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Benchmark Stack

dallasjustice

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#41
Do you find that connection pretty transparent given the signal is going thru an extra piece of gear before reaching a different end of line DAC compared to not using the Hilo as a Passthru?
It’s hard to say. But certainly the benchmark is no slouch. In fact, if you look at the benchmark DAC 3 Stereophile measurements, the lowest jitter was measured over spdif, not USB. I’m sure neither is audible. I need 6 analog channels. The Hilo can do 6 analog out. But I’d have use the headphone out, which is too goofy for me. So the AES brings in another 2 high quality channels.
 

dallasjustice

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#42
For that connection what are you setting the volume/output pots to within the Hilo?
I have both line and monitor outs set at 24dbu. That’s a lot of voltage. But when you factor in the DSP used, it works out to about right. I always level match using REW pink noise. For example, I can adjust subwoofer volume to match.
 

cjf

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#43
I have both line and monitor outs set at 24dbu. That’s a lot of voltage. But when you factor in the DSP used, it works out to about right. I always level match using REW pink noise. For example, I can adjust subwoofer volume to match.
Thanks for the info Dallas.

I've read that the XLR Line Outs on the Hilo are supposed to be superior to the Monitor Outs due to the Line Outs not having any volume control in the path and that they are using a two DAC per channel configuration. Supposedly the Monitor and Headphone Outs only use one DAC per channel and are tied to the digital attenuator.

In your experience with the Hilo would you say the Line Outs offer better SQ then the Monitor Outs? What would be main the reason to use Monitor Out over Line Out while using subs in a configuration like yours?

Thanks again
 

dallasjustice

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#44
In your experience with the Hilo would you say the Line Outs offer better SQ then the Monitor Outs? What would be main the reason to use Monitor Out over Line Out while using subs in a configuration like yours?
I need all 6 channels. So monitor outs go to subs, line outs will go to M2 midwoofers and DAC 3 go to M2 compression drivers.

The monitor outs have the option of digital or analog volume control. The specs are a little better for line outs.
 

dallasjustice

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#46
Can you use the Benchmark amp as a monoblock and biwire a speaker?
Yes. You can do that. The speakon connector is a four pole. So you could biwire that way or from the terminals. I use the speakon.
 

Sal1950

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#50
That's just an insane photo, really hits home the difference in size.
The Pass 100.5 really is a work in industrial art though. What a beauty.
A pair makes for the perfect audio alter. LOL
 

cjf

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#51
Hello Dallas,

I'm wondering if you have been able to get the Lynx Hilo to pass DSD/DOP signals thru its AES OUT into the Benchmark DAC3 successfully?

I've tried to use the AES OUT of my Hilo to pass DSD/DOP to an AES IN of my Meitner DAC and have had no luck in doing so while using JRiver. The track will play but no sound is produced. The "DSD" screen is active on the Hilo during these attempts.

Also, I believe I've read in the past that you were using JRiver's "Internal" VOL control with your setup. I'm curious if you've noticed if the DAC3 is accepting and taking full advantage of its 32Bit architecture while receiving signal from JRiver's VOL control in such a way that is not tossing out the Bits received beyond 24 like it would with a 24Bit DAC architecture device? According to the Spec sheet for the DAC3 it only accepts 24bit word length on its various digital inputs despite being a 32Bit DAC. I guess the best way to tell would be if you reduce VOL level in JRiver up to about -66dbfs and notice any resolution losses along the way or not?

Lastly, have you tried the DAC3 with a Linux based server/streamer by chance and if so does it operate in USB 2.0 mode with the built-in ALSA drivers found in Linux?

Thanks for your thoughts.
 
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#55
Neat. What is the display on the top left box saying?
The top silver box is a custom home theater PC. A-Tech Fabrication built the beautiful chassis for me, and I put the PC together, wrote a module to display stuff from JRiver on the VFD you are asking about, wrote a module to control and display volume, etc...

Xilica is good stuff. I assume you have a fully active setup. More details please.
Correct, I completely removed the passive XOs from the speakers. The high-med-low filters are all FIR (main benefit of the XD series over the XP series), and the woofers also cross (low order bessel filter to minimize any impact on phase) to 5 time aligned and level matched subwoofers to even further lower distortion. Five subs are not for more SPL, but to further lower distortion caused by room effects (such as ringing and any nulls below about 200Hz). Minimizing room issues allowed me to have a response like this without any EQ (no kidding), and a LF decay time that is world class (as in very tactile and realistic). It seems very few people can setup subwoofers to sound good, but no worries, I use REW (Room EQ Wizard) and do it correctly. The five subs are also elevated off the floor so as to improve the waterfall plot even more.

You can see a sample of the THD measurements here (measured acoustically at the main listening position). Even very low frequencies remain well below 1% (20Hz is close to .44%), with 80Hz at .23%. Most of the mid-range is below .1% at 90dB. If you are used to electrically measured THD this sounds high, but remember it includes the room impact too so it is actually very impressive.

FRONT RIGHT THD AT MLP NO EQ.jpg


The volume is handled via an RME HDSPe 16in/out AES PCI-e card and the wonderful RME Totalmix application using RME's ASIO driver for Windows 10, and it uses an internal 42 bit DSP on the RME card! Volume is controlled and displayed by my home automation server over the network by talking to the RME Totalmix application. http://www.rme-audio.de/en/products/hdspe_aes.php

Right now, I am using 6 channels from the RME PCI-E card that feeds the Xilica XD4080s using AES (to minimize any unnecessary D/A and A/D conversions). The 5 of the 6 channels feed 5 speakers that are each actively tri-amped (so 10 amps were needed), and the other channel is a mono signal that gets split to 5 outputs, then delayed and level matched appropriately for each of the five subs. This took 3 Xilica 4x8 units, the one rack just shows two. There is a rear rack for the rear speakers that has a third XD4080.

Of course the PC is optimized to lower latency, and I'm using Windows 10 LTSB addition to get rid of the stuff MS puts that no one wants. All connections are made using custom length cables I made using Canare Star-Quad cable and are housed in custom racks I built. Even the power cables were cut to minimize length and keep things tidy.

The PC can also do UHD playback (I use JRiver and MadVR for video rendering). It just can't decode Atmos, but hopefully someday there will be a software based Atmos and DTS-X decoder.
 
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RayDunzl

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#60
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