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$350CAD HERUS: Asynchronous USB Audio 2.0, 24bit 352.8Ks/S, DXD and DSD64/128, 2.4VRMS Headphone DAC - Page 10

post #136 of 278
Quote:
Originally Posted by EtymoticFtW View Post

I use ER4S with Herus and I do not hear hiss. And I listen kind of quietly, not high volume. Source is iPhone 4S and MacBook.


I've never heard any real amount of hiss from the ER6 using any of my headphone amps, but I also don't think the ER6 falls into the category of super high sensitivity.

I can't remember what their electrical characteristics are any more, it's been quite a few years since I got them, but everything from a Sugden Headmaster, Benchmark DAC1, and on the portable side a HeadRoom Total AirHead, ADL Stride, CEntrance HiFi-M8, and now the Herus, seem to be compatible without any real hiss problems.

That said, I am looking to upgrade as the ER6 is a little thin in the mids and analytical, with light bass/mid bass too. Not great with the Herus, or even the HiFi-M8 with tone shaping.

The ER6 was useful on a good number of airline flights, blocking out the jet engine roar and screaming babies. Ditto Amtrak between NY and Boston, the ER6 offers a good degree of noise isolation.

But the Herus and HiFi-M8 deserve better.

post #137 of 278
I also get hiss with the UERM with my Herus. Given I do a lot of low volume listening, its a deal breaker.
post #138 of 278

The Herus is getting clock timing tweaks and DSD bug fixes, so looks like the sound will change, hopefully for the better.

post #139 of 278
good to hear the dac is firmware upgradeable smily_headphones1.gif
post #140 of 278
Quote:
Originally Posted by tomscy2000 View Post
 

The Herus is getting clock timing tweaks and DSD bug fixes, so looks like the sound will change, hopefully for the better.


Sounds good, clock timing improvements are always welcome.

I haven't tried DSD playback as yet and so was not aware of any bugs there, first I need to actually purchase a DSD album download or two! That's a tough call considering the mastering file/provenance issue is still murky at best, excepting classical music.

post #141 of 278
Quote:
Originally Posted by zerodeefex View Post

I also get hiss with the UERM with my Herus. Given I do a lot of low volume listening, its a deal breaker.

When you are talking about "hiss", do you mean noise floor or sibilance?

post #142 of 278
Noise floor.
post #143 of 278

Workplace desktop: HP EliteBook-> JRMC19-> Pangea PC-USB-> iFi iPurifier-> Resonessence Labs Herus-> Furutech F63(G)-> Sennheiser PX 100 (Mont Blanc Meisterstück LeGrand Ballpoint Pen).

 

I'm trying the Pangea USB-PC cable, in conjunction with the Herus and iFi iPurifier.

So far I like it a lot, holding it's own vs. the previously installed Chord Co. Silver Plus, possibly even better low level detail retrieval despite only a cursory break-in period Monday and Tuesday, about 8 hours combined. Seems like no tonal balance, or dynamic contrast penalty.

This is a very good cheap USB cable, a keeper.


Edited by MikeyFresh - 3/21/14 at 8:06pm
post #144 of 278
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeyFresh View Post

I'm trying the Pangea USB-PC cable in conjunction with the Herus and iPurifier.
So far I like it a lot, holding it's own vs. the previously installed Chord Co. Silver Plus, possibly even better low level detail retrieval despite only a cursory break-in period Monday and Tuesday, about 8 hours combined. Seems like no tonal balance, or dynamic contrast penalty.
This is a very good cheap USB cable, a keeper.



Just curious, does the iPurifier really makes a difference?
No offence but I'm a bit skeptical of such products thats said to improve digital signal (aka hdmi cables).
post #145 of 278
No offense taken, I agree some of this stuff can at times seem like the lunatic fringe.
Yes it makes a difference, although the degree of difference is dependent on many variables.
Beyond the degree of difference perceived, it is impossible to assure yourself, let alone others, that difference is quantifiable in the amount of $99, which is the U.S. asking price for the iPurifier.
I wish the iPurifier were $25, not because I'm unhappy with its performance, but because $99 is a lot relative to the cost of the Herus DAC itself.
I find this device makes a larger difference on my HP W7 laptop than it does on my Mac mini. I also find it makes a larger difference on a DAC that is bus powered, as opposed to a DAC that is self powered. However that doesn't mean it makes no difference on a self powered DAC, and the design description supports that by saying it filters both the power and data lines, as well as the ground. They don't make huge hocus pocus type claims, it is stated this device lowers EMI noise by 5dB, presumably resulting in a cleaner looking square wave.
I'm not an EE, but I think it is fairly well understood now that clean power and ground are fundamentally important in guarding against EMI induced jitter, i.e. a square wave that is rather slanted looking.
The other perfectly reasonable claim made by the manufacturer is strict adherence to the USB protocol's 90 Ohm impedance, which is specified as +\- 10% in the USB standard. That sounds to me like the good 'ole days of S/PDIF coax cables that weren't meeting the 75 Ohm spec, that too caused jitter.
How well (or invisibly) any given DAC can tolerate or self filter noise on the bus power, data, or ground, or for that matter a deviance from the 90 Ohm impedance is debatable, and likely it varies.
One thing is for sure, off the shelf computers weren't designed to be music sources from a noise perspective. Unless you've got a dedicated music server such as Auraliti, SOtM, or even the purpose built Bryston BDP-2, there is likely a level of noise coming from the computer many times higher than is found in high-end audio equipment.
Other ways of minimizing noise include a high grade USB hub such as the Vaunix Lab Brick (yup that works too), more mystical devices such as a Shakti Stone (accepted as highly effective in absorbing noise for 2 decades now), or even what the software music players like Audirvana+, and JRMC do in blocking services and processes on the computer which generate noise, or hijack too much CPU thread priority or hog RAM. All of that can effect how a USB DAC sounds.
The Herus sounds fine on it's own, however in my opinion it sounds better coupled with the iPurifier when connected to my W7 laptop. A blacker quieter background allows low level detail to be more apparent, instruments take on a greater amount of separation from each other, and dynamic contrast is also enhanced. On a home stereo this also results in a larger better defined stereo image, though on headphones that is harder to discern. Your mileage will vary.
Edited by MikeyFresh - 3/19/14 at 7:55pm
post #146 of 278
Thanks for the extensive insight.

I guess one can only "hear-to-believe" smily_headphones1.gif

I for one, believe in SQ improvements when it comes to anything along the analog path. I'm not from an EE background either, but looking at something like the iPurifier really strikes me as bordering on 'snake oil', placebo effect (whatever you call it). To me, digital is digital (1 or 0). Even if the signal arrives at the DAC corrupted, i believe it is the job of the DAC or usb protocol to correct it.

But I agree with you on the bus vs self powered part.
Even the WireWorld cable that I got, advertises itself as having separately insulated power and signal conductors.

However, I'm not sure if power itself has any effect on jitter, clocking (which incidently will be fixed in the new Herus firmware)
But anything that gives me a blacker background on the Herus sounds like a deal to me smily_headphones1.gif

I will give it a try when I can. Thanks!
post #147 of 278

So I got my hands on the iPurifier today. 

 

From my initial impressions doing a quick 5-10min A/B, I observed that there wasn't any difference with the noisefloor (no music playing) on the super sensitive Fitear 335s.

I would attribute this to probably the already very clean usb circuitry on my diy pc setup (running off UPS, decent PSU and motherboard). 

There's maybe a tiny bit of added clarity and air to the soundstage which may become more apparent as i continue to test out more songs.

But otherwise, it's not a night & day difference overall. No changes to the balance in bass/mid/treble that I can hear of. 

 

It's a very well-machined little unit though, matches quite well with Herus' build quality. 

 

 

On a side note, I should be getting my F63 tomorrow. This should complete my desktop setup for IEM listening. :)


Edited by delancyst - 3/20/14 at 7:01am
post #148 of 278
Quote:
Originally Posted by delancyst View Post

 

 

Nice shot! :beerchug:

post #149 of 278

The Wireworld USB cable design is in large part addressing the vulnerability of the data line to be negatively affected by noise present on the power line, when those two conductors are in close proximity. That noise comes from the computer. For super detail oriented power filtering devices, take a look at the SOtM filters made for SATA connections, or even the computer's fan. Those are intended to choke the noise before it ever leaves the computer on the USB line. 

 

I want to try a Wireworld USB cable at some point, but I haven't chosen which one just yet.

 

Power quality definitely influences the behavior of the clocks. Even in high-end disc spinners or DACs, careful attention to the quality of the local power supply of the clock circuit can make a huge difference between two players using the very same input receiver chip, where one has a poorer implementation than the other. Those clock circuits need power to operate, the cleaner that power is and the more rigidly regulated it is, the better the clock performs.

 

Clocking involves the use of crystal oscillators, the way they work is a function of the known precise/stable resonant frequency of the crystal (typically quartz). Both EMI and RFI are (invisible to human sight) enemies that pass through and vibrate the crystal in an abnormal fashion, causing jitter.

 

Borrowed from a German University authored paper presented at the Microwave Symposium Digest in 2010:

 

The high frequency (HF) crystal oscillator is susceptible to electromagnetic interference (EMI), which affects the stability or accuracy of reference frequency standards. The effect of radiated EMI can be both deterministic and random in nature that shows up as jitter in the time domain and phase noise in the frequency domain.

 

So not a snake oil type of product in that they are purporting to attenuate EMI by 5 dB, whether that is very/slightly/or not audible with any given DAC is of course open to each individual's personal take.

 

I'd be curious if you have a try and buy scenario available with the iPurifier, what you think, especially with loudspeakers where the stereo image is greatly enhanced, to me the single biggest difference. The sound stage becomes both larger and more precisely focused when used with the Herus, and that is a function of a blacker quieter background.

 

Please post your findings if you get a chance to audition the iPurifier with the Herus. It won't take the form of "brilliant with/sucks without", however in my experience there is a noticeable improvement.

post #150 of 278

Ah, you moved quickly on that one, my last post comes late to the game.

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