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SOLD - FOR SALE: Monarchy Audio (SOLD to Chad)
Item #648991356Info: Monarchy Audio (SOLD to Chad)
|Days in System:||944
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Monarchy Audio NM24 DAC/Linestage
- Direct shipping right to your door (major urban centres).
- Monarchy DR-1 Digital Coax Cable (US$239.00 value)
- Installed Upgraded Tubes - 2 pairs Cryo’d NOS 6H23 Voskhod “Rocket Logo.” “If I had know how good these tubes sounded when I was looking for 6922 variants, I might not have purchased my Telefunken CCa’s” Value – priceless – LOL
The Monarchy 48/96 DIP Upsampler (highly recommended) shown in the photos is not included in the listed price but can be purchased at fair additional cost as part of a “package deal”.
This unit is in perfect electrical, mechanical and cosmetic condition and ships in the original factory packaging.
Monarchy Audio is well-known and respected for over-delivering on price and performance in a world of elite, extravagant, expensive and slickly packaging audio bling.
Doug Schroeder, DAGOGO
“If these components were slickly packaged, promoted through glossy ads, and had user-friendly manuals, they would likely be well known in the industry, for their sound can compete at this price point with any comers. In their current state, they are niche electronics, jewels, mined by people willing to dig a bit more to discover them.”
The Monarchy NM24 represents an extraordinary value combining a statement tube DAC, a solid state DAC, and a tube Line Amp (capable of driving dynamic headphones direct) all on one chassis for unheard of flexibility. It uses two toroidal power and no less than ten sections of power supply regulation for the separate digital and analog circuits. Construction is robust and parts quality is high, with Teflon insulated internal wiring. Not only does the NM24 look good, but it’s very heavy for its size and is built like a tank on the inside, where it counts.
In my system(s), I used a dedicated Mac Mini as transport feeding the DIP upsampler through the Optical connection. The output of the DIP was fed via the DR-1 cable to the NM24 coax input. The DIP upsampler conditions the digital signal and outputs at 24 bit, 96khz which allows the NM24’s DAC chips (the excellent Burr-Brown PCM 1704K) and digital filters to perform to their fullest potential.
All of the specs and operational features are readily available on-line so I’ll focus on providing the details of the most important aspect of it’s performance – how does it sound!
From respected high-end audio designer (and some-times reviewer) Lynn Olson in Positive Feedback
“The DAC is the best I've heard to date, and the kicker is, the linestage is really good too! I've auditioned the M24 in Thom Mackris' (http://www.galibierdesign.com/) system, with its $27,000 front end and $15,000 Azzolino speakers, and the linestage works beautifully with this exotic all-analog system. It also sounded so good on CD that the little Red Book monsters kept up quite well with Thom's analog front end—staggering considering this analog front end consisted of a Dynavector XV-1s, Tri-Planar & Schroeder Reference tone arms, the top-of-the-line Galibier turntable, and the Artemis Labs phono preamp. (Which by the way is the best record player I've heard to date.)
This is especially surprising since an analog front end of this quality normally means that Red Book listening sessions are quite short—the quality difference is so appalling that Red Book just about always sounds like a car stereo in comparison. This is the first time I've ever heard Red Book in the same quality league as a world-class LP front end. The M24 also has an important attribute of the best Red Book players—it "rescues" the rough-sounding digital recordings made in the Eighties.
How does the M24 sound with audiophile recordings? Well, really good, of course, all of the audiophile virtues in abundance. The most noticeable trait is the vividness of tone colors and dynamics that are nothing less than stunning. When you've been listening to the delta-sigma DACs for a while, the sheer push-you-back-in-the-chair impact of ladder-DACs can take you by surprise. There's also an emotional quality to the experience that has nothing to do with audiophile adjectives at all—if music moves you, this is the one to get. Yes, I'm talking to you, triode, electrostat, and horn fans. This is the DAC that will make you fall in love with your CD collection, possibly for the first time”.
Stereo Times Music's Magic on a budget! By Frank Alles
“In my view the Monarchy M24 DAC/Line-stage is a remarkable product. The DAC or the tube line stage by itself would be worth Monarchy’s low $1490 price, but to get both units rolled into one very attractive component definitely strikes me as quite the sound bargain. The prospect of tube rolling in order to tailor the M24’s presentation to one’s personal taste is something that most audiophiles will welcome. I certainly enjoyed experimenting with different 6DJ8/6922-variety tubes that I had on hand.
If you’re looking for a DAC that will allow your system to sound smooth, natural, and musical, then the M24 should not be overlooked. Many audiophiles will recognize the value of being able to run a phono stage or other source component through the M24’s great-sounding tube line stage. Probably the highest compliment I can give is that the Monarchy DAC has replaced the Benchmark DAC1 in my reference system—not because it is more precise or revealing, but mainly because of its mesmerizing midrange virtuosity”.
Doug Schroeder , DAGOGO April 2008
“The Rega Saturn acted as transport for the M24, and this was one of the unexpected pleasures to come out of this review. I have great admiration for the Rega’s sound quality, as I feel they have created a superbly listenable player in the Saturn. Honestly, I did not expect much competition from using the M24 as a DAC fed by the Saturn. I was wrong. The same palatial size and golden openness was present in this setup. I found that it was very close, almost a dead heat as to which presentation I preferred. There was an ever-so-slight diminishment in clarity from the addition of a set of IC’s and the M24, but it was offset by the expansion and tube warmth of the external DAC. The thought struck me: Would the Apollo, Saturn’s little sibling, in use as a transport yield virtually the same result? If so, someone could do serious damage to the pretense of high-end drive/transport combos with the Apollo and M24!"
As an added bonus, a few words on the NM24 for “Head-Fi” enthusiasts
“I guess what struck me as most amazing… is how it literally transformed my Sennheiser HD650 headphones into "World Class" headphones. The HD650's, are known to be a bit too dark and warm, without the fast, bright, detailed, clear highs of several other headphones (e.g. Grados, ATH's, etc.) – being overly dominated by their bass and lower mids – and… very hard to drive to their full potential. But… the M24 quite literally "wakes them up" – bringing out their upper mids and highs and making them seem much brighter, clearer and more detailed than other DAC's do. I had often read that the HD650's "scaled up" well with much more expensive equipment – well… it's true, even with some modestly priced equipment like the M24. I have no idea, what the M24 provides, that others don't, that makes them perform, but it clearly does. In fact some have suggested… it brings the HD650's to the level of the one, or two best headphones available (e.g. Senn Orpheus HE90 / HE60, AKG K1000, Sony R10, ATH L3000, etc.). And… of course it excels with my other headphones as well – Sennheiser HD600's, Grado RS-1's, and ATH AD-2000's”.
Thank you for viewing.
As always, addiitional details promptly provided upon request.
Original Factory packaging, power cord, installed upgraded tubes, DR-1 digital cable
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