Author Topic: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac  (Read 54361 times)

Offline gamve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #140 on: November 03, 2014, 07:31:21 PM »
In fairness to both the LM and the KillerDac please be aware that I did not hear a direct comparison between these units at anytime on my recent trip to Melbourne. How you can assume one is better than the other listening on unfamiliar systems at different times, is drawing a fairly long bow.
To my knowledge only Craig heard both units on the one system. Craig also only heard the killerdac with tubes fitted that were inferior to requirements for good sound from this machine. To say the verdict is decided to my mind is a little premature especially having not even heard the evidence :)
 I have heard 2 x standard unadulterated LM units with only rectifier and output tube changes and in my opinion they both sound very good especially when you factor in that they both have less than 10 hours play time, they are readily available and cost less than a decent set of tubes and chokes for a KD. I don't give a fat rats about which is best except to say one is a commonly available and affordable item that sounds OK right out of the box, the other is a fantastic sounding unit with a matching price tag and to be fair a long delivery as the builder has a more than full time job in the real world. A real comparison would be the absolute bottom model Killerdac against a near standard LM DAC. This in my opinion would give a truly meaningful comparison rather than the useless exercise of comparing a VW Polo to a 7 Series BMW.
Disclaimer
If I have offended anyone with my comments above. tough titties....get a life.

Offline gamve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #141 on: November 03, 2014, 07:34:59 PM »
Interesting.    I'm assuming these comparisons are using 16bit sources?   (CD transport)

What comparisons? (read above)
Yes 16 BIT sources

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #142 on: November 03, 2014, 07:36:45 PM »
Interesting.    I'm assuming these comparisons are using 16bit sources?   (CD transport)
I don't think that was in the equation, I don't think comparisons where involved, its more does the Line Magnetic cut it. Does it really make music, to some it may, but word is the modified Line Magnetic was disappointing. Particularly to the analogue users. If it is sent to me, i can give you a full on nitty gritty evaluation of its performance. Hopefully mark may be persuaded to eventually send his, but Bryan most certainly will not, after all he has had a lot to say and has everything to lose, including this credibility.   

Offline brenden

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #143 on: November 03, 2014, 08:13:47 PM »
I think what Gamve said has a lot of merit .We  need to compare apples with apples . A base standard KD vs an  unmodified LM ,or  both fully modded .

    The KD has had many years of development ,and the LM is fresh ,so maybe somewhere down the track the comparison will be more valid .
   What I would like to know, is how good will the LM be when it is optimised .Is it a good base for development .

  I like the idea of  a dac that can even come close to the KD ,but accessible  to  the masses ,and affordable .We also need to be aware that to some of us ,small differences can seem huge because we have attuned ourselves to optimising even  the smallest of details .To others the  overall sound quality  may appear to be closer .I suspect that these  questions will require some time to evaluate .

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #144 on: November 03, 2014, 08:18:07 PM »
Oh that's a bit harsh Mr. G, ::) ::) losing credibility, :o come on, he is a talented system tuner / constructor and I for one believe him if he says he has got his sounding really good.  Without getting into a pissing contest, if the LM unit works really well post mods in his system then that's great, a direct comparison of a full house KD unless tuned for his system is likely to sound different but to an individuals ears, possibly not a whole hill of beans better.  It all comes down to personal choice and unless a blind listening test is done by a group of 4 or more dedicated types with the two units of interest its all largely conjecture IMV.

Somehow my guess would be that at 1K AUD direct (2.4k retail)unit is most unlikely to best a 5k+ product / labour of much gestation and care, just look at the ingredients......it made me wince a bit.  :-X

V
We all like different things so lets all agree to disagree and if any common ground is found then worship it.  Mine is the KD hence being present on this forum.

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #145 on: November 03, 2014, 09:23:52 PM »
Oh that's a bit harsh Mr. G, ::) ::) losing credibility, :o come on, he is a talented system tuner / constructor and I for one believe him if he says he has got his sounding really good.  Without getting into a pissing contest, if the LM unit works really well post mods in his system then that's great, a direct comparison of a full house KD unless tuned for his system is likely to sound different but to an individuals ears, possibly not a whole hill of beans better.  It all comes down to personal choice and unless a blind listening test is done by a group of 4 or more dedicated types with the two units of interest its all largely conjecture IMV.

Somehow my guess would be that at 1K AUD direct (2.4k retail)unit is most unlikely to best a 5k+ product / labour of much gestation and care, just look at the ingredients......it made me wince a bit.  :-X

V
V you forget Bryan made the claim... The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac kills the Killerdac...Then Bryan said... its a game changer, not it is a little better, or it maybe a system dependant thing, It's a full on statement. I guess the question is, if someone on a forum makes such a claim about a product and then people run out and buy it only to find out ultimately it's no game changer.. does that person lose some credibility. We are here to pass our knowledge on to other readers. We must have Credibility.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2014, 01:53:42 AM by stevenvalve »

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #146 on: November 03, 2014, 09:32:10 PM »
I think what Gamve said has a lot of merit .We  need to compare apples with apples . A base standard KD vs an  unmodified LM ,or  both fully modded .

    The KD has had many years of development ,and the LM is fresh ,so maybe somewhere down the track the comparison will be more valid .
   What I would like to know, is how good will the LM be when it is optimised .Is it a good base for development .

  I like the idea of  a dac that can even come close to the KD ,but accessible  to  the masses ,and affordable .We also need to be aware that to some of us ,small differences can seem huge because we have attuned ourselves to optimising even  the smallest of details .To others the  overall sound quality  may appear to be closer .I suspect that these  questions will require some time to evaluate .
I think its a great dac to work on, and the one I would pick to play with, especially considering the price. Love the fact it has the important things, like Valve rectification and valve output,
« Last Edit: November 03, 2014, 09:35:27 PM by stevenvalve »

Offline kajak12

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #147 on: November 03, 2014, 11:04:05 PM »
Bryan where are you? i need input before i spend $$$ and run line magnetic against my exkiller
still discovering the link between electronics and audio reproduction.so much to learn and so little time

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #148 on: November 04, 2014, 07:15:37 AM »
What comparisons? (read above)
This one...........
As to the question, on a well tuned wonderful sounding system is Bryans much modified Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac a killerdac killer, They clearly say NO.

Acknowledge the point that a side by side comparison was not done.  But clearly comparisons are being made, which is not a problem in my book.  We need to have some frame of reference to talk about.

Quote
Yes 16 BIT sources
Thanks for clarifying.    In my case 16bit is not the end game, I only use the format due to my hardware choices.   I have a huge library of hi-res music, that would be nice to play in its native format.

The dac supports 24bit, if/when there is a unit to hear up my way, then i am very interested to hear it playing 24bit.

Then we can say, well the mastering is different between 24bit files and CD's,  but thats ok thanks to some really good downsampling software at our disposal we can,,,,,,,

1)  Listen to 24bit reference track on optimised LM
2)  Downsample and listen to same track on LM in 16bit
3)  Listen to same 16bit downsampled track on KD

That, for me, is the thing I'd like to assess.  Handling of 24bit music from a computer source.



It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline gamve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #149 on: November 04, 2014, 03:59:04 PM »
"They clearly say NO"

Scratches head (who the fcuk are THEY)?

Why is it the ones who have the most to say are the ones who have not even heard the bloody thing.  ???

Offline Tuyen

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #150 on: November 04, 2014, 04:13:51 PM »
A question for the technical,   is there anything that challenging about just fitting a 'simple' but tube rectified output stage onto the outputs of a high quality sabre DAC based module (eg. Twisted Pear Buffalo IIISE or AckoDAC AKD12P) ?    Then stick a USB-I2S module from JLSound into the I2S input of the DAC module  and  bobs your uncle, you have a  high quality sabre based DAC   with a USB module that ticks all the important boxes?    Also being DIY'ers, can choose what parts (transformers, chokes, wiring, resistors, capacitors, tube sockets, rca sockets, etc.)  you like ?

Basically like what this guy did?



