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HK's Digital Next Step (Read 993 times)
HockessinKid
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Posts: 481
HK's Digital Next Step
05/09/20 at 12:58:46
 
In an effort to simplify my set up, I began to explore one box (streamer + DAC) solutions recently. I am currently using a Lonely Raven PC and VDAC2 DAC to stream TIDAL and access my hard drive FLAC files. This combination has performed admirably, only a fewsome hiccups streaming with QUOBUZ.

I almost pulled the trigger on a friend's used Lumin T2 network player, but became intrigued by Steve's comments and listening observations of the Cambridge CXN V2. I trust his ears. What cinched it for me was learning on Audio Circle that Dan Wright (Modwright Instruments) was considering modifications to the CXN V2, similar to those he offers on the Pioneer UHD LX-500. Dan's modded LX-500 sounds simply heavenly and incredibly accurate! I also have his excellent PH 9.0 phono preamp.

So my newly purchased network player is enroute to Amboy, WA (home of Modwright) as I write this. While Dan hasn't completely finalized the mods, it will include bypassing the stock analog stage after the Wolfson WM8740 DACs with his own Class A, Lundahl transformer coupled analog stage. Anticipated mods include:

- Upgraded Furutech IEC.
- Two linear power supplies added for digital & analog power.
- A solid state rectified & regulated, Class A tube analog stage.
- Lundahl signal transformers.
- Modwright Instruments M-Type coupling capacitors.

I expect Dan will be employing 6922 tubes and equivalents for the tube analog section, as in most of his other modifications.

Should be receiving the unit in a few weeks and I'll post some impressions. BTW, after careful consideration I'm going to keep the PC and Decware VDAC2 for back-up (you never know) or to pass on to my son for his system.

Well, there goes my stimulus funds😊.

HK
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Nottingham Interspace TT w/ Dynavector 20x2LO cart + Modwright PH 9.0 phono pre > ZROCK2-25th OR Modwright modified Cambridge CNX V2 > CSP3-25th preamp > ZMA-25th amp > PI Audio Group UberBUSS PC > Omega SAHO XRS or Caintuck Audio Lii 15 speakers > various cables.
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Tommy Freefall
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Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #1 - 05/10/20 at 22:49:39
 
To quote the DiCaprio character in Django Unchained:

"Gentlemen, you had my curiosity. But, now you have my attention"
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Torii MkIV w/ 25th ann mods
Rachael SE34I.5
ERRx
ZStage, ZBIT, ZRock2
Tascam CD-240
Border Patrol DAC
Zu Audio Mission speaker cables
Declare Interconnects
Zenhead, Grado 325e
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piezoman
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"If it ain't
broke, fix it!"

Posts: 267
Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #2 - 06/26/20 at 17:39:36
 
I agree with Tommy. The stock unit does not have my attention, but the modded one might. Its going to take something dramatic for me to even consider unseating my current dac/player combo. The stock Cambridge would be a downgrade.

HK, has a final price tag been applied yet?

Brad
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Taboo MK IV-25th
CSP3-25th Anniv. Ed.
ZRock2-25th
ZBIT
Omega Jr. 8XRS towers w/ALNICO driver
Bryston BDA-3/BDP-2
Blue Circle Line Cond.
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Aluminum Iso feet w/ceramic balls
IC's: DSR-II, Better Cables Silver XLR
Cables: ZStyx, DHC-1, Curious
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HockessinKid
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Posts: 481
Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #3 - 06/26/20 at 18:46:39
 
Have you listened to a stock unit? By all accounts they are receiving pretty rave reviews from listeners. Maybe not the ultimate, but for $1099 pretty nice.

Dan Wright has all the modifications designed, but he's slammed with backorders and down two technicians due to Covid-19 issues. I expect the fully modified  CXN V2 will be ready sometime next month.  Dan has not announced pricing for the modifications yet. A lot of interest has been expressed by current customers, so I expect he'll stay very busy.

I'll post a link to his Audio Circle thread once he posts info and pictures of the modifications.

HK
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Nottingham Interspace TT w/ Dynavector 20x2LO cart + Modwright PH 9.0 phono pre > ZROCK2-25th OR Modwright modified Cambridge CNX V2 > CSP3-25th preamp > ZMA-25th amp > PI Audio Group UberBUSS PC > Omega SAHO XRS or Caintuck Audio Lii 15 speakers > various cables.
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piezoman
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"If it ain't
broke, fix it!"

Posts: 267
Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #4 - 06/26/20 at 22:08:58
 
HK, I'll bet that modded unit will be exquisite. Looking forward to your updates as they become available.

I'm sure the unit in stock form is indeed quite good. My apology for any negative implications.
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Taboo MK IV-25th
CSP3-25th Anniv. Ed.
ZRock2-25th
ZBIT
Omega Jr. 8XRS towers w/ALNICO driver
Bryston BDA-3/BDP-2
Blue Circle Line Cond.
Audeze LCD-3F
Aluminum Iso feet w/ceramic balls
IC's: DSR-II, Better Cables Silver XLR
Cables: ZStyx, DHC-1, Curious
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HockessinKid
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Posts: 481
Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #5 - 06/27/20 at 00:57:22
 
No need for an apology piezoman. Everyone is entitled to their opinion.

I value input and listening experiences of others when it comes to stereo equipment, especially from regular posters here on the Decware forums. Everyone's ears and listening rooms are different, so its not uncommon for folks to disagree on ones listening experiences and what one likes.

Personally, I try to subject a piece of equipment to at least one month of critical listening before rendering or sharing my opinion, good or bad. That's listening to a variety of music (vinyl, CD's, or HiRez streamed music) I know intimately. It has to work in your system and your listening room. FWIW, I have also found attending Decfest (twice) provides an excellent opportunity to hear the latest and greatest Decware equipment in Steve's excellent listening room.

