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ASR/amirm has opened my eyes.

afinepoint

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Hello to all,

Yes I've just registered and though this is my first post I've visited and read ASR for some time. It has always been a part of my research for gear. This is not a trolling. I wasn't sure where best to post so moderators kindly move it as required.

I've read the subjects here, tucked away the data and comments and continued on my way. I do feel however the need to chime in on the review of the PS Audio Gain Cell from years ago. I know it's an older post but I've just started researching DACs and the Gain Cell among them. Being the replies in that post are well over 130 pages I thought to simply make a new post as I was not sure if my reply would even be seen.

Why comment on what is a well worn post? Because I read digested and had a revelation which has profoundly changed my opinion on equipment reviews.

In that post amirm was asked if he had done listened to the DAC to which he replied he didn't have the time. At first that annoyed me as how could you review a piece of "audio" equipment with hearing it. That's half of a review. I left and thought about things for sometime and then came to my revelation. He didn't have to listen to the Gain Cell nor any piece of equipment. That's not it seems his purpose. He is giving and explaining the raw data and letting the reader decide what to do with it. His listening would only tell me what his ears heard.

I realized going strictly by a reviewer"s aural experience is like asking him how he liked his meal. Sit people around a table and give them the exact same dish and you'll Iikley get different opinions. Too salty, not salty enough, too spicy, too bland etc. Now I will say like this meal if there is a consensus among reviewers that agree the speakers for instance sound bright or the pre amp is giving the music a sense of warmth then it probably is. There is solid agreement across the board that tubes add warmth. So they do.

I appreciate what amirm is doing and find worth in it. Do I understand all the graphs and lingo? No, but that's on me to figure out.

I have visited and posted in the PS Audio forum asking for input on the M series of amplifiers. I also found worth in those replies but they were subjective so I had to take them for that.

I will state there is a serious Hatfields and McCoy's feud between these two forums which makes it more difficult to filter facts. Yelling and hurling insults dilutes the credibility of those doing so and stains the validity of their comments and too the platform in this case the forum. This circling of the wagons is needless. Opinions are just that. I believe it was a Seafair that casted a dissenting view and was absolutely pummeled which immediately put him/her on the defensive. We can certainly agree to disagree.

PS Audio"s reply by Paul using the word poo and his refusal to address amirm's response left me disgusted. I definitely will not be buying that Gain Cell which I had been researching. Further it puts the purchase of a set of M1200s in jeopardy. His comments really put me off. I also have always found his videos condescending. Why can't he just answer the question without pontificating.
I've called PS Audio more than once before and spoken with the sales/tech and I felt they were telling me what I wanted to hear. I'll probably ask about those M1200 amps here in a separate post.

Fortunately I have a backup amp should the M1200s fall through. Tonewinner AD 1PA.

In conclusion thanks to amirm and ASR. Keep up the good work.

Thank again.

Afinepoint
 

AdamG

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Welcome Aboard @afinepoint. We are happy you chose to join our merry group. It looks like you have a great grasp of what we are about here. Give the Measurements and Performance data to the reader, commercial free with no endorsements or collaborations, and let the reader decide what that means to them. Well said Sir.

You mentioned that you were not completely up to speed on how to read and interpret/understand the Graphs and Charts. Our Host Amir has done a few instructional videos that might help you over the learning curve. They are linked below for your convenience.












 
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NTK

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Welcome to ASR!

Just would like to let you know that the PS Audio M1200 is a PS Audio buffer plus an IcePower 1200AS1 power amplifier module, which does all the heavy lifting. The 1200AS1 is being sold by IcePower for at $264-380/each (1 and 12 pcs pricing).

PS Audio's current asking price for this is $6,998 a pair. I'll let you be the judge on the value proposition.

inside_view_M1200s.png
 

Matias

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Welcome to ASR.

Adding to NTK's post, even if you want a fully assembled 1200AS2 amp, Nord for example has it for £749 without the tube adding harmonics.

But I would definitely go Purifi or NCoreX instead.
 

Zensō

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Welcome to ASR. Besides learning to understand the graphs and charts, I believe it‘s also of vital importance to understand how we humans perceive sound. Here’s an article that might be enlightening:


You might also want to take a few blind ABX tests to get some real world experience with the limits of your hearing:


Have fun!
 

voodooless

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Welcome @afinepoint :p

If I may make an observation? In a sense, @amirm/ASR has actually thought you to close your eyes :cool:. You learned that this industry is highly subjective. You also learned that the beneficiaries of this being so, are highly motivated to keep it that way at all costs, and it's starting to not look good on them.

