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Thread: Here’s A Digital Conundrum

  1. #71
    Join Date: Jan 2008

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    Lol... Nothing I've heard so far

    Marco.
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  2. #72
    Join Date: Jan 2013

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    I'm Justin.

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    I had a Wadia using XILINX FPGAs more than 22 years ago.

    I thought it sounded pretty poor after a couple of weeks with it - it was a dealer loan.

    Just saying, like Whether the sound had much to do with the FPGAs I cannot say.
    "And it's lend me £10 and I'll buy you a drink. And mother wake me early in the morning."

  3. #73
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    Just remembering more - it was an X64. I think the FPGA was simply doing the filtering.

    I remember it as being clear and detailed but it had a quite an artificial sound to it. Poor is a bit harsh, really.

    It was actually about 26-27 years ago. The DAC was introduced in 1990.
    "And it's lend me £10 and I'll buy you a drink. And mother wake me early in the morning."

  4. #74
    Join Date: Oct 2008

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    FPGAs still need to be programmed, and all the magic works in software.
    Like choice of Dac chip not determining final sound quality, its all in the implememtation.
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  5. #75
    Join Date: Feb 2008

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    I think there is huge (potential) misunderstanding of what field programmable gate array FPGAs are vs a dedicated DAC chip or ASIC (application specific integrated circuit).

    An FPGA offers benefits to small developers and companies because they are flexible and a cost effective way of producing an integrated circuit device to perform a certain function....in low volumes. No tooling is required to make them (buy off the shelf) so costs are relatively low. The downside is they are not fully customisable and require in many instances external circuitry to add the required functions.

    ASICs on the other hand are designed to perform a specific function with little external circuits and be produced in large volumes for cost effectiveness. Tooling and development costs are much higher though and therefore the required investment....but they are much denser and can implement more than one function, also the ‘real estate’ required (physical PCB space) is typically much less.

    But here’s the important bit...neither approach is better than the other in terms of sound quality for the end user! Just because some low volume manufacturer starts touting an FPGA in their spec. does not mean it is going to sound any better than the latest Bur Brown or ESS chip.
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  6. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by NRG View Post
    I think there is huge (potential) misunderstanding of what field programmable gate array FPGAs are vs a dedicated DAC chip or ASIC (application specific integrated circuit).

    An FPGA offers benefits to small developers and companies because they are flexible and a cost effective way of producing an integrated circuit device to perform a certain function....in low volumes. No tooling is required to make them (buy off the shelf) so costs are relatively low. The downside is they are not fully customisable and require in many instances external circuitry to add the required functions.

    ASICs on the other hand are designed to perform a specific function with little external circuits and be produced in large volumes for cost effectiveness. Tooling and development costs are much higher though and therefore the required investment....but they are much denser and can implement more than one function, also the ‘real estate’ required (physical PCB space) is typically much less.

    But here’s the important bit...neither approach is better than the other in terms of sound quality for the end user! Just because some low volume manufacturer starts touting an FPGA in their spec. does not mean it is going to sound any better than the latest Bur Brown or ESS chip.
    True, you just need some half decent VHDL guys who know what they're doing to get a decent result.
    "And it's lend me £10 and I'll buy you a drink. And mother wake me early in the morning."

  7. #77
    Join Date: Oct 2008

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    Quote Originally Posted by User211 View Post
    True, you just need some half decent VHDL guys who know what they're doing to get a decent result.
    Check out Ted Smith....
    Saw Jaws in ‘75 at the Cinema...
    Star Wars in ‘77
    Close Encounters in ‘77
    Superman in ‘78
    Raiders in ‘81

    ...I’m doing the same thing with my Son (who’s 24)
    Only now getting the wisdom of my Dad and I’m 50 next birthday!

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