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Shunyata Venom USB should not be making this difference

Discussion in 'audio' started by naimnut, Oct 9, 2021.

  1. Yank

    Yank Bulbous Also Tapered

    I thought he said "...dangerous combination..."?
    leroyd and notevenclose like this.
  2. notevenclose

    notevenclose pfm Member

    Arf! He may well have done, it must be quite a while back. Actually, I think you're probably right.
  3. sq225917

    sq225917 Bit of this, bit of that

    Notevenclose, weiss 202, audiolab mdac, gustard a18, soncoz sgd1, pi with Ian Canada dual 9038, smsl400 and a few others.
  4. notevenclose

    notevenclose pfm Member

    Interesting. I'm not really familiar with the others, but I believe both the Weiss and Audiolab use ESS chips? Is that the case with others on your list?

    John Kenny of Ciunas Audio has an interesting theory, mentioned on this very forum a year or three back, that there's a design flaw in ESS chips which effectively means they tend not to show up differences between cables.

    FWIW, I own 2 DACs, one by CEC, which uses an ESS chip, the other by Job Systems (Goldmund) which does not. One of these DACs shows clear, consistently identifiable differences between USB cables, the other does not.

    I was puzzled when I first bought the CEC, which replaced a Metrum, because with it my then preferred £350 Oyaide cable didn't really sound any different to cheaper alternatives from Oyaide, Atlas and QED (if anything it sounded a bit too bright).

    With the Metrum there had been clear differences.

    Bottom line is I came to consider that the whole USB audio thing should be treated as a complete 'subsystem,' in the manner of turntable, arm, cartridge and phono stage.
  5. notevenclose

    notevenclose pfm Member

  6. narabdela

    narabdela who?

    At the risk of being accused of trolling, I thought that this was worth highlighting. Make of it what you will.
    John Phillips and sq225917 like this.
  7. sq225917

    sq225917 Bit of this, bit of that

    A design flaw that means it doesn't show up differences between cables? Perhaps it's endowed with invulnerability to magic spells and potions.

    You do realise theres a million and one things between the usb socket and the dac chip? At least one clock, hopefully a transformer or silicon isolator, either an integrated USB receiver or an fpga, loads of passives and likely 30cm of track.

    The ess chips have an integrated spdif receiver, usb goes through a separate offboard circuit which provides data, data clock and mclk in the format it requires in either pcm or dsd.

    Jk has some very odd utterly unsubstantiated ideas. Ess chips have variously has a left channel locking bug and an imd hump depending on version and implementation of output stage.
    John Phillips and narabdela like this.
  8. John Phillips

    John Phillips pfm Member

    If anyone likes a specific USB cable I won't dispute that but I have to comment on this.

    To me that does not seem like a design flaw at all. A design flaw would be a DAC chip that only offered its full performance if you delivered its input on a special USB cable. To me it would be a design requirement that a DAC chip offer its full performance with any USB standards-compliant cable.

    I guess it comes down to how you enjoy the hobby. If you think it's a good thing for DAC performance to vary with the digital input delivery cable then OK I have nothing to say - it's your hobby. But that's not how others see it. When I have designed and built stuff I know for sure any rational customer would be upset if I didn't cope properly with in-specification cables and deliver full performance regardless.
  9. notevenclose

    notevenclose pfm Member

    One reason why I came to the conclusion the whole thing should be approached as a subsystem.

    Personally I thought it was interesting that someone proposed a theory which seemed to match my prior experiences of what I heard (or indeed, didn't hear). But it's not something which keeps me awake at night.
  10. mansr

    mansr Objectionist

    Whatever it is, FLAW is not the word I'd use to describe it.
  11. sq225917

    sq225917 Bit of this, bit of that

    He hasn't proposed a theory, that would involve a mechanism. He's just come up with a reason people couldn't hear something that doesn't exist anyway...
    narabdela likes this.
  12. notevenclose

    notevenclose pfm Member

    Me neither. I rarely feel strongly enough about any of this stuff to type in all caps.
  13. notevenclose

    notevenclose pfm Member

    Well, to be fair to JK, 'theory' was my choice of noun, not his.
  14. sq225917

    sq225917 Bit of this, bit of that

    Yeh, fantasy would have been more accurate
    adamdea, narabdela and mansr like this.

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