TheBit Opus#1s

Rating:
4.5/5,
  1. ExpatinJapan
    Power and purity
    Written by ExpatinJapan
    Published May 19, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Easy UI, great sound, powerful enough
    Cons - none
    Opus#1S Dap Review
    - Expatinjapan


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    Opus#1S Dap review
    - expatinjapan
    http://www.audio-opus.com/?page_id=17532

    The Opus#1S is the next version of the Opus#1. A spectacular and easy to use dap with a linear sound and efficient and speedy UI. The Opus#1S builds on the success of its predecessor.

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    Opus#1S and Campfire Audio Comet

    See the earlier Opus#1 dap here:
    https://www.headpie.net/2016/07/the-bit-opus1-dap-review-expatinjapan.html

    Head pie has also reviewed the Opus#3:
    https://www.headpie.net/2017/06/the-audio-opus-opus3-dap-review.html

    And the Opus#2:
    https://www.headpie.net/2017/09/opus2-dap-review-expatinjapan.html

    Unboxing

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    Opus#1S and Jomo Haka

    Opus#1S case

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    Opus#1S dap and Jomo 6R with Double Helix Cable (balanced 2.5mm).


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    Opus#1S and Shozy Hibiki Special Edition

    Build
    `Enhanced ABS Solid Body and Tempered Glass
    Available in 2 colors Lapis Blue and Palatinate Purple`
    Build as in all Opus daps I have is solid and built to last. I have encountered no issues with either the body, buttons, screen or Micro SD slot to date.

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    Opus#1S and Campfire Audio Polaris

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    Build is solid and sturdy.

    This is the fourth Opus dap I have had the pleasure of carting around town with no issues in its construction. Above it looks likes it is in peril, but is in fact a reflection of a tree.

    User interface
    The Opus#1S echoes the UI of the other Opus daps, straight forward, simple, efficient, fast and very easy to use.
    Simple swipe down Android style for access to shortcut icons, and also to the settings.
    On the player menu accessed through a three lined icon in the top left there is `songs, albums, artists, genres, folders, favorite, playlists`
    One can also swipe left or right to change the track.

    With the swipe down menu it also shows the Settings cog icon. Tapping on this opens up the various options available:
    Device: Screen (brightness, auto display off etc), Audio (equalizer, gapless), Output (Line out, L/R Balance, Gain L/M/H), Timer (sleep), USB (connect mode MTP/charging, USB DAC).
    Personal: Language and input.
    System: Date & time, Storage, Initialize, Update, information.

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    USB DAC function

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    ifi Audio Nano iDSD Black Label and Opus#1S to Campfire Audio Orion.

    *Insert Star Wars prequel #1 `Its working, its working` gif.

    Moar specs and stuff


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    Specifications
    24bit / 192kHz High Resolution Sound
    Cirrus Logic CS43198 x 2EA Dual DAC
    ARM Cortex-A9 1.4GHz, Quad-Core CPU DDR3 1GB
    SNR 123dB, THD+N 0.0007%, Crosstalk – 140dB, Output 3.1Vmrs ( Unbalanced )
    SNR 125dB, THD+N 0.0005%, Crosstalk – 142dB, Output 3.4Vmrs ( Balanced )
    Low-clock-jitter sensitivity: 50ps(Typ)
    4inch TFT Wide Touch Display (480 x 800), IPS Panel
    WAV, FLAC, ALAC, AIFF, DSD, WMA,
    MP3, OGG, APE(Normal, High, Fast)
    Internal Memory 32GB
    External Micro SD Card Memory 256GB x 2EA
    Enhanced ABS Solid Body and Tempered Glass
    Ultra Power Saving Mode

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    The audioopus/thebit dap family.
    Anti clockwise from 1 o`clock. Opus#1, Opus#1S, Opus#3 and Opus#2.



    Sound

    My brief Fujiya Avic show impressions from late 2017.
    I cannot write much more without going into inaccurate imagination territory.

    I did spend some time with both though.

    Using the Andromeda with stock Litz SE cable to try to stay semi reference for the day.

    I really enjoyed the S1 and thought it was a step up from the #1 . Perhaps incorporating a few tricks from #3 and esp #2 daps.

    But as always its a matter of taste.

    I wrote above
    “I A/B’d the original Opus#1 with the new Opus#1 (and volume checked with a spl meter).
    As we know the original Opus#1 is quite linear, the new version of the Opus#1 mark 2 is more dynamic, deeper, fuller and bolder.”

    But show impressions, fast and only surface can be informative, yet also not the be all and end all.

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    Photo from the Fujiya Avic Headphone show in Tokyo, Japan. Late 2017.

    Further listening revealed that the Opus#1S is in my opinion a step up from the Opus#1, not necessarily only in sound, but more importantly in power.
    Users in the prehistoric age of portable audio used to rubber band strap portable amplifiers to boost their players which at that time lacked decent power.
    These days daps generally have oodles of power and it seems to be increasing as time goes by and each company tries to create a one stop shop dap.
    The Opus#1S certainly benefits from the extra power and as one who likes to have plenty of body and layering to my music without having to stretch the volume and gain controls to their furthest extension.
    The Opus#1 was no slouch and I still remember my `wow` response when first coupling it with Campfire Audio Jupiter IEM.
    The Opus#1S is more neutral tuned dap whereas the Opus#1S tilts a bit towards the warm side, though not excessively so and never veers into muddy territory.

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    The Opus#1:
    Cirrus Logic CS4398 x 2EA Dual DAC
    ARM Cortex-A9 1.4GHz, Quad-Core CPU DDR3 1GB
    The Opus#1S
    Cirrus Logic CS43198 x 2EA Dual DAC
    ARM Cortex-A9 1.4GHz, Quad-Core CPU DDR3 1GB
    The Opus#3:
    Burr-Brown PCM1792A DAC
    ARM Cortex-A9 1.4GHz, Quad-Core CPU & DDR3 1GB
    The Opus#2:
    SABRE32 ES9018K2M x 2EA Dual DAC
    ARM Cortex-A9 1.4GHz, Quad-Core CPU DDR3 1GB

    All of the Opus Daps have 2 ohms output impedance on the single ended jack, and 1 ohm output impedance on the balanced jack. I often use multi driver BA IEMs and find I get a truer response and result by using the balanced jack. Those with single dynamic drivers or headphones would generally be ok with either.
    The 2ohm jack/port is also more forgiving for the lower priced earphones also. Sacrificing some detail for smoothness.

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    Opus#1S and Campfire Audio Polaris

    Further on the sound....
    I would recommend reading the earlier reviews of the Opus#1, Opus#3 and Opus#2 featured on Head pie as they have some good insightful comparisons of the earlier models previous to the Opus#1S.
    To quote from the earlier Opus#3 and Opus#2 reviews:
    "I found the Opus#3 to be more resolving overall.
    The Opus#1 has a vocals forward signature at ordinary volumes, whereas with the Opus#3 seems the music is up with the vocals, making the sound more engaging and richer and there is more definition.
    The sound stage on the Opus#3 is much larger than on Opus#1, on height and width. Making the Opus#3 more exciting, intimate and engaging. But its incremental and not absolute.
    The Opus#3 sound stage is increased in the width, slightly in the height whilst not much more in the depth.
    The sound stage increases when using the balanced out, as does instrument separation.
    They both retain the characteristic smoothness of the Opus brand, more so when using the 2 ohm single ended out, things get a bit more apart when using the balanced out.
    Instrument separation is cleaner on the Opus#3.
    When I turn up the volume louder the Opus#3 seems to cope better with it.
    In summary, its very close to call in terms of sonics but the Opus#3 just pulls ahead on the single end, and more so on the balanced out.
    In terms of extended listening sessions I would pick the Opus#3 over the Opus#1.
    The Burr-Brown dac just adding that extra little something."

    Opus#2 review 'Sound is neutral towards reference with a hint of warmth here and there at times, it packs detail and resolution with a deep depth of musicality that at no times alters its intent as an accurate player. The instrument separation is brilliant, and with a sound stage that doesn't disappoint'.
    'The Opus#2 departs from the earlier models in its ability to achieve a wide sound stage, in height, width and depth, its speed, effortlessness, detail, neutral transparency and separation.
    Highly resolving and detailed without using any tricks of boosted treble.
    The Opus#2 veers slightly onto a warm edge at times, but my emphasis is on slightly, If anything it gives a sense of fullness, of weight and gravity.
    It comes across as neutral, transparent and all those other goody good good audio buzzwords we like to hear and read being bandied about. But the Opus#2 is the real deal in this matter.'

    So where does the Opus#1S fit in all this?

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    The Opus#1S has more power than its predecessor and that alone is worth the extra investment in my opinion. One cannot have too much power, better to have oodles in reserve rather than stretching the machine so that its sounds like it is straining to perform.
    If I can run most earphones etc on low or medium gain I am happy, rather than having to max out on high gain all the time.

    Whilst the original Opus#1 is no slouch itself and generally has a more linear, detailed, fast and pleasant sound quality, the Opus#3 has a more detailed and extended high end, the Opus#2 the flagship generally neutral, layered with a bit of warmth in the low end.

    I have not heard the Metal Opus#1 as of the time of this writing.

    The Opus#1S fits nicely into the scheme of the line up, adding as mentioned before more power into the mix, depth and a musicality which could be described as dynamic.

    It is full, deep (one could use the term warm though not entirely all of the story - a little bump to the mids perhaps), smooth with a richness, larger sound stage and a nice blackish back ground.

    If you like a bit of spirit, a little bounce in your step on a sunny day the Opus#1S would be a good companion. It doesn't lack anything from the other Opus daps, of course it is true they scale up as you go but the Opus#1S holds its own and delivers a beautiful, full, accurate sound with a low floor noise, decent sound stage and a slight warmth of mids.

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    Opus#1S and Kinera SEED (early prototype build).

    Opus daps screen and size compared
    The lighting isnt ideal, but you can get the general idea.
    Opus#1, Opus#1S (shown without case)
    Opus#3, Opus#2

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    Opus daps 1, 3 and 2
    (Opus 1S is the same size as Opus#1, this photo is from the Opus#2 review)
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    Price
    The Opus#1S is US$399.00 from Musicteck.
    https://shop.musicteck.com/collections/opus
    The earlier Opus#1 can be also purchased from Musicteck for US$249.00.

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    Overall
    The Opus#1S is more warmer in the mids compared to the earlier Opus#1 which is more of neutral sound. It is not to say that the Opus#1S fully departs from a linear or neutral sound, just that it has some extra smoothness, warmth, depth and energy.
    The Opus#1S is more powerful than the earlier edition.

    It is a dap that is a pure player, no wifi or internet connection. It has internal memory and also two Micro SD slots. Enough for a sizable music library on the go.

    As a stand alone player it is a pleasure to use from the simple UI, selection of settings, size, sound and overall ease of use.
    In the market of today it has a few competitors of varying sizes and sound signatures. Opus#1 or Opus#1S would be pleasing for most entering into mid fi territory.
    One must as usual do their reading and research themselves and find the dap which suits best their needs in term of function and sonic signature.

    The Opus#1S, smooth, deep, lush and rich, decent sound stage, a touch of mids, room for memory expansion, a stand alone player ie no wifi, black back ground and an easy UI makes it one of the main choices out of many options for a decent player on the go to enjoy the universality of the musicality of music.

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    Opus#1S dap and Jomo Haka
  2. Wiljen
    Opus #1s - An endgame DAP for those on a budget
    Written by Wiljen
    Published Apr 25, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - fabulous sound quality, more than ample output power, good battery life, lots of storage, good UI.
    Cons - no Bluetooth or wireless, so no streaming options. Strictly a file player.
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    I was originally sent the Opus #1s by Ngoshawk to take a look at. His comments about the little player had intrigued me as he had fallen in love with the Opus #2 and said the #1s wasn’t far behind it and the price was more in my range than the #2. After listening to the Opus #1s for less than a week, I asked Ngoshawk where I could buy it and a deal was quickly struck. In some ways, that may spoil a bit of the suspense here, but the Opus #1s is going to be a polarizing unit so read on.


    Build:


    The #1s comes in either blue or purple frame but honestly the color is very limited as it covers the sides and the beveled edge of the front and rear. The drawback is the body is abs plastic instead of a metal frame but the unit feels sturdy in hand and weight is heavier than most.


    The rear surface is black glass with a cross hatched pattern that makes the plate appear gray from a distance.

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    while the majority of the front face is glass with the 4 inch screen taking up a good 90% of the overall space available. This is a nice change of pace as some others in this class do not utilize the screen real estate nearly as cleanly. The screen has a 480*800 resolution so not the highest of the current DAP offerings, but plenty to display album art without blur and text is crisp and sharp. Also worth noting, the screen supports a fairly wide viewing angle unlike several others I have recently tested that washed out pretty severely unless viewed directly.


    The unit ships with a screen protector installed which helps and a really well made leather case is available albeit at an additional cost. I highly recommend buying the case (unlike the Onkyo I recently reviewed) as fit and the protection it provides are great without marring any of the controls. The only drawback to the case is again it blocks the sd-card slots so must be removed to change cards.


    The bottom of the player has a single micro-USB port to handle the charging and data transfer details. The port is nicely recessed to give a bit of added stability.

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    On the left side of the player, dual micro-sd card slots sit at the bottom and are neatly covered with a panel that fits flush with the frame. At the top left are the volume controls which have a nice tactile click that makes it easy to use in a pocket.

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    The top of the right side of the player has the play controls (back, play/pause, forward) again with good tactile click functionality.

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    The top of the unit has the 3.5mm Single ended output on the left, the balanced 2.5mm output near the center and clearly labeled as balanced out. And the power button on the far right. Overall the layout is very clean and functional.
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    Internals:
    The #1s uses an A9 processor at 1.4ghz with 1gb of RAM to handle the OS duties. This would be on the low side for a full android implementation but for the stripped down UI on the #1s it is plenty.


    DAC functions are handled by a pair of Cirrus Logic 43198 chips that support up to 24/192 and supports most popular file types including MQA and DSD.


    Battery life is very good with all day playback between charges being normal. If extremely high impedance headphones or low sensitivity headphones are used battery life will drop accordingly. I was able to get 6+ hours using the Fostex t50rp at normal listening levels and that is quite a feat as the same headphone drained the M3s flat in a bit over 4.


    #1s supports usage as a USB DAC, as well as use as a transport to another DAC/AMP through its micro-USB via a usb otg cable.


    UI:


    Thebit states that the firmware is Android but other than a few telltale hints, you’d be hard pressed to tell it by looking at it. The main screen has the first hint of android in its top bar.

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    This looks typical of android and shows status icons for volume, card status, battery etc. When you start the player, it first goes through scanning the sd-cards (minor annoyance as it does this every time). It will display the main page and show a turning gear in the upper bar slightly right of the center part to signify the card scan. The second hint is that the options menu is accessed by swiping down from the top to open a larger version of the top bar with line out, equalizer, sleep, repeat, shuffle, and brightness controls.
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    A gear in the top right corner opens the settings menu that allows control of screen, eq, gapless playback, line out, and gain, along with setting the time, usb mode, and storage options. Firmware updates are simple to install. The firmware is placed at the root of an SD card and from the settings menu, the update option starts the process.


    Immediately under the top bar, at the left is another hint. The three horizontal bar icon that opens the file menu. This gives you the options to choose between artists, playlists, titles, genres, folders, or favorites.

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    A proper search function would be very appreciated as that is the one feature the UI lacks that would make use easier.


    The main screen provides all the details of title, artist, bit rate, and length as well as the ability to scroll within a track. The front and back function is provided on screen as well as play/pause in addition to the physical buttons on the side. The downside to this is that playback can jump around when the DAP is in a shirt pocket unless the screen is turned off.


    The UI doesn’t pack a ton of features as no options for wireless, Bluetooth, loading android apps, or streaming are provided. The upside of this is that the UI is fast and rock solid stable. I have not had a single crash in the entire 2 months I have owned and been using the #1s which puts it in a league apart from most others I have tested.

    Sound:


    The focus of the Opus #1s is clearly on sound quality instead of optional features and when you make a conscious decision to focus on one aspect at the exclusion of others, you better get it right. The Opus #1s delivers sound that few other DAPs can match. Sound is thick, lifelike, and very smooth without masking detail or losing clarity. Soundstage is spacious and instrument separation is on par with home hi-fi component DACs. I could happily substitute the #1s for my Bifrost and never miss the later. Output power is good with single ended devices and fantastic with balanced connections. I had no trouble powering any headphone I wanted with the #1s without the need for an external amp (although battery life does take a hit).


    The #1s is so smooth that at times it can feel like it lacks extension. With more listening you realize the extension isn’t lacking, it is just so organic and smooth that it lulls you into a false sense that it must be rolled-off. The #1s has good dynamics and can hit on both ends with good authority when called upon but the real center of the #1s is the mids.


    Lows are full bodied and are crisp and clean even at the depths of the players extension. At the absolute low end, the player does roll-off a bit but still does a good job of reproducing texture and actual instrumentation and not just thump. Bass quantity manages to walk the line between solid bass performance and bass bleed into the mids. Sub bass has authority without the mid-bass taking over the signature and making the player overly warm.


    Mids are slightly forward with lots of detail and good dynamic range. The mids allow vocalists nuance and emotions to show through the instrumentation in the background and produces a listening experience few other daps have come close to.


    Treble has good extension with ample air and sparkle while still maintaining good detail. There is a hint of grain to the lower treble but it smooths out as it climbs into the upper registers. Overall, nothing to complain about at all at this price point.


    Soundstage is hard to define as it is certainly wider than deep but manages to maintain considerably better than average instrument separation and imaging even with the limited overall size of the stage. Overall, the soundstage could be thought of as a theater in the round with a decidedly intimate feel while still maintaining excellent realism.

    The words to define the sound of the Opus #1s is natural, smooth, organic, and emotional. The nice thing is that this allows the #1s to pair effortlessly with a wide variety of headphones and earphones and sound equally good with all of them.


    I found the #1s to be equally at home with the Campfire Comet, the Brainwavz b400, and the Magaosi K5 in ears as well as easily driving the Fostex t50rp and still being very pleasant with the Sennheiser HD700. Truly a rare bird in the ease with which it pairs.


    Comparisons:


    To my ear, the closest competitors to the Opus #1s are the Cayin N5ii and the AK70Mk2.


    The Cayin N5ii is a bit thinner and more analytical than the #1s and is more neutral when compared to the slightly warm sound of the #1s. Most other factors are near equal with soundstages and instrument separation being on-par with both. I could be happy with either the N5ii or the #1s as both are truly stellar, but the #1s signature makes it easier to listen for extended periods for pleasure as it is smoother than the N5ii.


    The AK70Mk2 is the DAP by which most others are judged for me as it does so many things well that it is tough to beat. It combines a sound that is near the Opus #1s with the features of the N5ii and an intuitive UI that bests either of the other two. On sound alone, I think the Opus is better, when you combine everything, I still think A&K is the benchmark. One more update to the Opus and it may well catch the A&K as both TheBit and Cayin are getting closer to that level of performance with each new iteration.


    Opposite the N5ii comparison, I find the Opus #1s to be a bit more neutral than the Shanling M3s as the Shanling has a bit too forward lower mids for my tastes. The #1s also has more detail and better dynamics than the M3s. The differences are not huge, but I favor the Opus. The other big drawbacks on the M3s is single card slot and poorly implemented display.

    Conclusions:


    As stated at the start, the Opus #1s is going to be a polarizing device. On the plus side, if you (like me) listen to music from your personal library and are not interested in streaming or Bluetooth headphones, this is the best sounding dap that $400 will buy. As a matter of fact, it may be the best sounding dap that $700 will buy as I think you have to step up substantially in price to something like the ibasso Dx200 to see a distinct improvement in sound quality over the #1s. On the flip side, if you intend to stream audio from the web or use Bluetooth headphones, then the Opus #1 is not for you. I chose to purchase the Opus #1s as for me, the number one pursuit in this hobby is for that perfect sound and the #1s comes as close to that as my budget will permit.

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  3. subguy812
    Opus#1S
    Written by subguy812
    Published Apr 25, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Rich, Full Sound, Powerful
    Cons - Not feature rich
    The Opus #1S

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    Opus #1S

    Purchase Here: Musicteck

    Manufacturer Website: the bit Audio Opus

    Also for sale here: Amazon

    A Little Technical Stuff:
    • 24bit / 192kHz High Resolution Sound
    • Cirrus Logic CS43198 x 2EA Dual DAC
    • ARM Cortex-A9 1.4GHz, Quad-Core CPU DDR3 1GB
    • SNR 123dB, THD+N 0.0007%, Crosstalk – 140dB, Output 3.1Vmrs (Unbalanced)
    • SNR 125dB, THD+N 0.0005%, Crosstalk – 142dB, Output 3.4Vmrs (Balanced)
    • Low-clock-jitter sensitivity: 50ps (Typ)
    • 4inch TFT Wide Touch Display (480 x 800), IPS Panel
    • WAV, FLAC, ALAC, AIFF, DSD, WMA,
    • MP3, OGG, APE (Normal, High, Fast)
    • Internal Memory 32GB
    • External Micro SD Card Memory 256GB x 2EA
    • Enhanced ABS, Solid Body and Tempered Glass
    • Ultra-Power Saving Mode
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    Opus #1S

    -MRSP: $399/ No case is included, but they can be purchased for $40

    The Opus#1S is the second generation of their successful and budget-conscious Opus#1. I never had the pleasure to hear the Opus#1. I jumped straight to their TOTL Opus#2 which became my state of the art reference DAP. I read so many positive comments about the Opus#1 that when the opportunity was presented to me to review the Opus#1S, I seized the opportunity. Upon opening the packaging and beholding the player I was immediately struck by the rich burgundy color, it exuded quality. I have recently reviewed DAP’s that focused on clarity and transparency and based on the Opus#1 comments I was sort of expecting a neutralish, balanced sound, instead, on first listen I was presented with a lush, rich and full sound. The richness does not detract from the details, but the overall aura is rich and full.

    For the most part, the overall experience with the Opus#1S has been positive. If someone already owns the Opus#1 should they pay the upgraded price for a 1S? I can’t answer that question, but I will lay out a brief overview that hopefully helps you make that decision.

    A Little Marketing Hype:

    Audio Specification
    • DAC: CS43198 x 2EA
    • SNR (Balanced): 125dB @ 1KHz
    • SNR (Unbalanced): 123dB @ 1KHz
    • Crosstalk (Balanced): 142dB @ 1KHz
    • Crosstalk (Unbalanced): 140dB @ 1KHz
    • THD+N (Balanced): 0.0005% @ 1KHz
    • THD+N (Unbalanced): 0.0007% @ 1KHz
    • Output Level: 3.4 Vrms (Balanced, Condition no Load)
    • Output Level: 3.1 Vrms (Unbalanced, Condition no Load)
    General Specifications

    Model: Opus#1s

    Display: 4″ TFT Touch Display (480*800), IPS Panel

    CPU & Memory: ARM Cortex-A9 1.4GHz, Quad-Core Memory (RAM): DDR3 1GB

    Button: Power, Play/Pause, FF, REW Vol+ / Vol-

    Supported Audio Formats: WAV, FLAC, ALAC, AIFF, WMA, DSD, MP3, OGG, APE(Normal, High, Fast)

    EQ & Effect: 10 Band, NORMAL/USER1/2/3/4/5

    Charge & Data Transfer: USB Micro-B input (for charging & data transfer (PC & MAC))
    Connection Mode: MTP (Media Device)

    Outputs: Phone (3.5mm) / Optical Out (3.5mm)
    Balanced Out (2.5mm, 4-pole support)

    Battery: 4,000mAh/3.7V Li-Polymer

    Battery Life (Play) Time & Charge Time: Play: Approximately 11 hours (44.1KHz 16bit, Vol.70, 32ohm, LCD off),
    Charge: 4 hours

    Memory: Built-in 32GB
    External MicroSD (Max 256GB) x2 Supports SDXC exFAT, NTFS

    Clock source/Jitter: 50ps (Typ)

    OS: Android

    Supported OS: Windows 7,8,10 (32/64bit), MAC OS x 10.9 or higher

    Dimensions: 72mm (W) * 112mm (H) * 18mm (D)

    Weight: 190g
    • Enhanced ABS, Solid Body and Tempered Glass
    • Available in 2 colors Lapis Blue and Palatinate Purple
    • Powerful and Refined Sound Building Algorithm with Cirrus Logic CS43198 x 2EA 24-bit Pure Real Dual DAC
    • Huge Memory Expandability to ensure the best Sound Quality
    • High-Res Audio Player requires a huge storage space in order to store and play not compressed studio files. Opus#1 equipped with a 32GB internal memory which can be additionally extended up to 544GB by adding two 256GB MicroSD cards to its slots.
    • Support Internal Memory 32GB + External Micro SD Card Memory 256GB x 2EA

    Unboxing and Accessories:

    In this area, a picture is worth a thousand words so I will include photos to show you what is included with the 1S.

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    The sleeve on the outside of the box is gray with the name Opus#1S on the top and audio-opus on the bottom. The back side includes a full spec sheet, which is fairly thorough for the outside of a box. Under the sleeve is a brick red box.

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    Inside the brick red box is a foam cutout which holds the Opus#1S user information, screen protectors and a USB cable. As usual, with many of the DAP’s recently there is no protection. I seem to mention in all of my reviews that a case is such a nice touch to offer. I believe even a cheap case to at least protect the unit, while you decide on the right case for you, would be an incredibly welcome addition.

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    The case I have is real leather and made by Dignis. It fits snugly and provides access to the USB port on the bottom and markings on the sides so you can see and feel the forward and back buttons or adjust the volume. The case was fabricated perfectly to showcase the design and lines of the DAP. For me, a case is a must have and this case is really nice, at $40 is a bit expensive, but worth it.

    20180112_162324.jpg 20180112_162357.jpg 20180112_162403.jpg

    Design and Build:

    As mentioned above, the Opus#1S is a very classy looking device. Upon reading, it is my understanding that the dimensions are equal to the 1st generation Opus#1. Which would mean if you had the Opus#1 you would be able to use the case you already have on that device. If it is important to be stylistic then you may want to accessorize with a matching color because the original was released in a gunmetal or a gold color. The Opus #1S comes in blue or purple ABS plastic. As previously mentioned the unit I have is in purple, not in the same shade of purple as Barney, that big stupid kid’s show dinosaur, or even the NFL team Vikings for that matter, it is a deep wine color that looks very rich and classy.

    20180112_162804.jpg

    The dimensions are 72mm (W), 112mm (H), 18mm (D) and weighs in at 190g, matching the Opus#1. There is 32GB of internal memory. External memory allows for two MicroSD (Max 256GB) formatted in exFAT, NTFS. Having two MicroSD slots is nice as I have two 256gb cards I use, which gives me my entire collection and space to add more music. It has a pretty good battery life and is rated at 11hours of play time and of course, YMMV, but I found the battery to be more than adequate.

    20180112_170846.jpg

    The Opus#1S has a 3.5 mm / Optical Out (3.5mm) and Balanced Out 2.5mm, 4-pole support. This unit has some very impressive output power through its balanced port at 3.4 Vrms and SE 3.1 Vrms. Included is also an upgraded Cirrus Logic dual DAC, CS43198 while the Opus#1 had a CS4398. The specs have been upgraded on the 1S when compared to the Opus#1. The sound has a black background and I did not detect any hissing.

