and recorded on PCM recorders) and then converted to DSD for SACD mastering.

To address some of these issues, a new studio format has been developed, usually referred to as "DSD-wide", which retains the high sample rate of standard DSD, but uses an 8-bit, rather than single-bit digital word length, yet still relies heavily on the noise shaping principle. It becomes almost the same as PCM—and is sometimes disparagingly referred to as "PCM-narrow"—but has the added benefit of making DSP operations in the studio a great deal more practical. The main difference is that "DSD-wide" still retains 2.8224 MHz (64Fs) sampling frequency while the highest frequency in which PCM is being edited is 352.8 kHz (8Fs). The "DSD-wide" signal is down-converted to regular DSD for SACD mastering. As a result of this technique and other developments there are now a few digital audio workstations (DAWs) that operate, or can operate, in the DSD domain, notably Pyramix and some SADiE systems.

Another format for DSD editing is Digital eXtreme Definition (DXD), a PCM format with 24-bit resolution sampled at 352.8 kHz (or alternatively 384 kHz).

Note that high-resolution PCM (DVD-Audio, HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc) and DSD (SACD) may still technically differ at high frequencies. A reconstruction filter is typically used in PCM decoding systems, much the same way that bandwidth-limiting filters are normally used in PCM encoding systems. Any error or unwanted artifact introduced by such filters will typically affect the end-result. A claimed advantage of DSD is that product designers commonly choose to have no filtering, or modest filtering. Instead DSD leads to constant high levels of noise at these frequencies. The dynamic range of DSD decreases quickly at frequencies over 20 kHz due to the use of strong noise shaping techniques which push the noise out of the audio band resulting in a rising noise floor just above 20 kHz. The dynamic range of PCM, on the other hand, is the same at all frequencies. However, almost all present-day DAC chips employ some kind of sigma-delta conversion of PCM files that results in the same noise spectrum as DSD signals. All SACD players employ an optional low-pass filter set at 50 kHz for compatibility and safety reasons, suitable for situations where amplifiers or loudspeakers cannot deliver an undistorted output if noise above 50 kHz is present in the signal.
Back to top
 

480px-PCM-vs-DSD_svg.png

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #69 - 10/03/14 at 05:28:45
 
Mod by changing Signal Capacitor coupling from V-caps TFTF to be Duelund Cu CAST PIO.

In my ZMA, there are 2 units of V-caps TFTF 0.1 uF 600 VDC, 1 unit of Jupiter HT 0.1 uF 600 VDC and 1 unit of Jupiter HT 0.022 uF 600 VDC (Aluminum foil). Two units of V-cap at the second row are replaced first by Duelund Cu CAST PIO 0.1 uF 630 VDC (MRSP USD 595.95, 70% discount, net price is USD 184.95)

Duelund Cu CAST PIO caps is expensive but its reputation is one of the best caps in market. Many DIYers praise it very much after installing them.

http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/fr.pl?ymisc&1343440445&openflup&47&...

However if Duelund Cu CAST PIO cap is too expensive, there is alternative cap. That is Jupiter HT Copper foil 0.1 uF 600 VDC @USD 55 which is 70% less than Duelund Cu CAST PIO cap. And the same person Grannyring praises of Jupiter HT copper cap. He replaces Duelund Cu CAST PIO cap (which was installed in year 2012) in his preamp to be Jupiter HT copper foil cap later in year 2014. The Jupiter HT copper foil cap just launch in July 2014.

Quote : 09-12-14: Grannyring
Done that already and the Jupiters are better in the Dude. No kidding. I and several others have done it and love the results.
Grannyring  (System | Reviews | Threads | Answers | This Thread)

http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/fr.pl?vdone&1409683270&openflup&13&4#1...

If I knew in advance, I may change to Jupiter HT copper foil cap instead. But I have already bought Duelund Cu CAST PIO caps in June.


Back to top
« Last Edit: 10/03/14 at 05:31:39 by vyokyong »  

IMG_7735.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #70 - 10/04/14 at 00:35:23
 
To replace cap in ZMA, the available installed space must be considered carefully and well plan in advance. Duelund Cast PIO cap size is bigger than V-cap. And if Jupiter copper foil cap is same size as Jupiter HT Beewax cap. Then it is easier to replace by Jupiter copper foil cap.

More review of Jupiter copper foil cap.
http://www.dhtrob.com/impressies/jupiter_copperfoil.php

Comparison between Jupiter copper foil cap and Duelund PIO cap.
http://www.enjoythemusic.com/diy/0514/jupiter_copper_foil_paper_wax_capacitor.ht...

http://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=124972.20

Lampizator web site confirm that Jupiter copper foil cap share similar same signature sound of Duelund CASt PIO cap. It is a good news since Jupiter copper foil price is 70% percent less than Duelund PIO cap.
http://www.lampizator.eu/newdac/lampizator/Capacitors.html

Steve Deckert from Decware is one in the team who fine tuning the sound of Jupiter copper foil cap.
http://jupitercondenser.com
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 10/04/14 at 00:49:11 by vyokyong »  

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #71 - 10/06/14 at 04:44:40
 
Because Duelund CAST PIO cap size is bigger than V-cap. And it is radial type, not axial type as V-cap. Then installing place of Duelund CAST PIO caps are different from V-Caps. And Duelund CAST PIO caps are vertical installed.

The caps are film cap so that there is no pole (positive and negative pole for installing). But there is direction of installing to get better sound. The inner lead out wire from Duelund CAST PIO cap to follow point of installed of red lead out wire of V-Cap. And the outer lead out wire of Duelund CAST PIO cap to follow point of installed of green lead out wire of V-Cap.  

