September 16, 2022 § Leave a comment

I mentioned it a couple of times already but I have to tell you that I am in love with the design of the M15 once again here in this closing section. The M15 offers one of the most sophisticated designs in the industry and it is an absolute eye candy with its stellar build and material quality.

It is a capable, great-sounding little device that can dish out a serious amount of juice into demanding cans despite its small size. Overall, I am really pleased to see Questyle implementing their CMA technology into a pocketable device and I recommend you to give it a listen if you are in the market for a dongle.


September 12, 2022 § Leave a comment

As promised in the product sheet, the HiFiman EF400 is absolutely dead silent, even with super sensitive IEMs like my Onkyo IE-C3, or the FiiO FD7. To be sure, I tried various sources to check if EMI shielding was okay too and 99% of the time, I was pleased to hear the same pitch-black background. As I said, I had some parasites, but those were not ground-related, and once I rebooted the device, everything went clear.

Last but not least, I did some comparisons between the single-ended ports and the balanced one. The brand recommends choosing the 3.5mm and 4.4mm Pentaconn to drive high-sensitivity in-ears, and stick with the 6.35mm and XLR 4-Pins for low-sensitivity headphones. So I did the opposite, see how the amp behaves, and… quite frankly, it works well.

CanJam SoCal 2022 Preview

September 12, 2022 § Leave a comment

 CanJam SoCal 2022! 

September 10, 2022 § Leave a comment


September 8, 2022 § Leave a comment

The amount of bass is a bit bigger than in a fully neutral amp. Bass has a great kick and punch, and the delivery is with good impact. Bass control is good, and bass reaches down low to sub levels with an excellent rumble down low. I don’t find the bass to be overly present, but it can’t be ignored either, luckily the quality is good.

The mids, as said, are spacious and airy and the vocals here are slightly more focused and too the front, but not too much. Mids perfectly connect to the bass section for what body is concerned. The mid presentation has that lovely tube smoothness but not too much. It makes the mid timbre really addictive and special.

dCS LINA Overview: Network DAC, Headphone Amp

September 2, 2022 § Leave a comment


August 30, 2022 § Leave a comment

I found the Uniti Atom to be a little warm on the bottom end, while the mids and high were clear and sharp which should appeal to those looking for that live club sound and lovers of contemporary music. The soundstage was very recording dependant, yet large and full, and the Uniti Atom scaled up considerably with higher resolution music, working best with DSD.

As a fully integrated music server, the Uniti Atom is a wonderful value for the money, and the inclusion of a robust and dynamic headphone amp is just a bonus. Highly recommended.

iFi Audio ZEN Air DAC $99 Review

August 24, 2022 § Leave a comment

I must say, I immediately fell in love with that combo as the synergy between the headphones and the DAC/amp was excellent. The neutral tuning of the 560S meshed really nicely with the somewhat warm-sounding Air DAC, which made those headphones sing.

For a $99 Desktop DAC/amp, the Air DAC was pretty clean and transparent and had decent detail. It also pulled this off without undue harshness up top, which is always good when you’re dealing with entry-level gear such as this.

Schiit Audio Bifrost DAC & Lyr+ Headphone Amplifier $599 Review

August 11, 2022 § Leave a comment

I’ll be interested to get my hands on a Lyr+ and see what it does in the event of tube failure as I have not seen a full description of the tube sensing mechanism (how the Lyr+ determines that a tube is present).

The 6SN7 is a fairly common tube but good ones are becoming harder to find, and the prices are certainly climbing. The $599 USD price will turn out to be a good value once tube prices become sane again and users can use the Schiit Lyr+ as a line stage with active loudspeakers or a power amplifier.

ichael Zähl interview headphone amps

July 21, 2022 § Leave a comment

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