    20180112_162745.jpg

    The screen of the 1S appears to have had a slight upgrade to the original. It has a TFT touch screen which is the same, however, this is an IPS panel and I can tell you the colors have great depth and a rich visual appeal.

    IMG_20180421_102521.jpg

    The left side of the device has the volume up and down controls and at the bottom of the device is the space for the dual MicroSD cards. The bottom of the Opus#1S has a USB-C slot to be used for charging as well as data transfer. The top of the unit has a 3.5mm headphone jack and a 2.5mm balanced output as well as the power on and off switch. The right side of the DAP has back/forward buttons and also the play/pause button.

    20180112_162624.jpg 20180112_162634.jpg

    The Opus#1S is a music player in the raw sense and doesn’t have a lot of additional features that other DAP’s have, such as Bluetooth and WIFI.

    20180112_171138.jpg

    UI:

    Having the Opus#2 I was already very familiar with the UI. One of the differences between the 1S and the Opus#1 is, it is not necessary to select balanced as an option, just plug a headphone into the balanced output and it is activated. If you have any of the other of the Opus lines you will be very familiar with the UI of the Opus#1S. I will include some photos so you can get the idea of how it visually appears. I will say that A&K and Opus have the most polished UI’s I have encountered.

    20180112_162653.jpg 20180112_171203_HDR.jpg 20180112_171302.jpg 20180112_171327.jpg

    Moving on to the sound:

    A two-word description of the signature of the Opus#1S would be rich and full. It has a black background that is clean across the spectrum, but yet it is so full, so dynamic in its presentation. The soundstage is wide and there is plenty of separation between instruments. To my ears, the stereo separation is actually quite impressive.

    Most times I prefer any warmth or color to be added by my IEM’s or headphones, not by my source, but in the case of the Opus#1S, it is deliciously toned, a tone that engages the listener. The signature reveals details, particularly true with higher bitrate FLAC files, but it is never fatiguing because it is not an analytical sound that bombards you with detail, it is a sexy, powerful sound. The bass response has a wonderful impact as the DAP reveals its masculinity. The bass never bleeds into the other frequencies so there is no muddiness that occurs frequently with warmer signature devices.

    Generally speaking, a rich, robust signature, such as this would better lend itself to brighter or thinner sounding IEM’s or headphones, but magically the Opus#1S seems to do well with all signatures and I enjoyed it with all of the IEM’s and headphones that I plugged into the DAP.

    How does this DAP stack up to some of the other DAPs in my possession?

    20180127_111742-e1524326649976-225x300.jpg 20180127_111810-300x225.jpg

    In comparison to the M2s ($199), I would say that the overall tone is a little similar in that it is a warmer signature, but that is where the similarities end. The Opus#1S has a wider soundstage and is not congested where the M2s is narrower and claustrophobic, by comparison. The power output of the 1S is impressive compared to the M2s. Overall, the 1S gets the nod. Maybe it is not a fair comparison, but I did find the pairing of the M2s was pretty sublime with the EarSonics EM10, and I still feel that way.

    The LGV30 ($800 but easily found for $500), when forced into aux mode, has a clearer, more transparent signature, with less warmth. To have the same level of power you have with the 1S it is necessary to force the V30 into aux or high impedance mode. The stage is equal with the 1S having a greater separation of instruments.

    Differences between the Opus #1S and Shanling M3s are obvious. The #1S is more of a warmish tone, with a rich, full texture. The M3s is more transparent and has a touch more clarity. Not to say the Opus#1s is not clear, because the details are certainly evident. The stage is wide in both and I would consider both winners in this area. The treble extends further in the M3s and has an overall brighter signature. Both are powerful units and I would actually call it a draw. When deciding between these two DAP’s the choice is transparency and clarity over tone. If you are looking for a less colored signature the M3s would be the choice but I prefer the signature of the Opus, mind you, that is my preference, but either player is a fine choice.

    20180209_083319.jpg

    As far as the pairing of IEM’s and headphones I found zero that paired poorly with the Opus#1S.

    My favorite pairings I currently have would be with IE800s and the Custom Art FIBAE 3. The DD of the IE800s has become one of my favorite signatures and the Opus#1S blends so well. The DD bass of the IE800S delivers the goods, and the overall warmth of the of the Opus does not overload the bass levels or cause any congestion. The FIBAE 3 is a clarity monster and the synergy between the two is awesome. The F3 treble tuning aids the extension that the Opus#1S delivers. There are times where two pieces of gear really assist one another in delivering a perfect sound and pairing, the F3 and 1S are one of those relationships, awesome synergy.

    20180112_174552_HDR.jpg

    I sampled the Opus#1S with the Sennheiser HD 6XX and the Meze Neo and both were easily driven and portrayed the sound as it was meant to be portrayed. I was pleased, but not surprised that the Opus#1S was able to drive the HD6XX with ease and showcased its tried and tested signature flawlessly.

    IMG_20180421_102735.jpg

    In Closing:

    I became infatuated with thebit and Opus when I purchased the Opus#2. It has become my reference DAP for my listening and reviews. The Opus#1S is more of a budget-minded DAP without the features that many DAP’s have, even at equal price points. It is a music playing machine with just enough features to support the DAP in doing what it was designed to do, play quality sounding tunes and make it user-friendly.

    The build is plastic, but it does not feel cheaply made as it is high-quality ABS. The design is classy and I love the purple color, it is a rich and deep as the sound that it produces.

    The UI is without gremlins and is, from my experience, on par with the A&K UI which is one of the best.

    The DAP has a rich, full and smooth delivery with lots of power, especially from the balanced output and was able to drive the HD6XX on the SE output.

    Having never heard the original Opus#1, I obviously can’t compare, but based solely on my experience with the Opus#1S I can totally recommend it. If you are not in the need of WIFI or Bluetooth and want a powerful, great sounding DAP, this is the one.
      mgunin and fiascogarcia like this.
  4. PinkyPowers
    From the Chrysalis it Emerges
    Written by PinkyPowers
    Published Apr 17, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Sound. Build. Power. Storage Capacity.
    Cons - Are there any? Read on...
    Opus1S 05.jpg
    ~::I originally published this on THL. Now I wish to share it with my Head-Fi fellows::~

    :: Disclaimer ::

    MusicTeck provided the 1S free of charge for the purpose of my honest review, for good or ill.

    The Opus#1S sells for $399.00 MSRP
    www.MusicTeck.com
    Opus on Amazon
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    I’ve been a staunch supporter of Audio-Opus/theBit since I borrowed a Head-Fier’s Opus#1 for a short stretch back in 2016. It blew me away, coming very close to matching the sound quality of my then reference player, the AK120II. The price disparity between these two devices is no small matter. And it’s not like I hadn’t put other players against the Astell&Kern. I had, and none gave the AK this kind of run. I knew then Opus was a special breed.

    I even finagled a good deal on a unit of my own, just so I’d have one on-hand for reviews.

    When I decided I was ready to upgrade my reference player, I replaced the AK with the Opus#2. It’s a DAP so robust of resolution, and true of tone, that I have a hard time distinguishing between it and my desktop DAC, the NFB-28 by Audio-GD. theBit is one of the few companies that has utterly mastered the SABRE DAC, removing all coldness, and achieving a profoundly natural disposition.

    So when Andrew over at MusicTeck asked if I wanted to review the shiny new Opus#1S, there was clearly only one response in keeping with my doctrine.

    Unboxing 01.jpg
    Unboxing 02.jpg
    Unboxing 03.jpg
    Back 01.jpg
    For fans of the original #1, the 1S will be like fingering an old friend for the first time; familiar, yet weirdly novel. Build, shape, and chassis dimensions are identical. As is button layout. It comes in two color choices: blue and purple. Andrew sent me the purple, and I’m rather smitten with the pigment. DAPs these days tend to be either black or silver, or some alarming member of the primary hues. The purple 1S is dark, subdued, with but a hint of its royal shade. Precisely the way I would have made it.

    Buttons & Ports 03.jpg

    Buttons & Ports 01.jpg

    Buttons & Ports 02.jpg
    Then there’s the case. I have the burgundy leather. Again, this is a refreshing deviation from the norm, and marries handsomely with the purple chassis. Opus cases have always been very good. Genuine leather. Well-dyed. Protective, without interfering with any device function… save for covering up the SD slot. It seems theBit has lost none of its skill. This case is as good as ever, and I’m a big fan.

    Case 01.jpg
    Case 02.jpg
    Software is also mostly the same, though updated to be in line with how the #2 and #3 work. For instance, with the original #1, you had to manually turn on Balanced Output, and then turn it off again before you could use Single-Ended. Now the DAP recognizes when you’ve plugged into the 2.5mm port, and switches over automatically, then back again when you connect to 3.5mm. In other words, like every other balanced DAP on the planet. Way to go, theBit, stepping into the modern era!

    The Opus#1S remains steadfast in its predecessor’s mission: Be a DAP, not a Smartphone. You’ll find no Bluetooth output or WiFi connectivity. You have no access to apps, streaming, video, or the internet in general. This is a music player, and nothing more. Pinky appreciates such singular focus. It can’t help but strengthen the final product.

    DAPs 01.jpg
    DAPs 02.jpg
    Although perhaps not the highest pixel-count, this 4” IPS is crisp, and with better color reproduction than most DAPs I’ve tested. Out of this lot, the only one that surpasses it is the DX200, which not only has more realistic colors, but also perfect resolution for the size, with no visible pixilation.

    Opus1S 03.jpg
    In sound, the Opus#1S deviates quite a bit from the original. This is a warm, thick, almost mid-forward device. Great smoothness permeates the signature. Notes possess weight and tangibility. The low-end was paid special attention, endowing it with no small measure of authority. My monitors produce extra oomph when hooked up to the 1S.

    While clarity is not the main goal of its tuning, Opus manages to avoid too much wooliness. It’s clean and articulate, allowing vocals and instruments to come through with power. There is a laidback and effortless quality which feels thoroughly organic. For certain, this Opus is not overly energetic or trebly. In truth, it feels a little rolled off in the highs, though I won’t go so far as to say it’s actually lacking extension.

    Music is rendered with above average dimensionality, giving a sense of layering and 3D space. Wholesome mid-bass impregnates the timbre, delivering oodles of harmonic overtones for a thoroughly analogue presentation. The stage is quite large, though it does lack a bit in depth and height. Your sense of resolution is hampered by the tuning, but that’s not to say it sounds lo-fi. It’s too refined and deep for that. The 1S simply pursues a different agenda.

    Opus1S 01.jpg
    I shall state upfront, of the three DAPs referenced below, I feel wholeheartedly the first two are of equal quality to the 1S. Deciding between the two should be a matter of features, price, and signature preference.

    The most obvious comparison to make is that of the original Opus#1 (Review HERE). Flipping between the two with my line-switcher, I hear the new 1S to have a fuller, richer low-end. This continues up through the mids, which become warmer, bigger, and forward. The old #1 has the extra treble energy, however. It’s tuning is less full, and more clear and detailed. It does come off sort of thin and wispy in contrast. Soundstage is equally wide, though the #1 is a tiny bit taller than the 1S, and noticeably deeper.

    Cayin’s N5ii ($369.99, Review HERE) sits squarely between the #1 and 1S in signature. It’s warmer and weightier than the first Opus, but clearer and more analytical than the 1S. The 1S has the fuller bass and mids, while Cayin showcases a more vivid image with greater dynamics. Again, soundstage width is fairly equal, though the N5ii is taller and deeper than both #1 and 1S. This best-of-both-worlds-mentality makes the N5ii a little more to my tastes. Yet I know many who would prefer the 1S.

    Now, the Opus#2 ($999, Review HERE) is a clear step up. It has much of the 1S warmth, yet somehow comes off utterly neutral at the same time. No frequency seems tampered with. Bass, mids, and treble are on equal footing. Perfect naturalness. Furthermore, notes possess such realistic weight, while powerful dynamism imbues the soundscape. The stage is the largest yet, with particular skill at rendering depth. Indeed, here lies a true upgrade, but you’ll ******* pay for it.

    Opus1S 02.jpg
    Many times when a player is tuned for warmth, it loses clarity, detail, and articulation, pairing best with a monitor which emphasizes those traits. In other words, put a warm DAP with a brighter headphone. The Opus#1S, however, is not so picky. Thanks to its adequate resolution and clarity, I found even very warm gear to play well with this device.

    Opus1S & FIBAE 01.jpg
    For example, the new Massdrop Exclusive FIBAE by Custom Art is a true warmth monster. Apocalyptic bass presence and calm, smooth treble takes the warmth factor to 11. Yet the FIBAE ME never forgets a singer must be heard and felt, thus achieving a remarkable balance where all things work together. The result is some kind of ultimate music, and Opus lends itself beautifully to that endeavor. You’ll also enjoy a healthy expanse of soundstage, thick, lush mids, and killer harmonic overtones.

    Another bit of surprise synergy is the Periodic Audio Beryllium (Be, $299). This single Dynamic Driver IEM is awesomely natural, with subdued, silky highs, titanic, textured bass, and airy, detailed vocals. There’s something about this tuning that gives me goosebumps. It’s so right my body physically responds. I feared the Opus#1S may tip the balance, introducing a veil, and closing in the boundless soundstage. Thankfully, that’s not the case. In fact, I couldn’t be happier with the combo.

