Author Topic: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac  (Read 51724 times)

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #60 on: September 30, 2014, 11:40:05 PM »
In order to fairly compare dac vs dac, you need an independent baseline.

Tape on your system sounds amazing.
Whichever dac gets closest to the actual source (the amazing sounding tape), wins.
Pretty simple.

The problem with not doing it this way, is the comparisons are driven by the music choices (which recording better suits).
Yes, very astute indeed, I like your logic. Closest to the tape wins.

Offline Jehuty

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #61 on: October 01, 2014, 12:48:52 AM »
Yes, very astute indeed, I like your logic. Closest to the tape wins.

Then you gotta do it and first is your own KillerDac. It'll be fun!
Not all that matters can be measured, not all that can be measured matters.

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #62 on: October 01, 2014, 07:24:14 AM »
Bryan has to finish dialling in the LM, and we need to find a way to get it up here.

But I can feel a major GTG in the mountains coming on. :)
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline Tuyen

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #63 on: October 01, 2014, 06:19:24 PM »
So Mr. T, what digital processor / DAC are you currently using post the DDDAC?  Must be good but we are yet to be informed.[/font][/size]
V

Still currently using a lightly tweaked 4 stack DDDAC1794NOS (with custom sowter opts)  fed via a WAVEIO USB-I2S interface board.  With the DAC being powered with a new power supply (heavy duty CLCLC design), I am quite satisfied with the performance.  The computer setup does make a noticeable difference to sq too (currently Win Server 2012 R2,  Fidelizer 6,  JRiver with memory play enabled).

I also still have a KDAC/modded CEC TL-1 transport combo here that I sometimes refer back to, just to make sure I'm not deluding myself too much.  :P

Oh, and finally a DIY Audial AYA-II USB/SPDIF DAC (TDA1541 16/44 based design with SS output stage) which sounds alright (usb implementation is old tech and I find sounds worse than spdif input), but overall can't say is anything special.

Offline Tuyen

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #64 on: October 01, 2014, 06:25:22 PM »
Bryan has to finish dialling in the LM, and we need to find a way to get it up here.

But I can feel a major GTG in the mountains coming on. :)

Would Bryan really be willing to send his modded LM DAC (tuned for his system and preferences I might add) up there for a 'shootout'?  With a more than likely chance of it getting shot down?  lol

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #65 on: October 01, 2014, 09:51:37 PM »
Bryan has bought his own 1541 dac up to Stevens before for a comparo,   so it wouldn't be the 1st time he's done that.

Everyone acknowledges the home ground advantage means alot.  These comparos arent really about winning or losing,  its about understanding where things are at.   If it even came close (the LM), this says alot.

It's unlikely we would see Bryan up here anytime soon, only due to his time commitments with his business.
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline Tuyen

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #66 on: October 01, 2014, 10:18:44 PM »
I see I see.  Well I do hope one day he does manage to bring it up for others to have a listen and hopefully satisfy the curiosity.

Just thought it had read pretty obvious in Bryan's post, how he found it compared to his and Mark's KDACs. 

"I can say compared to my killerdac and Marks killerdac there was absolutely no contest.  It was killed."

Yet people trying to challenge/doubt his experience/opinion.   Is there really any need for this?

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #67 on: October 01, 2014, 11:28:10 PM »
Definitely love to hear it, sometime, somewhere.

Blue Mountains GTGs are a rockin good time.

Demoing the LM among friends would be awesome.  But as you say, unlikely.
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline gamve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #68 on: October 02, 2014, 01:10:39 PM »
I see I see.  Well I do hope one day he does manage to bring it up for others to have a listen and hopefully satisfy the curiosity.

Just thought it had read pretty obvious in Bryan's post, how he found it compared to his and Mark's KDACs. 

"I can say compared to my killerdac and Marks killerdac there was absolutely no contest.  It was killed."

Yet people trying to challenge/doubt his experience/opinion.   Is there really any need for this?

No we should all follow blindly and believe everything we are told  ;D (please read this in context to
tuyens question. I did not say I do not follow others advice but I did say that I like to think for myself
and form my own opinions rather than follow a pack mentality)

Brian's comment was his opinion. He also said the DAC killed a $100,000 turntable set up.
Now let's think about this for a bit, a 2K dac sounds better than a 100K tuntable. Don't know
about you but that instantly turns on my Bullhsit filter (note that the poster adds later that
the turntable might not have been set up properly)
I have not heard this new DAC so I have no opinion. (there it is in a nutshell. I value good advice
and to back up my statement I have in fact purchased one of these units to have a play with)

(Please read the following in the intention it was written. It is a generalization of my experience with sites
like SNA where some fanboy is always pushing the barrow for one of the site sponsors newest latest
and greatest)
Lots of hype usually means lots of BS and some sort of vested financial interest. I really like other peoples
opinions except when what they are really trying to do is flog me some latest and greatest piece of rubbish that
will be worth exactly 1 /10 of what it cost 3 months later.
Having had my rant I would like to add if this new device does indeed do what it claims then
expect that the price will probably triple into the next model which will probably be only half
as good as the original model.
Wonder how it compares up against my delightfully cheap, simple and unmodified Korg 100
DSD capable dac?

