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    M-125 > Great sounds!

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    audiobill

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    Join date : 2014-03-13
    Location : Philadelphia

    M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by audiobill on Tue May 06, 2014 5:08 pm

    Like most of us, I've been at this a long time, and I'm enjoying my best sound ever through my M125s , dynaudio Geminis (built from kits, upgraded with Gemini Done Right Crossovers by Phil Bamberg), driven by a PS Audio PWD II Dac that also serves as a preamp.

    Streaming 16/44 over Qobuz, and hires through my MacBook Air, unplugged from wall while listening.

    I wish you all could hear this!!!!Smile

    Bill

    corndog71

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by corndog71 on Tue May 06, 2014 5:50 pm

    Are you familiar with PS Audio's new DAC? Direct Stream. Converts everything to DSD and apparently unlocks the full potential of the old CD format. If you already have a PW DAC you can chuck the old guts and just buy the new guts at a discount. Really sucks it's so darn expensive though. I'll never spend $6K on a DAC.

    audiobill

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by audiobill on Tue May 06, 2014 6:33 pm

    Yes, I am.

    I just bought the PWDII new for $1750 (list $4,000) with that potential upgrade in mind after the Directstream settles in. The upgrade kit is $3000, so I would have a new DS for $4,750.

    I think the dac these days is a key component, right up there with speakers and amps.

    As we move from an own to stream model, this will become more so.

    sKiZo

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by sKiZo on Tue May 06, 2014 8:14 pm

    Hmmmmm ... $4K - $300 = er ... a whole bunch!

    I could get better than a dozen Mavericks for that kind of money ... as is, I'll settle for two.



    The D1+ has a much improved USB Tenor chipset that's quite tasty and runs rings around the original D1. I'm sure the PWDII is better, but not THAT much better, and I'm quite satisfied with what I'm hearing. As is, I can get better resolution using the Maverick via optical, but I prefer the sound of the lower resolution USB. Probably the computer's S/PDIF implementation. If I ever get bored enough, I might experiment with that, but once again, not worth the bother to bother as what I'm getting via USB is excellent. I suppose a lot depends on what you listen to also - Most everything I got is CD Redbook rips converted to FLAC.

    I do get better playback from my Oppo using the original cd, but again ... I'm spoiled rotten being able to just click thru a thousand CDs or so in the digital server. What's funny is, I still don't mind going through all the work to load up the turntable and give it a spin. Go figure.

    One point worth making - if you're still using a cd player, and it's more than maybe five years old, junk it. Even entry level players can run rings around most of what was available back then, including a lot of high end gear.



    audiobill

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by audiobill on Tue May 06, 2014 8:17 pm

    Agree.

    CDs are so last decade........

    audiobill

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by audiobill on Tue May 06, 2014 8:22 pm

    Actually, I auditioned these DACs, and the PWD clearly bested them all:

    Emotiva DC1
    Cambridge Audio Stream Magic 6
    Oppo 105 used as a DAC/preamp
    BMC Puredac
    NAD M51
    PS Audio PWD II

    Interestingly, the Emo placed second. A screaming good deal at $500 as it has full preamp capabilities, including an analog in and headphone out.

    MontanaWay

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by MontanaWay on Tue May 06, 2014 8:52 pm

    I am serially considering the Maverick Audio TubeMagic D2.
    I don't need the volume or headphone outputs of the D1 or D1 Plus, looks like the D2 will do me just perfect for our iPod and optical output from our LED flat screen. I can just imagine running the TV through the ST70!.......booooooom  affraid 

    corndog71

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by corndog71 on Tue May 06, 2014 10:45 pm

    If you don't want to drop a lot of coin then I recommend the Musical Fidelity V90-DAC. I have it's predecessor and it's pretty damn good for the money.

