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David,

I just wanted to drop you an email and thank you again for the superb service.  The Stello gear was all you said and more!  I couldn't be happier.  Again, I appreciate your patience in working with me on this purchase.  Don't think I've had a smoother, more professional experience with any gear purchase before or since.  Take care and keep up the superior work!  We need more like you in this hobby!!

Ken

david,

thanks so much for installing our new system. it works great. everything you 

recommended is exactly what we wanted. we especially love the speakers in 

the ceiling. the room is so much less cluttered and the sound is great. we 

also appreciate the time you took to demonstrate and explain how everything 

works, especially in words we could actually understand!! thanks for being 

able to come so quickly as we were on a time budget and needed to get the 

new system installed first.

again, thanks for everything. i'm sure we'll see you again.

paul and sue

Hi David,

Firstly, thank you for your excellent service in supplying me the Stello DAC recently. It arrived in a matter of days from Korea (via The Phillipines!!) and in perfect condition. It was very easy to set up, after I replaced the power plug with an Australian 3-pin. I did not connect the earth pin, similarly with the MSB Link DAC as I did not want to create any earth loops. I am assuming the unit is double insulated or earthed via the rca connections ?

The first impression was a significant increase in separation between instruments & voices. The next revelation was the size of the soundstage (width, depth & height). I had always thought my Sonus Faber were great unit (apartment) speakers with a tightly controlled, but limited bass extension - not any more. The bass is incredible !! Not only deeper, but better controlled with great delineation between bass notes. I believe this better control in bass is also allowing more upper bass/lower midrange information through. I have set the unit on the 192kHz upsampling rate. I have not bothered to compare at this stage - might in the future. The treble is also a significant improvement just as was the bass & midrange.

I bought this DAC to replace my MSB Link DAC 111 for improved reproduction of my CDs and, to a lesser extent, my digital radio. By the way, the digital radio improved immensely (especially in the bass and separation) to the point that my audiophile friends sit and "audition" radio reproduction (who would have thought it possible).

I never appreciated the usefulness of the comprehensive connectivity options with the Stello DA220.

I have a reasonably good DVD player in a Toshiba SD9000 - brilliant picture, but so-so sound. I set the DVD on PCM output*  and the improvement in the sound was greater than with CDs.  Not totally surprising as the MSB is not a bad DAC - but obviously, the Stello is streets ahead of the onboard DAC in the Toshiba DVD player.  The Stello DAC would be worth buying just for the improvement in the sound of your DVD collection, especially music DVDs. Of course, I am only use the Toshiba/Stello for stereo replay - it's good but it wont do Dolby Digital as well. Who needs 6 channels anyway, with stereo this good. I wouldn't be surprised if I use the Stello for audio reproduction when I finally invest in a Blue-ray (or HD DVD) player in the future.

My last/2nd last ? "digital connection" will be to the digital TV set top box, when my 5 metres of Apogee Wyde-Eye toslink cable arrives from the USA next week. I might eventually try the latest idea of using a computer hard drive as transport and connect via the USB input provided on the Stello.

I could be back to buy the Stello transport as soon as the trusty Toshiba DVD finally wears out or when I upgrade to a Blue-ray player.

Best regards,
Gary Schulz

Hi Dave

Got home and hooked up the new DAC.  Easy and straight forward.  The Mac Mini saw the DAC on the USB bus and I was in business.

It is a very sweet and full sound.  Even at this early stage, I can there is quite a bit of character difference from the Musical Fidelity Tri-Vista 21 I had there before.  With Ian Anderson playing his flute, its not as sharp and fatiguing.  Smooth and lush.  I used to play the flute while in school so I like to use that as a starting point as something I'm familiar with.

It'll be playing all weekend, that is for sure.  Except when baseball is on - my wife is a sports nut.  That is where the Graham Slee headphone amp comes in. :)

By going to a solid state DAC with USB connection, it simplifies things greatly.  For my wife, since its just a couple things to turn on to get music playing.  And she doesn't have to listen to me scold her about turning tubes on/off in quick succession.

For me, the path right into the DAC buffer & PLL through USB is exactly what I was looking for (looked at I2S interfaces, other USB DAC's, but nothing seemed to work 'right').  With the USB interface, jitter, along with any potential drop outs are removed.  Packets work much better than streams - I'm in the networking industry and packets make things so much easier.

My system is Mac Mini (intel) -->  USB DA220mk2 --> balanced PS Audio GCC-100 --> Focal Utopia Micro Be

The Mac is connected to a 500GB drive where all of my music resides, encoded with Apple Lossless (basically the same algorithm as MLP or FLAC).  This makes sure that the original bit stream from the CD reaches the DAC.  

Thank you again for your patience and persistence to make sure this wonderful DAC would reach my door.

-Mike M.

From: Rejean Falardeau <mailto:ra.falardeau@videotron.ca>  

To: Ki Choi <mailto:kichoi@aprilmusic.com>  

Sent: Thursday, February 14, 2008 9:48 AM

Subject: Re: DAC da220MKII

 

Hello

 

Received unit yesterday 13 feb

Working correctly

 

Impressed by quality of sound precise yet extremely musical, exactly what I was looking for.

 

Thank for the excellent service provided, it is the first time I experience such an after sale support.

 

Please advise HIREZ of resolution of the problem.

 

Thank you to all your team

 

Rejean Falardeau

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