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MBL, dCS, Goldmund, Gryphon etc Ultra High End Equipment

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  #21  
Old 08-25-2014, 01:33 PM
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The DCS clock is a standard OCXO of pretty good spec.

Using the master clock input on the DCS clock, you can use an external master clock which might improve sound.

Options for master clock are:

1. GPS clock - not a good choice because of poor short term stability

2. Rubidium clock- can be a real improvement however basic rubidium also has poor short term stability and you really need something where rubidium and OCXO are working together to get better performance.

3. BVA OCXO clock which is ultimate short term stability but at a price. Only commercial unit designed for audio use costs $35k!

BVA really makes a huge difference to sound quality in removing any hint of digital edge.
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  #22  
Old 08-25-2014, 05:26 PM
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Originally Posted by jfrech View Post
I am very curious here. I have the Vivaldi Transport ordered...hopefully it'll be here in a week or so. I have kept my Scarlatti clock for the time being...I got to demo the Vivaldi Trans...and it made quite a difference in my system vs my dCS Scarlatti Trans...I don't know if the Vivaldi Clock...the clock specs to the Scarlatti are the same..the Vivaldi clock adds dual frequency outputs...which can be useful (but I can get the same results by pressing a button on Scarlatti to change the frequency and don't have to buy another cable)

Using the reference clock input I've always been curious about...

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jfrech, according to my dealer the Vivaldi clock is better then the Scarlatti. I have not tried both but when they did the Vivaldi, they improved the internal circuits and power supply compared to the Scarlatti.
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  #23  
Old 08-25-2014, 05:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by custodian View Post
The DCS clock is a standard OCXO of pretty good spec.

Using the master clock input on the DCS clock, you can use an external master clock which might improve sound.

Options for master clock are:

1. GPS clock - not a good choice because of poor short term stability

2. Rubidium clock- can be a real improvement however basic rubidium also has poor short term stability and you really need something where rubidium and OCXO are working together to get better performance.

3. BVA OCXO clock which is ultimate short term stability but at a price. Only commercial unit designed for audio use costs $35k!

BVA really makes a huge difference to sound quality in removing any hint of digital edge.
This is indeed an very exciting topic as pointed earlier in this thread. I am confused on this topic as a year ago I did experiment with the Antelope Rodium reference clock with my Vivaldi stack. At first I was impressed but after a few days of listening I felt the sound was colored a bit and could not understand why.

I called dCS directly since I had met the rep and he then had told me dCS apparently a while back looked into reference clock ... in the case the Antelope, he suggested its switching power supply was not ideal and even if you feed the dCS clock with a perfect 10Mhz signal, it still needs to be converted to 44.1 and 48khz internally using most likely a less then ideal chip set. otherwise not required when using the internal 44.1 clock directly. So while in theory using a reference should be better, they moved away from it.

I still would like to try it again and will look into some of the other choice you mention in your post. But, would it make any sense to any of you who experimented with this that the "conversion chip" that takes the 10Mhz to make it 44.1Khz inside the dCS clock may actually impact the desired result to the point using the internal being superior?

Are any of these reference clock you describe come with a linear power supply? I suspect why esoteric may have good result with their clock is because the Rodium reference is actually in the main Esoteric chassis, power by a linear power supply.

As you can see, many questions on this exciting subject!

Jacques
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  #24  
Old 08-25-2014, 07:39 PM
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Jacques
Interesting post.

You are right, however DCS use conversion electronics for the inbuilt OCXO to generate the 44.1 and 48 signals.

The Antelope rubidium clock actually doesn't have particularly good phase noise which means it will not be major improvement when used as master clock for a DCS system. In simple terms, rubidium will have better long term stability but that has no real value in this application. There are techniques to link the rubidium source with an OXCO to produce an external master clock which improves on the basic DCS clock. I've done this on both Scarlatti and Vivaldi clocks with good results.

However at this level, a BVA OCXO gives much better results.

One other option I've not looked at would be to replace the OCXO in the Vivaldi with a performance optimised version of the same component. That might be worth looking at.

In the external master clock, psu and cabling are all of key importance in tweaking performance. Commercial problem with BVA remains the high cost of the crystal which means market very limited. Currently only available audiophile clock is $35k. I'm sure it could be produced at maybe $20k but even then, sales volume very limited.
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  #25  
Old 08-25-2014, 08:01 PM
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Am I the only one that has no idea what this thread is talking about? It's in English but reads like Greek to me. Where can I go to get 'clocking' for dummies? This thread is also an other reminder that there are whole other levels of this science and hobby which I am clueless to.
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  #26  
Old 08-25-2014, 08:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crwilli View Post
Am I the only one that has no idea what this thread is talking about? It's in English but reads like Greek to me. Where can I go to get 'clocking' for dummies? This thread is also an other reminder that there are whole other levels of this science and hobby which I am clueless to.
crwilli, no worries I am confused too about this topic sometime! One good place to learn about digital clock and how they are use/important in digital playback for DAC like the dCS ones, is actually on dCS website.