As for amps and DACs, I'm sure the ASR crowd is willing to help you find something suitable with excellent performance and value. Just ask :)
 
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afinepoint

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Welcome to ASR!

Just would like to let you know that the PS Audio M1200 is a PS Audio buffer plus an IcePower 1200AS1 power amplifier module, which does all the heavy lifting. The 1200AS1 is being sold by IcePower for at $264-380/each (1 and 12 pcs pricing).

PS Audio's current asking price for this is $6,998 a pair. I'll let you be the judge on the value proposition.

inside_view_M1200s.png
I can get the M1200s for $4200. Still seems rather pricey.
 

NiagaraPete

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I can get the M1200s for $4200. Still seems rather pricey.
You could buy 6 LA90 Topping amps for that 4200. And have the best amp tested to date. That said, I don’t own one nor do I know of the reliability.
 
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afinepoint

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Welcome to ASR.

Adding to NTK's post, even if you want a fully assembled 1200AS2 amp, Nord for example has it for £749 without the tube adding harmonics.

But I would definitely go Purifi or NCoreX instead.
Sounds good. I'd Iike to go monoblock with the ICE module somewhere in the high hundreds for power. I don't feel I need the 1200W provided by the M1200s but it would nice to have decent headroom. I'll look about their site. Thanks.

Are the M1200s worth it at any price? Maybe that question should be a different post.
 

amirm

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Folks have made it a point to say "Amir doesn't listen." I of course listen to many classes of products from speaker to headphones and headphone amplifiers. There, audible differences are not in dispute (in former two at least). And what I do is try to correlate measurements to listening and tuning using EQ. For other classes of products, I sometimes listen (such as cables and even some DACs including a PS Audio) but in general, any listening test is going to be overwhelmed by sighted bias than any difference if it exists at all. In that regard, I would be producing garbage results that I can't defend. So as you say, I just do the engineering analysis and show whether noise and distortion were pumped into the audio chain for no good reason or not.
 
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afinepoint

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Just read a reply in a post regarding Class A amps from Thor. He did the math on the Tonewinner. I guess I can scratch that one too.

The education continues.
 

MarkS

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The bottom line is that almost all properly functioning solid-state electronics operated within their stated ranges (most importantly, power amps not driven into clipping) sound the same to almost all listeners. Their tiny errors are almost always well below the threshold of audibility.
 
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afinepoint

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The bottom line is that almost all properly functioning solid-state electronics operated within their stated ranges (most importantly, power amps not driven into clipping) sound the same to almost all listeners. Their tiny errors are almost always well below the threshold of audibility.
Yet as tested by amir that Gain Cell DAC was well off the mark of its advertised specs. So manufacturer stats need verification. Especially where $$$$+ is being spent.
 

Timcognito

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I will state there is a serious Hatfields and McCoy's feud between these two forums which makes it more difficult to filter facts.
That's nothing compared with whats going over here. Have to admit Amir holds his ground well but I am biased.
 

CtheArgie

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That's nothing compared with whats going over here. Have to admit Amir holds his ground well but I am biased.
This one is ridiculous. It is extremely "fatiguing", as they say.
 

pseudoid

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Yes I've just registered and though this is my first post I've visited and read ASR for some time.
Welcome aboard.
Let me caution you in advance that no one will fuss over you until you post a credible audiophools (or snake oil) product in our running lists.;)
 

Todd k

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That's nothing compared with whats going over here. Have to admit Amir holds his ground well but I am biased.
Yes that audiogon thread is a first class shit show with Amir eviscerating most of their lame insults. I have been a member over there since their advent and what an embarrassment from those members. ASR is like fresh oxygen compared to their blather. I have to admit it was sorta fun like watching a car crash kinda of way. I only wade around over there for pure entertainment value these days. So glad to have jumped off that train wreck of bad audio advice.
 

Doodski

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Yes that audiogon thread is a first class shit show with Amir eviscerating most of their lame insults. I have been a member over there since their advent and what an embarrassment from those members. ASR is like fresh oxygen compared to their blather. I have to admit it was sorta fun like watching a car crash kinda of way. I only wade around over there for pure entertainment value these days. So glad to have jumped off that train wreck of bad audio advice.
I don't think I have been to Audiogon and I will probably never go there. The commentary about it has been horrendous. :facepalm: I'll spare myself the time and energy. Besides ASR I have videos ongoing and music ongoing while I read ASR and that's more than enough to occupy my brain. :D
 
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