Acoustic Research M2 Audiophile-Grade Hi-Res Portable
Feb 8, 2016 at 8:36 PM Post #421 of 2,161
  I'll put your name down unfortunately the tour will be restricted to Europe to start with but it doesn't mean an exception can't be made 
wink_face.gif
. I haven't had any major issues with this new firmware and gapless is a bonus. Have to agree with you the first moment I heard this thing I fell in love and it's been a pleasure listening to her. I still love the detail, power and authority she throws out. 

Thanks.
 
I just tried the gapless playback on an REM live album and it worked just fine on the one track I had time to test. I'll listen more in the next few days. Meanwhile, based on a sample size of 1, I think gapless is fixed :wink:.
 
Feb 9, 2016 at 7:29 AM Post #422 of 2,161
I can too confirm that the M2 is now truly gapless with the V2.5.1.0 firmware. There is an audible "pop" sound that comes along about a second before the track change when playing 2822.4kHz/1bit DSF files. I have not noticed this with 192kHz/24bit FLAC files or with 44.1kHz/16 bit FLAC.
 
Firmware Bug: Sometimes there is a serious pause in the music when playing 2822.4kHz/1bit DSF files if the display turns off and then is turned on again with the power button. You can make it happen by pressing the power button a couple of times. This doesn't happen with 192kHz/24bit FLAC files.
 
Unfortunately the SanDisk Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Card Premium Edition 200 GB card still dismounts occasionally in the Music Player App, so to fix that I still need to go to the File Explorer App, browse the SD card and then go back to the player, browse back to the Album and start the music again. I'm not sure if 200GB cards are really supported or whether I should format it back to default with the SD Formatter (https://www.sdcard.org/downloads/formatter_4/) and copy all the music back again. 
 
Cheers.
 
Feb 9, 2016 at 12:14 PM Post #423 of 2,161
  I can too confirm that the M2 is now truly gapless with the V2.5.1.0 firmware. There is an audible "pop" sound that comes along about a second before the track change when playing 2822.4kHz/1bit DSF files. I have not noticed this with 192kHz/24bit FLAC files or with 44.1kHz/16 bit FLAC.
 
Firmware Bug: Sometimes there is a serious pause in the music when playing 2822.4kHz/1bit DSF files if the display turns off and then is turned on again with the power button. You can make it happen by pressing the power button a couple of times. This doesn't happen with 192kHz/24bit FLAC files.
 
Unfortunately the SanDisk Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Card Premium Edition 200 GB card still dismounts occasionally in the Music Player App, so to fix that I still need to go to the File Explorer App, browse the SD card and then go back to the player, browse back to the Album and start the music again. I'm not sure if 200GB cards are really supported or whether I should format it back to default with the SD Formatter (https://www.sdcard.org/downloads/formatter_4/) and copy all the music back again. 
 
Cheers.

It is compatible but the current 200GB cards are unreliable, I'd wait until the tech improves. I know it's a bit of a shame. I have some good news though for some of the iem users out there. Thank you for your feedback! 
 
Someone asked if it will introduce a high//low gain setting? Short answer no as unfortunately this has something to do with hardware and software capability but the M2 was designed with high end performance in mind. So AR have developed an in house specially built High-End Silver OCC Impedance Adapter that perfectly balances the dynamics for ultra-sensitive IEMS! 
 
Don't quote me on this but there could be the possibility of some freebies for existing users. This isn't the most elegant solution but if it keeps the stunning sound quality of the M2 I am all game. I've walked around with the CLAS Solo setup up before so a tiny adapter that preserves that beautifully organic detail sound is A okay in my book. 
 
Feb 9, 2016 at 4:01 PM Post #424 of 2,161
 
Steven R, What issues are you having with the gapless playback? Just interested as I haven't experienced any major flaws yet no skipping, smooth transitions etc.

 
Hmmmm... never said I had an issue with gapless. Am sure it should work great :)

Just saying the new firmware adds that capability according to the documentation. I've only listened to the unit a few times as I find these little units NEED at least 100, and better still 200, hours of break in. Very solid build quality and fast operation.
 
