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Mutec MC-3+ USB
@JimSmith In general the Allo DigiOne can be considered "the poor man's MC-3" as it does re-clocking. It may not be quite as good as the Mutec and it only has SPDIF on BNC and RCA, but the price is just USD 169 including a Pi3. With full RAAT support this is a rather fabulous price. I know member @Hifi_swlon is using one with his 250 Pro.
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microRendu 1.4::LPS-1::USPCB::Mutec MC-3+USB::250 Pro (still Angry in France for CI)::Roon life, Core on Intel NUC with Debian Linux, music on USB3 disk::Audiolense 5.1::Monitor Audio MA201 (thoroughly rebuilt, now with a SAM profile)


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From what little I have read about the Allo DigiOne it sounds promising, thanks for the tip. @ogs I am currently comparing the SOtM SMS-200 with an Sbooster power supply to the direct USB connection from Melco N1A. However the more I listen the more I feel that I am really listening to the Core Infinity board than to the SOtM or Melco. Now I am not saying that the source is not important, but the CI board is doing something to the USB input to make them sound equally wonderful. I think it’s the onboard word clock that is doing the Magic. However currently in my humble opinion the best sounding input is Ethernet from the Melco N1A using the Audioquest Diamond cable. This finding will be tested and challenged as I have an SOtM SMS-200 Ultra on its way, so I will be able to put my theory to the test. But bringing this back to the Mutec MC-3+ USB what I am really interested in is how the AES/EBU input sound as compared to the CI board inputs. It has been widely reported that AES/EBU is the preferred input when it comes to Devialet. However I am aware that the software for Core Infinity is not ready so we might see further sonic improvements as we reach a stable firmware. I have a suspicion that Devialet is really focusing on Ethernet mainly because of Roon, and it might just become the best input on Devialet as things proceed.
Core Infinity D440 Pro (2 x D220 Pro), Sonus Faber Olympica I.
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(15-Jan-2018, 09:22)SwissBear Wrote:  the Ref-10, will bring time coherence, ie a much better sound stage, a much better separation between the tones, as well as an much improved macro dynamic (realism of restitution), and micro-dynamic (vector of emotions/realism).

I totally agree with every word. 

I also use the MC3+USB and the Ref 10 to reclock my Oppo-UDP-203 for movies. As a non-native speaker of English, I found it much easier to follow what is being said as everything is just so detailed and the movie score, sound effects and dialogues are so separated. I would never have thought that a clock can bring that much into a system.
Win10/HQPlayer/Roon - SOtM modified D-link switch  - SOtM-SMS-200ultra with clock input - Mutec MC-3 USB, Mutec REF 10 
Devialet D800 - YG Acoustics Carmel - Dual Elac SUB-2090
power supplies: Uptone JS-2, SOtM SPS-500
cables: Acrolink, Acoustic Revive, Curious USB, 
Vovox . 'tweeks': Shakti Stones and Halograph, Acoustic Revive RR-777, Zcable Sleeves, fo.Q vibration control, EMI absorbing sheets, Sonitus Acoustic Panels. 
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@JimSmith I agree ethernet may become the best input on a Devialet amplifier, but up to now there is no information of a re-clocker on the CI. In my opinion a re-clocker is necessary to get the best sound. Someone might design an ethernet re-clocker. I think this is not so easy though as ethernet is not an audio stream, but packet data. With this as background AES/EBU or SPDIF may still give better sound.
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microRendu 1.4::LPS-1::USPCB::Mutec MC-3+USB::250 Pro (still Angry in France for CI)::Roon life, Core on Intel NUC with Debian Linux, music on USB3 disk::Audiolense 5.1::Monitor Audio MA201 (thoroughly rebuilt, now with a SAM profile)


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(15-Jan-2018, 22:39)ogs Wrote: ...
Someone might design an ethernet re-clocker. I think this is not so easy though as ethernet is not an audio stream, but packet data.
...

The same is true of USB, incidentally.

ETA: My point being that when you use it with USB input, the MC-3+USB is doing a fundamental format conversion rather than re-clocking.  The AES output is by no means just a "cleaned-up" version of the USB input.
Roon (Mac Mini), Wilson Benesch Full Circle, Sonos ZP90 (Cullen modified), Devialet 440 Pro, Kaiser Chiara
Warwickshire, UK
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(15-Jan-2018, 09:22)OSwissBear Wrote: Another point of view here: being the starter of this thread, I am the happy owner of a Mutec MC-3+ USB + Ref-10 on both my systems and I have to say that I enjoy these devices very much. But I would also like to point out that not everybody is sensitive to the improvements brought by these devices to the systems. It very much depends, like in every field which is in connection with our senses, to our personal expectations.

