Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?

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JP78

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Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« on: 13 Feb 2015, 08:36 pm »
Is this an apples-to-apples comparison? Both amplifiers seem to be full-featured and of great pedigree and about the same price.  Are there any Devialet owners out there considering the LIO? Is anybody else cross-shopping these two products?

Being a huge fan of integrated amplifiers it's great to see them being pushed to the limits once again. I don't remember there being this much of an effort to push one box solutions since ca. 2000 when several unique topolgy integrated amplifiers were released. I'm very happy with my Bel Canto SETi 40 but am ready to audition these state-of-the-art offerings.

Thanks!

brh

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Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #1 on: 13 Feb 2015, 09:28 pm »
I've never used a Devialet (nor LIO, though that's changing soon!), but I looked into them a while ago, and they are incredibly neat. The approach of a fixed box that is completely reconfigurable with no hardware changing is a very different approach from LIO, and again... it's neat. Neat in a very... gadgety... sense. I have a feeling I would really enjoy it if I had one, it just seems well thought out and... friendly. But I don't think it's nearly as practical as LIO.

For the comparable price (Devialet is still slightly higher) of a maxed-out LIO, you're looking at the 120. That gives you 4 RCA connectors, and USB and TOSLINK. Since it's so configurable, let's not even consider using the RCA connectors for S/PDIF, let's go with USB or TOSLINK. That leaves us with four RCA connectors - either one line in and one line out, or two line ins, or one line in and one phono in... Or, hey, maybe we have a bunch of digital sources, so we go for two RCA S/PDIF inputs, a TOSLINK, and then our trusty old turntable in the other 2 RCA jacks.

Our maxed-out LIO, on the other hand, has three sets of line ins, two S/PDIF (1 coax/1 TOSLINK), one USB, and a phono in. Plus we still have three sets of line outs if we want them. And, while you're paying for all those features no matter what with the Devialet, there's really no reason to start with a maxed-out LIO unless you need it. No turntable? Save yourself money and don't get the phono stage. Oh, your maxed-out LIO comes with a tube buffer as well, which your Devialet does not. If you don't like tubes, well, save yourself money and don't get that for LIO either! LIO will grow (or shrink) with you, which is a major plus in my book.

I suppose if you really have a lot of digital sources, and no analog, Devialet is better. Additionally, Devialet has a streaming option right now, LIO does not. On the other hand, there's one other big thing LIO has going for it, and that is operating off of pure DC, from a frightening looking bank of capacitors. Power amp topology is different as well - LIO being AB (which, judging from Vinnie's other AB amps, should sound spectacular), and Devialet being an odd D/A hybrid. Can't comment on which is better, but they're definitely different.

JP78

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Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #2 on: 13 Feb 2015, 11:26 pm »
I still have a lot of reading to do - but I was coming from the point that both of these companies do offer a kitchen-sink-in-a-box approach. Both of these units are on my shortlist and I guess I was wondering if anyone else is making the same comparison.

You're absolutely right that the LIO definitely has more possible permutations.  The Devialet does offer performance upgradeability in its own way as well as daisy-chaining ability for multiple amplifiers. I'm pretty confident an authorized dealer will sell a new Devialet for 10% off MSRP which I would guess makes these more or less the same price point.

I've heard Vinnie's DAC (older version) and Audeze headphone amplifier and did very much enjoy my time with both.  I'm eagerly awaiting folks to get their LIO preorders in their hands in hopes I can get to go visit a fellow ACer in Chicago, or if I can bribe one to bring the LIO over with promises of food and drink.

brh - I'll be looking forward to your impressions soon as well. :)

Best,

brh

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Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #3 on: 14 Feb 2015, 01:33 am »
I still have a lot of reading to do - but I was coming from the point that both of these companies do offer a kitchen-sink-in-a-box approach. Both of these units are on my shortlist and I guess I was wondering if anyone else is making the same comparison.
Absolutely a similar approach, just handled differently. LIO via hardware modules, Devialet via everything already being in the box, reconfigured via software (which, you can play with on their website and see how your choices impact each other re: RCA connections). And while you have to buy the Devialet set up to potentially do everything it can do, you can buy a really stripped down LIO and add on modules in the future as your needs grow.
You're absolutely right that the LIO definitely has more possible permutations.  The Devialet does offer performance upgradeability in its own way as well as daisy-chaining ability for multiple amplifiers. I'm pretty confident an authorized dealer will sell a new Devialet for 10% off MSRP which I would guess makes these more or less the same price point.
I had forgotten about the daisy-chaining approach, which is pretty neat if you're using them as monos, or creating an elaborate multi-channel system. That is a handy advantage. But it does mean buying a whole 'nother Devialet, so again… kind of a similar-but-different approach, with a different endgame. You're absolutely right about dealer pricing, I didn't really think that through.

