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About Norton

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  1. I'd be grateful to hear your experience of Yggy vs DAVE.
  2. Thinking about a new DAC. DAVE is definitely on the shortlist. But many forum members seem sold on HQP and similar for up sampling/transcoding/filtering prior to DAC. Mention is sometimes made of the benefits of then being able to use a simple DAC that focuses just on DA conversion and analogue output. I've used HQP on and off for a couple of years with various conventional DACs and while I like it, I wouldn't rave about the results either. So my question is, who sells this ideal "simple" DAC which is tailored by design or by default for use with HQP etc: accepts both hi rate PCM and DSD, does no DSP itself on either format, has SOTA DA conversion (which I guess means other than through off the shelf chips?) and reference level attention paid to analogue output, power supply etc? If I read correctly the Lampi Atlantic might be one and I see reference to "Miska's DAC" but that seems to be a DIY design and therefore not for me. Any others on the market?
  3. I suspect that most DACs already "do it right". Don't confuse the need to tweak (and make money out of tweakers) with DACs actually requiring this stuff. Always amuses me when people assume they can improve on the work of a top DAC designer simply by buying these gadgets. As in many hobbies, there's plenty of money to be made out of selling "pocket money upgrades" - things that don't cost too much and are easy for the end user to fit, so viewed as a low risk purchase, but don't necessarily make any difference either.
  4. Agreed. I don't actually need the preamp or headphone features either, although whether removing them would actually affect pricing I'm not so sure. Based on material value, and even given the nice if slightly quirky build, my immediate impression was that there was absolutely no way DAVE was worth £8k+; after listening, I guess the price is really simply an admission charge to that level of sound quality.
  5. Thanks, I'll check it out.
  6. Thanks to all who have replied and especially to Skatbelt for precisely the kind of hands-on comparison I was looking for. If anyone has compared DAVE in their own system with Lampizator Atlantic, the "cheaper" Totaldac or MSB offerings, Hugo TT or 2, Yggdrasil for PCM, or T&A 8 for DSD please feel free to contribute...
  7. My Esoteric K07x SACD player has also been my DAC for the last couple of years. With the advent of reliable SACD ripping, I rarely use it now for disc duties. I've been wondering for a while just how it would stack up against a SOTA DAC and managed to borrow a Chord DAVE over the weekend. I wasn't looking in particular at the DAVE, just wanted to try something available and representative of DACS broadly considered to be in division 1 at the moment. In terms of my bank balance at least, I was hoping that DAVE would be maybe a little better than the Esoteric, but not enough to justify a change. Unfortunately what I'm hearing is way better than I'm used to, a big 3D sound with masses of subtle texture and detail previously unheard, not least on RBCD and 24/96. DAVE is also a lot of money and I haven't yet had the opportunity of hearing much else besides. My question, to those who have been able to spend quality time with DAVE vs others in their own system, is whether you have found anything that betters DAVE at the price or alternatively comes close but at a significantly lower price point? Preferably across both PCM and DSD and up to 384/ DSDx4 but would also be interested in competitors with standout strengths or value in just one or the other. Thanks.
  8. Agreed. And as far as I am aware, they use Merging kit for the transfers.
  9. Linn, Chandos, NativeDSD, Presto, HDTT. But in the main I just buy SACDs and rip.
  10. I have lots of LSOlive recordings, but agree that they have tended in the past to have a distant perspective and can come across as uninvolving and somewhat sterile sounding. The Gergiev Mahler cycle doesn't do a lot for me compared to Solti on RBCD or LP for example. I think they are improving though, I've particularly enjoyed the Nielsen symphonies and Mendelssohn 5 among more recent releases ( a bonus of both being the .dff and PCM files bundled with the already very reasonably priced SACDs). I can't find the link, but I thought there was a connection between the recording teams for LSO and Mariinsky labels - and I certainly rate the latter. For example, to my ears the Mariinsky Nutcracker/Tchaikovsky 4 ranks among the very best recordings I've heard on any format.
  11. Thanks for the clarification. If your review example is to an updated spec, is this the same as those on sale right now or might it be prudent to wait a while if interested in buying?
  12. George, re. the wording of your posts in this thread, can I ask, politely, whether you have a relationshipship with the company beyond simply being a satisfied paying customer?
  13. Presumably precisely because he has had a chance to hear and compare?
  14. That seems very sensible advice. For the serious listener: if it sounds better then all other concerns are effectively irrelevant; if it doesn't sound better then it will fail. This is after all an audiophile site, not a forum for the mass music marketing industry. By the standards of the latter, much of the body of hardware, software and recordings currently enjoyed by CA members would most likely also be dismissed as vapourware too (if using the somewhat idiosyncratic definition proposed by MQA critics on this site)