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Anyone heard Wavelength Proton? - Page 2

post #16 of 35
Well first, I can't tell if the headphone out is 1/4" or 1/8".

I know it has a li-ion battery, but is it charged only via the USB interface or is there a separate power brick included?

Is there a gain switch for the headphone out (maybe like the computer controlled volume, or perhaps internal jumpers)? Or is it really meant to pair with a separate desktop amp (and the headphone out is more like a line-out stage)?

If the headphone out is good, what are some of the specs? Output impedance, max current/Vp-p etc. Will it be sufficient to drive low impedance phones?

Finally, how does it sound? What should I expect?

I'm trying to build a system that can be used in the following scenarios:
1) With a laptop at work. Personally I don't mind an extra power cable, but would like a one-box solution. So far I only have low impedance phones.
2) On my nightstand at home. Also paired with a laptop, but instead of large phones driving IEMs. One box is essential here.

Price: It says "starting at $900", I guess I would like to know what the various options are and what the price 'ends' at! At this price I kind of expect to have to buy a separate amp, but would like to be proven wrong.
post #17 of 35
it's a mini (1/8")...

it's charged only via usb (no brick)...

the headphone volume is controlled the same way the rca out volume is controlled (via the computer's slider)...also, having the headphones plugged in does not mute the rca output...

i've forgotten the impedance specs, sorry...i do know that more than a few people have been using the k701/2 with good results...& Gordon mentioned using senns...with the brief time i had with it, i used d7000...that was alright...

i didn't spend enough time with it to comment fairly on its sound...it uses black gates (the red ones) and therefore takes quite a long time to settle/burn in...you can ask decur about the sound...

the price is $900...there are no options and no discounts to be had (unless Gordon says so)...
post #18 of 35
Hi,

Thanks for the data. You mentioned that you used D7000s with it, which are low impedance phones. Just alright?

I understand that there are no discounts to be had, but I just wonder about the starting at $900. I read a thread which Gordon was asking if there were any caps as nice as black gates to use as bypass caps, and I'm wondering if there is different pricing for different bypass cap types or something. I guess I'll just call and ask, though the lack of subjective reviews makes me a bit nervous.
post #19 of 35
well when i asked Gordon about upgrades he said that there were none...if he has them now, i haven't heard of them...

i honestly didn't spend enough time with it to comment...i know that computer audiophile guy was writing a review, decur has it paired with a lisa iii...mercman on audioasylum tried it out (but kept the silver crimson or some such ungodly expensive piece of kit)...there were some at the ny meet, but no one wrote proper impressions...

good luck...
post #20 of 35
Bump.

Anymore experience withthis DAC?
post #21 of 35
right now i am using the proton with the alo amphora amp for complete off the grid enjoyment! the synergy between amphora and proton is amazing!
things to keep in mind are (1) this unit takes a long time to burn in! at least 4-500 hours! (2) i have found that the proton is very picky about interconects!
more so than any oher combo that i own or have owned!(3) this unit is all about the dac(imo) the headphone amp portion of this unit is below fair at best
however the dac is fantastic! and is very natural sounding that just pulls you in!
i really like the proton with the lisa III,but the amphora and proton is special!!!
post #22 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by decur View Post
right now i am using the proton with the alo amphora amp for complete off the grid enjoyment! the synergy between amphora and proton is amazing!
things to keep in mind are (1) this unit takes a long time to burn in! at least 4-500 hours! (2) i have found that the proton is very picky about interconects!
more so than any oher combo that i own or have owned!(3) this unit is all about the dac(imo) the headphone amp portion of this unit is below fair at best
however the dac is fantastic! and is very natural sounding that just pulls you in!
i really like the proton with the lisa III,but the amphora and proton is special!!!
Can you set the volume output on the Proton to fixed only?
post #23 of 35
Velaudio, the Proton does have a volume control that sets the output level on both the RCA outputs and the headphone outputs. So you can set the volume to a certain level and and then leave it to your downstream preamp to control system volume. From what i understand you don't want to set the rca outputs to max volume, but you can leave it fixed. Not sure if this is what you meant however.

Ha, it does take a long time to burn in. But, as I said in another posting, I have K702's so nothing compares to the settle-in time for those. ;-)
post #24 of 35
I've read the review @ ComputerAudiophile.Com and this sounds like an intriguing product. Unfortunately the closest dealer is two states away.

Has anyone seen any other professional reviews? Those of you that own this DAC, what shortcomings have you discovered? I'd be using this as a dual purpose "mobile" and desktop dac/amp. Mostly desktop though.

Any opinions on how this would compare with the following:

1. Lavry DA11
2. Corda StageDAC
post #25 of 35
I just purchased a Proton this afternoon. Way too early to tell anything. Sounds promising though. From the other user posts, I assume this is going to need months of use to get a good read on it. Like you, I was frustrated by the lack of info on these. Stereo Exchange is having a 25th anniversary sale this weekend, so I just decided to take the plunge with no audition. Will be back later to post some thoughts, but may be a while.
post #26 of 35

With or without amping?

Interested in whether or not this needs separate amping - especially for sensitive phones such as RS2s.
post #27 of 35
The question of whether you will be content with the headphone amp in this DAC is probably impossible to answer. I use mine as a headphone amp for my AKG headphones and there is a lot to like. What I enjoy about the headphone output is the clean even-handed flow of the music; it gives an immediate and clean output. As noted above it takes a long time to break in and deliver its best performance. But once you're there, it can deliver quite a lot of musical goodness. I listen to mine, via headphones, for hours everyday.

A full-scale desktop amplifier is -- no doubt about it -- going to give you more oomph, more sparkle, more image depth, etc.. However, you may also find that an additional link in the chain also lessens the experience, at least in some ways.

So I'd say, if you're inclined towards this primarily as a DAC, go for it. In addition to getting a high quality portable USB DAC, you'll also be getting a built-in portable headphone amp in a convenient package. This unit provides both line level and headphone outputs so there's no reason you can't add the amp of your choice later on.
post #28 of 35
I have HF2s and a Proton that is no where near broken in. I would guess that I might have 75 hours on it. Per Gordon's advice, I have just been listening to it and not doing lengthy no listening break in. I initially listened only with the built in headphone amp. Probably listened this way at least 30 hours. I was very satisfied with the sound and it was an immediate upgrade versus my D10 (even with rolled op amps and black gates installed). Then I plugged in my ECSS. While I would say that the improvement is maybe small in absolute terms, it gets me over a threshold where the music is just more engaging. I know that this may not help, but my take is that you would be happy with the built in head amp, at least until you plug in a decent desktop amp.

It is a great dac / amp though. I was nervous about this purchase, but extremely happy at this point.
post #29 of 35
How about some pictures in your respective system? Would love to see the volume control mentioned. So far the picture on the site is,

post #30 of 35
The physical volume control is inside the box and is controlled from your computer via the USB interface. It's the only DAC I've seen operated in this way and is very convenient in my setup.
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