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Whats the word in clocks and converters these days? Whats cheap?
Old 15th August 2004
  #1
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Whats the word in clocks and converters these days? Whats cheap?

Whats the word these days? Are the Lucid AD9624's old school now?
Has anything come out thats smoking the stuff from a year or two ago and DOESNT cost a LOT more tha nit should? I'd like to find a great stereo AD coverter for about $700, or a clock to make my Delta 1010 sound better.
Whats the word?
Old 16th August 2004
  #2
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Lynxtwo L22 ~650

To paraphrase one of our esteemed members Bob Ohlsson:

"The Giant Killer" when referering to many converters twice or 3 times its price.

and the Clock would help the converters on the 1010, i dunno by how much though.

or if you want an EFX unit and A/D/A you can check out the RUMOUR which I hear are comparable to the Lucids from other reviews ~550
Old 17th August 2004
  #3
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Dig. Wonder what difference the Big Ben would make in my setup with the Delta 1010, Or for that matter, something like a mini-me. How good is the clocking and converters in the mini-me, really?
I thought the Lynx L22 was an older card? Those are supposed to be good? Any reviews you know of anywhere?
Peace
Paul
Old 17th August 2004
  #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by tubedude
Dig. Wonder what difference the Big Ben would make in my setup with the Delta 1010, Or for that matter, something like a mini-me. How good is the clocking and converters in the mini-me, really?
I thought the Lynx L22 was an older card? Those are supposed to be good? Any reviews you know of anywhere?
Peace
Paul
1) Big Ben: you would be better off spending money on a new soundcard 1st i.e. ditch the 1010

2) another option: keep the 1010 and do all AD thru a Kurzweil Rumour or Mangler - and then mix thru the Kurz's DA - the sound is GREAT - works only at 44.1 or 48 (I am not a hi sample rate user)

3) the Lynx 1 is the older card - all the lynx 2 series cards sound top-notch and I think you will find no feedback that indicates otherwise
Old 22nd August 2004
  #5
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I've heard things here and there on this Kurzweil Rumour.
Can you point me to more information and reviews? How is it as far as its effects go? How do you use the AD/DA without messing with the remaining gear? what about clocking?
Old 22nd August 2004
  #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by tubedude
I've heard things here and there on this Kurzweil Rumour. Can you point me to more information and reviews? How is it as far as its effects go? How do you use the AD/DA without messing with the remaining gear? what about clocking?
Do search on this forum - also search KSP8 as the AD/DA and Verb's are
Old 22nd August 2004
  #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by tubedude
I've heard things here and there on this Kurzweil Rumour.
Can you point me to more information and reviews? How is it as far as its effects go? How do you use the AD/DA without messing with the remaining gear? what about clocking?
...sorry the previous one got away before i could finish...yes: do a search and you will find feedback and user reviews

To use AD/DA only you connect the SPDIF i/o's - set the bit depth and SR, put it in BYPASS and then work away.

available SRs are 44.1 - 48k (not a problem for me)
I have a use a Mangler (same box with different FX) the thing sounds truly GREAT
Old 2nd November 2008
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tubedude View Post
I'd like to find a great stereo AD coverter for about $700, or a clock to make my Delta 1010 sound better.
Whats the word?
If you only want A to D conversion and can use either an AES/EBU or S/PDIF input then check out the Black Lion Audio Sparrow. It's a very basic box that provides extremely good sounding A to D conversion only. As an FYI, the BNC connector on the back is not for Word Clock; it's the S/PDIF output. Black Lion provides a BNC to RCA adapter with each Sparrow. It's internal clock is very good (not the same as their Micro Clock) - so your system should perform much better if clocked off the corresponding digital input.
Old 2nd November 2008
  #9
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what's with all the 4 year old threads getting replied to as if they were written yesterday? Its confusing...
Old 2nd November 2008
  #10
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Mytek, Lavry, Benchmark, Euphonix, Weiss and the very latest Apogees are really good. I guess the Apogees are the cheapest of the front-runners.

