VOLUMIO soundcheck invitation for Hamburg, Germany

Dear music lovers …

this is the announcement for the next soundcheck in Hamburg, Germany.
a come together for comparing some great and current volumio setups.

it’s on september 14., 2017 at 8 PM, located at printarena.de, eventcenter.
It’ free, but for better planning please write a mail to linux @ kompage.de for coming - thank you.

We will have closer look to these Setups:

Raspberry Pi & Allo Kali Reclocker & Mamboberry LS DAC +
Raspberry Pi & Allo Kali Reclocker & Allo Piano DAC 2.1
Raspberry Pi & Allo Boss DAC
Raspberry Pi zero w & Allo mini Boss DAC
Raspberry Pi & IQaudIO Pi-DAC +

Feel free to come with your own volumio setup @Hey dondorito - would be nice…:wink:
and compare it with these ones…

Also, i’m happy to compare up to five power supplys:

the allo 5v PSU ~15€ allo.com/sparky-eu/5v-power-supply.html
the ifi 5v PSU ~50€ volumio.org/product/ifi-ipower/
the mambo 5v PSU ~150€ collybia.com/product/mambo-power-supply/
powerbank 5v PSU ~20€


this is the reminder for the upcoming soundcheck in hamburg. (Sep. 14.)

comparing five I2S Boards for RPI (allo, iqaudio, collybia) and five PSU for the RPI.
(allo 5V, allo dual, mambo, ifi ipower, RPI orginal)

See here the test setup with five identical volumio setups.
Who can hear the right PSU? - Maybe this is something for the guinness book of world records :smiley: , but we will see.

and yes, we are using 5 of these great mamboberry LS DAC Boards, all new with 100h burn in time played…
Cases with play/pause start/shutdown button.

My friends, we came together and let me say it’s always a view for a moment.

i was really happy that we had the chance to compare 5 power supply’s.

  1. original raspberry 5V 2,5A PSU (~13€)
  2. allo 5V 3A PSU (~13€)
  3. ifi iPower 5V 2,5A (~50€)
  4. allo dual psu (5V & ~19V) (~100€)
    5 collybia mambo (5V 2A-3A) (~139€)

the allo dual comes in a pretty acrylic case, similar to there other cases, just bigger and DC connector, adapter.
for me a perfect combo for the boss&volt setup. (pic follows)

the mambo comes in a stable alu case, USB connector, switch and adapter.
and thank you collybia team, for shipping us your new product and be the first to examine it ! :smiley:

So, see my setup above. 5x Rpi & Mamboberry LS DAC, 100h burned,
same http://cinch-kabel.org/dcsk-stereo-nf-audio-mk-ii-cinch-kabel/rca cable,
Marantz PM6003 amplifier, 4x ELAC FS 78 loudspeaker.

We where overwhelmed.
the distances were to small for us. i would say, for most people no difference.
but maybe most people are not audiophile :smiley: … so in conclusion:
for better equipment and/or more sensitive people it makes sense to elimate power noise.
(i will do another test in the morning when ears are more relaxed, just with 2 friends and the elac element ea101eq-g amp.)
… stay tuned

We also compared 5 I2S Boards.

Again, i have to say. All boards are really on a high level, but here, differences are much clearer than the psu comparing.
It’s like hear a taste.

we had
Raspberry Pi 3 & Allo Kali Reclocker & Mamboberry LS DAC +
Raspberry Pi 3 & Allo Kali Reclocker & Allo Piano DAC 2.1 (dual mono)
Raspberry Pi 3& Allo Boss DAC
Raspberry Pi zero w & Allo mini Boss DAC
Raspberry Pi 3 & IQaudIO Pi-DAC PRO

to my surprise, this time we voted the mambo&kali for first place(!) (‘natural&magic’) followed by the IQaudIO Pi-DAC PRO ‘brighter, well balanced’)
The allo boards where on place three.

isn’t it confusing? :slight_smile: but may not. we are human. and it’s a come together with always different people…
next soundcheck will be in december. you are invited to follow this quest.

Volumio 2.246 was used, 100% volume.
David Bowie - Cat People (Putting Out Fire 1982) FLAC {24bit-96kHz}
The Hilary Hahn Encores - In 27 Pieces CD1 - Bates: Ford’s Farm FLAC {16bit-44kHz}



How long did you burn in the Boss ?

Hi allo,
you are right, that was not in my attention this time. the piano was played at least 50h, but i choose from my both boss boards the newer one, which was only aprox. 5h played. the boss mini was played aprox. 2h.

Thank you Jens for your soundcheck and honor, to include Mamboberry LS DAC+ to your musical journey, again.

We have strong competition each time and we want to thank everyone who participate in your soundcheck’s.

Keep up your excellent musical spirit.

From Collybia Team a big salute :slight_smile:

We ask at least 50h of burn in since Boss has both film capacitors and supercapacitor.

so, coming back to the PSU test.

today i had a small soundcheck. a blind test with two PSU’s at the time.
remember last time, my listening crew was overhelmed to compare the five connected PSU.

