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Oppo HA-1 Impressions Thread - Page 37

post #541 of 4750
Quote:
Originally Posted by olegausany View Post

But if i'm not mistaken Benchmark Dac 2 cost 800 more. But does the difference worth it?

 



yes good point but if it's an endgame dac for me then maybe with it. I wish I could hear both with th-900 and sennheisser hd800.

I also want to run 2.1 speakers one in a while but not sure the best unit to do this. I have some kef bookshelves amf hope I can use em as a second listening option.
post #542 of 4750
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shenook View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by olegausany View Post

But if i'm not mistaken Benchmark Dac 2 cost 800 more. But does the difference worth it?

 



yes good point but if it's an endgame dac for me then maybe with it. I wish I could hear both with th-900 and sennheisser hd800.

I also want to run 2.1 speakers one in a while but not sure the best unit to do this. I have some kef bookshelves amf hope I can use em as a second listening option.
HD800 sound great with HA-1 on high gain while TH900 shouldn't have problems with normal gain. As i already said couple of times before HA-1's Dac is as good as well known Matrix X-Sabre costing $1099.
post #543 of 4750

Just read my way through 37 pages of this thread, and I was just about to buy it when it sold out on the site! I have 650s and some LCD-Xs are on the way so having balanced connectors is nice, but what really sells is to me is how well it works in a desktop system. The remote, preamp outs, and screen just make this an amazing product for the price and I can't wait to pick mine up from their office (local hoorah) sometime next week. 

 

I have the Matrix M-stage amp and dac and I wait to replace them with a single magic box that does everything I want it to :L3000:

post #544 of 4750
Thread Starter 
I forget if anyone reported temperatures. I measured the hottest part of the grill at 111.3 F with my Fluke. The unit had been on for about 2 days, so definitely steady state. The Asgard 2 gets hotter, and the volume knob on the Asgard 2 gets pretty hot. 111 on the HA-1 should not be of concern. Full on Class A runs hot!

EDIT - beta unit.
Edited by aamefford - 6/1/14 at 11:14am
post #545 of 4750
I have a stock unit which is on for over 38 hours since its arrival and i have no problems keeping my hand on the grill
post #546 of 4750
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shenook View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by olegausany View Post

But if i'm not mistaken Benchmark Dac 2 cost 800 more. But does the difference worth it?

 



yes good point but if it's an endgame dac for me then maybe with it. I wish I could hear both with th-900 and sennheisser hd800.

I also want to run 2.1 speakers one in a while but not sure the best unit to do this. I have some kef bookshelves amf hope I can use em as a second listening option.

 

I have both the TH900's and hd800's with the oppo. Both sound awesome. I sold my burson 160d a few days after getting the oppo. Mine gets hot but it's not crazy hot. The Fostex's sound awesome and the 800's sound great even on normal gain with 1/4. I'm very happy with the oppo!

post #547 of 4750
how is it compared to the Burson?
post #548 of 4750

I received my HA-1 on Friday, I have only just opened the box, not yet even plugged it in.

 

Sidebar (Click to show)
An unfortunately collision with other things (Sporting Clays tournament was this weekend, the NCSA US Open is next weekend, plus a presentation to prepare to many hundreds for next Tues and Wed, and then of course life stuff!).  Same thing with my AK240.

 

First a question, I could use input on what additional review gear and instruments I need to acquire.

 

Details on feedback I am eliciting (Click to show)
You can see what cans, IEMs, preamps, amps, and DACs I own in my inventory (plus I have JRiver of course).  I am looking to add to my collection for review purposes, and I want to add what are considered the standards as defined by what most people own that purchase this price level of gear.  For example, I am going to pickup a set of AlphaDogs, PM-1's, HE-400s, 500's, 560's, or HE6, HD-800, etc.  For amps I am thinking WA7, Asgard 2, Burson, Soloist, etc., etc.  So as not to derail this thread please PM me with your thoughts on what "the standards" are so I can improve my reviews.  My other task is to get good gear to perform reviews with, including cables, transparent cables switchers/preamps, measuring devices (something like what is used to make binaural recordings would be awesome with mics to measure db, freq response, etc. from the listeners perspective with the cans on their head).  I will soon post this request in an appropriate forum after I have done some more research with some more detail and proposals, this is just a preliminary request for feedback for those interested in this particular amp.