I did first pair of Duelund CAST PIO cap installed (second row) as in the picture.
Back to top
 

IMG_7757.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #72 - 10/06/14 at 04:50:45
 
The base of Duelund CAST PIO caps are placed with

Soundcoat damping materials 2 layers to have vibration isolation.
Still points ERS sheet to prevent EMI and RMI.


Back to top
 

IMG_7754.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
Lonely Raven
Seasoned Member
****


Jack of all Trades,
Master of None

Posts: 2964
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #73 - 10/06/14 at 14:25:20
 

I was going to ask if you siliconed in the new caps, but I see you used damping material. That seems clever.

Do you feel the ERS Sheet helps at all?

I'm really enjoying watching all the changes you've made, but I question what actually works, and what is money thrown to good feelings only.

Back to top
 
 
WWW Lonely Raven   IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #74 - 10/06/14 at 15:01:03
 
Hi Lonely Raven,

My goal of ZMA is that Mod ZMA will be my next 10 year Amp. I will do the best mod at one shot. This is my style as I bought MIT Oracle IC and speaker cable and used for 10 years. I have never bought and keep upgrade IC and speaker cables. I think that always upgrading is more expansive in long run. And I am in country that import duty is high and used market price is not good. This is just my goal and style.

For Soundcoat damping materials, I have done place over cone points of Avalon speakers and it has impacted to sonic improvement of Avalon speaker a lot. The material use is few for Duelund caps. And this is part left from speaker usage. And also I did place Soundcoat under my Mac Mini which improves sonic of Mac mini a lot. I highly recommend and I think that it is much cheaper than still points cones.

For ERS sheet, I have used it to cover both Off Ramp 5 USB SPDIF converter and Mac mini. It has a big impact to sound improvement of both equipments. But you have to have some space (1 inch) between ESR sheet and equipment so that the sound is open. If not or no space between ERS and equipment, the sound will not be open and feel congest.

For Duelund cap, I don't know whether ERS will be effective or not. But it is one shot, if I don't do this time, there is no next time. And it use very small piece of ERS.

I highly recommend both materials. It is not expensive to tweak of all your Hi Fi system. But it needs your creative idea to try and see the result.
Back to top
« Last Edit: 10/07/14 at 02:21:47 by vyokyong »  

image_021.jpg

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #75 - 10/06/14 at 17:29:08
 
Soundcoat damping material is used on top of Apex cones.
Back to top
 

image_022.jpg

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #76 - 10/07/14 at 03:07:51
 
Before capacitors replacing, I though that the sonic was very excellent already and I liked very much. I should stop mod and enjoyed it. However Duelund caps are already bought so that the show must go on.

Sonic improvement of Duelund CAST PIO pair caps in the second row caps, replacing pair of V-Caps TFTF.

First 30 minutes of listening, its sonic is slow pace and bloated bass. Someone will be disappointed at this initial 30 minutes. But for me, it is a good sign because I have same experience with XLO Purple Rush power cable cord whose sonic signature excellent in mid, natural vocal sound. The XLO Purple Rush power cord is started of 1-2 hours with same sonic of slow pace, dull and bloated bass. But after 20 hours, its sonic transforms to fast pace, mush more high extended, sweet or lush mid range, very well body and weight with excellent bass control and articulation. It becomes my present best power cord.

After 20 hours, its sonic improvement is very very excellent in any respects of Hi Fi sound description.
The obvious improvement is that there is no trade off between two opposite spectrum properties that you have to choose, for example more warm side or lean, analytic side. Its sonic is excel in both sides and balance very well in both warm side and analytic (high resolution) side. It provides best of both worlds or sides. The tonal balance is extremely neutral, especially audible with good recordings of acoustic instruments and the human voice.

In high-end, there is no any harsh at all and provide extremely in high resolution, crystal clear. V-cap provide very high resolution but in thin-fast sound while Duelund provide same high resolution with body, not thin sound. The cymbal sound is more real from Duelund cap.
In mid, this is Duelund's signature excellent of sweet mid vocal, detail and natural present.
In low end, bass is well control together, articulate with weight and attack. I feel that my speaker woofer is 50% bigger. Plucked acoustic bass, for example, was no longer just a bass sound - it had form and shape with natural decay.
Harmonic and micro-details is excellent.
Trimbre and Airy is excellent while V-cap is average in this area.
Sound stage is wide, depth and layers. This is one of its strong sonic signature which other caps cannot compete with.
Next up is separation. I am not just talking about separation between channels. I am talking about separation between instruments. This allows low-level detail to be heard through other louder parts of the music - allowing you to much more easily follow individual instruments through a complex passage.
But what I like most is that it provides more body and weight, image size is real size together with weight and attack bass. It makes very lifelike concert sound.

I agree with this review between Duelund CAST PIO cap versus V-Cap.
http://www.enjoythemusic.com/diy/0314/duelund_cast_pio_copper_capacitor.htm  

The result of previous mod is like sound tone tuning to be more warm or more analytic, better transparency and clarity, more extend in both top and low end, etc. But your sonic characteristic is not changed, it is only better and more. But the sonic from mod of Caps changing is totally change in its characteristic to a new characteristic or DNA changing. The effect is much much more than tube rolling. For me, I just recommend to use the best caps as your budget allow. At present, there are;
Duelund CAST PIO caps
Jupiter Copper foil cap.