If you go on dCS website and read a bit on the dCS Vivaldi "stack" (aka clock+upsampler+DAC+ transport) they explain what each unit does and why they have a separate component for the clock - to synchronize all the digital equipment together. Think of it this way: no clock or bad clock = everything bad about digital sound; while good clock = a digital playback that could rival with analog playback...

Hope this helps...
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  #27  
Old 08-25-2014, 08:12 PM
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Sorry. Didn't mean to complicate it.

I only got into this stuff when I had to scratch the urge to try the external master clock socket on the DCS system. It is inevitably a tricky subject. All I can say is that better short term accuracy = better sound.

Rubidium clocks don't necessarily improve sound because most of them don't improve short term accuracy.

Any of the external master clock options cost money so if you want to jump in, make sure you can try for a while first.
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  #28  
Old 08-25-2014, 08:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by custodian View Post
Jacques
Interesting post.

You are right, however DCS use conversion electronics for the inbuilt OCXO to generate the 44.1 and 48 signals.

The Antelope rubidium clock actually doesn't have particularly good phase noise which means it will not be major improvement when used as master clock for a DCS system. In simple terms, rubidium will have better long term stability but that has no real value in this application. There are techniques to link the rubidium source with an OXCO to produce an external master clock which improves on the basic DCS clock. I've done this on both Scarlatti and Vivaldi clocks with good results.

However at this level, a BVA OCXO gives much better results.

One other option I've not looked at would be to replace the OCXO in the Vivaldi with a performance optimised version of the same component. That might be worth looking at.

In the external master clock, psu and cabling are all of key importance in tweaking performance. Commercial problem with BVA remains the high cost of the crystal which means market very limited. Currently only available audiophile clock is $35k. I'm sure it could be produced at maybe $20k but even then, sales volume very limited.
A friend of mine has a recoding studio and I will ask him if he would know other brand of potential solution like you describe. Your comment about the Antelope would explain why I had mixed result with it. I kept scratching my head because logically I was so convinced there is a way to make the clock stock dCS clock sound better with a reference clock.

Would you be able or mind to expand what techniques/toold you use the improve on your Scarlatti and Vivaldi clock "link the rubidium source with an OXCO to produce an external master clock which improves on the basic DCS clock"?

How could one do that?

Jacques
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  #29  
Old 08-25-2014, 08:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by custodian View Post
Sorry. Didn't mean to complicate it.

I only got into this stuff when I had to scratch the urge to try the external master clock socket on the DCS system. It is inevitably a tricky subject. All I can say is that better short term accuracy = better sound.

Rubidium clocks don't necessarily improve sound because most of them don't improve short term accuracy.

Any of the external master clock options cost money so if you want to jump in, make sure you can try for a while first.
+1 ! I also only started to wonder after getting the dCS clock - but it is indeed a subject with very few folks having the experience for these things it would seems. I know when I started to ask about a reference clock to my dealer he was looking funny to me: what do you mean I just sold you a clock!

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  #30  
Old 08-25-2014, 08:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCR View Post
crwilli, no worries I am confused too about this topic sometime! One good place to learn about digital clock and how they are use/important in digital playback for DAC like the dCS ones, is actually on dCS website. If you go on dCS website and read a bit on the dCS Vivaldi "stack" (aka clock+upsampler+DAC+ transport) they explain what each unit does and why they have a separate component for the clock - to synchronize all the digital equipment together. Think of it this way: no clock or bad clock = everything bad about digital sound; while good clock = a digital playback that could rival with analog playback... Hope this helps...
i will do that! Thank you.

Custodian - never apologize for bringing state of the art and beyond to AA. We all want to learn. Some just do it faster than others
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Other - 5 Stillpoint Apertures, GIK Bass Traps, Vicoustics Waveguide panels, Shunyata Alpha Clock 75 1.5 meter BNC, Shunyata Alpha 1.5 meter USB, WW Gold Eclipse 7 SCs, WW Silver Electra 7 PCs, WW Silver Eclipse ICs; 3 X 20 Amp Power lines, PS Audio P10 & Dectet, 3 Sound Anchor stands, Powerports and numerous Noise Harvesters. Furutech Flex 50, Cable risers, HRS dampeners

TV Room Audio - Panasonic TC-P60GT50, McIntosh MX-121, MC7106, Revel F52 & C32, B&W LM1, Sonos Connect\W4S Remedy\iFI 9V Power, WW & Kimber cables, PS Audio Dectet
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