    MontanaWay

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by MontanaWay on Wed May 07, 2014 2:02 am

    I just ordered the TubeMagic D2, which is actually cheaper then the V90-DAC.
    From what I have read, I am confident that for my use the D2 will be more than sufficient and I prefer the look of the black than the silver  Very Happy

    I just can't see nor justify paying thousands for a mere DAC. The average human ear, in my opinion, although very good, just would not be able to tell the difference between a unit costing thousands compared to a few hundred, no matter what some people claim.  Shocked 

    audiobill

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by audiobill on Wed May 07, 2014 4:05 am

    There are very apparent differences among dacs, from the implementation of the chip, to the critical analog stage as well as filters.

    "mere dac" .

    Me thinks not!

    MontanaWay

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by MontanaWay on Wed May 07, 2014 4:14 am

    audiobill wrote:There are very apparent differences among dacs, from the implementation of the chip, to the critical analog stage as well as filters.

    "mere dac" .

    Me thinks not!


    oh no doubt there are, pretty much the same as many other products.
    I still maintain though, and this being my personal opinion, that those differences are absolutely not worth thousands!...no matter what the manufacturer claims!

    audiobill

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by audiobill on Wed May 07, 2014 4:20 am

    That's a personal value judgement, not a conclusion of facts.

    Best,

    Bill

    MontanaWay

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by MontanaWay on Wed May 07, 2014 4:29 am

    audiobill wrote:That's a personal value judgement, not a conclusion of facts.  

    Best,

    Bill

    never said nor claimed otherwise...if people feel all warm and fuzzy inside spending thousands on individual gear....no skin off my nose.  Shocked 

    audiobill

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by audiobill on Wed May 07, 2014 4:32 am

    Sorry.

    No harm intended, but I have spent a lot of time on this, and wanted you to benefit!

    MontanaWay

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by MontanaWay on Wed May 07, 2014 4:36 am

    audiobill wrote:Sorry.

    No harm intended, but I have spent a lot of time on this, and wanted you to benefit!

    oh my, no apologies needed....like I said, just my personal opinion & feelings...we all see things differently and are prepared to pay premium if we feel it is warranted  Smile 

    audiobill

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by audiobill on Wed May 07, 2014 4:38 am

    Agree.

    Wish you could hear this system!

    Tom

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    Join date : 2011-04-04

    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by Tom on Wed May 07, 2014 8:32 am

    Dang, for a minute there I though Bob was going to need to get the attack cat out for you two...

    Very Happy

    audiobill

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by audiobill on Wed May 07, 2014 8:36 am

    alien lol! 

    MontanaWay

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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by MontanaWay on Wed May 07, 2014 12:36 pm

    Tom wrote:Dang, for a minute there I though Bob was going to need to get the attack cat out for you two...

    Very Happy

    MEEEEEEOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUUUUWWWWWWWWWWW.............

    pmarcin

    Posts : 131
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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by pmarcin on Wed May 07, 2014 12:52 pm

    Upgrade to the Dogs of War. It's a moot point. I thought VCaps were extravagant until I rebuilt an Eico HF-12 for a client.I t's sound was beautiful and so transparent, the best I've ever auditioned. And that was using a Monarchy NM-24 and a CD.

    sKiZo

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    Location : Michigan USA

    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by sKiZo on Wed May 07, 2014 2:15 pm

    MontanaWay wrote:I just ordered the TubeMagic D2, which is actually cheaper then the V90-DAC.
    From what I have read, I am confident that for my use the D2 will be more than sufficient and I prefer the look of the black than the silver  Very Happy

    I just can't see nor justify paying thousands for a mere DAC. The average human ear, in my opinion, although very good, just would not be able to tell the difference between a unit costing thousands compared to a few hundred, no matter what some people claim.  Shocked 

    You cheap bastid!

    (welcome to the club)  geek 

    Consensus is, the Mavericks perform well above their price point. I think you're gonna like what you hear. I was tempted when the D2 came out, but didn't want to lose the analog in of the D1 and D1+. I run my turntable into that via an external stage to take advantage of the tooby pre-stage. Trade off is, the D2 has a much improved optical stage (which I don't use). Seems to me they both have the same USB handling, but don't quote me on that.

