It's so Qute! The lighting is a little excessive though imo. Any DACs I've heard using the PCM2704 have sounded like garbage. I guess you can't expect much though for that price, but it could work well for a basic office rig if you use another DAC with it.
x4 on that
I told myself no more audio gear that was not O2 related for the rest of this year and here I am eyeballing this little dac/amp. But if Mochan's review (and I look forward to it and my wallet quivers in dread) gives back positive results I might be willing to try it out. I'm curious how it'd compare with the ibasso D4 I'm using as a dac with the gilmore lite for my work rig.
Ah too bad I don't have a Mamba. I will give some impressions first when I get it, and then arrange for a meet with my buddies (one of them has a Mamba) so if that happens I'll be sure to let you know how it compares to the Mamba directly. I can still remember what the Mamba sounds like but doing comparisons from memory is never optimal.
My expectations though are that it will not sound anywhere near as good as the Mamba as a DAC, but I am expecting its amp section to trounce the Mamba. But if you were to use a Mamba as DAC and line out to the Q that would probably be really, really good. :D
I bought one from this seller. Received it today. Good communications, very fast delivery (only 4 days from China to the Netherlands EU with DHL). power supply 220V had a seperate US mains lead - no problem replacing with an EU mainland one. short 1m USB-A to mini USB and 1/8" mini Jack to mini Jack (gold plated) cables were included.
I don't think this seller is an authorized dealer for LD, So no support/warrantee from LD can be expected. Seller does accept return shipment however.
+ Great sounding tube amp
+ Nice looking in it's acrylic case with brass top-ring and light from orange filament, blue-lit plates, and red LED in the bottom plate of the acrylic case.
- VERY sensitive to external electric fields noise (keep away from WiFi equipment and wireless DECT phones/base stations/ noisy cell phones)
- All documentation is in Chinese :(
- DAC is WAY too feeble sounding. Completely useless as it is.
- Very bad design for power connector on the Q (a mini 6-pin like a small version of the ones seen on graphics cards). The shrink-sleeve on the connector was badly applied. The length of the cable is too short too. Again about 1m, and can not be disconnected from the heavy power brick.
- Tube sticks out above the case and is soldered to the circuit board.
Still a very good price for a tube pre/headphone amp. It sounds extremely even from (very) low to (very high frequencies GREAT amp for listening Dave Matthews band e.g.
Just use as an amp and you will be happy.
There is a version 2 coming with improved DAC functionality it says on Littledot.net
Sweet sounding tube amp. Listened with AKG K172 driven by iAudio O2 and ASRock Atom ION 330.
I am still very happy with my purchase. I plan to hook it up to a Trends Audio TA-10.2SE Class T power amp to drive my KEF 303 series II matched-pair speakers. (Any thoughts on that?)
it's on ebay:
I agree kboe. LD should just drop the DAC, maybe improve the power connection to the Q (the current 6-pin connector looks bad and is hard to insert/remove) and add some decent rubber feet (it's standing on 3 screw heads now. It is great value for money as a tube amp only as it is now anyway. I only own it for a few days, but I do not want to miss it anymore. :) Maybe they should also replace the acrylic tube with an aluminium one to improve EM shielding. You could keep the bottom Acrylic plate for the cute red light (did I buy it for the lights? no. definitely not).
No, can't change the tube unless you put a soldering iron to it.
Version 2 is still underway. Who knows, maybe LD might change a bit more than the DAC.
Anyway, what can one expect for this money. It is a really great tube amp. It would be a fabulous buy once the DAC produes enough volume. I think I will buy another one from LD directly once version 2 is released. It would be a great update for my ASRock Atom 330 ION media center.
This one already is next to perfect as an amp behind my Cowon iAudio O2 potable Media Player.
And if the tube dies, o well, just buy another. :)