 

That said I will start with my unboxing impressions.  Pics and a vid or two will be inserted later when I have my photo/vid station setup(backdrop, lighting w/gels, camera gear with right lenses and flashes figured out and timed, etc.).  That will be a couple of weeks.

 

Opening the box the first thing you see is a poster sized very high quality stock color printed piece of collateral about the HA-1; a nice preview with pictures and presentation of notable features, a nice touch.  You also get the standard HDTracks 15% off coupon postcard (digital15) for your first HDTracks purchase.  Once removing those you are presented with the manual in an inset of the packing foam insert.  This packing foam is not standard styro like much HT gear is shipped with (even pieces costing upward of $10k!) that is prone to breaking, rather the very permanent, robust and protective single pieces of foam, one for the top and one for the bottom pieces, so the HA-1 is protected on all sides by at least 2.5 inches of very good foam.  Unless the carrier ignores the bright red fragile stickers on the exterior of the box and runs over it with his truck, this unit will not be damaged in shipping, nice job on that Oppo!  This is an often, inexplicably overlooked component in the Hi-Fi world (or was)... making sure that the product makes it safe to its ultimate owner, where said owner can easily reuse the packing for storage, moving, or resale as we often do :D.

 

Removing the top piece of foam, you are presented with the HA-1 in the center, yet it cannot be seen as it is 100% enclosed in a very finely woven white cloth bag for protection, another nice touch.

 

To one side is a nice thick (2mm) black box with a slide off top (another 2mm of thickness) so again easy to re-use, which contains all of the accessories, which include:

 

  1. The excellent silver machined from one piece aluminum remote with the battery already installed, a CR2032 cell.  Replacement is covered in the manual, please note that it take a good amount of force with the paper clip to eject the battery compartment the first time but it does work!  Just be sure not to apply any pressure to the black plastic tray whatsoever when trying to get leverage as you will work against the tray having clearance to pop out.
  2. A gold plated 3.5mm to 6.3mm(1/4" to 1/8") SE plug.
  3. A gold plated Bluetooth screw on antenna with a male RP-SMA connector.  The use of this industry standard (for wi-fi) connector means that extension cords or even potentially gain boost antennas can be used, although bluetooth specific boost antenna's are rare relative to wife boost antennas.  I will experiment with some of my wifi boost antennas in a later review, it would be nice to have your iPod in your pocket while anywhere in the house and control the output of the system.   Sidebar on whole house BT use (Click to show)
    This is useful if say your HA-1 is part of your primary multizone HT system that has zones throughout the house as mine does (currently via a 4 zone Pioneer Elite SC-68 used as a pre-amp, even though I have at least one dedicated receiver in every room of the house as well, and many more in boxes :)).
    It won't be the best quality, but sometimes you just want the same tunes throughout the house for get togethers, etc. so this is a nice feature it it works as I am thinking it might.
  4. A 5 ft (usable) standard 3 conductor 14 gauge pretty stout power cable.  I tried a Pangea AC-9 I picked up in a package deal that I have plugged into a Belkin PF60 which then goes through a pro-grade managed APCC Smart-UPS and it works just fine.   Aftermarket power cables is the least important and cost inefficient step of addressing input power quality, read here for more. (Click to show)
    As a side note, plugging an expensive power cable into the wall accomplishes nothing other than aesthetics from an EE perspective, given you still have the relatively terrible power delivery system starting at the wall socket all the way to the power station that you haven't dealt with.  Rather one should pay attention to power delivery from the wall with something that can isolate (like a finely tuned APCC unit or other regulated power source which included a LARGE amount of capacitance or even better a very robust battery). The PF60 is a bargain device at $100 when I got it (rather 6 of them) where they are $200 now where you get 13 plugs, some power filter voodoo, but more importantly triggers and programmable delays/behaviors for all plugs and a visual indication of line voltage among other things... and many other nice features... but that is a review for another time :D.