    The volume control is bypassed by default to minimize the signal path. If you decide somewhere down the way you want the volume control for line out, I believe the D2 has the same internal jumpers as the D1+. I've done that on mine, and haven't noticed any earth shattering difference in sound quality ...



    Just move those to where they aren't, and the pot works for both headphones AND line level. I find it kinda handy for loading the ST120 - What seems to work best for me is -3db from the server, down three notches on the Maverick, and volume controls on the ST120 set to around 7½ of 10. Definite difference in detail from just using any one set of controls.

    Didja get the tube and op amp upgrades? I put the money I saved not going with a PWDII into tubes ...  somebody stops me!! drunken 



    PS ... only complaint I had with the Mavericks is the cover is dang near impossible to get off. That sucker is TIGHT! Solution was to dremel off the bottom flanges so I can just drop it on, rather than using a very large hammer or press to "slip" it on ...

    MontanaWay

    Posts : 767
    Join date : 2014-02-06
    Age : 58
    Location : Cameron, Montana

    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by MontanaWay on Wed May 07, 2014 2:31 pm

    sKiZo wrote:
    MontanaWay wrote:I just ordered the TubeMagic D2, which is actually cheaper then the V90-DAC.
    From what I have read, I am confident that for my use the D2 will be more than sufficient and I prefer the look of the black than the silver  Very Happy

    I just can't see nor justify paying thousands for a mere DAC. The average human ear, in my opinion, although very good, just would not be able to tell the difference between a unit costing thousands compared to a few hundred, no matter what some people claim.  Shocked 

    You cheap bastid!

    (welcome to the club)  geek 

    Consensus is, the Mavericks perform well above their price point. I think you're gonna like what you hear. I was tempted when the D2 came out, but didn't want to lose the analog in of the D1 and D1+. I run my turntable into that via an external stage to take advantage of the tooby pre-stage. Trade off is, the D2 has a much improved optical stage (which I don't use). Seems to me they both have the same USB handling, but don't quote me on that.

    The volume control is bypassed by default to minimize the signal path. If you decide somewhere down the way you want the volume control for line out, I believe the D2 has the same internal jumpers as the D1+. I've done that on mine, and haven't noticed any earth shattering difference in sound quality ...



    Just move those to where they aren't, and the pot works for both headphones AND line level. I find it kinda handy for loading the ST120 - What seems to work best for me is -3db from the server, down three notches on the Maverick, and volume controls on the ST120 set to around 7½ of 10. Definite difference in detail from just using any one set of controls.

    Didja get the tube and op amp upgrades? I put the money I saved not going with a PWDII into tubes ...  somebody stops me!! drunken 



    PS ... only complaint I had with the Mavericks is the cover is dang near impossible to get off. That sucker is TIGHT! Solution was to dremel off the bottom flanges so I can just drop it on, rather than using a very large hammer or press to "slip" it on ...

    cheap is good....cheap rules...to a point of course!
    I did mull over the analog in.......I am happy with my SP9/PH10 setup, plus I have a separate headphone amp, so the DAC is purely so that we can listen to the iPod and run the TV via optical through the system.
    I did not go for any upgrades, I can always buy different tubes and op-amp if I think it is worth it or I get the tube & op-amp rolling itch  Very Happy 
    It will be nice to be able to run those few extra gadgets through our system.  cheers

    corndog71

    Posts : 444
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    Re: M-125 > Great sounds!

    Post by corndog71 on Wed May 07, 2014 4:02 pm

    MontanaWay wrote:

    cheap is good....cheap rules...to a point of course!
    I did mull over the analog in.......I am happy with my SP9/PH10 setup, plus I have a separate headphone amp, so the DAC is purely so that we can listen to the iPod and run the TV via optical through the system.
    I did not go for any upgrades, I can always buy different tubes and op-amp if I think it is worth it or I get the tube & op-amp rolling itch  Very Happy 
    It will be nice to be able to run those few extra gadgets through our system.  cheers

    Another way to get your ipod to play music through a stereo is to get Apple TV. $99 and makes listening to any apple mobile device a no-brainer.

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