Hearing loss and DACs

Jimmymac

Registered
Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 31, 2021
Messages
13
More  
Main Amp
Yaqin MC-13S
Computer Audio
Lovino
DAC
BluDento BLT-2
Front Speakers
Klipshorn
Subwoofers
Klipsh 100
Streaming Equipment
Compute
Streaming Subscriptions
Amazon Music HD
I have been a music lover for over 60 years. My military career offered me the chance to try out a lot equipment and I even sold top end equipment when I retired. My career also impacted my hearing and my high frequency hearing peaks around 8kz. Music can still sound great even with that handicap. My question is if I would enjoy a good DAC with my hearing or would it be a waste of money? I have the small Topping but it does not do the job that some of the more expensive and better chipped DACs can do. I seek advice before I spend my money.
 

ddude003

AV Addict
Joined
Aug 13, 2017
Messages
1,397
Location
Somewhere Northeast of Kansas City Missouri
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium TubePre (2 channel+sub)
Main Amp
McIntosh MC152 SS Amp (2 channel)
Additional Amp
Yamaha RX-A850 Pro (the other 5 channels lol)
Computer Audio
MacBook Pro, Custom i7 7700k De-lid 2xAsus1080ti GFX Audirvana Studio, Hang Loose Convolver, Pulsar Massive & 8200, LiquidSonics, SoX
DAC
Chord Electronics Ltd. Qutest
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Sony UBP-X700 /M Ultra HD 4K HDR & PS5
Front Speakers
Martin Logan ElectroMotion ESL
Center Channel Speaker
Martin Logan Motion C2
Surround Speakers
Martin Logan Motion 4
Surround Back Speakers
Martin Logan Motion 4 (yes, another set of these)
Subwoofers
Martin Logan Dynamo 700
Other Speakers or Equipment
Cifte 12AU7 NOS & Genalex Gold Lion Tubes in Pre
Video Display Device
Samsung The Premiere LSP7T UST Laser Projector
Screen
Elite Screens Aeon CLR3 0.8 Gain 103-inch
Remote Control
PrimaLuna, Lumin iApp, Samsung & Yamaha
Streaming Equipment
Netgear Nighthawk S8000 Streaming Switch, Lumin U1 Mini Streamer Transport
Streaming Subscriptions
QoBuz Studio Premier, Amazon Prime & Netflix
Other Equipment
ThrowRug, SaddleBlankets, WideBand & Bass Traps...
Look for a local or online dealer that will let you do a "try and buy" of a couple of different DACs... My own experience leads me to believe that all DACs do not sound alike... In my system, I look for a source (DAC) that is crisp, clean and incisive... You won't know how good or bad they sound until they are running in your own system, in your own room... Good luck in your search...
 
Last edited:

Jimmymac

Registered
Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 31, 2021
Messages
13
More  
Main Amp
Yaqin MC-13S
Computer Audio
Lovino
DAC
BluDento BLT-2
Front Speakers
Klipshorn
Subwoofers
Klipsh 100
Streaming Equipment
Compute
Streaming Subscriptions
Amazon Music HD
Like what, specifically?
Are you talking features or sound quality?
I am talking sound quality. My Topping base model sounds like it is doing it’s job, but as I read the reviews on some of the more expensive models, especially the Topping 90SE (I think) the veviewers talk about the tremendous improvement you can get based on the chips they use etc. IF an upgraded DAC would make a significant difference to me, given my high frequency loss, I want to give it a try. I don’t want to buy sizzle instead of steak, as advertising would have you do, but I have always tried to get the best sound I could. If my hearing problems make this a waste of time, I will shift my search to finding a better grill or smoker. BUT if I can experience more enjoyment in my restricted hearing range I want to do that. I’m not asking for WHICH DAC I should buy, just if a more sophisticated DAC is worth investing my limited fixed income in.
 

Jimmymac

Registered
Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 31, 2021
Messages
13
More  
Main Amp
Yaqin MC-13S
Computer Audio
Lovino
DAC
BluDento BLT-2
Front Speakers
Klipshorn
Subwoofers
Klipsh 100
Streaming Equipment
Compute
Streaming Subscriptions
Amazon Music HD
Look for a local or online dealer that will let you do a "try and buy" of a couple of different DACs... My own experience leads me to believe that all DACs do not sound alike... In my system, I look for a source (DAC) that is crisp, clean and incisive... You won't know how good or bad they sound until they are running in your own system, in your own room... Good luck in your search...
I live in a very rural area. Our mall is the small Walmart in the next town over. Charlotte or Raleigh might have such places but I am not sure if they have “try and buy” places that would let me keep it ong enough to save up the gas money to take it back. Do you have any on-line companies that do this kind of thing?
 

