Author Topic: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba  (Read 13033 times)

Offline bhobba

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Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« on: January 25, 2013, 05:08:03 PM »
Hi Guys

Its been a bit of a wait with more than a few twists and turns but Craig has told me my Killer has been finished.  To get it up and running he has done it initially with SPDIF but my final version will use I2S fed by my Off-Ramp.

Its first outing will be the Canberra GTG tomorrow where we will do a comparison to my PDX and NAD M51.  Stevenvalve and Rawl99 will both be there.  Craig knows how I use my DAC (direct connecting to my amps and using an Off-Ramp) and will try and taylor it to that.  

So now its simply what the listening tests will show.

Will keep everyone informed.

Thanks
Bill

« Last Edit: February 02, 2013, 11:39:21 PM by bhobba »

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2013, 09:07:46 AM »
We listened to Bill's new Killerdac all day/night yesterday, and it sounds superb.  We did a direct comparison to his NAD M51,   and another dac has been murdered by the Killer.     It wasn't even close, the new current spec Kdac is on another planet.

We lifted the skirt of Bills PDX, and oh my goodness,  the engineering difference between the guts of a killer and the PDX has got to be seen to be believed. A comparison of the current spec PDX to Kdac didn't happen, as Bill forgot to bring his external power supply for the PDX.  That should happen today sometime.

Bill, it was good to meet you.  You should be very pleased with the Kdac, it's a bloody beauty !
Q:   If I like the treble turned down,  and you like the treble turned up.....  what does that say about our hearing?   ;-D

Offline zenelectro

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2013, 09:18:24 PM »
Let's see some DAC porn photos :) :)

Offline yoshio

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2013, 10:07:16 AM »
Guys,

Can this be it?

Stumble across this while browsing diyaudio, LOOK at the huge chunk of caps!


Offline ozmillsy

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2013, 05:30:35 PM »
That's my dac,   Which is not the same as the new version Killer.

It's changed a fair bit.
Q:   If I like the treble turned down,  and you like the treble turned up.....  what does that say about our hearing?   ;-D

Offline bhobba

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2013, 11:46:14 PM »
Hi Guys

We did the comparison the next day.  On that system the Killer was clearly better.  Still people thought the PDX was pretty good.  

The Killer sounded a bit like DSD through my Playback Designs - not sure if its as good or maybe even better - maybe - will need to check it out.

Thanks
Bill

Offline onthebeach

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2013, 05:39:36 PM »
Good on ya Bill.
You were the one who put me in touch with Steven originally with the suggestion that a Killer was possibly the best DAC going around and therefore the best avenue for me to pursue. Certainly i have not regretted a minute of that ride.
I've made some dodgy component purchases over the years but the Killer certainly wasn't one of them.
I hope you're having some fun with yours :)

Nathan

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2013, 03:11:51 PM »
That's my dac,   Which is not the same as the new version Killer.

It's changed a fair bit.
So how about a pm with the guts and glory of the new build for way of comparison?
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: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2013, 03:44:58 PM »
That's my dac,   Which is not the same as the new version Killer.

It's changed a fair bit.
So how about a pm with the guts and glory of the new build for way of comparison?
V
V. Here is a low resolution picture of the latest KillerDac. Simpler, less is more. Different than the earlier models, but the principle is the same.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2013, 03:57:59 PM by stevenvalve »

Offline Jehuty

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2013, 07:20:30 PM »
Simpler? It's got the most sophisticated switch I've ever seen so I'm not sure if it's really simpler!  :P
« Last Edit: March 03, 2013, 07:22:58 PM by Jehuty »
Not all that matters can be measured, not all that can be measured matters.

Offline flemo

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2013, 12:38:54 AM »
That's my dac,   Which is not the same as the new version Killer.

It's changed a fair bit.
So how about a pm with the guts and glory of the new build for way of comparison?
V
V. Here is a low resolution picture of the latest KillerDac. Simpler, less is more. Different than the earlier models, but the principle is the same.

Noice!  Looking forward to some more pics??

Offline kajak12

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2013, 01:32:58 AM »
That's my dac,   Which is not the same as the new version Killer.

It's changed a fair bit.
So how about a pm with the guts and glory of the new build for way of comparison?
V
V. Here is a low resolution picture of the latest KillerDac. Simpler, less is more. Different than the earlier models, but the principle is the same.
You have to buy one Flemo

Noice!  Looking forward to some more pics??
still discovering the link between electronics and audio reproduction.so much to learn and so little time

Offline flemo

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #12 on: March 07, 2013, 10:08:42 AM »
That's my dac,   Which is not the same as the new version Killer.

It's changed a fair bit.
So how about a pm with the guts and glory of the new build for way of comparison?
V
V. Here is a low resolution picture of the latest KillerDac. Simpler, less is more. Different than the earlier models, but the principle is the same.
You have to buy one Flemo

Noice!  Looking forward to some more pics??

I have one Mario, a Killer SP10!

Offline bhobba

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #13 on: December 31, 2013, 06:45:03 PM »
Hi Guys
 
Rawl just completed my Killer and have just returned from hearing it over his place.
 
When I arrived Rawl had his uber transport running via I2S into it playing Dianna Krall - Girl In The Other Room.  Before saying anything else I want to emphasize this transport is wild - really low jitter custom modified Trichord clocks and other stuff that is quite likely even above the uber stuff in an Off-Ramp.  This is no ordinary bit of gear.
 
The amp was an upgraded VAC and speakers ML3 Reference, the same as mine.
 