What benefits or important factors would the Line Magnetic unit possibly have that the DIY'er above has not considered?


Also found another commercial offering (albeit crazy priced)  of a Sabre based DAC with tube rectification and output  which looks quite 'simple' (usb to i2s module -> into sabre dac module -> jensen balanced to unbalanced signal transformers -> tube output stage?)    The Wavelength Audio Crimson HS USB DAC. 

http://www.audiostream.com/content/wavelength-audio-crimson-hs-usb-dac


Offline ozmillsy

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #151 on: November 04, 2014, 05:07:37 PM »
"They clearly say NO"

Scratches head (who the fcuk are THEY)?
I dunno, i'm just quoting what is being posted.  Steven, can you share with us who the fcuk they are?
 ??? 

Quote
Why is it the ones who have the most to say are the ones who have not even heard the bloody thing.  ???
Who are you referring to?      I dont have anything to say, beyond what I would like to hear, when steven gets his hands on 1 (ie: computer source or streamer, passing in 24bit).
« Last Edit: November 04, 2014, 05:11:43 PM by ozmillsy »
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #152 on: November 04, 2014, 05:31:51 PM »
"They clearly say NO"

Scratches head (who the fcuk are THEY)?

Why is it the ones who have the most to say are the ones who have not even heard the bloody thing.  ???
If they want to speak up, it's up to them, It's not my call. Not all post here.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2014, 05:39:49 PM by stevenvalve »

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #153 on: November 04, 2014, 05:47:27 PM »
 Zenelectro, summed  it up nicely, He can make a beautiful sounding Sabre base DAC, without all the Line Magnetics compromises. But at what price
« Last Edit: November 04, 2014, 05:50:54 PM by stevenvalve »

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #154 on: November 04, 2014, 05:49:45 PM »
A question for the technical,   is there anything that challenging about just fitting a 'simple' but tube rectified output stage onto the outputs of a high quality sabre DAC based module (eg. Twisted Pear Buffalo IIISE or AckoDAC AKD12P) ?    Then stick a USB-I2S module from JLSound into the I2S input of the DAC module  and  bobs your uncle, you have a  high quality sabre based DAC   with a USB module that ticks all the important boxes?    Also being DIY'ers, can choose what parts (transformers, chokes, wiring, resistors, capacitors, tube sockets, rca sockets, etc.)  you like ?

Basically like what this guy did?



What benefits or important factors would the Line Magnetic unit possibly have that the DIY'er above has not considered?


Also found another commercial offering (albeit crazy priced)  of a Sabre based DAC with tube rectification and output  which looks quite 'simple' (usb to i2s module -> into sabre dac module -> jensen balanced to unbalanced signal transformers -> tube output stage?)    The Wavelength Audio Crimson HS USB DAC. 

http://www.audiostream.com/content/wavelength-audio-crimson-hs-usb-dac


Right on Tuyen, these look good, home work is important

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #155 on: November 04, 2014, 06:15:09 PM »
Right on Tuyen, these look good, home work is important
reviewed unit has silver based transformers.   Makes me wonder what system they are using as a reference to build it?
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline Tuyen

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #156 on: November 04, 2014, 06:35:38 PM »
Would be a full on tubed based system would be my guess.  Gordon Rankin (Wavelength Audio) has always been a tube-a-holic.   Smart man.

http://www.audiostream.com/content/qa-wavelength-audios-gordon-rankin

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #157 on: November 04, 2014, 07:21:56 PM »
I have been doing my homework, and I have a new dac coming soon. The professor is building it as I type, what do you think of it.

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #158 on: November 04, 2014, 08:09:52 PM »
Lmao !!   ;D
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline gamve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #159 on: November 04, 2014, 11:31:49 PM »
I have been doing my homework, and I have a new dac coming soon. The professor is building it as I type, what do you think of it.

Yes Steve. Its a bit like chasing rainbows. Why the fcuk do we bother? They had it right years ago with tape and vinyl, the smart choice is still with these old outdated formats except when you consult the dichkeads that just want your money. The long and short of it is if an approximation is OK with you, bend over and go digital.