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About gepardcv

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  1. What Are You Building Today

    FWIW, my understanding of the Soekris DSD implementation is that it just converts to PCM, pretty much the same as a software player. I've nothing against that approach, and I like the features and performance of the dac1541 which I received about a week ago, but the extra formats don't seem to have much practical effect.
  2. No clue about OP's specific headphones, but I have definitely found that a lot of amps hiss with high-sensitivity low-impedance loads. I test with a JH13. In the inexpensive range, consider an Emotiva Big or Little Ego. Not dead silent, but close and much better than the original DragonFly (no idea about newer versions). Also an O2+ODAC, though they are often built with way too much gain, which may make problems of its own. The best performing devices, with zero hiss audible to me with sensitive IEMs, in my experience have been Apple iPhones and iPads, and the new Soekris dac1541 (though the latter doesn't quite kill all sound at minimum volume; it's not a big deal though).
  3. Stax SRM-T8000

    Right. I tend to lump BHSEs in the KG amp category, and my casual impressions from forums suggest that most end up in the US, with a handful in Europe. Add to that the other vendors who made and sold a few stat amps over the years — maybe another 50-100 units? They surface routinely at various meetups. (Excluding exotics like the HEV90.) But I saw exactly 0 non-Stax amps on a trip to Japan, even at a well-stocked retailer where I thought I'd see at least something (e-earphone, which carries nearly the entire Stax product line). Back to the T8000, I half-expected a miniaturized, mostly-SMT mostly-solid-state T2.
  4. Stax SRM-T8000

    Does Stax care, or even know much about aftermarket amps for its headphones? I gather that the bulk of its buyers live in Japan, where KG amps are vanishingly rare. I can't imagine Stax sells more than a few thousand systems a year, and the third party amp market can't be more than a fraction of that.
  5. The State of DACSES

    Metrum Acoustics?
  6. KGSSHV Carbon Build Thread

    I asked that question on another thread: I haven't done this upgrade to my Carbon yet, though will likely get around to it eventually. The amp sounds excellent to me as is, so I don't feel any rush to make changes, and about a dozen other projects have higher priority. I kinda wish I just built it with a GRLV up-front to avoid reworking it, but that's almost certainly FOMO-driven nervosa speaking.
  7. The Headcase Stax thread

    I just discovered that this exists: https://www.staxaudio.com/ Must be the new US distributor? Maybe @justin knows more? 009 pads listed for $150. No clue if shipping to Australia is possible from this seller, or how much it would cost. Prices for other products significantly lower than the defunct staxusa.com.
  8. The State of DACSES

    How's the headphone out on it?
  9. KGSSHV Carbon Build Thread

    I always bought regular "audio grade" from Toroidy. No hum from any of them on clean AC mains, though I have had hum when I plugged some other devices into the same line. Not sure if the "supreme" would have helped in this case. Keep in mind that the "supreme" ones are quite a bit larger.
  10. Schiit Yggdrasil

    I ordered the Gumby upgrade and am in the queue now. Since Gen 5 USB now comes standard on all non-entry-level Schiit DACs, not having the upgrade will destroy my unit's resale value (by more than $150, I suspect). Other than that, I, too, am exceedingly skeptical of the supposed evils of USB. Unfortunately, the details of the technical debate that I saw are way over my head. I just don't understand the nuances of digital electronics well enough to judge. @TMoney, what DAC do you use in your main (non-office?) rig these days? Or did you switch to vinyl and tape?
  11. Sorta. You will need 2 Carbon amp boards and a GRHV PSU. As Soren explained, there are several options for the GRHV: single-board, split fat (two boards), and split skinny (also two boards). The right choice for you depends on how you plan to case up the finished product. I think the split fats are the most up-to-date since most people used those, but they should all work and one of the others may make more sense for you. Laying out the PCBs inside the case is part of the challenge if you have specific dimensions in mind. Keep in mind that all boards have several devices which must be attached to large external heatsinks. Look through the various build threads to see how others have done it for ideas. The board silkscreens are well-labeled, so you don't really need the Mouser BOMs, but they'll save you time figuring out what you need. You should always cross-reference the BOM with your board and make sure you order exactly what you need. Some things aren't super-obvious (like the exact LEDs you need), and the BOM will help out here.
  12. I recently answered a similar "how to get started" question here: Definitely build a Carbon in lieu of a classic KGSSHV, unless you really don't want to deal with off-board heatsinks. I prefer my Carbon to my KGSSHV in every way. I'm sure someone has extra boards. No written full guide to a DIY electrostatic amp build exists, but all the knowledge you need is available on various threads here. I linked to the densest ones above. It's a lot of reading, and some has to do with debugging problems fixed in subsequent circuit and board revisions, but teaches a lot. Perhaps one day someone will write up something. I thought about doing it, but just don't have time now. Too many projects.
  13. Portable amp/DAC recommendation

    The Schiit Fulla 2 works okay. Build quality is meh, but the knob is one of the better ones in that price range. There's also the Audioquest Dragonfly. The original one had a horrible noise floor, but apparently newer versions work better. It's hard to beat its size and convenience.
  14. The ultimate DIY? A Stax SRM-T2!

    I've been collecting T2 parts for nearly two years. Almost done with that phase. Hope to get to the build within the next year... just need to force myself to dive into it and be mentally prepared not emerge for a solid 2-3 weeks.
  15. KGSSHV Carbon Build Thread

    @P3t4: You generally mount boards on standoffs. You will need to drill the case, and heatsinks, to do this. Alternatively, make a CAD file and have a machine shop do that for you. Front Panel Express does this well and even provides a simple CAD program for doing this. Rather expensive, though. Modushop cases come only with the screws necessary to assemble them. You can also get a case at Cam Expert who I believe can also do customizations, but no idea about prices or heatsink availability. McMaster-Carr carries a wide selection of mounting hardware (and a million other things). For wire, I buy PTFE 600V-rated spools from Bulk Wire. Good for most builds. On that subject, though, do you know how to safely work with high-voltage electricity? You must have a grasp of safety technique. If you short-circuit one of these power supplies while touching a rail, it can stop your heart. That's why I suggested you start with a Dynalo+GRLV. You'll have to solve similar construction and wiring problems, but the circuit is much safer to work with.