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#272322 - 2018-01-26 14:33 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: Roffie]
Registered: 2009-11-20
Posts: 73
OldDogCan Offline
Mostly harmless
OldDogCan Offline
Mostly harmless

Registered: 2009-11-20
Posts: 73
Loc: New Mexico, USA
I have to agree with Roffie. I bought the 218 for MQA in my C61R based system, but am disappointed with the sound when using it as an endpoint on my network compared to what I am used to. I am a big fan of the cheap Allo DigiOne HAT as endpoint instead, which I will simply send to the surround unit or the 218's SPDIF input for MQA unfolding until Roon comes around.


ODC

Theater: C61R, DSP5200SEs,420s,33s, NHT amp/subs, HD621, 218, DigiOne, OPPO 203, JVC RS500, Fire,Apple,DirecTVs, Mac Pro 2010+, MF V-LINK II, REGEN and iFI conditioners

Also: 598DP, 568.2mm, 565, DSP5000.2s, Roon endpoints incl Allo USBridge, Explorer², iFi nano iDSD BL, Audeze LCD-X, AudioEngine spkrs, M&K sub, Apple MBP, OPPO BDP-83
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#272328 - 2018-01-26 15:56 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: OldDogCan]
Registered: 2001-05-23
Posts: 2,718
Gianni Online content
Great Green Arkleseizure
Gianni Online content
Great Green Arkleseizure

Registered: 2001-05-23
Posts: 2,718
Loc: North London, United Kingdom
These comments are odd in the context of the early findings documented in this 218 evaluation thread.

I had committed to the 818v3 and was disappointed that such a relatively cheap device could possibly challenge it for performance. This thread suggests otherwise.


Wonderful perfect quadraphonic sound with distortion levels so low as to make a brave man weep smile
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#272332 - 2018-01-26 16:23 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: Gianni]
Registered: 2007-05-19
Posts: 987
JobSeeker Offline
Pan-dimensional being
JobSeeker Offline
Pan-dimensional being

Registered: 2007-05-19
Posts: 987
Loc: West Yorkshire, England
As far as I’m concerned the 218 is extremely good, especially given its price. An absolutely top notch network endpoint and very capable preamp. MQA is a bonus. Whether it’s general functionality and Sooloos related limitations serves individual requirements obviously will vary.


Roon (ROCK NUC with internal SSD storage)
Meridian 218, DSP3200.
Lindemann Musicbook / Lyngdorf SDA-2400, PMC Wafer 1 (shared with Marantz SR7011 7.1 system).
Testing Bluesound Node 2 and Auralic Aries Mini with above.
Explorer 2.
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#272333 - 2018-01-26 16:27 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: Gianni]
Registered: 2007-07-11
Posts: 1,052
Kswanson Offline
Pan-dimensional being
Kswanson Offline
Pan-dimensional being

Registered: 2007-07-11
Posts: 1,052
Loc: San Diego area, CA, USA
I've never run my 218 with a processor but have used it as a Roon endpoint feeding 6Ks and now a pair of very revealing analogue speakers through an integrated amp. In both cases I find the sound to be excellent with both MQA and non MQA material. With the 6Ks I couldn't tell the difference between my 818v3 and the 218 with any material I tried. The 818v3 is gone now so I can't compare the two on analogue material but I have been told by a reliable source that the 818 and 218 use the same DAC chip. Obviously there is more to a DAC than the chip but that's still pretty impressive for such an inexpensive little box. I think I would have to spend a lot of money (dCS, Berkeley, etc.) to do much better.

Ken


Main: G68J, 5K2s, 5Ks, HSU subs, Pio 151FD, Dish VP722, Roku, Wadia I70, Anti Mode Dual Core, Oppo 103D Vanity Lite
Office: SBT, Berkeley Series 2/MQA, Audience 2+2v2, Hegel, JL e110, Dual Core, 218, Roon.
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#272334 - 2018-01-26 16:29 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: Kswanson]
Registered: 2010-12-09
Posts: 3,466
Ratbert Offline
Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Ratbert Offline
Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal

Registered: 2010-12-09
Posts: 3,466
Loc: Europe
Glad I sold my 818v3 before you posted Ken whistle


Always learn from the mistakes of others. You can never live long enough to make them all yourself.
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#272335 - 2018-01-26 16:42 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: Ratbert]
Registered: 2000-11-01
Posts: 2,619
RobertW Online content
Robert.W Great Green Arkleseizure
RobertW Online content
Robert.W
Great Green Arkleseizure

Registered: 2000-11-01
Posts: 2,619
Loc: Austria, Europe
Between my 861v6+ID40 and my 218 to my 8ks ... there is no difference for to ears.


