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Mid - High End DAC/AMP Combos (Please Rate) - Page 3

post #31 of 61
That thread is dominated by one or two members, who repeat the same mantra every day or so, and as soon as they buy something else, there will be a new mantra. There are many more owners that are very happy to just listen and enjoy the music they're hearing and no longer, or ever, post in that thread.

And another review from someone that has heard many, many high end dacs and amps:
http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/leckerton-uha-6s-mkii-portable-headphone-amplifier
post #32 of 61
Well to be fair, there were more than two guys who commented on the dac (id say around ten), but you are right in stating there are twoor tthree who actively post in that thread.
The inner fidelity review was what got me excited in the first place. I was in constant email contact with Nick during the out of stock period, when Ihad an order pplaced for the leck with the 806 op amps. Unfortunately, my aunt who lives in ny, and was supposed to bring it over, canceled her trip to my country after hurricane sandy.
That gave me time to check other comments and such. I am very interested in the ops review once he gets his, as I was planning to use it with an sgs3. I wasn't able to get any notable feedback on whether the lecks dac is at leastas good sas the wolfson on the sgs3 with the siyah custom kernel. I will probably get my answer when NZtechfreak has his review up in a few weeks.
But congrats to the OP, I think it's still the best bang for buck, as long as you temper your expectations on the dac. Please do a comprehensive review once you have it.
post #33 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by shotgunshane View Post

That thread is dominated by one or two members, who repeat the same mantra every day or so, and as soon as they buy something else, there will be a new mantra. There are many more owners that are very happy to just listen and enjoy the music they're hearing and no longer, or ever, post in that thread.
And another review from someone that has heard many, many high end dacs and amps:
http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/leckerton-uha-6s-mkii-portable-headphone-amplifier

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Travelbug View Post

Well to be fair, there were more than two guys who commented on the dac (id say around ten), but you are right in stating there are twoor tthree who actively post in that thread.
The inner fidelity review was what got me excited in the first place. I was in constant email contact with Nick during the out of stock period, when Ihad an order pplaced for the leck with the 806 op amps. Unfortunately, my aunt who lives in ny, and was supposed to bring it over, canceled her trip to my country after hurricane sandy.
That gave me time to check other comments and such. I am very interested in the ops review once he gets his, as I was planning to use it with an sgs3. I wasn't able to get any notable feedback on whether the lecks dac is at leastas good sas the wolfson on the sgs3 with the siyah custom kernel. I will probably get my answer when NZtechfreak has his review up in a few weeks.
But congrats to the OP, I think it's still the best bang for buck, as long as you temper your expectations on the dac. Please do a comprehensive review once you have it.


Yep and I'm one of those 2 or 3 active posters matter of fact I was the guy who started the thread. The DAC is a good DAC. It will sound far better then any phone or mainstream MP3 player or onboard laptop sound card. I think Leckerton did a great job with their products so much so i own both of the amps Nick Leckerton sells. The DAC works well for exactly what it was meant for, a small pocketable mobile DAC. Is there room for improvement? There's always room for improvement especially when the amp section sounds so nice. Give it time, I'm sure eventually a MKIII or an altogether different product from Leckerton will answer some of our more demanding head-fiers wishes. Currently for the price the 6S MK II is a steal of a deal. By the way, I've never considered myself part of the flavor of the month club.

post #34 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by DigitalFreak View Post



Yep and I'm one of those 2 or 3 active posters matter of fact I was the guy who started the thread. The DAC is a good DAC. It will sound far better then any phone or mainstream MP3 player or onboard laptop sound card. I think Leckerton did a great job with their products so much so i own both of the amps Nick Leckerton sells. The DAC works well for exactly what it was meant for, a small pocketable mobile DAC. Is there room for improvement? There's always room for improvement especially when the amp section sounds so nice. Give it time, I'm sure eventually a MKIII or an altogether different product from Leckerton will answer some of our more demanding head-fiers wishes. Currently for the price the 6S MK II is a steal of a deal. By the way, I've never considered myself part of the flavor of the month club.

Thanks for your impressions. Reading that threa , you reallyget rtheiimpression that the dac was so subpar. I rememberssome guy mentioning how bad it was, that the dac in hisaAsus laptop was so much better - thatwas a red flag post ffor me. Good to know it isn't necessarily the case...
post #35 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Travelbug View Post


Thanks for your impressions. Reading that threa , you reallyget rtheiimpression that the dac was so subpar. I rememberssome guy mentioning how bad it was, that the dac in hisaAsus laptop was so much better - thatwas a red flag post ffor me. Good to know it isn't necessarily the case...


Could be his laptop has a good sound card who knows. My laptop is a cheapo AMD tri core Acer I bought 18 months ago on sale for 300 bones and it's sound card sounds rather blah to me. On my elderly mothers desktop tower it sounds about on par as with her onboard sound card what ever that is. The DAC is a passable DAC in that it sounds better then a MP3 player. I do wish it could be better but again that's just me.


Edited by DigitalFreak - 11/26/12 at 11:00am
post #36 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by shotgunshane View Post

That thread is dominated by one or two members, who repeat the same mantra every day or so, and as soon as they buy something else, there will be a new mantra.

Amen.

 

I suggest that the OP may want to buy a standalone DAP that runs Spotify and Mog; such as the Touch 5G, Sony Z or Cowon Z2. I own the Cowon for the DSP effects and I use my IP5 for phone calls and browsing.

post #37 of 61
Thread Starter 

I will post my impressions several times in the next few weeks.

 

First will be with the Shure SE535LTD IEM's as the UM Miracles are not here yet. Then my buddy that lives in the next town over said he would let me do some testing with his just purchased ODAC + C421. I will test the Leckerton solo, and with the ODAC to see if I hear any audible differences and post them here. I will also post my comparison of the Leckerton Amp vs the C421 amp. Lastly, I will be getting my UM Miracles in the next 2-3 weeks and will post impressions with those.

 

Given the above, I want to note something I explained on the other thread. This is not the Cirrus Logic chip in the iPhone; this is the flagship chip used in Harmon Kardon and Marantz equipment for home audio. In the past, I have owned and or auditioned many pieces of HK and Marantz gear for my home audio equipment. To be more specific, last year I auditioned the Marantz SA8004 SACD along with many others to add to my home system. This was over a year ago now, but I know for fact I like the Marantz sound and though that piece of gear was top notch. I ended up buying nothing due to personal circumstances changing, but I know it was one of the finalists in the category of SACD devices. After hours of research, I came across a link that brought me to the Marantz website. Guess what DAC is in the SA8004? The Cirrus Logic CS4398, the same one that is in the Leckerton UHA-6S.MKII. 

 

Then I hear about how it is all about the implementation of the DAC and how Nick must not have put much effort into the implementation. What a crock of crap in my opinion. Nick works as an application engineer for Cirrus Logic. He assists other companies on how to implement the DAC in their products for a living. If you do not think he already understands the proper way to implement this DAC, you are just trying to justify another purchase of yours.

 

I am a product manager for a major satellite modem manufacture, and can say without a doubt that our application and implementation engineers are of the best in our field of work. Nick is highly regarded in his field; he Knows how to implement these DAC's. He does not need to put effort into it as he could probably draw a schematic of the best implementation of these DAC's from memory on command.

 

I will run all of the tests I mentioned because I think I have a slight case of OCD and I HAVE to know for sure. I do not know why, but I do. I will also let my buddy give his opinions and post them here as to not seem bias. I honestly believe, knowing Marantz equipment, this will be of the most transparent DAC/AMP's on the market. Maybe that is not what others are looking for, but to me that is what makes a good DAC/AMP.

 

Que

post #38 of 61
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by devgru View Post

Amen.

 

I suggest that the OP may want to buy a standalone DAP that runs Spotify and Mog; such as the Touch 5G, Sony Z or Cowon Z2. I own the Cowon for the DSP effects and I use my IP5 for phone calls and browsing.

 

That does not make any sense to me. If I am unhappy with the DAC portion, I would rather just buy an ODAC to add to the mix. If I have to add another device, it will not be the player as my phone also uses Bluetooth to connect to my car audio when driving. 

post #39 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by theque View Post

 

That does not make any sense to me. If I am unhappy with the DAC portion, I would rather just buy an ODAC to add to the mix. If I have to add another device, it will not be the player as my phone also uses Bluetooth to connect to my car audio when driving. 


I can't cure cognitive dissonance or OCD and neither can a new DAC. The ODAC isn't much for portability (footprint, AC powered) and will still need amplification. MBAir -> RME Babyface. You're building a house on mud with the smartphone. The only thing portable is the phone!


Edited by devgru - 11/27/12 at 2:43pm
post #40 of 61
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by devgru View Post


I can't cure cognitive dissonance or OCD and neither can a new DAC. The ODAC isn't much for portability (footprint, AC powered) and will still need amplification. MBAir -> RME Babyface. You're building a house on mud with the smartphone. The only thing portable is the phone!

I am not sure I agree with your sentiments. With the Samsung Note 2 I can bypass the DAC via USB and send it to an external DAC. I could also use that external DAC / AMP on my laptop while at work so I do not kill the battery.

 

I do understand your point, I just believe in my case if I had to carry 3 devices (Phone, Player, and Amp) or (Phone, DAC, and Amp) I would rather choose the latter. This is compounded by the fact that with CIEM's on you cannot hear the world around you. If my phone were my player than I would still be alerted (quite annoyingly I will give you) when I receive an email or phone call. 

post #41 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by theque View Post

I am not sure I agree with your sentiments. With the Samsung Note 2 I can bypass the DAC via USB and send it to an external DAC. I could also use that external DAC / AMP on my laptop while at work so I do not kill the battery.

