Signature modded LKS DAC.. a no-brainer decision
The system set-up I am using currently is Aurender X100 > Modded L.K.S DAC > AMR DP-777 (Pre-amp only, not using the DAC) > DNA Stratus Headphone Amplifier > Sennheiser HD-800.
The Stock LKS DAC before modification was very detailed and had good dynamics and soundstage. Overall it was a pretty good DAC for its price, but I found that it was still a bit harsh and unrefined partly due to the Sabre 9018 chip signature.
I would say that modifying the LKS DAC is a no-brainer decision. The improvement in my opinion and many others’ from the Hiendy forum, was pretty big. First, the sound became more refined and effortless and thus music sounded more analogue and realistic. Next, there were more details in the music and for the first time, I could really appreciate the bass texture of my HD800. The quality of bass from the HD800 was so good that I thought it was even better than the Audeze LCD-3 (supposed to the headphone king of bass) that I owned. With the modification in place, the background became darker and the musicality also improved.
I have tried out the Signature Modded LKS dac directly to my headphone amp. Indeed, after modding, it is much much more refined than before. I thought it competes well with the dp-777 though the signatures are quite different. The modded lks is more detailed and dynamic while the dp -777 is more laid back, smoother and has a bigger soundstage. Both the dac make music sound realistic in different way.
Now I will just use the modded lks dac as the source and dp-777 for preamp (not using the DAC within the DP-777). I find that with the dp-777 as the pre-amp, I have the best of both worlds. The details and dynamics of sabre chip dac via the Signature Modified LKS DAC, and the analogue sound of a NOS dac from the dp-777 tube outputs (using solely as preamp only).
For the modification price that James is charging, I think it is really value for money for the improvement the mod brings along. Highly recommended!
- Janus, happy to have his L.K.S DAC modded