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Sony's DSD-capable PHA-2 portable headphone amp/DAC - Page 34

post #496 of 506
Maybe its the device(android) you are using but to say it does not work on android at all is not correct as myself and many others have got it working.
post #497 of 506
Quote:
Originally Posted by harrinj View Post

Well I think im going to return the PHA-2.

[snip]

Plus I find the headphone out to be pretty weak. I can turn the volume knob all the way even with my Bose QC15 headphones and it's not loud enough in the car.

Thanks for posting this! I stopped posting to this thread a while back, because I felt like I was beating a dead horse, but with your testimony, I feel justified in pointing out, once more, that the PHA-2's specifications make it obvious that its amp section is too weak for anything but IEMs and the most efficient headphones. Sadly, long before a lack of volume presents itself as an issue with less efficient headphones, you can suffer a lack of dynamics or a lack of bass control and extension, even if you're not hearing any clipping.

90mW into 32-Ohms is indeed "weak."

See my earlier post:
http://www.head-fi.org/t/680208/sonys-dsd-capable-pha-2-portable-headphone-amp-dac/240#post_9949418
Edited by zilch0md - 4/20/14 at 1:07pm
post #498 of 506
Come on guys. I'm using the PHA-2, as Sony intended, with an iPod or ZX1, and decent IEMs; Shure SE456s, and it sounds absolutely brilliant. Just because it wasn't designed to work with some other DAPs or full size headphones doesn't mean it's no good.
post #499 of 506
Quote:
Originally Posted by malcolm.mcintyre View Post

Come on guys. I'm using the PHA-2, as Sony intended, with an iPod or ZX1, and decent IEMs; Shure SE456s, and it sounds absolutely brilliant. Just because it wasn't designed to work with some other DAPs or full size headphones doesn't mean it's no good.

I like it, its got great sound quality. I just wish it would work with my device. Maybe it will in time. I'm keeping it afterall. I do have an iPad 3 that I don't use that I could start using with it I suppose. It looks great, sounds great and works as half way as I intended. I don't like Fiio and cypher labs is too expensive so this works enough. I asked the CM11 soundguy on Google+ if he'd add/look into support for the PHA-2.
post #500 of 506
Quote:
Originally Posted by malcolm.mcintyre View Post

Come on guys. I'm using the PHA-2, as Sony intended, with an iPod or ZX1, and decent IEMs; Shure SE456s, and it sounds absolutely brilliant. Just because it wasn't designed to work with some other DAPs or full size headphones doesn't mean it's no good.

I agree!
post #501 of 506
Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post


I agree!


Honestly speaking, the F886 had already a very good sound quality, now imagine that, even better, that's what the PHA-2 is for me, it is really an improvement, specially driving IEMs like the XBA-H3. (Plus I use it as an output soundcard for my laptop, even better)

post #502 of 506
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vect View Post
 


Honestly speaking, the F886 had already a very good sound quality, now imagine that, even better, that's what the PHA-2 is for me, it is really an improvement, specially driving IEMs like the XBA-H3. (Plus I use it as an output soundcard for my laptop, even better)

 

I don't doubt it, at all.  I LOVE Sony.  I love their cosmetic designs, their quality of construction, their bug-free user interfaces, and their sound. I've been using the 96/24-capable Sony PCM-M10  as my DAP for over three years - with no failures - and it's running firmware version 1.0.0 - with no upgrades even available or necessary!

 

 

 

I just wish they weren't constrained by the mass market demands for light weight, small form factor, long battery life, and convenience.  Those factors surely have something to do with the PHA-2's limited power output.

 

Mike 

post #503 of 506
Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post
 

 

I don't doubt it, at all.  I LOVE Sony.  I love their cosmetic designs, their quality of construction, their bug-free user interfaces, and their sound. I've been using the 96/24-capable Sony PCM-M10  as my DAP for over three years - with no failures - and it's running firmware version 1.0.0 - with no upgrades even available or necessary!

 

 

 

I just wish they weren't constrained by the mass market demands for light weight, small form factor, long battery life, and convenience.  Those factors surely have something to do with the PHA-2's limited power output.

 

Mike 


I use this amp to go on streets and listen to music, it is big enough as it is, a bigger amp would only add more constraint, what's the purpose to have a portable amp, if I'm to use it only at home? I agree that the battery is on the low side, but hell, I like the amp this way, sony never promoted it as a power hungry headphone amp.

post #504 of 506

You're right - Sony hasn't misrepresented the product and best of all, they published the PHA-2's specifications accurately, it seems. 

 

Unfortunately, a lot of people don't read specs or do, but fail to realize the limitations imposed by only 90mW into 32-Ohms - with the possibility of ending up disappointed when they try to use their insufficiently sensitive headphones with it.

 

Again, I feel Sony can sell a lot more PHA-2s to the mass market, equipped, just as it is, than they could sell a PHA-x, that offers an amp section that outputs 2000mW into 32 Ohms - that's over 22 times as much power!  And it could be had using the very same Texas Instruments TPA6120A2 chip that's already in the PHA-2, given a supply voltage of 15VDC instead of something less than 3.7V, currently.  That chip needs 12V for 1500 mW, or 15V for 2000 mW into 32-Ohms.  (See the TPA6120A2 data sheet at http://www.ti.com/lit/ds/symlink/tpa6120a2.pdf)   

 

The PHA-2 is using a one-cell, 3.7V battery. 15V would require a 4-cell Li-Ion battery and, to maintain the same play time as had currently, the total size of the battery would have to be much larger than four times the size of the existing single-cell Li-Ion battery, because the 2000mW amp section would pull a lot more amperage per unit of time.  If they still wanted to support the very convenient 5V USB charging, Sony would have to incorporate a DC-to-DC converter - in order to bring a 4-cell battery up to a full charge of 16.8V from a 5V source, but the 500 mA maximum output of a USB port would take a long time to charge so much larger a battery, especially with the losses imposed by a DC-to-DC converter. It would be less expensive, more efficient, and yes, less convenient for the end user to allow charging from an external, switchmode PSU that plugs into a 120/240 AC outlet.  

 

Lastly, this PHA-x model would have to sport larger heat sinks, if it's going to output 2 Watts into 32-Ohms. 

 

So...  How many of those could Sony hope to sell?  I don't know, but it would be a tiny fraction of what they're going to achieve with the PHA-2 - because... the mass market likes small, lightweight, and convenient mobile devices - and, there are plenty of efficient IEMs and even headphones out there to choose from.

 

Mike

post #505 of 506

I had to send mine back. the headphone amp was just too weak and only being able to use it with my computer or amp the hissy audio out of my phone's audio jack. Got a Theorem 720 and it works with my Nexus 5 and drives my headphones great!  

post #506 of 506

I'm glad you didn't get stuck with something you weren't happy with.  :smile:

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