Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Dedicated Source Components › Review : AUDINST HUD-MX1 DAC/amp - a promising newcomer (compared to Audio-gd FUN, AMB Gamma2)
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Review : AUDINST HUD-MX1 DAC/amp - a promising newcomer (compared to Audio-gd FUN, AMB Gamma2) - Page 2

post #16 of 410
Very Good Follow up to your review. I was considering the FUN, but think I will hold off for now.
post #17 of 410
Thread Starter 
The Audio-gd Fun does not belong to me, so can't make any tweaks to it.
The unit is version A with OPA Earth (the owner also bought OPA Moon and uses that as standard).
post #18 of 410
Thanks for the review!
post #19 of 410
When I posted before, you hadn't posted your review, so I just wanted to say, great stuff! It would be interesting to have your impressions OPAMP-rolling in the Fun too. Something I reckon would be worth doing is putting the same OPAMPs in both and then comparing them as DACs. You might also try using the Fun as a DAC from the pre-amp output too. Your thoughts concur with mine on the Fun A, that it's probably as good as a unit as you're going to get for the money, considering it has the compromises of a combined unit, but will naturally be bested by dedicated "mid-range" units.
post #20 of 410
Thread Starter 
Thank you !

@ Currawong
Using the Pre-outs would have been better from what you say and what the other owners mentioned. I've just read that, I didn't know.
There are indeed many many options to adjust/tailor/improve/extend the sound and functionality of the FUN.
It's one of its' greatest qualities but it can get confusing at times

In my review I used the DAC-out and matched the volume through Audinst's pot.
Anyway the main focus was to compare the units as standalone DAC/amps.
post #21 of 410
audiofil, great updates! Thanks for spending the time on posting the review. I know it isn't always fun to type everything up in such a coherent manner, but your post is still very readable and clear. Good work!
post #22 of 410
Great review. It could be interesting even more if Fun would have same wolfson dac section. I am curious about that comparison now.
By the way, which one is best with stock power source? I think fun must be superior in that condition. Isn't it?
post #23 of 410
It is a very good review, Well done!

I was not sure if I should get the HUD-MX 1 (I am on a tight budget of about 200$ for a DAC/Headamp) but this review is getting me that closer to get it.

My wallet is crying already...
post #24 of 410
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by project86 View Post
audiofil, great updates! Thanks for spending the time on posting the review. I know it isn't always fun to type everything up in such a coherent manner, but your post is still very readable and clear. Good work!
Thank you! It is indeed difficult keeping it clear and easy to follow each time I update the review.
In this respect feedback is a blessing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ulyses View Post
Great review. It could be interesting even more if Fun would have same wolfson dac section. I am curious about that comparison now.
By the way, which one is best with stock power source? I think fun must be superior in that condition. Isn't it?
The FUN's Wolfson DAC option is said to be slightly inferior and more veiled than AD1852 (which I reviewed). I doubt I'll ever have the chance of listening to that option any time soon.

Not sure what you mean about stock power source.
The FUN's PSU is built in, so I assume you didn't mean that.

Audinst on the other hand present 3 different options for power: USB, stock wallwart PSU or a whatever 12-15V the user might want to use.

For the comparison I've used a TREAD linear regulated power supply, which is much better than stock. It does sound better than either USB or the walwart PSU (which I didn't like).
The gap between the FUN and Audinst does grow bigger with stock power. Given the fact that a linear regulated PSU is relatively cheap to get or build (25-50$), the total cost is still significantly bellow the FUN's price.
This was the main factor in my decision of putting them against each other at the best of their abilities.

All this will go into the rest of the review with detailed description for everything.
Unfortunately I'm not doing so well with time so updates will come at a slower pace. My job will keep me away from it for the next couple of weeks so please bear with me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Icewyng View Post
It is a very good review, Well done!

I was not sure if I should get the HUD-MX 1 (I am on a tight budget of about 200$ for a DAC/Headamp) but this review is getting me that closer to get it.
My wallet is crying already...
You won't regret buying it. Depending on what you're using now, the MX1 will be either a nice step up or a revelation.
It also provides the option of swapping opamps, so it's even friendlier to match with your headphones.
post #25 of 410
Quote:
Originally Posted by audiofil View Post
You won't regret buying it. Depending on what you're using now, the MX1 will be either a nice step up or a revelation.
It also provides the option of swapping opamps, so it's even friendlier to match with your headphones.
I am using Grados SR-80 HP for now but I plan to move up the line in the near future. Since I am using the onboard audio from my motherboard, I am sure the improvement should be a pretty big step up.