Anyway, I don't mean to knock on the Devialet, it's a beautiful machine, it's very clever, and by all accounts it sounds great – the LIO approach just makes a bit more sense for me.


jhm731

Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #4 on: 14 Feb 2015, 03:58 am »
JP78- IMO, the key factor is the speakers you're going to use.

If those speakers are on Devialet's SAM list, I'd go for the 120.

OzarkTom

Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #5 on: 14 Feb 2015, 01:14 pm »
I would have to go with the LIO and get totally off of the power grid. The power grid gets worse and worse as the years go by.

I have been told that the absolute best sounding amp on my Zellatons is the 30 watt battery powered amp by Audio Consulting. But at a price of $46K, I think I will pass and save up for a LIO instead.

charmerci

Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #6 on: 14 Feb 2015, 05:21 pm »
Either of those two are a bit out of my price range, however I am very partial and biased towards buying equipment from AC sponsors!

CarterB

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Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #7 on: 15 Feb 2015, 08:29 pm »
I was considering a Devialet before preordering a LIO (non-deluxe). I would have to save another year to get the Devialet and with the LIO I knew I could slowly upgrade and continue to upgrade if future modules are better. I know Devialet does software upgrades but for hardware you get what you get --though some can be reconfigured. The reasons to me to get the Defialet are the higher watts /SAM for your speakers and wow factor. To hang on your wall is pretty cool and the remote looks so different.

I think the new Devialet Phantom speakers look amazing and provide a cheaper gateway to the Devialet experience, but since now that I've fone LIO not sure it makes sense.

Vinnie R.

Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #8 on: 16 Feb 2015, 09:44 pm »
Is this an apples-to-apples comparison? Both amplifiers seem to be full-featured and of great pedigree and about the same price. 

Hi JP78,

Thank you for your post.  You are correct in that LIO can be configured as a full-featured integrated amplifier.  As others
have mentioned, the D-120 is a great looking product and seems to be loaded with plenty of features.  Based on what I've read about
the D-120, there are numerous differences in implementation between LIO and the D-120.  I am not here to state which is
better (only YOU can be the judge by listening to both units in YOUR system  :idea:), but they take a different design approach as well
as a different sales/marketing approach.  In no particular order, here are some of the differences that I see:

(1) With LIO, you can custom configure and pay for only the features that you need at the time of purchase.  You can also later add features if your needs change.  So if you don't need a fully loaded unit, you don't have to pay for modules (features) that you don't need and may never use.

(2) LIO is only sold factory-direct (if it was sold via distribution/dealers, the price would more than double), and with a
30-day return policy.  D-120 is sold via distribution and dealers, and each probably has a different return policy and level
of customer service. 

(3) LIO's warranty is 10-years (vs. 2 or 3 years for the D 120, as stated on their website)

(4) LIO's analog inputs (line level and phono) are not converted to digital using an A to D converter.  I believe
Devialet does A/D conversion with their products because they offer other features that rely on digital signal processing (DSP).  So
with D-120 - analog is converted to digital, then processed, and then converted back to analog via D to A.  With LIO,
analog IN = analog OUT. 

(5) LIO's volume control (both RVC and AVC) is done in the analog domain, not digital domain like the D-120.

(6) LIO offers a Tubestage module

(7) LIO offers a headphone amp (HPA) module, with a headphone jack on the front panel (SE or BAL output).  It looks like the D-120 has
optional preamp outputs that can also be used to drive headphones - but I am not clear on how that works.  I don't believe it is a dedicated
headphone amplifier stage. 