    Opus1S & Be 01.jpg
    Opus1S & Encore 02.jpg
    Noble Audio’s Kaiser Encore ($1,850, Review HERE) is a monitor I always expected to mesh nicely with the 1S. Due to its brighter nature, a fat, bass-heavy source does nothing but enrich Encore. And Opus held true to this pattern. You keep all of the transparency, resolution, and sick detail, and add just a touch extra smoothness and low-end heft. If you augment the chain with the plusSound Tri-Copper wire, you are treated to nothing less than perfection: slightly warm and velvety, mingling with gobs of clear and vibrant. This instantly became one of my favorite setups.

    Shocking though you may find it, there is a far less expensive setup I enjoyed even more. The IMR Acoustics R1 (about $700 USD). With the copper filter, the R1 hits me in just such a way as to destabilize my passion for the hobby, causing me to flirt with notions of retirement, wherein just Pinky and this IEM live happily ever after, to the end. There’s phenomenal dynamics and clarity, sparkly, limitless treble, transparent mids, and unbelievable bass resolution… not to mention lethal impact. What’s more, the Opus#1S handles it all like a hero, hindering naught, though adding to the deliciousness.

    Opus1S & R1 01.jpg
    One dreadfully dull day at the office, the AudioQuest NightOwl ($699.95, Review HERE) saved the day. Its chocolaty tones and wealth of detail were only amplified by the 1S. Opus had no issue conveying the chasmal soundstage and profound depth which characterizes the NightOwl experience. With a DAP like this, these headphones are like walking around with an acoustically rich concert hall on your head. So good it’s probably immoral.

    Opus1S & NO 01.jpg
    Looking back over the review, I’ve said some pretty nice things about this player. That’s interesting, since I was not blown away by it. Nothing about this device screams “THE BEST” or “MOST AWESOME”, yet somehow it worms its way into your heart, insinuating itself with moments of serenity. I suspect much of it is thanks to how artfully Opus sculpts its relaxed, yet dramatically musical signature. It’s hard to find fault when the sound is both smooth as satin and clear as church bells. Both rich and articulate. Take also into account the immense output power, and you have one hell of a portable solution for anything you care to drive.

    -~::Pinky_Powers::~-

    The Opus#1S
    • 24BIT / 192KHZ HIGH RESOLUTION SOUND
    • CIRRUS LOGIC CS43198 X 2EA DUAL DAC
    • ARM CORTEX-A9 1.4GHZ, QUAD-CORE CPU DDR3 1GB
    • SNR 123DB, THD+N 0.0007%, CROSSTALK – 140DB, OUTPUT 3.1VMRS ( UNBALANCED )
    • SNR 125DB, THD+N 0.0005%, CROSSTALK – 142DB, OUTPUT 3.4VMRS ( BALANCED )
    • LOW-CLOCK-JITTER SENSITIVITY: 50PS(TYP)
    • 4INCH TFT WIDE TOUCH DISPLAY (480 X 800), IPS PANEL
    • WAV, FLAC, ALAC, AIFF, DSD, WMA,
    • MP3, OGG, APE(NORMAL, HIGH, FAST)
    • INTERNAL MEMORY 32GB
    • EXTERNAL MICRO SD CARD MEMORY 256GB X 2EA
    • ENHANCED ABS SOLID BODY AND TEMPERED GLASS
    • ULTRA POWER SAVING MODE
      fiascogarcia likes this.
  5. cleg
    Great step forward
    Written by cleg
    Published Apr 3, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - sound, driving power, build quality, design, new screen, storage capabilities, firmware
    Cons - no case bundles, no wireless features
    It's always good to start a review with some bold statement. Here it is: I think theBit is the only company that can compete with A&K in the DAP world. There are few other companies, offering competitive solutions, but only theBit managed to create product both stylish, comfortable in use, and delivering top-tier sound. Of course, I'm speaking about OPUS#2, but entry-level OPUS#1 was a great model, but… What time is it? Upgrade time! So, please welcome OPUS#1S.
    1-Main Pic.jpg
    First of all, I'd like to thank theBit for providing me with the sample of OPUS#1S for exchange to my honest and unbiased review. I've had only to pay import tax.

    As usual, I'll try to keep "intro" part short. Player's box got slight "facelift," now the main package is done in stylish red color, and outer sleeve has beautiful grey color and texture, looking more modern. Inside you'll get DAP itself, Micro-USB cable, warranty card, manual and spare screen protectors. A gorgeous leather case is sold separately, but many shops offer sweet bundles with some discount, so I recommend you to get the case too.
    2-Box.jpg
    Design and UX-wise, new OPUS looks like it's predecessor, but with few significant improvements. First one, it's a color, you can get #1S in stylish blue and burgundy colors. Both options are looking unusual and fresh. Also, the new version has exciting texture on the back side, small, but attractive touch. Second, probably most significant change is the screen. theBit used one of the best displays in portable DAP world. It has everything you can expect: excellent resolution, large viewing angels, pleasant color balance and even enough brightness. The difference is even more noticeable in the direct comparison of two revisions.

    Speaking "in general," OPUS#1S offers outstanding build quality: nice plastic, perfect finish.
    3-Accessories.jpg
    One the sides you'll find primary control buttons: volume and playback. On the top located two outputs (3.5 mm and 2.5 mm) and on/off button. On the bottom, we'll get Micro-USB connector. The player can handle 2 MicroSD cards (for DSD lovers) and also has 32 Gb of built-in memory. Card slots are located under the small lid on the lower left side. Player has perfect work time, in my tests I've got a bit above 10 hours.
    4-Overview.jpg
    But of course, most of the interaction with DAP is done via the touchscreen. theBit uses highly customized Android. Overall UI is simple, reliable and fast. Unfortunately, the player doesn't have WiFi and Bluetooth, so no third party apps, no streaming, just OPUS#1S is just "offline" player, playing music from its storage, but it does that well.

    theBit completely re-vamped sound of OPUS#1 and created much more enjoyable and engaging signature with added weight and emotions, giving a good sense of realism.
    5-Rear.jpg
    Lows here are weighty, with a pleasant body, but they aren't slow of muddy. Bass goes pretty deep, but lowest layers are a bit recessed in quantity. The player is perfect in representing bass textures and low register instruments separation.
    6-Buttons.jpg
    Mids are good in combining detailed and dynamic sound, so the player is outstanding both in micro and macro dynamics. It's nice in every aspect, from vocalist's emotions to different rumble and roar. Resolution isn't a record, but anyway is good. OPUS#1S highlights emotions a little bit, but does that politely, without overacting. The imaginary stage is above average in both directions. Player has charming, spacious sounding (not as good as OPUS#2 of course, but for this price tier it's excellent anyway).
    7-Case.jpg
    Treble is a bit simplified regarding attacks and decays, but they have good extension, so they are good at adding "air" to the sound. Treble resolution is good too, so even with TOTL IEMs OPUS#1S sounds decent.

    Few comparisons

    OPUS#1 For me, the previous version sounds colder, in more "monitoring" way. It has a wider, but the shallower stage, that sometimes sounds exaggerated, so #1S is more enjoyable and more "lively."

    OPUS#2 Of course it's a flagship DAP and for me it worth any penny of its price. Bigger imaginary stage with perfect holographic effect, mere neutral, but engaging presentation — everything you can expect from flagship is here. Well, as you can probably guess, I love OPUS#2 much (even owning SP1000).
    8-Compare.jpg
    OPUS#3 This one offers a bit smoother and a bit darker representation for those, who like intimate and warm sound. Sometimes it's engaging, and sometimes I prefer more neutral signature.

    FiiO X5-3 I can't call the difference in "level" here is gigantic, but OPUS is a bit more natural, a bit more energetic, while FiiO offers a bit better treble attacks.

    Cayin N5-II Well, this is an entirely different DAP. Cayin is neutral DAP for those, who prefer such sound signature with better resolution, but sometimes it's too demanding and even dull (but it depends more on quality of recordings).
    9-Other Buttons.jpg
    Lotoo Paw 5000 Mk II And once again, DAP pretty close regarding signature to OPUS#1S. I've made some blind A/B tests, and the difference isn't huge, but OPUS makes a small step forward concerning engagement and mids emotions.

    As for headphones pairing, OPUS#1s offers more driving power, so now it can easily handle almost any existing cans. On the other side, it stays virtually quiet with sensitive IEMs. For this player, I'd suggest some neutral models like HiFi Boy OS V3 (indeed a hidden gem IMHO) or CA Andromeda. But of course, it's more a matter of subjective preferences.
    10-With Andromeda.jpg
    So, despite lacking wireless features, new OPUS stays interesting DAP for those, who prefer the engaging sound and it's another proof that theBit really can tailor their own, exciting sound.

      seanwee, nick n, mgunin and 1 other person like this.
    1. F700
      Nice wrapped up review for a nice-looking and apparently nice sounding DAP. About your bold statement at the beginning of your review, you might haven't heard, had in your hands and/or saw the Sony's DAPs :wink:... or maybe you have indeed and it wasn't your taste :) Nice pictures btw
      F700, Apr 6, 2018
  6. Dobrescu George
    Opus #1s - Vivid Dynamic Strong
    Written by Dobrescu George
    Published Mar 21, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Vivid Sound, Stable Firmware, Clean Sound, Clear Sound, Detailed Sound, Great Driving Power, Price, Aesthetics, Build Quality, Overall Device Just Works Great, One of the best for simply playing music from mSD cards
    Cons - No Streaming, No APP Store, No Sideloading that I found, No Wifi, No BT, No other features but playing music from mSD card
    Opus #1s - Vivid Dynamic Strong

    Opus #1s is the successor to Opus #1 from Opus, a rather large company from Korea, known already for having brought us Opus #2 and other amazing DAPs. #1s is their midrange DAP, and it is going to be interesting to see how it compares to other midrange DAPs.

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    Purchase link (MusicTeck) : https://shop.musicteck.com/products/opus-1s-hi-res-portable-digital-audio-player



    Introduction

    Opus DAPs (Digital Audio Players) are some of the best-known Audiophile products around, being famous for their excellent musical sense and revealing abilities, along with exquisite designs and excellent after-purchase support. Opus are known to employ some of the most strict quality control procedures in their production lines, leading to long-lasting and reliable products, along with excellent overall experiences for their customers.

    It should be noted that I have absolutely no affiliation with Opus, I am not receiving any incentive for this review or to sweeten things out. This review is not sponsored nor has been paid for by Opus or anyone else. I'd like to thank Opus for providing the sample for the review. The sample was provided along with Opus's request for an honest and unbiased review. This review will be as objective as it is humanly possible, and it reflects my personal experience with Opus #1s. Every opinion expressed is mine and I stand by it, the purpose of this review is to help those interested in Opus #1s find their next music companion.



    About me

    https://audiophile-heaven.blogspot.ro/p/about.html



    Packaging

    First things first, let's get the packaging out of the way:


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    Opus #1s comes packaged in one of the legendary boxes made by Opus, and it is seated in a foam cutout, protected by a thick case from any kind of impediments met during transport and storage. The case has a red color, and it is dressed in a gray paper exterior, which has the technical details of #1s written with care, along with a few other informations about the product. We have the Blue version of Opus #1s, but we know that there is a violet version out there as well.

    Inside the package, there is a little envelope which includes all the papers for #1s, along with the warranty card, a little introductory paper, and a spare screen protector. Upon closer study, we can find that #1s comes with a screen protector applied from the factory, both on its face and on its back, which is made of glass.

    You can also find a genuine leather case in the package, which looks amazingly good on #1s, and you can also find a high quality USB cable for using #1s as a USB DAC.

    The box size is rather moderate for the device, but the unboxing experience is rather fun and premium, while the package contents are good, being enough to use #1s.



    What to look in when purchasing a high-end DAP

    https://audiophile-heaven.blogspot.ro/p/what-to-lookl.html



    Technical Specifications

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    Build Quality/Aesthetics/UI/Firmware

    Starting with the outer appearance, Opus #1s is built like a tank.

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    It has a door which protects the two microSD slots, which we found rather good in actual usage. It also has a very solid body construction which doesn't give in to pressure.

    The back is made out of glass and it features a beautiful pattern on it, while the frond is occupied by the beautiful display.

    Now the size and the resolution of the display are not quite as important as the color and the brightness, which are in one word, perfect. The display has a minor warm color tilt, so it won't go hard on the eyes even if you're quite tired when using #1s, and the brightness is incredibly high, thing which is excellent for outdoors usage.


    There is a power button on top, along with a 3.5mm TRS SE Headphone Output, which can also act as a line out, and there is a 2.5mm TRRS Balanced Headphone Output as well. On the sides you can find the volume control buttons, and the play / fwd / bckwd buttons, which all feel clicky and are nice to the touch. The microSD slot is on the left side of the device, while you can find the microUSB port on the bottom of the device.

    The firmware is based on Android, but #1s does not have Wifi, Bluetooth or any kind of connectivity, so it doesn't offer an option for sideloading apps, nor an option for google play store, so its default music app will be the main music app to be used with it. There aren't a lot of extras in the settings, but we're happy to notice that #1s offers a high-quality EQ option, which will surely come in handy for a few users.


    The overall device is quick enough for everyday usage, but it is not as fast (in software operation) as our Mi Max 2. #1s supports usage as a USB DAC, but it doesn't support usage as a transport to another DAC/AMP through its microUSB port.

    On the plus side, the fact that it doesn't come with any kind of extra features leads it to be one of the most stable DAPs we tried to date, and we had literally zero crashes with it during more than a month of usage and stress. It simply works and it works well, there is nothing to complain about its software, and we feel it is one of the DAPs with the most bulletproof software on the market at this moment. Even other DAPs from Opus have shown software glitches once or twice, but #1s is absolutely stable and ready for usage.

    The only minor downside we found during our time with it was that it needs to rescan its entire media library every time the user turns it on, so the user should either leave it in sleep mode (which consumes a very insignificant amount of battery), or get accustomed to turning it with 3-4 minutes before actually using it. We went with a combination of both, and our experience was amazing, but we felt we needed to mention this.



