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SR71B balanced INPUT?

post #1 of 45
Thread Starter 
First off, I'd like to say that using the search function here at head-fi is like finding a book that you don't know the author to in a huge public library without the computer. :|

I haven't really stumbled across many discussions about feeding the SR71B a balanced input signal during my extensive research in putting together a high-end portable LCD2 rig. So, I present you, the public, a couple questions, and I ask of you any information you might've come across that you can recall:


Does a balanced input signal improve the sound quality as drastically as the balanced output signal over SE?

What balanced DACs are out there other than the iBasso DB2 that is adequate?

Do you think it is worth spending the extra money on getting balanced input in your honest opinion? Why or why not?
Using an iDevice with a CLAS, I will not really be able to get high resolution files to play. Will this make a difference in your answer to the above question?



Also, one last unrelated question, or really a survey:

Do you think adding more interruptions in the signal (LCD cable with RSA plug -> RSA female to 1/8 male adapter) will noticeably affect the sound?





Thanks everyone!




GG
post #2 of 45

First of all, you are talking about a portable system and having balanced input will help. ?

 

Technically it should because balanced cables will reduce outside interference and hum you might pick up.  However, the real idea of going balanced cables is to help "long cables" to reduce the external noise.  Yes a long cable.

 

Most of your rig from DAC to Amp or source to Amp is what ? 2 to 4 inch LOD cables ? you will not need an input balanced cable for that, I don't believe it will return your investment.

 

However, you might want to invest money on upgrading your LCD2 cables to balanced cables.

Your SR71B balanced output uses 4 channels as oppose to 2 channels for SE output, it helps LCD2 bass and trebles.

 

Altho, I purchased ALO balanced cables for LCD2 I will not recommend you this cable because it's too stiff.  Go for the silver dragon cables.

 

hope this helps.

 

 

post #3 of 45

Well you are talking about my rig here.  Ipod/ipad/nano--CLAS--Coax SPDIF out--DB1--silver dragon balance out---SR71b--balance Crystal Piccolino to --JH13/HD800/LCD.

 

I have compared the DB1 and the DB2 carefully, DB2 is a touch better but is bigger in size.  Without critical listening, there is no difference.  But then you can only buy the DB2 from Ibasso now, the DB1 can only be found in FS forum.  

 

With regard to your question whether a balance DAC makes a difference? Yes, to me the balance DAC makes a big difference in several ways.  1. I felt it cleans up the sound. 2. I felt it opens up the sound stage.  3.  The balance DB2 is the only way to allow the signal to flow from your ipod fully balance to your amps (SR71b or PB2) and that is a real treat.  This is the only way you can realize the full potential of a balance amp like the SR71b or the PB2.

 

Ray Samuel at RSA was talking about building a portable matching balance DAC after the release of the SR71b.  However, I do not know the current status of that project.  Other than that, the Ibasso DB2 is your only option. 

 

I know many of you guys are waiting for the JH3A, but with this rig, I can use all my phones, it is very flexible as you can always remove the dac on those occasions when you want to slim down the combo.  I consider this portable combo has a SQ that can match many desktop rigs.  I have not heard the JH3a but I am very skeptic if the JH3a can beat this combo w/ full size phones like the LCD or HD800.

 

By the way, if you are going to use the SR71b and LCD, just terminate the LCD with the RSA SR71b connector.  This way you will have better sound, and easier to manage cable.  Canadian411 is right, the ALO cable is too still.  If and when you need to use the LCD in a SE situation, you can always get an adaptor or get a second cable as the LCD cable is detachable.

 

I will go the RMAF next month and compare my rig to the JH3a and hear it for my self.  I think the active crossover is a big plus but the pros with my rig is that I think I have a much better amp section than the JH3a (just my bias), I have the benefit of the balance signal through and through, and I can choose any high end phones to my liking.

 

By the way, I do have a Twag RSA female to 1/8 mini adaptor which I sometimes use on my JH13 to Pico Slim and I don't think there is too much detectable difference in SQ.  Although as a purist, I always want to have as little interruption as possible.  Hopes that help.  

