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Sony PHA-1 portable DAC/amp - Page 7

post #91 of 497
Quote:
Originally Posted by shigzeo View Post

By the way, I've got a review up at TouchMyApps. I consider this the creme of the crop now of the all-in-one devices. Smashing. It's almost 3AM. I'll participate more in this thread tomorrow. 

 

enjoyed reading that shigzeo thanks for posting the link... cracked-up giggling at this comment 'it’s a geek’s wet dream of reading material'... nice one bigsmile_face.gif

post #92 of 497
Quote:
Originally Posted by .Sup View Post

Great review shigzeo!
Great review thankss. I will have to go and try one in store now.
Looking forward to a Sony, Clas, fostex hp-p1 and venturecraft shootout.
post #93 of 497

It really is a very very nice machine, as polished in build and sound as anyone can make. The small quibbles on the USB connector (bet you it will break on a number of units) and the somewhat high Ω impedance are dismissible for such an overall complete package. 

 

This and the Pan Am are my two favourite DACs of this year. Incredible how the portable audio world is heating up.

post #94 of 497
Quote:
Originally Posted by shigzeo View Post

The output impedance is indeed a bit high. However, performance isn't poor like some headphone amps that sport similar impedances. 

Good to know.
post #95 of 497

For those who are interested, I will post square waves and rmaa a bit later. LInk will be in the review.

post #96 of 497
Quote:
Originally Posted by shigzeo View Post

For those who are interested, I will post square waves and rmaa a bit later. LInk will be in the review.

 

shigzeo... how does the amp compare soundwise to the WM-Z (WM-F)... would it benefit them?... cheers

post #97 of 497

That is the new walkman right? Unfortunately, I don't own that player, so the few minutes I've used the Z for isn't enough to compare. Sony have made a few good Walkman players, but most have been too hissy for me to use, that and their line outs were rubbish, so a nice amp like the PHA-1 doesn't much benefit. If the Z has fixed the line out problems but still has the hiss, the PHA-1 will do completely with the hiss. If there is no hiss and the line out is fixed and the Z works with the DAC as it is Android, I'd jump on it. Very very cool amp/DAC.

post #98 of 497
Quote:
Originally Posted by shigzeo View Post

That is the new walkman right? Unfortunately, I don't own that player, so the few minutes I've used the Z for isn't enough to compare. Sony have made a few good Walkman players, but most have been too hissy for me to use, that and their line outs were rubbish, so a nice amp like the PHA-1 doesn't much benefit. If the Z has fixed the line out problems but still has the hiss, the PHA-1 will do completely with the hiss. If there is no hiss and the line out is fixed and the Z works with the DAC as it is Android, I'd jump on it. Very very cool amp/DAC.

 

the WM-F appears to be just a smaller version of the WM-Z, the differences are the obvious screen size, the WM-F can play Flac and has a different Andriod OS (there's a rumoured update for the WM-Z), the WM-Z has a HDMI out which isn't on the WM-F.

 

I've never had any hiss from the WM-Z until this week... in the past I have had a bit of 'air' on old recordings (mic' air) but that completely disappears when the instruments kick in (I have the same on my hi-fi so I know it's on the recording and not added from the WM-Z)... the first hiss I've heard from the WM-Z was when I plugged in both the Heir 3.Ai & 4.Ai, it disappears for the most when the music kicks in with the 4.Ai but is there between most tracks that said, on some recordings I have no hiss whatsoever... the 3.Ai is a different story I tend to hear hiss for roughly 80% of the time, it's like owning the S-Series Walkman all over again (I never liked the Euro A-Series it lasted a week before being returned to Amazon, I never got on with the highly rated X-Series, that was too warm for me)... I really rate the WM-Z it reminds me of those fantastic professional Walkman cassette players of yesteryear (Christ, I loved mine to bits & pieces), I digress...

 

I'm relatively new to all this Head-Fi malarkey so can't really comment on the line-out or amplifiers (I can comment on hi-fi amps lol) but I do know that I have finally found some pretty damn fine headphones (4.Ai) to pair with the exceptional sounding WM-Z (to my ears)... the PHA-1 interest me to use as a headphone amp also as a desktop solution to my crap sounding Dell PC (even though I have a moderately good hi-fi set-up at home sometimes I have to consider my neighbours below so can't (won't) use it), it is not a necessity as I am now fully enjoying my WM-Z but there's bound to be times when I get home and the WM-Z has a dead battery & those pesky neighbours are in that I'll need to call on the services of my PC... so the PHA-1 would have a dual purpose in my thinking, a headphone amp for the WM-Z and a DAC/amp for the crap Dell.... you thoughts would be appreciated, I also figure the hiss I hear is from the IEM's (?).


Edited by OK-Guy - 10/10/12 at 12:56am
post #99 of 497

I'm also really interested to see a review between a walkman connected to the PHA1 and an iPod connected to it. From Japanese reviews, apparently the walkman sounds better.

post #100 of 497
Quote:
Originally Posted by OK-Guy View PostI've never had any hiss from the WM-Z until this week... in the past I have had a bit of 'air' on old recordings (mic' air) but that completely disappears when the instruments kick in (I have the same on my hi-fi so I know it's on the recording and not added from the WM-Z)... the first hiss I've heard from the WM-Z was when I plugged in both the Heir 3.Ai & 4.Ai, it disappears for the most when the music kicks in with the 4.Ai but is there between most tracks that said, on some recordings I have no hiss whatsoever... the 3.Ai is a different story I tend to hear hiss for roughly 80% of the time

Bring this question to the Heir thread.  I'm wondering if there is a difference in the drivers used and maybe a difference in sensitivity that affects the "Z".  I don't recall hearing the hiss... but if so, I'd think increasing the resistance at the plug of the headphone may help.

post #101 of 497
Quote:
Originally Posted by WayTooCrazy View Post

Bring this question to the Heir thread.  I'm wondering if there is a difference in the drivers used and maybe a difference in sensitivity that affects the "Z".  I don't recall hearing the hiss... but if so, I'd think increasing the resistance at the plug of the headphone may help.

