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Asus Essence One Headphone Amp/DAC (CeBIT 2011) - Page 133

post #1981 of 3014

I hope you'll be able to take some pictures and post some specs of the new unit as well.
 

post #1982 of 3014

I'm trying to find a Quad Gang/4 Gang 10K Potentiometer Taper B, but can't seem to find anything with the right spacing and two grounds in rear that is found on the Essence One.

 

I don't think replacing is going to be a possiblity for me. mad.gif

 

Tim


Edited by cssarrow - 4/13/13 at 4:31pm
post #1983 of 3014
Quote:
Originally Posted by dynamics View Post

I hope you'll be able to take some pictures and post some specs of the new unit as well.
 

 

That I can do.

post #1984 of 3014
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenion View Post


Thank you for sharing your own impression about the two headphone amps/dacs Gandah!

Glad you like em both!

Gives me that warm fuzzy feeling to know that I did the right thing buying the E1 hehe... :D

Yeah absolutely Kenion, E1 is a great Dac combo for what you pay for, muses or not it's one of the best under 2k I feel. I'm sure there is better within the 2k bracket, like the V800 which I've yet to try, and the Conductor, but overall if someone had a budget of 2k the E1 makes the grade for SQ alone.

 

One thing I forgot to mention in my post, which I feel is noteworthy, the Fostex HP-A8C is one of few dac's that has toslink and coaxial digital out so you can daisy chain 2 dac's together for more refinement and also to use with a dac that may not have USB input, similar to how some high end users use a USB to Toslink transporter like the Audiophilleo 1

post #1985 of 3014

Hello Everyone!

 

Will have the Schiit Gungnir & Mjolnir tomorrow and to compare with the Essence One Muses.

 

After my review, i will be auctioning off my modded Essence One.

 

Comes with four fully assembled LME49710HA on adapters.

Upgraded PCI-Express Cable

Nichicon KA Audio Capacitors

ALL WIMA FKP Polypropylene Film Capacitors (2.5% Tolerance)

Mundorf 9.5% Silver Solder on nearly all joints.

6x MUSES01 Op-Amps

Upgraded Thermal Paste

Upgraded Custom Heatsink

RED LED LIGHTS!

 

Will go for the same price as the Essence One MUSES (excl. shipping/pp fee).

 

Tim


Edited by cssarrow - 4/16/13 at 3:14am
post #1986 of 3014
Quote:
Originally Posted by cssarrow View Post

Hello Everyone!

 

Will have the Schiit Gungnir & Mjolnir tomorrow and to compare with the Essence One Muses.

Nice one Tim, the Mjolnir amp is a power unit for the LCD3s or any planar magnetic headphone for that matter, drives them well. Have you re-terminate your HPs?


Edited by Gandah - 4/16/13 at 5:49am
post #1987 of 3014

After 4 weeks wait I got my Asus Essence One back, mine was DOA but it took some time since the company i bought it from have been very slow sorting it. Must say this is quite a step up from my STX card the music is so more fuller and such heavy bass. Got the normal edition might upgrade abit if I feel it is any need in the long run. As for channel imbelance there is none here, its balanced at low volume and up from headphone jack and xlr to the speakers.

 

I had a popping sound coming from the right channel every 10-20sec, it did only occure on USB connection. Had the latest firmware ad driver so I tried a different USB port from USB 2 ------> USB 3 and this sorted the issue.

 

Really happy for now, and to think this cost less than to import a magni/modi combo or odac/o2 is a joke. I would choose this package everyday over the 2 others. Many thanks to Asus for making a truly good product we actually can afford.

post #1988 of 3014
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gandah View Post

Nice one Tim, the Mjolnir amp is a power unit for the LCD3s or any planar magnetic headphone for that matter, drives them well. Have you re-terminate your HPs?

8W of power! muahaha!

 

I have to cut off my single end 1/4" off my 8 wire cable and re-terminate it with either one 4-pin or two 3 pins.

Probably going to go with a 4 pin route, as it's most likely lighter.

I wanted the Valab Rhodium ones, but they probably don't make those in 4 Pin.

Not many good looking 4 pin connectors...

 

Tim

post #1989 of 3014

Yeah 4 pin connector is easier to DIY with an existing cable. Two 3 pin connectors are harder and only look good if you are willing to re-sleeve the entire cable

post #1990 of 3014

Not to mention it's heavy and will put strain on the wire biggrin.gif

post #1991 of 3014
Quote:
Originally Posted by cssarrow View Post

Not to mention it's heavy and will put strain on the wire biggrin.gif


True

 

I love the look of ViaBlue connectors, it's unfortunate they only make 3 pin

post #1992 of 3014

So my friend finally got his Muses ONE, it's a real treat!

 

 

I should also state that I've been growing nasty habits with USB cables lately and the ONE still works perfectly fine after you break the 5V pin of the USB cable so don't expect miracles from USB PSU's for that matter, as none will ever occur(breaking the pin would also supposedly improve SQ from what SOTM are claiming).

 

So my friend got it last week and finally allowed me to play around with it while he's on vacation, so I could get to hear whether all the Muses hype was true(someone on another forum said that it'd kill AD797 to his ears).

