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Gustard X16 Balanced MQA DAC Review

vkvedam

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Hi buddy - I'm in the UK and ordered mine on 1st November from China - arrived 17th. So far no issues whatsoever. Before ordering I read through this entire thread, all 154 pages which will give you masses of information.

However things to note: - Turn NOS off (unless you upsample your files) : Choose the L-Fast PCM filter (this seems to be the popular choice but let your ears choose) : there are no filters when playing DSD files : there's no Standby option, you need to turn off the switch at the back after your sessions - think it will utilise circa 15kwh otherwise : adjust volume using your amp - leave the X16 on "0db" : enjoy! - it certainly knocks the pants off my previous Chinese Kit-DAC, despite its es9038Pro chip and Singxer C-1 USB interface card and utilising a ISO REGEN/USPCB/Linear PSU - this straight out of the box. If you can avoid Fedex, they're absolutely c**p with their tracking and "operational delays".
What's the issue with using it as a pre-amp?
 

rozel

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I'll let others to advise as I don't use mine as a pre-amp. I only know that the X16's volume control is a Digital one, not Analogue and I prefer to use the volume control on my Amp. But I didn't say anything about not using it as a pre-amp. Keeping it on 0db plays nicely with my Amp
 
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Arvind

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X16 accepts raw mqa only through usb. I'm thinking of trying some mqa cds. I have read somewhere that any ordinary cd
transport/ player with digital out can output mqa stream from mqa cd. If that so, can anyone suggest good quality cd player/ transport with usb output?
 

MiLi

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What's the issue with using it as a pre-amp?
The volume control of X16 is digital data processing based and ruining signal/noise ratio and signal details.
Analog volume control over potentiometer or switched resistor ladder in your (pre)amplifier hasn't such negative impact on the signal.
 

Progronom

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I noticed such a bug. The handle-twister on the case inaccurately fulfills the switching. It should be like this: one click - one choice. But in fact: one click - 0, or 1 choice. It is not clear what it depends on at all.
You can see, for example, when adjusting the volume. If you turn it slowly, one click at a time, then the operation (value change) occurs randomly - 1,1,1,0,1,0,1,1,1,0,1,0...
Check on your X16.
 

RHO

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anphex

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On first sight I see no glaring difference to the X16?
 

RHO

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On first sight I see no glaring difference to the X16?
It has a different DAC chip. In how far that is audible is the question. I doubt it is.
But the power button is an upgrade.
Seems there is also an H18 coming. (there is one shown in the pictures)
 

prateek

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Sorry for off-topic but ... anyone noticed Gustard has a new dac? X18:
@ceausuc There is also an accompanying H18 headphone-amp/preamp. #speculation

1638799348844.png
 

ceausuc

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It has a different DAC chip. In how far that is audible is the question. I doubt it is.
But the power button is an upgrade.
Seems there is also an H18 coming. (there is one shown in the pictures)

It looks like Gustard's response to Topping D90SE. It's advertised as having the same 123 sinad but 150$ cheaper :)
Will see :)
 

Skinner001

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Sorry for off-topic but ... anyone noticed Gustard has a new dac? X18:
Ah, well, companies have to iterate and come out with new products - even if in this case it's pretty unnecessary, but we live in an age where you really don't need to push out new dacs multiple times a year (like Topping). But more options is nice to have as consumers I guess - just find it all less and less interesting.
 
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