My idea now was to take a better equipment and ask one or two of the ‘best’ listener in the past soundchecks to find out which PSU is the best.

Taking the ELAC element ea101eq-g AMP (2x analog in) with 2x ELAC FS 78-
2x Mamboberry LS DAC+ with Allo Kali Reclocker, connected with http://www.in-akustik.de/en/cables-and-accessories/home-hifi/audio-cable/premium-audio-cable-rca-00404007/ cable. Power was always connected to the Kali.
the soldered button on the DAC boards is to start music of both boards at the same time.

compared orginal raspberry 5V 2,5 A PSU with Mambo PSU we could not hear any difference.
we also compared the ifi iPower 5V with the Mambo PSU and again no difference.

In my conclusion, here seemed to be the power rails on the boards are really good enough for normal listener.
I will take my focus back to compare the I2S DAC Boards :smiley:

PS: see display :slight_smile:

Hold on tight, music lovers!

It’s time to announce the last soundcheck for this year.
And i’m proud to present a collection of the best I2S DAC boards on the market.

The five summits are:

mamboberry HD DAC+
pi2design 502DAC PRO
allo BOSS v. 1.2

also the comparison of five DAC boards for the RPI zero would be interesting.
We have five boards with RCA and headphone jack in competition:

IQaudIO DAC zero
Justboom DAC zero
Muc89.com zero DAC
DACBerry ONE zero

So, feel free to join this event on december 7. ,8pm in Hamburg,
eventcenter printarena.de
Due to seat limitation, please make a registration at linux @ kompage.de
The event is free.

more info coming soon… :smiley:

a short update for the soundcheck.

  1. TauDAC-DM101/TauOUT-TP101 is ready prepared and will be powered with the BOTW P&P ECO 9V from Sbooster.

  2. TERRATECHNOS – Terra-BerryDAC 2 is ready prepared and will be powered with the THEL NT25HQ

  3. Mamboberry HD DAC+ with Crystek clock is promised and will be powered with the mambo power supply.

  4. New BOSS (v. 1.2) from allo is promised and will be powered with the allo dual power supply.

  5. pi2design 502DAC PRO will hopefully arrive on time. The Setup will be powered with the ifi iPower.

The zero DAC boards are all ready and will be powered with the allo 5V psu each separately.

so, it is getting interesting…

for all undecided - here is another great reason to come to the soundcheck :smiley:

Oliver from muc89.com was so generous to spend us two DAC boards for raffle. (Thank you Oliver)
It’s a big chance for you to get one of these tricky ES9023 SABREberry Boards.

By the way, i was stunned to hear, that these boards are assembled in munich, germany :smiley:

Remember, the soundcheck is on 7. December (8pm-10pm) in Hamburg,Germany. just write to email to linux @ kompage.de and you are welcome to share this event.

are you interested, what we did yesterday ?

Oh, we had a surprising evening…

But let me start at the beginning.

I had eight guests (3 women, 5 men) including Sergej Sawazki the builder of the TauDAC DM101.

And we had 10 volumio devices on the table. 5 boards for the RPI zero with RCA and headphone jack and 5 ‘king class’ DAC boards for the RPI2/3.
Due to a shipping delay, boss v1.2 and 502DAC pro did not come in time so we had:

IQaudIO DAC zero, JustBoom DAC zero, SABREberry zero, pHAT DAC, DACBerry ONE zero
all played with the allo 5v psu.

TauDAC-DM101/TauOUT-TP101 powered with the BOTW P&P ECO 9V from Sbooster
TERRATECHNOS – Terra-BerryDAC 2 powered with the THEL NT25HQ (2x5V)
Mamboberry HD DAC+ with Crystek clock powered with the mambo power supply
Piano 2.1 (dual mono) /kali with the allo dual power supply
IQaudIO PI DAC PRO powered with the ifi iPower

All boards where prepared with volumio 2.323 with three looped internal tracks and autoplay plugin:
Bob Dylan - Oh Mercy - Man in the Long Black Coat (96/24) (thanks Emilios for suggestion)
Leonard Cohen - You want it darker - Traveling Light (44/16) (thanks Stefan for suggestion)
Pink Floyd - The dark side of the moon - Money (96/24) (thanks Michelangelo for suggestion)

Turning on the masterswitch, all devices starts simultaneously.
After switching ~15min between the lines we start talking about our experience.
We where talking more about feelings and emotions than in a technical language.
After sharing some hints, we came back for a short listening.
Then we decided, that we like most the JustBoom board, just next to the DACBerry ONE. IQaudIO and SABREberry on place three. The pHAT DAC had problems with the bass from Leonard Cohen.

