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Review and Measurements of Geshelli ENOG2 Pro DAC

Veri

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#81
Steve's all about minimizing jitter
I'm just really really sceptical we can hear jitter -130dB down whether it has a big sideband, a smaller one, is 'precise' or 'ultra precise'.

As a general rule, if it isn't broken, it will probably sound fine. More than fine, even.... but then who do I sell this $1300 usb device to?
 

graz_lag

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#82
Yes. I believe in seeking high value components, which I include the Empirical Audio parts as high value for what they do ... The thing is ... I'm not sure how relevant a super fine USB to S/PDIF (and i2S) reclocker-converter is with today's finer, reasonably priced DACs that test well here at ASR like the new Gustard ...
I am a big fan of quality USB-S/PDIF bridges, have been using them for years and still doing so today ...
My most hi-tech one (supposedly) was the WEISS INT204, worths $2,000 or so, 2016.
However, after comparing it within my setup with a much (very much ...) cheaper bridge, the F-1 from Singxer, have been totally incapable of hearing any difference between the two.
Happily sold the WEISS INT204 then ...

My feeling is that these DAC designers do not pay full attention to the USB card implementation, for whatever reason.
The same feedback seems abt. the Gustard X26, for which the external bridge - from Gustard as well (U16), seems to offer more satisfaction to the listeners over the on-board USB card.

All that to say that the feedback you are reporting is surely interesting.
 
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Veri

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#83
The same feedback seems abt. the Gustard X26, for which the external bridge - from Gustard as well (U16), seems to offer more satisfaction to the listeners over the on-board USB card.
I feel the U16 is vastly overstated and perhaps artificially hyped, besides the raving reviews you find many people with hardware problems / bugs ... hopefully someone sends amir one!
 
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#84
I believe that when it comes down to being able to hear a certain db of jitter and noise, nothing compares to actual hands on experience. Until you have listened to something in comparison to another to a great affect, only then can you really have an valuable opinion, no?

This numbers game here... whether you are able to hear a certain level of change in db, the sound at ANY level is affected whether or not you're able to 'hear' it or not. It changes the waves of sound no matter what your ears are able to perceive. So ultimately it is changing the sound that you are hearing but whether you're able to tell it apart from another devices performance will come down to your own experience.

PS. Can't wait till Geshelli puts out that version of ENOG DAC will all I/O on the back of device. :)
 

Veri

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#85
I believe that when it comes down to being able to hear a certain db of jitter and noise, nothing compares to actual hands on experience. Until you have listened to something in comparison to another to a great affect, only then can you really have an valuable opinion, no?
I have auditioned many devices with severely varying amounts of jitter ranging from 8year old sound blaster and logitech to current topping, jds labs, musical fidelity, benchmark, cambridge audio, holo audio ...

It's not like you connect a source with low jitter and feel "wow, the timing on this thing, WOW". Just, no.
On the other hand, listen to an ATH-AD2000 or electrostat and you really hear the speed of the driver...
 
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#86
I believe that when it comes down to being able to hear a certain db of jitter and noise, nothing compares to actual hands on experience. Until you have listened to something in comparison to another to a great affect, only then can you really have an valuable opinion, no?

