# Geshelli JNOG Review (Balanced DAC)

## Rate this DAC:

• ### 4. Great (golfing panther)

• Total voters
205

#### KSTR

##### Major Contributor
Noise is usually additive so tying four channels together would tend to increase the noise floor, not reduce it, particularly if the same data is streamed through all four channels
Not correct. Paralleling/combining N outputs reduces uncorrelated noise by a factor of sqrt(N). So, four outputs summed reduces noise by a factor of two.

#### AnalogSteph

##### Major Contributor
Paralleling/combining N outputs reduces uncorrelated noise by a factor of sqrt(N). So, four outputs summed reduces noise by a factor of two.
To clarify, this is because uncorrelated noise merely RMS sums (+3 dB for any doubling of #channels), whereas signal components are correlated and add in-phase (+6 dB per doubling) - the net result being that SNR is up 3 dB per doubling, or generally, √(N).

#### pseudoid

##### Major Contributor
Forum Donor
four outputs summed reduces noise by a factor of two
the net result being that SNR is up 3 dB per doubling
aka ...INCREASE by +3dB... opposite of 'reduction' [?]
[opposite of "increase" is "decrease"; then, what would be the proper antonym for "reduction"?]

#### Jimbob54

##### Master Contributor
Forum Donor
aka ...INCREASE by +3dB... opposite of 'reduction' [?]
[opposite of "increase" is "decrease"; then, what would be the proper antonym for "reduction"?]

#### pseudoid

##### Major Contributor
Forum Donor
doesn't really work because the opposite of "addition" is "subtraction".
I actually looked it up and the 4 antonyms cited are close and convenient but my question stands... or the proper antonym for reduction does NOT exist.
Not 'pro-duction' either. "Accession" = something added to an existing supply?
Etymology is cool!

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#### Lambda

##### Major Contributor
aka ...INCREASE by +3dB... opposite of 'reduction' [?]
[opposite of "increase" is "decrease"; then, what would be the proper antonym for "reduction"?]
Are you trying to be pedantic about semantics? do you relay not understand?
The Noise in relation to the signal is decreased by 3dB this is the same thing as saying the Signal is increased relative to the noise.
SNR or NSR

#### jmaz87

##### Member
I have the J2, the company is fine they are truly the nicest people to deal with ever. I did have to warranty J2 the gain wasn't changing on one channel but they did a board swap and sent it back asap it was literally days. granted I'm in Florida too but its yet another reason I chose them for my first balanced DAC.

funky inputs and lower output aside i'm very happy with it as a stack with erish and archel 2.5pro (didn't like it with my powered monitors at all)

I especially like that I can drop the J2 gain when i want to plug in IEM's into Archel and actually use the volume knob safely. i can pretty much leave it at 50% and just change J2 gain if im using Headphone.

overall its a nice product doing things others aren't like loading twice the Toslink inputs which I have appreciated in the past.

I would kill for a row of LED's as amir mentioned tho the square is easy to use but annoys me to this day...

#### MacCali

##### Senior Member
All of page 6's chat, not sure if you guys have seen the interviews they have. However, I do recall that they work strictly with what sounds good. The guy who handles there dacs and implementation etc, had some profound statements that we choose the dacs that are available. We give it to guy[i dont recall his name] he does his magic and whatever sounds the best is what they choose.

Honestly not sure how their ess dac will sound, based on the statements they made above; summarized. Cause this was supposed to be a better a option/sounding dac than the ess which you would assume they tried out. Yet they chose this and this was the result, you can only imagine if the ess was second best what that is going to produce o.o

#### jmaz87

##### Member
ess isn't just simply second best. at the time they were more expensive and ess was less transparent about there "tech" times have changed...

#### jtwrace

##### Major Contributor
Forum Donor
And speaking of chips, I heard at the Florida Audio Show that AKM is coming back online by end of summer so I'm sure you'll start to see many manufacturers start going back and/or offering both ESS and AKM units.

This is good all around for the industry IMO.

#### MacCali

##### Senior Member
And speaking of chips, I heard at the Florida Audio Show that AKM is coming back online by end of summer so I'm sure you'll start to see many manufacturers start going back and/or offering both ESS and AKM units.

This is good all around for the industry IMO.
Yea I spoke with Geno at the show, he said they were actually planning on doing a duel AKM chip design, but just scraped it at the end for the original JNOG. He said the AKM version is better.

