DAC 2496 (AK4393) DAC KIT With CS8416+AK4393+5532 - Page 214 - diyAudio
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Old 1st October 2012, 06:16 PM   #2131
bcmbob is offline bcmbob  United States
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Thanks,

A little HJ but you might be interested in latest developments here.
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Old 1st October 2012, 06:36 PM   #2132
ch33ta is offline ch33ta  Croatia
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I know ESS chips are good, but IMHO nothing spectacular compared to the CS4398 I've been using...
As I mentioned before, spdif source, power supply and output stage will have the biggest effect on the sound - dac chip is last on that list...
Another reason I'm sticking to CS4398 is it's relatively high output -6,7Vpp (~2,3Vrms), and it drives low impedance headphones with no problem
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Old 1st October 2012, 09:08 PM   #2133
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qusp View Post
I do have to commend Dario
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qusp View Post
though, the BOM at least sticks mostly to existing values,
Sure, the goal was to obtain best sound from the actual project.

The only correction is the correct LPF for AK4396.

In fact my updgrade BOM is simply an higly (soundwise) optimized BOM.

Quote:
Originally Posted by qusp View Post
many upgrades consist of quadrupling any smoothing cap on the boardb and adding randomly chosen bypass caps, making every decoupling cap boutique film, using as wide bandwidth opamp as possible etc etc. all the same,
Not my BOM... sorry

I've reduced several elcos value, not raised...

For bypasses I've used X7R ceramics and industrial Kemet PPS caps....

For each position I've auditioned several industrial components (unless you call Wima FKP2 boutique...) and choose the best sounding ones (IMHO obviously) that in some case it was the cheaper (like the X7R ceramic....)

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Originally Posted by qusp View Post
wouldnt it be better to actually improve the regulators rather than just using audiophile approved parts?
Sure but it was not my goal...BTW also regulators have been improved using On Semi ones.
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Old 1st October 2012, 10:21 PM   #2134
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ch33ta View Post
I know ESS chips are good, but IMHO nothing spectacular compared to the CS4398 I've been using...
As I mentioned before, spdif source, power supply and output stage will have the biggest effect on the sound - dac chip is last on that list...
Another reason I'm sticking to CS4398 is it's relatively high output -6,7Vpp (~2,3Vrms), and it drives low impedance headphones with no problem
They are better than CS4398 at lower cost on smaller board size with less parts an no output stage needed.They also drive headphones directly. An extra headphone board is of course possible. With the right SPDIF receiver the source quality becomes less important than it used to be.

Good power supplies are mandatory for any DAC chip. Just like CS4316 has no place in a good design.
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Old 1st October 2012, 11:07 PM   #2135
bcmbob is offline bcmbob  United States
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Now, Now Mr. JP.

This Mini2496 may not match or top a DAC in the thousands, but it has produced excellent sound at an unbelievable price. I'm in you new group buy, but I have to give high praise to what Dario has done to squeeze pretty fantastic sound from an "OK" kit. It has bested several commercial boxes I own as well as the DAC in my high end Denon receiver. I still think it is a good place for entry level inrtoduction to DIY.

P.S. You missed out again. BLAT

I thought about sending you one, but I was afraid I couldn't past the butler
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Old 2nd October 2012, 02:54 AM   #2136
qusp is offline qusp  Australia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ch33ta View Post
I know ESS chips are good, but IMHO nothing spectacular compared to the CS4398 I've been using...
As I mentioned before, spdif source, power supply and output stage will have the biggest effect on the sound - dac chip is last on that list...
Another reason I'm sticking to CS4398 is it's relatively high output -6,7Vpp (~2,3Vrms), and it drives low impedance headphones with no problem
I somehow doubt that, you may think there is no problem, but that is very unlikely to be the reality. current limiting, the good chance of an output resistor and protection diode and high output impedance, do not add up to driving low impedance headphones with no problem.
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Old 2nd October 2012, 03:11 AM   #2137
qusp is offline qusp  Australia
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from the CS4398 datasheet

Quote:
Output Impedance = 118ohms....

Minimum AC-Load Resistance = 1kohms
Maximum Load Capacitance = 100pf


sorry but driving low impedance headphones is not remotely recommended and your 'close to ESS' (not) performance driving them will be thrown out the window. driving ANY headphones is beyond it really, 100pf isnt much for a headphone cable and diaphragm.

it will struggle in THD massively. nothing spectacular in comparison? hmm depends on if you care for spec at all. theres no accounting for taste, all good if you prefer it, but its probably the cries for help that you like =)

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Old 2nd October 2012, 06:49 AM   #2138
ch33ta is offline ch33ta  Croatia
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Sorry everyone, an error in communication, my fault...
I use; CS4398 -> output transformers -> headphones

CS4398 is the only one that works for me, the difference from other dac chips outputs
might be only ~0,3Vrms, but it's enough when driving the headphones...

As for ESS dac, don't pull out my words out of context, I never said it's not better, I just said it's not that a
spectacular difference compared to a well built CS4398 DAC - and I don't mean the specs - my only concern is how it sounds...
And it's not really in the same price range as the CS4398 dac...

Another thing that I don't get from ESS - what is with their datasheet secrecy, why can't they put
them on the website like every other manufacturer?

But now I'm going way off topic...
In the end, it just comes down to a matter of taste
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Old 2nd October 2012, 10:44 AM   #2139
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Originally Posted by bcmbob View Post
Now, Now Mr. JP.

This Mini2496 may not match or top a DAC in the thousands, but it has produced excellent sound at an unbelievable price. I'm in you new group buy, but I have to give high praise to what Dario has done to squeeze pretty fantastic sound from an "OK" kit. It has bested several commercial boxes I own as well as the DAC in my high end Denon receiver. I still think it is a good place for entry level inrtoduction to DIY.

P.S. You missed out again. BLAT

I thought about sending you one, but I was afraid I couldn't past the butler
Hi I had one, changed it and sold it as it was no match for my Fluency DACs. IMO it is an overrated piece of gear but it does sound good and it can give many hours of fun modding it.

I missed out again ? I miss out all the time !
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Last edited by jean-paul; 2nd October 2012 at 10:47 AM.
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Old 2nd October 2012, 02:26 PM   #2140
rpfunk is offline rpfunk  United States
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Default R-Core Voltage high

I finished a stock version of the kit with the supplied R-Core transformer and noticed that the 15V secondary reads 18.7V and the 9V reads 11.1. The DAC sounds fine, but I am concerned about the high tansformer readings. Is this normal?
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