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VentureCraft Go-Dap GD-04 for iPhone 4 - Page 8

post #106 of 161

This is a late reply, I'm sorry.

 

As to quality, I think you have qualify what quality means. If it means being closest to the actual waveform and reference level, then no, the GoDAP isn't even close. But, it adds more power and has a pleasant roll off like a NOS DAC that makes certain sharp headphones/speakers sound more mellow, laid back. As a reference, it really does fall flat, but I can't imagine that is what Venturecraft were going for. This DAC/amp is pleasant, not perfect.

 

I'm sorry I'm late with this.

 

The iPhone has a pretty damn good output system, but it is reference aimed, meaning it will be sharp and as flat as possible. If you have a newer iPhone, like iPhone 4S, you will find that it has enough headroom to drive low Ω balance armature phones perfectly. But, it will retain that pristine reference sound. The GoDAP honestly doesn't retain resolution as well as the iPhone does, but it is warmer. Some might call it more involved.

 

It has a quality all its own, but it isn't the quality defined as 'better'.

Quote:
Originally Posted by brumma View Post

AnakChan & shigzeo, do you guys think that the audio quality is enough of an improvement over the built-in headphone out of the iPhone 4 to warrant a purchase for use as an amp only?  In other words, is it worth it if I never plan to use the optical out?  My headphones and IEMs are pretty easy to drive, and I only rarely plug my iPhone into the stereo.

post #107 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

I think if you're sensitive to sibilance, I think it's better controlled by the choice of headphones rather than by the OpAmps. At least in the Go-DAP implementation of various OpAmps, the changes are slight in comparison to the headphones. I'm not familiar with most of the headphones you have but have heard the B&W P5 (which to me are dark for my tastes). Whether you're opting the base Go-DAP 8820E vs say the AD8397 or OPA1612, the treble extensions of the latter OpAmp isn't going to make the B&W P5 dramatically sibilant. You'll hear the differences but more subtly.

 

I agree that the choice of headphones is more of a variable, and I also consider the B&W too dark.  I really need to boost up the treble and deep bass quite a bit, while lowering the mid base. The base still sounds a bit too loose on the P5 for my taste.  The Audio Technicas do a much better job of controlling the bass.  I keep the mid-range relatively flat for both the P5 and ESW9.  That being said, any additional advice on which opamp to order?  I wonder if I should just go with the base OPA2134 version (since I am really new to this), and figure out what I like as I go along.  If I am unsatisfied, then I can always upgrade later.  Besides, $365 is a lot easier to swallow right now than $600-ish.  (Gotta pay the bills, and the car is due for a service.)

 

I just noticed that my location is not listed on my profile--I am located in the States.  Is it even possible to order the upgrades and have them delivered here?

post #108 of 161
The upgrades are possible later on. As you probably read in my posts back in Jan, I upgraded both my Muses 8820E & Burr Brown OPA2134 to the OP-275 & AD8397.

Your problem will be when you want to upgrade later you'll have to ship it back to Japan for it to be done. But, naturally it is possible.
post #109 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

The upgrades are possible later on. As you probably read in my posts back in Jan, I upgraded both my Muses 8820E & Burr Brown OPA2134 to the OP-275 & AD8397.
Your problem will be when you want to upgrade later you'll have to ship it back to Japan for it to be done. But, naturally it is possible.

 

Yes, I did read that.  What sparked your interest in pursuing the upgrades?  Were you unsatisfied with the sound of the original, or was it just curiosity to try something different?

 

Shipping it back to Japan isn't really a problem.  I'm more worried about ordering something I may not like because I don't have a clue about what I'm doing. rolleyes.gif


Edited by brumma - 5/23/12 at 8:32pm
post #110 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by brumma View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

The upgrades are possible later on. As you probably read in my posts back in Jan, I upgraded both my Muses 8820E & Burr Brown OPA2134 to the OP-275 & AD8397.
Your problem will be when you want to upgrade later you'll have to ship it back to Japan for it to be done. But, naturally it is possible.

