It depends on your source. A good-quality portable player isn't far behind a good DAC in sound quality and probably not worth upgrading. A (non-Apple) smartphone or sub-par computer sound card, on the other hand, can definitely be worth switching from. I've only tried one new DAC in recent history - the Sunrise Audio Ray. My thoughts can be found here: http://www.head-fi.org/t/660291/short-review-sunrise-audio-ray-excellent-portable-dac-amp
Yeah, I thought so, I wanted to do a full write-up but haven't had the time.
Thanks. I can spend up to 170$. M2 are a little bit too bassy compared to more balanced ProAlpha (I like bass, it should be strong but not too much and overwhelming like in SoundMAGIC E10). I would prefer smooth treble and sweet sounding. Recently I've tried Yamaha EPH-100 (I couldn't stand quite harsh high frequency drums like tambourine and its horrible microphonics - except that, they are great). After your last reviews I bought Vsonic R02 Silver in hope they deliver better sound, I'll see. Of course I'm open to your suggestions.
Hmm... I didn't get any harshness from the EPH-100 either. It wasn't a smooth as the Tandem (for example) but it wasn't really harsh. I think you should try the R02 Silver and see what you think, then go from there. Might not have enough subbass if the Tandem didn't. I haven't heard the ProAlpha in a while (though I still have my M1 and M2) so the R02 Silver might be a better starting point for an upgrade.
Wow, that makes them look positively tiny...
You are right! I've tested all seals and with only 1 set the sound turn from bad/awful to wonderful and just right for me :-) Never had in-ear headphones and didn't realise, that seals makes most of the sound properties.
THANK YOU for good recommendation and a professional advice.
Great, glad they're sounding better