861v6+ID40/800v3/3x8k.2/3x5k5s smile /2x5kC/ 218/Explorer/TT-ELP/Trinnov Amethyst
__HB-strip, Ayon/HB/Shunyata/Dream State Audio/Miltzow -- power cables,
__Ayon/Jungson/Miltzow --analog, Miltzow-- digital,
__WMA/Finalizer- , iPad air, Macbook-pro.
Reviver
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#272337 - 2018-01-26 17:51 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: RobertW]
Registered: 2010-02-03
Posts: 750
Mtns Offline
Paranoid android
Mtns Offline
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Registered: 2010-02-03
Posts: 750
Loc: North Carolina, USA
When I got my first 218 I already had my 861v4 in place so could do a quick AB comparison through my SEs.
Like Robert I hear no difference, so I am not surprised that Ken’s 6000 experience was the same.

I then added 8Ks SEs and a 218 in my other home.


James
NC1: 861v4+ID40, 218, MS200 (to outdoors), DSP8000SE (upgraded). 5500VC, 5500s, Hsu Research ULS15x2, DirecTV, Oppo BD103, QNAP251, Roon
NC2-see FL 2 with Triad Silver Speakers

FL1: G61R, 218, DSP8000SEs, 5500HC, DSP6000s, MS600, DirecTv, Oppo BD103, QNAP469, Roon
FL2: Marantz 7005, M60s, M60C, M33s, Oppo BDP-93, MS200, Roon
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#272343 - 2018-01-27 01:08 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: Mtns]
Registered: 2009-11-20
Posts: 73
OldDogCan Offline
Mostly harmless
OldDogCan Offline
Mostly harmless

Registered: 2009-11-20
Posts: 73
Loc: New Mexico, USA
Let me clarify that my criticism of the 218 is only that it can't match the wide, "airy", effortless and detailed soundstage of Allo's DigiOne when used as a Roon endpoint.

Curiously, it doesn't seem to degrade the DigiOne qualities when I connect it by SPDIF to the 218's coax digital input, so I can still enjoy the Allo sound while using 218 for a first MQA unfold.

Any theories about why there would be a sonic difference between these devices taking the same data from Roon over the same network? Could it be the third party linear psu powering the DigiOne?


ODC

Theater: C61R, DSP5200SEs,420s,33s, NHT amp/subs, HD621, 218, DigiOne, OPPO 203, JVC RS500, Fire,Apple,DirecTVs, Mac Pro 2010+, MF V-LINK II, REGEN and iFI conditioners

Also: 598DP, 568.2mm, 565, DSP5000.2s, Roon endpoints incl Allo USBridge, Explorer², iFi nano iDSD BL, Audeze LCD-X, AudioEngine spkrs, M&K sub, Apple MBP, OPPO BDP-83
Edited by OldDogCan; 2018-01-27 01:24.
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#272350 - 2018-01-27 08:48 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: OldDogCan]
Registered: 2000-11-01
Posts: 2,619
RobertW Online content
Robert.W Great Green Arkleseizure
RobertW Online content
Robert.W
Great Green Arkleseizure

Registered: 2000-11-01
Posts: 2,619
Loc: Austria, Europe
The Allo's DigiOne reclocks the signal and that’s a reaon why it (could) sound different, of course the diffent power supply could also a reason.

The influence of the analoge PSU is smaller in digital as in analogue as a basic influence.

The reclocing generate different jitter as any reclock do...
So maybe you hear that differences as an "advantage" means airy.
Thats all possibilties.

The difference from the Roon/Tidal stream could be that Meridian is not a Roon-ready device but I have no knowledge here.

Have you tried to use the SL output from the 218 or only tried the RCA output ?

