Chord DAVE Review

January 20, 2019 § Leave a comment

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Best Headphone Amps & DACs To Buy In 2019

January 17, 2019 § Leave a comment

PS Audio DirectStream DAC Review

January 9, 2019 § Leave a comment

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“The hype is real. Snowmass is leaps and bounds better than the previous Redcloud OS – and you didn’t even have to pull out your wallet.

One could learn a lot about the designers from their best work. After having the pleasure of indulging in Ted Smith’s latest masterpiece, it’s obvious he is a music lover himself – and we’re reaping the benefits.

Snowmass reminds me of what we strive for when listening to music. It facilitates toe-tapping, dancing, and singalongs. What else do we want? For that, I really must commend Mr. Smith and PS Audio for continually providing appreciable value to their customers.”

Chord Electronics Qutest D/A processor $1895 Review

January 8, 2019 § Leave a comment

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“Overall, a win on points to the PS Audio, but of course, it ought to sound better than the Chord, given that it costs more than three times as much. I therefore reached for our review sample of the original Mytek Brooklyn, which Jim Austin reviewed in November 2016. The Brooklyn cost $100 more than the Qutest (footnote 4) but includes a phono preamp, volume control, and headphone output, as well as offering MQA decoding. For the comparisons I set the Brooklyn’s reconstruction filter to MPh (Minimum Phase), which I felt dealt most gracefully with the overcooked Queen album. Even so, the Mytek’s balance was slightly more forward than the Chord’s, which meant it sounded a little louder despite the levels being matched.”

AVM Ovation SD 6.2 Preamplifier-DAC-Streamer $9990

December 24, 2018 § Leave a comment

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‘As I listened more, I began to concentrate less on the performance of the SD 6.2 within specific frequency bands. For instance, when I tried to focus on what the AVM was doing in the bass, I realized I was assessing more the sound of the speakers than of the electronics. This became obvious when I swapped out the EgglestonWorks Kivas, which are fairly large, three-way floorstanders, for Monitor Audio’s smallish, two-way, Studio stand-mounts, then swapped the Kivas back in again. My takeaway from all of that was that the Ovation SD 6.2 had no problem of bass lightness or heavy-handedness. Its sound seemed perfectly neutral, feeding each pair of speakers exactly what it needed to produce excellent bass within that model’s capabilities.

Eventually, as I began to focus more on soundstaging, I came to find out that this largely depended on how the SD 6.2 handled high-frequency subtleties. Basically, the AVM’s reproduction of the treble was so delicate and precise that its re-creations of the subtle cues of the acoustics of live venues were stunningly realistic. Concert recordings took on a more holographic nature in terms of soundstage depth, and my perception of the AVM’s ability to reproduce the ambience that placed me at the center of a soundfield — as opposed to looking in at it from a distance, from the outside — also increased.”

Schiit Modi 3 DAC is a $99 bargain

December 2, 2018 § Leave a comment

Chord’s Qutest is *the* DAC to beat at $2K

November 20, 2018 § Leave a comment

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