This numbers game here... whether you are able to hear a certain level of change in db, the sound at ANY level is affected whether or not you're able to 'hear' it or not. It changes the waves of sound no matter what your ears are able to perceive. So ultimately it is changing the sound that you are hearing but whether you're able to tell it apart from another devices performance will come down to your own experience.
Relating, I've gone through small incremental changes over time that sometimes made surprisingly obvious improvements. One was putting an ADUM4160 USB isolating device in line between the host PC and a compatible USB receiver, in this case an inexpensive USB to S/PDIF converter based on a CM6631A like Schiit has used for years. Both parts cost something like $125 together. Then running both the ADUM isolator and USB converter by the downstream USB connection on a linear PSU. The host side of the isolator was powered by the PC while the isolated side and downstream power was provided by the LPSU and a linear regulator on the ADUM board. The ADUM was ground isolated too. There was no electrical connection to the computer. Then all that run into an evil Schiit Bifrost Uber by coax S/PDIF. That setup was obviously A LOT better than before the isolator was in line. The bloom became much more significant. When I tried the ADUM isolator straight to the Bifrost USB the bloom collapsed noticeably displaying something less adequate about Schiit's implementation of the same receiver. Just plugging the Bifrost into the PC by USB was woefully lacking. There was a clear improvement using just the CM converter by coax S/PDIF instead of the Bifrost USB. It made me wonder about those who praised the Bifrost by its USB. Much like I've wondered about those who think they're getting excellent performance with a coax or Toslink cable bridging a PC and a DAC with no better reference. I believe I read Schiit's newest USB revision uses isolation somewhere in the circuit. Using the same CM receiver. I have no experience with it.

I used that setup for years between using the Off Ramp 3 and 5. It was a huge improvement over the OR3 and the OR5 was a huge improvement over the ADUM isolator with CM converter. I'm certain the audible differences weren't hallucinations. The improvements were genuinely apparent.

The ADUM4160 USB isolator is a chip created for medical applications and limited to the USB 2 spec. It's not compatible with all USB-S/PDIF converters. I just lucked into it working with the CM chip. It doesn't work with the Off Ramp 5.

Sorry about derailing the OP. FWIW I find the ENOG2 a much better sounding DAC over the Bifrost Uber.

Hey, Steve has been here!

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...review-a-synchro-mesh-s-pdif-re-clocker.7006/
 
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Veri

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#87
I'm certain the audible differences weren't hallucinations. The improvements were genuinely apparent.
ALL people writing subjective experiences are "certain" their experience was genuine, that does NOT mean it is true. Our brains are very easily fooled..

That setup was obviously A LOT better than before the isolator was in line. The bloom became much more significant.
What does this even mean??
 
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#88
@Veri No. This does not make it true for all applications. YMMV. But I will say that my trials with an LPS and ENOG2 are TRUE in my experience. It is not an opinion, it is a fact. To the viewer and reader it is up to them to decide whether or not such a thing is worth investing into. I'm not going to share something to simply advertise or brag about without having a significant impact. When I hear something and I am shaken by the sound and I think to myself "SOMEBODY NEEDS TO HEAR THIS." Yeah. I'm going to shout about it because it has made an OBVIOUS difference, and it has worked for me. Still, like you say, this does not make it true that it WILL change the sound for somebody else, but it has for me and and I will share.

This is about the ENOG2 PRO and my post has been about my positive experience with it and the addition of an LPS.

@Newk Yuler I LOVE that you speak of the 'bloom' of audio! This is just what I heard when I used the LPS for the ENOG! It's like a blanket of mud or a thick screen was uncovered from the DAC and you could finally hear what was ment to be heard! Oh yes I can relate to this.
 

Veri

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#89
@Veri No. This does not make it true for all applications. YMMV. But I will say that my trials with an LPS and ENOG2 are TRUE in my experience. It is not an opinion, it is a fact.
Those two things are opposites. You can't state 'facts' that way o_O

Your obvious is not my obvious. Amir just wrote up a thread on LPS and their effect some days ago.. he did not recommend purchasing one.
I owned an sbooster and was very glad to get rid of it at ~buying price. Made no difference to me. Very well built though, oozing quality for a psu..
 
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#90
@Veri Alright sorry if this is confusing. Sometimes I don't think I'm able to help understand or deliver a tone over the net as accurately as I'd like.

What I'm saying is that not everyone's experience will be the same, this is true.