ddude003

AV Addict
Joined
Aug 13, 2017
Messages
1,397
Location
Somewhere Northeast of Kansas City Missouri
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium TubePre (2 channel+sub)
Main Amp
McIntosh MC152 SS Amp (2 channel)
Additional Amp
Yamaha RX-A850 Pro (the other 5 channels lol)
Computer Audio
MacBook Pro, Custom i7 7700k De-lid 2xAsus1080ti GFX Audirvana Studio, Hang Loose Convolver, Pulsar Massive & 8200, LiquidSonics, SoX
DAC
Chord Electronics Ltd. Qutest
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Sony UBP-X700 /M Ultra HD 4K HDR & PS5
Front Speakers
Martin Logan ElectroMotion ESL
Center Channel Speaker
Martin Logan Motion C2
Surround Speakers
Martin Logan Motion 4
Surround Back Speakers
Martin Logan Motion 4 (yes, another set of these)
Subwoofers
Martin Logan Dynamo 700
Other Speakers or Equipment
Cifte 12AU7 NOS & Genalex Gold Lion Tubes in Pre
Video Display Device
Samsung The Premiere LSP7T UST Laser Projector
Screen
Elite Screens Aeon CLR3 0.8 Gain 103-inch
Remote Control
PrimaLuna, Lumin iApp, Samsung & Yamaha
Streaming Equipment
Netgear Nighthawk S8000 Streaming Switch, Lumin U1 Mini Streamer Transport
Streaming Subscriptions
QoBuz Studio Premier, Amazon Prime & Netflix
Other Equipment
ThrowRug, SaddleBlankets, WideBand & Bass Traps...
I live in a very rural area. Our mall is the small Walmart in the next town over. Charlotte or Raleigh might have such places but I am not sure if they have “try and buy” places that would let me keep it ong enough to save up the gas money to take it back. Do you have any on-line companies that do this kind of thing?
I think you will have to live with an on-line outfit that will offer a 30, 45 or 60 day return... Buy it, try it, return it, rinse & repeat... Keep a close eye on the small print of the return policies... Since it seems your interest is in the Topping 90SE you might see what Amazon's return policy is... Others might include Crutchfield, Upscale Audio, Moon Audio, and google is your frenemy...
A more sophisticated DAC may be "worth" investing your limited fixed income in... And of course, you are the arbiter of what is "worth" what...
 

AJ Soundfield

Active Member
Joined
May 21, 2017
Messages
394
Location
Tampa
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
Yamaha RXA800, Denon AVR-X4500, Lexicon MC10
Main Amp
Hypex Ncores
Additional Amp
Abacus Ampino, Triode Corp TRV-35SE
Computer Audio
AudioEngine D2
DAC
NAD M51
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Yamaha BDA1010
Front Speakers
Soundfields
Center Channel Speaker
Soundfields, KEF Q150
Surround Speakers
Soundfields
Surround Back Speakers
Revel M16
Subwoofers
Soundfield Cardioid Rythmik Servo
Other Speakers or Equipment
AVA ABX
I have the small Topping but it does not do the job that some of the more expensive and better chipped DACs can do.
It does the exact same job as the expensive DACs, sound wise. No evidence exists to the contrary for good reason. Claiming to be able to leap tall buildings and bend spoons is easy, demonstrating so is not. However, that doesn't mean price doesn't have a large impact on (audiophile type) minds. On the contrary, there is a large body of scientific evidence to support (audiophiles et al) spending more on DACs etc https://www.pnas.org/doi/10.1073/pnas.0706929105
If you want a DAC with a real audible difference, get one with EQ.
 

JStewart

Senior AV Addict
Supporter
Joined
Dec 5, 2017
Messages
1,991
Location
Central FL
There is also a pretty good used market for DACs.
Find what you like then buy it for a better price. If/when you decide to sell it you’ll be more likely to recoup what you spent.

I am talking sound quality. My Topping base model sounds like it is doing it’s job, but as I read the reviews on some of the more expensive models, especially the Topping 90SE (I think) the veviewers talk about the tremendous improvement you can get based on the chips they use etc.

Despite marketing claims to the contrary, electronics will, unless just outright broken, make a small difference in sound quality as compared to your speakers, room, and proper equalization.
If you haven’t done so already, you might consider starting there first.
 

