A TRL modded McCormack? I've never heard of one, though they did a great thing for my CDP, as well. I have the Platinum mods on my DNA-225 and it is one of the best amps I've ever heard. While TRL is good, I doubt they'll improve on Steve's mods.
Contact David at The Upgrade Company!
Do you know how these mods may differ from SMc's?
SMc is the way to go with DNA mods. Who else but the designer knowing best?
You might oontact Steve M directly and ask him if he knows the difference between what trl does and what he does.
I'll admit I really like my SMC modded amp and haven't heard any TRL mods, so an opinion would not be based on data.
I doubt Steve would be able to address TRL mods, as they are proprietary and undisclosed. I do know that TRL has modified a lot of gear, including amps. I'm not sure they have done a DNA, but I know another Audiogon member (lkdog) who had his Musical Fidelity integrated amp modified by TRL with excellent results.
As an aside, unless you're married to the DNA, why not try the TRL D-225 amp out. I have one and it is an excellent component.
Not married to the DNA, but I do like it. And from what I've heard, with the relatively inexpensive mods, it becomes very good.
What's retail on the TRL D-225?
just curious why would you mod your dna amp at TRL? Is it the price? My friend has SMc modified DNA-125 and it is an excellent amp to say the least. Huge improvement over the stock 125, which is already a good amp. I wouldn't mod the McCormack amp anywhere else but SMc. As far as I know TRL does all mods for $550 or so. Although I heard good things about TRL modded components, I doubt their mods extend to the level of Steve's mods. Most likely that Steve's mods run at least $550 just in parts. So what you pay is what you get. Just my opinion.
Retail on the D-225 is $4000.
$4000 is quite a price jump, even compared to a Rev A mod.
I agree the SMc seems like the logical choice and in the end will probably be where I go. The reasons I was considering TRL are
1) They modded my CD player and the difference was FAR beyond my expexctations.
2) Paul makes some VERY good amps and after discussing it with him, he told me they could make a huge difference to my DNA. If it was anyone else I'd take it with a grain of salt, but I know what he did to my CD player and I've seen the reviews on his amps.
I realize it's quite a jump in price. However, if TRL can build a solid state amp that sounds as good as it does, then imagine what they could do to your DNA for a fraction of the cost. Of course your last post sums it all up. Paul will make it sing.
I just exchanged emails with Lkdog. He seems to second your view. His final line summed it up, "it's a no brainer".
I need to send my Sony 900 back to him for some upgrades. He said mine was one of the first ones they did and they've learned a couple new tricks since then. Maybe I'll send the McCormack at the same time. Although I won't be sending either for another month or so, I'll send them when we're on vacation, that way I won't be without them so long.
My player will have the most up-to-date mods for the Sony 900, including the latest battery supply design. I will post something in the digital forum after it breaks in so you have an idea of what improvements you can expect. Even if you don't get the battery supply, the latest mods are significant in the amount of labor it took to design and implement.
I'm glad you spoke to Lkdog. He is really happy with his TRL modded amp. For the standard mod fee you really can't go wrong, after all it is guaranteed and if you don't like it you can get your money back and send it to SMc. The odds are greatly in favor of you liking what they do to it. Too bad you can't hear the D-225 just for the fun of it.
The D-225 may be down the road. Right now anything I do will be on the inexpensive side.
FYI, Paul said he'd bring my cd player up to the current mod for free. Of course I'd have to pay if I want the battery upgrade.
I still don't understand why you wouldn't simply find out exactly what the mods TRL would do are, so you can compare them to the mods SMc describes on their website. I recently bought a DNA-500 to compare with my DNA-125 as a way of trying to suss out where the SMc mods might lead me before going that route, which would probably be the Platinum mono's.
Not sure of the reasons, but Paul at TRL does not disclose exactly what they do, for any of their mods. He does tell you what improvements you can expect to hear and if you don't like what you hear he'll refund your money.