I just found out about the E1 and started following this thread. Im still in the process of reading all the prior posts, but I found out Newegg was selling open box Muses Editions so I ordered one last night on impulse.
Just started reading about the various "problems" that have cropped up and am admittedly a little concerned about quality. Can someone correct me if I'm wrong, but here's my understanding of the issues:
1. Early Muses Ed units do not have gain jumper (used standard board, not Muses board) and have inferior B10K volume pot.
2. Channel imbalance (speaker volume only?). Possibly corrected with the "true" Muses Ed with gain jumper and different PCB (A10K volume pot).
3. Front panel buttons and knobs are plastic and not high quality. Can break or be noisy/grindy.
4. Requires firmware/software update periodically (not an issue IMO, but a consideration before use)
5. May be missing accessories and have small cosmetic defects (per NewEgg open box disclaimer - not an Asus issue)
It was significantly discounted from new (and available, since new ones are out of stock) and NewEgg offers a 30 day refund, so I figured it was worth the risk. Ive tried numerous DACs/amps over the years and am excited to see if the Asus does for me what others haven't. So far, the "higher end" units I've tried are the Benchmark DAC1 (too bright/hard/analytical) and Violectric V200 (neutral - no different than my current AVR). Neither one impressed me. Most others I've tried and/or owned (Burson HA-160D, Woo Audio WA7, Violectric V90, Schiit Asgard, Peachtree Nova) were basically the same as the V200 and left me feeling "Meh."
Some additional questions/concerns:
I'll be using my E1 fed by my Squeezebox Touch via TOSLINK or S/PDIF to my HD 800's. Since I'm not using USB (or a computer directly), can I assume that I dont need to worry about firmeware updates?
Im not sure I understand how different gain settings affect the sound signature of the amp (headphones). Given the same listening volume, shouldn't gain only affect noise floor and volume control position, or is it somehow changing the output voltage/current?
Edited by palmfish - 6/27/13 at 7:26am