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The Centrance HiFi M8 thread - Page 40

post #586 of 4961
Glad to see the addition of the RSA balanced connector, as now I'd be able to use the same headphone cable for all of the portable amps currently under consideration: HiFi M8, RX Mk III, 71-B, and Intruder. Hadn't even heard about the M8 until yesterday afternoon. Spent the rest of the day reading Michael's excellent blog from start to finish. I have no idea how the M8 will sound relative to the others I've listed, but the offering is truly compelling (provided battery life is tuned more for duration than brute force, as I'm only planning to run IEMs through the unit).
post #587 of 4961

> Either RSA contacted CEntrance, or CEntrance had decided to please the 10-20% of people.

 

It's funny, Ray Samuels Audio is located about five miles away from CEntrance. We are close neighbors in the north Chicago suburbs. Yet, we have not talked to Ray about the RSA jack on the M8. The community spoke and that was enough for us. I have to say that the demand for the RSA jack is not huge, but there is some and we are also finding that demand actually varies by country, so this will be interesting when we are trying to satisfy customers in Asia, EU, US, Australia, etc.

 

The jack actually has another name, but I'm calling it the RSA jack since Ray pioneered the use of the jack on his amps. Previously it was mostly used on camera equipment. Ray is an avid photographer and that's how he got the idea for the jack.

 

We found these jacks from two suppliers. One in Japan and another in Taiwan. We got samples of both. They appear identical. We decided to incorporate them.

 

On the subject of robustness, I have a speech to make. It goes something like this:

 

I come from the school of designing robust equipment, where everything, including the jacks, needs to be built tough. I grew up making broadcast gear and equipment for rock-and-roll stages. This stuff gets thrown into the truck at the end of the day (early morning, usually)  to be used again at the next gig. This kind of gear needs to be able to survive being thrown across the stage and continue to work the next day. From that, albeit remote perspective, I feel that XLRs offer the most reliability. RSA jacks are definitely not in the same league. Firstly, they are plastic. Secondly, there is no locking mechanism. Thirdly, they are small, making it easy to accidentally tear off the jack that's plugged in if you are not careful. It's actually quite hard to "tear off" an XLR jack, which is why I like them :)

 

Having said that, you decide which jack you want. You may already have the headphones cabled for the RSA jack. You may already have one of Ray's amps. Once we have prototypes of all three jacks, we will let you pick and choose. Until the units are physically built, you can technically change your mind. I just need to build some samples first and put the pictures up. Looks like in December we may have some pictures of the new HiFi-M8 version.


Edited by mgoodman - 11/13/12 at 8:40pm
post #588 of 4961
Quote:
Originally Posted by Armaegis View Post

You have the Lemo connector in your survey... that's not the same as a 4-pin mini xlr.

A few people indicated 4-pin mini XLR in the 'others' option.

 

---

Would be interesting for CEntrance to compare actual configuration sales from the survey results a year later. 


Edited by eron - 11/13/12 at 9:02pm
post #589 of 4961
Quote:
Originally Posted by eron View Post

2 out of 53 people indicated they want a mini 4-pin XLR. 3 times more people indicated their preference for RSA 4 pin. Though I'm guessing that RSA is backing the provision.

 

I actually could go either way.  However, I do have a very nice and short ALO audio cable that will let me plug a full size 4-pin XLR headphone into the RSA plug, so I think I may go for the RSA plug instead.  This way, with the RSA plug I can use my balanced IEM or my full size balanced headphones via the adapter!  

 

But then reading Michael's post makes me question any change from 4-pin.  Decisions, decisions...


Edited by HeadphoneAddict - 11/13/12 at 9:32pm
post #590 of 4961

> Would be interesting for CEntrance to compare actual configuration sales from the survey results a year later. 

Sure, as long as we don't forget. It's quite likely we will be on to the next big thing by then :)


Edited by mgoodman - 11/15/12 at 3:03pm
post #591 of 4961
Quote:
Originally Posted by HeadphoneAddict View Post

 

I actually could go either way.  However, I do have a very nice and short ALO audio cable that will let me plug a full size 4-pin XLR headphone into the RSA plug, so I think I may go for the RSA plug instead.  This way, with the RSA plug I can use my balanced IEM or my full size balanced headphones via the adapter!  

 

But then reading Michael's post makes me question any change from 4-pin.  Decisions, decisions...

As I posted above, I'm struggling with the same choice.  RSA = smaller, less intrusive on the end of an IEM cable, XLR-4 is more robust, bigger.  Hmmm...

post #592 of 4961
Quote:
Originally Posted by aamefford View Post

As I posted above, I'm struggling with the same choice.  RSA = smaller, less intrusive on the end of an IEM cable, XLR-4 is more robust, bigger.  Hmmm...

Which, if there is a diff, will have the best sound qualities?

post #593 of 4961

There shouldn't be a difference, but I'd take a 4 Pin XLR over Kobiconn anyday. Not a tough choice for me. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Saraguie View Post

Which, if there is a diff, will have the best sound qualities?


Edited by MorbidToaster - 11/13/12 at 10:04pm
post #594 of 4961
Quote:
Originally Posted by aamefford View Post

As I posted above, I'm struggling with the same choice.  RSA = smaller, less intrusive on the end of an IEM cable, XLR-4 is more robust, bigger.  Hmmm...