When I reached out to Geno from Geshelli Labs he mentioned that he was looking into a new method for power and that I should try the iFi iPower because of the good things he has heard coming from it, so I bought one, tried it, wasn't thrilled on the very small incremental difference in SQ price/performance and so I returned it. Coincidentally, I had a CSI500EX for my Project Horizon amplifier and hooked it up to the ENOG2 with amazing results. Remember, YMMV. In my system it works, so most definitely it shoudl work for someone else.

Hopefully for anyone looking to find some improvement in their listening experience with the ENOG2 I would suggest trying out an LPS vs the SMPS that comes with it.

*PS. It was 13V that Geno recommended using for the ENOG2. Any more than that and he said that it would negatively affect the unit.
 

Veri

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#91
Just seems silly spending hundreds on cleaner power. It's an audiophile fallacy, always chasing the rabbit..

I'm telling you, that rabbit might not exist. Try to be happy with your current rabbit. LOL
 
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#92
I'm not super smart and educated about the particulars like a lot of you guys here at ASR, but I'm smart enough to try some reasonably well considered experiments and be confident about what I discover works for me, appreciating changes that make a perceptible improvement and makes the time and expense rewarding. Like trying the ENOG2 DAC. I very much appreciate your perspective (and others) on technical issues I can barely conceptualize. It's a learning experience within the relatively narrow confines of that which I can understand. It's also one of the reasons I enjoy battlefield threads like the current Synchro Mesh thread. I knew it would be interesting, informative, and a lot of fun if Steve stepped into ASR. Potentially better than just about any other community he could join.
 
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#93
Likewise Newk. I'm still learning and have a long way to go before I can comfortably debate on a technical aspect. But I will speak from experience and what has worked for me. Something huge is that measurably, the Khadas Tone Board measured finer than the ENOG2 in Amir's measurements. Comparatively, the KTB to my ears has a more refined and more balanced sound. But the ENOG2 sounds more wet, more juicy in my humble opinion. Had it not been for the front panel i/o config I would have kept my ENOG2. Like I said before, as soon as Geno and Sherri make a DAC with rear panel i/o's I will be on that 'place order' button like white on rice.
 
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#94
ALL people writing subjective experiences are "certain" their experience was genuine, that does NOT mean it is true. Our brains are very easily fooled.. What does this even mean??
The improvement was genuine and true to me. At the bottom line that's what counts for me. :) I appreciate the perspectives of you all who understand and apply the math but my bottom line is what I perceive is proper for me, then maybe be impressed enough to recommend a change to others.

I have a huge appreciation for math. I know math is literally everything. Then I get depressed when I watch documentaries about physics because it often quickly runs beyond my understanding. Math and I were arch enemies in school. Algebra frequently beat me down. :( I think of myself as a lesser person because I realize I'm math deficient.

I'm aware our brains are easily fooled. I take into consideration how well my senses are working at the time I'm subjectively measuring something. Some days food tastes unusually odd or bad to me and I wonder if something's affecting my sense of smell. The same sort of thing can happen to hearing. I expect that happens to every normal human being and I expect many have no idea. I know the brain compensates and I'd wager there are self proclaimed golden ears that seldom or never take changing senses and brain compensation into question unless they realize they're sick or something odd is making its presence obvious to them. There are so many variables in this hobby and I expect many people never take many of them into consideration. There are many who talk about subjectively great sound with no proper reference. I consider myself to be better than average only because I've been periodically changing components with the hope of making noticeable improvements for decades.

Man, derailed the hell out this thread, but it's still relevant because choosing the Geshelli ENOG2 was a calculated risk for improvement that worked well for me.
 
