This is as good a place as any for this post:
I have a Chord DAVE with M Scaler, which I love - really gorgeous, deep and clean. Very musical. The best I’ve experienced, even in mastering studios and mix stages. I have on order, arriving in week or so, a shiny new Holo Audio May, KTE (lev. 3) edition. I am very excited about this box (es) and looking forward to a lot of listening. I will play many hours to break it in, and will of course be doing a deep and long course of comparisons between the two DACs once the May has broken in a bit. I think this will be fun and educational, and my intention at the end of some period of major listening is to sell the box that I can live without, and keep the other.
I love the differing approach to d/a that each of these boxes takes (very exciting time to be a DAC!) and respect the engineering behind both–much admiration for both companies (Well, Watts and Zhu). Basically, enough talk/reading/musing… now it’s down to the ears. And that will be that.
I have my work cut out for me: I will test PCM, which is what I normally listen to across many areas in my life, including work and travel, but I also want to test DSD through these, with which I am much less familiar. The DAVE will do DSD256 and the May will do 1024; DAVE will do PCM768kHz, May will do 1.5MHz (doh…); my Lumin streamer will be the bottleneck as it caps out at DSD256 and PCM384kHz, so those are the encoding rates I will test.
I do not run HQP and don’t intend to at this point, but open to it in the future. I will use MScaler to up-rez PCM going into the DAVE, and May’s internal OS circuit for that box, and then also A/B non-OS for both – but for DSD… MScaler converts to PCM, so will likely pull that from the chain and do DSD source (Lumin) direct to DAVE and May with no OS on the May, and both boxes in DSD native mode. And may do other combos as well (I’m actually not this anal… so I doubt I’ll do some uber-thorough test of all apples and oranges, but I’ll do enough to learn things and make some decisions ).
[TL;DR] I do not regularly listen to DSD and my question is: what albums would you all recommend I listen to? Planning to download DSD11.2 (and lower obv.) from Prostudiomasters; I listen to most genres, including classical and jazz, so open to anything you want to recommend. Also, any particular label/mastering studio you would suggest?