 

I have the Kobiconn (aka RSA) connectors on the Rx Mk3/SR-71B and in 2 of my IEMs and they seem quite robust. The only thing is their weird 90 degree bend which is a bit of a blessing and a curse. It's sorta awkward when it comes out at that angle however it also seems more secure and protected from accidental bends at the connector side. Therefore the stress seems to be more on the headphone cable instead.

 

Personally I do like the Kobiconn as (if it's for portable use) seems to be more "standard" set by RSA and followed by ALO/CyperLabs.

 

I see a few references to the Lemo connector...is that just another name for Hirose or is it different altogether? I don't recall seeing Hirose as one of the supported connectors.

post #595 of 4961
I agree completely about the RSA jack and i've been pretty vocal about it, its magnetic, its tin, its plastic, it has little by way of strain relief and it puts stress on the cable, i'm disappointed it has gained traction, only TRRS is worse...

mini 4 pin XLR, Hirose (not the same as lemo) and Lemo are my favorites, but realistically mini XLR would be more readily picked up as a standard I think. I favor lemo, as its very robust, locking but disengages easily, attractive, has excellent dielectric properties (insulator is peek, better than teflon), is very compact but very robust and has copper/gold pins.

basically it ticks all the boxes except its more expensive than the others, however with enough buying power the price could be pushed down, besides given the cables and headphones these connectors are going on, it seems ridiculous to cheap out on the connector and make it tin.... besides it retails at mouser and digikey for only a couple dollars more than the oyaide mini that everyone loves and its a better connector in every way. its better than the vast majority of audiophile connectors too, its designed for and used in hispec Mil, Aerospace, particle physics and nuclear medicine instrumentation





BTW thats a Lemo mini BNC as well. this is my DIY project so i'm not advertising. those with keen eyes will notice a N channel and P channel Jfet symbol on my jh13s, diy audio geek to the end =)

but I fear the battle is lost due to saturation, its worse than VHS...

Lemo isnt used by anyone except for myself and as a result a few other DIYers, plus I believe Mark Levinson uses various Lemo connectors on his gear
Edited by qusp - 11/15/12 at 3:07am
post #596 of 4961
Quote:
Originally Posted by qusp View Post

Lemo isnt used by anyone except for myself and as a result a few other DIYers.

Michael did want the Lemo option to be included in the connector survey.

 

I think the Lemo connector has to be first pushed by an portable amp maker. Due to its smaller size than the XLR, it could make the portable amp smaller while providing a decent and compact connection.

There's possible room for collaboration between an amp maker and a headphone/earphone modder. Maybe provide a package for a launch.

post #597 of 4961

This will probably be my next audio purchase. Have to decide if I should recable or go with a M8 with kobi. Choices...

post #598 of 4961

I think it's funny that I side with the cable manufacturers on the (horrendous) Kobiconn connectors yet any time I mention not liking it somewhere a DIYer has to tell me why it's not a terrible connector. 

 

I was really hoping Centrance would be the start of straying away from it along Q not supporting it anymore.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by qusp View Post

I agree completely about the RSA jack and i've been pretty vocal about it, its magnetic, its tin, its plastic, it has little by way of strain relief and it puts stress on the cable, i'm disappointed it has gained traction, only TRRS is worse...
mini 4 pin XLR, Hirose (not the same as lemo) and Lemo are my favorites, but realistically mini XLR would be more readily picked up as a standard I think. I favor lemo, as its very robust, locking but disengages easily, attractive, has excellent dielectric properties (insulator is peek, better than teflon), is very compact but very robust and has copper/gold pins.
basically it ticks all the boxes except its more expensive than the others, however with enough buying power the price could be pushed down, besides given the cables and headphones these connectors are going on, it seems ridiculous to cheap out on the connector and make it tin.... besides it retails at mouser and digikey for only a couple dollars more than the oyaide mini that everyone loves and its a better connector in every way. its better than the vast majority of audiophile connectors too, its designed for and used in hispec Mil, Aerospace, particle physics and nuclear medicine instrumentation

BTW thats a Lemo mini BNC as well. this is my DIY project so i'm not advertising. those with keen eyes will notice a N channel and P channel Jfet symbol on my jh13s, diy audio geek to the end =)
but I fear the battle is lost due to saturation, its worse than VHS...
Lemo isnt used by anyone except for myself and as a result a few other DIYers, plus I believe Mark Levinson uses various Lemo connectors on his gear
post #599 of 4961

Yes, a can of worms we opened up, indeed! Sorry for the potential disappointment guys, I'm actually the one who has to pay through the nose for the Minimum Order Quantities on the RSA jack and the corresponding side panels! :) Is this an investment or is it money down the drain? May be I should have not spoken :)

 

In either case, we will give you choice (too late to back out) and that means we can get the community to voice the opinion on what to use moving forward. On the subject of Lemo, I agree that it's an awesome little jack, we used it quite a bit in broadcast equipment, but as it has been correctly pointed out, it's expensive and hasn't gained traction here so far. I have taken note of the interest and will see what we can do about this in the future.

post #600 of 4961
I am currently pre-ordered for 4 pin XLR. I would prefer in this order:

1) a standard, so I don't have to recable again or have a bunch of adapters, even if this is 4 pin XLR.

2) a small(er) jack.

I'm not changing up at this point, will watch and wait a bit.

Has anyone posted the RSA next to a 4-pin XLR, next to a scale or quarter or something so I (we) can get a sense of scale? Please link if so. If not, I'd sure appreciate it if someone has all the pieces available if they would photo and post.

Thanks in advance for this.
Edited by aamefford - 11/16/12 at 12:45am
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