Converters pretty much peaked out five years ago and have only been getting lots cheaper at the low-end. I think it's a real shame more studios haven't invested in first class converters. They aren't becoming obsolete but could be going away as parts become unavailable.
Old 2nd November 2008
  #11
A worthwhile point to consider: syncing a converter to an external clock source always tends to increase internal jitter in that device, as the interface's internal clock -- which is always 'in the loop' and the final arbiter of sample firing -- must continually struggle to synchronize itself with the incoming clock -- invariably tending to increase jitter. This is just the way the process works.

So, the notion of improving AD accuracy in a single, standalone AD unit by supplying an external clock source is inconsistent with basic reality.

Now, some folks say they prefer the sound that external clocking creates, and no one can argue with what the prefer. Apogee has even claimed that they have ABX testing which indicates such a preference -- but they have never (to my knowledge) come forward with the particulars of this testing or its methodology. (As you probably know, Apogee for a while was actually marketing the Big Ben with attached celeb endorsements indicating that it would "improve" the sound of a given converter.)

So, you know, do what you prefer -- but please don't think you're increasing the accuracy of your AD -- because in all likelihood, you are actually increasing its internal jitter. (Apogee does not dispute this basic fact of digital life. In fact, Apogee converters do include shaped dithering which they claim eliminates the negatives associated with such sample timing inaccuracy due to external syncing; whether or not that's actually true, it doesn't do anything to help those syncing other brand converters to an external source.)


[Obviously, if one is going to use multiple AD converters in tandem, they must be synchronized; a long-established best practice has been to use the 'lead' converter as the master, at least in simpler rigs, as this allows at least one converter to use its own internal clock as master and so avoid the increased jitter described above. That said, in larger, more complex rigs with many converters, it may well be more convenient to use a dedicated clock source that can be configured to supply timing via one-to-many connections rather than a daisy-chain.]
Old 2nd November 2008
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beebay007 View Post
what's with all the 4 year old threads getting replied to as if they were written yesterday? Its confusing...
Threads about bands are dated......
Threads about A/D conversion are TIMELESS!!
Old 2nd November 2008
  #13
Quote:
Originally Posted by beebay007
what's with all the 4 year old threads getting replied to as if they were written yesterday? Its confusing...
It's 'cause crusty old birds like me are always browbeating the young whippersnappers to search first before asking, I'm thinking.
Old 2nd November 2008
  #14
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Differences in jitter spectrum can be audible. Adding jitter creates sum and difference frequencies that could make some D to As sound better and others sound worse. I've never heard of a clock improving the best converters at all.

My question is what happens where the final product is played?
Old 2nd November 2008
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
A worthwhile point to consider: syncing a converter to an external clock source always tends to increase internal jitter in that device, as the interface's internal clock -- which is always 'in the loop' and the final arbiter of sample firing -- must continually struggle to synchronize itself with the incoming clock -- invariably tending to increase jitter. This is just the way the process works.

So, the notion of improving AD accuracy in a single, standalone AD unit by supplying an external clock source is inconsistent with basic reality.

Now, some folks say they prefer the sound that external clocking creates, and no one can argue with what the prefer. Apogee has even claimed that they have ABX testing which indicates such a preference -- but they have never (to my knowledge) come forward with the particulars of this testing or its methodology. (As you probably know, Apogee for a while was actually marketing the Big Ben with attached celeb endorsements indicating that it would "improve" the sound of a given converter.)

So, you know, do what you prefer -- but please don't think you're increasing the accuracy of your AD -- because in all likelihood, you are actually increasing its internal jitter. (Apogee does not dispute this basic fact of digital life. In fact, Apogee converters do include shaped dithering which they claim eliminates the negatives associated with such sample timing inaccuracy due to external syncing; whether or not that's actually true, it doesn't do anything to help those syncing other brand converters to an external source.)


