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Old 27th September 2011, 12:11 AM   #1
tinitus is offline tinitus  Europe
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Default The future, DIY be left behind by the digital competition

are we ready to face the challenge of digital audio

looking at a product like this one, commercial 'competition' will be tough

or do we simply choose to ignore it ?

6moons audio reviews: CEntrance DACmini CX
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Old 27th September 2011, 12:27 AM   #2
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Interesting point......

I go back a ways in amateur radio....... even built a 1KW 1.296 GHz transceiver I used for "moon-bounce" communication, as a teen-ager.

Back "in those days", many of the hams were running home-brew AM rigs, and were proud of their DIY efforts. But with Single Sideband, and later PSK, direct digital readout, direct frequency synthesis, digital signal processing, microprocessors, etc, etc...... it became more attractive to purchase commercial ham equipment rather than DIY. In effect, as the complexity (and "bells and whistles") and quality grew (and commerical prices declined), getting that Icom rig, or that ________ (insert another overseas producer's name here) rig became the cost effective solution. Need an example? When is the last time you've seen a DIY palm-sized, direct digital frequency synthesized, FM rig for 144 and 440 MHz? Heck, you can buy a turn-key commercial one--of excellent quality--for about $400 these days....

Perhaps we are seeing some of the very same analog-to-digital evolution in audiophile offerings that we have seen with ham radio over the last 30 years.

Having said that, thank our lucky galaxies for Class A, Nelson Pass, and the quality stuff we can currently build that still sets the pace for audio lovers.

Still, something to ponder.
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Old 27th September 2011, 12:40 AM   #3
tinitus is offline tinitus  Europe
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well, I was beginning to get scared by the perspectives of digital compression
because that will rule, everywhere
and maybe sooner than we expect
I thought, hell, its all going down the drain
it will all be very poor quality

but then, no
digital compression technique will probably only get better and better
why ?
just because, thats the way it goes

preamp, DAC, USB, analoge in/out, headphone
man, look at the price of that thing
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Old 27th September 2011, 11:27 AM   #4
DF96 is offline DF96  England
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Digital compression will get cheaper and cheaper, not necessarily better and better. During the first half of my life technology got better and better: radio went from AM to FM then stereo, TV went from 405 lines to 625 lines then colour then stereo sound. During the second half of my life (so far) technology started going backwards: popular sound went from CD to MP3, TV went from analogue to low bit rate digital, radio tried (but hopefully will fail) to go from FM to low bit rate DAB, computers stopped just getting smaller and cheaper but went more and more complex and unreliable. Convenience is now the only criterion; most people are not interested in quality as they may never have experienced it.
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Old 27th September 2011, 01:17 PM   #5
tinitus is offline tinitus  Europe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DF96 View Post
Digital compression will get cheaper and cheaper, not necessarily better and better
because its needed in other areas, I'm quite sure it will be improved a lot

at the end of the line, you will have 100% loss free data 'compression technique'
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Old 28th September 2011, 12:55 PM   #6
Pano is offline Pano  United States
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As groovy as something like the DACmini is, there is always room for improvement. That's the fun part. There are cars, and there are hot-rods. Sure, by a Ferrari and you may not be tempted to "improve" it, but most of us don't buy a Ferrari or Porche 911 Carrera S.

Motorcycles are insanely fast and powerful these days, too. But guys still trick them out or build custom.
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Old 28th September 2011, 01:47 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pano View Post
there is always room for improvement
But is there? Some things are beyond significant improvement, such as spectacle lenses. You could produce them to space telescope standards, but you wouldn't be able to see any better.

I saw on a hot rod program the other day, they had red-anodized the cam followers. Cool, if you want to take the cambox off to have a look.

Nice little enclosure that DAC, but you could draw one up in Pro Engineer or SolidWorks and get it milled without breaking the bank if you were bored. Somebody probably will. Good to see audio stuff catching up in that respect, but audibly superior? I doubt it. It's just something to keep out of trouble on a wet Sunday afternoon. Like brass rubbings.
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