I feel very happy that I replace V-cap TFTF with Duelund CAST PIO caps. Duelund CAST PIO caps has transformed my ZMA in ways that must be heard to be understood. (much much much better than V-Cap TFTF).
Back to top
 
 

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #77 - 10/08/14 at 02:20:47
 
Next is replacing remaining caps of Jupiter HT Beeswax 0.1 uF 600 VDC and Jupiter HT Beeswax 0.022 uF 600 VDC with Duelund CAST PIO 0.1 uF 630 VDC and Jensen Silver Foil 0.022 uF 630 VDC respectively.

It is more difficult than previous caps replacement because Duelund cap size is much bigger than Jupiter cap. And Jensen Silver Foil cap size is bigger than Jupiter Beeswax cap. The space is very limited.

Back to top
 

IMG_7923.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #78 - 10/08/14 at 02:21:49
 
More picture
Back to top
 

IMG_7924.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
JD
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 442
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #79 - 10/08/14 at 12:22:06
 
Vyokyong,

Best of luck on your adventure for the best sound possible, you are certainly making the amp your own. Even though I don't own the same amp it's fun to follow.

JD
Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #80 - 10/09/14 at 03:11:37
 
Thanks JD,

Beginning of year 2014, my friend bought Wilson Audio Alexia speakers and VTL Siegfried Series I Reference Monoblock Amp. I went to listen to his new HiFi system. From this listening event, it drives me to improve my Hi Fi system. However I did not have huge budget as him to achieve sonic quality as his Hi Fi system.

I did research and read a lot forum on line. One Amp company made me interested was Decware Zen Amp. And there was new Amp launch Zen Mystery Amp. That was very good timing and I decided to buy Zen Mystery Amp. Now I have an excellent amp in my budget. The only way to improve sonic quality of my Amp is to modify it with boutique or exotic parts or components. My sonic reference now is my friend's Wilson Audio and VTL amp Hi Fi system. The more closer to my friend system, the more happier I am.

I think that if you don't have huge budget to buy top brand amp, there is only one method to achieve same sonic quality with much less budget or one fourth of top brand budget is Amp modification.
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 10/09/14 at 03:12:32 by vyokyong »  

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #81 - 10/10/14 at 02:34:55
 
What is sonic improvement from replacing Jupiter caps with Duelund cap and Jensen silver foil cap?

First 5 minutes of listening, the sonic shifts toward high a lot, more analytic sound. It may be caused by Jensen Silver foil cap. But the more long time listening, its sonic is open more and transform to neutral sound, not analytic sound while keeps high frequency in better crystal clarity and sparkling than before.

After 20 hour burn in, the sonic characteristic becomes same as previous replacing of 4 units of Duelund caps to V-cap TFTF. But its sonic is double dense and high end freq is more sparking, crystal clarity which is very satisfy improvement.

The sound stage dept is also obvious more expanding and much better layering. Instruments separation is obvious improve. Transparency and Clarity is better.

Bass weight, attack and transient is much better. I feel that my speakers have more one 8" woofer added!

Mid range, particularly female vocal is  improved from excellent to be top notch excellent. It adds a more realistic and invigorating sense to the mids and more low dynamics. It is a renown of Duelund cap "MID RANGE TO DIE FOR"

Low level details, particularly in lower mid to low end region is another excellent which is improved from excellent to extra excellent.

Summarize:

The 4 new caps of Duelund cap and Jensen silver foil cap are more synergy with previous 4 Duelund cap (better than 4 Jupiter caps). It provides sonic signature of Duelund cap more shine through its full potential, resulting in more dense sound like double. And with help of Jensen Silver foil cap to fine tune more in high end to be crystal clarity and sparkling. It helps a lot to make sonic more life live, fresh and exciting PRAT.

If you want to replace only 4 lower row of caps for budget of 4xUSD 185, total of USD 740. That is excellent sonic improvement already. (or using Jupiter Copper foil cap instead 4x USD 55, total of USD 200 which is much cheaper. And it get praise as same level as Duelund cap).

But if you ask me that it is worth to replace all 8 stock caps or not? I will definitely say "YES". They improves ZMA sonic to next level (double dense sound) of truly sound signature of Duelund caps. (Total budget of USD 1,400) (or Jupiter Copper foil cap, total budget of USD 396 which is much cheaper. But I don't have experience with Jupiter Copper foil cap yet so that I cannot confirm).
It is not that I give psychology reason to satisfy myself for what I pay a lot of money to Duelund caps. If I don't buy Duelund cap before Jupiter copper foil cap launch. I definitely buy Jupiter copper foil cap and use rest of my money to spend in other areas or buy more music files. I confirm that sonic improvement is worth to spend of USD 1,400 caps replacing. I am still exciting to report of my mod ZMA sonic improvement!

MOD PACKAGE 2 cost is USD 1,400. Total cost of MOD is USD 1,400 (package 2) + USD 1,048 (package 1) = USD 2,448 which is 50% of ZMA.

If comparing cap changing to tube changing, IMO cap changing has 2-3 times more impact to sonic improvement than tube rolling. I will do cap changing first priority than tube rolling. Tube rolling should be in final stage to fine tuning sonic tone to your taste.

New mod ZMA with Duelund caps's sonic is totally different from stock ZMA. It transform excellent sonic of ZMA to be superb excellent sonic of ZMA with different sonic characteristic. Its sonic characteristic is moved toward close to Wilson Audio/VTL system which I heard in my friend system. SOUND BIG (sound stage, instrument image scale), BOLD (dense sound, like you sit at first row in front of performance stage), EXCITE (bass attack, transient, slam and low dynamics) and DELICACY (smooth, liquid and details).

Remark : Duelund cap just launch new cap. A world’s first – the Duelund silver/copper hybrid capacitor. USD 312 each for 0.1 uF 630 VDC. This cap will be my next project of Audio Note DAC 3.1 fully Mod because it has only 2 caps in signal path.