 

Yes, I did read that.  What sparked your interest in pursuing the upgrades?  Were you unsatisfied with the sound of the original, or was it just curiosity to try something different?

 

Shipping it back to Japan isn't really a problem.  I'm more worried about ordering something I may not like because I don't have a clue about what I'm doing. rolleyes.gif

Curiosity did it for me. I was basically learning about OpAmps then (am still now)...

e.g. Something I learnt from the folks on the industry, most makers actually scratch off the surface of the OpAmps so that when you open it up, you actually have no idea what you're getting (nor how expensive or cheap it is).
post #111 of 161

Regarding OPAMP price, off the top of my head, pretty much the only expensive common ones are the OPA627, OPA2134 and LT1364.  The newer 49710 (single) and 49720 dual are supposed to be essentially the same as the 1364, but are much cheaper. I haven't checked lately what the newer ones cost, but straight from the manufacturer or one of the big electronic parts distributors almost all OPAMPs cost very little. It's also trivially easy to figure out what OPAMP is being used even if the markings have been removed.

post #112 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by brumma View Post

I was searching around for any reviews of the Go-DAP 4.0 and stumbled across this:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gVvmYK0XueM

 

I am a little surprised by his conclusions since I've heard nothing but good feedback for the unit here at head-fi.  Of course, I have never heard of this guy either, so I have no idea if he is credible.  Would anyone care to comment?

I own the GoDap 4.0.   It works great.   I have it running a Sennheiser HD-800, which are very difficult to drive, and it does the job with them very good.   I do not agree with the reviewer that the sound is not good because of thin bass.   It's a pitty that a review like this could prevent you to experience a good amplifier for the size.    I have had no problem with the battery because I almost never use the setting in which the amp battery recharges the iPhone battery.    I only use this setting when my iPhone has less than 10% charge, and its not often.   Read reviews somewhere else.

post #113 of 161

Kinda TL;DR since I'm late to join the iPhone 4S party....apologies!  tongue.gif

 

Anyway, with the discontinuation of the Alesis AmpCase, am I right to say that the Go-DAP is pretty much the only reasonably portable option left on the market? If so, what is the ultimate/recommended configuration to go for in terms of speccing it? Trying to look for a balanced, neutral sound here.

 

Also, anyone care to explain how would one handle the issue of answering phone calls on the Go-DAP 4?

 

(I know the sound on the Fostex and the CLAS stack would be brilliant, but there is absolutely no way I can afford losing my phone and/or audio stack every week. Phone crime here is still way too high.)

 

If there are other high-end options, would anyone be so kind as to list them out? We'll cap the budget at the HP-P1's level for now and I intend to use only IEMs with them (probably mic-ed). Cheers! :D

post #114 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by 9VARZ View Post

Kinda TL;DR since I'm late to join the iPhone 4S party....apologies!  tongue.gif

 

Anyway, with the discontinuation of the Alesis AmpCase, am I right to say that the Go-DAP is pretty much the only reasonably portable option left on the market? If so, what is the ultimate/recommended configuration to go for in terms of speccing it? Trying to look for a balanced, neutral sound here.

 

Also, anyone care to explain how would one handle the issue of answering phone calls on the Go-DAP 4?

 

(I know the sound on the Fostex and the CLAS stack would be brilliant, but there is absolutely no way I can afford losing my phone and/or audio stack every week. Phone crime here is still way too high.)

 

If there are other high-end options, would anyone be so kind as to list them out? We'll cap the budget at the HP-P1's level for now and I intend to use only IEMs with them (probably mic-ed). Cheers! :D

 

When you say "reasonable portable option left", I guess you mean integrated? If so then yes. There are other portable solutions too with some high quality SQ however there'll be some compromises in other forms. e.g. quite recently the iBasso DX100 has been quite a hit (not exactly at HP-P1 prices though) and it's SQ is superb, however its UI is slow and clunky (so you can't treat it like a jukebox with all your songs as it takes a long time to index them -everytime- you powercycle or update the microSD card). And you'll be carrying two devices - the DX100 DAP & your phone.

