Introducing a new up-sample filter: Revelation One

As you can read in the previous posts, evaluation of the apodizing filter from the DSP5200 revealed both advantages and disadvantages. Technical analysis of the filter revealed that it is the minimal phase version of the old linear filter.

Based on these results I set my goal to design a new filter that would combine the advantages of the linear and minimal phase filters, but would have none of its disadvantages. To be able to accomplish this I even had to write my own software to design the filter, because I could not find anything that could do what I required. Now I can report that after many months of hard work and some serious testing I have succeeded!

The characteristics of this new filter are quite remarkable:

  • The sound is perfectly balanced: every frequency range (bass, mid, high) is clearly there, but does not cloud, obscure or influence the other ranges.
  • Lows are incredibly tight and go deeper than ever before. Highs are clear and clean and reveal more detail than ever before.
  • Voices are easy to hear, making lyrics and dialog easy intelligible.
  • The imaging is very spacious, phase effects that normally sound weird now easily lock into place.
  • The realism of voices, instruments and sounds is stunning, for movies sometimes even frightening.
  • It has none of the disadvantages of the Meridian apodizing filter from the DSP5200.

Some additional remarks:

  • The above findings are only valid for playback on loudspeaker systems. On headphones we only found a marginal improvement. This has some interesting implications, which need to be investigated further.
  • It works with both lossless and lossy compressed data. We tested mainly with FLAC and DTS-HD MA, but also MP3, DD and DTS.

The filter will be offered as firmware mod for Meridian spinners (G08, 800v4 and 808v1) and processors (568.2, G61, G61R, G68, 861v3 and 861v4).

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25 Responses to Introducing a new up-sample filter: Revelation One

  1. Robert says:

    The filter installed in the 800 sounds superb, the system never sound so good,
    and Iam extreme critical !!
    Highly recommanded – congratulation to Mr. Apodizer

    Robert

  2. Robert says:

    Dit more tests now, still the same impressions.
    More details:
    The new sound is better in every terms like
    better stage resolution +2
    better carity/transparency +4
    attack of instruments +3
    definition/precision of the bass +3
    screech female and nervous making female voices (not my girlfriend ,-)) +2
    definition/precision of mid/heights +2,5
    Sound pressure/loudness/ volume– impression>> louder have to decrease the volume some numbers-have no exact number here
    Beautifull/warm/sweetness -1 to +1(depends on style and record)
    Food taping factor 0-0,5
    The sound is different to the typical M sound before.
    All that is correct with NO new M sw(6.03)installed in the v6 !

    A strong recommandation to 861v6 users is NOT to install the M-fw and try Mr.Apodizer sw FIRST.
    If you want that sound stay with it. If you dont like it because its not so “warm” as the Meridan sounds(still its an excellent sound as described above), then you can either deinstall it and go back to your “old” sound.
    Or keep the apodizing sw installed in your 800 and
    ——— BUT you can do this only ONE TIMES-only one try-no going back !! —–
    is to install the new 6.03sw in your Meridian v6 and you get a warmer sound. But that sound is ALLWAYS there even when the v6 dont upsamples and dont use Mr.Apodizing revalition filters.
    The M is softer/warmer still with heights, new sound is more lean back and a little bit less live or “direct”.If you dont like it-there is no way back !!
    As the “basic” sound have changed now, also the overall sound with the using of Mr.Apodizers sw have changed now as the “basic” sound from the v6 have a strong influence overall. I just testing the difference between 800 with revalition filters and no 861v6 upsampling and 861v6 upsampling.Will report later more

    Congratulation for making that excellent revelation filters !

    Robert

  3. Ronomy says:

    I tried the new Revelation filter in my 568.2mm with 2.5 beta installed and the result is amazing musical clarity. Forget the Meridian Apodizing filter. Mr. Apodizer has accomplished jaw dropping results with this new filter. My system has never sounded this transparent and now makes me think I purchased a much more expensive processor. Robert’s post is right on the money and everything Mr. Apodizer says in his intro to the new filter is spot on accurate in every way.