    Sound Quality

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    Opus #1s is interesting in its sound, and we need to mention that it is priced around 400$, being above the entry-level area, and slowly crossing in the upper midrange area for DAPs. The general tuning is rather neutral, with a touch of warmth. The transparency is great, but if there is one thing that really defines #1s, that is power. Both driving power and general strength of sound, music feels strong, forward and well defined, but not bright or dead-neutral, rather with a drop of warmth on top. 3



    Bass

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    The Bass of #1s is rather deep and has amazing strength, and we found that it goes as low as the human ear can hear, especially with IEMs and easier to drive headphones. Even with harder to drive headphones, #1s is able to hold its ground and go as low as it has to, all while keeping a good tactile feeling, and while offering a rather satisfying experience to the listener. The detail in the bass is great for the price range, and we found nothing to complain in the bass department. There is a touch of warmth here and there, but it is rather minor, and without knowing what to look for, one might not hear it at all, as it is a mostly neutrally tuned DAP.



    Midrange

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    The midrange is characterised by a slightly forward presentation, with a more personal approach to music, presenting things up close, all while being rather transparent. The vocal tonality is spot-on, and it can fight even with Opus #2 in vocal tonality, but it can't fight with it in detail. The overall detail of the midrange is good, but it won't reach quite the level of X7mkii, Opus #3 or Opus #2. Still, for 400$, it is an amazing level of detail coming from a single device. Voices have good texture and realism to them, while guitars feel emotional and juicy. The midrange tends to be natural towards ever so slightly smoother side of things, being rather easier on the ears, than something like iDSD Nano BL with its filter set on measure. This also means that some finer textures in synths may get smoothed by a little bit, but violins and voices have a very effortless presentation to them. Effortless is a good way to define its sonic performance in general, but it still isn't as smooth as FiiO X5-3 which was a tad too relaxed and laid-back.



    Treble

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    The treble of #1s is on the neutral to ever so slightly smoother side of things. It has a good amount of glimmer and can reach the highest registers when it needs to, but it is slightly smoother, with little grain and maybe a touch less aggressiveness than we generally like. This makes Opus #1s ideal for Jazz and relaxing music, and Opus even has a beautiful Jazz album on #1s by default, but it makes it less aggressive for metal and music where a rough and more forward treble might be welcome. We'd like to emphasize the fact that this happens by a very little bit, and once again, for the most part it is neutral, those finer nuances being hard to notice without knowing what to look for, or without having access to other devices to compare it to.



    Soundstage

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    The soundstage of #1s is pretty good for its price, and while the size itself is more on the intimate side, it is not congested, and instruments have a good amount of separations between them, offering a rather fun and pleasing experience. The overall size of the soundstage extends well in width, but it is not very tall, and it is not very deep either, offering once again, more of a room experience rather than a large soundscape like Opus #3 offers, or a deep and very carefully layered experience like #2 offers.



    ADSR/PRaT

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    The ADSR and PRaT (Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release, and Pace Rhythm and Timing) characteristics of Opus #1s are on the natural to very slightly laid-back and relaxed side of things. Overly, they remind us of iDSD Nano BL and its Listen filter setting, where certain textures, like those in the music of Mindless Self Indulgence, are smoothed out a bit and finer textures are not quite as expressed as a more aggressive signature. This also gives #1s a high likeliness to work well with relaxing music like Jazz, Classical and vocal-focused music, being just the right thing for this type of experience. For the price, the ADSR / PRaT performance tends to be rather good, and a more aggressive timing at this price range might actually be counter-intuitive as most people might not expect that type of sound.



    Portable Usage

    Now, when it comes to its portability, we reach a new chapter of portability with #1s. It is not quite thin, and it is actually thicker than all of our other devices, but it is not quite that wide, and it is not quite that tall either, having a smaller overall footprint that Xiaomi Mi Max 2, our test smartphone. The overall device feels really nice in hand, and it actually feels more nimble than other Opus DAPs, where #3 had a little rough corners, and where #2 was a tad too large in width to sit as comfortably.

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    #1s does not come with any kind of connectivity, like Wifi or BT, so this should be taken into account when considering whether #1s should be your future DAP, as Streaming will not be an option.

    With 2 microSD slots, #1s is rather amazing at keeping a large collection of music on-the-go, and it actually fits our entire music collection. The scanning time for our entire music collection, which is around 450 GB of Flac + 320 kbps MP3 files, is around 3-5 minutes, and it is rather simple to turn the device on before leaving for a walk, as it will finish scanning before we can take on our shoes and coats.

    The power #1s has is enough to drive even really hard to drive headphones, thing which might seem counter-intuitive when one looks at its price, but #1s has a lot of power to spare, and virtually any IEM should be driven with ease, and even full over-the-ear headphones should be no issue for #1s, even if we're talking about some harder to handle cans.

    The battery life is fairly good for #1s, and it is a pretty good overall device for portability, and since our usage scenario implies usage of stable libraries much more than streaming, it was an amazing experience for us and we feel that it is one of the best at around 400$.



    Select Pairings

    Please note that for any pairing, the IEM has more impact on the final result than the DAP, the best DAP being one that is as transparent as possible - #1s being quite good at this.

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    Opus #1s + Dunu Falcon-C - #1s provides a very good driving source for Falcon-C, with no apparent hiss, and with an excellent amount of details, featuring a powerful and impressive sound. Falcon-C presents its typical clear and focused sound, with an intimate soundstage and a sparkly treble, all while having a nice edge on musicality and instrument separation.

    Opus #1s + FiiO F9 Pro - F9Pro is the bigger brother of F9, and combined with #1s it sounds rather impressive, with a very natural presentation and great instrument separation, excellent detail and resolution, and a larger soundstage width.

    Opus #1s + Unique Melody Martian - UM Martian is quite a precise and clear IEM with a tight bottom end, a clear and very detailed midrange, and a bright and energetic top end. Opus #1s cuts a bit of its natural aggressiveness and replaces that with a more musical and smoother experience, making UM Martians sound more natural and realistic, all while losing a bit of detail from their rather analytical sound.

    Opus #1s + Sennheiser IE800 - IE800 sounds rather impressive driven by #1s, coming through with its typical strongly U-shaped sound, with a very well separated sound and a very engaging and impressive top end. The main difference one can expect with IE800 from different DAPs is a difference in resolution and level of details, where #1s performs rather decent, and we must admit that we might have been spoiled by flagships for IE800, from the likes of Opus #2 and iBasso DX200.

    Opus #1s + HIFIMAN RE2000 - Being a Summit-fi IEM, RE2000 is given an interesting sound by #1s. Amazingly, the mighty resolution of RE2000 is present with #1s, and it is able to give them an excellent detailed sound, while the soundstage is rather intimate and and the treble is a tad relaxed, and might require a bit more sparkle, at least like an Opus #3 has.

    Opus #1s + Beyerdynamic Xelento - Being a romantic IEM, Xelento pairs interestingly with #1s. To our amazement, the pairing actually works quite well, and while Xelento already has a very strong and emphasized bass, it doesn't get overbearing or too much with #1s, and with Xelento's already smooth top end and general signature, #1s makes a very fine combination and solution.

    Opus #1s + Ultrasone Signature Studio - Signature Studio is fairly hard to drive, but Opus #1s does its job with amazing efficiency and ease. The sound is rather wide and the instrument separation is quite amazing. Signature Studio is less source dependent as long as it gets enough power, and happily, #1s is able to give them that power and to make them shine.

    Opus #1s + Meze 99 Classics - Meze 99Classics is an interesting pairing with #1s, as, as we've noted before, 99C requires a good amount of treble to reach their maximum potential. Happily, the EQ configuration of #1s proves itself to be very capable and it is able to bring 99C to their potential, making them shine with a detailed sound.

    Opus #1s + iBasso IT01 - IT-01 is another interesting IEM to combine with #1s, as IT-01 is a rather warm IEM with a sparkly treble, but not with a very aggressive sound. The combo sounds rather good and effortless, making music sound a tiny bit laid-back, but with the sparkle in IT-01's treble being there, it still is a very engaging experience that one will fall in love with.


    Opus #1s + ClearTune VS4 - CTM VS4 is a new IEM we are going to review, and they have an interesting sonic signature, somewhat similar with iBasso IT-01, with maybe less sub-bass, an enhanced and romantic mid-bass, a thick and satisfying midrange, but with more detail, and with a little dip in the upper midrange, after which they bring more sparkle in the overall treble, especially in the upper treble, sounding rather close to what ClearTune notes them to sound like, Vintage, somehow reminding us of rock-n-roll and older rock typical mastering, with a very healthy dynamic range. Combined with #1s, they become a tad laid back and sound quite effortless, being a more relaxed experience than they typically are.

    Opus #1s + Dita Answer, Truth Edition - Dita Answer, the Truth Edition is a rather analytical IEM with excellent resoltion and revealing abilities, with a neutral bass and mid-bass, a neutral and very clear midrange, and a more enhanced and sparkly treble that is sure to be extremely engaging. Dita Answer The Truth Edition is really good at spotting treble that is a tad grainy and it shows #1s to be a smoother and more laid-back DAP, with a rather excellent overall treble presentation.

    Opus #1s + IMR Acoustics R1 - IMR Acoustics R1 is another IEM we just received, but it is a IEM which you can tune to your preferences, and #1s is a good source to pair it with. The sound will vary a lot with the way you configure it, but the detail and overall sonics with #1s being on the warmer and more musical side.



    Comparisons

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    Opus #1s vs Cayin N5ii - We should start with the obvious, Cayin N5ii has a lot more features than #1s, coming with Streaming abilities and a lot more usage potential, for those who are into this type of thing. Cayin N5ii also comes with two microSD slots, so it does make a pretty interesting device, being really well-priced and very very attractive. In side, N5ii is smaller than #1s by a good margin in every direction, but since we use Mi Max 2 as a smartphone, we usually prefer larger displays for easier control. Cayin N5ii had a few bugs to sort out at first, but now it is getting stable, while #1s has been absolutely stable since the first moment we received it. The display, on the other hand, has much better color, much better contrast, much better brightness, larger size and looks better on Opus #1s, while it is smaller on Cayin N5ii. The overall navigation, on the other hand, is more natural and feels more native on N5ii, where with Opus #1s, we got used to it, but it isn't always the most intuitive navigation. Cayin N5ii can sideload apps and has Hiby support, while #1s does not have any of those features. The sound is more neutral on Cayin N5ii, with a slightly colder and more aggressive approach, thing which we actually like a lot, as it also feels a tad more revealing. The soundstage is similar in size, and there is a similar amount of overall detail, although on N5ii it is more expressed. In the end the two devices are very different, N5ii being a multi-purpose device with a much wider usage scenario, covering even #1s's main usage scenario as it features two microSD slots, but it is a smaller device, more nimble, easier to use with one hand for people with smaller hands, Opus #1s having the better display, and more driving power available to it, along with a warmer sound and a more laid-back presentation with a slightly more effortless and less aggressive presentation. They serve very different usage scenarios, and we feel that users will be more attracted to one of them, depending on their usage scenarios and tastes, the device design being rather different as well.


    Opus #1s vs Opus #3 - Opus #3 is interesting to compare #1s to, as it seems to go on sale once in a while, situation in which its price gets close to #1s. Starting with the overall device, #3 has a similar size, with a similar display, although with less warm colors, and while the overall size is the same, #3 has a few more angles and corners in its design, looking a bit more aggressive, but also being a tad less nimble in one-hand usage. The sound is fairly more aggressive and more engaging on #3, with more sparkle in the treble, better instrument separation, larger soundstage, and a less laid-back presentation which is more vivid in the long run. The two devices are quite different, and #3 feels like an overall upgrade to #1s, although #1s might have more raw power for powering power-hungry headphones, and while #3 has streaming abilities and all the bells and whistles one can wish for, #1s has two microSD slots, where #3 has only one, #3 feeling like a more wide-usage-scenario device rather than the very focused and expert device #1s is.



    Value and Conclusion

    Priced at around 400$, Opus #1s is one of the better priced DAPs out there, being quite affordable and very interesting of a deal, for what it is. Starting with the build quality, it is, in one word, amazing. The whole device feels very sturdy and doesn't show any kind of issue with the build quality, and it was one of the best displays we've seen in a DAP, with excellent brightness, colors and contrast, all of which are essential for proper outdoors usage.

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    The sonic performance is well above what we expected from a 400$ device, and Opus reminded us that they can make an awesome device for a very fair and affordable price. The sonic performance can compete with similarly priced devices rather well, and its power alone is a mighty thing to place in a DAP, being quite strong. The soundstage is rather personal and the music is a tad laid-back, the overall sound feeling rather musical and enjoyable, without any kind of tonal imbalance and without being too relaxed to listen metal music with.

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    All in all, #1s is a great example of a greatly balanced overall device for 400$, and there's very little we'd want to change on it, although if one requires Streaming or Wifi / Bluetooth, #1s does not offer any of those services.

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    All in all, Opus #1s is a well priced DAP, with a clean and clear sound, a neutral to warm tuning, with a slightly laid-back presentation, and an excellent overall device experience, being one of the devices we consider really worthy to look into at this price. With an extremely stable firmware, it will surely be a favorite for those who just want to listen to music from their collection and who don't need more than a simple, but very stable device.