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#95
[USER=6691 said:
@Newk Yuler[/USER] I LOVE that you speak of the 'bloom' of audio! This is just what I heard when I used the LPS for the ENOG! It's like a blanket of mud or a thick screen was uncovered from the DAC and you could finally hear what was ment to be heard! Oh yes I can relate to this.
I define bloom as the effect of sitting in front of a stereo audio system and mentally measuring the difference between hearing the speakers and the image projected into the room. I challenge anyone to sit in the sweet spot of their system with a good stereo recording, close their eyes and find the speakers in their mind's eye. If one can point at the speakers there's something wrong. ;) It's nearly right when you can see individual instruments in an orchestra. Then additionally there's positioning and sharpness in the focus of individual instruments, and timbre, and a bunch of other stuff, but bloom at its base for me is what I mentioned above. I love a well produced electronic track with elements subtly positioned all over the image. (No hip hop.) RELATED TO THE OP: The ENOG2 does it well enough for me. :) (In my system!)
 
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#96
Just seems silly spending hundreds on cleaner power. It's an audiophile fallacy, always chasing the rabbit..

I'm telling you, that rabbit might not exist. Try to be happy with your current rabbit. LOL
I am happy with it. For a few minutes until the next logical curiosity is profiled on Amir's test bench. ;) When my wallet is fat enough at the moment. (Yay free enterprise!)
 
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#97
Likewise Newk. I'm still learning and have a long way to go before I can comfortably debate on a technical aspect. But I will speak from experience and what has worked for me. Something huge is that measurably, the Khadas Tone Board measured finer than the ENOG2 in Amir's measurements. Comparatively, the KTB to my ears has a more refined and more balanced sound. But the ENOG2 sounds more wet, more juicy in my humble opinion. Had it not been for the front panel i/o config I would have kept my ENOG2. Like I said before, as soon as Geno and Sherri make a DAC with rear panel i/o's I will be on that 'place order' button like white on rice.
Probably should PM you about this but I'm hungry and lazy at the moment, expecting you'll get an alert for quoting you. I'm curious about the Tone Board too but it uses the ES9038Q2M which I've already invested in a Pro-Ject DAC Box S2 Plus last year using the same chip because I hadn't tried a Sabre DAC and it looked like the right way to try one. It's the sibling to the Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 Digital that Amir reviewed early last year. In fact, that review was my first experience with ASR. I ran it on a wall wart LPS for a little while (probably crap) and found it insufficient in my system at the time. My setup has changed a bit since then and I intend to give it more time after I have a 5v Acopian Gold LPS set up for micro USB in a couple of weeks. Relative to the Geshelli ENOG2 (OP), I chose to try it largely because it uses the AK4493 which is a newer, higher spec AKM chip with a newer refined version of their "Velvet Sound" blah-blah trademarked technology.
 
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#98
Due to your post about csi lps and good results I've been wanting to mess around with one for awhile so I ordered a Dr.meter Triple Linear Variable DC Power Supply off Amazon. It's definitely not a night and day difference. I would say less if a difference than pads or tube swapping but it definitely adds to the overall picture.
The enog2 pro is already a clean sounding dac but when you add the power supply it really starts to reveal more of the singers voice, the textures of instruments, echos and nuances in the room. I don't want to use the term veiled because I feel that makes it sound as if the dac on its own has a negative effect on the sound which it doesn't. But the lps really does step it up a notch in terms of hearing every little bit of the music. The bass is substantially more weighted and full along with giving an overall smoothness to the music. I never would have Described the sound as harsh before but after hearing the lps that's the only word that really comes to mind. Do I think for 99% of people spending the money for a very small incremental improvement is worth it, no. But for some it will be. I personally see no reason to go back to stock power supplies anymore as I really enjoy the amount of detail you can hear whole also being easier to listen to. The lps also works very well with my tube-01.
The ENOG2 LOVES an LPS!

I used one of these and was blown away.
https://www.circuitspecialists.com/csi5003xe.html

Geshelli recommended I try out the iFi iPower and I did! It gave the sound a bit more clarity, just a SLIGHT bit more and I wasn't too impressed. So I bought the CSI one by recommendation from someone else and the sound just bloomed! I wonder how it would sound with a discrete R core LPS!

Can't wait for what the Geshelli's have in store for the future!
 
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