Audio Mirror Tubadour V

Hello Music Lovers

I have been listening to my system with the new Tubadour V Dac and can honestly say Holy Crap. Vlad has worked his magic again. I had the III and IV and they were excellent. Now V brings us to another level. Top to bottom. Width and Depth. Detail-You Bet.Fatigue-Forget about it. Just plain good to my ears. Thank you Vlad     Again!



Hello Mr. Smallmouthrule,

I had the Tubadour III and IV myself.  I love how they sounded and performed.  How would you describe the difference between a V and IV?  Is it immediate or does it take time to notice?  I'm not sure what to expect from a newly redesigned tube stage.


Kind Regards

The V to me is bigger in sound with more clarity while keeping that smoothness I like with the Tubadour. It is still breaking in.I have maybe 25 hrs. on it so it will just get better. I use it with my Mano Ultra MKiii connected by a Jorma AES. Very nice to my older ears.

I have had 2 days with the new Tubadour V and I’m not going to lie, it is much more different than I expected. I was expecting the same as the III and IV but bigger, but Vlad is doing something different with the sound. The vocals, while beautiful on the III and IV, used to feel like it was constricted in some way (like a tense ball). That is gone now, the V is more fluid and clear (accurate) but not as much reverb and romantic aura. The V brings details, details, details. Like someone with a flashlight is revealing voices, bass lines, and other nuances that I never noticed before. It seems like a 2 edged sword because some songs that I have listened to for ages, now sound a little different with these new details (like an intruder!). I swear I thought the Dac was making crap  up on some songs that I knew intimately but now have like a whole new instrument in the back. I don’t know if I like that or not. I will wait for it to break in a bit more and will report back.

Any updates on how the V compares to the III and IV now that they are broken in?

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smallmouthrule and jrizk13, any updates on the sound of the V compared to the IV and III ?


I've had the Toubadour V for several months now and it is very satisfying. I have compared it with some other DACs and much prefer Vlad's house sound. I did ask Vlad to upgrade the fuse on mine for an extra upcharge.

Highly recommended. Punches way about it's cost, and sounds like a lampizator that costs 3x the price of this Toubadour V. 

I've never had the IV or III so I can't compare.


What other DACs did you try before settling on the Tubadour V?

Considering upgrading my MHDT Orchid, which is a great DAC, just looking to take it to the next level.

@timski Before settling on the Toubadour V I had a Schiit Yggdrasil OG. I had previously listened to a Denafrips Aries (not sure which gen), a Weiss 204, a Gold Note IS 1000 integrated with DAC included, and a Mola Mola Makua pre with DAC included (my understanding is that this is the same Tambaqui DAC stuffed inside the Makua).

When corresponding with Vlad, I told him that the Weiss was my favorite followed by the Makua and he suggested that I would probably benefit from a more analog sounding DAC and to give the Toubadour V a shot. I’m very glad I did.

Since then I’ve compared it with a Cayin Tube DAC (forgot the model), a Merason Frerot, and a Lampizator Pacific (don’t know which gen) and I few others that I don’t particularly remember anymore, or I didn’t have enough listening time to form any meaningful opinion.

I’m buying the Cayin Tube DAC for my second system and will pass on the Okto DAC8 and the Yggdrasil to an employee shortly.

One final note, I added a Denafrips GAIA DDC to the chain and I noticed an immediate improvement with paired with the Toubadour V. I still can’t put my finger on what exactly improved, but it sounds better to my ears so far.

I forgot I had also auditioned the Chord Dave. The fact that I forgot about it shows that I was not super impressed by it at that time.

@dhungana Thanks for your detailed updates. Interesting observation of better sound with the addition of the DDC before the AM V. I have heard that Vlad is using some DDC tech in the V. Perhaps this is a case of more can't hurt, and can or should help?


Thanks so much for sharing your experiences, you’ve tried quite a few DACs!  I’ve also had the Yggy and briefly auditioned a Denafrips Venus II.  I prefer the Orchid to both.

I will definetly add the Tubadour to my list of DACs to consider for purchase sometime this year.

How long would you say the Tubadour takes to warm up?  On his website, Vlad states that it should only take about 15 min to be fully warmed up.  Was wondering what your experience with this was.

@nwres Definitely a case of "more can't hurt".

I tried pairing the GAIA DDC with the Okto DAC8 and that too yielded improvements.

I will just say to my ears each new version of the Tubadour brings a little more detail and soundstage. They are all wonderful sounding but each time Vlad works his magic it brings it up a notch.

Thanks for your perspectives @smallmouthrule and @dhungana. I have been in contact with Vlad who has been very responsive with questions. I am sure I will end up with a Tubadour in the future.


Vlad is a true craftsman and artisan. He doesn’t churn out a stream of different products he simply focuses on what he knows best and makes incremental improvements.

If you get a chance, have a listen to his SET45 creation.