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Meridian Explorer Reviews

dnun8086

Liquid Gold

Posted

Pros: Reasonable price, Immersive sound-stage , Liquid sound

Cons: Non really....

Prologue:   Lets start with a story of a young man on a desperate mission to rediscover the beauty of music. Long long ago there was a man a man named Dan he had a plan to try a DAC but many seemed to lack true emotion and heart.   OK skip a few chapters the introduction would be far too long and I'm not that eloquent fortunately, this wonderful piece of equipment is. I was out in Birmingham on a day trip when I stumbled onto the uncovering of a Super fi, the sales staff were very helpful leading me to the back room showing me various DACs, headphones and earphones. Feeling rather disappointed by the turn out the gentleman next to me turns and asks for my opinion on the...
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TwoEars

Fantastic Entry Level DAC/Amp

Posted

Pros: Clear, neutral and engaging sound. Surprisingly capable headphone amp.

Cons: For the price? Not much!

Bought this to use on the go and couldn't be happier. I've compared it to both the Dragonfly and Hegel Super and I can say that it comfortably trumps both those. The Dragonfly is good but music from the Explorer seems a bit more easy going and natural in comparison. And the Hegel Super is sadly disqualified for having a very high noise floor, on high impedance headphones you can't hear it but on everything else a very audible hiss is present.   I've also compared the Explorer to my Anedio D1 stationary DAC, and for a $300 portable device it does exceedingly well. As one could expect there is a performance gap here, and in comparison the Explorer comes across as more "mid-fi" rather...
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zolkis

Worth the price

Posted

Pros: gets the timbre right, gets very close to dedicated component DAC quality, scales well with external USB power quality

Cons: not really suitable as headphone amp

I am mainly using the Meridian Explorer on the road, from laptop.   Setup is painless on Mac and Linux. Note that on Linux, it is worth checking the gain settings in alsamixer (only once is enough): - run 'alsamixer' from a terminal command line, - list audio sources with F6, - select Meridian Explorer, and - set the clock selectors, depending on your system. On my Lenovo X230 and X1 Carbon I use -3 dB on both clock selectors (skipping the red range).   It makes a considerable improvement over the headphone outputs when I am on the road (which is its main use case).   When used as a DAC, and compared to my CD player (with built-in R2R ...
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shifter2600

Best Value and Versatility

Posted

Pros: Value,Versatility,Portability

Cons: Higher Power requirements for some applications

I use mine with a OTG cable from my Android Tablet Via Bose QC3's or over my Vehicle AUX input "App: USB Audio Recorder Pro". Also in the house I run it from my Raspberry Pi "Raspyfi" through my Receivers AUX to my ML Vista's and Depth i. Best Bang for the Buck IMO. I auditioned the Dragonfly at the same time and I purchased the Meridian Explorer much warmer sound and doesn't degrade the sound quality as much at high volumes.   I am sure you can use other DAC in the similar fashion but for the 300.00 price point and the excellent sound. I am very satisfied with my purchase.   About the Cons, Not all Android devices will self power the DAC over the USB OTG "on the go"...
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Sam Edwards

Incredible

Posted

Pros: Small, inexpensive for quality

Cons: USB Power issue with a KVM extender

Hey Folks, I have to say that this is the best quality audio I've heard from my MacBook Pro. I'm listening to iTunes through BitPerfect. Most of my listening is through Sennhelser IE80's and it's magical. The vocals sound more 'real' than through any other DAC. I was comparing tonight to the AK120, which I love for a portable player, and it was clear through the Meridian that the acoustic guitar had a pick-up in it, whereas through the AK120 it could have been mic'd. If you want to hear what the musicians are doing, and how they were recorded, this is the USB DAC for you. What's even better is that you just stop listening for the sonic footprint and enjoy the music. All of the...
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