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Gazjam
04-11-2008, 23:11
Whats this I hear about a new Bdac power supply in the works?


..or was someone being sarcy on another forum?

Marco
04-11-2008, 23:23
What - another forum?? Surely there isn't such a thing... :confused:

Marco.

Gazjam
05-11-2008, 00:55
Yeah....

who'da thunk it?

Gazjam
17-11-2008, 12:26
I take it from the lack of response Stans either keeping it quiet or the rumour of an upgraded PSU for the Dac is BS.

..still none the wiser, ah well [

StanleyB
17-11-2008, 12:34
The falling is putting a number of my projects on hold till trading conditions are more favourable. The MK6/4 is selling faster than I can get my production and delivery to the UK sorted out though. I reckon I shall be out of stock by Wednesday till next week...

I shall let you know about the PSU when I have one to post around for beta testing.

Stan

Covenant
17-11-2008, 16:47
Being very cheeky here Stanley but if you are looking for volunteers for Beta testing Im your man.....

StanleyB
17-11-2008, 17:22
That's a hard one. From what I gather you can't even confirm if the MOD21 is an improvement or not:scratch:...

Covenant
17-11-2008, 19:00
Very true-thats because I decided to operate on my amp with no experience. But by the time you get the new power supply up and running I will be thoroughly familiar with the 6/4. :)
My amp has been rebuilt with a new board and Audiomagus tweaks (bigger capacitors etc) and will be arriving back home tomorrow.:eek:
In all honesty I will probably buy your power supply anyway. I got a linear P.S made for my Squeezebox and experienced a huge improvement.
I seem to remember you saying a while back that with the virtual supply there was very little benefit from changes in this area-what has changed?

Gazjam
17-11-2008, 19:17
Interesting (re)discovery....

With the thought of an alternative PSU for the Dac, I dug out my Maplins 12v/13.5v power supply, which hadn't been used since I was running the MK5 version of Stans Dac.

Stan had said that the Virtual DC circuit in the 6/3 negated any benefit from changing the power supply, but being the curious bugger I am, I wanted to try it on the MK6/4.

Stan? Big improvement. I was surprised.
Sounds more "solid" now, especially the bass. Its deeper, yet more solid. Any left/right speaker seperation that was there (not much mind you) is now gone. The sound is completely seamless, coming from the back wall, rather than the speakers.

The Maplin PSU DID let me use my specialist power cord mind you, so perhaps this played a part as well.
I used one of these, which had been sitting redundant formerly used for CD player duties.

http://www.krystal-kables.com/products/about_us.htm

http://www.avreview.co.uk/review/reviewProductReviews/mps/rpn/8455/prod/Krystal-Kables-Titan-Power-Cords/rcn/46/rgn/5/v/1/sp/#400

So.....I dunno.
Was it the cord? Was it the PSU? Cant say for sure.
But the sound is NOTICABLY better Stan, not quite the leap from 6/3 to 6/4 (that was very very pronounced), but its not a subtle improvement either.
"Boogie factor" is much better, wider soundstage and that more solid sound.

In my opinion then, theres scope for a PSU upgrade for the DAC.
Wonder if it will be better than the Maplin/Krystal Kable power cord combo?

Gazjam
17-11-2008, 19:20
Very true-thats because I decided to operate on my amp with no experience. But by the time you get the new power supply up and running I will be thoroughly familiar with the 6/4. :)
My amp has been rebuilt with a new board and Audiomagus tweaks (bigger capacitors etc) and will be arriving back home tomorrow.:eek:
In all honesty I will probably buy your power supply anyway. I got a linear P.S made for my Squeezebox and experienced a huge improvement.
I seem to remember you saying a while back that with the virtual supply there was very little benefit from changes in this area-what has changed?

Covenant,
I was thinking about a PSU upgrade for my SB3, but discounted it as the SB3 internals have a switching power supply which makes an external linear one (in theory anyway) not able to improve the sound.

Are you using the analogue outs or the SPDIF into Stans Dac for your SB??

What linear PSU have you got, and is it a real improvement on the standard wall wart??