Case in point. I attended Defest 2020 last year just for fun with no intentions of getting any new equipment. That was before hearing the Lii Audio drivers. The Lii Audio 15's and Crystal 10's in various OB configurations simply floored me. So, I eventually ended up ordering a pair of Caintuck Audio Lii 15 speakers. These speakers provide an exceptional listening experience and are pretty easy on the wallet as well.

Cheers,

HK

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Nottingham Interspace TT w/ Dynavector 20x2LO cart + Modwright PH 9.0 phono pre > ZROCK2-25th OR Modwright modified Cambridge CNX V2 > CSP3-25th preamp > ZMA-25th amp > PI Audio Group UberBUSS PC > Omega SAHO XRS or Caintuck Audio Lii 15 speakers > various cables.
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Tommy Freefall
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Posts: 235
Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #6 - 06/27/20 at 20:06:40
 
HK, similar to your situation, Ive been seriously considering getting a Streamer/DAC component.
High on my list of potential acquisitions are the the Lumin units - their gear get a lot of high praise.
Also, PS Audio just recently released a new Streamer/DAC called the Stellar Strata (it even contains a 200wpc, class D amp).
Im curious to see how that turns out.

Steves recent high praise for the stock Cambridge unit gave me pause.
The Cambridge has now vaulted to the top of my list.
HK, Im looking forward to your thoughts on the Modwright version. Those mods sound pretty awesome.
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Torii MkIV w/ 25th ann mods
Rachael SE34I.5
ERRx
ZStage, ZBIT, ZRock2
Tascam CD-240
Border Patrol DAC
Zu Audio Mission speaker cables
Declare Interconnects
Zenhead, Grado 325e
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HockessinKid
Seasoned Member
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Posts: 481
Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #7 - 06/27/20 at 20:33:17
 
Tommy,

If not for hearing Modwright's previously modified OPPO 205, the great sound of their PH 9.0 phono preamp, and Steve's comments on the Cambridge CXN V2 w/ Roon software, I would have purchased a friends Lumin T2.

My Lonely Raven PC and VDAC2 combination sounds really great, but I'd like to have a one box solution. I was a latecomer to streaming (2018) and have tried both TIDAL and Qubuz HiRez services.

Given Dan's extensive experience with modifying digital sources, I expect this unit will compete with the very best. He's only modifying the audio circuitry chain. He says mods will include Lundahl signal transformers, a 6922 tube analog output stage w/ newly designed circuit, MW coupling caps, and a Furutech IEC.

The wait has been tough. Due to Covid-19, he's down two technicians and dealing with a large backorder of equipment to retailers and customers. Pulling 12 hour workdays with just him and his son. I'm sure he'll finish in the next few weeks though. He has told me the wait will be "well worth it".

HK
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Nottingham Interspace TT w/ Dynavector 20x2LO cart + Modwright PH 9.0 phono pre > ZROCK2-25th OR Modwright modified Cambridge CNX V2 > CSP3-25th preamp > ZMA-25th amp > PI Audio Group UberBUSS PC > Omega SAHO XRS or Caintuck Audio Lii 15 speakers > various cables.
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Tommy Freefall
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Posts: 235
Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #8 - 08/10/20 at 02:20:03
 
Hey HK, just checking in. Did you take delivery yet on your modded CXN V2 from ModWright?
If not, I imagine it can't be too much longer before it's completed and shipped.
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Torii MkIV w/ 25th ann mods
Rachael SE34I.5
ERRx
ZStage, ZBIT, ZRock2
Tascam CD-240
Border Patrol DAC
Zu Audio Mission speaker cables
Declare Interconnects
Zenhead, Grado 325e
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HockessinKid
Seasoned Member
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Posts: 481
Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #9 - 08/10/20 at 08:51:39
 
4-5 more weeks according to Dan. He's still down a couple techs and has a large backup of orders. Ugh!

HK
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Nottingham Interspace TT w/ Dynavector 20x2LO cart + Modwright PH 9.0 phono pre > ZROCK2-25th OR Modwright modified Cambridge CNX V2 > CSP3-25th preamp > ZMA-25th amp > PI Audio Group UberBUSS PC > Omega SAHO XRS or Caintuck Audio Lii 15 speakers > various cables.
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HockessinKid
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Posts: 481
Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #10 - 08/25/20 at 23:47:07
 
Looks like Dan Wright has begun the modification process in earnest. Anyone interested can follow this on Facebook. Here's the link to Dan's post today.

https://www.facebook.com/100001630611649/posts/3405883309475989/

HK
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Nottingham Interspace TT w/ Dynavector 20x2LO cart + Modwright PH 9.0 phono pre > ZROCK2-25th OR Modwright modified Cambridge CNX V2 > CSP3-25th preamp > ZMA-25th amp > PI Audio Group UberBUSS PC > Omega SAHO XRS or Caintuck Audio Lii 15 speakers > various cables.
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piezoman
Seasoned Member
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"If it ain't
broke, fix it!"

Posts: 267
Re: HK's Digital Next Step
Reply #11 - 09/11/20 at 18:17:40
 
Wow. I'll bet the final result will make you speechless. Its great that you're doing this.

Thanks for sharing, HK.
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Taboo MK IV-25th
CSP3-25th Anniv. Ed.
ZRock2-25th
ZBIT
Omega Jr. 8XRS towers w/ALNICO driver
Bryston BDA-3/BDP-2
Blue Circle Line Cond.
Audeze LCD-3F
Aluminum Iso feet w/ceramic balls
IC's: DSR-II, Better Cables Silver XLR
Cables: ZStyx, DHC-1, Curious
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