Next is replacing internal signal cable wire inside ZMA. My order Duelund hook up 2 wire has just been arrived.
Back to top
 

Duelund_CuAg.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #82 - 10/11/14 at 14:58:08
 
Since every time after mod, I have to install stock back to ZMA.  In case there is any thing wrong, I will not blow SR quantum fuse. Now I cannot  listen to stock fuse any more. The sound is bloated bass. But when install SR. quantum fuse back. The sound is neutral smooth, extend more top and bottom, no bloated bass. I cannot switch back to use stock fuse any more. It may be that after not using the stock fuse. It become like un-burn in fuse again.
Back to top
 
 

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #83 - 10/12/14 at 13:11:25
 
Replacing stock signal wire cable with Duelund hook up 2 wire (4 cables per channel).

The stock signal wire cable starts from outside bottom corner runs to center and turn up to stepped volume pot and then turn out to outside top corner. One channel cable distance is around 3 feet.

I decided to skip steeped volume pot (no volume pot in signal path). Then I reroute the signal wire start from outside bottom corner and go up to outside top corner. It is the shortage signal path and can be save for Duelund hook up 2 wire significantly. The new path length is only 1 feet per channel.

I plan to has hard wire connected with Light Speed attenuator passive preamp. Because there is no connector is better than any connector. And it saves connector cost of USD 116 WBT 0210 Ag RCA female jack and USD 245 WBT 0110-Ag RCA male plug (total USD 365).    
Back to top
« Last Edit: 10/12/14 at 13:43:03 by vyokyong »  

IMG_8177.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #84 - 10/12/14 at 13:44:06
 
More picture
Back to top
 

IMG_8178.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #85 - 10/12/14 at 13:45:59
 
4 wires are fitted to RCA hole exactly.
Back to top
 

IMG_8182.JPG

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #86 - 10/12/14 at 14:50:11
 
Picture shows stock signal wire cable route. (before mod)
Back to top
« Last Edit: 10/12/14 at 14:54:01 by vyokyong »  

IMG_7084_-_Copy-2.jpg

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
will
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 1832
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #87 - 10/12/14 at 19:48:07
 
vyokyong,

Thanks for taking the time to tell us about your adventure. I am really enjoying it.

Also, you mention pretty impressive discounts for parts. Can you point to some suppliers you have chosen?

Will
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 10/12/14 at 19:53:37 by will »  

PSA P5/modified Brickwall/Shunyata Defender/more; MacMini/Audirvana>Jitterbug/Regen> modified Gustard x20pro DAC; DIY + Pi Audio PCs; DIY ICs + USB; Decware-Jupiter CSP3, Torii MKIV, HR1-all modified; DIY Speaker Cables; feet-Madscientist, Archie's, isocups, DIY
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #88 - 10/12/14 at 23:57:02
 
Thanks Will,

All components are ordered from Parts Connexion.
http://www.partsconnexion.com
You can ask for special discount if your order is high value. In my case I got 20%discount of all items. The items which were 40%-50% discounts, were ordered in special promotion of that promotion month. I think that you can try to ask for same discount. The service is very good and very positive response.

Thanks for your enjoy reading.
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 10/13/14 at 00:04:26 by vyokyong »  

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
will
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 1832
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #89 - 10/13/14 at 00:06:06
 
vyokyong,

Thank you for the tip. I buy most from partsconnnexion always watching the sales. Some sale items are amazing deals! I have an order in with them now for wire and after reading your recent posts, added some soundcoat to check out.

Best to you!

Will
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 10/13/14 at 01:58:45 by will »  

PSA P5/modified Brickwall/Shunyata Defender/more; MacMini/Audirvana>Jitterbug/Regen> modified Gustard x20pro DAC; DIY + Pi Audio PCs; DIY ICs + USB; Decware-Jupiter CSP3, Torii MKIV, HR1-all modified; DIY Speaker Cables; feet-Madscientist, Archie's, isocups, DIY
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #90 - 10/13/14 at 03:55:21
 
More information of DSD vs PCM.

DSD vs PCM

Direct-Stream Digital is simply a 1-bit digital audio format that is based on the Sigma-Delta encoding/decoding architecture, and in practice is commonly referred to as a DSD recording/file.



Many are not aware though that whether they are employed in the processing of PCM or DSD signals, all modern DAC chips are actually based on the same basic Sigma-Delta architecture. In short, the only real question is whether we're sending a PCM or DSD signal to be decoded by a Sigma-Delta DAC.



With respect to PCM, a typical DAC applies multi-bit modulation for converting incoming data into a Sigma-Delta signal, and then that signal is processed by a following Low-Pass Filter stage. DSD decoding skips the Sigma-Delta conversion part of the process as the signal is directly decoded by the DAC, after which it is then processed by the Low-Pass Filter stage.



The differences between the two processes are relatively minimal and somewhat akin to comparing 10 dimes with a 1-dollar bill and trying to determine which is better. In one case where you have a coin purse, 10 dimes is better. In the case where you have a wallet though, the dollar bill is preferable. In either case, you still have the exact same amount of currency. Likewise in the case of PCM vs. DSD, you still have the same amount of data being processed. It's simply a matter of how the decoding hardware (DAC) was constructed as to which format is preferable.



Therefore, no matter how you view it DSD and PCM are nothing more than different ways of looking at the exact same thing. While there are differences, where and when the data is converted is of little practical importance with respect to the end result.



