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Thread: My 2019 Update Thread - My final system I think.

  1. #21
    Join Date: Oct 2008

    Location: Glasgowshire

    Posts: 7,115
    I'm availableforweddingsAndBarmitzvas.

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    Next thing I was wanting to do was finalise my vinyl setup.
    Had one of Alan Firebottle's terrific valve output phono stages, but I had a "cunning plan" for my LP playback...

    My Dac has two i2s inputs, one of which was being used by the Oppo bluray player.
    So one spare.

    Why is this relevant to a phonostage?
    I sold the Firebottle phonostage here on AOS and put the proceeds towards a rather unique (I think) product from, again, PS Audio.

    They stopped production of these, but with my matching dac it was a no brainer to try and pick one up.
    Was lucky enough to get one from the last shipment sent to the UK, phew!

    The Nuwave Phono converter.

    Heavy solid thing, about the width of a Cyrus box but half the height.
    Sits quite inconspicuous on the rack, quite small in front profile but very deep:


    Nice bit of kit this, some proper caps in there and a toroid transformer for the power supply:

    As well as a standard phonostage analogue out to your amp, it has a few extra tricks up its sleeve, or rather on its back panel:


    Digital Outputs.
    As well as the normal analogue out to your amp it can convert your analogue to digital 'on the fly' and send it to the Dac from it's digital outputs. In my case I take advantage of the i2s connection as my dac has the matching input.
    You'll notice it has a set of Phono inputs AND a second analogue input?
    That means anything you plug into it, FM Tuner, cassette deck or even a Reel to Reel, can be digitised and sent to the Dac, OR (from the USB output) sent to your laptop/pc as a digital file copy.
    Pretty cool.

    You have a lot of control over the digital side of things through its menu system, where you can output the digital as 24/192 PCM or single/double rate DSD.

    So double rate DSD file copies of your records, nice.
    PS Audio recommends 24/96, but haven't had a chance to play with this feature yet.

    From the Menu you can:
    Set playback to mono/stereo and flip the phase, for those odd recordings that don't sound right to you.


    Set the digital output - DSD or PCM as well as toggle the USB output on or off (reduces electrical noise apparently)


    Further tweak the output settings:


    You can adjust the gain to suit your vinyl setup (there are also dipswitches on the back panel for cartridge loading)


    Theres other things in the menu, like adjust brightness, check firmware version, set display timeout and some other stuff.
    One thing I'd like to be able to do is dim the PS Audio logo like you can do with the dac, its very bright!

    Sits quite neat next to the turntables PSU and under the deck itself, matches the Dac of course.


    Chuffed I was able to get one before they were gone for good, don't see them up for grabs 2nd hand much.
    A no brainer with the i2s connection to the dac, (which sounds really really good) as well as the facility to digitise my LP collection, which is a project I'll get into when I have the time.

    Its well reviewed too, so don't need to look elsewhere and can call vinyl done.
    https://darko.audio/2013/11/ps-audio...pre-amplifier/
    https://darko.audio/2014/01/ps-audio...ital-playback/

    http://www.theabsolutesound.com/arti...ono-converter/

    All good stuff.
    Last edited by Gazjam; 02-01-2019 at 17:34.
    Have Hifi n stuff.

  2. #22
    Join Date: Apr 2010

    Location: Bristol, since 1978. Current house since 1996!

    Posts: 477
    I'm Chris.

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    Brilliant! Wish I'd thought of that (no LPs now!)
    watch out for all the responses from die-hard valve/phono fans?
    If you want to reduce the glare, cut out a square of cellophane -or similar - to cover the sign?
    Chris.

  3. #23
    Join Date: Feb 2013

    Location: W Lothian

    Posts: 54,231
    I'm Grant.

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    Trust gaz to go left field. I bravo
    Regards,
    Grant .... ؠ

    I've said it before and I'll say it again: democracy simply-doesn't-work
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  4. #24
    Join Date: Oct 2012

    Location: The Black Country

    Posts: 4,780
    I'm Alan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gazjam View Post
    ..... and bought a PS Audio Directstream, great sounding bit of kit and unusual in that it runs from an FPGA, not a traditional Dac chip.
    As such, its software programmable and its creator Ted Smith writes new improved firmware which PS Audio gives away for free.
    Now that is a brilliant choice Gaz, another manufacturer going down the FPGA route with unique software and filtering.
    Even more reason to get up to yours for a listen

  5. #25
    Join Date: Oct 2012

    Location: The Black Country

    Posts: 4,780
    I'm Alan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jandl100 View Post
    I want multiple co-ax and TOSLINK inputs!! What's so hard about that?
    Buy a Bel Canto, at least they have two SPDIF inputs.
    On the other hand just buy another Topping and select inputs on the RVC, much cheaper

  6. #26
    Join Date: Oct 2008

    Location: Glasgowshire

    Posts: 7,115
    I'm availableforweddingsAndBarmitzvas.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebottle View Post
    Now that is a brilliant choice Gaz, another manufacturer going down the FPGA route with unique software and filtering.
    Even more reason to get up to yours for a listen
    Absolutely!

    Be getting the Scottish Mafia (and honorary members) in for a get together when the last of the upgrades are in place.
    Be good to meet you Alan.
    Last edited by Gazjam; 03-01-2019 at 16:58.
    Have Hifi n stuff.

  7. #27
    Join Date: May 2008

    Location: A Strangely Isolated Place in Suffolk with far away trains passing by...

    Posts: 14,556
    I'm David.

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    Extra boxes over this neat solution, but decent A-D converters must be around, for the pro market if little else, that the phono stage could be plugged into? Meridian used to make one and a friend uses one from his beloved Luxman tuner to his digital preamp - he went mad on interconnects from Transparent though
    Tear down these walls; Cut the ties that held me
    Crying out at the top of my voice; Tell me now if you can hear me

  8. #28
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 24,787
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DSJR View Post
    Extra boxes over this neat solution, but decent A-D converters must be around, for the pro market if little else
    They've been around for years. I've still got a Kenwood one from back when I had a brief flirtation with Laserdisc.
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Technics SLP1200 CD Player * Nelson Pass DCB1 Pre amp / Krell KSA50S Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *


    'You fool! To think that your ape-brain could contain the full knowledge of the Krell!'

  9. #29
    Join Date: Dec 2014

    Location: UK, East Midlands

    Posts: 1,424
    I'm Mike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DSJR View Post
    Extra boxes over this neat solution, but decent A-D converters must be around, for the pro market if little else, that the phono stage could be plugged into? Meridian used to make one and a friend uses one from his beloved Luxman tuner to his digital preamp - he went mad on interconnects from Transparent though
    Yep - I use a Focusrite Saffire Pro24 mixer for LP ripping - does a fabulous job
    Designed for musicians and has A-D and D-A converters and a wide range of digital and analogue in/outs:
    https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews...saffire-pro-24


    Dead cheap now on ebay ....
    If you don't like my potatoes - please don't dig up my vine!

  10. #30
    Join Date: Nov 2018

    Location: Grimsby

    Posts: 114
    I'm David.

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    If you did not want to digitise your turntable signal would I be correct in assuming your turntable interconnect would go in the phono rca's and out to your amp would be with those balanced outputs?
    I have heard PS Audio at a show, was very impressed and would have loved to hear their monos in isolation.

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