Holo new Green/Cyan DAC+Headamp

Discussion in 'Headphone Amplifiers and Combo (DAC/Amp) Units' started by VincentS, Nov 14, 2017.

  1. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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    Well this is intriguing - new faceplate sans headphone sockets for DSD only:

    [​IMG]

    That would stack beautifully with the Azure.

    I'm going to ask if they can swap out the DSD module for the PCM module.
     
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  2. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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    Confirmed - Wildism say they can swap out the DSD module for a PCM module if desired.
     
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  3. Metro

    Metro Friend

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    It seems to me that for the PCM module, it would simply cover up the headphone ports without removing the functionality. You may like that for cosmetic reasons but you'd also want to keep an original faceplate in case you want headphone output sometime in the future.
     
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  4. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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    Actually in this case no. The Cyan DSD, although it has the headphone jacks in the faceplate, does not have the actual amp guts inside it (hence the price difference). This version is the Cyan DSD without the headphone jacks (which makes sense as you could never use them). I asked if they could transplant the PCM module into this unit so you would have a Cyan PCM with no amp or jacks at all - just a pure DAC. That makes far more sense to pair with the Azure which makes the amp section in PCM_Amp version redundant anyway.

    I have to imagine Kitsune will get the new faceplate Cyan DSD at some point - it is a messy kludge leaving the jacks in there.
     
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  5. Walderstorn

    Walderstorn Friend

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    @GoodEnoughGear have you actually bought something from them? Never heard of them before.
     
  6. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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    No, I haven't - but I've seen some folks on Australian boards who have. I'm in South Africa so even if I ordered from Kitsune it would ship from China, anyway.

    I'm not sold on going this route, but I just wanted to see if it was feasible since they mod the Holo stuff including Cyan.
     
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  7. JustAnotherRando

    JustAnotherRando My other bike is a Ferrari

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    They're local to me. I've not bought from them, but they're pretty well established in the Hong Kong market.

    Edit: I haven't tried to visit them yet, by HK standards they're out in the middle of nowhere.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2018
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  8. Broberto

    Broberto Rando

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    I tested last night with my Noble K10 customs (via Linum Superbax cable) and was pleasantly surprised to not get any noticeable hiss or hum with my Cyan

    Going plugged versus unplugged with the IEMs in I can't detect any noise when plugged in

    Also nothing noticeable during the silence while playing music with quiet/silent parts

    Still dead quiet when increasing volume all the way up to 75/80 (with no music playing) (comfortable listening volume with this set up for me was in the 30s)

    And for point of reference, with these same in ears & cable I used to get a faint hum from my Sony WM1A (could audibly tell when the relay was engaged) and slight hiss/low level hum from my iPhone 6, so I know Im not deaf to it
     
  9. Ptirodaktill

    Ptirodaktill Rando

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    Is there any way to remove display flicker ? I can turn it off, but it blink every time i change volume. Annoying >_>
     
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  10. sheldaze

    sheldaze Friend

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    In the spirit of the community, I wish to focus on a few negative points, per my experience with the Cyan. Basically, I agree with everything posted thus far. And my experience with the Cyan has overall has been good. These are just a few cons, to keep an honest perspective.

    The Cyan comes with a remote. And that is how I plan to use it, as a DAC with a pre-amplifier output, to speakers. As it sits today, within arms reach for initial listening, I have no want/need to pick-up and use the remote. But the knob is just bad. It is too sensitive to slight touch, so that switching inputs I have accidentally switched other settings, such as FMODE from NOS to OS. The menu order (IN, OUT, FMODE, DISP) is logical. But once I change output from headphone to line out, I have to continue to click through the menus to get back to volume. As I have done this, I often noticed the Cyan was no longer in NOS. Hold down the knob to switch to the next menu, but this is hard to do without accidentally switching the current menu setting. And you must do this while watching a horrible blinking display. I reference the Grace Design m9xx interface, which has a similar, hold-down button to get to menu. But the Grace Design interface works. I cannot overemphasize that the blinking bothers me, as well as the knob.

    I’m still undecided on NOS vs OS. In general, I enjoy both. However on the Cyan, the sound loses all romance when set to OS. What’s that? My goal, when plugging in music, is to immerse myself into something that “could” have been real, at one point in time. Like going to the cinema, you want a story and characters and other elements of the cinematic universe to take you there. However, in OS, the Cyan takes me nowhere. A useless description - for sure. But it is my impression of the OS sound from Cyan - dry and lifeless, until it loses the illusion. OG Gungnir Multibit pulls me much closer to the music. OS is still a backup feature on the Cyan, to my ears.

    These first two points were minor. This third point is the reason I wanted to post. I do not use the headphone output. Why? When I first connected the Cyan (Windows laptop, Tidal, USB, HD650K balanced connector to Cyan) I was enthusiastic about the sound. It was a work set up, with some low volume, background, soundtrack music. Tremendous upgrade from the m9xx, in terms of dynamics, detail, stage. But later - when I switched to dedicated listening, and began to play with the different settings, to try to further immerse myself - I always wanted more. It is easier to describe this “more” by simple comparison of the two impedance settings on the Cyan. High impedance provided some good depth to the bass of the HD650K. Low impedance added some clarity to the highs. But I wanted both, at the same time. When using RCA output into BW, I can get both. When using XLR output into BHA-1 and HD800S, I can hear there is much more detail available in the Cyan, which I am not hearing via the headphone output. The headphone output, while good, while powerful, does not present what the source can do.

