Holo May DAC review on YouTube

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Spaceboy, Jun 11, 2021.

  1. Spaceboy

    Spaceboy Senior Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Near Edinburgh, UK
    Just posted today. This guy is my favourite audio YouTuber at the moment.



    ***Can a mod fix the title - should say "Holo May..."
     
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  2. Synthfreek

    Synthfreek I’m a ray of sunshine & bastion of positivity

    You have 30 minutes to fix the title yourself...just go to Thread Tools.
     
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  3. OC Zed

    OC Zed Bludgeon Riffola

    Location:
    Costa Mesa, CA
    There has been significant buzz building around the Holo May DAC in the past year. Lots of other great YouTube reviews on this unit as well.
     
  4. Shangri-La

    Shangri-La Forum Resident

    Location:
    CA
    Stereophile Class A+ too. Every reviewer seems to rave about it.
     
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  5. Spaceboy

    Spaceboy Senior Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Near Edinburgh, UK
    Wish I could afford one!
     
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  6. tIANcI

    tIANcI Wondering when the hifi madness will end

    Location:
    Malaysia
    I’d like to see a comparison between say the May DAC and Chord Hugo TT2. Just curious to know what the difference might be.
     
  7. Benzion

    Benzion "Cogito, ergo sum" Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    How much?
     
  8. OC Zed

    OC Zed Bludgeon Riffola

    Location:
    Costa Mesa, CA
    I believe someone made that very comparison in the last couple days on the Audiophilestyle message boards. You can check it out over there, but the overall (initial) impression was very positive.
     
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  9. Davey

    Davey NP: a.s.o. ~ a.s.o. (2023 LP)

    Location:
    SF Bay Area, USA
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2021
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  10. tIANcI

    tIANcI Wondering when the hifi madness will end

    Location:
    Malaysia
    Thanks! I’m still looking for a good DAC and both the May and Hugo TT2 are in the shortlist.
     
  11. Shangri-La

    Shangri-La Forum Resident

    Location:
    CA
    Hugo TT2 has a pre-amp right? So it's quite a bit cheaper when you need to match the May with a quality pre-amp like Benchmark LA4.
     
  12. tIANcI

    tIANcI Wondering when the hifi madness will end

    Location:
    Malaysia
    Can always test both through a preamp and then set TT2 to DAC mode. :D

    Can’t wait for part 2 of the video.
     
  13. Ham Sandwich

    Ham Sandwich Senior Member

    Location:
    Sherwood, OR, USA
    There is also a single box version of the Holo DAC called the Spring that sells for around $2000 to $2800 depending on options. If the two box version is too expensive you can get the single box version for about half the cost.
     
  14. Spaceboy

    Spaceboy Senior Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Near Edinburgh, UK
    In part 2 in a few days he compares the May to the Chord Dave with M-scaler. And he says in the comments on part 1 here that he wasn't even tempted to keep the Dave/M-scaler. So I'd forget about the TT2.
     
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  15. Ham Sandwich

    Ham Sandwich Senior Member

    Location:
    Sherwood, OR, USA
    GoldenSound does have good ears for subjective listening along with a very good understanding of the technical side. I have found his subjective impressions of gear he's reviewed that I've also heard have been in agreement with what I hear. He's able to listen for some of the things I do and care about in subjective listening. So I do find his reviews to be very useful to me. I'm eagerly awaiting part 2 of his Holo May review where he gets subjective.

    I will say that NOS DACs generally aren't my thing. I haven't heard a NOS DAC yet that has the style of imaging precision that I'm after. I like to be able to hear imaging precision in 3D space. And that's something that NOS doesn't do well compared to certain oversampling DACs (like Chord and Yggdrasil). For example, when listening to a well recorded Bach Concerto I want to be able to hear the theme as it is passed from one player and instrument to another. Bach concertos often have a theme that gets passed around amongst the musicians like a hot potato. I need to be able to follow that hot potato in 3D space. Be able to hear exactly which player is playing and follow that theme in space (imaging precision) as it gets passed around. I find that a fascinating way to listen on headphones. It puts me there where the microphones are. Oversampling DACs that I like will do that. I haven't heard a NOS DAC yet that does that well enough.

    I'm curious about what his subjective part of the review says about imaging in OS mode and NOS mode with the Holo May.

    Kitsune HiFi is in the Seattle area and comes to headphone meets in the Seattle area. There are also a couple of Seattle folks who have Holo Audio DACs who also come to headphone meets. When we can finally have meets again I'll get to hear the Holo DACs again.
     
  16. Strat-Mangler

    Strat-Mangler Personal Survival Daily Record-Breaker

    Location:
    Toronto
    What does the 2nd box do, exactly?
     
  17. Encore

    Encore Forum Resident

    Power supply
     
  18. tIANcI

    tIANcI Wondering when the hifi madness will end

    Location:
    Malaysia
    :D:D
    Oh boy … hehehe … I think the black finish will go well with my Benchmark AHB2 once I get the LA4 pre in black. :D
     
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  19. Davey

    Davey NP: a.s.o. ~ a.s.o. (2023 LP)

    Location:
    SF Bay Area, USA
    Yes, though according to Kitsune, they are currently awaiting release of the Spring 3 so the previous version is discontinued and not available.
     
  20. Ric-Tic

    Ric-Tic Forum Resident

    Location:
    Stockholm
    Holo May has got my intrigued. I am looking for a end game DAC this and a few others keep popping up on the radar. A good DAC with either DS or R2R topology combined with software upsampling to very high bit rates seems to be the bees's knees over at audiophilestyle.com.

    I am currently ploughing through different threads, but it is rather difficult to find a description how it actually sounds (Holo May or other Dacs). In every thread each poster seems to agree that their particular dac sounds "Awesome" or "Amazing", which I am sure of. However, it is not very helpful for digital playback illiterate like me.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2021
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  21. Strat-Mangler

    Strat-Mangler Personal Survival Daily Record-Breaker

    Location:
    Toronto
    That's everywhere for nearly every piece of gear. People usually are not objective in how they view their new gear.
     
  22. tIANcI

    tIANcI Wondering when the hifi madness will end

    Location:
    Malaysia
    Reviews need to state in detail what is heard that makes it so awesome. With clear comparison to other components so readers can have a proper reference and understanding.
     
  23. Davey

    Davey NP: a.s.o. ~ a.s.o. (2023 LP)

    Location:
    SF Bay Area, USA
    John Atkinson did describe the sound fairly well on its own, and in relation to the $10000 Weiss DAC he had on hand at the time, in his brief review before making the measurements... HoloAudio May (Level 3) D/A processor
     
  24. Ric-Tic

    Ric-Tic Forum Resident

    Location:
    Stockholm
    Thank you very much! Very helpful indeed and lots of useful information in the review. The May will stay on my list.
     
  25. Ric-Tic

    Ric-Tic Forum Resident

    Location:
    Stockholm
    I must say that forum members at SHtv are an exception to that rule, but I agree with you in general. This forum has been my bread and butter for the last five years sourcing new music and audio hardware. Recently, I switched to AS to read up more about DACs and digital playback in general, and it struck me that descriptions of how different component sounds were few and far between compared to this forum. Obviously, I may not have identified the members to look out for yet at AS.

    I must wonder a bit off-topic and take the opportunity to say thank you for the excellent review of the Lehmann Decade, and the description of its sound. It was really helpful when I decided to buy a new phono stage not very long ago.
     
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