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MiniMax DAC - best opamps to replace stock ones?
MiniMax DAC - best opamps to replace stock ones?
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Old 4th January 2012, 06:42 AM   #41
Mooly is offline Mooly  United Kingdom
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MiniMax DAC - best opamps to replace stock ones?
Hi Bob,
I haven't used any LME series devices. Always had consistently good results with OPA2604/604 but do accept there are other devices with different sonics out there.
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Old 25th March 2012, 01:56 AM   #42
Audio Maniac is offline Audio Maniac  Brazil
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I tried OPA2604 and LME49720 for I/V stage:


  1. Firstly, I tried the LME49720 and in my opinion there's no comparison with the stock NE5532. The former has better dynamics, punchier and more controled bass, wider and deeper (holographic sound) soundstage, more transparent well defined midrange and higher resolution trebles. However, it does have some drawbacks. The Minimax DAC sounds unforgiving with bad recored files. Many of them sound flat and over bright. Extremely bright actually! Moreover, I miss a bit of body. If all CDs have audiophile quality, I'd be satisfied with LME49720. However, unfortunately it's far from the reality.
  2. Then I replaced the LME by OPA2604. It's warmer, sounds more bodied and more relaxed on mid-highs and highes. Definetely it's more forgiving with bad recordings, but it lacks definition on mids. The first point I percepted was regarding cymbals and percussion instruments that became messy. High frequencies are sweet but this sweetness brought loss of resolution. Other thing I didn't like was the soundstage. It became bi-dimensional and congested. Sumarazing, the DAC sounded average with all CDs.
None of them are perfect, but I prefer the LME. I am wondering if there's a op-amp with the resolution of the LME49720 but that sounds a bit sweeter on top end. I accept a darker sound, but not that much like OPA2604 does. Will AD827, AD825 or AD826 meet my needs? How about OPA827?

Last edited by Audio Maniac; 25th March 2012 at 02:01 AM.
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Old 25th March 2012, 02:17 AM   #43
abraxalito is offline abraxalito  United Kingdom
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Give LM6172 a whirl - but be sure to reduce any value of feedback capacitance you have around it. I found, with AD1955 as DAC, that around 5pF works well.
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Old 25th March 2012, 02:29 AM   #44
SoNic_real_one is offline SoNic_real_one  United States
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I like exactly that super-detail in high frequency provided by LM4562/LME49720...
Cymbals and others similar are not "bright" with them, that is exactly how it should sound if you are next to a real drum set.
Of course, a bad record will sound as it is... bad.

Last edited by SoNic_real_one; 25th March 2012 at 02:33 AM.
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Old 25th March 2012, 02:35 AM   #45
zifzhu is offline zifzhu
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you need a fet input opamp to do I/V job. the input bias current must as low as possible
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Old 25th March 2012, 06:14 AM   #46
bicefalo is offline bicefalo  Italy
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I like LME49720 with SILMIC II in psu bypassing role.
Hight registers sound cleaner and sweeter, creamy mids, with added bonus of stronger bass...
SILMICs +LME49720s make a great combo indeed.

Give them a run if You have space for big size caps like SILs are....

ciao

marco
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Old 25th March 2012, 06:52 AM   #47
Mooly is offline Mooly  United Kingdom
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MiniMax DAC - best opamps to replace stock ones?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Maniac View Post
I tried OPA2604 and LME49720 for I/V stage:
Thanks for posting your findings.

I guess as always this comes down to individual preferences and also the circuit into which the swap is taking place in. Any changes should really be backed up with real measurements to make sure the opamp is stable as I indicated right at the start.

The secret with opamps is getting all the conditions right for each and every application. See this thread,

http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/analo...technique.html
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Stabilising Opamp By Increasing Noise Gain.pdf (83.9 KB, 48 views)
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Old 25th March 2012, 11:02 AM   #48
abraxalito is offline abraxalito  United Kingdom
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoNic_real_one View Post
I like exactly that super-detail in high frequency provided by LM4562/LME49720...
Yep I noticed that in having them in my active speakers. I took them out - its MSG, unreal flavour enhancer

Quote:
Cymbals and others similar are not "bright" with them, that is exactly how it should sound if you are next to a real drum set.
I guess its needed for adding back in what your suck-y S-D dac took out - life
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Old 25th March 2012, 11:52 AM   #49
eradoncic is offline eradoncic  Croatia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Maniac View Post
Will AD827, AD825 or AD826 meet my needs? How about OPA827?
Hi, fist time to post in this thread...
In my experience, from the above list I would try AD827; I have tried also AD826, bu the differences between 827/826 not worth to buy both - they both have pretty much the same sonic signature, AD827 being a slightly more long-term enjoyable. And a bit more "silkier" highs.
I have to point that the DAC used is PMC63P-K based, if that matter.
Also tried OPA827 - an I must say it is excellent for that job, however, probably not that much better to complicate things using SOIC/DIP adapter, socket etc. - which all has its own influence.
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Old 25th March 2012, 12:15 PM   #50
SoNic_real_one is offline SoNic_real_one  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abraxalito View Post
Yep I noticed that in having them in my active speakers. I took them out - its MSG, unreal flavour enhancer
No, your brain add the MSG
When you listen all the time to a sucky OpAmp that follows a poor excuse of DAC (TDA :P), your brain starts to compensate for what is not there. Like when you stay all day in a dark, silent basement under a concert hall, your vision and hearing will adapt to that darkness and muffled sounds and compensate to enhance what is missing.
If you are exposed to the real thing, like if you go out in the bright concert hall above, with real instruments playing, suddenly you will think that "the light is too bright", "the sounds are too loud/bright". You are virtually blind and deaf to the new simuli.
If somebody tellsy you that measurements are better, you will dismiss with "measurements cannot catch all, my hearing does". Yep, we cannot measure the filters in your brain, but that doesn't count as subjective measurement, it is valid just for you.

But give the new stimuli time (people with no education say "let the OpAmp burn in" ) and your brain will adjust and it will be able to really extract the extra information without being overloaded.
This is happening all the time to the kids in the ipod generation. They listen to a FLAC from a good record and they say "what's so special compared with my mp3?". Their ear is way better than mine, but the brain is not able to recognize the new stimuly.
Professional musicians call that "educating the ear".

Last edited by SoNic_real_one; 25th March 2012 at 12:19 PM.
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