 

The Sony NW-Z series is also quite a nice sounding DAP but it's memory capped with no room for expansion (same as the iPhone too I guess). Again carrying two devices, your phone and the DAP (but slimmer and cheaper than the DX100 at least).

 

And you've already ruled out multi-component stacks for aforementioned reasons.

 

So the Go-DAP 4.0 is probably the most integrated nice sounding SQ unit I personally can think of for now in the market. My personal preference of the OpAmp is the AD8397 but I don't know if VentureCraft has anymore of those. There other popular one is the OPA1612, and more recently VentureCraft has added AD8066 to their OpAmp option suite (but I've not listened to them yet).

post #115 of 161

Interesting stuff, AnakChan! Arigatou!

 

Yes, I'm trying to look for something as integrated as possible.

 

I've had the iPhone 2 with the FiiO E7 and my experience with that setup was so bad, I simply removed the E7 from the equation within 2 weeks of (mis)use. I was missing too many incoming calls, the audio wasn't *that* fantastic compared to the TRRS output (since I still didn't bypass the iPhone's DAC), yada-yada.

 

Unfortunately, I don't think I'll be looking for a DAP because I technically could get myself an iPod Classic, "stack" it with a HP-P1 and still use it reasonably discreetly. Also, using a DAP would effectively render my iPhone into another touch-UI brick that I'd loved to hate (since I'm the sort that don't put more than a handful of apps on the phone). Also, I have a niggling suspicion that I would end up missing even more critical calls and texts yet again if I venture down that path. :P

 

I've just came across the V-Moda VAMP which looks like a re-badged Go-DAP. I wonder if I should bother with that too... Hmmm.....

post #116 of 161

The VAmp is a customised Go-DAP - with the OPA1612 OpAmp & 2200mAh battery. It also has further it's own "custom tuning" with the VTune as opposed to Go-DAP's ASR (Acoustic Sound Retriever).

post #117 of 161

Noted.

 

So effectively, I'm back to square one in terms of options.  (;¬д¬)

 

Come to think of it, the DX100 may not be a bad option if it weren't for the fact that it's sold out. 

 

Decisions, decisions.......

 

And rumours of the impending iPhone 5 really isn't helping matters a bit! XD

post #118 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

The VAmp is a customised Go-DAP - with the OPA1612 OpAmp & 2200mAh battery. It also has further it's own "custom tuning" with the VTune as opposed to Go-DAP's ASR (Acoustic Sound Retriever).

 

Any word on price?  I'm waiting for info so I can decide between the Vamp and the Go-DAP.  Do you have any other details?

post #119 of 161

Venturecraft have tailored the sound of the GoDap to be warm and very smooth with a tightening of the upper bass. It is taught and very nice to listen to, but it isn't a reference flat sound. I haven't heard the iBasso, but have the C4, the Hifiman options, etc. In some ways, the GoDap is a slightly more taut, well defined Hifiman sound, but with more background noise. If you like the gradual roll off in the high frequencies of the Hifiman, then the GoDap is excellent.

 

Couple that with gapless playback, playback of all industry standards and of FLAC with apps like Equaliser Pro, and you have in one unit the most complete portable music listening environment you can get your hands on. The Dx100 won't playback music as well as the iPhone/GoDap no matter the hardware. It may have higher fidelity internal components though, but that is a bag of bones without the software to deliver flawless playback through a transport.

post #120 of 161
I don't see that this has been covered anywhere, but I may have overlooked it... Do any of the built-in headphone cable remotes work with the Go-DAP's headphone out? I assume volume control wouldn't, but what play controls? Just curious.
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