(8.) LIO's PURE-DC-4EVR ultracapacitor power supply feeds all audio circuitry with pure, high current DC that is 100% isolated from
the AC mains at all times.  D-120 uses an internal switch mode power supply with no isolation from the power grid.

(9) LIO's Phonostage is all analog (including the step-up transformers, JFET gain stages and RIAA).  D-120 converts to digital (A to D) for
phono and RIAA (as mentioned above regarding their line level inputs as well).

(10) LIO's speaker output stage is Class AB.  The D-120's speaker output stage is Class D (and offers more power).

(11) D-120 offers wireless streaming.  LIO does not at this time (but give me a few months  :wink:)

(12) With LIO, you can also customize the enclosure at any time (and we do plan to offer different front panels, tops plates, knobs, etc.).  I'm pretty sure the D-120 does not offer this customization of appearance.

(13) We plan to offer many types of modules in the future based on user feedback (e.g. there is a thread on this forum with your ideas / suggestions - thank you!).  The user can add in features  and upgrades at any time.  LIO does not become obsolete to you.  So for example, if you wanted a different tubestage, different speaker amp stage (Class A, as has been requested), different d/a chipset, balanced in's and out's, etc. - you can later add these in.  You don't have to sell you LIO to find a product that meets your changing needs and desires to experiment with different circuit topologies.  This will be much easier and less expensive than selling your component on the used market (where you typically get 50% or less of the new price that you paid).

(14) If a certain module of the LIO is damaged/defective, we send you a replacement and you quickly install it.  With the D-120, you need to ship it back to the manufacturer to repair. 

(15) It looks like you can hang the D-120 on the wall, but you cannot with LIO. 


I'm sure there are a handful of other differences, and in no way am I saying one is better than the other.  These are just things to consider when you look into which product would be better for your needs, and what offers a better value to you - both now and later.

Also, if I have made any mistakes in regards to what I wrote about the D-120, PLEASE let me know and I will fix them.  What I wrote is based on what I could gather from their website, but I may have interpreted something incorrectly and I apologize in advance if I have done so.

I hope this helps,

Vinnie
« Last Edit: 17 Feb 2015, 04:49 pm by Vinnie R. »

brh

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Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #9 on: 18 Feb 2015, 08:15 pm »
Also, if I have made any mistakes in regards to what I wrote about the D-120, PLEASE let me know and I will fix them.  What I wrote is based on what I could gather from their website, but I may have interpreted something incorrectly and I apologize in advance if I have done so.

(10) LIO's speaker output stage is Class AB.  The D-120's speaker output stage is Class D (and offers more power).

I don't know my way around amp topologies, nor have I dissected a Devialet enough to speak to the veracity of this claim, but one of Devialet's big marketing points is that their amp is some kind of hybrid, operating in class A for voltage, class D for current. They claim that theoretically the class D daughterboard can be removed, and the amp will operate pure class A - at least briefly and quietly before shutting down due to thermal protection. Again, I've learned not to trust high-end audio marketing-speak too readily, and have no idea whether or not what they're doing is really much different from a typical class D implementation, but thought it was worth mentioning that there might be something going on here beyond simple class D.

Further reading for those curious/interested: Patent for 'class ad' amplifier; Devialet white paper (PDF)

JP78

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Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #10 on: 22 Mar 2015, 08:37 am »
(Warning! This is long-winded.)

Thank you all for the input. I've had some time to dwell and I have some notes and updates of my own.

Vinnie - Firstly, congratulations for the exceptional 6moons review! I read Srajan's writing with great satisfaction.  It's clear your careful planning, countless hours, and exacting attention to detail have really paid off.  I also do really appreciate you highlighting several key differences between the two products. Obviously you know your product intimately.

It's also worth noting that my my needs are specific TO ME.  Everyone of us is unique, right down to the frequency response of our ears. :)

I do currently use a Monster Power AVS 2000 (corrects electrical voltage and creates 120v sine wave) and my DAC is battery powered so the effects of dirty electricity from the walls are negated to a significant degree regardless of the amplifier I use.

