or Connect
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › Official Audio-gd Sparrow thread
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Official Audio-gd Sparrow thread - Page 38

post #556 of 725

The 8740 is the cheap chip used commonly in inexpensive gear.  The 8741 is their high-end chip used in, say, the $3000 PS Audio Perfectwave DAC.  The important thing to know is that the latter has considerably less distortion than the former, though in the Sparrow this wouldn't amount to as much as it would in mid or high-end gear.  How this kind of gear sounds really depends on the analog output and headphone amp more than anything, as well as the quality of the power supply. 

post #557 of 725
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

The 8740 is the cheap chip used commonly in inexpensive gear.  The 8741 is their high-end chip used in, say, the $3000 PS Audio Perfectwave DAC.  The important thing to know is that the latter has considerably less distortion than the former, though in the Sparrow this wouldn't amount to as much as it would in mid or high-end gear.  How this kind of gear sounds really depends on the analog output and headphone amp more than anything, as well as the quality of the power supply. 


I would be using the Sparrow as an amp too, so what is your impression of the sound with the 8741 chip. I'm probably just going to get the basic with the upgraded chip. Unless version A has some modifcations other than the upgraded components to get that version to synergize better with the 8741. I like the idea of the better USB although I primarily just rip from CD to Media Monkey, so the 24 bit rate thing is no real big deal to me.

 

Primarily I'm just looking for a plug and play solution that offers an upgrade over my uDAC, I wouldnt even really be looking but my MS2's seem to synergize better with my Clip than they do with the uDAC. So I am searching for a better source for my computer listening.

post #558 of 725

Hello to all.

 

I am Niko from Finland. My english is not 100% so there will be some weird words..dont mind it.

I have the Sparrow A version with WM8741 and it is now burned about 300 hours.

Have to say it really sounds great.

My system is next:

Macbook(2010) optical out - Mitsubishi eska optical cable - Sparrow - ATH-M50

All music files are FLAC.

I really am enjoying the sound of this combination! No need for anything better.

My hobby has been home audio about a decade now. Many different mid-budget systems but now DIY audio is THE thing for me, speaker and amp building.

 

About the Sparrow WM8741.

I first thought it was as good as straight out from Macbook to ATH-M50, but after hearing it sometime and comparing it i noticed it has greater separation of instruments, you can hear more from recordings, lower bass and more natural sound.

 

Try it with FLAC / good accurate files and without too much jitter and it is truly worth its price.

I also like the size of it, fits nicely to the desk without taking too much space.

Next thing is trying it as a preamp to T-amp.

 

Regards,

 

n-a

 

post #559 of 725
Quote:
Originally Posted by KneelJung View Post


I would be using the Sparrow as an amp too, so what is your impression of the sound with the 8741 chip. I'm probably just going to get the basic with the upgraded chip. Unless version A has some modifcations other than the upgraded components to get that version to synergize better with the 8741. I like the idea of the better USB although I primarily just rip from CD to Media Monkey, so the 24 bit rate thing is no real big deal to me.

 

Primarily I'm just looking for a plug and play solution that offers an upgrade over my uDAC, I wouldnt even really be looking but my MS2's seem to synergize better with my Clip than they do with the uDAC. So I am searching for a better source for my computer listening.


If you're going to get the 8741 (I don't have one yet) then you should get the better components in my opinion.  Unfortunately I've never owned nor tried a uDAC so I don't know how much difference there will be, if any.  I think a worthy difference will be had when one gets a $1000 rig more than anything.  Given that the sparrow has a proper transformer and power supply, I would think it would drive headphones better. It also doesn't have any treble roll-off, such as I gather the uDAC does.


Edited by Currawong - 9/13/10 at 5:16pm
post #560 of 725
post #561 of 725

Forget?!? I didn't know it existed! 

post #562 of 725

The wm8741 is higher spec and more expensive.

 

Still, maybe it sounds better. Someone go ask Kingwa if he has tried it :p.

post #563 of 725

Given the endless discussions of Op Amp rolling around here, I thought it was interesting that the Sparrow doesn't even HAVE an op amp in the signal path - the ACSS modules are fed directly fromthe 8741 da chip.  

post #564 of 725

I am considering to get the sparrow as my very first amp.

 

Atm I am using a Sennheiser HD555 connected to my Dell laptop (studio 1555).

I am planning to sell the 555 and  get a HD598 soon

and the next year I might well get either a HD650 or a grado, depending on how my taste develops

 

Will the sparrow suit my needs?

Thanks  ^_^

post #565 of 725

I am seriously considering purchasing one of these. Which one is the question though. Does anyone have the basic paired with some Grado's that can give me their impressions. I get that the 8742 chip in the A version is supposed to be better. That it's in a lot of higher end DACS. Getting the 24/96 USB in the A version has some merit too but all the music I listen to is pretty much ripped from CD so the 24/96 thing is not that big of a deal. My mindset is more mid fi than hi fi. Dont need to hear something dancing on the head of a pin, not my thing. But I do want something that synergizes well with MS2's

 

That may be the chip that's in the basic version as opposed to the 8742 in the A version.

