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I have an Elyse in my 2nd system and use the RCA SPDIF input. I’ve encountered on occasion the dropout issue you describe, luckily infrequently. On the plus side I really enjoy its sound especially with NOS tubes/rectifier; on the down side I wouldn’t be comfortable with selling it to someone else or trading it in given the potential for the dropout to occur so it’s fully sunk cost for me. I am familiar with Dan’s response to the dropout and frankly, it doesn’t give any appreciation for that downside/remedy to his purchasers of the Elyse. I also have his LS100 preamp and KWA100SE power amp, musical and trouble free.
Facten, thanks for the response. I’m glad you wouldn’t sell it to the unsuspecting buyer. It drops out 3-10 times per disc, occasionally I’ll get a disc played without dropouts. I just bought a Jays Audio transport when I got the Elyse, thinking I would be in PCM heaven. When it’s not dropping out I am! I also have a LS100 (with phono) and a KWA150 without issues. Great sounding gear. I was thinking of upgrading to a 150SE. Did you have a non SE prior to your SE? Curious about your opinion if you did. Thanks
If I get a dropout it is usually once a listening session for a few seconds, thankfully nowhere near your unfortunate experience.
I did not have the "standard" KWA100 power amp so I can’t provide any impressions of that versus my SE model. If you haven’t you might check over on the Modwright circle on audiocircle for potential insights
Given the extreme frequency of the dropouts you are experiencing have you tried a different digital cable to see if any difference occurs. I have no idea if the cable might be contributing, just wondering if the one you are using might have some issue itself that is exasperating the DAC's inherent bug
I have had my Elyse for many years now. The only problems I’ve had are with the USB drivers. The internal USB converter is not recognized by Windows, not even Windows 10. I believe the USB converter itself uses drivers based on NuForce and/or Optoma. I know I wrote down the model number on the NU chip on the board and was able to find old drivers on the Optoma website. I think Dan shipped the units with a CD with the drivers on it but I don’t have it? This allows it to work well with Windows but because it take unique drivers I never was able to get USB to work with non-windows based products (like streamers and servers and such). What has worked really well for me is using a XMOS u-208 external converter with SPDIF to the Elyse. All products I have tried recognize the XMOS converter and it works perfect with the Elyse. I have other quality DACs that I use often but the Elyse is special. I’ve enjoyed every product Dan has made with his tube outputs and tube power supplies. That is what makes this DAC special IMHO.
What would really be cool is if someone in the know figured out how to install a SOTA DAC into this chassis? Something that was current and processed DSD etc. It would have to pick up the 8v coming from the Elyse PS, interface correctly with the front signal sensor indicators and also interface with the output PCB. It can’t be that hard for someone in the know? There is plenty of room for a modest size PCB. The SPDIF and AES connections are point to point wired so that would be forgiving to the chassis layout. The USB port is on the PCB itself so location may complicate the PCB placement but nothing a separate USB port could not be added to accommodate? Everything in this chassis is of exceptional quality except the DAC itself is quite modest. A nice ESS9038pro would be killer installed with this PS and outputs? Someone?
Update. Not sure what happened, but the freguency of drop outs has reduced significantly. My initial impressions were based on the first two weeks of ownership. Two months later (maybe 120hrs of use) the dropout rate is probably once every 90 minutes of use if I tried to average it. Same set up. same power supply. I just wanted to update in case someone was looking into the Elyse. Best sounding DAC I have had to my ears.
I have had mine for almost a year now and when I first bought it it had an occasional drop out while playing cd's. I mean it was once or twice in a 4 hour listening session. Now I haven't had 1 drop out in 3 months. I went from a 5ARGYS rectifier to a 5UGB and since then no drop outs plus in my system it tamed the highs. I use the Co Axial input(WyWyre Diamond Co Axial). I use mine strictly for cd's,not with a streamer.
I spin CDs and back in August I purchased a Neodio Origine S2 CD player with it becoming my main source in my main system. With that change I sold off my Mojo Audio EVO DAC (thoroughly enjoyed it) and moved my SimAudio 260DT transport into my 2nd system with the Modwright Elyse. The SimAudio’s AES/EBU output is the unit’s optimized one for SQ (confirmed with SimAudio) . Using that connection and a Tchernnov Reference 2 AES/EBU digital cable to the Elyse I noticed that if I encountered a dropout it was split second in length vs a maybe 3 second dropout when I was using the SPDIF connection via a Wadia 171i IPOD transport. I have made one other change, I swapped out a NOS Phillips 5AR4 rectifier and installed a Sophia Electric Aqua 274B. So far no dropouts, and equally important it has taken the Elyse SQ to another level. More body is how I will simply state it. I had never consider using the 274B until I read positive comments about it on Lampizator DAC threads on What’s Best Forum . Figured nothing to lose giving it a go in the Elyse since Dan listed it was a rectifier you can use with the Elyse.