The PSU issue is the last unresolved question I have regarding my SB so any insight appreciated mate.

Gaz.

Covenant
17-11-2008, 19:49
Hi Gazjam,
Digital out from the SB3 into the old Standac.
The l.p.s.u was made for me by someone off another form. Its a real home made jobby stuck in one of those teak boxes you have in the kitchen for putting spoons in. Perhaps I was exaggerating a smidgen to say a huge improvement but it did alter the soundstage for the better. Cost about 100 if I remember. I will PM details for you to make contact if you want.
Personally I dont think much of aftermarket power cords. I got a Virtual Dynamics one to test and desperately wanted to be able to report an improvement just to appear grateful. In all honestly I couldnt hear any difference despite it being the size of a pregnant anaconda.

StanleyB
17-11-2008, 19:51
Stan had said that the Virtual DC circuit in the 6/3 negated any benefit from changing the power supply, but being the curious bugger I am, I wanted to try it on the MK6/4.
IN the 6/3;). Who knows what I have fitted in the 6/4 in anticipation of anything else that might one day be used in conjunction with the 6/4:eyebrows:.

Covenant
17-11-2008, 20:11
Bit of a tease is our Stanley......

Ali Tait
17-11-2008, 20:14
I have heard Mo's Red Wine Audio modded SB.This uses a car battery as the supply.Sounds good.

Gazjam
17-11-2008, 20:26
IN the 6/3;). Who knows what I have fitted in the 6/4 in anticipation of anything else that might one day be used in conjunction with the 6/4:eyebrows:.

Ah-HA!

That could.....explain a few things.
Glad my curiosity got the better of me, quite an upgrade I gave myself!


Stan, probably a silly question, but the Mod21 I got on my 6/3...is that the only difference between my old Dac and the new 6/4?
Are there any other topology changes apart form the Mod21 thats in the "off the shelf" 6/4 compared to the "modded" 6/3's?


I think you said it was...but I cant remember...

I'm thinking mostly of my OWN Mk 6/3 that you modded for me.

ta.


As of tonight my Dac's singing sweeter than its ever done.
Bloody hell Stan, your good!

Gaz.

Covenant
17-11-2008, 20:28
Dont suppose you have heard an Audiocom modified one have you? The price isnt bad but bits like " Bybee Slipstream Quantum Purifier" sound a bit snake-oilish to me. Dont fancy sending my SB3 off to the states.

Gazjam
17-11-2008, 20:38
havent heard ANY 3rd party PSU's for the SB.

it seems to be 50/50 wether if your using a DAC it actually makes any difference.

Sean Adams (Inventor of the thing) posts on the SB forums and has given technical breaksowns of why it makes NO difference.

There are those that say they hear a difference (of course after having bought an expensive PSU already...;)) but there are also those who post regularly, that say they would buy one if it made a difference...but they found it not to.

A good cheap way to dip your toe in (and its the most popular option amongst the believers...) is THIS:

http://cpc.farnell.com/jsp/Batteries+&+Power+Supplies/AC+to+DC/UNBRANDED/AD-05150R/displayProduct.jsp?sku=PW00187

NOt expensive - worth a punt I'd say.

Spur07
17-11-2008, 20:57
i'd also be interested in testing/purchasing a PSU for my beresford dac.

in fact, i might pop down to maplins myself and try to recreate gazjam's little experiment.

would upgrading the PSU for a SB make much difference bearing in mind the beresford is re-clocking the signal? I use a Trends Audio UD-10 USB convertor to stream music from my computer to the beresford and it has a seperate battery pack power supply as an alternative to powering via the USB. When I was using it with an old 90's dac (DPA Enlightenment) the difference was considerable over the USB, but with Stanley's dac I can't tell the difference at all.

StanleyB
17-11-2008, 21:11
Stan, probably a silly question, but the Mod21 I got on my 6/3...is that the only difference between my old Dac and the new 6/4?
Are there any other topology changes apart form the Mod21 thats in the "off the shelf" 6/4 compared to the "modded" 6/3's?