My speakers are currently Dynaudio T2.5s (86dB/w/m@ 4ohm).  My next pair of speakers will likely be the Dynaudio Confidence C1 (MK1).  I have found Dynaudios to not be the most detailed nor have any other superlatives EXCEPT to always be exceptionally coherent. At first blush there's no wow factor but after being acclimated they transform into being incredibly musical. My listening preferences have evolved over the years to now value coherency above all else - it's what keeps me engaged in long listening sessions. The further up the Dynaudio ladder I go, the more detail and bass I find - but the coherency is always spot-on.  This expense comes at sensitivity though.   Dynaudios are generally on the less efficient side, though for the most part have benign phase angles.

The other speaker brands I'd really like to audition that are known for cohesiveness are Daedalus, Magico, and MBL.  I can't afford any of these anytime soon so it's pretty much a non-issue.

I'm a bit concerned the LIO may not have enough peak power/current for the Dynaudios. Peaks in classical music (and also in movies) can be +20dB or even more.  However, my current amplifier is 40wpc Class A SET and it does a fine job. In my experience SET amps do sound a lot louder than their SS counterparts due to the soft clipping of tubes and as such the 120w of the Devialet is comparable.

Can you let me know what transient peak power is for the LIO and peak current delivery? I'm sorry if I missed it.

The way my friends and I share and alternate music during listening sessions is mostly via streaming unless vinyl is brought over. Vinnie can you please let me know where the streaming solution is on your roadmap? Do you have any preliminary details / design goals set yet?  While Devialet does have this available now, there are still a lot of reports of buggy behavior over on the Devialet forum.

As jhm731 has said, SAM is an incredibly interesting technology that does offer phase correction. The Dynaudio C1 does already have SAM available. The idea of phase correction for better bass integration and extension really appeals to my goals of furthering speaker coherency.  Devialet also has mentioned an increasing commitment to Dynadio, which very much means that in their own way the Devialet will offer an upgrade path for me years to come so long as I stick with Dynaudio.

However, I've never found myself satisfied without tubes in a system. Maybe I love distortion, but at the end of the day all I really care about is what makes me happy and wanting to listen to more music.  In this regard I really appreciate the tube stage available for the LIO and am apprehensive with the regards to the Devialet.

I do love my current amplifier. However, I am also open-minded and firmly believe that new technology does further our hobby and ultimately the joy of music.  In audio, as in life, I've also found a new appreciation for simplifying whenever possible. In this respect, exploring the opportunity to simplify my system is important.

Okay, well all this conjecture is useless without a game plan - here's mine:

1. I'm awaiting my amplifier back from Bel Canto for the latest round of updates.

2. I'll need to listen with my current speakers so I have some handle on the effects of the updates.

3. Upgrade my speakers to the C1.  As I'm purchasing the version discontinued for several years this should be reasonably affordable. 

4. Listen for a while to get very familiar with the new sound.

5. Wait for Vinnie to finalize and implement a streaming module / hope all the bugs are worked out of the Devialet streaming software by then.

6. Once this is done I will have to figure out a way to get my hands on a Devialet.  I'm hoping I can purchase a dealer demo that I can return without a restocking fee if I'm not satisfied.  I don't know how realistic of an option this will be for me.

7.  Coordinate with Vinnie for getting my hands on a LIO at the same as the Devialet. Any worries for returns are negated!

8. Have a three-way amplifier shootout between the Devialet with SAM, Devialet without SAM, Bel Canto, and LIO. 

9. Pick one and enjoy!

Please let me know if there are any corrections, feedback, or suggestions. 

Thanks!




Rocket

Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #11 on: 22 Mar 2015, 11:16 am »
Hi,

It sounds like an unfair comparison of the Deviate 120 vs LIO Deluxe.  I'm sure the LIO is a stellar sounding as an integrated amplifier but it only outputs 45 watts @ 4 ohms.  Your speakers are not overly efficient and you like to play demanding music.  Another consideration is that Devialet is a fairly new company and located in Europe.  Product support is always important when purchasing electronic equipment.

I'm not trying to dissuade you from the LIO just saying the comparison is a bit unfair regarding power demands.  If you like the sound of the SET 40 why not use the LIO as a preamplifier and load it up with the options that you want.  This is what I would do as my speakers Salk Sound Ht3's are 84 db @ 4 ohms efficient. I use 300 watt amplifier to power them but would consider a LIO in the future but still use my amp as well.