My apologies to anyone who did not read the (original) post in the correct context.
 
« Last Edit: October 15, 2014, 05:32:30 PM by gamve »

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #69 on: October 02, 2014, 02:36:12 PM »
Yup, great post from the wise.
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 Tuyen

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #70 on: October 02, 2014, 05:57:54 PM »
I get ya point Graham :)   

I guess I wonder what possible vested financial or other interests could Bryan possibly have with sharing what he has.  Unless his "business" is in fact being the mporter/distributor for LM products in AUS and he is making money from sales of these unit!   8)

The fact is, some of us know he has an excellent set of ears and amazing skill, hence able to build incredible sounding systems which some of us have been fortunate to experience.  Wouldn't that account for some reason to at least seriously consider/respect his opinions/claims?   

I understand things can be taken differently if we were discussing about a review published on an online magazine/site.   That's my take on the matter anyway.   

Then again, I have to admit, my bs filter/meter does also run high on a few things I've read or have been told in the past too.   I try best to contain myself most of the time though.  lol  :P
« Last Edit: October 02, 2014, 06:26:13 PM by Tuyen »

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #71 on: October 02, 2014, 08:03:03 PM »
I can not stress enough, Whether It's Marks system, mine, yours, there will always be a product be it amp, pre, Dac, transport, etc. that will gels with that system. Does that mean its a better sounding product, NO..... but right then and there on that system it is.

Offline kajak12

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #72 on: October 02, 2014, 10:35:22 PM »
Still currently using a lightly tweaked 4 stack DDDAC1794NOS (with custom sowter opts)  fed via a WAVEIO USB-I2S interface board.  With the DAC being powered with a new power supply (heavy duty CLCLC design), I am quite satisfied with the performance.  The computer setup does make a noticeable difference to sq too (currently Win Server 2012 R2,  Fidelizer 6,  JRiver with memory play enabled).

I also still have a KDAC/modded CEC TL-1 transport combo here that I sometimes refer back to, just to make sure I'm not deluding myself too much.  :P

Oh, and finally a DIY Audial AYA-II USB/SPDIF DAC (TDA1541 16/44 based design with SS output stage) which sounds alright (usb implementation is old tech and I find sounds worse than spdif input), but overall can't say is anything special.
HOW MUCH IS WIN SERVER 2012 R2?
still discovering the link between electronics and audio reproduction.so much to learn and so little time

Offline kajak12

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #73 on: October 02, 2014, 10:59:18 PM »
No we should all follow blindly and believe everything we are told  ;D

Brian's comment was his opinion. He also said the DAC killed a $100,000 turntable set up.
Now let's think about this for a bit, a 2K dac sounds better than a 100K tuntable. Don't know
about you but that instantly turns on my Bullhsit filter
I have not heard this new DAC so I have no opinion. Lots of hype usually means lots of BS
and some sort of vested financial interest. I really like other peoples opinions except when
what they are really trying to do is flog me some latest and greatest piece of rubbish that
will be worth exactly 1 /10 of what it cost 3 months later.
Having had my rant I would like to add if this new device does indeed do what it claims then
expect that the price will probably triple into the next model which will probably be only half
as good as the original model.
Wonder how it compares up against my delightfully cheap, simple and unmodified Korg 100
DSD capable dac?
Line magnetic $2k plus free stake knives delivered  ;)
still discovering the link between electronics and audio reproduction.so much to learn and so little time

Offline Rob181

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #74 on: October 03, 2014, 09:25:11 AM »
Line magnetic $2k plus free stake knives delivered  ;)

Stake knives are not much good unless you have a problem with vampires...

Offline Mark OTL

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #75 on: October 03, 2014, 12:23:46 PM »
I can not stress enough, Whether It's Marks system, mine, yours, there will always be a product be it amp, pre, Dac, transport, etc. that will gels with that system. Does that mean its a better sounding product, NO..... but right then and there on that system it is.

Yep, this is indeed a point I've repeated over and over to so many enthusiasts over the years. I've heard many high dollars systems where the "quite excellent" components don't "synergise" properly, and the end result is very average,..or worse. Conversely, I've heard moderately price systems where the builder has taken the time to choose components that do synergise, and the result is pure musicality. An old story most or all of us has experienced at sometime. Like it or not, components do interact with each other,...and it's not all good! Whether it be impedance matching, or more complex interaction like signal reflection in digital cable, this part of system building cannot be ignored.
 
Before I post the result, I'll go back to my KDac tonight to be absolutely certain of the comparison. I usually find the differences in components becomes more obvious when going back to the original setup. A very strange human characteristic, but always seems to be the case in my experience.
I guess I should add, I also approach all new product with a sturdy BullHsit filter switched firmly on, and a questioning outlook. I first look for the financial links first to route out the money trails which will taint/sway the recommending of the component in question, or the condemning of a product for that matter. We should all approach new product with this attitude, be open minded always, but believe nothing until proven to you. I have no financial "angles" on LM502, I'll simply tell you what I hear.

Cheers, Mark.
Best learn from other peoples mistakes, you'll never have time to make them all yourself!

Offline zenelectro

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #76 on: October 03, 2014, 12:39:02 PM »
No we should all follow blindly and believe everything we are told  ;D

Brian's comment was his opinion. He also said the DAC killed a $100,000 turntable set up.
Now let's think about this for a bit, a 2K dac sounds better than a 100K tuntable. Don't know
about you but that instantly turns on my Bullhsit filter
I have not heard this new DAC so I have no opinion. Lots of hype usually means lots of BS
and some sort of vested financial interest. I really like other peoples opinions except when
what they are really trying to do is flog me some latest and greatest piece of rubbish that
will be worth exactly 1 /10 of what it cost 3 months later.
Having had my rant I would like to add if this new device does indeed do what it claims then
expect that the price will probably triple into the next model which will probably be only half
as good as the original model.
Wonder how it compares up against my delightfully cheap, simple and unmodified Korg 100
DSD capable dac?

Gamv, I hear ya - and I do love the no BS style of your posts.

I think WRT turntables versus DAC's (and skirts) DAC's are consistently getting better so
they are often better than the TT. 

WRT Korg, I'm always surprised when people are comparing these to mega dollar digital playback.
I have mine in bits and you get what you pay for. It is packing an ADC, DAC, mic pre, etc etc into a complete
recording device with HDD and control so there are huge compromises in the electronic design. It has to be this way.

The actual quality of the ADC is very good the DAC is also pretty good. The rest needs a lot of work, ie; power supplies,
clocks, analog stages etc etc.
   
Z

Offline Tuyen

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #77 on: October 03, 2014, 12:50:51 PM »
HOW MUCH IS WIN SERVER 2012 R2?

Free. 180-day trial from Microsoft.   http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/evalcenter/evaluate-windows-server-2012-r2
Just do a fresh re-install after 180 days is up  :)

Offline gamve

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #78 on: October 03, 2014, 02:12:16 PM »
Gamv, I hear ya - and I do love the no BS style of your posts.

I think WRT turntables versus DAC's (and skirts) DAC's are consistently getting better so
they are often better than the TT. 

WRT Korg, I'm always surprised when people are comparing these to mega dollar digital playback.
I have mine in bits and you get what you pay for. It is packing an ADC, DAC, mic pre, etc etc into a complete
recording device with HDD and control so there are huge compromises in the electronic design. It has to be this way.

The actual quality of the ADC is very good the DAC is also pretty good. The rest needs a lot of work, ie; power supplies,
clocks, analog stages etc etc.
   
Z

Zen,
The Korg DAC I'm talking about is not a recorder it is a totally new product...mmm let me find a link

http://www.korg.com/us/products/audio/ds_dac_100/

Have a gander

Offline maniac phil

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Re: The Line Magnetic LM-502CA Dac
« Reply #79 on: October 03, 2014, 03:05:39 PM »
glowing review:
http://www.witchdoctor.co.nz/index.php/2013/06/line-magnetic-lm-502ca-vacuum-tube-dac-review/

 “Shindo of China”     lol

some thoughts from Thorsten Loesch (he of AMR fame, http://www.amr-audio.co.uk/html/product_list.html
on JoeNet http://mailman.soundlist.org/mailman/listinfo/sound

< Had a look.

> 1 , using the U.S. ESS 9016 DAC chip

The ESS Chip's CAN be quite good, but they are not easy to implement right.

The problem is that DAC inside switches at an extremely high rate and
has no internal analogue filtering to slow things down, so the output
switches state at the external clock, usually 80MHz - 125MHz. There
are few options for analogue stages that stand the slightest chance to
deal with such a signal without getting out of shape.

The best implementation I know uses low value I/V conversion
resistors, followed by a high ratio stepup transformer also used as
lowpass filter, followed by some tube buffers. This is not a
commercial product BTW.

> 10 , transistor output op amp circuit using advanced ceramics NE5532, tube output circuit uses two 12AU7

The 5532 is really not an op-amp to deal with high rate unfiltered signals.

Maybe their tube section is better, unless of course it is just a
cathode follower.

Seeing the SNR they get from the ES9016 indicates a serious design problem.

It is easily possibly to exceed 120dB SNR using this DAC, only getting
98dB on the Op-Amp based output is poor. Possibly it is down to
ultrasonic noise and RFI from the DAC chip folding back into the audio
range.

Now how much does this say about what it will sound like to you? Not much.

But given what is there objectively I would strongly advise to listen
for oneself and not to buy blind, at least not without a solid 30 day
"no quibble" return policy. >
regards