Any suggestions as for what opamps I could use?
post #26 of 410
Quote:
Originally Posted by audiofil View Post
The gap between the FUN and Audinst does grow bigger with stock power. Given the fact that a linear regulated PSU is relatively cheap to get or build (25-50$), the total cost is still significantly bellow the FUN's price.
This was the main factor in my decision of putting them against each other at the best of their abilities.
This is a very good point you've mentioned. People don't realise that it's the power supply that makes the DAC, in a manner of speaking, more so than the DAC chip itself. Though since you mention it, I found the WM8740 inferior to the AD1852 in the Fun. The Wolfson has a rolled-off treble for starters. What is more, if you look at the spec sheets for both, the AD1852 has much better measurements, with something like a -120dB S/N ratio, where the Wolfson is only around -90dB. The whole "Wolfson are better" thing was started, from what I can see, when Apple switched to Cirrus in the iPods.

Anyway, sorry for the slight O/T but I thought it worth mentioning.
post #27 of 410
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Icewyng View Post
I am using Grados SR-80 HP for now but I plan to move up the line in the near future. Since I am using the onboard audio from my motherboard, I am sure the improvement should be a pretty big step up.

Any suggestions as for what opamps I could use?
Indeed, it will be a nice improvement.
As for opamps I've wrote a few words on them in my review.
First and foremost thing to consider: the stock - LME49860, is a top-spec
opamp. You might be pleased with it as is.
The only opamp I've tried that brought quite pleasing improvements was AD797BRZ and I can recommend that.
You'll need 2 of them and a Browndog adapter (dual SOIC to DIP).
post #28 of 410
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post
This is a very good point you've mentioned. People don't realise that it's the power supply that makes the DAC, in a manner of speaking, more so than the DAC chip itself. Though since you mention it, I found the WM8740 inferior to the AD1852 in the Fun. The Wolfson has a rolled-off treble for starters. What is more, if you look at the spec sheets for both, the AD1852 has much better measurements, with something like a -120dB S/N ratio, where the Wolfson is only around -90dB. The whole "Wolfson are better" thing was started, from what I can see, when Apple switched to Cirrus in the iPods.

Anyway, sorry for the slight O/T but I thought it worth mentioning.
PSU plays a significant role in a circuit. The better the power, the better the signal. Absolutely!

As I've already mentioned I cannot speak from experience about WM8740 vs AD1852 modules in the FUN.
Spec-wise the Wolfson is actually superior 120db vs 114db SNR, but as we both know this doesn't mean a thing.

I have heard several DACs and CD-players based on WM8740 with quite a lively and upfront presentation. So I guess it's not really a rule that WM are, by nature, softer sounding DACs.

Another thing worth considering for Audio-gd FUN:
AD1852 in a current output DAC using the entire circuitry of the fun (I/V conversion, LPF, ACSS modules, etc).

WM8740 on the other hand is a V-OUT chip with LPF built in, not requiring I/V conversion and low pass filtering.

I think this feature alone is responsible for major differences between the sound of the two modules as each uses different circuitry, and should account for distinct sound signatures.
post #29 of 410
Argh, the FUN has a basic version now at 190$+shipping... (no usb on it if i read correctly)

that puts it smack in play for me against this one.
post #30 of 410
Quote:
Originally Posted by audiofil View Post
First and foremost thing to consider: the stock - LME49860, is a top-spec
opamp. You might be pleased with it as is.
The only opamp I've tried that brought quite pleasing improvements was AD797BRZ and I can recommend that.
You'll need 2 of them and a Browndog adapter (dual SOIC to DIP).
I will make sure to check them out. Any others that you might want to try in the future?

So, I have decided to go ahead and buy the HUD-MX1. I see you mentioned using a linear regulated PSU. Which one did you buy?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Dedicated Source Components
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Dedicated Source Components › Review : AUDINST HUD-MX1 DAC/amp - a promising newcomer (compared to Audio-gd FUN, AMB Gamma2)