In fact, during the recording process virtually all DSD recording are first converted into PCM for mixing, equalization and other "artistic" processing. Upon completion, the data is then converted back to DSD format and manufactured into discs of "so called" DSD recordings (SACD) for distribution to consumers. In addition, the majority of DSD recordings are actually converted from original PCM masters. One should note that most all such back-and-forth conversion is performed via software – not hardware.



In similar fashion, during DSD playback from a PC both the uDAC3 and Icon DAC employ a computer-resident ASIO driver along with a special USB communications chip that is contained within the NuForce product. Together, each of these works in cooperation with the other for achieving real-time DSD to PCM conversion.



One should also note that the interestingly enough, the DSD format was originally developed to facilitate conversion to the 44.1kHz CD standard. Hence, the PCM equivalent of a 2.8Mhz DSD file would be manifest as an 88.2kHz file at 20-bit resolution. Compared to a 24-bit PCM file, DSD delivers a dynamic range that is actually 24dB less. Similarly, a "double" 5.6Mhz DSD file is the equivalent of a PCM file recorded at 176.4kHz and 20-bit resolution.

https://www.nuforce.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=40&Itemid=2...
Back to top
 
 

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #91 - 10/13/14 at 04:15:39
 
DSD vs. PCM Recording

World’s First Valid Comparison of PCM versus DSD

Recently the introduction of computers into home audio playback systems has made possible an unforeseen occurrence — the reintroduction of DSD, the modulation scheme used in Sony’s failed format of SACD from the turn of the millennium.

At the end of the 1990s as the CD patents were expiring, so was a huge revenue stream for Sony and Philips, developers of the Compact Disc format. Anxious to replace the CD with another exclusive format that would also generate licensing income, Sony and Philips tried again with the Super Audio Compact Disc or SACD. In the meantime, none of the other hardware manufacturers were having any of it. They all saw the explosive growth of DVD as the wave of the future and wanted to base any new format on DVD. Thus began one of the most bizarre chapters in the history of audio formats.

They say that the function of time is to prevent everything from happening all at once. For a while it seemed that time had broken. First the lossy compression of MP3 was developed to allow streaming of audio over low-bandwidth internet connections. This soon led to massive piracy (politely referred to as “file sharing”) and also made possible ultra-compact portable music players that could hold thousands of songs.

While Sony and Philips worked on the SACD, almost all of he other major audio manufacturers worked together to make a DVD disc specialized for music. By fudging the numbers to the point of mendacity Sony claimed an implied performance of 100 kHz bandwidth with a dynamic range of 120 dB. The only way to fight these totally misleading numbers was with numbers as big or bigger, which forced the DVD-Audio disc (as it came to be known) to be incompatible with the millions of DVD players that the early adopters had already purchased.

Then a teenaged Norwegian hacker broke the encryption method used in DVD. This put the fear of God into the record companies, who (almost certainly inaccurately) blamed “file sharing” on dwindling record sales. So Sony promised the record companies that SACDs would never be playable on computers, by building special transport mechanisms that modulated the width of the laser pits and bumps.

There was one thing that both camps agreed on completely, and which they were completely wrong about. Since surround sound had been such a hit for DVDs in home theater setups, they were sure that any future music format had to have surround sound to succeed. The iPod disproved that notion completely.

There was some overlap in the need for text for lyrics and or album cover art, which DVD-Audio gave more attention to than did SACD. But for the audiophile, only one question mattered. Which format sounded better?
It was a good question. Sony was doing fantastically well at the time and spent millions of dollars promoting their format, first by hiring top-level engineers Ed Meitner (now with EMM Labs) and Andreas Koch (now with Playback Design) to build the original machines used to make the original SACD recordings for release. This equipment was owned by Sony and loaned at no charge to any major studio that wanted to make a high-quality disc that was, in essence, copy-proof, and not able to be shared.

But the DVD-Audio camp was a committee of over a dozen large companies that could agree on very little. And so like the kitchen with far too many chefs, the product that emerged tried to be all things to all people and didn’t really resonate with any group. It was so complex to operate that it required a video monitor to navigate a confusing menu just to start the disc playing, let alone select a specific song.

Furthermore there was no single entity organizing the roll-out of DVD-Audio. The first releases were made by specialty audiophile labels that only spent a few hundred dollars on their recording hardware. When doing battle head-to-head against the juggernaut led by Sony, it was several years before any serious releases were made by any of the major labels.

But the problem was a classic chicken-and-egg problem. Nobody could sell enough software to realize a profit until a critical mass of hardware was sold. Neither format appealed to any group in large numbers and virtually every title ever made in either format lost money. So it wasn’t long before both formats withered on the vine.

Cut forward a half decade and the introduction of the asynchronous USB DAC by Gordon Rankin o Wavelength Audio suddenly made computer-based audio a real and still-growing market force that continues to gain momentum. Adding higher resolutions, such as 96/24 and 192/24 was trivial with this new hardware model. Many claimed that a $100 hard disk drive gave better playback fidelity than a $50,000 optical disc reader. With the growth of high speed internet lines, downloading large audio files became a reality so that one needn’t even leave the house to purchase new music.

Then in 2006 Sony made an unexpected move. Since SACD was a clear failure, they introduced a format called “DSD-Disc”, which was basically an SACD but playable in a computer by leaving out a layer of content protection. To my knowledge not a single one of these discs has been made or sold, but it did open the door to make and sell DSD downloads.

Ever since Sony’s early (convoluted and self-contradictory) marketing claims about the performance advantage of DSD, backed by the fact that their multi-million dollar budget was generally able to make better sounding products than the disorganized renegades that released DVD-Audio, many, many audiophiles have believed that DSD is inherently superior to PCM.

