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PostPosted: October 13th, 2021, 3:38 pm 
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David/Roscoe,

Did you guys get a chance to compare Chord DACs, with and without upsampling, with your Vinyl rig?

In an YouTube video, Rob Watts claimed that as the noise floor is reduced, the sound stage depth is increased. He is talking about noise floors of -300 to -330dB which is far below the specs of DAVE (SNR > 127dB). I am not sure how Watts is measuring -300dB floor and how it effects his DAC which is spec'd only at -127dB. Preamp and Amps have much higher noise floor than DACs.

Since even redbood PCM has much lower noise floor (-96dB) than Vinyl (-60dB??), I am wondering does redbook PCM decoded by a quality DAC produce deeper soundstage, as Watts seems to imply.

Taking it one step further, converting 16 bit PCM to 24 bit PCM should reduce the noise floor by 48dB and hence have deeper sound stage depth. I havent tested this in HQP, but I dont recall increasing the resolution have an noticeable impact on soundstage depth. Shall compare it seriously on of these days.


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PostPosted: October 13th, 2021, 7:36 pm 
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I'll wager that a -300dB noise floor doesn't exist in any technology or environment that life as we know it can exist.

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PostPosted: October 13th, 2021, 9:13 pm 
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Joined: April 22nd, 2013, 12:58 pm
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This seems like sound evidence to completely ignore Rob Watts YouTube videos......


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PostPosted: October 14th, 2021, 8:54 am 
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What's the date of the Rob Watts video that you are referring to?


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PostPosted: October 14th, 2021, 3:55 pm 
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-300db noise floor? :roll:

The Holo May DAC measures well but my vinyl setup sounds better IMHO. Laughably better in some cases. Shrug, it just does for some reason.


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PostPosted: October 14th, 2021, 5:29 pm 
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Don Diego wrote:
What's the date of the Rob Watts video that you are referring to?


https://youtu.be/sUNVs7XSoPI
Listened to this video once again today. Rob Watts is not very clear. He seems to be saying, by shaping the noise below -200dB of DSD source and he is generating signals at those low levels, and these level signal can be heard as sound stage depth. By implication, the DAC’s higher noise floor does not matter, signals below the noise floor come through. Could it be like minuscule high freq signal riding over the mids and bass?


Found another video today. This one is little more clear.
https://youtu.be/BXyjsSYjnL8


Last edited by Cogito on October 14th, 2021, 5:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: October 14th, 2021, 5:32 pm 
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TubeDriver wrote:

The Holo May DAC measures well but my vinyl setup sounds better IMHO. Laughably better in some cases. Shrug, it just does for some reason.



Interesting.
How are you using May to compare?
Vinyl vs Redbook or Vinyl vs hirez DSD/PCM?
Any upsampling?


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PostPosted: October 14th, 2021, 7:46 pm 
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Thanks for the links. I see that these interviews are part of a 4-part video series of Rob Watts. I’ll have to find time to listen to them later.

While I do not know how Watts is measuring the noise floor, the concept seems reasonable even if the numbers don’t measure up. To use the analogy of a telescope, if the resolution is increased and the noise floor is decreased you will see deeper into space.

The comparison to a good vinyl setup may be like comparing chocolate to vanilla ice cream. I believe it is well known that vinyl has good and bad distortions and a higher noise floor but the good distortions of warmth, body and an analog waveform are very pleasant to the ear. R2R tape and DSD128+ also bring some of these characteristics to the table.

I listened to a few videos by Michael Fremer discussing the superior sounds from his mega-expensive vinyl rigs being better than any other systems for playing back recordings. I have no reason to doubt him but I definitely don’t have that kind of money, so what’s the point. I recognize that there is always something better.

I believe the Chord Dave/Hugo TT2/MScalar is highly praised, state of the art, and relatively affordable. I’m not sure that I could afford a highly praised vinyl rig setup (turntable, tonearm, cartridge, phono stage) anymore. I gag at the price of the high end cartridges nowadays.


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PostPosted: October 14th, 2021, 8:11 pm 
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Cogito wrote:
Don Diego wrote:
What's the date of the Rob Watts video that you are referring to?


https://youtu.be/sUNVs7XSoPI
Listened to this video once again today. Rob Watts is not very clear. He seems to be saying, by shaping the noise below -200dB of DSD source and he is generating signals at those low levels, and these level signal can be heard as sound stage depth. By implication, the DAC’s higher noise floor does not matter, signals below the noise floor come through. Could it be like minuscule high freq signal riding over the mids and bass?


Found another video today. This one is little more clear.
https://youtu.be/BXyjsSYjnL8


I watched the second link and found it very enlightening. A lot of it was over my head so I cannot comment on the accuracy but many of the things he has been talking about concerning low level detail and transients made sense to me.


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PostPosted: October 14th, 2021, 10:24 pm 
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TubeDriver wrote:
-300db noise floor? :roll:

The Holo May DAC measures well but my vinyl setup sounds better IMHO. Laughably better in some cases. Shrug, it just does for some reason.


Pete, I sort of agree and can say that I find vinyl sounds just as clean and just about as low noise on my setup as digital. Two things on my vinyl rig has helped considerably for that. First is the little iFiPhono 3, I find it to be a wonderful phonostage, black background, really gets the detail. The other is my recent motor upgrade on my Teres 340 to a Verus 3 phase synchronous motor rim drive. It is incredible how much difference that makes, vinyl is very impactful, fast, stable, and very low noise. I was always a bit unhappy with the old DC motor setup, especially when having battery problems, but that is all over now. The table is so much better with the new motor.

The quality of the recording matters on both formats, and a great recording on either makes you appreciate what the format can do. No complaints, and nice to have both options.

As far as the Rob Watts videos, I will have to watch them. I have listened to some podcast interviews with him before, and he is obviously very smart and know what he is doing, and pushes the limits of what is possible, but sometimes he talks about what is theoretically possible rather than practically achievable. I recall he has stated that available FPGA size limits what he can actually program into the chips.

David


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