Very full harmonically rich enveloping sound.  This type of thing is what Rawl and other Killer DAC guys refer to as detail - for me its a fuller richer sound - not extra detail - I like it - but its different terminology than I use.  I thought, yes it had the signature of other Killers I had heard and I liked it right off.
 
Next up was via my Off-Ramp using I2S.  My Off-Ramp also uses a heavily upgraded custom built power supply that makes a big difference over the switching supply Steve supplies with it.  It has a switch that engages and disengages the earth - and we found one position significantly better than the other - much cleaner clearer sound so that's what we stuck with.
 
The difference was the Off-Ramp had greater detail, and better, tighter bass, but it lost a significant amount of the harmonic richness.  It was a whiter, more bland sound.  I preferred the transport, but I am not sure that would be everyone's preference.  Knowing Killer DAC aficionados they would prefer the transport. Certainly Rawl much preferred it.
 
OK - I also took on over my Playback Designs, which, prior to the Phasure, was the best DAC I had heard via DSD.  First up we played Harry Belefonte - Sylvie via PCM - OK - but to my ears the Killer was obviously better.  This was expected - the PD is OK via PCM - but a number of other DAC's I pitted it against were better.  Its real strength is DSD.  So next was Sylvie via DSD.  Immediately better - very live real and present.  Now we are talking.  Ok - what about the Off-Ramp via PCM into the Killer.  Sorry PD guys - we have another DAC other than the Phasure that is better.  It simply sounded richer and more life like.
 
We played a number tracks including some classical.  But it was all basically the same - the Killer was clearly better than the PD - and the transport had a fuller, richer more enveloping sound - but the Off-Ramp better detail and bass..
 
The DAC shootout should prove very interesting.
 
And if anyone want to hear it simply drop me or Rawl99 a line. 
 
He will have it for the next few weeks.
 
Thanks
Bill

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #14 on: January 02, 2014, 09:42:34 AM »
Congrats Bill.   The current generation KD is a remarkable piece of kit, loaded up with special parts.   The side by side internal view at Canberra, of kd to pdx, really spoke volumes.

May it bring you many years of enjoyment.
Q:   If I like the treble turned down,  and you like the treble turned up.....  what does that say about our hearing?   ;-D

Offline hedalfa

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #15 on: January 02, 2014, 03:41:06 PM »
Congrats Bill.   The current generation KD is a remarkable piece of kit, loaded up with special parts.   The side by side internal view at Canberra, of kd to pdx, really spoke volumes.

May it bring you many years of enjoyment.

Agreed the PDX looked like a toy. Many owners might be shocked if they looked inside... :o

Offline Davey Willo

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #16 on: January 02, 2014, 08:07:41 PM »
I'm in the market for a good DAC so this is a serious question, how much would one expect to pay for the latest version of a KD??

I'm currently trialing a Bakoon DAC which I'm quite impressed with but the KD has always intrigued me as I know that it has captured the hearts of people with ears I trust.

I used to dismiss the KD as it couldn't do high res but to tell the truth I'm no longer convinced by high res anyway due to the fact that most of my favourite, most 'musical' albums that I listen to are all Red Book, and yet some of my highest bit recordings sound sh!te..

The Bakoon is ~ $4500, would that put me somewhere in the ballpark for a latest KD??

Cheers
Dave

Offline kajak12

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #17 on: January 02, 2014, 09:03:01 PM »
About $5800  willo hand made with love but a waiting period comes with it.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2014, 09:34:05 PM by kajak12 »
still discovering the link between electronics and audio reproduction.so much to learn and so little time

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #18 on: January 02, 2014, 10:52:04 PM »
I'm in the market for a good DAC so this is a serious question, how much would one expect to pay for the latest version of a KD??

I'm currently trialing a Bakoon DAC which I'm quite impressed with but the KD has always intrigued me as I know that it has captured the hearts of people with ears I trust.

I used to dismiss the KD as it couldn't do high res but to tell the truth I'm no longer convinced by high res anyway due to the fact that most of my favourite, most 'musical' albums that I listen to are all Red Book, and yet some of my highest bit recordings sound sh!te..

The Bakoon is ~ $4500, would that put me somewhere in the ballpark for a latest KD??

Cheers
Dave
When you have a killerdac, you wont care about Hi Res, low Res, Any Res. It's the only component you will never change, never think of changing, One thing comes to mind when I listen to my Killer, glorious midrange splendour, I think HiRes has the potential to be good, but I have the feeling it will only happen, if we make one from the ground up. The people making them now are well .......useless. They just do not seem to understand, the Dacs they are making do not remotely sound like real music.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2014, 10:56:18 PM by stevenvalve »

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: Killer DAC For Bill Hobba
« Reply #19 on: January 02, 2014, 11:13:11 PM »
Davo  :D  ;)

Quote
I'm currently trialing a Bakoon DAC which I'm quite impressed with but the KD has always intrigued me as I know that it has captured the hearts of people with ears I trust.
Quote

Here you will not be comparing apples to apples.  Solid state Vs Valve.  As usual it will be all about system synergy as that's the be all and end all IMV.

If you speak really nicely to Mario he may bring his round, probably easier to take your front end down to his.  The KD is all about conveying the emotion in music IMV as it does not get hung up on FR or artificial detail, it can also sound pretty convincing unlike a lot of artificial sounding whiter than white units.

When you want to be able to loose yourself in the music you can do a whole lot worse for considerably more money.

If you are already pretty happy with the Bakoon but not in love then there is clearly a quest for a fairer maiden.  If you can live with the uglier than Sin looks  :-X and can feed it with a top flight transport / source then you may not just be able to live with anything else.  :)
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.