Jimmymac

Registered
Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 31, 2021
Messages
13
More  
Main Amp
Yaqin MC-13S
Computer Audio
Lovino
DAC
BluDento BLT-2
Front Speakers
Klipshorn
Subwoofers
Klipsh 100
Streaming Equipment
Compute
Streaming Subscriptions
Amazon Music HD
I have appreciated the comments and suggestion, but no one has addressed my concern about my limited hearing range. Is that because it’s under the won’t know till you try category. Is anyone reading this posting a person with high frequency loss that can comment on how better DACs can impact the quality of what you CAN actually hear?
 

Sacenti

Member
Joined
Jul 2, 2017
Messages
59
I have similar high-pitched hearing loss as you and I confess that I adapted to this sound characteristic after 2 years... I agree with AJ: "If you want a DAC with a real audible difference, buy one with EQ". IMHO the problem is not the DAC but the recording concept used in the style of music you listen to... streaming popular music and other genres suffer from the noticeable compression and equalization preferred by the sound producer... I hear more inaccuracies of the recordings than the inaccuracies of the equipment... I'm more satisfied with being more deaf now, so the inaccuracies of the recordings have been minimized and I suffer less now... it's a new reality to get used to the hearing that I have atrophied in one ear.. Don't invest in equipment if your sound is good...good sound doesn't age...invest in more accurate recordings, they are rare...
 

highstream

Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2018
Messages
53
I have appreciated the comments and suggestion, but no one has addressed my concern about my limited hearing range. Is that because it’s under the won’t know till you try category. Is anyone reading this posting a person with high frequency loss that can comment on how better DACs can impact the quality of what you CAN actually hear?

Without knowing your specifics, the answer is usually a definite yes. Not being able to hear above 8k Hz is not unusual as one ages. Of course, you won’t hear quantitatively on the high end what someone younger with better hearing, or someone with a hearing aid does, but the brain fills in a lot (trained listeners can tell if the high end of gear is extended well above 20 kHz, even though the best of human hearing doesn’t go beyond that point). I’ve been listening to music for even longer and don't think mine is over about 9-9.5 kHz, if that, yet am able to not only appreciate a high quality dac, but also can hear differences between dacs, as well as other equipment. More important in all this is your musical experience, especially listening to live acoustical music and, if you were lucky to have done so, having played a musical instrument when you were young (e.g., engraining a sense of the proper pitch of instruments).

For additional answers to your question, I’d suggest 1) PS Audio’s Paul McGowan’s video reply to this question at https://www.psaudio.com/askpaulvideo/how-age-affects-hearing/, and 2) widening your probing and asking to include the What’s Best Forums site, where a lot of good listeners and music lovers hang out.
 
Last edited:

Coy Ramsey

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2019
Messages
76
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
Yamaha Aventage RX-A660 AVR
Other Amp
4 Yamaha WX50 amps for MusicCast distributed audio
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Sony X700
Front Speakers
Elac Debut 2.0 BS5.2
Center Channel Speaker
SVS Ultra center to replace Elac Debut 2.0 CC5.2
Surround Speakers
Polk in-wall
Rear Height Speakers
Polk in-ceiling
Subwoofers
RSL Speedwoofer 10s
Other Speakers or Equipment
Episode ceiling speakers for 4 distributed zones
Video Display Device
Samsung
Screen
65"
Remote Control
Logitech Harmony
Streaming Subscriptions
Spotify Prem, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video
Other Equipment
Episode in-ceiling for distributed audio into 4 zones
I have similar hearing issues plus tinnitis so, maybe, sharing my experiences will be of help. I just cannot distinguish between the subtle differences that many audiophiles claim to hear; eg amps, DACs, wires/cables, etc, etc. Even trying out different speakers back/back show little improvement. I have been surprised a few times at changes that I can actually hear however. Good hearing aids and EQ changes DO make an audible difference, even to me. I was surprised recently when I switched from Spotify (free) to Amazon HD streaming but only on my decent 5.1 HT system (not on distributed audio thru ceiling speakers via MusicCast). From my experiences it takes a "significant" change for me to hear a difference and often even these differences get lost in the enjoyment of the music/moment if you don't think about it. Bottom line for me is that a DAC change won't matter BUT if you experiment with some device with EQ it will tune your hearing/brain to detect more subtle audible differences and you'll be on the road to the proverbial audiophile rabbithole.
 

highstream

Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2018
Messages
53
If the OP has tinnitus… That’s very different than age-related hearing degradation.
 