 

I do understand your point, I just believe in my case if I had to carry 3 devices (Phone, Player, and Amp) or (Phone, DAC, and Amp) I would rather choose the latter. This is compounded by the fact that with CIEM's on you cannot hear the world around you. If my phone were my player than I would still be alerted (quite annoyingly I will give you) when I receive an email or phone call. 

And the RME can be used in the same scenarios. Plus, it's bus-powered. The ODAC will require an AC source.


I was just attempting to save you some grief. I am aware of the USB functionality and it's nice to have, but I think the novelty exceeds its utility.

 

I don't know if you like to use EQ, but the RME has killer hardware EQ and the best drivers in the biz. It's always a solid choice to use pro-audio when possible. Extremely clean DAC in the RME.


Edited by devgru - 11/27/12 at 3:28pm
post #42 of 61
Thread Starter 

The Leckerton UHA-6S.MKII arrived today. I got home late from work but will take pics and post impressions tomorrow; going to enjoy some music now...

post #43 of 61

Just literally put in an order for the MKII, very excited!

post #44 of 61
Thread Starter 

Ok, I have had plenty of time to listen to the Leckerton UHA-6S.MKII (AD8610) and can give some initial impressions…

 

If I had to use a single word to give my impression it would be Transparent. Whether it is connected to my laptop, desktop, or Galaxy Note 2 the Leckerton sounds exactly the same, clear and accurate. If there is one thing I would complain about is the gain switch. While connected to the Shure SE535LTD-J’s I hear a distinct buzz when turning on the high gain mode. I do not know if this will be fixed when I test it with my buddies 250 Ohm DT770’s though.

 

As to the DAC I can say it sounds far superior to the Phone and Computer DAC’s, but as I have no way to isolate it vs. a pre-known good DAC at this time, I cannot definitively say anything about it. With that said, I will be testing it verses the ODAC as you will see below.

 

More to come, but until then, I would definitely say it was worth the money and would recommend it to anyone looking to purchase an external portable DAC/AMP to use with one of the new Samsung Android Phones.

 

 

However, as soon as I can get time to go over to my buddy’s house I will be I trying the following setups:

 

1) Samsung Galaxy Note 2 -> HackShop USB Cable -> Leckerton UHA-6S.MKII (AD8610) -> Shure SE535LTD-J

 

2) Samsung Galaxy Note 2 -> HackShop USB Cable -> Leckerton UHA-6S.MKII (AD8610) -> Beyerdynamic HT770-PRO-250

 

3) Samsung Galaxy Note 2 -> HackShop USB Cable -> JDS ODAC -> Mini-to-Mini -> Leckerton UHA-6S.MKII (AD8610) -> Shure 535LTD-J

 

4) Samsung Galaxy Note 2 -> HackShop USB Cable -> JDS ODAC -> Mini-to-Mini -> Leckerton UHA-6S.MKII (AD8610) -> Beyerdynamic HT770-PRO-250

 

 

I will also compare it to the following:

 

5) Samsung Galaxy Note 2 -> HackShop USB Cable -> JDS ODAC -> Mini-to-Mini -> JDS C421 (AD8620) -> Shure 535LTD-J

 

6) Samsung Galaxy Note 2 -> HackShop USB Cable -> JDS ODAC -> Mini-to-Mini -> JDS C421 (AD8620) -> Beyerdynamic HT770-PRO-250

 

 

The above setups will allow me to make several comparisons with the limited equipment I will have at hand. The JDS ODAC, JDS C421, and Beyerdynamic HT770-PRO-250 are my friend’s setup that he will allow me to use. Below are the tests I will be performing:

 

Test the Leckerton DAC vs. a known quality DAC (JDS ODAC) with low impedance headphones; Setup 1 vs. Setup 3.

 

Test the Leckerton DAC vs. a known quality DAC (JDS ODAC) with high impedance headphones; Setup 2 vs. Setup 4.

 

Test the Leckerton Amplifier vs. a known quality Amplifier (JDS C421) with low impedance headphones; Setup 3 vs. Setup 5.

 

Test the Leckerton Amplifier vs. a known quality Amplifier (JDS C421) with high impedance headphones; Setup 4 vs. Setup 6.

 

Test the Leckerton one box solution vs. the JDS two box solution with low impedance headphones; Setup 1 vs. Setup 5.

 

Test the Leckerton one box solution vs. the JDS two box solution with high impedance headphones; Setup 2 vs. Setup 6.

post #45 of 61

I'm not a big fan of buzz out of my amps, but on high gain with IEMs, probably not too surprising.  Does the low gain setting drive the Shures loud enough?

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