Regards Rod

coldfogey

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Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #12 on: 22 Mar 2015, 02:01 pm »
I am using my LIO with a 300 wpc VanAlstine 600R Amp and Vandersteen 3A Sig speakers.  The sound is fantastic.  It is a great match.

OzarkTom

Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #13 on: 22 Mar 2015, 02:44 pm »
Buy the Lio as a pre and use it with your Bel Canto until Vinnie comes out with the higher version power amp. That would be another alternative.

JP78

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Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #14 on: 22 Mar 2015, 07:04 pm »
Hi guys, thank you all for the input and thoughts to consider.

For classical music, my average listening levels are not loud, somewhere around 75-78dB continuous @ 2.5m away. All the other stuff I listen to doesn't seem to have more than 6-10dB peaks and I usually listen right about 80-85dB continuous.

Rod - My current amplifier is 40w @ 4ohm and does a fine job.   I'd like to think that the 45w @ 4ohm of the LIO is a reasonable comparison.  Jeff Dorgay of TONE Audio did a review of the Dynaudio C1 and in his review he did claim to be satisfied when paired with a 10wpc SET amplifier because of the benign and friendly load the amplifier presented.  A Stereophile review published for the C1 did also say the speakers are very amplifier friendly and do act like they are more efficient than the numbers suggest due to extremely gentle phase angles.

Also your point on service and support is well-noted.  I'm sure as living in Australia you have very relevant experience on exactly how expensive and frustrating it can be for international service and support.  Speaking with the Devialet distributor they said they have plans for a US repair center, however no dates were given which is definitely a flag.

It's possible I may be unfairly asking too much from the LIO but for the time being I don't think it's unreasonable for me to try and see. Thanks to Vinnie's generous return policies this is a great opportunity for me to audition in my home in my system. :)

OzarkTom, coldfogey - I have no doubt at all the LIO makes for a world-class preamplifier.  However, a big part of me wanting to go down this road is seeing if I can simplify my system.  I want to REDUCE the number of components and cables in my life, not increase them.  :)

A baby may also be in the picture in the next couple years and as such it's probably a good idea to start planning now how to find something I like that doesn't have 400 degree tubes exposed two feet off the ground.  :o

Best,




« Last Edit: 22 Mar 2015, 10:27 pm by JP78 »

Rocket

Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #15 on: 23 Mar 2015, 11:58 am »
Hi,

Thank you for taking my post in the way it was intended which is just to provide advice.  I checked out the Bel Canto Set 40 and these are the specifications;  continuous power output into 4 or 8 ohms • 37 watts Peak power output • >70 watts.  Its unusual to see an amplifier that doesn't almost double its output into 4 ohms but I am no electronics engineer.

I guess in the end its worth trying the LIO if you are able to return it for a refund.  I understand your concern regarding hot tubes and young children as they just luv playing with audio gear such as dust caps on speakers and cartridges on turntables.

I bought an LFP-V Isabella preamplifier last year from Vinnie and it sounds superb.  I can only imagine how much better the LIO will sound compared with my Isabella preamplifier. His customer service is also very good.

Btw I had to ship back one mono block to the USA for repair and shipping cost me about $1000US for both ways.  Not too bad considering the weight of the amplifier.

Cheers Rod

Vinnie R.

Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #16 on: 23 Mar 2015, 09:05 pm »
All,

Thanks for your posts to help JP78 while I've been so busy these past few days!  :hyper:

Hi JP78,

Quote
I'm a bit concerned the LIO may not have enough peak power/current for the Dynaudios. Peaks in classical music (and also in movies) can be +20dB or even more.  However, my current amplifier is 40wpc Class A SET and it does a fine job. In my experience SET amps do sound a lot louder than their SS counterparts due to the soft clipping of tubes and as such the 120w of the Devialet is comparable.

Can you let me know what transient peak power is for the LIO and peak current delivery? I'm sorry if I missed it.

If your 40wpc SET (into 4-ohms, correct?) is going a good job with your speakers, then I am confident that LIO's MOSFET Amp will
have no trouble at all - as long as you are not finding that you are driving your amp into clipping.  I know it would be soft clipping, but as you push it harder it would not be so soft and you'll know that you are clipping during those transients.  So if that is not happening, LIO will have no trouble!