At the highest levels of audio engineers there has been little consensus as to which format sounds better, but most audiophiles have had first-hand experience with SACDs generally sounding better than DVD-Audio disc. So the prospect of being able to play downloadable DSD files via computer has led to a great deal of excitement, even controversy in the audiophile community. This article aims to sort out some of these claims.

All through 2013 a small infrastructure has been built and is slowly growing to record, distribute, and play downloadable DSD files. Now it is well known from a technical standpoint that there are many, many technical drawbacks of the DSD format when compared to PCM:

1) Standard DSD has low noise levels in the audio band. But at 20 kHz the noise rises sharply, leading to one of Sony’s more obviously amusing marketing contradictions. On the one hand they say that its extended bandwidth leads to a more natural presentation of high frequencies in the music, but on the other hand, they say that the high amounts of high frequency noise doesn’t matter because it is inaudible. I suppose the answer to that question depends on which marketing person you are speaking to on any particular day...

However it does cause serious problems when recording with the techniques that have become commonplace over the last fifty years or more. Any time that the signal is manipulated, more and more noise is added to the signal. These high-frequency noises can lead to damage of downstream equipment including amplifiers and loudspeakers. Therefore the official Sony specification (the “Scarlet Book”) specifies a third-order low-pass filter starting at 50 kHz, and the actual usable frequency response of SACD doesn’t extend much beyond 30 kHz.

To minimize this problem in professional gear, most DSD recordings today are made at double the rate of the DSD used on SACDs. This was modulated at 64x the CD frequency so is often called DSD-64, while the professional equipment running at double this rate is often called DSD-128. While this reduces some problems it introduces others, such as doubling of the file size and of course the download times and storage space required.

2) Since DSD is a one-bit format it is literally impossible to perform any signal manipulation at all — even a fade-out. So to perform recording in the modern methods where signals are mixed, EQ’d faded, reverb added, et cetera, all of the DSD signals must first be transcoded into PCM (or analog) signals, then the signal processing applied, and finally re-modulating the signal back into DSD, adding another layer of high-frequency noise.

3) Except for the microphones, amplifiers, and loudspeakers, all of the equipment in both the recording and playback chain must be replaced with new hardware that can accommodate this new form of modulation.

We can see that DSD has quite a few strikes against from the very start. So the only justification for it whatsoever would be for the hard-core audiophile, and this would only be in the case if DSD could provide audibly superior sound quality over PCM. So to settle this issue once and for all, for the first time available to the general public, Ayre has made available a series of recordings in both DSD and PCM that allow the listener to judge for him or herself if there are any audible advantages to DSD.

We have made three short (to avoid legal problems) “needle drop” recordings with the Ayre QA-9 Analog-to-Digital converter and posted them on our website. If you have the appropriate equipment, you can download them, play them back and judge for yourself which sounds better and by how much.

Please note that the signal path for the recordings were identical. The analog source comprised:

a) A DPS zero-clearance main bearing turntable.

b) A Benz LP-S moving coil cartridge.

c) A DPS unipivot tonearm with integral wiring from headshell to XLR connectors.

d) An Ayre P-5xe phono preamplifier.

e) A pair of balanced Ayre Signature series interconnects.

f) An Ayre QA-9 A/D converter.

g) Cardas Clear USB cable to Mac Book Pro

When switching between recording DSD or PCM, all of the internal hardware is identical. All of the analog circuitry, power supplies, digital circuitry, converter chips, PCB material , et cetera is 100% identical. The only difference in the algorithms used to process the raw data from the Arda AT1201 ADC chip (6 bits at 256 Fs) either into DSD or into PCM.

If you are fortunate enough to own either an Ayre DX-5-DSD or Ayre QB-9-DSD, then the same is true for the playback also. There are no differences in the signal path whatsoever except for the algorithms used in the ESS ES9016 Digital-to-Analog converter chip. There is no way to make a more fair comparison.

I think that those who take the time to compare the sound quality of the playback to be very illuminating, and should put to rest many of the myths that Sony created around DSD when they first were trying to recapture the revenues lost by the expiring CD patents.

http://www.ayre.com/insights_dsdvspcm.htm

Please send comments to:

http://www.ayre.com/contact_email.htm

with the words “Format Comparison” in the subject line. We will publish the more interesting ones and try to answer any questions that come up. Thank you for your interest.

Best regards,
Charles Hansen
Ayre Acoustics, Inc.

Thanks to all of the Ayre team, especially Ariel Brown, who wrote the algorithms, Ryan Berry who built the converters, and Alex Brinkman who made the recordings.

http://www.ayre.com/insights_dsdvspcm.htm
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 10/13/14 at 08:29:41 by vyokyong »  

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #92 - 10/13/14 at 09:17:18
 
Back to top
 
 

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #93 - 10/13/14 at 09:35:11
 
Back to top
 
 

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #94 - 10/13/14 at 10:03:02
 
Analog, DSD or PCM

First up was the analog tape. It sounded very good…warm and smooth. Although, we had to check that everything was working properly because it did sound somewhat colored and covered. Wayne’s tracks have a lot of air or open space in them so there was a noticeable noise floor and high frequency dullness (at least compared to the digital HD formats). The next format was the Sonoma system at DSD 64, which all agreed (including myself) sounded really great. The DSD produced a very clear sound and did sound fairly close to vinyl but with none of the surface noise. Peter McGrath of Wilson Audio and one of the best classical engineers on the planet, was very impressed and grinning during the DSD playback.