 

One last thing, I just came back from a mini meet and met with the Kimber cable rep.  I am going to have them make me a silver Coax RCA to RCA (using their Illuminati D60 wire) that I use to connect the CLAS coax out to the DB1 coax in.  I think it will be very nice indeed.

 

 

 


Edited by Jalo - 9/14/11 at 11:43am
post #4 of 45
Thread Starter 
Quote:
I have not heard the JH3a but I am very skeptic if the JH3a can beat this combo w/ full size phones like the LCD or HD800.

I don't know about this one. I asked a couple people with the JH3A right now and it seems they reach for these over their fullsized cans.

I would get the DB2 but I think I will just wait for RSA's balanced DAC unless Ray Samuels himself gives me a clue that it wont be out for another year or so.

I'm still having trouble deciding to have two rigs or one, because I infact need the IEMs, and if I'm getting IEMs, why not get the best while at it and can afford it?

If I do go for the LCD2/SR71B combo, I'm still lost as to if I should use silver(Twag) or copper(Blue Dragon) for what I listen to. (I listen to mostly vocals and R&B, but occasionally dubstep, hiphop and pop.

Steve Eddy from Q audio told me to get the cable for LCD2 terminated in the Kobiconn iris (RSA) plug, so that's for sure.
post #5 of 45

GG, I just got off the phone with Ray and he told me that he was hoping to put the balance dac together by Christmas.  It will have the same form factor as the SR71b.  He got derailed by the DarkStar project.  I wish you could hear my rig with JH13, it sounds very nice, it's not just for fullsize cans.  With regard to cable, one thing I learn is that I hate stiff cable now.  I just like soft and flexible cable.  I know Stefan audio cables and Twag cable are pretty soft.  I question if Silver Dragon is as soft.  I don't have experience with Q audio cable.

post #6 of 45
Thread Starter 
Thank you for your help. I guess I'll put off the balanced input until then.

Now as for the interconnects, silver or copper? hmmm.....

What I listen to most (most frequent to less frequent):

1. Vocal
2. R&B
3. Dubstep
4. Pop
5. Hip Hop
6. Classical
post #7 of 45

If I were you, I'll send a pm to Parrot and have him make you a short 3 to 4 inches Piccolino interconnect.  That cable has the best of both silver and copper.  I know he has some extra crystal wire.  That cable is also very good with vocal, so very smooth.

post #8 of 45
Thread Starter 
He doesn't like me very much. I'll look into piccolo more.
post #9 of 45

Piccolo is a very stiff wire and I don't really think he dislike you.  He is sometimes a little blunt on the forum but that is just him. Don't take it personal.

post #10 of 45
Thread Starter 
piccolino* iPad autocorrect -_-
post #11 of 45

piccolino (or any coaxial cable) is not really the best for balanced IC unless you double up. its designed to carry a single signal and its return, NOT 2 opposing phases of a signal


Edited by qusp - 9/15/11 at 12:50am
post #12 of 45
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by qusp View Post

piccolino (or any coaxial cable) is not really the best for balanced IC unless you double up. its designed to carry a single signal and its return, NOT 2 opposing phases of a signal


You lost me...
post #13 of 45

haha parrots, do some reading, it does NOT work perfectly, it 'works' because it has 4 conductors, that is all. coax (unless you use it as a shielded single conductor) is not designed for balanced audio, it is designed for single ended signals, everything about it is wrong, the impedances are imbalanced, the wires are not equally exposed to any noise and thus the whole point of using balanced gear, common mode error correction/rejection cannot work properly. 


Edited by qusp - 9/15/11 at 8:11am
post #14 of 45

bare in mind my comment is not the wire, but its use, use 4 strands (2 per channel, 1 per phase) and use the shields as...well a shield and its pretty much perfect again. balanced audio relies on a symmetric system thus the name

 

for example the crystal cables ultra

 

1xlr.jpg


Edited by qusp - 9/15/11 at 8:02am
post #15 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by qusp View Post

piccolino (or any coaxial cable) is not really the best for balanced IC unless you double up. its designed to carry a single signal and its return, NOT 2 opposing phases of a signal


Qusp, you are right about the coaxial transmission and in this case as you said my balance Crystal cable is double up.

 


Edited by Jalo - 9/15/11 at 10:56am
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