Birdland DAC

I would like to know if anyone is using this DAC. I keep hearing and reading about what a great piece this is. Please let me know if you have auditioned or are using this and what you think.
I'm a Birdland dealer so my comments may not be totally unbiased, but let's just say I do think it's something pretty special, especially in its price range.

I was introduced to Birdland by a customer who flew here (to New Orleans) to listen to Sound Lab speakers, and he brought along this little dinky DAC that he kept wanting me to try. Since the guy was purchasing a pair of fifteen grand speakers, I decided to humor him. We hooked up the Birdland (it was the now-discontinued Odeon Lite), and I literally didn't want him to take it home. I couldn't believe it. So I called up Gilles Gamiero and while he had all the business he could handle and didn't need any more dealers, he was kind enough to let me take on the line.

Now, there are digital front ends that surpass the Birdland, but in my experience they're quite a bit more expensive. I'm not claiming to have heard 'em all, but in my experience the Odeon AG is quite competitive with some well-respected units in the 2.5 to 4 grand price range.

Fuuny you should ask, I have the Birdland DAC with the Volume control in my system for an audition right now. I have also had teh Wavelength, Electrocompaniet, Audio Logic 2400 and Chord 64 DACs. The higher priced DACs are better than the Birdland but they are 2 to 3 times the price and they are not twice as good. I am using it with a very old Sony 10 disc CDP since my other Sony SACD player is loaned out to a friend. It sounds really good with this el cheapo Sony. It does pretty well going direct as you would ahve to have a Pass X-1, Joule LA-150 or Lamm LL2 to improve upon it with a preamp (yes I had them here also). Buy with confidence, in fact, buy this one, it is on loan from a dealer.

Email me directly if you want more input.

Happy Listening.
Thanks for the answers! I finally some info I was looking! I had initiated a thread re. this DAC last year but really got nothing substantive.

I'm going to email you directly for a comparison amongst these DACs.
Very nice DAC right out of the box, but really stellar once modded (Odeon-lite).
I've had my Odeon-Ag for about 2 months now. I think it's the finest audio purchase I've ever made. I'm not exaggerating. If you have a substantial investment in CD's, this is investment protection at the highest level. I've not had a chance to audition some of the other well known DACs, like Bel Canto and MF TriVista, so I cannot offer comparisons, unfortunately.
I will say this. Right now, I'm enjoying my RBCDs with the DAC more than my SACDs. Before the Odeon-Ag, SACD and RB weren't in the same league.

Best Regards,

Wow. So far very impressive. Tom, what types of music do you listen to?
Hello. I listen to a lot of different music, but mostly I would say I listen to Rock and Classical. In Rock, well, I guess you could say I listen to the big ones (Dylan, Who, Elvis Costello, Clash, Bowie, Beatles, Doors, etc.). In classical, I favor mostly Orchestral and Chamber music. I don't do a lot of Opera. I found the Birdland really shines with solo piano. I've been listening to Beethoven's Complete Piano Sonatas by Daniel Barenboim on EMI 5-72912-2, and it's SO easy to follow each melodic line now! It's really something special. Some Rock CDs that I thought I knew inside and out, have a whole CD "underneath it" that I didn't know was there. Some Rock CDs that really had me doing a double take:

The Who - Face Dances (The Remastered edition w/extra tracks.
Peggy Suicide - Julian Cope
Imperial Bedroom - Elvis Costello
Earth & Sun & Moon - Midnight Oil

And I'm just getting started re-listening to my collection. I'm sure there will be many more.

Also, my system is NOT serious high-end stuff. If you already own a very good Red Book CD player, the improvement you experience may not be as drastic as was mine.
I currently run 2 Sony CDP-CX400 400 CD carousels into the Birdland Odeon-Ag via Toslink cables. I connect the Birdland Directly into a Rotel RMB-1095 (I'm using this 5 channel AMP as 2 stereo Amps for 2 different rooms since I grew bored with Multi-Channel Audio). The speakers are Sonus Fabers Grand Piano upstairs and Paradigm Studio 60's downstairs.

Tom, I want to thank you for the time you took to give such a detailed response with excellent information. It is very much appreciated. I have a Meridain 588 CD player but I want to use the DAC for my CAL CL-10 multi disk player. I find that I use this much more because of the versatility. I have B&W N802 speakers and a Bryston 4B-ST amp and BP-25 preamp. I use Audio Magic power conditioners (very nice tweek I might add). It is nice stuff but not out of this world. It is a little too analytical at times but I really like detail in my music. Sounds like our systems are comprable, I love those speakers of yours. After this feedback, I am sure I will buy and then I will let you know what I think.
Fyi, my Odeon-Ag has the re-clocker.