The 6/4 is the 6/3 & MOD21. Each PCB is modded by hand and then the whole DAC is hand assembled and tested.
I am selling the units faster than we can mod and test each one, so I might not have any stock to shift from tomorrow until another batch of modded units can be boxed and packed over the weekend, ready for next week.

Gazjam
17-11-2008, 21:26
Thanks for that Stan.

Sounds like business is good.

Pretty soon you'll look back and fondly remember building that first prototype......

Ali Tait
17-11-2008, 22:53
Mo's as modded by RW audio had had a few quid spent on it,black gates,fancy connectors as well as the new supply etc.From what we heard though,we couldn't tell the difference between the SB on it's own and the SB used with Stan's dac.Says a lot for the dac really doesn't it? Haven't heard an Audiocom modded one.

leo
18-11-2008, 05:26
Chucking Blackgate caps and other fancy passive components in the SB3 is a waste IMHO, apart from the crappy external SMPS the squeezebox uses internal switcher for LDO regs

If you want to improve these units

seperate the regs (if you see inside one of these you'll know why this will help) theres lots of crap on the lines like the display etc
Ditch the external SMPS
The SPDIF buffer has the XO's and digital out sharing a single chip:doh: also the decoupling for the buffer isn't great
Ditch the SMD inductors in the SPDIF and use a properly loaded pulse transformer feeding a 75R BNC socket

These make quite decent sources for an external dac once a few compromises have been sorted.
A good dac with reclocking can only do so much, give it an easier time for better performance;)

Theres mods you can do to improve the analogue outs, personally I wouldn't bother and rather use it as a source for an external dac

Covenant
18-11-2008, 07:37
Do you know ayone who offers these mods Leo?
The Audiocom mods seem to mostly be fitting Bybee quantum slipstream purifers which I know nothing about but sound like snake oil.

Gazjam
18-11-2008, 08:20
Quantum Slipstream...?
Aint that from Star Trek?

Covenant
18-11-2008, 08:38
Makes you cringe doesnt it?
Look it up on google - they strip electrons of their energy apparently. Wouldnt they stop flying about if that happened? Oh well the guy who invented them is a quantum physicist so it must do something.....

jandl100
18-11-2008, 09:45
Can someone give me a link to the Maplins PSU? - I fancy trying out on my ancient Mk3 Beresford. Ta. :)

Gazjam
18-11-2008, 10:00
Heres the chappie....

http://info.maplin.co.uk/Module.aspx?ModuleNo=48517


I'm not using it with the supplied mains lead though, I use it with one of Franks (Krystal Kables) Titan leads.
Improved my Mark 5 Dac, done nothing for my 6/3.

jandl100
18-11-2008, 11:54
Thanks Gaz - I've placed an order. :)

leo
18-11-2008, 13:53
Do you know ayone who offers these mods Leo?
The Audiocom mods seem to mostly be fitting Bybee quantum slipstream purifers which I know nothing about but sound like snake oil.

TBH no, I did the mods to mine myself.
Easiest and cheapest way to start is a decent external linear psu although thats obviously not going to cure the compromises inside the SB3

I can't comment on the Bybee's, I've never tried them tbh, I like to understand how things work and what their doing in the circuit before sticking these sort of things in there or even comenting on them.
If I get an idea what they are supposed to be doing then I'd consider trying some.
I can't see how they can cure compromises in a particular unit , maybe their something you use as a final tweaks on an already decent piece of kit:confused:

Marco
18-11-2008, 14:00
Your last sentence is spot on, Leo (as is the rest of your post, TBH) and it's why I will have Mark from Audiocom fit some Bybees to my Sony DAS-R1 :)

Don't worry, I'll report the differences on the forum in great detail, a-la usual Marco stylee ;)

Marco.

leo
18-11-2008, 14:19
Your last sentence is spot on, Leo (as is the rest of your post, TBH) and it's why I will have Mark from Audiocom fit some Bybees to my Sony DAS-R1 :)

Don't worry, I'll report the differences on the forum in great detail, a-la usual Marco stylee ;)

Marco.