    In my system it sounds like my speakers are better time aligned so the speakers completely disappear. Even standing a few feet away from them! Makes me want to get up and dance I am so happy with the sound. Smooth, clean, palpable imaging that extends from in front to way behind the speakers. The old linear filter is harsh by comparison and the image is foggy compared to the new Revelation filter. Top end air is not attenuated like it is with the Meridian Apo filter. Meridian should have released this kind of quality sound when they first released the Apo filter. Meridian has failed in my opinion. Night and day difference. Revelation Filter wins in a big way! Every way!

    People who own the 568.2 should buy this filter now and start enjoying their system all over again. It really is that good. I am just blown away by the incredible sound quality I am getting now. Wow! Well done Mr. Apodizer! Especially you 568.2 owners that don’t have trifield width working. This filter is much more important an upgrade.

    All surround modes are very clear and revealing now so try all modes. I just started using all the other music modes that I just didn’t like before. Wow! Soundstage is massive in all modes even bypass.

    Ron

  4. Kaise Rémy says:

    Hello ,

    How can I do to buy your firmware ?

    Thank’s

    Rémy

  5. Ronomy says:

    568.2 owners! After discovering we need to power reset after installing DSP C files I can now say that the 568.2mm with C00044 loaded and the Revelation One filter combined throws a sound stage that would compete with the best sound systems. This is a major upgrade IMHO. Meridian has continued to compress the sound with each release of DSP C file. The newer C files sound slow and flat even dull by comparison. The original C00049 file shipped with 2.5 beta also sounds very good but with C00044 the soundstage is more massive with micro dynamics now rendered that are almost non existent in all the other available C files Meridian has released. Highly recomended 568.2 owners try this combination. G series and 861 owners will probably hear similar gains. More open top end yet very smooth and detailed 3D like imaging. Real detail not a tipped up top end or harder sound some think is more resolution. Even though it offers more air its actually easy on the ears. At least that is what I hear with my 568.2. One note: 568.2 AC power should be isolated from any switching power supplies for it to sound perfectly smooth and highly transparent. Don’t plug a 596 or 598 into the same power along with the 568.2. It will become harsher sounding and the new C file may sound like too much detail revealing more grit or noise generated by the switching supplies that will polute the 568.2 sound quality. If your system is setup to eliminate these noise sources be prepared for goose bumps on just about every recording you have.

    Enjoy!
    Ron

  6. maier says:

    I did further tests with Erwin sw and the original M-sw in my system,
    a 800v3/861v6 and 8k legacy DSP combination.
    The reason was that I installed the new M sw for the speakers that give better speaker performance as before.
    1) First test was that the 800 don’t use upsampling, -means straight audio stream from the 800 to the 861v6, and the meridian new sw(6.03) in the 861v6 make the processing/apodizing.
    2) Next test was to use Erwins sw in the 800v3. That means the 861v6 receive the processed audio stream from Erwin and instead the C00055 filtering (orginal part of the 6.03 M-sw) I installed as recommended from Erwin the C00044 filtering.
    I expected a “head by head” or a “about equal” result,
    BUT using the C00044 in the 861v6 with Erwins processing in the 800v3 is a VERY CLEAR WINNER.
    Before that result, I did want to make more detailed tests, but as the result is like day and night, I only want to listen and enjoy my system now thats NEVER sound so good-unbelievable.
    I only can strong recommend to use ewins sw in the 800 and his suggestion to use the C00044 filtering in the 861.
    Thank you Erwin to make that excellent developement, M-never have made such a good impovement as Erwin did.
    Shame on M that “a one man company” puts Meridian to shame so clear.
    Erwin, congratulation, keep going.

    Robert

  7. Robbo says:

    Very interesting information posted here !

    As my set is almost exclusively used for movies only (Blu-Ray via HD621), i do appreciate the explainations regarding the DSP-C. I was always under the impression that upgrading my 1.44 G68 was not necessary since apodizing was done in the HD621 and thus the G68 did not have much influence on the sound anymore. So I will gladly try the 00044.

    Any plans for your filter mod for the HD621 ?

    • Mr Apodizer says:

      DSP-C has nothing to do with apodizing, which is performed during up-sampling on a different DSP and earlier in the chain (right after input).

      As for my Revelation One filter, there is no support for the HD621 (yet). But since almost all movies are just 48kHz and you have a G68, you can disable upsampling (and thus apodizing) in the HD621 and use Revelation One in your G68. You will be amazed how good and realistic movies can sound!

  8. Hello,
    I have a Meridian system with a 800D V4 and a G68D. They have the latest, pre-apodizing release firmware. Would you Revelation filter work with them? Should it be installed in both or in just the 800D? How can I obtain the filter? Thank you in advance.

    • Mr Apodizer says:

      I would recommend installing the filter in your G68D, as the processor is at the central position in your system. This way all sources can benefit from the filter, both stereo and multi-channel sources.

      The general consensus is that up-sampling should happen as early in the digital chain as possible, so preferable in the source. So if you primarily play CDs through your 800D, you could consider installing the filter there too. I have also tried this and I found the improvement marginal at best, but YMMV.

  9. Kaise Rémy says:

    I installed the Revelation One Filter in my G68 , with DSP-C00044 . This association is very good . Compared to the M Apodizing filter, the sound is more defined, faster and clearer. The resolution is very good , the bass are strong and well mastered , and the soundstage seems brighter . I prefer this to the softer sound of the M filter associated with DSP-C00055 .

    Great job . I don’t regret for purchasing the Revelation One Filter .

    Rémy

  10. Bryon Cunningham says:

    I heard about the Revelation One filter from a fellow Meridian owner. When I installed it in my G68, I didn’t know what to expect. 10 seconds into the first track, I knew something very special had happened. There was a significant improvement in resolution, instrument timbres, imaging precision, and timing. And the sound took on a “relaxed” quality that I don’t normally associate with digital sources. Taken together, the changes made the music more expressive and more involving. I was just blown away.

    I’ve done a lot of modifications to my G68, including a custom power supply, high performance capacitors, high precision master clock, low impedance analog output buffer, and ultra low noise op amps. Each of those mods resulted in a big jump in sound quality. The Revelation One filter is like that. It takes your system to another level of performance. I know that sounds like hype, but it isn’t. I have no personal or financial relationship with Erwin. I’m just a very satisfied customer. Erwin has accomplished something truly special, and Meridian owners need to hear about it.

    Bryon Cunningham

  11. jimkmbca says:

    I would welcome some further info about your filter. I’d hope to learn what changes you introduce for the 861v4 which has Meridian’s latest update, how your filters are installed, and if the process can be reversed if something goes wrong. Thank you.

    • Mr Apodizer says:

      With the latest update I assume you mean firmware v6.03, which has the much overhyped apodizing filter, +3dB trick on stereo and direct mode and the Trifield width fix. My filter will replace the existing filter, the +3dB trick can be done manually for all modes (incl. Trifield) and the Trifield width fix is already solved by installing DSP-C00044. In a nutshell: the new official firmware is useless. And because of the new encrypted firmware file format (mfq), my filter can only be installed in the ‘old’ firmware (v4.25).

      Just to be clear, for the 861 firmware v4.25 with the Revelation One filter will sound better than firmware v6.03 (with the Meridian apodizing filter). This is independent from the revision of DSP-C used, but I strongly recommend C00044.

  12. I would like to report that Erwin is extremely knowledgeable and helpful. His Revelation One filter is a great value, offering a lot of sonic bang-for-the-buck. Because of the variety of music formats and sources I have, I ended up getting Revelation One filters for both my 800v4 and my G68D. The installation on both devices went smoothly, and the improvement is very audible. Cleaner, tighter, better defined, more transparent. The treble is very clean, sweet and well-defined without being softened as with Meridian’s filter. Timbres at all frequencies are very musical. Transients and attacks are fast without any artificial etching. The Revelation One filters and the C00044 hack (used in my G68 for Trifield playback) have reduced the difference between well-engineered red-book audio CDs and high-definition (SACD/DVD-A) recordings. Now I need to start going through substantial parts of my huge CD/DD/DTS music collection since they all sound remarkably better. I have many months of intense and pleasurable music listening ahead of me.

  13. Dennis Waugh says:

    6 March 2012. I purchased the Revelation One filter.
    My system is, SBT with linear PS, G68J, EAR 869, PMC DB1i and a small living room.
    All music is ripped as FLAC files to my squeezebox server and streamed to the SBT over a wired network.
    I listen solely to 2ch music and prefer DIRECT mode on the G68.

    I had been running the unofficial G68_144a firmware since March 2011 and I was delighted with the sound improvement this firmware gave me over the stock firmware. I appreciated the time and effort of the person who originally made this unofficial firmware available! ….

    After reading user comments on this site and re-reading the HH unofficial firmware thread and comments about the latest official firmware , I decided to go with the Revelation One filter.
    Installation was very straightforward and the process was completed within minutes.
    After powering off and back on I sat down to listen.

    Amazing.
    I 100% endorse the comments from the previous posters about the sonic improvements the Revelation One filter has brought to the G68.
    Within seconds I noticed a significant improvement to the clarity and insight into the music.
    Focus and placement of vocals / instruments was so much better.
    I didn’t need to think about what I was hearing. I was hearing it.

    Without a doubt, the Revelation One filter is the most significant upgrade to the Meridian G68 I have made.
    I would urge all eligible Meridian owners to give this filter a try. I’d be surprised if anyone would invoke the 30 day money back policy.

    I think Meridian should consult with Mr Apodizer.

    • Bob Matthews says:

      Hi. I have a Meridian 568.2 (latest firmware) and 621. Sources are Mac Mini (Pure Music up sampling WAV files to 24/96), Cambridge BD player and Sky box. The Mac uses optical directly into the 568.2 and the other sources go via the 621. The 568.2 is connected by balanced cables to a DEQX HDC3 crossover / correction processor and then to Wires4sound amplifiers, 10 channels used for active power to my main speakers. What would you recommend?
      Kind regards
      Bob

      • Mr Apodizer says:

        I would recommend to turn off upsampling in Pure Music and use the Revelation One upsampling filter in the 568.2. Besides the sonic advantages of the Revelation One filter, also your other sources will benefit from the filter. Since Revelation One also brings back life in lossy compressed audio, make sure all decoding happens in the source. The 568.2 (like all other Meridian processor) can either decode or upsample, but not both at the same time.

        Depending on your exact usage of the the DEQX, you may consider upgrading to a G68 or 861 and use MRC instead of the DEQX. This would eliminate an additional component from your setup and avoid an extra DA => AD step (assuming you have connected the DEQX using the analog connection because you mention the balanced cables).

  14. Pingback: Boothroyd Stuart: Meridian, perfeksjon for perfeksjonister - Side 10

  15. Nino says:

    Hi there,
    I have G68ADV with 1.5 firmware, G08 with original firmware and 808i –276 firmware.
    I use G08 with G68 and alternatively 808i
    Question: is it the same firmware that I can apply to all three units or we need to buy separate software for every unit?
    Thank you
    Nino

    • Mr Apodizer says:

      Hi Nino,

      You pay the normal price for the first device, and a special discounted price (1/3 of normal) for each additional device. You will receive a separate filter installer app for each device.

      You will need the original firmware for each device you want to install the filter. For the 808 I am only aware of the existence of v2.73. Do you have the original files of v2.76? If not, then this version of the firmware can not be supported.

      • Nino says:

        Thank you for quick response. I’ll try to find 2.73 for 808i.
        How much will be filter installer for 808i and how much if I add G08 or G68ADV.
        Was there any comparison/experience or thought regarding sound quality of 808i vs
        G08 + G68 with your filter?
        Thank you
        Nino

      • Mr Apodizer says:

        For information about pricing and supported devices and firmwares, see this page on this site (also accessible from the menu bar).

        Meridian advocates to perform the upsampling as early in the chain as possible, as jitter is lower on higher sample rates. So it might make sense to put the filter in the source (G68 or 808). However most customers use the filter in the processor (G68 or 861). In that case you must disable upsampling in the source.

  16. Terry Ellis says:

    I have been using the Revelation One in my 861 V4 LPSU for a couple of months now before leaving feedback

    Overall the difference is a marked improvement compared to the Meridian Filter – the M filter squashes the dynamics and sound stage by comparison and fattens the bass making it appear as warmer sound but lacking in so many areas by comparison, others have mentioned these specifically I dont need to again.

    The purchase process was very easy, Mr Apodizer was extremely informative, helpful and answered all my questions – I had many

    The Installation process works perfectly with no side or ill effects in terms of the 861 functions etc, perfectly reliable after installation

    I would say this to interested parties – the Rev One filter is much better than the M filter overall – the sound is far more direct i.e. you get much closer to the sound with it installed, its cleaner from top to bottom, in cleaning up the bass there is less bass, or in reality just less being added to the bass.
    This did throw my systems balance off for a while until I was able to work it out – initially my system sounded too forward and too hard – very non Meridian. I was able to re balance the system with the 861 and sub woofer trim levels, this is worth pointing out if you find yourself in a similar position after installing the Rev One. Once fixed big overall improvement

    Secondly with the Rev One Filter in place I was able to hear that my manual MRC bass filters were wrong – REW measurements did show up my error, I was not able to tell this with the M filter in place, it was smudging over that big crack – once fixed big overall bass improvement

    Thirdly I was able to hear a level of noise layered onto the presentation – masking detail and adding a layer of hardness to the sound. I traced this back to my power configuration and have addressed this with more and more comprehensive power conditioning and mains layout. Once done Big Improvement overall.

    Looking back at my systems history some of the biggest improvements I have made have shone a light on how things were not quite right in the setup – when you open the window its not always the rosy picture we want it to be – however get the painting right and the rewards very much come.

    Music is the best its ever been here if you value a sound with less addition or “fat” added to it – some people might think “fat” being added is more music – however once you hear it removed you realise its actually just masking the music – the Rev One definitely removes the fat the M filter was adding.

    A Huge benefit to me of the Rev One filter is the ability to use Stereo mode without sound degradation compared to Direct. This is not supposed to be the case however I was finding Stereo mode lacking in clarity compared to Direct mode. The Rev One filter has readdressed that and allows me to use stereo subs which is vital in my room and extremely important for being able to balance the system.

    Movies where the 861 shines has gone up to a higher gear, the sound stage is very precise, you notice this with more ambient detail that becomes very apparent and clear. Again improvements to the sound from top to bottom and definitely improved cohesiveness at very high volumes that we all like for movies. The Movie overall soundstage has become truly stunning from just 5 speakers

    So in full summary I want to thank Mr Apodizer for his help, patience and support through the buying process and after, it was exemplary. I also want to thank him for making what is a brilliant addition to a great product in the 861 V4 – I thought it was very much showing its age, I was actually considering changing it out for something else and giving up on Meridian. There was parts of the sound I loved but parts I hated – I couldnt get past those – trying the Rev One was actually a last chance for the 861 and I am so glad I did it.
    After installing the Rev One I still hate the way the old school interface works however I really love the sound, its definitely been lifted more in line with my high expectations of what I want from a preamp and it didnt cost many thousands only a few hundred (and some hours of work on setup which were clearly needed anyway)

    Thanks very much Mr Apodizer

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