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Musetec Audio (LKS Audio) MH-DA005 Review (DAC)

Rate this DAC:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 193 84.3%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 23 10.0%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther

    Votes: 2 0.9%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 11 4.8%

  • Total voters
    229

HarmonicTHD

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…. This thread turned into a seemingly endless stream of newly arriving audiophools who come here musing about the alleged divine properties of a proven inferior product without proof to the opposite and without a shred of willingness of trying to understand why the product is deemed technically inferior …. very tiring to say the least … would not mind to close the thread.
 
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amirm

amirm

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@amirm
I am forwarding the user manual to you, it is indicated that the possible configurations foresee the use of BW01, BW02, BW03 in PCM.
You have only tested BW02 right?
Do you know what any of that means? Have you read the response from the designer?
 

Todd k

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as being the sacrificial lamb in this dac fiasco I wanted to give a shout out to Jason at Midwest audio. He is the musetec us distributor and sold me the dac. He is accepting the return of the dac and has promised a refund. He was fully aware that the dac was coming to amir for review. He like I was surprised and disappointed in the review. Jinbo the designer of the dac is also aware of the less than favorable review and will look into the spec discrepancy. Or so he says. Anyhow thanks again Jason for your help.
 
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amirm

amirm

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many test tones are used in my review. They point to clear design problems with no benefit whatsoever as far as fidelity. I suggest not jumping into a discussion like this without requisite knowledge.
 

BDWoody

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Billy Budapest

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I give up attempting to vanquish this wrong-headed view that DACs have a “sound”, and that ears prevail over measurements when it comes to this particular component. Your position is not just unscientific but it is completely ignorant about how DACs work. So at this point your insistence on acting snooty about your superior wisdom compared to the rest of us is starting to make me feel Schadenfreude at the thought of you getting bilked out of as much money as possible. So please, ignore me and proceed!
If a DAC’s performance in the digital or analog domains is so poor as to lead to noise or distortion that creeps past the threshold of audibility, then we can say that the DAC sounds different than other DACs that do their job correctly. But otherwise, the measurable differences in DACs do not result in sonic differences, as you (and I) have said.

It’s not even physics that dictates this result. It’s math.

I think most people’s claims that they hear differences in DACs are due to differences in output levels and inadequate (or lack of attempt of) level matching.

Also, the psychoacoustic biases mentioned by Amir many times come into play. It’s not the DACs that change, it’s the listener.

Oops, I didn’t see @tonycollinet post above which my post pretty much duplicates.
 

srkbear

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If a DAC’s performance in the digital or analog domains is so poor as to lead to noise or distortion that creeps past the threshold of audibility, then we can say that the DAC sounds different than other DACs that do their job correctly. But otherwise, the measurable differences in DACs do not result in sonic differences, as you (and I) have said.

It’s not even physics that dictates this result. It’s math.

I think most people’s claims that they hear differences in DACs are due to differences in output levels and inadequate (or lack of attempt of) level matching.

Also, the psychoacoustic biases mentioned by Amir many times come into play. It’s not the DACs that change, it’s the listener.
Yes! Unmatched output voltages have tripped me up in ABX tests innumerable times. When one DAC is substantially quieter, I have to push the volume up on my amp to compensate, and that subsequently moves the amp into a completely different segment of its own gain curve. The noise floor is increased, clipping is a risk, the highs get more sibilant and energized, all because I’m pushing my amp towards it distortion threshold. It’s why I chose the Topping D90se over the Gustard x26pro—that half a volt difference in output. The Topping gave me more clean headroom and was better matched to my amp.
 
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Hello srkbear,
this is really very exciting. Here at asr I can actually learn something new every day!
Many thanks for that
 

Endibol

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Does your Topping DAC sounds significantly better than your Mark Levinson DAC?
That‘s a very interesting question indeed… But I expect Amir to reply that there is no difference because all good DAC’s don’t add or change anything to the sound.
 

Timbo2

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… I fear there will be another one soon … ;)
Well best I can tell there are roughly five different "fudous" that can return depending on how you'd like to spell it in Japanese.

不動: ふどう
(P, adj-no, n) immovable, motionless, firm, unwavering, unshakable, steadfast, (P, n, abbr) Acala (Wisdom King), Fudō, fierce Buddhist deity

浮動: ふどう
(adj-no, n, vi, vs) floating

不同: ふどう
(adj-na, adj-no, n) difference, diversity, irregularity, disorder

婦道: ふどう
(n) woman's duties

不道: ふどう, ぶどう, ぶとう
(adj-na, n, arch) inhuman, immoral, unreasonable, outrageous, wicked, (n, arch) barbarity (one of the eight unpardonable crimes, incl. killing three people in one family, or dismembering a corpse)

The poster here likely being the first or the last depending on your point of view.


 

srkbear

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This may indeed be true, but so far no one has provided objective evidence to support it.
Yes, you‘ve said that twice now, and I still don’t know what you mean. What evidence do you think we need? Same original master, same digital sample, same decoding process (back to the original analog master). Amir’s testing evaluates how accurately that is being done.

Of course we have waveform data on the net results of this ADC-DAC process. And as far as measurements go, we have jitter, linearity, all the way to multi tone to assess this outcome. What magic sauce are you expecting to affect the end result between one DAC to another, other than error?
 

Garrincha

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Blind ABX
Yes, passing a blind ABX test professionally set up between two +-0.1dB level matched Dacs in the otherwise identical Hifi chain would be really the proof that there are any audible differences. Alas, nobody has managed this yet, so it remains to prove for the contender (the one who claims that there are sound differences) that he/she is able to pass the blind ABX test. Yet, nobody came up with it so far, but many negative results have been published.

I personally have done not professionally set up test, but some lower quality ones I did and it is really an eye-opening experience that leaves you less confident in the ability of your own critical listening. Very worthwile. I once sold a recently purchased headphone amp (german Lehmann Linear) which was supposed to sound all that great after comparing it with the headphone amp output of my integrated T+A 1530 amp and I really could not find any audible difference.
 
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srkbear

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Blind ABX
I hear you, but given the number of DAC combinations there’d be to test, the number of factors that would need to be controlled and the sample sizes such experiential testing would require (and the fact that it’s in the industry’s interest NOT to fund such studies), I think the audio waveform nulls are a perfectly acceptable substitute. If the analog waveform is moving air the same exact way then the sound will be the same.
 
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