Will look forward to reading your results Marco:)

Gazjam
18-11-2008, 15:34
TBH no, I did the mods to mine myself.
Easiest and cheapest way to start is a decent external linear psu although thats obviously not going to cure the compromises inside the SB3

they can cure compromises in a particular unit , maybe their something you use as a final tweaks on an already decent piece of kit:confused:

Marco, Leo,
I'm a bit confused..

The SPDIF on the SB3 has repeatedly been measured by the guys on Slimdevices forum (and the Manufacturers engineers) as being "bit-perfect" i.e. the bits that are present in the Lossless data file can be measured as exactly the same exiting the SPDIF socket.

I always thought (and a multipage forum topic over on Slimdevices forums confirmed) that the main difference between the SB3 and, say, theTransporter when playing redbook CD was the quality of the Dac, as they both output "bit-perfect".

This was also confirmed by Sean Adams.

He DID talk about compromises up to a price point with the SB3, but none of them were to do with the digital bitstream exiting the SPDIF socket into your Dac.
Jitter has been measured EXTREMELY low with the SB3 when Replaygain and the digital volume control is switched off in software.

Most of the compromises were in the analogue domain as I recall.
Thats what I've read anyway.


And if the output to the Dac IS "bit-perfect"....
Wouldn't that mean that differences in sound are due to the DAC and/or be subjective anyway?

I upgraded my Dac by adding a beefier PSU, in this case the Dac responded well to it.
I'm still not convinced a add-on PSU for the SB3 would have anywhere near the same jump in sound quality.
Wouldn't do any harm though I supose ;-)

leo
18-11-2008, 18:50
I'm pleased your happy with the standard SB3, it is more than good enough for some people, unfortunately for people like me who's spent far too much time experimenting on this stuff you learn that not all SPDIF is equal.
Theres far too much for me to try and explain on here
In an ideal world it should all perform the same but unfortunately its not the case.
People who know me will tell you I'm honest with this stuff, if I spend a huge amount of time on any project and feel the results are either worse or turn out to be a waste of time I'll be the first to admit it;)

leo
18-11-2008, 18:55
Some sutff here http://www.audiocircle.com/circles/index.php?topic=45330.0

Covenant
18-11-2008, 19:19
Well I'm pleased I got myself a decent linear supply (made by Zanash, well known on other forums) but there is no way I would attempt any alterations to the innards of my SB3.
No doubt someone will come along soon offering to do mods. Its either that or save for a SB3+.

leo
18-11-2008, 19:27
Its one reason I've been holding off posting SB3 mods, its not something I'd recommend to a novice as theres a lot of working with SMD.
If your using an external dac apart from a better external supply its best to leave alone;)

For a later project I'm hoping to try out a Duet , mod it and run the dac I2S direct, this should be better than SPDIF

Gazjam
18-11-2008, 20:15
Hi Leo,

Yeah I know what your saying, but for redbook CD (as opposed to 24/96), theres more scope (pun) to improvement elsewhere in the chain, like the Dac, your speakers etc.
lots of folks have tried alternative PSUs and found no difference to their SB3, and I guess what works for some doesnt work for others...

Good link Leo, very informative.

Hey, heres something to give you a headache! :eyebrows:
Interesting read. (but a bit over my head though!!)


http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=53345

leo
18-11-2008, 20:48
Thing with us diyers is we aim to reach the best performance possible.
My dacs, pre-amps and some of the amps are diy so I tune those to as far as I can go

The transport used even with the Sabre based dac makes a difference

Interesting link, it shows me that a few don't understand how to use or to know what their looking for on the scope;)

BTW if looking at a square wave on the analogue out of a dac its common to see such pre and post ringing, this is down to the oversampling chip, some are worse than others, you'll see it with most OS based dacs where as on say a NOS dac it usually looks flat like a proper sqaure wave

popol_vuh
19-11-2008, 08:38
Are there any plans of putting USB connectivity in future versions of beresford? Silent PC + Beresford would, in that case, be able to just completely negate the need for CD player for some people.

