The transcendental Wadax Atlantis Reference



  • mmam
    edited August 2016
    I finally visited the AE showroom listen to the Atlantis.  I was just speechless after listening to the redbook files of 晚風, 你的名字我的姓氐... so real and touching...  

    Great job Javier.  Your Atlantis is now on top of my upgrade list, bridging my need of a top notch dac and improving the trio playback.

  • I went to AE last Sat and had the same speechless reaction like all others who listened to Atlantis.   I am now using Wadax Trio which comes together with a top tier DAC.   I am impressed by the advancement that Atlantis brings in on top of Trio.    The density of music is second to none.    Listening to 16/44 CD is just like listening to hi-res files.

    I am not sure if anyone listening to Atlantis previously senses that the vocal is a bit "thick".    It was because Atlantis was only connected to a comparatively "low end" power cable.    During my audition, PT swapped this power cable with a Dalby power cable.   You know what, the "real" voice of Sally Yeah came out.   Perhaps those who listened to Atlantis could visit AE once more to experience the true power of Atlantis.

    Javier has really done a great job.    Atlantis is a master piece.
  • 今中午聽過王菲一曲 - 天空 unplugged 普通光碟版, 她的歌聲可達致亂真境界,相信只有他家中全三一系統才可以比較一下. 西班牙的夏狄亞先生今次應是他的終極突破
  • I totally agree with Azzurri's comment that Atlantis should be better coupling with Dalby cable and Ex Linebacker. I tried it at home swapping Goebel + Dalby filter with Dalby + Ex Linebacker, the effect is so obvious. It released the true power of Atlantis. It becomes more quiet, mellow and the already crazy 3d sound stage becomes more crazier. The live-like feeling is getting close to AE showroom's. 
    And I just happened to find I can connect Atlantis with my phone through airplay and it allows me to play songs from Tidal and Moov, etc. I tried the mid-Hifi files I downloaded and the results are amazingly good. The details and resolutions are even more than what I can hear from my in-ear headphone, plus the live-like energy, contours and ambience, it brings computer audio playback to a new level. I don't think I need to buy any CDs anymore. I will try to download some lossless files also to see how crazy Atlantis can become. 

  • Just connected the Atlantis today and without any thought, I use the Ode power cable together with the Linebacker EX as recommended by PT, don't want to waste time to try here and there.

    The recollection of the 'scenic horizon' in the Jul AE Show depicted by Atlantis and Engstrom Erir (EE) all comes back to my mine.  I indeed connected Lars Monica to try and reproduce the closest setup in the show....

    If Trio fills up the contents of each musical images, Atlantis gives life to each one of them!  If Trio throws an engulfing soundstage in the listening area, Atlantis simply puts me back to the original recording venue!  It is more real and freshy!  If Trio can touch your mind whilst you are listening, Atlantis can leave much lingering and resonance to your soul long after the music has ended!

    This is for sure a new page in the D to A technology!

    Great work, Javier!!

  • Javier
    edited August 2016

    The Wadax Atlantis Super DAC is the result of a very intense project going on for the last two years. We have been involving in a project with a well known Spanish university (health related), together with other specialists from different knowledge areas. The aim is to dig deeper into the applications of psychoacoustics to cochlear implants and other hearing aid devices. Patients with hearing problems have severe limitations enjoying music in spite of the presence of advanced hearing aid devices designed primarily for recognizing speech.  


    We like the idea of using our know-how and acquire experiences to help improving life for those that cannot enjoy music the way we do. The idea was to advance on leading researches on cochlear implants, finding alternatives to traditional approach. That is where Wadax contributes the might of mapping technology beginning with a different starting point instead of the standard vocoder (voice coder). 


    For the project we had access to many costly hardware resources such as the latest generation of functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging equipment (fMRI) and EEG (electro encephalogram) equipment.   fMRI (different from classic magnetic resonance machines in Hospitals) is a machine that maps what areas of our brain are activated with what intensity in real time with a time resolution of 1 second.  I can talk about this for hours but let's get to the point.


    There were many challenges to overcome: (1) the machine is huge and the patient cannot wear any of the most typical metal.  It is because the magnetic and RF field generated by the fMRI machine is huge. This took almost 5 months for us to achieve adequate reliability and safety for the patient to begin experimenting our technology using new materials, custom circuitry, and advanced sensor protocols.  It was a beautiful team work with rewarding experiences. 


    This fundamental research work will hopefully translate into better hearing experience of music for many hearing impaired patients.  Music is something that is very remote to them as of today.   The researches reward Wadax immensely with a new perspective in the physical-neural mechanism of emotion build-up from LIVE music. Now I know what should be preserved during the D/A conversion process in order to recreate musicality.   There are many surprises discovered from such fundamental work that will be beneficial to the Atlantis series for many years to come. 


    One of the most interesting research conclusions has tremendous applications in the design of high end audio electronics design. The hypothesis is the following: Emotion build up is a “target” for a listener.  Live music is the “mean” to charge up the emotion. Our conclusion is that a LIVE event triggers emotion to an intensity that no playback device can ever achieved. That is further substantiated by fMRI and later with electrodes alongside EEG equipment in LIVE music events, with blinded eyes.


    And there is another very interesting conclusion inferred from our researches. Different subject perceives tonal balance differently but every subject 'locks' onto a LIVE presentation with almost immediate response to emotion build up. 


    So there is something UNIVERSAL across different listener types. And the mandate of Wadax is to get as close as possible to the emotional intensity of a LIVE event via the Atlantis DAC. 


    Javier, Wadax

  • The Atlantis is a very special product indeed.  I have been using the dcs Vivaldi for a while (and I bought it after I auditioned the Trinity and a number of front-end sources) -- it is excellent and it has gotten substantially better after I added an additional atomic clock and after the v2.0 upgrade.  But the Atlantis betters it in every way.  As everyone of you in the forum says, the music feels so "live".  There is so much information, resolution and density, and yet the music does not at all feel cold or analytical.  I played Simon and Garfunkel's Sound of Silence "Live at Central Park" high res and you seem to hear everything (including the silence!).  

    For those who have the trio and use it as a phono, adding the Atlantis (as a DAC) via an ethernet cable (!) improved vinyl replay.  No, I mean "transformed". No one would add the Atlantis "only" to improve vinyl replay (unless you are really wealthy), but from a quality point of view the improvement in the phono is in itself a big upgrade.  I hope Javier's work and research is only at a beginning, and that we will see more revolutionary products like this in the future.
  • The background of developing technology to help the patients with impaired hearing to listen to music is very touching.  And this is the crucial link to the Atlantis DAC that some are listening now at home. I can attest live recordings played via the Atlantis is an experience not to miss. Now I know the scientific background behind it, and that deepens my appreciation of it. 
  • It is indeed very interesting to read the use of an "Ethernet" cable to establish Wadax link between trio and Atlantis would transform vinyl playback.   The whole idea is provacative to conventional vinylphiles. 

    I have a very open mind to new technology. I read Javier's latest post a few times. The meaning behind the project is a touching one. I also went back to read some of his earlier posts. Correct me if I am wrong if I summarise his philosophy wrongly.  So here it goes:

    "Digital technology can advance the true state of the art in vinyl playback. The mechanical configuration of arm and cartridge must be preserved given the historical roots.  Meanwhile, there are limitations in conventional analog technologies to advance the science of vinyl playback to the next threshold. Hence, digital technology is needed to complement analog technology to further advance the art of vinyl playback."

    This is a hypothesis. The trio proves this is indeed possible. And results are staggering to many in the AE community except a few critical ears.  With the Atlantis super dac doing the DA section of the job, it could be a big deal this time. 

  • As summarized by Raymond, Wadax is taking an alternative approach with a counter-intuition belief that getting the most out from analog is by digital processing!   PT forwarded me the mathematics on how Atlantis could achieve this level of performance.   Admittedly I don't understand the details but all I know is that Atlantis is operated in a very low noise floor and residue noise.   I see this digital approach for vinyl a real breakthrough and there are still potential to explore while the traditional approach may have reached the plateau already.

    I listened to Atlantis replay of vinyl early this week.   The most stunning experience to me was on live and orchestra.    Atlantis could paint an enormous stage before you.  It is very crazy.   I asked PT to play 北山修 which I listened in AE many times with other gear combination.    The soundstage and the live feeling are the best with Atlantis.    I was thinking if I was one of the audiences interacting with the singer on stage.   After reading the story behind, I now understand why I could get this "live" feel from Wadax.
  • Azzurri

    Plesse elaborate "craziness".  Some of my friends here in Tokyo had no clue what are we talking about applying digital technology to analog playback. There are too many hardcore conservatives arguing agsinst such approach. 

    What symphonic scores had you experienced other than the Chinese song you mentioned?

  • Voy, if AE has been reproducing music like high resolution movies, adding the Atlantis is just like playing the movies in iMAX camera.   I am familiar with the gear in AE and I know the only difference in my audition last week was the introduction of Atlantis.   I say Atlantis is crazy is that it can bring such an significant improvement to the system.   I always think AE is already driving all gear to the maximum capacity.   However, Atlantis could "overdrive" (I use this term because I am an IT guy) the other components.   It makes the Carmen speakers singing like Universe.   Isn't it crazy?
    I suggest people auditing Atlantis should ask PT to play Aida.   The stage, the power, the details, the brass, the bass, the drums, the trumpets will let you know what craziness is.
  • Anyone else has experienced the craziness of 'Wadax link'? 可以再分享多些嗎?
  • I just went to AE again during lunch time and again shocked by the LP playback through Wadax phono and Atlantis. It is one more step closer to real live performance compared with my last visit with only computer audio playback. The road to music really has no limit. One very obvious character with LP playback is the feeling of space. It can give you an even bigger and deeper stage, really really like being in the concert hall. More than this, is unbeatable density. When these two combine together, I can really "touch" the musicians on stage. Ghostly experience.