Brett switched over to the ProTools HD system for the final playback. He has a set of Mytek converters and they were certainly up to the task. The sound of the PCM equaled the DSD and for me, in that space, had the kind of ultrasonic sparkle that I’ve grown used to with my own tracks. The extreme high end opened up making the cymbals and brushes of the drum kit accurate and crisp.

The analog tape was definitely a notch down from the other two…I heard no one express otherwise. And the DSD and PCM were deemed to be pretty much equivalent with some preferring the DSD and others leaning towards the PCM. Of course, we didn’t do a blind test and there were different DACs involved but this was about good as one is likely to get when comparing these formats.

http://www.realhd-audio.com/?p=629
Back to top
 
 

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #95 - 10/13/14 at 15:02:47
 
According to stepped attenuator volume control which I skip or take out from signal path. If you want to keep in put impedance of 100K ohms of ZMA for impedance matching with source and preamp, you need to add metal film resistor value between 47K - 100K ohms connected between positive in put signal path and ground. This is an advice from Steve. But I have not done yet, I need to order resistors first.
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: 10/13/14 at 15:04:34 by vyokyong »  

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #96 - 10/14/14 at 03:47:06
 
Friday, 11 April 2014
ANALYSIS: A Comparison of DSD Encoders & Decoders (KORG AudioGate, JRiver MC, Weiss Saracon)

From what I see here, I'm quite happy that Saracon is used in most commercial releases I've come across for DSD-to-PCM conversion. Within the 20Hz to 20kHz audible spectrum, it does appear to be the best even though I highly doubt one could go wrong with any of these. Just remember that the steep low-pass filter in Saracon means there's nothing above ~40kHz and therefore no point buying a Saracon DSD converted file above 96kHz (88kHz is all that's needed).

Over the years, I've listen to original DSD and compared to PCM conversions at 24/88 using Saracon and AudioGate output level matched as best I could (using the TEAC UD-501, never tried formal ABX or blinding). IMO, it's tough to assess since you can't instantaneously switch from DSD to PCM. The PCM converted files sound good to me and I would not hesitate to archive the DSD64 library as 24/88. Whatever difference has always been subtle at best (despite claims from the DSD faithful that somehow DSD sounds much better). I suppose it's possible that different DAC devices could also sound different depending on PCM or DSD input.

http://archimago.blogspot.com/2014/04/analysis-comparison-of-dsd-encoders.html
Back to top
 

Noise.png

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #97 - 10/15/14 at 03:13:08
 
Sonic improvement after replacing stock signal wire cable with Duelund hook up wire 2 cable (4 cables per channel).

I confirm opinion of Lord Soth:
Silver cables have higher resolution and transparency.
They are not bright but the copper cables are warmer.
The copper cables can't pick up microdetails and have less dynamics.

And as I state previously that using Duelund hook up wire version 2 cable (4 cables per channel) makes your Hi Fi system transformed like 4K UHDTV in term of super microdetails, excellent transparency, great dynamics, sense of timing. great trimbre, full of low level details, hi-resolution of texture, more extended and more natural highs, more integrated and more details highs, wider and especially deeper sense of depth perspective, more nuance, more delicacy and bass is deep with texture and details, attack and slam.  

But the unique sound characteristic is "Immediacy, Ease, real image size, 3D depth sound stage and Neutral". These sonic character makes I feel real present of musicians are playing in front of mine in my room.

When I listen to live concert, I will not think that the live concert sound is analytically sound, lean sound. Or the sound is warm, round body, etc. In real live concert, there is no definition of lean versus warm sound. This is my meaning of neutral. And I respect Duelund product of capacitors and hook up wires. They are synergy together to provide these live life concert sound "Neutral". It is like its own signature sound.
It provides both excellent ends spectrum of sonic with excellent balance, no trade off or which end of spectrum to choose. It ticks in all criteria of excellent Hi Fi system.

Details vs Weight with Body.  It provides super details with weighted body, no thin sound.
Air vs Trimbre. It provides excellent air together with superb trimbre.
Lean vs Warm. There is no warm or lean, just right neutral.
Dynamics vs Forgiving(non aggressive and forward sound). It provides dynamic forgiving sound, no fatigue and no boring.
Transient vs Long note decay. The transients of high note and bass is exciting and beautiful long decay.
Round body and real image size vs 3D Holographic image. It is very live life present in my room. I can feel of each instrument space in 3D sound stage with image scale of real size, full of details with round edge body.

MY ZMA becomes new life of Super Saiyan as in Dragon Ball Z cartoon.

 
Back to top
« Last Edit: 10/15/14 at 09:39:33 by vyokyong »  

1002.jpg

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #98 - 10/15/14 at 04:34:16
 
More understanding of DSD. Why DSD is more like analog while PCM is a real digital, not analog.

PDM (DSD) is a BIT STREAM of pulses whose density is modulated by the signal level. There's no quantized value represented. On the other hand, PCM is a series of discrete quantized 2's compliment binary digital VALUES, like frames of a movie film.

PCM is a true quantized digital stand alone word representation of signal level values. Discreet digital level slices in time. It's the definition of digital in it's most rudimentary basic form

1-bit two level PDM (DSD) has no quantized weight. It's a modulation of pulse density in a bit stream, whose fundamental granularity is set by a clock rate, confused by the term "sample Rate". There are no samples, since there's no quantization. It's ANALOG, but because it has only two levels (states), it can be stored in a computer, just as with quantized digital data.

To make the DSD bit stream useful for processing, other than just retrieving it for playing, it needs to be re-modulated into a multi-bit form at the same clock rate (DSD-Wide), or converted into a true quantized value system, like PCM.