[Obviously, if one is going to use multiple AD converters in tandem, they must be synchronized; a long-established best practice has been to use the 'lead' converter as the master, at least in simpler rigs, as this allows at least one converter to use its own internal clock as master and so avoid the increased jitter described above. That said, in larger, more complex rigs with many converters, it may well be more convenient to use a dedicated clock source that can be configured to supply timing via one-to-many connections rather than a daisy-chain.]

Interesting how we all look at clocking differently. Well, for me and my observations and tests. The Big Ben truly enhances my converters and their sound quality. They are more defined and sound more 3D for the lack of better words. I compared it clocked and not clocked. And I can definitely notice a difference. To some, it may be considered a small difference. But there is indeed a difference in the A/D stage. And for me, my hedd sounded better clocked to the BB, my mytek sounded better, my digidesign interface sounded better. My over all monitoring of my system sounds better. But whatever works for you. For me, I simply listen with my ears, not read into theory or what so and so said, just listen and make make my own judgement with my own ears, not with my eyes. I found that some people say clocking is snake oil, some say it works and swear by it as I do. Its a toss up. The best thing I did was to buy a Big Ben and try it for myself. You get a used one for $900. Its a must have for me.

For the original poster, a good cheap clock that I would recommend is a BLA microclock. Very good for the $$
Old 2nd November 2008
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beebay007 View Post
what's with all the 4 year old threads getting replied to as if they were written yesterday? Its confusing...
Wow! I didn't even look at the date, but it came up at the top of the list when I got into the "So Much Gear..." forum. It's funny because it's such a constant and relevant question still even now - 4 years later!
Old 2nd November 2008
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DONNX View Post
Interesting how we all look at clocking differently. Well, for me and my observations and tests. The Big Ben truly enhances my converters and their sound quality. They are more defined and sound more 3D for the lack of better words. I compared it clocked and not clocked. And I can definitely notice a difference. To some, it may be considered a small difference. But there is indeed a difference in the A/D stage. And for me, my hedd sounded better clocked to the BB, my mytek sounded better, my digidesign interface sounded better. My over all monitoring of my system sounds better. But whatever works for you. For me, I simply listen with my ears, not read into theory or what so and so said, just listen and make make my own judgement with my own ears, not with my eyes. I found that some people say clocking is snake oil, some say it works and swear by it as I do. Its a toss up. The best thing I did was to buy a Big Ben and try it for myself. You get a used one for $900. Its a must have for me.

For the original poster, a good cheap clock that I would recommend is a BLA microclock. Very good for the $$

yeah the clock widens everything. The difference in clarity can be huge too.
Old 2nd November 2008
  #18
Both Dan Lavry and an official white paper from Digidesign on external clocking have suggested that, if some folks prefer the sound of a given converter when it's attempting to slave to an external clock source, that it may be because they like the sound of jitter, since that's the most prominent result of slaving to external clock.

Of course, there is the ancillary issue of unconscious bias in evaluation in less than rigorous non-blind testing, which makes such testing scientifically worthless.

Even if we determine that a given subject can consistently distinguish between the internally and externally clocked performance of a given clock and he prefers the less accurate signal doesn't meant that doesn't mean he is somehow 'wrong' in preferring the less accurate signal.

But it does throw the issue into a bold relief: on the one hand we have those who would advocate for the most accurate signal possible in the transcription media -- and we have others for whom a "euphonious distortion" may trump actual accuracy.


Deciding which way to go is, ultimately, up to the individual. But I think it's fundamentally importnat when discussing the issue to recognize that a modern converter will perform most accurately when not attempting to slave to an external clock.
Old 2nd November 2008
  #19
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There are 50 zillion different kinds of jitter. More of one flavor sideband can sound better than less of another. This kind of phenomenon is nothing new. Mixing from one kind of multi-track to a particular 2 track, cutting using a certain kind of lathe and playing with a certain turntable created the very same kinds of effects in the analog world.

The problem with all of the arguments is that frequency modulation distortion is always a moving target with favorable and unfavorable combinations of gear. Trying to oversimplify this to "good and bad clocks" is a pretty big waste of time and energy in my opinion.
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