 

Also that thread that wonders are Audio gd DAC's all that asks a legitimate question. Other than the love Audio gd products get here on head fi, there doesn't seem to be anything that corroborates that anywhere else. Google searches yield nothing

post #566 of 725
Quote:
Originally Posted by KneelJung View Post

I am seriously considering purchasing one of these. Which one is the question though. Does anyone have the basic paired with some Grado's that can give me their impressions. I get that the 8742 chip in the A version is supposed to be better. That it's in a lot of higher end DACS. Getting the 24/96 USB in the A version has some merit too but all the music I listen to is pretty much ripped from CD so the 24/96 thing is not that big of a deal. My mindset is more mid fi than hi fi. Dont need to hear something dancing on the head of a pin, not my thing. But I do want something that synergizes well with MS2's

 

That may be the chip that's in the basic version as opposed to the 8742 in the A version.

 

Also that thread that wonders are Audio gd DAC's all that asks a legitimate question. Other than the love Audio gd products get here on head fi, there doesn't seem to be anything that corroborates that anywhere else. Google searches yield nothing


 

From what you're saying, I'd just get the B and be done with it.  If you can run optical instead of usb, than go without the usb and save $20 more.  

 

There are very few people who have even heard both the A and the B to compare them, let alone having tested both with the MS2 headphone!

 

As for audio-gd not being written up anywhere, of course they're not - they don't pay American advertisers, like everyone else ;)  But seriously, people who know a lot about audio engineering have said again and again that their designs and specs look solid.  As to what specific dac/amp will sound best TO YOU, with YOUR headphones, that's something only you can say.

post #567 of 725

Just to chime in if people are wondering on the Sparrow's pre-amp ability.  Currently, I am using the sparrow as a dac+pre-amp for my Kicas and I have to say it sounds pretty good, no distortion at all.

post #568 of 725

If you're considering Sparrow for the MS2s, just be aware that your headphones are already very easily driven. Depending what you're using it for, there might be no noticeable benefit as they're high in efficiency and low impedance.  I have the MS1s and they show no noticable benefits with the Sparrow, only my low sensitivity AKG K240 and high ohm DT990s show improvement. I haven't used my MS1 very much since my DT990 are just better in every way to me, so don't take my word for it. It'll definitely give you an upgrade path if you ever decide to replace your MS2 for whatever reason anyways.

 

The best for the dollar is going to be the Sparrow "B" version with the WM8741 installed (request this upon order), it's only $15 more for the B version to be upgraded apparently.

post #569 of 725
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elanzer View Post

If you're considering Sparrow for the MS2s, just be aware that your headphones are already very easily driven. Depending what you're using it for, there might be no noticeable benefit as they're high in efficiency and low impedance.  I have the MS1s and they show no noticable benefits with the Sparrow, only my low sensitivity AKG K240 and high ohm DT990s show improvement. I haven't used my MS1 very much since my DT990 are just better in every way to me, so don't take my word for it. It'll definitely give you an upgrade path if you ever decide to replace your MS2 for whatever reason anyways.

 

The best for the dollar is going to be the Sparrow "B" version with the WM8741 installed (request this upon order), it's only $15 more for the B version to be upgraded apparently.


I decided to go with the A version. $258 shipped from Pacific Valve. According to the email I got from Kingwa the basic with the Woolfson shipped is $209 and the A version is $276 shipped including pay pal fee. Other than being $20 dollars cheaper Pacific Valve also offers 30 day return policy. Kingwa might also I dont know. But if the unit needs repairs I can also have those done by Pacific Valve. Hopefully the latter wont be necessary.

 

Ultimately I suppose the only way any of us can tell whether or not this stuff sounds good is to get it, plug it in, and hear what it sound like for ourselves. So I'll post some impressions when I get it.

post #570 of 725


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by KneelJung View Post

I decided to go with the A version. $258 shipped from Pacific Valve. According to the email I got from Kingwa the basic with the Woolfson shipped is $209 and the A version is $276 shipped including pay pal fee. Other than being $20 dollars cheaper Pacific Valve also offers 30 day return policy. Kingwa might also I dont know. But if the unit needs repairs I can also have those done by Pacific Valve. Hopefully the latter wont be necessary.

 

Ultimately I suppose the only way any of us can tell whether or not this stuff sounds good is to get it, plug it in, and hear what it sound like for ourselves. So I'll post some impressions when I get it.


Wow, I had no idea that Pacific Valve had it cheaper than direct from Audio-Gd.  It's with the new 8741 chip?  That's good for new buyers to know!

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphone Amps (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › Official Audio-gd Sparrow thread