Seeker-Smith

New Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2021
Messages
4
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
Linn Wakonda
Main Amp
3 X Linn LK-140
Additional Amp
Linn Klout
Computer Audio
Ipad
DAC
Beresford TC-7535 with Dorado PSU Enhancer
Front Speakers
Linn Ninka
Subwoofers
SVS Micro 3000
Streaming Equipment
Airport Express
Streaming Subscriptions
Apple Music
I have been a music lover for over 60 years. My military career offered me the chance to try out a lot equipment and I even sold top end equipment when I retired. My career also impacted my hearing and my high frequency hearing peaks around 8kz. Music can still sound great even with that handicap. My question is if I would enjoy a good DAC with my hearing or would it be a waste of money? I have the small Topping but it does not do the job that some of the more expensive and better chipped DACs can do. I seek advice before I spend my money.
It will make no difference sound quality wise. Assuming your Topping is current like a D10. A D10 and up are totally transparent.
 

highstream

Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2018
Messages
53
If transparency is the OP’s priority, then yes. If not, and it’s not for a lot of listeners, myself included, it’s not only not #1 but is unfortunately often inversely related to musical enjoyment. It’s seemed in recent years the trend among developers has been to play to the former, under the tonal catchword “neutral.”. As someone who starts with tone, a bit of warmth for unconscious emotional connection, it took me awhile to realize many, if not most, groove to hardware or audiophile “sound effects’ first of all. Different ears, brains and musical experience. Whatever works.
 

Seeker-Smith

New Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2021
Messages
4
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
Linn Wakonda
Main Amp
3 X Linn LK-140
Additional Amp
Linn Klout
Computer Audio
Ipad
DAC
Beresford TC-7535 with Dorado PSU Enhancer
Front Speakers
Linn Ninka
Subwoofers
SVS Micro 3000
Streaming Equipment
Airport Express
Streaming Subscriptions
Apple Music
If transparency is the OP’s priority, then yes. If not, and it’s not for a lot of listeners, myself included, it’s not only not #1 but is unfortunately often inversely related to musical enjoyment. It’s seemed in recent years the trend among developers has been to play to the former, under the tonal catchword “neutral.”. As someone who starts with tone, a bit of warmth for unconscious emotional connection, it took me awhile to realize many, if not most, groove to hardware or audiophile “sound effects’ first of all. Different ears, brains and musical experience. Whatever works.
Try a blind test. Science is not on your side.
 

ddude003

AV Addict
Joined
Aug 13, 2017
Messages
1,397
Location
Somewhere Northeast of Kansas City Missouri
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium TubePre (2 channel+sub)
Main Amp
McIntosh MC152 SS Amp (2 channel)
Additional Amp
Yamaha RX-A850 Pro (the other 5 channels lol)
Computer Audio
MacBook Pro, Custom i7 7700k De-lid 2xAsus1080ti GFX Audirvana Studio, Hang Loose Convolver, Pulsar Massive & 8200, LiquidSonics, SoX
DAC
Chord Electronics Ltd. Qutest
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Sony UBP-X700 /M Ultra HD 4K HDR & PS5
Front Speakers
Martin Logan ElectroMotion ESL
Center Channel Speaker
Martin Logan Motion C2
Surround Speakers
Martin Logan Motion 4
Surround Back Speakers
Martin Logan Motion 4 (yes, another set of these)
Subwoofers
Martin Logan Dynamo 700
Other Speakers or Equipment
Cifte 12AU7 NOS & Genalex Gold Lion Tubes in Pre
Video Display Device
Samsung The Premiere LSP7T UST Laser Projector
Screen
Elite Screens Aeon CLR3 0.8 Gain 103-inch
Remote Control
PrimaLuna, Lumin iApp, Samsung & Yamaha
Streaming Equipment
Netgear Nighthawk S8000 Streaming Switch, Lumin U1 Mini Streamer Transport
Streaming Subscriptions
QoBuz Studio Premier, Amazon Prime & Netflix
Other Equipment
ThrowRug, SaddleBlankets, WideBand & Bass Traps...
Might I suggest that the OP have a look at this little chart https://alexiy.nl/eq_chart/ and see what he might be hearing below 8kHz and missing above 8kHz... If you have some of your own music on your computer that is CD quality or above, you might try a utility like SoX to add some filtering and EQ to see if that makes any difference to you on your current system... Archimago has a few articles reviewing some DACs, upscaling and filtering with Sox... BTY SoX is free...
 