Please tell more about the hardware and wiring of your RasberryAllo's DigiOne and how it’s then fed to your audio.


861v6+ID40/800v3/3x8k.2/3x5k5s smile /2x5kC/ 218/Explorer/TT-ELP/Trinnov Amethyst
__HB-strip, Ayon/HB/Shunyata/Dream State Audio/Miltzow -- power cables,
__Ayon/Jungson/Miltzow --analog, Miltzow-- digital,
__WMA/Finalizer- , iPad air, Macbook-pro.
Reviver
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#272352 - 2018-01-27 10:01 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: RobertW]
Registered: 2004-01-04
Posts: 1,905
gIzzE Offline
Knows where his towel is
gIzzE Offline
Knows where his towel is

Registered: 2004-01-04
Posts: 1,905
Loc: Norwich, UK
I found the IQ Audio Digi+ sound better than the MS600 into 5200s, more open, bigger sound stage and yet smoother.

I am now back to analogue and using a Pi and Explorer 2, I found this pretty much the same as the MS600, the main difference was I had MQA available so kept the Explorer2.

I guess a lot of it depends on the software in the device?





I found that with the MQA files there tended to be some sort of hard edge to some frequencies.
My Harbeth speakers really do show you what the kit is doing and in all honesty I didn't really enjoy it much. I pulled my little Quad ribbon speakers out of the TV room and put them in place of the Harbeths and they smooth things out nicely.

I'm still not sure about MQA, I really didn't like most of the MQA files on Tidal through the Explorer and B&W P7s, again found it a hard edged sound, sure it might be more accurate, but I didn't find it nice.

On the old 5200s I thought it wonderful, but I am now wondering whether the tweeters were getting older and that extra bite at the top helped or whether the fact they couldn't do the second part was maybe a good thing?

Anyway, after chasing MQA and selling my DSPs to get it up and running I now wish I had just kept them and not bothered with the MQA chase at all. Ho hum, we live and learn. Haha


No Darling, I've had it months!
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#272358 - 2018-01-27 14:54 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: RobertW]
Registered: 2009-11-20
Posts: 73
OldDogCan Offline
Mostly harmless
OldDogCan Offline
Mostly harmless

Registered: 2009-11-20
Posts: 73
Loc: New Mexico, USA
Hi Robert.

The DigiOne has two SPDIF connectors, RCA and BNC, that can be used simultaneously according to Allo. One goes directly to the 218, the other to my C61R. Yes, I have listened to SpeakerLink from either 218 or C61R via Meridian AC11 using a RJ45 switch.

While the 218 MQA indicator lights up whenever Roon sends encoded files from Tidal to the DigiOne, my SE speakers only display MQA when connected to 218, not C61R. I also have the digital output of the 218 available on the surround unit. In any of these scenarios, the Allo is preferred as a Roon endpoint over the 218.


ODC

Theater: C61R, DSP5200SEs,420s,33s, NHT amp/subs, HD621, 218, DigiOne, OPPO 203, JVC RS500, Fire,Apple,DirecTVs, Mac Pro 2010+, MF V-LINK II, REGEN and iFI conditioners

Also: 598DP, 568.2mm, 565, DSP5000.2s, Roon endpoints incl Allo USBridge, Explorer², iFi nano iDSD BL, Audeze LCD-X, AudioEngine spkrs, M&K sub, Apple MBP, OPPO BDP-83
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#272359 - 2018-01-27 15:23 Re: 218 options with Non-SL processors [Re: OldDogCan]
Registered: 2000-11-01
Posts: 2,619
RobertW Online content
Robert.W Great Green Arkleseizure
RobertW Online content
Robert.W
Great Green Arkleseizure

Registered: 2000-11-01
Posts: 2,619
Loc: Austria, Europe
Thanks, interesting.


861v6+ID40/800v3/3x8k.2/3x5k5s smile /2x5kC/ 218/Explorer/TT-ELP/Trinnov Amethyst
__HB-strip, Ayon/HB/Shunyata/Dream State Audio/Miltzow -- power cables,
__Ayon/Jungson/Miltzow --analog, Miltzow-- digital,
__WMA/Finalizer- , iPad air, Macbook-pro.
Reviver
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