Turning on the ‘king class’ boards - we immediately thought ‘this is a step in a higher class’ (is this a group euphoric experience). We did the same as above and spoke about that some boards make a wider listening room, with other the room is more narrow. Also with some boards we thought just to be with the musicans, with other we felt a distance to them. These feelings differed from the participants to the boards. In fact that personal preferences differs, we decided to like the piano 2.1/kali bundle most. This board was just followed by the IQaudIO and TauDAC Setups. The mamboberry HD+ was great, played also everything fine but was inconspicuous (no magic soundlover present?) The TerraBerry DAC2 did not meet our imaginations.

The last step this evening was a direct comparison of the TauDAC DM101 with the JustBoom zero.
To my amazement some prefer the JustBoom for listening. Does it turns everything upside down?

We where surprised after realize what happend here…
So, every taste is different and very personal. And what about having the best DAC board and the other equipment does not meet the same level of quality. There are breaks in the the system. At the end, there is no winner, because it always depends. My thoughts are, if you are looking for the best DAC, you have to compare a bundle of DACs in your home and see where is your heart going to. (what about a rental service for a test bundle?)
And the winner is for shure VOLUMIO, because with this beautiful tool, we could come together to share our thoughts on music, with music.

Thanks for everyone following my musical journey, thanks for your listeners in the soundchecks, and thanks
to you Michelangelo, Emilios, Sergej, Oliver, Oriol, Michael, Ioan, Gordon, Stefan, …
small addendum to our select:
we also said after a third listening, that we found piano 2.1, IQaudIO and TauDAC equal good.
And also some of us definetly said, that there favorite is the TauDAC.

Hi Judydudi.

I am very surprised that terraberry is not among the best. of the best I have only heard piano 2.1, but terraberry dac 2 for my ears is much higher (if you use your mode dsd to piano 2.1). in any case I’m glad that piano 2.1 is at the top, for my calidsd price (with kali) is the best dac you can do (with permission from Boss).


Hi judydudi
I agree with Jazz on the superiority of the TerraBerry DAC. I think you were using separate power supplies to DAC and Pi, is that correct? Did you use PCM to DSD resampling mode?

HI Jazz and jonners,
Thank you for your interest. It also surprised me.
I closed SW1 and SW2 for PCM to DSD conversation. Besides, I have used 2 separate linear power supplies. THEL NT25HQ (2x5V)
and the USB terminator, as you can see in the photo. 125h burn in time.
You know, the Mamboberry was on Amp CH1, Piano2.1 on CH2 and TerraBerry on CH3 (IQaudio CH4, TauDAC on CH5), maybe it has to do something psychologically.
If you expect something and you find it, then the thing next to it is more uninteresting. euphoric matters. ‘Ah yes’ .
Another issue is the volume. I set each DAC to 100%. and I was glad that it sound very similar. But in fact it was not 100% the same.
Maybe it’s like red and white wine lovers. this time the red wine lovers where less present.
Hope that helps to accept the confusion.

Hi friends,
so i have a little event next week.

i will compare the boss DAC with the boss DAC V1.2.
thanks a lot allo for this great opportunity.

Also i’m happy to try special loudspeakers, a Holographic Speaker-System this time.
speaker info: naturschallwandler.com/engli … index.html
The event is next thursday at 2.30PM (02/01/18)
feel free to join this event in the centre of hamburg and write me a PM.

comparing allo boss with allo boss (v.1.2)

so, you can’t go wrong with a allo boss. it’s does have a great sound and i think most people will like it.
i was curious, if the new allo Boss V. 1.2 will be different as the first release.
We found, it has the same soundprofile (clear, bright, detailed and a bit euphoric). switching back and forth from channel 1 to 2, we did not found a really difference.
Sometimes we where sure, the new one does have everything more direct, so a bit more from everything.
We where using the allo 5v psu for both boards. The new board was connected to the new 5v USB jack.
The soundsystem here is used by therapists. I have given them an allo boss for their practice and they are really happy with it :smiley:

I think that you are doing some really important things with these comparison sessions. At the end of the day, whatever it costs, whatever the name on the badge, it’s how YOU hear & enjoy your music that counts. Keep going judydudi :slight_smile:

@ Judydudi (Jens)

Please continue this extremely interesting series of soundchecks!

How about doing a comparism of the DAC/AMP combos available (HifiBerry Amp2 / iQAudIO DigiAmp+, etc…)

Would be happy to contribute with my IQAudIo DigiAmp+ …

Jens (same name and also from Hamburg)

Lieber Jens

Thank you for your interest in these soundchecks. :smiley:
right now i am working on a 16 port HQ audio switch, controlled by the volumio web interface.
I do this because i was limited to 5 input lines with my amp.
i also found out, that sometimes lines have different volume levels…
so my plan is to come back with the next soundcheck in march/april.

Comparing the amp HAT’s ? why not. i have both IQaudio AMP’s, allo VOLT amp, DACBerry AMP+ and i have had the justboom AMP.
The problem here is that i dont have a switch, remote controlled for the loudspeaker connection. Any Idea?
kind regards, jens (judydudi)

i am using a modified switch from tubeland:
tubeland.eu/index.php/bausa … usatz.html