Coy Ramsey

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2019
Messages
76
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
Yamaha Aventage RX-A660 AVR
Other Amp
4 Yamaha WX50 amps for MusicCast distributed audio
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Sony X700
Front Speakers
Elac Debut 2.0 BS5.2
Center Channel Speaker
SVS Ultra center to replace Elac Debut 2.0 CC5.2
Surround Speakers
Polk in-wall
Rear Height Speakers
Polk in-ceiling
Subwoofers
RSL Speedwoofer 10s
Other Speakers or Equipment
Episode ceiling speakers for 4 distributed zones
Video Display Device
Samsung
Screen
65"
Remote Control
Logitech Harmony
Streaming Subscriptions
Spotify Prem, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video
Other Equipment
Episode in-ceiling for distributed audio into 4 zones
If you order another DAC from Crutchfield, in Virginia, I believe that you have up to 60 days at home trial period to decide whether it's an improvement.
Audio Advice, in Raleigh, has a at-home trial as well but may not be the same length. Both offer on-line advice and help as well.
 

dhai

Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2018
Messages
21
Location
Austria
I would also suggest to try a "better" dac yourself. Give it a few days of warmup, and several listening sessions to "average" varying mood.

A tinnitus is different from HF hearing loss, creating IMD even at low level listening, and very annoying at higher levels. HF hearing loss is easier to adjust to, since we adapt. Also, a nice listening impression is often caused by successful comparison of reproduced music to initial hearing of same, and both are influenced by the HF attenuation.

My own impression after buying a simple Topping E50 dac is a loss of transparency and dynamics, compared to higher quality stuff, even in the midrange. Bass and lower midrange sounds nice to me.
It seems that power supply and analog output stage make a difference similar to everywhere else in the chain. Of course this depends on the rest of your chain, including room acoustics.
 

ddude003

AV Addict
Joined
Aug 13, 2017
Messages
1,397
Location
Somewhere Northeast of Kansas City Missouri
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium TubePre (2 channel+sub)
Main Amp
McIntosh MC152 SS Amp (2 channel)
Additional Amp
Yamaha RX-A850 Pro (the other 5 channels lol)
Computer Audio
MacBook Pro, Custom i7 7700k De-lid 2xAsus1080ti GFX Audirvana Studio, Hang Loose Convolver, Pulsar Massive & 8200, LiquidSonics, SoX
DAC
Chord Electronics Ltd. Qutest
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Sony UBP-X700 /M Ultra HD 4K HDR & PS5
Front Speakers
Martin Logan ElectroMotion ESL
Center Channel Speaker
Martin Logan Motion C2
Surround Speakers
Martin Logan Motion 4
Surround Back Speakers
Martin Logan Motion 4 (yes, another set of these)
Subwoofers
Martin Logan Dynamo 700
Other Speakers or Equipment
Cifte 12AU7 NOS & Genalex Gold Lion Tubes in Pre
Video Display Device
Samsung The Premiere LSP7T UST Laser Projector
Screen
Elite Screens Aeon CLR3 0.8 Gain 103-inch
Remote Control
PrimaLuna, Lumin iApp, Samsung & Yamaha
Streaming Equipment
Netgear Nighthawk S8000 Streaming Switch, Lumin U1 Mini Streamer Transport
Streaming Subscriptions
QoBuz Studio Premier, Amazon Prime & Netflix
Other Equipment
ThrowRug, SaddleBlankets, WideBand & Bass Traps...
Here is an interesting article about the how's and why's of DACs... Do they all sound the same??? No... Because, with all complex electronic devices that have many varying components that create an entire device, a DAC... Because no one builds their DACs the same as others... And because science... Test measurements reveal differences in the various complex devices... https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...derstanding-digital-audio-measurements.10523/

If the source of your signal chain (read DAC in this case) has issues then those issues will only be magnified as your preamp, amplifier, speakers and room do their thing...
 
Last edited:

dhai

Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2018
Messages
21
Location
Austria
I respect measurements and their explanation (thank you for the link, ddude003), received formal training at university, designed and use test gear daily for loudspeaker development and room acoustics evaluation.
But I am also frustrated by the fact that measured results do not tell the whole story, and disbelieve the "absoluteness" of related performance criteria.

The amplifier and DAC purchased based on test results
(https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/topping-pa5-review-amplifier.28512/
)
did not deliver sonic nirvana as one might believe after reading some favorite reviews.

At least for me, and some others, reflected in my comments on the Topping PA-5 amplifier's sound
(https://www.avnirvana.com/threads/topping-balanced-pa5-amplifier.10368/#post-79080).

