I’ve been modifying my Gigaworks Ebay DAC and think that the results is really showing. The second opamp is completely removed, the filter is changed to Cirrus Logics filter example from their prototype board and the first opamp is replaced with GD-Audio’s Earth discrete opamp. It sounds absolutely marvelous. Here’s the before and after graphs.
Mods your Pioneer PD S-505 CD Player for better sound quality
So I bought this Pioneer PD S-505 for $40 to test how good audio quality I’m able to squeeze out by modifying it. But It will not be just the standard subjective judgment of improvement but also measurements. Back in 2000, you had to pay about $400 for it. It uses the stable platter which means you have to put the CD in upside down. So let’s get going.
After using Spotify for a couple of days, I must say that they almost nailed it. And I have never seen as much entusiasm about a new service among people of so different age groups. The Mac client is really nice (and fast!) This is something the music business should have come up with a long time ago. I think I bought about five songs on iTunes total. I like the idea of “owning” my music, or at least own the piece of plastic it comes on. But the chear joy of being able to just search and ad a shitload of music and start listening is exhilarating. But I have a couple of gripes…
Hopefully they will increase the bitrate. There is a market for people that want the highest possible quality and are prepared to pay for it. Here’s a possibility to actually get better quality than CD without having to resort to half-assed attempts like SACD. Yeah, I know you need a lot of bandwidth, but I live in Sweden and have had 100mbit connection for years.
Many months ago I bought a DAC to use with my computer in the bedroom to connect to my Musical Fidelity X-Can V2 for some headphone listening. I have used it, but not been impressed by it at all. But when surfing around, I got into this crazy page about installing a tube amp output on CD players and DACs. And he listed the cheap one I have as one of the best DACs he ever heard. The guy bypasses the output stage and replaces it with a simple tube buffer/amp. That got me interested.
So finally my new ProAc Response 2.5 clone playing music. And how they play! I got myself a new Class-A amplifier to have something nice to drive them with. At first they sounded a bit short on the bass side, but now after about 20 hours of listening, the bass starts to improve. I’ve never believed in the “burn-in” of speakers, but I have to say I’ve been mistaken.
I invited some friends over for a music listening party. A lot of records and an even larger amount of beer made for a beautiful evening.
At the same time I ordered my new amplifier, I also ordered a new DVD player with DVD-Audio and SACD playing capability. So I rush out to get my hands on a SACD record, but the only one I could find was the slightly overplayed Dark side of the moon by Pink Floyd. But it was a good test record because I have two different mastering versions on cd, so comparing was easy. And to my surprise the CD (actually Flac played through my Squeezebox) sounded better than the SACD one! So I had to check that the player didn’t play the normal cd layer, but no, it played the SACD layer. The singing voices on the SACD sounded muffled compared to the Japanese pressing of the CD. Also the pinpointing of instrument placements in the stereo image was not as good an coherent from the SACD. The player a Pioneer 696 is a low budget player so it could be it. But I’ll crank up the manual and check so I haven’t done something stupid with the settings.
More testing tomorrow…