All I can say compared to my Eximus DP1 is that deep bass is back with a vengeance! But I'll give you that the DP1 is pretty bass-shy to begin with(hence the "filter" megabass button on its front panel right under the phone output, reason why many people like to pair it with a beefy tube headamp). Also the SS shape is rather different, the DP1's strong asset is its "live sounding" SS when this Muses01 ONE really excels at mids, and the SS is really completely differently shaped.....I guess opamps rollers are well aware of how opamps can modify the SS perception and when the DP1 colors the SS by breaking it into many 3D layers, the Muses ONE makes it sound more like a "sphere" so to speak...it feels more "natural" but also less expansive.

Textured vocals(recorded with Neumann U87's for instance) really sound as true to life as it gets, I'm impressed to say the least.

BTW, the regular and Muses edition are using different pots(B10K>A10K) on the headamp: http://www.taiwanalpha.com.tw/english/p_e_70-1.htm

Of course, my friend's got the headamp gain switch: 

 

imagebam.com imagebam.com imagebam.com


With the gain set to high, my favorite 150Ω yamie ortho still sits at 9 O'clock just like with the regular ONE. OTOH, with the gain set to low, it's more like noon, quite a bunch of much required headroom indeed! Stereo tracking appears perfect to my ears(I guess that might also be part of the reason why they went A10K instead of B10K on the headamp).

Anyway, it seems rather clear that when the regular ONE felt a bit like unfinished business due to its entry level swappable opamps and high headamp gain, the Muses edition addresses both issues brilliantly and the 6moons review conclusion couldn't be more spot-on IMO as I can only agree that if you seek serious bang/bucks, the Muses ONE should seriously be considered.

You can surely get better sounding gear, but it'll cost ya. I would presume that entering the serious DAC market segment was quite a bet for Asus but the ONE has finally reached maturity to my ears.....I'll roll some opamps(OPA2132P for instance) in the headamp section and will provide additional feedback but getting this kind of performance out of the box under a grand is darn impressive happy_face1.gif

PS: after more critical listening, the center of the SS really feels as if the singers were standing in the room...and the texture of the mids is really worth all the Muses hype to my ears. Hi-res sounding and yet not too sterile/clinical sounding, yay /o/

OTOH, when the DP1 tends to make everything enjoyable the Muses ONE is rather unforgiving on subpar recordings....it will not hide defects in order to provide permanent euphonic enjoyment so you really have to polish your source files. To my ears, the Muses ONE sits nicely between the colored hifi DAC that makes everything dreamy sounding and the harsh monitoring DAC that was designed to make you hear the defects more than anything else....so you get a highly enjoyable reference DAC that neither hides the truth or tries to make defects more audible than they really should be(which become an asset when you realize that the average record has gone through hundreds of 5532/5534's).

I believe this reloaded ONE puts back into perspective the ridiculous amounts of money ppl can/have to spend on boutique DAC's, headamps, shaman blessed USB cables, battery based PSU's that all together can easily reach the $5K bar when the Muses ONE provides such high bang/bucks for quite a bit under a grand. I finally got to hear what my friend's enthusiasm was all about, and movies/70's female vocals are truly something on the latest offering from Asus indeed. IMHO You have to be seriously demanding/OCD'ed to turn down on what the Muses ONE has to offer, gg Asus cool.gif

The only thing I don't like is the bright LED's as I usually watch movies in a pitch black room but nothing some black masking tape can't fix wink_face.gif


Edited by leeperry - 4/18/13 at 4:28pm
post #1993 of 3014

Thank you leeperry for posting your impressions here.

It was a nice read! - "shaman blessed USB cables" made me laugh :D

 

But tell me... why didn't you mention me in your post?! As everyone can see, I was there with you, testing your gear and checking the cables! mad.gif^_^

 

Paint Tool -SAI- JPEG Encoder v1.00


Edited by Kenion - 4/17/13 at 5:14pm
post #1994 of 3014
Quote:
Originally Posted by leeperry View Post

.........

BTW, the regular and Muses edition are using different pots(B10K>A10K) on the headamp: http://www.taiwanalpha.com.tw/english/p_e_70-1.htm

.........


With the gain set to high, my favorite 150Ω yamie ortho still sits at 9 O'clock just like with the regular ONE. OTOH, with the gain set to low, it's more like noon, quite a bunch of much required headroom indeed! Stereo tracking appears perfect to my ears(I guess that might also be part of the reason why they went A10K instead of B10K on the headamp).

 

It seems that A10K has more logaritmic resistance function opposed to B10K linear function.

This gives better precision at lower volumes.

 

Thanks for review. I hope that Muses01 IC's will be my next upgrade.

post #1995 of 3014

Glad you liked it! I've polished it a bit and used it to write my first formal head-fi review, so it won't get lost in this big thread: http://www.head-fi.org/products/asus-xonar-essence-one-muses-edition/reviews/8824

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenion View Post

tell me... why didn't you mention me in your post?! As everyone can see, I was there with you, testing your gear and checking the cables! 


I've always been a big fan of your tune, ever since it got released.....I've even listened to it hundred more times than I would be willing to admit, hah.

 

And yeah, without you this review would have never been made possible so thanks again for all the logistical help tongue.gif

 


Edited by leeperry - 4/19/13 at 7:09am
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