     

 

Now for the main event, removing the 13.0 lbs, 5.9 kg,  HA-1 from the box.  This is a satisfying after the long wait from its first introduction which for me for me was 5 months ago at at CES 2014.  There isn't a single mark, smudge, or fingerprint on the chassis, and mine was manufactured in May 2014(or so says the sticker), so I literally have one right from the factory floor that looks as though it was immaculately conceived.  With dimensions of 10.0 x 4.8 x 12.2 inches, or 254 x 80 x 333 mm it will be interesting to figure out how to integrate into my HT stack, but I think it will be worth it to figure it out.  I have powered it on, and yep it works, where I am first greeted with the Oppo logo via an extremely clear and nice display (don't know the tech on the display yet but will find out), and then it defaults to the status screen.

 

The Oppo HA-1 is sleek, very well made, I can find no fault whatsoever to complain about at this price point with this feature set so far.  I won't use the word giant killer, but I will say that for the money I cannot remember the last time I purchased a piece of gear new at full MSRP and was this satisfied with the value of the purchase!

 

That is it for my first draft of part 1(still to be edited but other duties call, so please forgive and spelling or grammar issues), but I will say that I tested it with my LCD-3's and with my Roxanne's using some hi-res classical music, and it does indeed sound fantastic.  More to come! 


Edited by craftyhack - 6/1/14 at 6:06pm
post #549 of 4750
Quote:
Originally Posted by craftyhack View Post
 

FYI, although I received my HA-1 on Friday, I have only opened the box, not yet even plugged it in.  An unfortunately collision with other things (Sporting Clays tournament was this weekend, the NCSA US Open is next weekend, plus a presentation to prepare to many hundreds for next Tues and Wed, and then of course life stuff!).  Same thing with my AK240.

 

First a question.  You can see what cans, IEMs, preamps, amps, and DACs I own in my inventory (plus I have JRiver of course).  I am looking to add to my collection for review purposes, and I want to add what are considered the standards as defined by what most people own that purchase this price level of gear.  For example, I am going to pickup a set of AlphaDogs, PM-1's, HE-400s, 500's, 560's, or HE6, HD-800, etc.  For amps I am thinking WA7, Asgard 2, Burson, Soloist, etc., etc.  So as not to derail this thread please PM me with your thoughts on what "the standards" are so I can improve my reviews.  My other task is to get good gear to perform reviews with, including cables, transparent cables switchers/preamps, measuring devices (something like what is used to make binaural recordings would be awesome with mics to measure db, freq response, etc. from the listeners perspective with the cans on their head).  I will soon post this request in an appropriate forum after I have done some more research with some more detail and proposals, this is just a preliminary request for feedback for those interested in this particular amp.

 

That said I will start with my unboxing impressions.  Pics and a vid or two will be inserted later when I have my photo/vid station setup(backdrop, lighting w/gels, camera gear with right lenses and flashes figured out and timed, etc.).

 

Opening the box the first thing you see is a poster sized very high quality stock color printed piece of collateral about the HA-1; a nice preview with pictures and presentation of notable features, a nice touch.  You also get the standard HDTracks 15% off coupon postcard (digital15) for your first HDTracks purchase.  Once removing those you are presented with the manual in an inset of the packing foam insert.  This packing foam is not standard styro like much HT gear is shipped with (even pieces costing upward of $10k!) that is prone to breaking, rather the very permanent, robust and protective single pieces of foam, one for the top and one for the bottom pieces, so the HA-1 is protected on all sides by at least 2.5 inches of very good foam.  Unless the carrier ignores the bright red fragile stickers on the exterior of the box and runs over it with his truck, this unit will not be damaged in shipping, nice job on that Oppo!  This is an often, inexplicably overlooked component in the Hi-Fi world (or was)... making sure that the product makes it safe to its ultimate owner, where said owner can easily reuse the packing for storage, moving, or resale as we often do :D.

