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Measurements of Aune S8 DAC

WolfX-700

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#1
In this thread Followed Aune S8

Actually, I had a bad impression of Aune products before.But since this product quotes ASR data for publicity, and there are some new features that are specifically advertised. I certainly want to buy one for measurement.

So ... look at things first

Front.jpg


Rear.jpg


This is a pure decoder. The built-in volume function I think is a function from the ESS9038 chip (instead of a separate preamp circuit).

In fact, I think the design of the Aune series is good.But the surface treatment part is not good enough. I bought all black ones. The main problem is that there will be various "scratches" on the surface-in fact, it is not the surface that is scratched but debris from your nails or skin. The mark left --- it can be easily wiped off-but it looks uncomfortable.

In this case, I would recommend buying silver units instead of black ones-but I think their silver looks "cheaper".:facepalm:

Anyway, measure it!

For the standard level of 4V / 2V, the measurement volume is set to 118 (120Full)

S8DashXLR.jpg


S8DashRCA.jpg


USBS8DashXLR.jpg

It's weird here. In the case of AES input, there is interference around the 450hz frequency. Considering that there is no such interference in the case of USB input, a reasonable question is: Is the AES input design of this machine poor? (Actually, interference still exists on coaxial and fiber optic cables, and amplitude and frequency have changed)

Dynamic-Range---No-Wt.jpg



Linearity-(-20.jpg




THD+N-Ratio.jpg




SMPTE-Ratio.jpg

:facepalm::facepalm::facepalm::facepalm::facepalm::facepalm::facepalm:

Multitone.jpg


FIR.jpg



J-Test FFT192K Avg16

J-TEST441.jpg


J-TEST48.jpg


USBJ-TEST48.jpg
 

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renaudrenaud

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#3
WolfX, some results are obvious for you, but for persons like me, it would be very helpful if you could comment a little the results. I read every of your test with avidity and thanks a lot for your job, but I confess I am lost sometimes. We do not have all the same knowledge in the same subjects. Thanks again and excuse me for my words, not against you, just to help some of us.
 
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WolfX-700

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#4
WolfX, some results are obvious for you, but for persons like me, it would be very helpful if you could comment a little the results. I read every of your test with avidity and thanks a lot for your job, but I confess I am lost sometimes. We do not have all the same knowledge in the same subjects. Thanks again and excuse me for my words, not against you, just to help some of us.
The reason why I reduce my comments (especially the measurement results) is that some people will take my (even very few) comments to attack competitors or even conduct personal attacks on me.

This has happened recently in some places.

So I prefer to discuss in threads rather than posts.

My personal opinion on Aune S8:
They strongly emphasized the so-called "Super PLL" technology in the publicity, and showed the noise floor as low as -170dbrA in the publicity map. But in fact, their implementation is neither elegant nor achieves what the PLL should achieve.

At the same time, ESS Hump is a widely solved problem (especially on the 9038Pro). The problem persisted on the machine I measured. So I have to let me down with this manufacturer (and product)
 

pozz

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#5
@WolfX-700 can you please not A-weight dynamic range? Or post the unweighted results so that we can compare to Amir's data?
 

WolfX-700

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#6
@WolfX-700 can you please not A-weight dynamic range? Or post the unweighted results so that we can compare to Amir's data?
Of course it can, and it should! My problem is that it seems that Amir's measurement is AES-17, but in the last discussion with RME_MC, he thought that it could not be called AES17 without CCIR weighting. So I was a bit confused ...

I want to be able to confirm Amir's weighting settings (CCIR or unweighted), and I will follow this standard on this project in the future.
 
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#7
@WolfX-700 can you please not A-weight dynamic range? Or post the unweighted results so that we can compare to Amir's data?
Perhaps Amir can share with him his custom filter for linearity as well.
 

bennetng

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#8
Yes. Without using the same filter the results are not comparable. Just for example I did a similar test on my Realtek codec, here are the results of 20 to 18 bits dithered and truncated tests without using a filter, they all look the same.
waveform pre filter.png


Differences show up only after I applied my own custom filter.
waveform post filter.png
 

MediumRare

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#11
The performance appears close to SOTA to me. The J-test spikes you objected to are all below -120 dB, most are below -130 dB. And the dreaded ESS hump is still far beyond audible. So overall, an exceptional performance to my amateur eye. All that being said, the competition among pure DACs is becoming an embarrassment of riches.
 

WolfX-700

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#12
The performance appears close to SOTA to me. The J-test spikes you objected to are all below -120 dB, most are below -130 dB. And the dreaded ESS hump is still far beyond audible. So overall, an exceptional performance to my amateur eye. All that being said, the competition among pure DACs is becoming an embarrassment of riches.
IMO: I'm not actually blaming "performance itself", but I'm mocking the performance of a promotional unit with "Super PLL" as the main appeal.

In fact I think this unit is in a similar price range. The only attraction is the promotion of its "Super PLL". In the promotion, relevant data from ASR is used to try to make potential users think that its related performance far exceeds common units.
 
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#13
Merry x mas to all members , especially professor wolfx to do the review and measurement during x mas , the measure result finally out .

It Seems nothing surprise even though they claim using Titan LAB PLL design . It just like a gimmick to promote Aune s8 . In the other hand , while the PLL enable , the music will mute for at lease 4-5 seconds to work out ! It seems very strange design . (As a comparison with gustard a22 it won’t happen)
 
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amirm

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#14
They strongly emphasized the so-called "Super PLL" technology in the publicity
Where do they say this? I have searched and can't find anything.
 

Blumlein 88

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#16
Merry x mas to all members , especially professor wolfx to do the review and measurement during x mas , the measure result finally out .

It Seems nothing surprise even though they claim using Titan LAB PLL design . It just like a gimmick to promote Aune s8 . In the other hand , while the PLL enable , the music will mute for at lease 4-5 seconds to work out ! It seems very strange design . (As a comparison with gustard a22 it won’t happen)
I don't know what they use, but taking a few seconds for tighter PLL makes sense. In such cases a looser lock on the PLL is done, and then over time a tighter lock on the incoming data stream is done.

Also, it might be worth trying a different SPDIF source, the 450 hz sidebands might be related to the source itself and not fully filtered out. I think this is a long shot, but it can happen.

EDIT: Looks like Aune's own graphs are showing the same 450 hz sidebands. So it is endemic to the device I would think. Too low to be a problem.
 
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amirm

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#17
I can't read Chinese. The graph above though is just showing lower noise floor of their DAC. They too are showing many spikes as your measurements. The lower noise floor does expose more spurious tones which are hidden in DACs with higher noise levels.
 

WolfX-700

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#18
I can't read Chinese. The graph above though is just showing lower noise floor of their DAC. They too are showing many spikes as your measurements. The lower noise floor does expose more spurious tones which are hidden in DACs with higher noise levels.
I did n’t explain clearly. First of all, you can see that the PLL and jitter are the focus of the promotion (even if Chinese is not considered)

However, in fact, in the 192KFFT / 16AVG I used, the measurement graphics did not look better. (Compared to other DACs)
 
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