Originally Posted by Dsnuts
The FP and the MX2 in the dac section I don't feel are too different in sound. It is both of their amp section that makes a big difference. I threw in a dual opa LT1028 in the fire phoenix that gives a real nice dimensionality to it. It expands the sound of the CS498.
Seems to me the dac end of the MX2 using the PCM1796 is a newer version of the PCM1794 which is a nice standard DAC chip. . It has a very nice clean sound to it much like the CS4398 chips I can confirm the DAC in my ME is superior out of all my units. But it is more the OPA2227 and OPA2134 used in the amp portion that acts kinda like the LT1028 does for my FP.. The sound combo is very nicely done.. These guys clearly know their sound using this combo..
If your looking for a nice high end portable DAC. to use with your amp. Look into the HRT microstreamer. Seems to be just as good or better than the ME but cost $100 less.
The Burr Brown PCM1796 is used in Denon's top of the line Receiver, and also in my Denon 4010 BDP Blue Ray player, so I can attest to the quality of that in the MX2. My Denon 4010 BDP has another caveat that really ups the sound, and that is AL24 proccessing. I have done many A/B tests between a CD playing in the 4010, and my gears from my computer using jRiver Media Center 18, with audiophile settings through my Audio-GD NFB2 DAC, and to my tube headphone amp, and it very very close in the sound of both. So that MX2 is quite a package, because with the USB input data is Asychronous, same as what my Musical Fidelity V-link in the audio path does.
And all that for under $300.....would like to audition the MX2 and compare to my gears, that would be interesting considering how small and portable it is!