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Bobraz
1837
Sep 8, 2017
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I'm not an audiophile ; why is this so desirable?
Sep 8, 2017
MooTaters
360
Sep 8, 2017
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Well, Cavalli is fairly well known in the audiophile community for very high end equipment, and so is Grace design. This combo unit is based on 2 separate units massdrop was just selling incredibly recently, and they were fairly budget friendly. The hybrid tube amp aspect if I'm not mistaken is supposed to give you a cheaper tube amp-like experience, where tubes color the audio...though I've heard can sometimes hardly change the sound at all when tube rolling(changing to different tubes for different sound qualities). Tube amps also have the advantage of being easier to make to drive very power hungry headphones.
Basically it should deliver better quality audio than just straight plugging into your PC as many claim there's lots of noise in a PC, but honestly only really easily noticeable noise I've ever heard was through a front panel audio jack which never has well protected cabling. These days the built in audio on PC motherboards isn't that bad at all, many just parrot that it is thinking back to when you really needed a sound card for quality audio. Also as far as the amp, some headphones are more difficult to drive, so using a better amp can improve the audio, like it could mean tighter bass that has more impact and less flobbyness(usually called muddy) to it.
So in the end it's likely the budget friendly aspect, and the names involved. The only other competition I know of in this price range is the Schiit Magni/Modi stack(generally cheaper depending on options chosen), the ODAC/O2 amp combo(price varies depending on who you buy through), and probably some offerings from Audio-GD, a Chinese company which means any repair will require paying to ship it back to China(it's not cheap).
Sep 8, 2017
Bobraz
1837
Sep 8, 2017
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Thanks for the information! Truth to be told, I suffer from mild tinnitus, so I'm not sure it would make a huge difference, if I was to eliminate a PC's noise. My head adds enough noise to the music as it is 😢
Although, it's a damn sexy product!
Sep 8, 2017
j.a.l
648
Sep 9, 2017
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I'll offer a slightly different take. I am decidedly not an audiophile. I like my music a lot, and I like it to sound good, but having listened to a bunch of DAC/amp combos, I find the bulk of them functionally interchangeable - I personally cannot tell a difference between them. Of the ones I can distinguish, I can't say I felt any strong preference for one vs. another; they were just slightly different.
I have a Schitt Modi, with an AudioEngine amp, passive speakers and their subwoofer on my desktop machine. It sounds great to me. I'm sure it would also sound great with this combo device, and also if I dropped mid-4 figures on the DAC and amp.[1] I have headphones, but never use them and probably should sell them, but those sound great on the amp, too. Before this setup, I had an SMSL Q5, and it sounded just peachy, too[2]. I keep looking at these ads/drops, thinking I'll see something magic, but... not so much.
So my recommendation - if your ears are like mine, there's very little point in dropping a ton of money on kit like this - at some, relatively low-cost point, it will make no difference at all. Put the bulk of the money you intend to spend on the speakers that sounds good to you[3][4], find an amp that can drive them properly, and go with a cheap DAC. .Maybe spend a bit more for the next step up, if you like the way it looks better, or get a DAC/amp combo if you want fewer metal boxes in your life.
If your ears are less tin than mine, or you just like blowing money on expensive electronics, then I just wasted two minutes of your time, and you should ignore this.
[1] Great speakers would, in fact, make a huge difference. [2] Switched for reasons involving a toddler, a stick, and said toddler's father buying me off afterwards. [3] or phones, if you lean that way. [4] but also, watch yard sales/Craigslist/acquaintances who are moving - you can find great speakers for very cheap.
Sep 9, 2017
MooTaters
360
Sep 9, 2017
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Solid advice, over the years I've felt the same. Had an Audio-GD NFB 15.32 and when that died and I didn't want to spend half the price to ship it there through UPS or Fedex, and tried sending it through USPS(it came back months later, never made it there), I settled for the M&M Schiit stack. Part of that decision was even though there's only a 2 year warranty, they do offer repair services which they have claimed average around $30+shipping.
Definitely agree though, what you're listening on(headphones or speakers) for the most part is more important than all the parts in between. Source material is of course important as well up to a certain point. Many "audiophiles" get too caught up in consumerism and snake oil. When it comes down to it your budget options these days for DAC's and amps give a lot of bang for the buck and I have doubts of any $1000+ stuff doing anything more than the maybe 1% you're missing out on...at least as far as headphones go, haven't dabbled into speakers myself, don't have the desk space even for a modest setup.
Sep 9, 2017
Elsid
634
Sep 9, 2017
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Cavalli. Who wouldn't like that name.
Sep 9, 2017
Archaist
7
Sep 9, 2017
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Sep 9, 2017
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