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Denafrips ARES II USB R2R DAC Review

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amirm

amirm

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Thread Starter #41
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#44
Nice. The Holo Audio May already proved that R2R DACs can measure quite well too. It is the current benchmark of R2Rs.

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...may-probably-the-best-discrete-r2r-dac.10161/
Too bad its a prototype. This matches Holo Audio's current offerings with slightly better DR. And seeing the May's current pricing with the various addons is stretching very close to Mola Mola territory.

I really want to see their power amplifier tested.
Me too. The preamp as well. I have the Hyperion and the only thing I can tell you its really quiet, can have my ears next to tweeter at full volume and zero hiss. Oh and it comes with a remote thats a glorified on/off switch which I am finding extremely useful.

Their self-posted APx measurement showed it matched the stated spec of SINAD of 100db~ and much more than the advertised power.
 

Francis Vaughan

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#45
Measuring the NOS mode would be really interesting. There is so much wrong with the rationale behind NOS, and yet so much BS talked about it, that some proper numbers would be quite helpful. Especially from a DAC that otherwise seems to be well designed.
 

digicidal

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#46
This isn't a mechanical watch. It's still just circuits. A mechanical DAC would be something.
I believe the analogy was more about the amount of time and effort required to design and produce the device in question - not so much the actual type of engineering required.

I actually like this analogy because in many ways a DAC is almost exactly like a watch... while their prices range from a few dollars to tens of thousands in their market... the performance differences (excluding those which arguably fail completely) can be measured in hundredths of a percentage point. :D Also the perceived value is subjective and almost entirely exclusive of how it performs it's task... with the most expensive and desirable models often failing miserably, while the inexpensive models are derided mostly for aesthetic reasons alone (or perceived lack of cache).

EDIT - To be fair however... that Apple dongle or Casio digital isn't ever going to be worth what you spent on it... even if it still works 50 years later... while a Rolex, etc. (and possibly a few esoteric DACs - though less likely) could even eventually be traded for a nice car or condo. ;)
 
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#47
Can't the same thing be said about most of the DACs that test decently on here?



Don't plenty of people buy DACs this price or higher that have 'high performance' that isn't really audible? Is it that different to buy a DAC with a lack of distortion that isn't audible or buy a DAC with some other 'feature' to the performance that isn't audible?

I don't see anything wrong with buying a DAC based on performance numbers just for performance numbers sake and I also don't see anything wrong with buying a DAC based on liking something about the implementation. In both cases the owners probably enjoy their DAC more because of those things.
I don't dispute any of your points, I'm just trying to understand the appeal of R2R specifically.
 

solderdude

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#48
People are lead to or believe that somehow sample values are more accurate when using ladder type converters and are lead to believe that DS is merely a cheap way of converting and sounds poorer.

Religion mostly fed by conversations between proponents and disgust for people claiming otherwise.

It is clear that performance is dependent on the implementation. It is also clear that there are poor ladder based and poor DS based (or other) conversion types. Likewise it is clear that both methods can produce top notch performance.

The problem lies in the subjective evaluations and the fact that everyone has an opinion, experience and 'religion' (or should I say preference for a certain line of thinking). That and a free choice of thinking accounts for the 'perceived differences and preferences' not so much the actual performance.
 

firedog

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#49
This is absolute hogwash. There are practical reasons to have a preamp between the dac and the an easy way to control volume for one. But adding one isn’t going to make it more “musical” that is once again psychoacoustics at work. You are imagining that your music sounds better.
Or it adds colortion-distortion that he finds pleasant and musical when it is part of the background sound mixed in with the music.
 

Tks

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#50
People are lead to or believe that somehow sample values are more accurate when using ladder type converters and are lead to believe that DS is merely a cheap way of converting and sounds poorer.

Religion mostly fed by conversations between proponents and disgust for people claiming otherwise.

It is clear that performance is dependent on the implementation. It is also clear that there are poor ladder based and poor DS based (or other) conversion types. Likewise it is clear that both methods can produce top notch performance.

The problem lies in the subjective evaluations and the fact that everyone has an opinion, experience and 'religion' (or should I say preference for a certain line of thinking). That and a free choice of thinking accounts for the 'perceived differences and preferences' not so much the actual performance.
Uh oh ;)
 

Doodski

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#51
Or it adds colortion-distortion that he finds pleasant and musical when it is part of the background sound mixed in with the music.
Maybe. I for one used the headphone output of a Sony CD player for months until I bought a Krell pre-amp and I noticed no difference between the two other than the Krell was a louder system.
 

YSC

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#54

Matias

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#56
Hello @amirm,

Thank you for your efforts to review the DENAFRIPS ARES II.

Best,
Alvin @ Vinshine Audio
Any chance of sending the Terminator? I am waiting a long time for this dac to be measured here. :)
 

Frank Dernie

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#57
Imagining or not, if it sounds sublime then that is what matters....aahhh, ignorance is bliss :p
Quite so. If you are convinced it sounds better and are enjoying it it doesn't much matter whether you are imagining the difference or not.
Obviously the componentry in the analogue output stage don't matter a fig if the output from the device is unaffected, but knowing some reassuringly fashionable circuitry is there will definitely help the imagination.
 
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