 

Removing the top piece of foam, you are presented with the HA-1 in the center, yet it cannot be seen as it is 100% enclosed in a very finely woven white cloth bag for protection, another nice touch.

 

To one side is a nice thick (2mm) black box with a slide off top (another 2mm of thickness) so again easy to re-use, which contains all of the accessories, which include:

 

  1. The excellent silver machined from one piece aluminum remote with the battery already installed, a CR2032 cell.  Replacement is covered in the manual, please note that it take a good amount of force with the paper clip to eject the battery compartment the first time but it does work!  Just be sure not to apply any pressure to the black plastic tray whatsoever when trying to get leverage as you will work against the tray having clearance to pop out.
  2. A gold plated 3.5mm to 6.3mm(1/4" to 1/8") SE plug.
  3. A gold plated Bluetooth screw on antenna with a male RP-SMA connector.  The use of this industry standard (for wi-fi) connector means that extension cords or even potentially gain boost antennas can be used, although bluetooth specific boost antenna's are rare relative to wife boost antennas.  I will experiment with some of my wifi boost antennas in a later review, it would be nice to have your iPod in your pocket while anywhere in the house and control the output of the system.  This is useful if say your HA-1 is part of your primary multizone HT system that has zones throughout the house as mine does (currently via a 4 zone Pioneer Elite SC-68 used as a pre-amp, even though I have at least one dedicated receiver in every room of the house as well, and many more in boxes :)).  It won't be the best quality, but sometimes you just want the same tunes throughout the house for get togethers, etc. so this is a nice feature it it works as I am thinking it might.
  4. A 5 ft (usable) standard 3 conductor 14 gauge pretty stout power cable.  I tried a Pangea AC-9 I picked up in a package deal that I have plugged into a Belkin PF60 which then goes through a pro-grade managed APCC Smart-UPS and it works just fine.  As a side note, plugging an expensive power cable into the wall accomplishes nothing other than aesthetics from an EE perspective, given you still have the relatively terrible power delivery system starting at the wall socket all the way to the power station that you haven't dealt with.  Rather one should pay attention to power delivery from the wall with something that can isolate (like a finely tuned APCC unit or other regulated power source which included a LARGE amount of capacitance or even better a very robust battery). The PF60 is a bargain device at $100 when I got it (rather 6 of them) where they are $200 now where you get 13 plugs, some power filter voodoo, but more importantly triggers and programmable delays/behaviors for all plugs and a visual indication of line voltage among other things... and many other nice features... but that is a review for another time :D.

 

Now for the main event, removing the 13.0 lbs, 5.9 kg,  HA-1 from the box.  This is a satisfying after the long wait from its first introduction which for me for me was 5 months ago at at CES 2014.  There isn't a single mark, smudge, or fingerprint on the chassis, and mine was manufactured in May 2014(or so says the sticker), so I literally have one right from the factory floor that looks as though it was immaculately conceived.  With dimensions of 10.0 x 4.8 x 12.2 inches, or 254 x 80 x 333 mm it will be interesting to figure out how to integrate into my HT stack, but I think it will be worth it to figure it out.  I have powered it on, and yep it works, where I am first greeted with the Oppo logo via an extremely clear and nice display (don't know the tech on the display yet but will find out), and then it defaults to the status screen.

 

The Oppo HA-1 is sleek, very well made, I can find no fault whatsoever to complain about at this price point with this feature set so far.  I won't use the word giant killer, but I will say that for the money I cannot remember the last time I purchased a piece of gear new at full MSRP and was this satisfied with the value of the purchase!

 

That is it for my first draft of part 1(still to be edited but other duties call, so please forgive and spelling or grammar issues), but I will say that I tested it with my LCD-3's and with my Roxanne's using some hi-res classical music, and it does indeed sound fantastic.  More to come! 


A lot of words for taking something out of its box.

post #550 of 4750
Quote:
Originally Posted by lukeap69 View Post

how is it compared to the Burson?

They sounded pretty damn similar. I couldn't tell them apart. The oppo has more options/connections I'd use, so the burson went bye bye. 

 

That guys review of talking it out of the box, makes me cringe what he'll write when he turns it on..... 80 pages later... lol

post #551 of 4750
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lukeap69 View Post

how is it compared to the Burson?

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGovernment View Post
 

They sounded pretty damn similar. I couldn't tell them apart. The oppo has more options/connections I'd use, so the burson went bye bye. 

 

That guys review of talking it out of the box, makes me cringe what he'll write when he turns it on..... 80 pages later... lol

Dito.  I tried both out of the HA-1 dac, and both amp sections out of the NF-DAC.  Volume matched, they sounded nearly indistinguishable.  I would hope for that with good, discrete design, class A solid state amps.  The DACs had very, very slight differences - more noticeable than any slight differences between the amps.


Edited by aamefford - 6/1/14 at 5:27pm
post #552 of 4750
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGovernment View Post
 

That guys review of talking it out of the box, makes me cringe what he'll write when he turns it on..... 80 pages later... lol

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Headphoner View Post
 


A lot of words for taking something out of its box.

 

LOL, point taken, thanks for the feedback!  I used to write for different publications in a different time, and much of that audience enjoyed "the journey" but without the pics and video's inserted it is nothing but a WOT, I agree.  And, there was a length requirement for post of which the style I am working for here (a detailed review).  I will also have an executive summary review that I will compile from the high points of the detailed one once complete  for those that don't have the time or inclination to read through the long stuff, kinda like CNet does.  Also, my OT side bars, once edited will be hidden unless you click on them, I can at least fix that right now.  So I take it from the 90's until now, brevity is the order of the day more frequently vs. painting a picture with a WOT :P, things have changed where there is so much more to do, and social media/email proliferation/smart phones(bringing all of that stuff with you) has basically created a new state of mind that would have been called ADD 20 years ago... at least that is what has happened to me!!  Reading and writing gear reviews in the 90's was like reading short novel', although I certainly enjoyed reading them when they were talking about gear I would never be able to afford the subjects of the review.  That is the "value" of the long ones is if done right, you feel like you kinda did buy and own that $250,000 set of speakers that you just read about.  Because of an article like that I read about Veritas 2.8s almost 20 years ago, I never forgot them and finally got a pair a year or two ago for a fifth of their price then, the story was that well written.  I strive to be able to be in that ball park some day.  The same ball park as Jason from Schiit, reading his serial novel about Schiit is a hell of a lot of fun!

 

I used to be an author for IBM redbooks and manuals for performing maintenance on Naval nuclear reactors in addition to my digitaltheater.com reviews and blogs, so yes, I can be verbose and too detailed (if you have ever read an IBM redbook from the 90's you will know what I mean).  I will work on that!

 

Let me know if the writing style sucks too and I will work on it... as my plans are to combine all of my parts into a review to post on the review product page, and I don't want to stack sh*t, as it doesn't stack very well ;).  Don't worry about grammar, mixed tense issues, confused subjects vs. predicates, etc., I will edit those out.

 

Basically any feedback, no matter how harsh, is appreciated!!


Edited by craftyhack - 6/1/14 at 5:58pm
post #553 of 4750

OK, original post edited with side bar hiders, does that help a bit until I can add pics and break up the text even more?

post #554 of 4750
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGovernment View Post
 

 

I have both the TH900's and hd800's with the oppo. Both sound awesome. I sold my burson 160d a few days after getting the oppo. Mine gets hot but it's not crazy hot. The Fostex's sound awesome and the 800's sound great even on normal gain with 1/4. I'm very happy with the oppo!

 

Thanks for the quick impression.

Btw, do you have the chance to compare the balance headphone out vs the single-ended out for HD800?

Interested in getting the HA-1 for my HD800 and LCD-X

post #555 of 4750
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGovernment View Post

 

I have both the TH900's and hd800's with the oppo. Both sound awesome. I sold my burson 160d a few days after getting the oppo. Mine gets hot but it's not crazy hot. The Fostex's sound awesome and the 800's sound great even on normal gain with 1/4. I'm very happy with the oppo!

 



Thank you government. You may have just sold me. Very grateful for the feedback.
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