Still Looking for a DAC - Audio Mirror Tubadour v and ANK Audio 5.1

So, folks, after returning the Lab12 DAC Reference due to its incompatibility with my CDP, I’m still looking for one. There are two devices that I’m interested in - Audio Mirror Tubadour V and ANK Audio 5.1 Signature or Professional 

If anyone is familiar with those please do share your thoughts.



Well, folks, I’m keeping this baby. All it needed was a proper break-in time. IMO,10 days of being on (night and day) is enough for the initial impression.

As of now those excessive highs are gone, and even though it doesn’t sound exactly tubey as we probably anticipated, it sounds very musical, great mids and tight bass with both tube and solid state electronics. It definitely has more PRaT than the Lab12 DAC I had a few months ago, and the vocals are more natural, not kinda in-your-face.

All I can say it went through very interesting transformation during these days and I really love the results.

And I still don’t have a new cable, next week I’ll order the Acoustic Zen cable.

Also, Vlad told me to use AES input when listening to CDs.

I have to say if you’re looking for a new DAC, don’t underestimate this device. Honestly it’s very good, and visually appealing, plus there’s an expandable (if needed) return policy, so you have nothing to lose.

Anyway, this is it for now. I know my words mean nothing to many, but it’s an enjoyable piece. Good DAC doesn’t need to have 10 tubes and weigh 50 lbs.

Thanks to everyone for your input.

One more thing - there’s no tube-rolling here. In my case if there’s Chinese 6Z4 rectifier then I’ll replace it with Soviet-made equivalent. The other two tubes don’t have plug’n’play equivalents.


Thanks for the update and really glad things eventually settled in to your liking — that’s gotta be a bit of a relief!  I’d be very interested to hear your impressions of the MC2 once it settles into your system (I’ve found even used cables need some time to adjust).

I’m very glad it’s working out for you and I’m sure it will get better. My Audio Note sounded good out of the box, but much better after about 2 months. Also, with any dacs, but especially tubes, IMO, warm up time makes a difference. For me an hour is minimum, but after 2 it’s even better. I was considering an AM, as Vlad seems to also believe in non-oversampling chips and no traditional filtering as does AN, but as the AM prices rose significantly with the new models, the  price difference wasn’t that much.