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    Purchase link (MusicTeck) : https://shop.musicteck.com/products/opus-1s-hi-res-portable-digital-audio-player


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  7. ngoshawk
    Little Bro goes to the gym for a toning session...
    Written by ngoshawk
    Published Mar 20, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Excellent, honest sound.
    Simple UI, basic Android to me is a huge asset.
    Ease of operation.
    Dual SD slots carry a lot of music.
    What I call the "clarity of sound," Opus-style.
    Battery life
    Cons - Simple Android, seems dead to most...
    Basic, basic, basic...
    Nothing really, except no WiFi, BT, streaming, but who cares!
    thebit Opus #1s-$399, paid for with my own sweat and labor, and the plastic, which pays for that…

    Audio-Opus #1s webpage: http://www.audio-opus.com/?page_id=17532

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    Intro: Many of the latest DAP’s promote a multitude of features to draw a potential customer in…WiFi, BT streaming, dual SD card slots, which can hold 1000TB cards, 80,000W of power, the latest greatest Android OS, all for less than a mortgage payment!! Etc, etc, blah, blah, blah. It is in this regard, that I became interested in the #1S simply because it eschews most of the above, if not all of them. While it does have some fantastic specs as listed below, it does so bucking the trend of BT, WiFi and Giga-based power ratings. Where the #1S shines, is in the enhancements of the most excellent Opus #1. The #1S does come with dual chips one running each channel, dual card slots so you can take most of your songs along, and dual headphone jacks (which can be used simultaneously, one SE the other 2.5mm Bal). It hits the right audiophile buttons. And I will state up front, pretty darn well. This is evolution, not revolution. If this is the evolution, I cannot wait until thebit “improve” the Opus#2. The #2 has recently supplanted my beloved Shanling M5 as my reference DAP, and it took something of the quality of that #2 to do so, in my humble opinion. Good stuff, so please honor me and read on…



    (Stolen from below, but more grammatically correct…) The Opus#1s is based on an Android operation system compatible with the ARM Cortex-A9, up to 1.4GHz with a Quad-Core CPU DDR3 1GB to express the best possible sound one could expect at this price, providing bit to bit decoding and supporting a wide variety of audio formats. Dual CS43198 DACs released by Cirrus Logic in 2017 grace the DAP (https://www.cirrus.com/products/cs43198/), each managing the left and right channels separately to produce excellent sound characteristics with higher resolution and a wider spacious soundstage. This is excellent stuff, putting it ahead of its competitors, such as the Shanling M3s (more on that in a bit), and the Cayin N5ii.

    Four Ben F’s is a lot to spend on something, which doesn’t stream, connect to another BT device, or have WiFi. A big risk, but again swimming against the stream is kind of how thebit rolls. I guess we will see if it is worth it…initial impressions point the arrow toward yes.



    Specs/History:



    • 24bit / 192kHz High Resolution Sound
    • Cirrus Logic CS43198 x 2EA Dual DAC
    • ARM Cortex-A9 1.4GHz, Quad-Core CPU DDR3 1GB
    • SNR 123dB, THD+N 0.0007%, Crosstalk – 140dB, Output 3.1Vmrs (Unbalanced)
    • SNR 125dB, THD+N 0.0005%, Crosstalk – 142dB, Output 3.4Vmrs (Balanced)
    • Low-clock-jitter sensitivity: 50ps(Typ)
    • 4inch TFT Wide Touch Display (480 x 800), IPS Panel
    • WAV, FLAC, ALAC, AIFF, DSD, WMA,
    • MP3, OGG, APE (Normal, High, Fast)
    • Internal Memory 32GB
    • External Micro SD Card Memory 256GB x 2EA
    • Enhanced ABS Solid Body and Tempered Glass
    • Ultra-Power Saving Mode


    New Cirrus Logic CS43198 X 2 Pure Dual DAC

    Opus#1S has two CS43198 DACs released by Cirrus Logic in 2017. Each DAC manages the left and right channels separately to produce the best sound with the higher resolution and wider spacious feel.

    Optimized sound through sophisticated tuning by audio expert

    Opus#1s is based on Android operation systems compatible with the ARM Cortex-A9, up to 1.4GHz with the Quad-Core CPU DDR3 1GB to express the best possible sound, providing bit to bit decoding and supporting wide variety of audio formats.

    Opus#1s maximizes the advantages of the CS43198 DAC performance while retaining the sound of the audio-opus series praised by users, enhancing ultra-low range and high range sound compared to the existing Opus#1.

    You can enjoy more dynamic sound.

    Powerful output of 3.4Vrms

    The powerful output of 3.4Vrms, which is not comparable to other DAPs of the same grade, enables you to enjoy powerful sound anytime and anywhere. Unbalance output also has enough 3.1Vrms to enjoy perfect sound with any earphone / headphone.

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    Initial impressions:


    I must say, upon arrival of the Opus #1S, I was taken aback at how similar it was to its big brother the #2, albeit smaller and lighter. The same familiar Opus feel in hand and operating alleviated any qualms/fears I may have had (OK, there weren’t any fears, but trepidation of whether it would match up to the #1 and #2…). I had previously heard @nmatheis #1, in fact I borrowed it for a bit (twice I’ve done that…) and thoroughly enjoyed it. Knowing at the time the Opus was significantly above what I wanted to spend, I found a “gently used” Shanling M5 in Russia and watched its journey across the globe. Pretty cool, to be honest. But, when an opportunity arose to purchase the #2, I could not resist. Especially since I had heard @PinkyPowers previously.


    So, it was with great anticipation I awaited the arrival of said #1S from Andrew at @Musicteck. We reached an agreement, to which I ended up purchasing the #1S for my own consumption. Again, Andrew was nothing but perfect to deal with, absolutely top notch and I again thank him and Musicteck. So, all of that formality out of the way…how did the critter sound?! Color me impressed that a company could make an improvement upon a near-legendary product and not only make it better, but also not make it cost an arm and a leg more as that “improvement” would beget.


    While I considered it a more neutral sound than my Shanling M3s/M5, I also consider it a bit (did it again…) more “honest.” A truer representation is what I would state off the bat. Not more detailed, but closer to what was intended. Not in the way of the #2 mind you, that is superb; but clearly cut from the same cloth.


    Package/Fit-n-Finsh:


    Coming with a recycled cardboard sleeve surrounding the red box of two halves (top/bottom), there is not spectacular regarding the package, just the right amount. When one considers the #2 comes in a sterile-white container, this is far more “entertaining.” With specs listed on the back, you get what you need, no more. Listing all, including purported “Audio Performance,” the back is quite informative. With a built-in 32gb of memory, you can store your streamed content, should you load it onto a card, first.

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    Under the critter itself, you would find the case, should you order one (I recommend it even though I did not, the one on the #2 is fabulous) and the USB micro charging cable. That is it. thebit means business on the sound end, not frilly, froufrou packaging.


    And that simplicity carries over to the unit itself. Tight fit corners, no mismatched seams, solid push buttons, and a solid colored plastic highlight the #1S. It is built very well. With a cover over the dual SD card slot, and volume +/- on the left, the right balances with FF/play-pause/REW on the right. An on/off switch graces the top as well as the SE/Bal headphone jacks, and the ubiquitous (although less so, and some argued why thebit still uses this…) USB 2.0 on the bottom. That’s it…no more, no extras, no frill, no mess. Simple, clear straightforward. I am beginning to think thebit put their money elsewhere…I do wish that there was some differentiation in the buttons on each side. No matter how many times I look, I still have trouble with the three buttons…call me old, but it is a minor annoyance.


    Overall fit and finish are top notch, just like the other products from thebit. Just excellent.


    Moving on to the actual critter, a simple push of the button on top awakens the #1S from slumber. Presented with a simple to read/use touchscreen (one upping the M3s…), the bottom third is taken up by rewind/play and fast forward buttons along with the song/progress bar. The upper two thirds contain album art, and a drop-down menu for changing all music. A single tap in the upper left, takes you back to the previous screen from whence your song was chosen. With the top ¼ reserved for choosing the sub-menus, it is efficient as simple Android, albeit a bit (again!!!) touchy for my tastes. I found myself babying the maneuvering on this menu. This could be problematic when commuting if one likes to change music often. I prefer shuffle, and rarely manipulate this menu unless I am looking for a specific song/artist. A minor knock, but the touchscreen in the song menu was finicky.


    As with Android/iOS, there is a pull-down menu accessed from the top of the screen. A simple swipe down, and one is presented with six options and “settings.” Line Out, Equalizer (customizable), sleep (a FABULOUS feature), repeat, and shuffle. That’s it. Simple, straightforward and nice to see. From the Settings cog, one accesses all of the Opus’ features/settings. Everything from screen brightness, to Audio (equalizer access, too), to a Timer and others can be had here. An Update tab is included for those who do the updates by SD card. Easy to use, too.


    All of this and one still hasn’t gotten to the actual sound characteristics…Enough of semantics, on to the good stuff. The #1S is typical Android, and even this iOS dolt figured it out in about 2 minutes. Nothing to hide, unlike the #2. Nice to see.

    Gear used/Compared:

    Shanling M3s
    Shanling M5

    Aune B1S
    iBasso PB3

    Magaosi K5
    Lypertek Mevi
    Hypersense Hex02
    Tin Audio T2
    Unique Melody Maestro V2
    Focal Elear

    Songs used:

    Too numerous to list, but as one would guess plenty O’ Bob, Ziggy, Jimmy, Dave & Stevie, along with Coldplay, and twentyonepilots. Like I said, my usual.

    [​IMG]

    Sound excellante:

    With increased power over both the #1 & #3, one would expect the #1S to sound more powerful. You will not be disappointed. A big push here was on the balanced front, and I can say that the improvements made definitely show using my Maestro and Effect Audio Ares ii cable. A very pleasant combo, but with the power of a freight train to boot (OK it seems that way….). And I will state up front, this was my favorite combination. Even against the VERY good Aune B1S, on high gain. Supple would be an apt description of the Maestro/#1S combo. Not having heard my Maestro’s in a good bit (!) of time, I was drawn back into the sound, with Magic Slim’s gravelly voice resonating through my ears, with much pleasure. With an increased S/N ratio, this is about as black a background as one could ask for. Silent, it is.

    No matter what IEM I used or headphone, I was brought back to what I would call that typical Opus sound: Clear, concise, detailed and expansive. The #1S is certainly cut from that same cloth. It is all of the above, but when comparing to a warmer DAP such as the M3s, falls short of what I would call that “rich, full” sound. To me a trademark of Shanling players, as much as clear and concise is to Opus’. Both of which I very much appreciate and like. I do prefer a warmer more full sound but having a DAP such as an Opus in which to compare is certainly the Yang of the Shanling Yin.



    [​IMG]



    This is a very good DAP. A good one, indeed. Rolling through Bob and Stevie, I hear details. The crisp cymbal clash and snare hit of Chris Layton’s drums of SRV, to the deep melodious voice of Bob, the #1S delivers in such clarity that one would think it on wings…almost. Not as clear and concise as the #2, but of the same lineage.



    Soundstage/Separation:

    As stated above this is a pretty doggone clear sound. As a result, instrumentation is quite clear. Everything neatly in place, with a fairly wide stage, and good height. Depth is there, too. Overall, I would consider this slightly out of head, but not inordinately so. This is not of stage where you think chasms of expanse. It is adequately wide, deep and high. Very good qualities and worthy of this sound produced.

    One could certainly find a DAP with a “bigger” soundstage. One could most certainly find a DAP with more clarity and detail (look in-house for the superb #2, first of all…). One could find a DAP with many more features than the #1S. One could find a more powerful DAP than this, too. But when you consider all of the qualities brought to the table in the Opus #1S, you are hard pressed to find any one DAP better suited to this price point, mid-fi. Just as IEM/Headphones have moved up the chain of what would be considered “Mid-fi,” so have DAPs. +/-$250 would have been considered mid-fi not too long ago. Now, those same critters, with better expectations and experiences go for $400, such as the #1S. It is the way the markets have progressed. Better quality components, also driven by market demand for features and “bling.” Thankfully here, thebit and the Opus #1S has focused that dollar on what matters to audiophiles…sound.

    [​IMG]

    At this point, I would be hard pressed to recommend a better mid-fi DAP. Crowded and getting more so, the Opus falls back to what matters most, sound quality and reliability. Stories abound about the latest iterations from well-known companies, struck with problems. Fine DAPs they are, but if one is having issues, how fine is it? I know of no such issues with the Opus brand (limited data of mine, of course…), and this should be a major point to consider. After all, if the critter of choice fails our walk, then of what good is it on that walk? the Opus wins here. I liken this to when soccer cleats first went to carbon footbeds…my son of course wanted (and yes received…) the lightest cleats he could have, since he was a forward. We fell for it. Only by sheer dumb luck did we find that he had broken one of those footbeds clean through, because he HEARD the other break on a hard tackle from an opposing defender. So, between State Cup soccer games, we had to hurriedly find him another pair. Thus endeth the what we call “Stupid-light” experiment with cleats…unless he ponied up his own dollar… And example would be the hype around carbon bike frames, wrought with destruction, breakage and carnage…now though, the bicycle industry has it down. I certainly didn’t want to be a test mule for carbon, so stuck with steel, which I still ride today. The same holds with audio, to me. I don’t really want to be the companies test mule, unless I am paid to do so…and I’m not. So, when one ponies up their own dollar, it had better be good, and be reliable. Such as the Opus #1s here.

    I won’t get into each of the subscreens/menus, as others have beaten it to death, and if one is looking at the Opus #1s, you are most likely familiar with Android-driven DAP’s. There is no need in my book. Suffice to say, the menus/screens function, and function well. No surprises, no frills, efficient, simplistic Android at its best.