Feb 9, 2016 at 4:10 PM Post #425 of 2,161
   
Hmmmm... never said I had an issue with gapless. Am sure it should work great :)

Just saying the new firmware adds that capability according to the documentation. I've only listened to the unit a few times as I find these little units NEED at least 100, and better still 200, hours of break in. Very solid build quality and fast operation.

My sincerest apologies I read what you posted wrong lol. All I can say it was a late night! Sorry, glad you are enjoying the player and yes the more burn in the better they get. Looking forward to more of your impressions. 
 
Feb 10, 2016 at 5:08 AM Post #426 of 2,161

No worries, I tend to work 16 to 20 hour 'shifts' so have done the same thing.
 
Sorry the M2 didn't work out for me, just not quite 'ready' for prime time imho. Am sure the upcoming M20 will be a more finely polished unit and look forward to giving it a try.
 
Feb 14, 2016 at 11:18 AM Post #427 of 2,161
So, I've had the unit for a few days now. Here are my thoughts...

Hi res material sounds genuinely gorgeous. Fantastic dynamics. Really engaging organic sound. Hugely enjoyable. CD quality also excellent but you really can hear the step up to hi res. Not tried anything below that.

Not a massive fan of android in any form but the interface is easy and simple to use. Tidal works fine and is responsive. No problems updating the firmware. All the music tagging works well.

I've read a lot about whether the M2 is suitable for use with IEMs. I use Sennheiser IE800s. Not hearing any background noise. So if you use these IEMs then all is good. The volume control isn't overtly sensitive either.

While I love IEMs for being out and about, I think I might replace my old full size AKGs for home use. Would welcome any thoughts on a good match. Was thinking of trying Sennheiser HD700 or HD800 or Oppo PM-1.

John
 
Feb 15, 2016 at 6:38 AM Post #428 of 2,161
 
No worries, I tend to work 16 to 20 hour 'shifts' so have done the same thing.
 
Sorry the M2 didn't work out for me, just not quite 'ready' for prime time imho. Am sure the upcoming M20 will be a more finely polished unit and look forward to giving it a try.

Hi Steven, 
 
Just wondering if you could post me a short list of things you feel that need to be amended in order for the M2 to be ready for prime time. I.e UI navigation etc. I have actually found the DAP to be a huge improvement over other DAPs for its easy to use interface minus a few quirks, it isn't as clean as something like the Sony models but then again Sony have been using Android a for a lot longer. 
 
Any feedback would be great as I can pass it on to the team. Thanks in advance. Feel free to PM me with the list. 
 
Regards, 
 
Feb 15, 2016 at 6:53 AM Post #429 of 2,161
Working on the 200GB cards here's what I have so far. The M2 and upcoming M20 can both support Micro-SDXC beyond 200GB. Based on the company's extensive testing, Samsung and Toshiba cards are the most stable and reliable cards we can find, but they only offer up to 128GB. Sandisk Ultra 128GB and 200GB cards can be used, but they may repeatedly show some error messages on recognition. After multiple automatic attempts, the cards can be used.
 
Hope this is of some use. 
 
Feb 15, 2016 at 7:03 AM Post #430 of 2,161
So, I've had the unit for a few days now. Here are my thoughts...

Hi res material sounds genuinely gorgeous. Fantastic dynamics. Really engaging organic sound. Hugely enjoyable. CD quality also excellent but you really can hear the step up to hi res. Not tried anything below that.

Not a massive fan of android in any form but the interface is easy and simple to use. Tidal works fine and is responsive. No problems updating the firmware. All the music tagging works well.

I've read a lot about whether the M2 is suitable for use with IEMs. I use Sennheiser IE800s. Not hearing any background noise. So if you use these IEMs then all is good. The volume control isn't overtly sensitive either.

While I love IEMs for being out and about, I think I might replace my old full size AKGs for home use. