Edited by ThatNzGuy - 11/4/13 at 3:57pm
Audinst Hud MX1 will always have a special place in my heart since it introduced me to the wonderful world of DACs. Now my father has my Audinst and i have the Audiolab M-Dac. He is very pleased with the Audinst.
As a hud-mx1 owner I am anxiously awaiting the first reviews of this new unit. I am on the fenc. about upgrading.
For the price point, I felt the original hud-mx1 was a great value and perfectly suited the requirements of my particular application. That being, to drive a pair of mid/low end studio monitors via RCA jack from a windows PC on a secondary rig. The volume attenuation of the rear RCA's was a critical "convienience" and solution to my needs. Requiring attenuation of the line out seriously narrowed the pool of viable candidates for my selection at the time.
In regards to fidelity, the hud-mx1 was equally well matched to my application. My extremely limited testing of the MX-1 in it's presumably intended application (as a headphone amplifier) leads me to believe that, while adequate, most serious head-fi'ers would scoff.
I have, however, experienced issues which have grown from a nuisance to mild annoyances in two years of otherwise pleasant ownership. It would appear that these issues are all addressed in this new iteration-the HUD-MX2. The issues were:
#3. I was hoping to be able to experiment with hosting the HUD-mx1 from my Samsung GS3 when I got back when they came out. Although I am not sure what the realities of using an android phone as source are, it was a novelty I hope to at least explore. The hud-mx1 isn't capable, the hud-mx2 apparently is. My guess says the problem lies with the power architecture of the Mx-1. I believe the dac circuit relies on USB power even when optional DC is supplied via rear connector. In my non-expert opinon, it is a design shortcoming because USB power is too noisy (and scarce) and should be completely severed when auxiliary power is available. I have no specific knowledge of bus specification or covention, so this is speculative. However, it is supposedly resolved and the whole circuit is improved
#2. The volume knob on the MX-1 is awkward, but worse, the volume pot has become VERY "scratchy" . I have used it much more than I would say a headphone user would, but nonetheless it is unacceptable.
#1. "Popping" when restarting or powering up the PC is bad on the MX-1. Supposedly fixed on the Mx-2. Since I am driving almost 600watts of live amplifier, this issue alone, over time, has me fed up. I am tired of powering the monitors on and off to prevent this. Again, supposedly fixed. I hope reviewers of the Mx-2 will evaluate this.
I've got one on the way for review. HUD-MX1 was one of my very first reviews, and the feedback on that (and subsequent reviews) was what pushed me to get more into reviewing in a semi-professional level. So I'll be curious to see/hear the updates on this new model. Their little HUD-mini was nice but seems to have been overlooked around here - possibly because it cost almost the same as the mx1, so people just got that instead. MX2 has some small but seemingly worthwhile improvements so I hope it delivers on my expectations.
I think it should be very nice for the HD650 and other full sized cans, just based on the specs. They have completely redone the amp section using a TPA6120 which has potential to sound great when done right. I also like the addition of the optical input which makes it a more versatile unit.
The only thing that concerns me is the output impedance. It tends to be around 10 ohms for the TPA6120, which makes it not the greatest match for IEMs. The original was 5 ohms which is an important distinction. So we'll see.
Interested in this new revision, after reconsidering spending money to Audio-GD NFB15.32. Just have few questions...:
1) Is there really reason to spend $100 more on NFB-15.32? Or difference with HD600/DT880 is nothing significant?
2) Do you think I could use it with DT880 600 Ohm with no big problem?
3) What about asynchronous USB? Is it included in new HUD-MX2?
4) If I want to use MX2 with studio monitors in future (Adam F5, $500), do I need some volume regulator or DAC out is regulated by MX2?
Thanks if you help me find out these answers
1) I don't know. I'm not familiar with that model, sorry.
2) The headphone section should be able to comfortably drive the 600 ohm DT880, at least on paper. In real life, will it be a good match? Don't know yet.
3) No async USB. I'm guessing they use the same VIA VT1728 chipset as seen in their HUD-mini product. But that's not for sure until I receive the mx2 and open it up.
4) The RCA outputs are volume controlled by the mx2. So they should work fine with active monitors.