USB is needed for this because, as far as i know, ASIO + USB is the only way to bypass windows' kernel mixer and achieve truly bit-perfect output with no resampling etc.

jandl100
19-11-2008, 22:53
Can someone give me a link to the Maplins PSU? - I fancy trying out on my ancient Mk3 Beresford. Ta. :)


Heres the chappie....

http://info.maplin.co.uk/Module.aspx?ModuleNo=48517


The maplins PS arrived today.

Zounds - but that's a good cheap upgrade for the Beresford Mk3 DAC ... everything more dynamic, faster and clearer. And I liked it before. I like it more now. Thanks, Gaz. :)

Stratmangler
19-11-2008, 23:52
The maplins PS arrived today.

Zounds - but that's a good cheap upgrade for the Beresford Mk3 DAC ... everything more dynamic, faster and clearer. And I liked it before. I like it more now. Thanks, Gaz. :)

Give it a good listen, then try the psu set to 13.5v.
I've been running my 6/3 at this input voltage for a while - be interesting to hear what you think.

Chris:)

Gazjam
20-11-2008, 13:43
I had the Maplin PSU running at 13.5V for a while.

I found it to act sort of like a "loudness" button, sound was more forward, even a little bit louder.

But...

after a while, I found it to be a bit overpowering, a bit "Cyrus" sounding if that makes sense?
A bit brash, I found subtleties were being lost, so I went back to 12V and found it to be better.

The sound might suit your system/sensibilities more though, so give it a go!

I tried this on my Mark 5, and the latest 6/4. Same results.
The PSU did NOTHING to the Mark 6/3 actually - I think Stan had modified the Power Circuitry on that one, made the Maplins PSU a bit redundant.

Works a treat on the 6/4 though! :)

SteveW
20-11-2008, 14:14
Righty....
Collected my newly delivered Mark6/4 from work (as quick as usual Stan..cheers!)...now an early dart back home to do a back to back comparison with my mark 6/3.
Am going to have the upgrade soon on the original...but curious to do an instant comparison anyway! Will report back.

As I've got several airport expresses (expressi?) I can connect two of them via optical and transmit itunes or via Airfoil for flac simutaneously, and thus listen to the same.
:door:

trailer
20-11-2008, 16:24
I nipped into Maplins this morning and got one.

The bloke behnd the counter asked what it was for, I said "A DAC".

He replied "A what?"

Anyway, I assured him it was the one I wanted and duly bought it.

And you know what? I think it does make the 6/4 sound better.

StanleyB
20-11-2008, 18:09
A funny thing has been happening to me. I have had three customers in the last two months who bought my DAC, sent it back for a refund, and then ordered the DAC again... :scratch:.

leo
20-11-2008, 18:20
A funny thing has been happening to me. I have had three customers in the last two months who bought my DAC, sent it back for a refund, and then ordered the DAC again... :scratch:.

Maybe they thought spending more money on another dac would improve performance, after trying a more expensive option they realize they made a mistake/not enough improvement so sent the more expensive one back too and brought another one of yours:eyebrows:

Strange hobby this Stan isn't it:confused:

StanleyB
20-11-2008, 18:37
Quoting from the other Stan: 'It certainly is'...
Reminds me of Steve on the wigwam who bought both my DAC and then a DAC1 off GSRAI. Guess which one hit the classified a few weeks later:eyebrows:.

leo
20-11-2008, 19:30
TBH Stan I've yet to hear any commercial dac in DAC1's price range that made me want to buy it, if I wasn't into diy and was looking around for a dac in the Dac1's price range I'd probably go for yours and spend the saving on other stuff

You certainly have to try a range of these higher priced dacs too though just to put the mind at rest, a lot of digital gear sounds wrong to my ears anyway so it makes it even harder trying to find something to suit

Primalsea
21-11-2008, 19:30
Quantum Slipstream - Sounds like slang for a small arsehole to me.

Anyway, I have usually found that using a stiff supply with a lower output impedance improves things. Among other things they recharge the filter caps faster.

Mike
21-11-2008, 19:55
Sounds like slang for a small arsehole to me.

:lol::rolleyes::rolleyes::lol: