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SQ battle - HM-901 vs Tera Player

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hello everyone!

I'm all new on Head-Fi, and as an SQ-obsessive young French student, I'm looking for the very best sounding portable player.
I have already read many reviews and comments but I cannot find what I would like, i.e. a definitive 'view' (the word is maybe not accurate in this context...) on which is the best portable player to date in terms of sound quality?

If I except very digital-sounding AK and DX series, the HM-901 and the Tera Player seem to be the two beasts to beat here. So here is the remaining question: which one is best?

I know it depends on the sound signature I would prefer, the type of music I listen to, and the IEM or headphone. The best would be to be able to compare Tera Player + Koss Porta Pro in Kramer mode, and HM-901 + Audez'e LCD.

Thank you for your help :)

post #2 of 7

From what I read the HM-901 is currently the best DAP available. 

post #3 of 7

I only  tried the Tera for 3mn but that was enough to know I didn't like it but others swear by it.

Head-fier Mimouille I believe has both and enjoy both so there you go.

post #4 of 7
Terra may sound amazing, but the absurd price rises just confirm the manufacturer is taking the piss out of its customers.
3 year old products should reduce in cost as R&D costs have been recovered
post #5 of 7
Which is the best? smily_headphones1.gif
post #6 of 7
Bump smily_headphones1.gif
post #7 of 7

I have Tera and love it - my favorite purchase ever and for sure the best sound I have ever heard with my 1plus2 or Koss Porta Pro phones (as good as vinyl and I never though possible in my lifetime to have digital reach that and especially in such tiny portable device). I love the ergonomics almost as much as SQ (it's a dream operating by touch with device in pocket and not needing to take it out and deal with touchscreen or tiny buttons on the sides of some touchscreen devices - hated that on my iphone).


Here is a recent video showing the assembly of one Tera. I think after watching this video it should be easier for (open minded) people to understand the cost (it is completely hand made). Research cost is only "recovered" in the step when the device is briefly connected to computer to transfer the firmware - so what you are essentially paying for with Tera is the time and skilled hands of Charles Altmann (I have no problem that someone with that type of very unique skill-set demands several thousand euro for several hours of his time required to assemble this - it is not uncommon for top engineers to demand those types of salaries).




For the record, I joined this forum specifically to learn about at that time upcoming hm-901 as that was what I planned to purchase (based on published specs and few reviews). After waiting for it to be released (there were delays) I ended up with Tera instead (after reading all the closed Tera threads I became intrigued). I have no regrets whatsoever even though I have never heard 901 (I have heard AK120 and Tera clearly wins that SQ head to head match-up in my opinion).

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