    [​IMG]



    The Finale:

    I will close with a couple of thoughts. I prefer my Shanling M3S. There I said it. While the sound of the #1S is considered of more detail and clarity, I LIKE the Shanling sound, a LOT. It is the sound of which I choose. That said the Opus is a very, VERY good unit, of which one would be remise in not considering, especially if you savor that clarity and detail laden sound. It is a bit thin of sound overall to me, and what I would consider of delicate sound nature, but to some this is the nail on which they want hit. While behind the Opus #2 (and hence why I will keep it and not the #1S), this is a very good DAP at a very competitive price point on the market. One you should consider if you want a straight up “don’t mess with me” DAP, which only wants you to enjoy your music as it was meant…without coloration, and with adaptability of most IEM’s and headphones. It is good. You want more power? Purchase a balanced cable and sit back to enjoy that wonderfully clear, concise and clarity-driven sound. You want straight-forward honest sound, go with the SE, it is so good. You will not be disappointed with this critter.


    Many thanks again to Andrew and Musicteck for the agreement we reached. It is fair, and a true commitment to the audio community. Now go enjoy your music.

    [​IMG]
      Dobrescu George likes this.
    1. View previous replies...
    2. ngoshawk
      For what it was at the time, the x5iii was quite good, and I do still stream occasionally on it, as well as use it for reference in some reviews, but I consider the #1s to be of superior sound-wise to me. I think the #1s is a bit more clear, without the artificiality the x5iii provides.

      Both are good, but the Opus is better in my opinion, only. And thank you for the kind words!
      ngoshawk, Mar 20, 2018
    3. Dobrescu George
      Good review!
      Dobrescu George, Mar 21, 2018
      ngoshawk likes this.
    4. ngoshawk
      Yours, likewise!
      ngoshawk, Mar 21, 2018
      Dobrescu George likes this.
  8. twister6
    Time for an update!
    Written by twister6
    Published Feb 21, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - more power, blacker background, wider soundstage.
    Cons - higher price, leather case is optional.


    The product was provided to me free of charge for the review purpose in exchange for my honest opinion. The review was originally posted on my blog, and now I would like to share it with my readers on Head-fi.

    Manufacturer website: theBit, for sale on MusicTeck and Amazon.


    Intro.

    Two years ago, when I was asked to review the original Opus#1, I agreed because the spec looked great on paper. I never heard of theBit and had no idea what to expect, but it turned out to be a nice surprise. Later, I was pleased to find enhancements in the sound and the functionality with every new fw update, and noticed the sale price to go down which also improved its price/performance ratio. theBit also stayed consistent with their follow up Opus#2 release, still a great flagship DAP to recommend. Opus#3 was an interesting release that paved the way for side-loaded app support which ended up in Opus#2 as well. But I think the value of Opus#1 was too good for many to justify upgrading to Opus#3.

    Now, theBit decided to go back to their original hit release and update Opus#1 with a new Opus#1S model. 2nd gen updates are not uncommon, but not all of them focus on sound improvements, and often have a new exterior design along with a new DAC. theBit decided to approach #1S by leaving the exterior design untouched, keeping GUI nearly the same, and mostly updating the internal components, including the DAC. It's probably a bit of a gamble, but did it pay off? Let's find out in this review, which is going to be a short write-up mostly focusing on comparisons.

    Unboxing and Accessories.

    While the packaging box (in red) and the outside sleeve (in light grey) have been changed from the original colors, what drew my attention the most was an updated spec on the back of the sleeve. This is a very detailed General Specification and Audio Performance spec, something I wish all manufacturers would provide with their products.

    Inside, you will find Opus#1S in a secure foam cutout, users guide, screen protectors, and usb cable. Keep in mind, the available leather case is optional, though it's still Dignis designed pure leather case. The good news, if you are upgrading from Opus#1 and already have a leather case - Opus#1S exterior design is identical and the original leather case fits #1S like a glove.

    I know plenty of people who still use their original Opus#1 without a leather case. For me personally, I prefer a case to enhance the grip of the DAP. Besides, this Dignis case is high quality and doesn't "cover up" the unique lines of the chassis design, so definitely gets my recommendation.

    thebit_opus#1s-01.jpg thebit_opus#1s-02.jpg thebit_opus#1s-03.jpg thebit_opus#1s-04.jpg thebit_opus#1s-05.jpg thebit_opus#1s-06.jpg thebit_opus#1s-07.jpg

    Design.

    As I already mentioned, exterior design between #1 and #1S remains identical to the point where you can easily take Opus#1 leather case and use it "as is" with Opus#1S because it’s not only has the same dimensions but also the same layout of all the buttons and ports. The only exterior difference are two new colors, blue and purple. My review sample arrived in purple color, and I found it to be dark enough to look like black.

    You also have the same 32GB of internal storage and dual uSD card support to expand the storage up to 800GB. Still expect to find Volume +/- buttons on the left side, and Play/Pause/Skip hw playback buttons on the right side. Balanced 2.5mm port is at the top, and 3.5mm single ended port is next to it and still shared with Line Out and Optical out.

    Here, you will find all the differences under the hood. At first, I thought there was a typo when I read CS43198 dual DAC, considering original DAC was CS4398. But it's not a typo, this is Cirrus Logic Next Gen new DAC with Master-HiFi features. Furthermore, internal headphone amplifier section was beefed up with a more powerful output.

    For example, considering #1S balanced spec of 3.4Vrms vs #1 spec of 2.3Vrms, under 32ohm load that means approximately 165mW (#1) vs 361mW (#1S), which is still higher than #3. Furthermore, SNR spec was improved as well, and it's quite audible where you can hear a lot blacker background (#1S), hardly any hissing, and improved dynamics.

    thebit_opus#1s-19.jpg

    As a quick comparison summary of the specs, here is how #1S stacks up against #1 and #3:

    Opus#1S
    • DAC - Cirrus Logic CS43198 x2
    • Output - BAL 3.4Vrms, SE 3.1Vrms
    • SNR - BAL 125dB, SE 123dB
    • Storage - 32GB, 2x uSD
    • WiFi/BT - no

    Opus#1
    • DAC - Cirrus Logic CS4398 x2
    • Output - BAL 2.3Vrms, SE 2.1Vrms
    • SNR - BAL 115dB, SE 114dB
    • Storage - 32GB, 2x uSD
    • WiFi/BT - no

    Opus#3
    • DAC - Burr Brown PCM1792A
    • Output - BAL 3.0Vrms, SE 2.5Vrms
    • SNR - BAL 114dB, SE 114dB
    • Storage - 64GB, 1x uSD
    • WiFi/BT - yes

    Another difference that stood out for me was a display quality. While you have the same 4" display size and the same 480x800 resolution, #1S stepped it up with IPS screen which has a much wider viewing angles and richer/deeper colors. Even #3, which suppose to have the same display with IPS screen, had duller colors.

    Here is how Opus#3, #1, and #1S (all the way to the right) displays look like side by side:

    thebit_opus#1s-15.jpg

    GUI.

    User interface in all Opus DAPs is nearly identical, regardless if it's #1, #2, #3, or #1S, thus I found no surprises here, except for one. In Opus#1 you had to select "B" from a pull-down notification menu to enable Balanced Out output, while #1S has Balanced port enabled automatically. I found it to be a very convenient change because on many occasions with Opus#1 I used to forget to enable BAL and then wonder why I don’t have any sound.

    Everything else is identical with the same main playback screen which displays embedded artwork (if available, or default one from theBit) at the top, and shortcuts to add currently playing song to Favorite or Playlist when you tap on the screen, scrub bar to fast forward/back through the song underneath, and a golden Play/Pause round button and Skip Next/Prev at the bottom. You still get 10 Band EQ with 5 custom presents, gapless playback, and 3 levels (low/mid/high) of gain control.

    thebit_opus#1s-16.jpg

    Sound Analysis and Comparison.

    I find Opus#1S to have a very neutral tonality across entire frequency spectrum. While listening with different IEMs and full-size headphones and comparing to other DAPs, #1S sounds like it adds zero coloring to the sound, trying to keep it true to the original recording. That can give you a perception of sound being a little colder and a little more revealing which is good when you are analyzing your headphones to hear their signature without any coloration. Perhaps, it’s lacking some body, especially in lower mids, but I think it's just part of a neutral tuning to stay as close as possible to the original recorded source.

    Soundstage is wide, for sure #1S is wider than original #1. Also, the sound has a black background, making it tighter and faster, with faster transient of notes on/off, making details pop up with more clarity in comparison to #1. The vertical expansion of sound dynamics is good, not on the flagship level of other DAPs, but still pretty good for a mid-fi model which leads to a decent layering and separation of the sounds.

    Comparison of #1S vs #1.

    Though these DAPs have a similar neutral tonality, when it comes to a technical sound performance, there are some differences. The improvement in signal-to-noise ratio will be noticeable in #1S where you have a blacker background and nearly zero hissing, while #1 has some hissing with sensitive low impedance IEMs. #1S also has a better dynamics expansion and improved layering and separation of the sounds.

    Another noticeable difference is #1S having a wider soundstage expansion, while depth perception remained the same. Other improvement is a higher output power where on average #1S is about 20 volume clicks lower than #1. Also, IPS display of #1S has a deeper and richer colors and wider viewing angle in comparison to #1 which is not IPS. I also noticed that #1 next to my phone has more EMI interference while #1S had no issues under the same test conditions, probably due to a better internal shielding. And last, but not least, I didn't have to select BAL output in #1S like I have in #1.

    thebit_opus#1s-08.jpg thebit_opus#1s-09.jpg thebit_opus#1s-10.jpg thebit_opus#1s-11.jpg thebit_opus#1s-12.jpg thebit_opus#1s-13.jpg

    Comparison of #1S vs #3.

    This is another interesting comparison since I found both DAPs to have nearly an identical sound, including the same soundstage expansion, the same dynamics expansions, and the same level of transparency, layering, and separation. Also, they both have the same black background and tight/fast sound with faster transient response of notes.

    Where you find a difference is in output power, with #1S being more powerful, about 15 clicks difference in higher volume for #3 to match #1S. When it comes to a display, though both have IPS, I find #1S to have richer and more accurate colors. Also, dual uSD support gives #1S an upper hand when dealing with storage of high res files. But at the same time, #1S is an audio only playback device, while #3 has Bluetooth to connect to wireless headphones and WiFi with the ability to side-load apps, including for streaming. Last, but not least, #3 has a physical volume wheel while #1S has buttons like in original #1.

    thebit_opus#1s-14.jpg

    Other DAP comparisons.

    Opus #1S vs FiiO X5iii - 1S has a wider soundstage; X5iii has more hissing with sensitive low impedance IEMs while 1S has no hissing; 1S has a blacker background, lower noise floor; 1S sounds more dynamic, airier, with more sparkle, while X5iii is less dynamic (a little more compressed peaks), not as layered, and not as much air between the layers. Both have the same internal 32GB storage, and two uSD cards to expand the storage. Both have a responsive touch screen, but FiiO runs full open Android with Wifi, Google Play store, and support of streaming apps while 1S has a closed Android system with no wifi and no app support. Also, X5iii has Bluetooth support to connect wireless headphones. Both have 2.5mm balanced output. Overall, FiiO has more features, while Opus has better sound quality.

    Opus #1S vs Shanling M3S - 1S soundstage is a little bit wider; both are hiss-free and have a black background; I hear a difference in tonality where 1S is a little more neutral while M3S has a little more body in lower mids; also, I hear 1S to have a little more dynamic sound expansion with more airiness. In terms of the sound quality, the gap is not that big, though I find 1S to have an edge with a more neutral and transparent sound. The bigger difference is in overall design where M3S has no internal storage and only 1 uSD, while 1S has 32GB internal and 2 uSD card expansion. Both have balanced 2.5mm output. Also, M3S has a smaller display and no touch screen, while 1S has a big bright display and a very responsive touch screen.

    Opus #1S vs Cayin N5ii - 1S soundstage is just a tiny bit wider in comparison to N5ii; both are hiss-free and have a solid black background with a low noise floor; 1S tonality is more neutral while N5ii has a little more body; in terms of a dynamic expansion, I hear 1S just a tiny bit better, but it's a small gap. Both have the same internal 32GB of storage and external dual uSD, and both have a balanced 2.5mm HO. While the sound quality is close, the biggest difference is N5ii having Bluetooth (wireless headphones connection) and Wifi with access to Play store and streaming apps.

    thebit_opus#1s-17.jpg

    Pair up.

    It's clear that #1S offers a higher output power than #1, and as a result you can drive your headphones more efficiently since you don't have to push the volume higher. In general, I didn't find higher power to affect performance of IEMs as much, besides the differences I already noted above, such as wider soundstage and blacker background with less hissing. But full-size headphones with large dynamic drivers or higher impedance earbuds can have more sound improvement when driven with a more powerful source. Here are a few examples comparing Opus#1 vs Opus#1S performance, both in medium gain, playing the same track, where I also noted the volume "v" level and BAL (balanced, 2.5mm) vs SE (single ended, 3.5mm). Below is how I’m hearing the improvement going from #1 to #1S.

    Beyerdynamic T5p2 (BAL) - #1 (v105) vs #1S (v85): wider soundstage, tighter sound, blacker background, more textured bass, a little more sparkle in treble; overall a touch less veiled.

    Oppo PM3 (BAL) - #1 (v110) vs #1S (v90): wider soundstage, blacker background, everything else is identical.

    Audeze EL8C (SE) - #1 (v130) vs #1S (v110): just a little wider soundstage, blacker background, and more body in mids.

    Audio-Technica ATH-R70x (SE) - #1 (v140) vs #1S (v114): hard to spot a difference using these open back cans, but #1S sounds a little more transparent to my ears.

    VE Zen (SE) - #1 (125) vs #1S (v105): very similar soundstage expansion and overall tonality, but #1S does have a blacker background and tighter sound.

    thebit_opus#1s-18.jpg

    Conclusion.