LIO's peak power is 90wpc into 4-ohms.  If your speaker's impedance dips below 4-ohms at certain frequencies, LIO will have no problem with that.

Quote
However, I've never found myself satisfied without tubes in a system. Maybe I love distortion, but at the end of the day all I really care about is what makes me happy and wanting to listen to more music.  In this regard I really appreciate the tube stage available for the LIO and am apprehensive with the regards to the Devialet.

I highly recommend that (when the time is right for you) you try LIO and carefully compare it to the D120.  I know a dealer who carries the Devialet line and who has also spent much time listening to the LIO.  They are different sounding enough that you should easily be able to pick out the one you prefer... probably in the first song. 

Quote
The way my friends and I share and alternate music during listening sessions is mostly via streaming unless vinyl is brought over. Vinnie can you please let me know where the streaming solution is on your roadmap? Do you have any preliminary details / design goals set yet?  While Devialet does have this available now, there are still a lot of reports of buggy behavior over on the Devialet forum.

What I can share so far about the LIO stream module is as follows:

- Bit-perfect, high-resolution (up to 24/192) over Wi-Fi
- Even if you don't have a router, you can stream directly from the smart phone / tablet / computer to the LIO streamer
- Output of steamer will be I2S and that would feed LIO's DSD/PCM dac
- Hoping to have it out by this Fall (or sooner - but you know how things get delayed  :oops:)
- No idea on pricing yet
- I'll be sure to post more updates over the next few months.  I'm still in the early stages of development with it, but
hope to have a prototype ready to carefully test within 60 days...

Thanks for your posts!

Vinnie

Ultralight

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Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #17 on: 25 Mar 2015, 09:28 pm »
Interesting and logical post.  The single most interesting Devialet feature seem to the the SAM matching with speakers, extending its bass significantly (within reasonable decibel limit depending on driver size and excursion capability) and coherence, especially for smaller speakers.  Besides that, the Lio's features seem particularly compelling.

UL

(Warning! This is long-winded.)

Thank you all for the input. I've had some time to dwell and I have some notes and updates of my own.

Vinnie - Firstly, congratulations for the exceptional 6moons review! I read Srajan's writing with great satisfaction.  It's clear your careful planning, countless hours, and exacting attention to detail have really paid off.  I also do really appreciate you highlighting several key differences between the two products. Obviously you know your product intimately.

It's also worth noting that my my needs are specific TO ME.  Everyone of us is unique, right down to the frequency response of our ears. :)

I do currently use a Monster Power AVS 2000 (corrects electrical voltage and creates 120v sine wave) and my DAC is battery powered so the effects of dirty electricity from the walls are negated to a significant degree regardless of the amplifier I use.

My speakers are currently Dynaudio T2.5s (86dB/w/m@ 4ohm).  My next pair of speakers will likely be the Dynaudio Confidence C1 (MK1).  I have found Dynaudios to not be the most detailed nor have any other superlatives EXCEPT to always be exceptionally coherent. At first blush there's no wow factor but after being acclimated they transform into being incredibly musical. My listening preferences have evolved over the years to now value coherency above all else - it's what keeps me engaged in long listening sessions. The further up the Dynaudio ladder I go, the more detail and bass I find - but the coherency is always spot-on.  This expense comes at sensitivity though.   Dynaudios are generally on the less efficient side, though for the most part have benign phase angles.

The other speaker brands I'd really like to audition that are known for cohesiveness are Daedalus, Magico, and MBL.  I can't afford any of these anytime soon so it's pretty much a non-issue.

I'm a bit concerned the LIO may not have enough peak power/current for the Dynaudios. Peaks in classical music (and also in movies) can be +20dB or even more.  However, my current amplifier is 40wpc Class A SET and it does a fine job. In my experience SET amps do sound a lot louder than their SS counterparts due to the soft clipping of tubes and as such the 120w of the Devialet is comparable.

Can you let me know what transient peak power is for the LIO and peak current delivery? I'm sorry if I missed it.

The way my friends and I share and alternate music during listening sessions is mostly via streaming unless vinyl is brought over. Vinnie can you please let me know where the streaming solution is on your roadmap? Do you have any preliminary details / design goals set yet?  While Devialet does have this available now, there are still a lot of reports of buggy behavior over on the Devialet forum.

As jhm731 has said, SAM is an incredibly interesting technology that does offer phase correction. The Dynaudio C1 does already have SAM available. The idea of phase correction for better bass integration and extension really appeals to my goals of furthering speaker coherency.  Devialet also has mentioned an increasing commitment to Dynadio, which very much means that in their own way the Devialet will offer an upgrade path for me years to come so long as I stick with Dynaudio.

However, I've never found myself satisfied without tubes in a system. Maybe I love distortion, but at the end of the day all I really care about is what makes me happy and wanting to listen to more music.  In this regard I really appreciate the tube stage available for the LIO and am apprehensive with the regards to the Devialet.

I do love my current amplifier. However, I am also open-minded and firmly believe that new technology does further our hobby and ultimately the joy of music.  In audio, as in life, I've also found a new appreciation for simplifying whenever possible. In this respect, exploring the opportunity to simplify my system is important.

Okay, well all this conjecture is useless without a game plan - here's mine:

1. I'm awaiting my amplifier back from Bel Canto for the latest round of updates.

2. I'll need to listen with my current speakers so I have some handle on the effects of the updates.

3. Upgrade my speakers to the C1.  As I'm purchasing the version discontinued for several years this should be reasonably affordable. 

4. Listen for a while to get very familiar with the new sound.

5. Wait for Vinnie to finalize and implement a streaming module / hope all the bugs are worked out of the Devialet streaming software by then.

6. Once this is done I will have to figure out a way to get my hands on a Devialet.  I'm hoping I can purchase a dealer demo that I can return without a restocking fee if I'm not satisfied.  I don't know how realistic of an option this will be for me.

7.  Coordinate with Vinnie for getting my hands on a LIO at the same as the Devialet. Any worries for returns are negated!

8. Have a three-way amplifier shootout between the Devialet with SAM, Devialet without SAM, Bel Canto, and LIO. 

9. Pick one and enjoy!

Please let me know if there are any corrections, feedback, or suggestions. 

Thanks!

Vinnie R.

Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #18 on: 1 Apr 2015, 07:02 pm »
Interesting and logical post.  The single most interesting Devialet feature seem to the the SAM matching with speakers, extending its bass significantly (within reasonable decibel limit depending on driver size and excursion capability) and coherence, especially for smaller speakers.  Besides that, the Lio's features seem particularly compelling.

UL

Hi UL,

I could see the SAM feature beneficial if they (Devialet) worked very closely with the designers of the speakers in which they offer SAM for.  I would think they would want to know the exact details/properties of the speaker drivers, crossover, cabinets, etc.

As far as I know, they did not do this with Harbeth (did not work with Alan Shaw) even though they offer SAM "correction" for Harbeth.

He wrote this on his forum when someone posted about it:

Quote
The technical details of what the Devialet system is and how it is supposed to work are not available for the public, at least I can't find them on their web site. This alarms me, as I know my speakers better than anyone, and in the absence of some facts and figures (and meaningful rather than artistic graphs) I am simply unable to know what miracles are supposed to occur for the consumer, and what the inevitable side-effects and possible Warranty implications are. That fact that (reportedly) a large number of Harbeth users have 'signed' an on-line petition to include their speakers in the Devialet database really alarms me: they have done so in the absence of any meaningful data whatsoever: an emotional response to a technical system without my approval.

If I were a speaker manufacturer and there was a company stating that they they offer a "correction" or "improvement" with my speaker design by using their amplifier that has built in EQ'ing of some sort, I'd probably offer a similar response to Shaw's unless I worked closely with that company and tested it carefully and proved it out.   

Not sure what you guys think about that?

Vinnie

jhm731

Re: Devialet 120 vs LIO Deluxe?
« Reply #19 on: 2 Apr 2015, 01:28 am »
Vinnie,

Have you the heard any of the Expert Devialets (120, 200, 400, 800) with speakers on their SAM list?

http://en.devialet.com/speakers/?utm_source=Members+EN&utm_campaign=7167fcde96-NL1_EN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_707f1626e4-7167fcde96-129926517