Terra-Berry DAC2 Review

Hi.

Great! Mark, what great news. from your first message you can see that you are a great signing for this forum.

Best regards

I listened with a standard switching supply to the RPi and there was a drop in SQ. So for best sound I think you need two good supplies.

Congratultions on doing this. I look forward to seeing your instructions and hope I have enough technical knowledge to follow them!

Hi!

Based on my experience, I summarized the method in PDF.
Since I am a Linux beginner, I made some failures only by a beginner. I learned from such experiences and thought about content that is easy for beginners to understand.

I hope that this will be useful to everyone.

To get the PDF by a following link.

mark-create.cocolog-nifty.com/bl … Manual.pdf

That’s a very clear guide, and in such good English! Congratulations Mark, and thank you. :smiley:

Thanks, jonners!!

Good English? That means Google has become excellent. Hahahahaha! :smiley:

Google Translate has never worked that well for me! :confused:

By the way, if you look below you will see that I have bought the T-B2 and it has taken up residence chez jonners. :smiley:

For me it is missing two things:

  • analog control of digital volume. (some 10k potentiometer connected to V+, 3.3V, GND)
  • raw xlr outputs (skip onboard opamps). I would connect it to LL1684 lundhal transformers, which works great with ak4490/ak4497.

Congratulations, jonners!

In the past post, you said you were wondering whether to T-B2 or ESS.

The sound of ESS is very wonderful. I know well because I also have it. You can see SabreBerry32 below. It is equipped with 9018, runs as the master mode. So, I can listen to very beautiful and relaxing sounds. Whatever you choose, I’m sure you never regretted it.

Recently I am using only T-B. Both are wonderful, both of which have unexpected appeal. But I think the sound of T-B seems to suit my preference.

Today, I connected the power amplifier directly to the T-B2’s analog output and tried playing music through the AK4490’s digital attenuator. My power amplifier was too strong, I had to lower the volume by 48 dB. So I had to enter commands at the terminal many times and it was serious. It’s not quite a realistic way. But the sound is really wonderful! If michelangelo makes a volume control plug-in for T-B2 as he said in his last post, I think it’s really really wonderful!

Hi,

thank you very much Mark for the guide, it works perfectly.

I already received mine yesterday. I have a question: how much time is necessary for burning? with about 20 hours of burning I miss high frequencies. Can I expect improvements or is that the sound of the chip?

Best regards

Hi jazz,
I’m surprised that you’re getting less HF from the T-B DAC than from the others you have. I gave mine about 48hrs before listening seriously, and I’m hearing more sparkle and presence in the highs than with Kali/Piano 2.1.
What power supply/supplies are you using? PCM or DSD out?

Thank you very much jonners. I could not resist hahaha and I listened without burning.

I am listening to dsd with my diy linear source (very good) feeding dac and rapsberry separately from terraberry. We will continue to burn to see if this changes. It’s the only thing I miss now.

Keep in mind that if your terraberry is Michelangello’s it had more hours of use and it was already burned when you received it.

Regards

@jazz

So are you using two entirely separate supplies with separate grounds?

Yes

It sounds great, jazz!
Conguraturation and welcome to T-B 2’s “Velvet Sound” world!

It is after a useful answer has already been received, but let me post about the burning, too.

Compared to other audio equipment, it does not seem to be necessary to burn the T-B 2 for a long time. Because Aluminum-Polymer Capacitors used for T-B2 are surface mount parts and have characteristics that are not susceptible to deterioration due to heat of soldering. Therefore, the original performance is demonstrated in a relatively short time.
One of the reasons why burning is necessary for many audio equipment is that it takes time for the electrolytic capacitor to recover thermal degradation given by soldering. The DAC IC and the OP Amp also need burning, but the time it takes to demonstrate its original performance is much shorter than electrolytic capacitor.

In my experience, it seems that T-B 2 had almost demonstrated its original performance with burning for two or three days. I also worked on improving the sound quality of playback after that. In addition to using the USB terminator, the effective method was to prepare two methods, one is to place the sound source on the NAS, and the other is a low impedance power supply with low noise and high response performance.

