The secret of conversion


#1
The secret to getting a perfect copy of an analog recording is found in the converter that takes in the analog and spits out the digital. This converter is called an Analog to Digital Converter, or ADC, and is the […]

#2

There is som ething anal og about all this dig ital stuf f.



http://www.pstracks.com/pauls-posts/secret-conversion/10685/


#3

Why would you need ADC in a phono preamp? The reason you would want a ADC is for converting and archiving analog sources in digital format. You would manage the digital content (preferable in 2xDSD) in a music server and play back it a top notch (2x DSD capable) DAC. No more trips to the TT! However, if you’re spinning the record, no need for ADC conversion for real time playback.



It could be the product is an all all analog phone preamp and ADC in a single box, but this begs the question why would you do this? Isn’t it a best engineering design practice to keep the digital and analog sections separated?



Disclaimer. I have no horse in this analog race, because I don;t own LPs. Just curious about the new product, its rational, and intended use.


#4

The digital side of this thing is also good for those who enjoy the ritual of spinning vinyl and have a PWD (or similar volume controlled DAC) connected directly to their amp. Also, there are Digital Control Centers which are the digital equivalent of a preamp. The world is going digital…



J.P.


#5

Makes no sense. You’re basically digitizing the analog signal in real time every time you play the record, while mechanically wearing out the vinyl. Digitize and store the file once and for all, manage from the iPad, kick back and enjoy. Unless you really like the walking to the TT and change records ritual of course.


#6

It makes some sense if you have a digital preamp (or using the PWD as your preamp) and have an analog source, such as a high quality FM tuner and also digitizing your LP collection, but also want to play LPs in the meantime (such as when you have digitized three and or four albums and simply want a break an listen to one.)



All of this is based on needing/wanting a new Phone pre of course. Otherwise I would simply buy a good ADC. There are many wonderful ADCs out there.


#7
Makes no sense. You're basically digitizing the analog signal in real time every time you play the record, while mechanically wearing out the vinyl. Digitize and store the file once and for all, manage from the iPad, kick back and enjoy. Unless you really like the walking to the TT and change records ritual of course.


I get you.. I really do. Long ago I enjoyed listening to vinyl, but at times the ritual did get in the way of enjoyment, I don't even spin CDs anymore. I buy them (mostly used these days) and rip them. I would gladly rip a number of discs in my cinyl collection, but need a few things like a new cartridge an excellent phono stage and... an excellent ADC. I have not spun any vinyl in years now... One of these days I will get set up and rip my favorites.

Elk: What do you like in ADCs, just in case the NPC (Non Player Character?) does not do it for me?

J.P.

#8

Mytek 8 x192

Prism Orpheus

Metric Halo (a favorite for Mac owners)

Grace M201



Just for starters . . .


#9

Thanks. And most of those (all?) cost somewhat more than the upcoming NPC, right?



J.P.


#10

Here’s what makes sense, at least to me. If you have a digital based system, where the DAC with its internal volume control is feeding the power amplifier directly, and you want to play something analog like either phono, or a tuner, or a satellite output or whatever, you need an ADC - and it should be a really good one in a high end system.



The NPC, which will retail for $1995, is both an excellent ADC that does PCM and DSD, and a great phono stage. I doubt there are many standalone ADC’s for this price of this quality - with a Digital Lens built into the output etc.



So whatever you’re doing in your all digital system, the NPC completes the chain.



Elk might share with us the ADC’s he’s referring to. I really don’t know of many out there that are of the same sonic quality as the NPC - but then I don’t have a good grasp on the whole marketplace.


#11
Here's what makes sense, at least to me. If you have a digital based system, where the DAC with its internal volume control is feeding the power amplifier directly, and you want to play something analog like either phono, or a tuner, or a satellite output or whatever, you need an ADC - and it should be a really good one in a high end system.

The NPC, which will retail for $1995, is both an excellent ADC that does PCM and DSD, and a great phono stage. I doubt there are many standalone ADC's for this price of this quality - with a Digital Lens built into the output etc.

So whatever you're doing in your all digital system, the NPC completes the chain.

Elk might share with us the ADC's he's referring to. I really don't know of many out there that are of the same sonic quality as the NPC - but then I don't have a good grasp on the whole marketplace.