I noticed that very skilled musicians who visited me were much more sensitive to the transparency/tonal correctness of my system than they were to the time coherence of the signal. The Mutec MC-3+USB and its further improvement the Ref-10, will bring time coherence, ie a much better sound stage, a much better separation between the tones, as well as an much improved macro dynamic (realism of restitution), and micro-dynamic (vector of emotions/realism).

You can be very skilled/interested in music, but not have developed the skills which would allow you to benefit from these devices.

So at the end of the day, your appreciation of these devices will very much depend on your utility function: ie what you are looking for when listening to music.

A last word on the implementation of the MC-3+ USB. The best way to implement this device is, IMHO, to follow into the steps of @Antoine on this forum who has developed a very wise way of doing this: a very good LPSU, a network reader, a modification to the MC-3+ USB in order to power it through the LPSU, aso... At this price, you will get incredible results Wink

As a fellow mutec/reference 10 user I think you encapsulate the advantages that the Reference 10 brings to the equation perfectly. I always thought my soft domed dynaudio’s just didn’t have the speed to render the detail of the hall and the space between instruments etc. .  like some hard domed tweeters (i.e. magico) . . .until I added the reference 10 - will be very interested to see what the CI board adds to the overall sound

Cheers
Roon on mac mini > hqplayer > sms-200 ultra and MC-3+ USB clocked via Mutec Reference 10 > MIT Oracle MA-X AES/EBU > D440 > Dynaudio C1 MkII via MIT Matrix HD-60
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@thumb5 the re-clocking is active from USB to any of the outputs. It's also re-clocking if you use an SPDIF input and USB as output for recording to PC for example.
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microRendu 1.4::LPS-1::USPCB::Mutec MC-3+USB::250 Pro (still Angry in France for CI)::Roon life, Core on Intel NUC with Debian Linux, music on USB3 disk::Audiolense 5.1::Monitor Audio MA201 (thoroughly rebuilt, now with a SAM profile)


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@ogs: in both the cases you mentioned, describing it as "re-clocking" is not very clear because the input and output formats are so different and in particular don't operate at the same clock rate.  Yes, it will be generating output based on an accurate clock, which I think is what you mean to say, but it's doing far more besides.

For example if it's taking USB input and producing AES output, it has to understand the USB audio protocol to extract the audio data from the incoming USB packets in the same way as a USB DAC.  In principle and in practice the USB input might include data and control messages for completely unrelated, non-audio devices as well as the audio data.  Rather than converting those audio samples to analog as a DAC would do, the MC-3 is synthesising a completely new data stream on the AES output (and other outputs), based on its internal high-precision clock.

Another way to look at this is that if you're sending (for example) a 44.1 kHz audio stream via USB, there is nothing on the USB wire that obviously looks like a 44.1 kHz signal or any direct multiple thereof.  The only way the DAC (or Mutec) knows that there's a 44.1 kHz audio stream embedded in the USB packets is by virtue of it implementing a USB audio endpoint that understands what the USB host (source) tells it.  IIRC this the host does this by sending control requests, defined by the USB audio class protocol, to set the audio sample format, sample rate, etc.

This is why the MC-3+USB "looks like" a USB audio device to the host (source) and might require installation of USB audio drivers on Windows at least.  On the other hand (I believe) something like an iFi USB Purifier does just literally re-clock the USB bitstream, without knowing anything about the USB audio protocol, and therefore doesn't require driver software.

Sorry if I'm repeating stuff you already know, but it seems that to describe what the Mutec is doing in this set-up as "re-clocking" is doing it somewhat of a disservice as well as being potentially confusing.  I do know that this is how Mutec describe it as well, of course Smile
Roon (Mac Mini), Wilson Benesch Full Circle, Sonos ZP90 (Cullen modified), Devialet 440 Pro, Kaiser Chiara
Warwickshire, UK
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@thumb5 the way I understand this is that the USB in the Mutec (using a XMOS chipset) is internally converted to a signal (I guess SPDIF) that is re-clocked before it is sent to the outputs. If the signal is sent back to a PC via USB the PC is again clock master and the rate is adjusted. The re-clocking can be disabled and the MC-3 is then a pure format converter. The digital stream is obviously clocked in this mode too, but the re-clocking is an additional function in the MC-3.
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microRendu 1.4::LPS-1::USPCB::Mutec MC-3+USB::250 Pro (still Angry in France for CI)::Roon life, Core on Intel NUC with Debian Linux, music on USB3 disk::Audiolense 5.1::Monitor Audio MA201 (thoroughly rebuilt, now with a SAM profile)


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