    When I purchased Cyan, it was a $1079 all-in-one allowing direct headphone output in a small space. It was an inexpensive entry to the world of DACs that could keep my interest all day. Today, it costs $1299, and does not compete against the better known Gungnir Multibit. Then, I had OG Gungnir Multibit, which I still preferred over the Cyan. Only my ears would tire too quickly to use Gungnir Multibit for long listening sessions. Gungnir Multibit fixes this, and has less separation between my ears and the music, and it is still available direct from Schiit for $1249. Soekris (from memory of the dac1541) has a similar level of sound clarity, and the dac1421 costs less than $1K. I will not sell Cyan, because it still does well for me as a PRE for my speakers. But in direct comparison to the competition, and used as just a DAC for the reasons I have mentioned above, I dislike its features and value.
     
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  11. Jinxy245

    Jinxy245 Vegan Puss

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    What you're saying about the OS vs. NOS seems to mirror what Torq was saying, though he wasn't as bothered by it as you.

    Interesting observations about the amp section...I've been contemplating this as an AIO solution, or to possibly replace my Gungnir D/S , but the Cyan is not likely to get a demo.

    Thanks for your impressions!
     
  12. Senorx12562

    Senorx12562 Case of the mondays

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    I immediately thought of you when I saw sheldaze' impressions. Thought you might be a little disappointed. The more you know...
     
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  13. RedLipstick

    RedLipstick Rando

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    You mean the new Gungnir Multibit fixes the problem of getting too tired quickly or am I getting it wrong? could you share what caused this tiredness.
     
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  14. sheldaze

    sheldaze Friend

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    I wish there were a simple answer, as I’m sure I’m not the only one who struggles to listen to reproduced sound. High dynamics will usually bother me, but I did not notice the BA has pretty high dynamics. I read about it on Changstar, and after doing my own comparison between BHA-1 and BA - yep, I agree. The BA simply does not bother me. I also wish it were an easy answer, such as NOS vs OS. My guess is Gungnir Multibit has had minor updates, as all Schiit gear will have. My original Black Gungnir Multibit (August 2015) did not bother me like the recent Silver Gungnir Multibit (original purchase, May 2017). Only way for me to know is to put my ears up to the thing and have a listen. First generation Yggdrasil (October 2015 or November 2016 - I did not hear a difference between these) caused some pain - loved the sound, but I could only listen for about an album. Grain or something else audible just gets to me after a while. Tubes help (e.g. BA, ZDS), but these just mask the problem. Surprised me to hear this similar “grain” on a Bifrost Multibit (March 2017) when I was part of a small HeadAmp Gilmore Lite Mk2 tour. Using BW2 for most my testing these days, it was clear to me my Silver Gungnir Multibit had a similar issue for my listening. Cyan never had the issue. Just a few reference points - not an answer. The answer is I do not know.
     
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  15. dPedro Janeiro

    dPedro Janeiro Rando

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    @Torq

    Did you already tried the Denafrips Ares?
    I need a dac to use with THX 789 and Woo wa 2, and im trying too choose between Ares, Cyan and Soekris 1541, do you recommend some of this 3 units? i don't really need the headphone amps on the last two, so the important for me is the dac section on this units.

    thanks a lot

    Pedro
     
  16. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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    Not sure how much Torq is still lurking here, but I have seen several evaluations rating Ares more poorly than DAC1541. The headamp in the DAC1541 is not a major component, but rather uses the same output stage as for the line outs. Cyan IIRC is available in Asia without the headphone outs, but I can't speak to quality vs the other two.
     
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  17. Collusion

    Collusion Friend

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    Didn't Torq even prefer the Massdrop Airist over the Denafrips Ares, or so I understood from the Airist's review:

    The Ares has slightly more weight in the bottom end than the RDAC, though perhaps not quite the Massdrop unit’s dexterity with a fast, multi-tracked bass line. Mid-range lacks the sweetness of the RDAC, which may or may not be a good thing for everyone. Transient response, particularly with plucked-strings and rapid percussion, favors the RDAC - as do both macro and micro-dynamics and raw resolution.
     
  18. dPedro Janeiro

    dPedro Janeiro Rando

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    Thank you guys for the fast reply on this.

    @GoodEnoughGear here in Portugal, the Ares cost 588€ delivered and the Soekris 1541, 1150€ + shipping i guess.
    Im not much experienced on this, so i wonder if i even can notice any diference between the 2, and the Ares costs 50% less than soekris.

    @Collusion Well Rdac can be a cheaper option too, i just presumed it was worst cause its price, but will read more about it.
    What i liked in the dacs i mention before is the option to connect them directly to my 2 amps at a time, Rca to Woo wa2, and Balanced to THX 789.

    Anyone here recommend something different? Gungnir Mb / Metrum amethyst still a good options against this ones?

    thanks a lot

    Pedro
     
  19. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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  20. WhiteZ

    WhiteZ Rando

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    Has anyone compared the Cyan to Audio-gd's R-28?
     

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