Paul, I have no doubt the NPC is a fine piece of hardware, worth every penny you charge for it. I am just questioning the rationale of repeatedly converting the same analog source to digital in real-time, when you could do a conversion once and gain immensely in convenience. Of course, you can make the same argument against spinning CDs, which does not stop some people from buying CD transports and continue to make the trip to the CD player to swap out discs.

Are you saying the device will output DSD? On what interface? USB, Coax, other? How about 2xDSD?

#12

MMMMMM

let’s say I buy a “super Audiophile or primo vintage” LP and I know that deep down I am potentially reducing it’s quality EVERY time that I listen to it.

I for one, would love to have the option to “archive” it at it’s best [first play". Especially if the archive is also “primo”.

I can digi-play it as often as I want and when my OLD vinyl buddies come over I’m sure they will marvel at this ability.

Now, if someone invents a volume priced and effective digital room enhancer, then I’m ready for that too.


#13

Edorr, I happen to agree with you and Gordon. I want to digitize my Vinyl albums and from then on play only the digital copy. The original vinyl album would then be stored with care and love for licensing purposes as well as backup and the opportunity to re-rip should my analog chain experience a significant upgrade or improvement in the future.



As I said before, some are fond of the ritual of spinning vinyl and this makes no sense to you and me. Put it in these terms - many if not most things that we as Audiophiles do make no sense to the vast majority of the population that is not afflicted with our audio addiction. Does it surprise you that some audiophiles do things that make no sense to others of our ilk?



J.P.


#14
wingsounds13 said: And most of those (all?) cost somewhat more than the upcoming NPC, right?

You bet. A bit pricey, but excellent.

I forget to mention Dan Lavry's products. His Gold DA924 is superb.

Another good option is the Tascam DV-RA1000HD (now replaced by the DA-3000). These are made as showpieces of Tascam's technology and the A/D and D/A are both very, very good and the handle DSD. The DA-3000 is an incredibly good buy at $1,000 street price.

Keep in mind this does not include a phono pre so it is not a direct replacement for the new PSA product.

Gordon said: I for one, would love to have the option to "archive" it at it's best [first play". Especially if the archive is also "primo".

A good use.

I can also see people recording an LP once and going back again when they upgrade their vinyl system.


#15

@edorr Certainly one can use the NPC and a computer to rip the vinyl once and then enjoy over and over without any loss on the vinyl. That makes a lot of sense, especially with some of the precious vinyl some of us own that degrades a little bit every time you play it.



I for one would probably take my top 10 vinyl discs and rip them and then store them for safe keeping - but I would not bother to rip all of them. Why? Because the time it takes to rip, catalog, separate out each track, name it, add cover art is more time than I’d be willing to spend.



I still like the idea of playing LP’s in real time - which is why I actually invented the thing. I want to be able to keep my DAC based system in place and have the luxury of playing records in real time. That’s the joy for me and , if I am not losing even the slightest bit of fidelity over an analog system, then I can relax and enjoy the vinyl whenever I want, then simply switch to a CD or a ripped whatever and listen to that as well.



Yes, the device output DSD. It can do single or double DSD. The interfaces we provide are S/PDIF DoP, I2S and USB.


#16

Paul, no doubt the hardware is up to snuff. If enough vinyl buffs envisage a similar application you should have a winner on your hands. Of course, you set yourself up for having to build a 2 x DSD capable DAC now…


#17

I think when a well thought out and high performance “category buster” comes out it is even more exciting than a “here’s our version” release.

Although we older folks may appreciate this, I think the younger vinylphiles should jump for joy at this crossover product. I bet they use both LPs and CDs as well as hard drive music and will also be wanting to preserve their “elitist” vinyl collections when toking up with their buds.

This should be on the front cover of Stereophile next September!


#18

Hi,

I believe the product is a great idea and want one. Again mostly to archive and preserve my LP collection.

Steven B-)


#19

@edorr ;:wink:


#20

Is Paul thinking “out of the box” again…tsk tsk :wink:

I’m really curious to hear what this sounds like with the PWD II after it. And even more interested to find out which sounds better: vinyl “live” or vinyl rip. It isn’t too much of a stretch to think that the new box might slay some analog devices because of the tiny amount of travel that the low level analog signal has to make. I have a friend with a Jadis phono stage and Jadis pre who also has a PWD II. That would make a great setup for a shoot out.