Well I have been listening to the 501 all afternoon thru the headphone amp on the teac and the sound has settled in somemore.I have to say that I am surprised at how well the 501 drives my akg 701s for an amp that has a output rating of only 100mw.Though it lacks the dimensionality of my ha-160 amp it provides a very satisfying listening experience with my 701s.
I must say that the 501 has a unique ability to involve the listener and sheds light on certain aspects of the musical performance that makes one want to play recording after recording to reveal those musical aspects that at least in my experience have never been exposed.The particular combination of those aspects makes listening to this dac a measure of true pleasure.Some dacs may have more resolution, air or ultimate soundstage but none that I have heard has the musical ability that the 501 has that makes the listening experience a truely pleasurable experience.I have heard dacs that are way more expensive that are a lot less musically compelling to listen to.
I find myself running to my cd stand and pulling reference favorites to play on the 501.And it seems everytime the results are the same I hear aspects of musicality in those recordings that I was unaware of.It is like listening to those recordings and really hearing them for the first time in a musical extent.
I just hope things get even better with time but after only 3 days the dac is already sounding majestic.I can only imagine how great this dac will sound when I eventually upgrade the stock fuse to a hifi tuning supreme fuse.
Next up is the ha-501 headphone amp but it still is on backorder waiting for shipment.If the headphone amp section in the ud 501 dac sounds this good I suspect the seperate headphone amp will deliver the promise of more power and greater dimensionality and the ability of balanced drive (between the dac and seperate headphone amp)that will complete my nirvana.
Edited by buson160man - 6/17/13 at 3:30pm