He did say, like you mentioned, they are going to make a 4499 version of a DAC once the production is back online.

I told him they should do a duel 4497 cause that combo is the best possible measurements out of all AKM chips if implemented correctly.

We will see

#### jtwrace

##### Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Geshelli, a true family business at the Florida Audio Expo

Front Row from L: Joe (Geno's dad), Sherri and Daughter Rachel
Back Row from L: Geno and son Jake

#### Tortie

##### Active Member
Forum Donor
I'm going to say a few things about Geshelli Labs. None of them good. When this small outfit popped up on my radar a couple years ago I decided to read up on the company. I also watched at least one or two interviews with the Geshellis on Youtube. This is where the cringe factor began to materialize. It was this April 2020 sit down interview with Gino and Sherri that set off some red flags for me. During the interview Sherri, who is to my knowledge, not the electrical engineer in this duo dominated the discussion. Gino seemed uncomfortable and provided very little information. This struck me as abnormal. This was Gino's introduction to the community, or at least one introduction, and he was reticent and frankly mute. He let his wife wear the pants. Following that interview I any notion of buying a Geshelli device evaporated.

Now it wasn't just the bad PR presentation and lack of gumption that dissuaded me from buying a device from Geshelli. It was just the straw that broke the camel's back. There were and still are plenty of other red flags with Geshelli. One of them was product case design. Let's be frank here. The Geshelli devices look like homemade projects. They have been making amps and DACs for how many years now? Two, three, four years? And there's been little if any improvement in the design of the enclosures. John Seaber at JDS Labs mentioned in an interview last August that he abandoned the old metal case design for the O2 amp because it was in his words, "ugly". JDS Labs switched over to injection molded plastic enclosures when they introduced the Atom line several years ago and then invested in CNC equipment for the Element line. But here we are in 2022 and Geshelli is basically regurgitating the O2 enclosure design from over a decade ago. Even Schiit manages to obtain more elegance with their budget products.

I'll quickly run through the issues with Geshelli:

• As Amir pointed out in this review Geshelli is resorting to snake oil phraseology to coverup the inadequacy of the DAC implementation. When one of their earlier products manage to rank near the top of Amir's SINAD List Geshelli touted that success to perspective customers. Now, they have conveniently turned into science deniers.
• Upselling is another problem with Geshelli. They're business model comes across as a bit sleazy. Charging extra for a USB module for a DAC? For an extra \$50 no less. This is an essential fueature that should be standard on any modern DAC. Now they're selling wood enclosures. Are they an Ethan Allen subsidiary now? This is the tackiest thing since the shortlived aftermarket "woodie" earcup fad for Sennheiser headphones in the early 2000s.
• They're always out of stock...not because of demand...not because of the pandemic...but most likely because they can't manage the business or scale it properly.
• Nearly every product launch is delayed endlessly.
• The website design is bad. There's little pertinent information on specifications or product functionality.

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#### Jimster480

##### Major Contributor
Forum Donor
I'm going to say a few things about Geshelli Labs. None of them good. When this small outfit popped up on my radar a couple years ago I decided to read up on the company. I also watched at least one or two interviews with the Geshellis on Youtube. This is where the cringe factor began to materialize. It was this April 2020 sit down interview with Gino and Sherri that set off some red flags for me. During the interview Sherri, who is to my knowledge, not the electrical engineer in this duo dominated the discussion. Gino seemed uncomfortable and provided very little information. This struck me as abnormal. This was Gino's introduction to the community, or at least one introduction, and he was reticent and frankly mute. He let his wife wear the pants. Following that interview I any notion of buying a Geshelli device evaporated.

Now it wasn't just the bad PR presentation and lack of gumption that dissuaded me from buying a device from Geshelli. It was just the straw that broke the camel's back. There were and still are plenty of other red flags with Geshelli. One of them was product case design. Let's be frank here. The Geshelli devices look like homemade projects. They have been making amps and DACs for how many years now? Two, three, four years? And there's been little if any improvement in the design of the enclosures. John Seaber at JDS Labs mentioned in an interview last August that he abandoned the old metal case design for the O2 amp because it was in his words, "ugly". JDS Labs switched over to injection molded plastic enclosures when they introduced the Atom line several years ago and then invested in CNC equipment for the Element line. But here we are in 2022 and Geshelli is basically regurgitating the O2 enclosure design from over a decade ago. Even Schiit manages to obtain more elegance with their budget products.

I'll quickly run through the issues with Geshelli:

• As Amir pointed out in this review Geshelli is resorting to snake oil phraseology to coverup the inadequacy of the DAC implementation. When one of their earlier products manage to rank near the top of Amir's SINAD List Geshelli touted that success to perspective customers. Now, they have conveniently turned into science deniers.
• Upselling is another problem with Geshelli. They're business model comes across as a bit sleazy. Charging extra for a USB module for a DAC? For an extra \$50 no less. This is an essential fueature that should be standard on any modern DAC. Now they're selling wood enclosures. Are they an Ethan Allen subsidiary now? This is the tackiest thing since the shortlived aftermarket "woodie" earcup fad for Sennheiser headphones in the early 2000s.
• They're always out of stock...not because of demand...not because of the pandemic...but most likely because they can't manage the business or scale it properly.
• Nearly every product launch is delayed endlessly.
• The website design is bad. There's little pertinent information on specifications or product functionality.
You seem to be pretty raged at them... its a small business doing what they can? How long has JDS labs existed before they decided to make pro looking products. They weren't called crap just because of that...
I think their most recent product as you mentioned has issues and snake oil marketing is garbage.

However saying the whole company is crap because of an interview and a single product is pretty shortsighted imho.

I have one of their Amps... I think Archel2? It measured extremely well. I liked the acrylic enclosure as it looks very different from other audio products. I would still be using it today if it had an audio passthrough..... but alas it does not.

#### Tortie

##### Active Member
Forum Donor
You seem to be pretty raged at them... its a small business doing what they can? How long has JDS labs existed before they decided to make pro looking products. They weren't called crap just because of that...
I think their most recent product as you mentioned has issues and snake oil marketing is garbage.

However saying the whole company is crap because of an interview and a single product is pretty shortsighted imho.

I have one of their Amps... I think Archel2? It measured extremely well. I liked the acrylic enclosure as it looks very different from other audio products. I would still be using it today if it had an audio passthrough..... but alas it does not.

While perhaps I was little harsh in my delivery I think my points are valid. Even JDS Labs and Schiit's earliest super cheap products, excluding their altoids tin Cmoy portable, looked more polished than what Geshelli delivers to market in 2022. I think this company, small or not, has been left behind. Look at the price for this DAC. Do a cost benefit analysis. The consumer can obtain better performance, fit and finish from other small homebrewed companies such as JDS and Schiit for substantially less money \$\$\$.

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#### Tortie

##### Active Member
Forum Donor
@Jimster480

It appears that Geshelli changed gears last year. They parted ways with ASR's objective science and evidence based principles and made a pivot towards the dark side. The company apparently seeded that alternate reality forum with free samples. That would explain this statement.

#### Swtoby

##### Active Member
I'm going to say a few things about Geshelli Labs. None of them good. When this small outfit popped up on my radar a couple years ago I decided to read up on the company. I also watched at least one or two interviews with the Geshellis on Youtube. This is where the cringe factor began to materialize. It was this April 2020 sit down interview with Gino and Sherri that set off some red flags for me. During the interview Sherri, who is to my knowledge, not the electrical engineer in this duo dominated the discussion. Gino seemed uncomfortable and provided very little information. This struck me as abnormal. This was Gino's introduction to the community, or at least one introduction, and he was reticent and frankly mute. He let his wife wear the pants. Following that interview I any notion of buying a Geshelli device evaporated.

Now it wasn't just the bad PR presentation and lack of gumption that dissuaded me from buying a device from Geshelli. It was just the straw that broke the camel's back. There were and still are plenty of other red flags with Geshelli. One of them was product case design. Let's be frank here. The Geshelli devices look like homemade projects. They have been making amps and DACs for how many years now? Two, three, four years? And there's been little if any improvement in the design of the enclosures. John Seaber at JDS Labs mentioned in an interview last August that he abandoned the old metal case design for the O2 amp because it was in his words, "ugly". JDS Labs switched over to injection molded plastic enclosures when they introduced the Atom line several years ago and then invested in CNC equipment for the Element line. But here we are in 2022 and Geshelli is basically regurgitating the O2 enclosure design from over a decade ago. Even Schiit manages to obtain more elegance with their budget products.

I'll quickly run through the issues with Geshelli:

• As Amir pointed out in this review Geshelli is resorting to snake oil phraseology to coverup the inadequacy of the DAC implementation. When one of their earlier products manage to rank near the top of Amir's SINAD List Geshelli touted that success to perspective customers. Now, they have conveniently turned into science deniers.
• Upselling is another problem with Geshelli. They're business model comes across as a bit sleazy. Charging extra for a USB module for a DAC? For an extra \$50 no less. This is an essential fueature that should be standard on any modern DAC. Now they're selling wood enclosures. Are they an Ethan Allen subsidiary now? This is the tackiest thing since the shortlived aftermarket "woodie" earcup fad for Sennheiser headphones in the early 2000s.
• They're always out of stock...not because of demand...not because of the pandemic...but most likely because they can't manage the business or scale it properly.
• Nearly every product launch is delayed endlessly.
• The website design is bad. There's little pertinent information on specifications or product functionality.

My impression from the YouTube videos is very different. Sherri may not be the engineer, but she is a key member of the company. Your comment that she wears the pants strikes me as a bit sexist. I've found Geno to be plenty vocal in the several interviews I've seen. But I guess for you it didn't work because he wasn't wall to wall gabfast while his little lady was heard and not just seen.

I have no issue with the aluminum cases and the wood looks great in person. I switched from JDS partly because I found the Geshelli more solid feeling. Despite the "upcharge", the prices are still competitive with the EL Dac II which is \$300 and the J2 is \$300 with the added USB. So no issue there.

They reject science?? Because they say that we should have fun and that audio is an art? To me that's marketing. Every company does it. Their stuff still measures very well and appears perfectly transparent to me. I have no issue and not every buying consideration I make falls only to the almighty SINAD score.

As far as out of stock, the wait I had was no where near the 20 days. So that strikes me as a guideline. Nothing like the wait times for some of Schiit's stuff. I got my amp in a week. Their customer service is on par with JDS.

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#### Tortie

##### Active Member
Forum Donor
My impression from the YouTube videos is very different. Sherri may not be the engineer, but she is a key member of the company. Your comment that she wears the pants strikes me as a bit sexist. I've found Gino to be plenty vocal in the several interviews I've seen. But I guess for you it didn't work because he wasn't wall to wall gabfast while his little lady was heard and not just seen.

That 2020 interview was the only one I recall existing at the time. No one is expecting a "gabfest" but he came across as disengaged and disinterested. His wife had to fill the vacuum to keep the discussion flowing. Contrast this with the countless YouTube interviews with Jason Stoddard and the one I linked to with John Seaber. Those are engaging and enlightening.

#### MacCali

##### Senior Member

I purchased my first DAC from them, the original JNOG. I started to use it with coax and everything was dandy. Paid 50 for usb so I gave that a shot and noticed there’s a ticking sound during any audio transmission.

I reached out and they told me try the driver. I installed the driver on my pc and was using coax to feed it and coax stopped working. The driver did something to my pc so the usb output was not working on other devices for audio out.

So I reached out to them and said what gives. Gino was like well it’s your pc and there’s nothing we can do which is fair.

However I paid 50 dollars for that usb and to use it my computer basically becomes crippled. Did you not double check to see if this may have been issue.

I wasn’t trying to be rude, but asked for my money back on the USB. They said we can’t do that even after I clearly explained the situation.

Honestly I realize they are a small business and that’s the first time they ever use usb but if there’s a flaw whose fault is that?

My pc is just a standard windows 10, not sure what that driver is doing but either way I can’t use the usb without it and if I did use it I can’t use any other device.

Just kind of feel like the approach wasn’t right, they never apologized or tried to be considerate or worse thought I was a liar.

That’s why for me I was like this is dumb, I tried to support small business and basically got left in the dust. Losing one customer may not be anything to them but leads me to question their practices.

I can’t say how jds or Schitt would of handled it. But I’m certain it would have been in that manner. I know the usb was very limited on that first run of the JNOG as when I requested they had to check if it was still available to add to my unit.

So who knows how many people this may have affected and I am running a fairly common operating system

#### Swtoby

##### Active Member
That 2020 interview was the only one I recall existing at the time. No one is expecting a "gabfest" but he came across as disengaged and disinterested. His wife had to fill the vacuum to keep the discussion flowing. Contrast this with the countless YouTube interviews with Jason Stoddard and the one I linked to with John Seaber. Those are engaging and enlightening.
Yes, the Jason Stoddard YouTube videos are a key part of their marketing.

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