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Reconfiguring my portable rig - Random updates on the journey - Page 9

post #121 of 205

Does it have a line out to it's DAC? I really have no need for an amp/DAC combo although this does look quite tempting. Having my doubts this will compete with my Triad L3.

post #122 of 205
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Armaegis View Post

Good or bad, you're gonna wind up blaming me huh? cool.gif

DUH! As an old friend once said - "when things start going wrong, I start looking around for someone to blame..."

Seriously, whatever I end up doing, it will be my doing. Doesn't mean I won't tease you a bit either way though!

Oh, and balanced XLR's on the hifi m8? Seems like they will take up valuable battery space. I'm just not likely reterminate my cans.
post #123 of 205
Thread Starter 

armaegis - looks like you are off the hook!


I found a trade deal - DT770-600's plus cash for a Pico Dac/Amp - I had one in the past and miss it.  I think it will be a fine match for the Mad Dogs.  It has twice the power of the Pico Slim, which drives the Mad Dogs just fine.  Now I've got a dac/amp again for the laptop.


I also purchased a UD100 dac from Stoner Acoustics -




A Sabre 9023 dac on a tiny PC board, with a USB plug and 1/8" jack, covered in heat shrink for $52.  Definitely an impulse/curiosity purchase.


Last - if you are looking for a dacport, FullCompass has them for $299. with a note to "Call for sale price."  Tempting...  I liked my dacport.


Now I don't have to start saving cash for the hifi m8 - I was seriously considering it, save for the 3 pin xlr jacks - I just don't get that...

post #124 of 205

Oh nice! I've always been kinda curious about the Pico as I've heard the Slim and thought it was quite good but could use more power for the bigger cans. 


No interest in a Dacport at the moment. Had one and sold it... I've got far too many usb dacs at the moment (a D10, e10, VRMbox, DacDestroyer, NI Traktor 2). Buying US retail really sucks for us Canadian anyways, what with the shipping and taxes and stuff. 

post #125 of 205
Thread Starter 

The postman just delivered the Pico that I received in trade for my DT 770-600's plus a bit of cash on my end.  I gave it a quick listen just to be sure it is working.


It works great, Mad Dogs are fine on low gain, it does appear to sound better than the Pico Slim, though I cheated and used my laptop into the dac instead of iPod Touch 4G to line in.  I'll do the proper comparison with same source soon enough.  I suspect there will be little audible difference between the Pico and Pico Slim with the Mad Dogs and Touch.


I'll have to re-try my 1964 Ears quads with the Pico.  If that works, I could offload the slim.  I suspect I'll have the usual channel imbalance/hiss/not enough volume control sensitivity at low volume that I have with everything but the pico slim.

Edited by aamefford - 10/18/12 at 11:43am
post #126 of 205

So how long do you think it'll be before upgrade-itis strikes again? biggrin.gif

post #127 of 205
Thread Starter 
Oh, not long I'm sure. I think I just like to buy and sell gear when you get down to it.
post #128 of 205

It's always nice to get new-toys. The best part though if finding the toys you cannot part with :).

post #129 of 205
Thread Starter 

I'm on my second Pico Dac/Amp - so I obviously like that piece of kit.  I can't seem to justify getting rid of the Pico Slim, at least yet - I haven't found a better amp for sensitive iem's.  My iem head-time has dropped way, way off, though.  I just don't have time to have what are effectively custom fit ear plugs that play music stuffed in my ears.  At work, headphones are much more convenient.  I rarely listen at home any more it is either the speaker rig or my daughter's cartoons....   The iem's are reduced to travel use, and I don't travel all that much.  As well as the Mad Dogs isolate, I could travel with them, though they are kinda big.


A couple more notes on the Picos - I finally gave a bit of time to the big Pico with my touch 4G (ALAC files).  It is a bit better than the slim, maybe.  Overall, the Pico Slim does a fine job with the Mad Dogs, though.  The big pico is not enough better to need to carry it with the touch for a portable mad-dog rig.  That said, the Pico used as a dac / amp from the laptop with lossless files is MUCH better, so the Pico still fills the main need I bought it for.  So would a DacPort, though, since it seems the Mad Dogs do not benefit so much from the added power with the touch 4G.

Edited by aamefford - 10/19/12 at 8:10am
post #130 of 205

I'm curious to see impressions of the Pico Power when it's released. And I think Justin is working on a companion dac to it as well. 

post #131 of 205
Thread Starter 

I am interested in the Pico Power.  Supposedly 16 V swing, twice the power of the Pico, 4 times the power of the Pico Slim.


I love Justin's products - They are well conceived, very fine build quality, they drip cool from them when you look at them, and they work and sound excellent.


I hate waiting for Justin's stuff!  I buy it used, just because I hate waiting for pre-orders or for his build times.  Add on mediocre communication skills, and it is just frustrating to buy his stuff new.  I do get it - he is an army of one, and a perfectionist, which is why his stuff is so good.  I am a fan, I have a Pico Slim, and I'm working on my second Pico Dac / Amp now, but I bought all of them used - I did spend an inordinate amount of time on the Pico Slim pre-order and finally bailed.


If I ever get a pair of the up-end orthos or something else harder to drive, I may have to own a Pico Power as well.  Probably be a while, though.

post #132 of 205

I'll sell ya my HE-6 when you're ready tongue.gif

post #133 of 205
Thread Starter 

I just tried my 1964 Ears Quads with the Pico Amp / Dac.  It went as I expected.  Zero volume to too loud in a pretty small range maybe 7 to 10 degrees rotation, channel imbalance audible at (very) low listening volume, which doesn't resolve until comfortable to too loud for me.  My usual gripes.  No slam against the Pico Dac / Amp.  The quads are really sensitive / efficient.  Also note that I did not hear any hiss, which is impressive - I get hiss with everything but the Pico Slim with the quads.  I guess I gotta keep the Pico Slim.  I'm closing in on having that thing longer than anything head-fi related I've owned.  I have not yet found anything better for iems.  I just don't see the hifi-m8 competing as far as sensitive iem's are concerned - I am really curious to see.

post #134 of 205

I think you really just need something with selectable gain.

post #135 of 205
Originally Posted by Armaegis View Post

I think you really just need something with selectable gain.



So far the only amps that have done it for me wtihout having to use a program to attenuate the sound (asio bit for bit is best ;) would be the UHA4 and Triad L3. Surpriginly the Triads volume pot is superb even down to minimal settings.

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