My hearing seems so different from an AP analyzer that I would even buy something that measures so-so
but sounds great :)
 

AJ Soundfield

Active Member
Joined
May 21, 2017
Messages
394
Location
Tampa
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
Yamaha RXA800, Denon AVR-X4500, Lexicon MC10
Main Amp
Hypex Ncores
Additional Amp
Abacus Ampino, Triode Corp TRV-35SE
Computer Audio
AudioEngine D2
DAC
NAD M51
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Yamaha BDA1010
Front Speakers
Soundfields
Center Channel Speaker
Soundfields, KEF Q150
Surround Speakers
Soundfields
Surround Back Speakers
Revel M16
Subwoofers
Soundfield Cardioid Rythmik Servo
Other Speakers or Equipment
AVA ABX
My hearing seems so different from an AP analyzer that I would even buy something that measures so-so
but sounds great :)
Your "hearing" can only be tested by a valid listening test, aka a controlled one, where your eyes, knowledge, biases, reviews, pricetags etc, etc aren't doing the "hearing". An AP doesn't test for "hearing". An fMRI can somewhat test for what is "heard" seeing a Topping etc https://www.pnas.org/doi/10.1073/pnas.0706929105
https://www.science.org/content/article/million-dollar-strads-fall-modern-violins-blind-sound-check
https://gap.hks.harvard.edu/orchestrating-impartiality-impact-“blind”-auditions-female-musicians
I typically don't post in threads started by folks with 3 posts "curious" about DAC "sound" as that is a well established fishing vessel.
No proof can or will be offered as evidence other than "I heard this, that and Santa Claus, along with many people". But others are reading, some who might have grown past that and understand basic word and phrase meanings like "hearing" and "listening", vs say "experiencing".

cheers,
 

dhai

Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2018
Messages
21
Location
Austria
Hello Mr. AJ,

please excuse my lacking English vocabulary, I'm natively German speaking. And thank you, followed such and similar debates for a while. Coming from a family of string players, your strad link is interesting. Read even some where carbon based vioins were rated better than wooden. We are all living human beings, with different experiences and expectations, and experience similar things differently in different situations (eg picknick versa restaurant?). I am aware that my experience varies depending on focus, mood, etc, while listening. Maybe in a few years I advance to a perspective similar to yours, who knows?

I never got introduced to Santa Claus ... but my point is simple: to see if something fits your expectations, try it out by yourself, don't rely on anything else. And: doing this takes time, because after a while of use we experience the sound of components different from initial.

I can fully understand that people are fed up with super expensive "high-end" gear, that is to be replaced by even more expensive "so much better" stuff after only a few years. After using tons of such during 40 years, I am not interested what it is that drives my speakers, or how much it costs. I want to enjoy recordings.

Fact is that I listened to the Topping combo for some months in 2 different environments, with several loudspeakers, and never enjoyed the sound. Some others share that impression. Therefore I conclude it is not for me, and Audio Precision type measurements do not tell me the whole story

Cheers,
David
 

AJ Soundfield

Active Member
Joined
May 21, 2017
Messages
394
Location
Tampa
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
Yamaha RXA800, Denon AVR-X4500, Lexicon MC10
Main Amp
Hypex Ncores
Additional Amp
Abacus Ampino, Triode Corp TRV-35SE
Computer Audio
AudioEngine D2
DAC
NAD M51
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Yamaha BDA1010
Front Speakers
Soundfields
Center Channel Speaker
Soundfields, KEF Q150
Surround Speakers
Soundfields
Surround Back Speakers
Revel M16
Subwoofers
Soundfield Cardioid Rythmik Servo
Other Speakers or Equipment
AVA ABX
Fact is that I listened to the Topping combo for some months in 2 different environments, with several loudspeakers, and never enjoyed the sound. Some others share that impression. Therefore I conclude it is not for me, and Audio Precision type measurements do not tell me the whole story
That's exactly my point. The AP measures only the electrical output of the device under test, such as a Topping etc. (same for an Earthworks or Umik measuring soundwaves)
It doesn't measure you and some others.

cheers
 

DanDan

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Mar 10, 2018
Messages
740
8K is plenty. Remember AM Radio is 4K. Also your HF rolloff is probably not sudden.
IMO different DACs will sound quite different to you if you have the time and patience to assess them. That said Ethan Winer did a converter comparison way back which illustrated there there was no obvious difference between a SoundBlaster, a medium quality recording converter and very high end Pro DAC https://ethanwiner.com/converters.html
 
Top Bottom