 

I'm trying to think about a proper way of describing this 'hiss' question Way as I do not want to cause controversy by what I find with Heir's excellent products... I'll try doing it in terms that I understand, with the 4.Ai it's like putting on record on a turntable, when the needle hits the vinyl you hear slight noise before the music starts, that's what I hear between tracks and sometimes over the music on quite tracks before all the music cuts in, if its straight forward acoustic I hear nothing which is confusing as I'd expected to hear the same noise in the background.... the 3.Ai's are different, the 'hiss' is there but it's not irritating (my earlier judgment call comparing it with the hiss from the WM-S with stock buds was a tad extreme), if you familiar with the old cassette players it's like listening with Dolby-C on, the hiss is muted but still there but it does not distract me from enjoying music (ie it doesn't piss me off).

 

I wondering if it could be the seal on the 3.A, strangely I don't get a get a good seal using the same tips as the 4.Ai (I should try the others but I'm enjoying the 4.Ai's too much), could it be the cable?... this is all new to me IEM's etc, before I start saying stuff I'm hoping to figure it.

 

what you reckon?


Edited by OK-Guy - 10/10/12 at 3:43am
post #102 of 497
Quote:
Originally Posted by OK-Guy View Post
what you reckon?

I'll have to listen to a few more tracks sometime today with my new cable and the stock cable.  Then with other headphones.  I think the issue could be impedance matching.  The more sensitive the IEM, the more hiss will be found.  I could be way off on that... but that is what I think you might be hearing.  I'll play around with it today and see what I find.

post #103 of 497

I haven't detected any hiss or background noise with mine (using stock player and mainly 320VBR MP3).confused.gif

post #104 of 497

Thanks for the replies Zen & Way it's appreciated.... I wasn't concerned (well I must of been as I mentioned it) but I couldn't figure why there was some background noise so to speak.

 

I definitely not going to get the pliers out with my hands, sod that, it would be like a combine-harvester chopping wheat... thankfully I'm due to pop-in and see my hi-fi dealer tomorrow, his cable guy is Chord trained so I know he'll do a good job with any minor adjustments... I knew IEM's were sensitive, I was interested in the RX3 amp but decided against it because of the hiss it introduced(?) on some CIEM/IEM's.


Edited by OK-Guy - 10/10/12 at 5:39am
post #105 of 497

Okay Guy,

 

Yes, Sony players are notorious for hiss - one reason I gave up on them. That, and no matter how good they are for low ohm dynamic driver earphones, they can't handle balanced armatures without their frequency response and resolution balance going wonky. 

 

That said, generally, they are a joy to use and have decent battery life and aren't too big... except for the Z, which is simply too large for real portable use unless you just want to use it as a reader. But then again, I tend to prefer small devices. An amp, however, that is another story.

 

The Heir Audio 3.Ai is a sensitive earphones, sensitive enough that it can detect hiss in an iPhone 4s, which has less hiss than any portable I've used outside of Apple's new iPods. So, if anything can excite hiss, it is the 3.Ai. The 4.Ai does in fact seem less prone to hiss and spit, which is a blessing. But every source, even the PHA-1 will hiss a little. If the output device (headphone/earphone) is sensitive enough, hiss can be picked from the vacuum of space (not quite, but the comparison is close for some earphones). 

 

Nice setup by the way!

Quote:
Originally Posted by OK-Guy View Post

 

the WM-F appears to be just a smaller version of the WM-Z, the differences are the obvious screen size, the WM-F can play Flac and has a different Andriod OS (there's a rumoured update for the WM-Z), the WM-Z has a HDMI out which isn't on the WM-F.

 

I've never had any hiss from the WM-Z until this week... in the past I have had a bit of 'air' on old recordings (mic' air) but that completely disappears when the instruments kick in (I have the same on my hi-fi so I know it's on the recording and not added from the WM-Z)... the first hiss I've heard from the WM-Z was when I plugged in both the Heir 3.Ai & 4.Ai, it disappears for the most when the music kicks in with the 4.Ai but is there between most tracks that said, on some recordings I have no hiss whatsoever... the 3.Ai is a different story I tend to hear hiss for roughly 80% of the time, it's like owning the S-Series Walkman all over again (I never liked the Euro A-Series it lasted a week before being returned to Amazon, I never got on with the highly rated X-Series, that was too warm for me)... I really rate the WM-Z it reminds me of those fantastic professional Walkman cassette players of yesteryear (Christ, I loved mine to bits & pieces), I digress...

 

I'm relatively new to all this Head-Fi malarkey so can't really comment on the line-out or amplifiers (I can comment on hi-fi amps lol) but I do know that I have finally found some pretty damn fine headphones (4.Ai) to pair with the exceptional sounding WM-Z (to my ears)... the PHA-1 interest me to use as a headphone amp also as a desktop solution to my crap sounding Dell PC (even though I have a moderately good hi-fi set-up at home sometimes I have to consider my neighbours below so can't (won't) use it), it is not a necessity as I am now fully enjoying my WM-Z but there's bound to be times when I get home and the WM-Z has a dead battery & those pesky neighbours are in that I'll need to call on the services of my PC... so the PHA-1 would have a dual purpose in my thinking, a headphone amp for the WM-Z and a DAC/amp for the crap Dell.... you thoughts would be appreciated, I also figure the hiss I hear is from the IEM's (?).

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