    Even before I received Opus#1S for review, I got many questions asking how it compares to the original Opus#1 and if it worth the upgrade. If you are trying to decide between #1 and #1S, I would personally recommend go for the latter one since I found the sound quality improvement to justify the extra cost. As I mentioned already, #1S has a blacker background, tighter sound, better dynamics, and wider soundstage expansion, all of which makes this DAP more enjoyable. Also, higher output power will open a door to a better synergy with more demanding headphones.

    In terms of an upgrade, the market has changed a lot since the original Opus#1 was released, and now you have more choices. If a pure music playback without Bluetooth and without access to Google Play and streaming apps is what you are after, and you want a straight forward simple audio interface with dual uSD (over 800 GB of internal storage) or you have a DAC/amp with an optical input and looking for a touch screen digital transport – Opus#1S is a very good option. In general, with so many choices, try to make a list of all the available DAPs within your budget, write down their Pros and Cons, figure out your priorities, and then decide which one is the right one for you.
    1. BartSimpson1976
      I would add as a con that they still use really outdated MicroUSB connector for a 2018 release. Should have been USB C. Everything else sounds great, I liked the original #1 already!
      BartSimpson1976, Feb 23, 2018
    2. rolli1949
      I guess the Cayin N 5 ii is the better option in my opinion
      rolli1949, Feb 26, 2018
  9. narco dacunzolo
    A SIMPLE YET A GREAT SOUNDING DAP
    Written by narco dacunzolo
    Published Feb 15, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - DYNAMIC

    POWERFUL SOUND

    SIMPLE AND FAST UI

    BATTERY LIFE( CONSIDERING THE SCREEN RESOLUTION AND BRIGHTNESS WITH THE POWERFUL OUTPUT)

    RIGHT AND LEFT CHANNEL SEPARATION
    Cons - NOT ONE OF THE MOST NATURAL SOUND( A BIT FUN FOR MY TASTE)

    FEATURES( BUT IF FOR YOU SOUND QUALITY IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN FEATURES WILL NOT BE A PROBLEM)
    perfettissimasd.jpg


    In a world where DAP companies follow the route of WiFi and streaming apps like Spotify and Tidal , the Bit with its new Opus 1s choosed a more traditional approach for its audio portable device.
    Yeah, streaming gives you more possibilities and access to millions of tracks, but for me and hope is the same for you, the most important thing is audio quality, and under this point Opus 1s will not surely disappoint you.
    The Bit is a company based in Korea, quite famous in the audiophile world, in particular with its previous models: Opus1, Opus2, Opus 3.
    I have never had the opportunity to test the original Opus 1, but as stated by the company 1s will retain the sound of the audio-opus series praised by users, enhancing ultra low range and high range sound compared to the existing Opus1, giving you a more dynamic sound.
    Opus1s is based on Android operation systems compatible with the ARM Cortex-A9, up to 1.4GHz with the Quad-Core CPU DDR3 1GB to express the best possible sound, providing bit to bit decoding and supporting wide variety of audio formats. This DAP uses two CS43198 DACs released by Cirrus Logic in 2017. Each DAC manages the left and right channels separately to produce the best sound with the higher resolution and wider spacious feel. At the end of this review you can find all the specs about this product.
    Opus 1s unit was sent me as a sample unit, I am not affiliated with the company and all observations and opinions will be only my own. Would like to thanks the Bit team for sending me this unit giving me the opportunity to experience such a powerful and dynamic sound .

    PRICE: 399 USD
    LINK OFFICIAL SITE: http://www.audio-opus.com/?page_id=17532
    LINK MUSICKETECK: https://shop.musicteck.com/collections/opus/products/opus-1s-hi-res-portable-digital-audio-player


    FIRST IMPRESSION:
    Just to be honest, I was really interested in this new product and when the courier knocked to my door giving me the pack and “customs taxes”, I couldn’t wait to plug my favourite headphones and get involved in a musical pleasure.
    I plugged in my microSD card and started to listen to my favourite palylists. First impression was surely excellent: its construction is excellent giving you a premium feeling since the first moment.
    Listening to Lana Del Rey “Lust For Life” I was just amazed how powerful and dynamic the sound was.
    Voices were very natural and visceral with a great amount of details. The first thing you will notice listening to Opus 1s will be the dynamic and rithm.

    perfetdirvjegjebr.jpg perfetta100.jpg

    PACKAGING: packaging is quite simple and elegant at the same time. In the box you can find the DAP, manuals, warranty card, a USB cable and an extra screen protector in the box, with one applied on 1s from the factory. In my box there was a leather case, but don’t know if you will find it right out of the box.
    The leather case is sent for 69 USD and, to be honest, it’s a bit overpriced, but it fits very good with 1s and has a real premium feeling( it doesn’t compromise pressure level of the volume or play/pause buttons). I usually don’t like to talk much about packaging and other staff cause my main focus is on the sound quality, but overall the unboxing experience of this DAP surely will not disappoint you.

    BUILD QUALITY/UI:
    Build quality is excellent, and to be honest is a really nice-looking product: it combines an elegant outline with smooth shape lines. The shell is made from ABS plastic, the 4-inch 400×800 IPS touch panel is covered with a sheet of tempered glass that gives a premium feeling to the product. On the right corner there are three buttons for pause/go on or behind with the tracks; on the left corner two volume buttons and memory card slot. The BIT has also installed 32GB of internal memory, which would mean a theoretical maximum of around 540GB of space will be available if utilising dual 256GB microSD cards as well (actual space will be lower due to space required by the operating system, etc).

    perfetta 2.jpg

    On the bottom there is a microUSB port, you can find 3.5 Headphone Line Out with the power button and the 2.5mm Balanced Out on the top.
    The Opus 1s is available in 2 colors, namely Lapis Blue and deep Purple. What really impressed me was the Display: it’s very bright and well calibrated, thanks to this, you will easily use it on the go. Resolution is quite good and touch is very fast. What really love of this company is that they offer always great sound and build quality at the right price. You may think 399 USD for a DAP without streaming services are too much, but if not so, cause if you really love Music and sound quality you surely will not regret to buy one.

    perfetta 1000.jpg
    The software is based on a highly-customized version of Android 5 which has apparently been optimised for portable audio devices. The Bit made a wonderful job with the UI, that is clean and really fast and I never found a bug or a slowdowns ( will update my review, if will find any in the future).

    The internal 4000mAh battery requires around 4 hours to charge from dead flat, and should give the OPUS1S as stated by the company a maximum playback time of roughly 11 hours. For me battery is quite good, and was able to use it for more or less 4 straight days without charging ( my typical use is 3/4 hours per day at 75 volume level and half level brightness).
    Construction is solid and it is not too much big or heavy, this thing combined with the bright screen makes this DAP a must-have for portable use.

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    SOUND:
    Audio impressions have been taken after 100 hours of burn-in testing with different premium IEMs and headphones: Rhapsodio Infinity, Unique Melody Me.1, Aroma Audio Yao, Custom Art Fibae 2, Rhapsodio Saturn, iBasso IT01, Periodic Audio Mg,Be,Ti, Meze 99 Neo/Classics and Mitchell and Johnson Mj2.
    A phrase to describe Opus 1s could be: strong, full-body and dynamic sound. Its sound signature is more on warm side than natural one. I usually prefer a natural or clean reproduction, but with the time I am really enjoying this approach to music. Opus 1s has a perfect combination of warm and natural sound resulting in an enjoyable and extremely engaging signature capable to bring tons of details in particular with 24bit tracks. First time I used it, Damn!! was really amazed how powerful is and wasn't expecting it to be so.

    BASS:
    Bass response is excellent, very full and punchy. It doesn’t cover other frequencies, but stays here with a muscular and authoritative approach to the music giving a great dynamic to the sound reproduction.
    Rumble and impact are outstanding with that slam that always bring me to move at the rhythm of music.

    MIDS: voices on Opus 1s are extremely clean and near-to-life. They are neither too much in face or behind, but they are well placed in the centre. Both male and female vocals are well portayed and they are very detailed( in certain tracks I can really listen and feel the throat vibration and lips movement from the singer.

    HIGHS: I could say that treble response is “relaxed”, stays a bit behind, but with a good clarity and details. You will get an extended treble response but without harshness and sibilance issues, but if you are a treble-ish man and lover of sparkles, this DAP will not be a great choice for you. If you need an organic and full sound Opus 1s will be surely a great choice.


    SOUNDSTAGE:
    Soundstage is quite good and well extended in all directions, with a great width and height and excellent depth. It will give you a good holographic space, but never an “out of the head sound”. I could say that Opus 1s is able to bring a realistic and coherent space around you with a good layering. What really impressed me was the right/left channel separation: in certain tracks you will easily and clearly listen to instruments playing on the right channel and at the same time other instruments on the left one.


    SINERGY:

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    OPUS 1S WITH RHAPSODIO INFINITY: they have excellent synergy. Overall I found the Opus 1s to do a great job with multi-balanced IEMs. You will find a great instrumental separation with a lot of “hair” between mids, highs and bass. This DAP gives a better dynamic and overall a punchier and faster bass response. Voices are very clean and detailed, but not so much natural. Highs are very clean and airy. Soundstage improves a bit in particular in depth.


    OPUS 1S WITH Aroma Audio Yao: Opus1s enhances what I loved of this IEM: voices reproduction and dynamic. Bass improves a lot, portraying a more rounded and fuller bass response, this is a very good thing, since this IEM lacks a bit in bass quantity. Voices are very organic and natural with an incredible life-like feeling. Highs are clear, but a bit behind, so you will get a very enjoyable and relaxed sound.
    If you love sparkles and highs in evidence this combo will not be a good choice for you. Opus 1s drives very well this IEM and never found any needs of more power.
    Overall this setup will give you a very full and organic sound.

    OPUS 1S WITH UNIQUE MELODY ME.1: they have a good synergy, but not excellent: I found other setup to have a better sound, in particular wider soundstage with this IEM. Overall Opus can drive quite well ME.1 ( this planar IEM requires a good source to really shine) giving you a good bass response, full and with a lot of slam and rumbles. Mids are more organic and fuller.

    OPUS 1S WITH CUSTOM ART FIBAE 2: this combo is one of the best sound I have ever experienced in mid-fi price range. Reproduction is very fast with a great dynamic and excellent instrument separation.
    Soundstage improves a lot, in particular in width. The great right/left channel separation of the Opus 1s gives a great synergy to this combo.

    OPUS 1S WITH RHAPSODIO SATURN: Soundstage improves a lot, giving a wider and very coherent sense of space around you. This Dap gives a fuller and more quantity bass response to this IEM( maybe too much for my tastes). Voices are more present and detailed and very organic.

    OPUS 1S WITH iBasso IT01: this combo will give you a spectacular dynamic and transient response.
    Overall reproduction will be very fun and engaging.

    OPUS 1S WITH PERIODIC AUDIO Be: this setup really impressed me. Be needs a good source and amplification to really shine and Opus 1s will give all the power output you will need. Damn! This is really audiophile sound: everything is coherent and well balanced, with a full and organic sound and excellent dynamic. Both female and male voices are very full and organic. Soundstage is not massive, but very coherent and natural.

    OPUS 1S WITH MITCHELL AND JOHNSON MJ2: I found better sources for this headphone, cause Opus 1s is prone to give a more relaxed high response and doesn’t give justice to the electrostatz technology that really shines with a more clean source.(MJ2 thanks to its electrostatz technology has one of the most natural and extended highs I have ever listened on this price range).

    OPUS 1S WITH MEZE 99 NEO/CLASSICS: if you bought these headphones for their organic and full sound, Opus 1s will enhance these characteristics giving you a fuller and faster bass response, with clean a detailed voices and a more organic sound. Soundstage improves a lot, in particular in width.
    Dynamic is very good, with a great sense of rhythm and tempo.

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    CONCLUSION: OPUS 1S is one of the best mid-fi DAP I have ever tried( is surely better than my Fiio x5 iii, yes Fiioiii has more features with wifi and so is able to work with streaming apps like Spotify or Tidal, but can’t compete under sound quality with 1S, in particular the last one has a better dynamic, a fuller sound and a bit wider soundstage.
    This DAP is simple, but has everything you will need to enjoy your playlists. The fast UI, the great build quality and first of all the sound quality will not surely disappoint you.


    PROS:

    DYNAMIC

    POWERFUL SOUND

    SIMPLE AND FAST UI

    BATTERY LIFE( CONSIDERING THE SCREEN RESOLUTION AND BRIGHTNESS WITH THE POWERFUL OUTPUS)

    RIGHT AND LEFT CHANNEL SEPARATION

    CONS:

    NOT ONE OF THE MOST NATURAL SOUND( A BIT FUN FOR MY TASTE)

    FEATURES( BUT IF FOR YOU SOUND QUALITY IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN FEATURES WILL NOT BE A PROBLEM)

    SPECS:

    DAC Cirrus Logic CS43198 x 2 Cirrus Logic CS4398 x 2
    Output Bal. 3.4Vrms
    Unbal. 3.1Vrms Bal. 2.3Vrms
    Unbal. 2.1Vrms
    SNR Bal. 125dB @1KHz
    Unbal. 123dB @1KHz Bal. 115dB @1kHz
    Unbal. 114dB @1kHz
    Crosstalk Bal. 142dB @1KHz
    Unbal. 140dB @1KHz Bal. 135dB @1kHz
    Unbal. 130dB @1kHz
    THD+N Bal. 0.0005%@1KHz
    Unbal . 0.0007% @1KHz Bal. 0.0007% @ 1kHz
    Unbal. 0.0007% @ 1kHz
      Don BIM, iano, mgunin and 1 other person like this.
    1. gibby
      How's synergy with Campfire Audio Andromeda?
      gibby, Apr 9, 2018
      narco dacunzolo likes this.
    2. narco dacunzolo
      Never tried andromeda, sorry
      narco dacunzolo, Apr 9, 2018