There really is no issue over absolute level reference in PDM (DSD). There are none, since there are no quantized values. To make the bit stream useful for D/A conversion, the reference level is simply the mid point between the two level extremes; just as in any capacitor coupled analog circuit. It's originated as part of the D/A conversion. That's why there's always a wandering DC offset, specified as not to exceed -50dBfrom maximum signal level.
Back to top
 

DSD.jpg

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
vyokyong
Seasoned Member
****




Posts: 169
Re: Ways to improve sound quality of The MYSTERY AMP !
Reply #99 - 10/16/14 at 03:44:31
 
I want to summary again here of my mod;

1) Improvement of signal path by pure silver or pure copper connectors, get rid of alloy connectors and pure silver wire cable.
    1 pair of WBT 0210 Ag RCA female jack  Net USD 116.40.
    1 set of 4 WBT 0705 Cu Next Gen Pole terminal  Net USD 262.40
     8 feet of Duelund hook up wire version 2.  Net USD 200.8
                               Subtotal for signal improvement = USD 579.60.
2) Improvement of Power Supply unit;
    1 unit of Furutech FI-03 (R) IEC outlet.  Net USD 22.40
    1 pair of Obbligato 10 uF 630 V Premium Gold Capacitor.  Net USD 44.2  
                               Subtotal for power supply unit = USD 66.60
3) Improvement by replacing signal coupling capacitor with Duelund Cu CAST PIO capacitors.
    3 pairs of Duelund Cu CAST PIO capacitor. 0.1 uF 630 VDC  Net USD 1,112.7
    1 pair of Jensen Silver Foil capacitor 0.022 uF 630 VDC.  Net USD 232.60
                               Subtotal for coupling caps replacement = USD 1,345.30

Total mod cost is USD 1991.50

Is it worth to spend the above money in mod?  Or Is it better to spend  money in other ways :
1) Keep money for new version of ZMA or Zen OTL amp? New version is always better than current version.
2) Spend money in other components in your Hi Fi chain : DAC, Pre-amp, IC, Power conditioner, PC, speakers, etc.

From The Best Sounding Amplifiers quoted by Dave 1210:
Quoted from Nelson Pass and his F6 Owner's Manual:

http://www.firstwatt.com/pdf/prod_f6_man.pdf

Besides measuring reasonably well, the best sounding amplifiers:
-tend to be simple
-are intrinsically linear
-run deep Class A
-use high quality components

The best sounding amplifiers also pay close attention to:
-the amount and scope of loop feedback
-the use of degeneration (the other feedback) and output loading
-the balance between types of feedback
-the amount and character of distortion harmonics vs level and frequency
-the appropriateness of gain devices for a given topology

I think that Decware Zen Mystery Amp is designed go along with the above concept. Steve has creates a wonderful sound of ZMA with a quality and reasonable price components so that all of us can afford to be owner of ZMA. If Steve starts ZMA with expensive boutique parts, the sound will be much more excellent but we may not affordable to buy it.      

(Below copy are derived from Tino © January 2011. I agree with his opinion and some is modified to suit my mod.)
How much can influence the sound of a amplifier pure silver connectors?
How much of the sound is due to the coupling capacitors?
How much can cost a good cap?

These and similar are the fundamental questions which motivated the tweaking or mod described in this project.
Was all that worth of?
Well, it is not an easy question. When I started it I didn't know how long and expensive (also in terms of time-consuming and Wife-Irritation Factor) this project would be. Also, usually hi-fi gears are “voiced” to reach a desired equilibrium. When you touch something (as the initially capacitors), you alter that equilibrium and, even if you are actually improving something, you will probably not be completely satisfied until you can reach a new equilibrium point. For example, doubling some polystyrene caps in the power supply were able to improve the mid-bass region and the dynamic as much as the high frequencies and resolution were improved by other mods (like pure silver connectors, Duelund hook up silver wire, Duelund Caps and fuse). In such a way, the final result is not only better than the original in many parameters, but it is still “well equilibrated”. For example, I asked to my friend to listen my system and to tell me which defects he can find. Well, he told me that the music was so pleasing (clear and well resolved, but still sweet) that he was really not able to concentrate on any defects at all...
Many DIY-ers states that their projects are far superior to the commercial products that you can buy at “human” prices, because they can use very good and boutique parts, which companies can't use,  because they are too expensive (consider that a company usually multiply by 6 the original costs of parts to find the commercial price of their products). I don't know how good in absolute terms my ZMA became (I would like to compare it with original ZMA to discover it). but I'm sure that if I estimate sonic quality of ZMA which is 2 times of general market price amp (2XUSD 5,695 = USD 11,390) and what I have spent for all these upgrades (about USD 1,991, without my work, of course) I will obtain a value (6 times of USD 1,991 plus USD 11,390 = USD 23,336) with which I guess that I can't buy something as good as my mod ZMA. Remember that Passion Signature 845 parallel 52W monoblock amplifier ($48,500/pair) and Passion Signature preamplifier ($22,500). They have also been customized with costly Duelund cast capacitors from Denmark, NOS resistors, NOS tubes in the preamplifier, and NOS driver tubes in the amplifier.

Thanks Steve for create a wonderful sound ZMA.
Back to top
« Last Edit: 10/16/14 at 04:52:22 by vyokyong »  

ma2.jpg

Audio Note DAC3.1 Custom modded to 4.1, DIY Duelund wire RCA IC, Offramp 5 USB SPDIF converter, Mac Mini, Amarra Symphony player,
Zen Mystery Amp. MIT Oracle speaker wire, Avalon Eidolon Diamond speakers. Coincident Statement preamp, Martin Logan Depth subwoofer
  IP Logged
Pages: 1 2 3 4 
Send Topic Print