Because I used a high capacity capacitor for power supply, it took time to burn for bringing out the original performance of the power supply. I think that rough standard will be 100 hours to 200 hours.

Hi

I burning my terraberry dac for more than 100 hours before doing an analysis, and I’m glad to do so or it would not have been fair. I do not understand the people (nobody in this forum) who do an analysis with the component just removed from the box and still cold.

I agree with the majority of opinions of @Jonners and @Mark_Jpn, to whom I have great appreciation, and thanks for their help. Thanks again guys.

The first impression with Terraberry is that I lacked high frequencies, the burning has given me those high and pleasant high frequencies, especially for balanced. Xlr connection has also given more silence and clarity, and of course gain, although it is possible that a little less body, precisely by adding that transparency. Because I have an unpleasant ground noise, I’m not sure if my unit is defective. By xlr connection no problem.

I agree that DSD is more complete, but any of the other two are also good, it is very interesting to have three different sound profiles: the ear is accustomed to what it hears, although it is excellent, it is good to change to perceive something different, and Above all, rediscover the best of configurations. If this is not enough, the possibility of changing the chip configuration by serial port allows changing filters and configurations. I have done tests with this and the result is that you can change the sound profile giving the system more or less sharp or bass, advancing or receding the scene, adjusting it to your personal tastes and your team. But if you are an undecided or sick of settings, better not touch anything.

In this thread https://volumio.org/forum/boss-piano-audiophonics-sabre-9028-terraberry-dac-t8033.html I do some comparative comments of this dac with others, I will not repeat them here. But it is when you compare at the same time with the rest of dacs that you realize how good this dac is, and you must do it as I have done, from “worse” to “better”, which requires having very listened to those dacs. If you do it backwards your ears have memory and can deceive you and not hear what is sounding, but your brain remembers how good you have heard before.

This dac is wonderful with headphones. It’s the first time I enjoy music with headphones, I do not use headphones because I love the scene and the depth, as well as deep and powerful bass. I have loved music for the first time with headphones with this dac, for the air that there is around instrument cads, the realistic timber and the good bass. If you have a good headset equipment you should have this dac. To have a reference to my previous best headphones equipment that I have not loved, but sold have been Sennheiser Hd800 with Sennheiser Hdv800 amplifier / dac, and the wonderful first generation sr007 Stax with an improved clone amplifier from KGSSHV. And I have sold not because they were bad, they are the best that can be bought, but because I did not enjoy the scene with headphones, now I do it with a much more modest headphone system.

It is very difficult to get what Terraberry dac 2 does, a compromise between musicality and detail, between high and low frequencies. The acclaimed Chord Hugo and TT, are very detailed dacs, but they can sound strident in some audio systems, then you compare them with a system like kali and piano 2.1, and you do not have that detail, but you have a musicality and a character analog that chord with a traditional source (a conventional computer or even a digipi) does not have. Because terraberry dac2 is the son of Chord Hugo and Allo Boss: there is a compromise and balance between detail and musicality, very difficult to achieve. I thought that the maximum exponent of that commitment was Allo Piano 2.1 mono dual (with kali) but Terraberry is much more detailed, much, and also more musical. It is also more expensive, but if your audio system and your ears know how to appreciate that difference, it’s worth that price difference.

With Volumio the Terraberry is not easy to use if your amplifier does not have a preamplifier stage, as it is my case. Controlling the hardware volume by ssh through the serial port is not pleasant.

Best regards

Thanks for your observations @jazz, very interesting. I haven’t heard the Hugo, but if the T-B compares favourably with such an expensive DAC it says a lot.
Software volume control is available for the T-B2 in Volumio so I don’t understand why you couldn’t use it. It works best if your system doesn’t have excessive gain. (It’s safer then too of course) Then the volume vontrol can be used, as you mention, without too much attenuation which would lose resolution.

you are right jonners, the problem has been that I had not selected volume control by software.

Regards

The comments by @Jazz got me interested in the TB DAC2, so I went to look at the Volumio Shop for it. I note that the additional info for the TB DAC2 shows it as 100kg, so I can see where the weighty sound comes from…

Chris M

That’s right. It must be denser than any known element. Reinforce your stand before it arrives! :open_mouth: