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Matrix M-Stage amp review: simple, cheap, and excellent. - Page 298

post #4456 of 4830

Thanks for the heads up!.

 

After lots of research, I am leaning strongly toward ordering an M-stage. (Or _possibly_ stepping up to the next level of amp circa $650 - although choosing a good all arounder from that batch looks like it may be pretty tough!! :-).

 

And so I am leaning toward buying an m-stage for now, and take more time, and hear more of the options before taking the next step... 

 

Thanks for the info. Please do keep us posted on anything you learn about availability, or any listening impressions, or comparisons.

 

Thanks!


Edited by FLguy - 11/29/13 at 5:38pm
post #4457 of 4830

i delved into entry level audiophilia about a year ago, and bought a HRT Music Streamer 2, LIttle dot Mk2, and a pair of DT990/600, used them for quite some time and been happy on the whole.

 

Fancied more bass so bought this amp alongside some Ultrason Pro 900's. The amp is definately a next level up from LD Mk2, the bass is tighter the piercing highs are more controlled and not as shrill, and the sound as a whole is cleaner, this is using it with both the Beyers and the Ultrasones.

 

Buy one and im quite certain you won't regret it :)

post #4458 of 4830
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaineR View Post
 

Buy one and im quite certain you won't regret it :)

 

Thanks. I most likely will - as soon as I can get more info about the reported new version so I can decide which of these to go for. 

 

From the comparisons I've been able to find, it seems as though I'd likely have to spend in the $800 - $1000 range to do significantly better - and I think before I do that I'll be upgrading my DAC, phones and related bits, so the more expensive amp will likely wait a bit. Plus, I wouldn't mind having the chance to hear some better gear to convince myself it's worth it first :-)

 

If anyone knows of / wants to suggest a better sounding 'all around' headphone amp (capable of driving low and high impedance 'phones) than the M-stage under $700, I'm 'all ears'.

 

Until then, waiting just a bit (hopefully) for more news / impressions re the new version of the m-stage...

post #4459 of 4830
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris J View Post
 

I only hear a low level hum when I use IEMs with the M Stage.
 ...

 

Interesting ... Mind if I ask what gain settings you tried?

 

Out of curiosity, do others find that their IEMs hum when used with the m-stage?  Has anyone identified a work around for that with the m-stage (other than using the other / home headphones :-)

 

IEMs aren't my main intended use, but I would like to understand whether to expect this if/when IEMs are used for what ever reason(s) ... (experimentation/comparison with a different amp from my portable, etc.)...

post #4460 of 4830
I've been using my UERM with my M-Stage and I'm not getting any hum. I have mine set to 10x gain.
post #4461 of 4830
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maxvla View Post

I've been using my UERM with my M-Stage and I'm not getting any hum. I have mine set to 10x gain.

 

Cool. Interesting info (to me at least :-) - thanks

post #4462 of 4830
Quote:
Originally Posted by FLguy View Post
 

 

Interesting ... Mind if I ask what gain settings you tried?

 

Out of curiosity, do others find that their IEMs hum when used with the m-stage?  Has anyone identified a work around for that with the m-stage (other than using the other / home headphones :-)

 

IEMs aren't my main intended use, but I would like to understand whether to expect this if/when IEMs are used for what ever reason(s) ... (experimentation/comparison with a different amp from my portable, etc.)...

 

I must have tried 10 dB a few months ago when I heard the hum, because I can hear hum at 10 dB.

I'm using 0 dB right now, can't hear any hum or hiss!

 

My iBasso D12 also works well with my Shure IEMs.

 

My FiiO E17 is too noisy for IEMs, you can hear a faint bzzzzzz.

post #4463 of 4830
Thread Starter 

Update on the M-Stage refresh - it is available now! As you can see at the Matrix USA site, the original model has been completely replaced by this new update. The amp alone is $279 and the version with USB is $319. So not a huge increase over the original. The USB section uses XMOS for handling signals up to 24/192, and then a TI PCM1793 with an LME49720 opamp in the output stage to the amp section. I don't recall what the original DAC used but this one sounds like it could really be something for the small fee they charge. Here are some pics showing the new enclosure:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

post #4464 of 4830
It looks like the same headphone amplifier in a new box!
post #4465 of 4830

How has it changed apart from appearance?

 

And how does the M-Stage compare to the Lake People G103? I have a Senn HD600 and i'm deciding between this amp and a Lake People amp. I want neutrality though.. so no tubes.

post #4466 of 4830

That case looks shexy! Knob and M-stage logo look way cleaner. Interior looks.... identical. 

 

What are the two LEDs indicating? 

post #4467 of 4830

Ooohh.  The new faceplates looks very nice.  Especially the black one.  Kind of reminds me of the SPL phonitor.

 

I would buy that faceplate and knob and retrofit it on to my M-stage if I could.

post #4468 of 4830
Still the small bad knob setup. Hated trying to turn it so I replaced it with a much larger one and I've been happy ever since.
post #4469 of 4830
Thread Starter 
Matrix says the sond has improved, they call it smoother and sweeter. Not sure how they accomplished that but a likely candidate is a different stock opamp. That makes sense to me. I think one LED is for power on, the other maybe has to do with USB signal lock? Just guessing here.

To answer the question about Lake People G103 - G103 is a bit warmer and smoother than the old M- Stage was in stock form. It has way more power and is a better match for planar magnetics of all brands. Matrix could be a bit more resolving up top, depending on the opamp choice. Both very good options though.
post #4470 of 4830

How does one go about buying a lake people product? Searched their site, searched ebay, nothing...

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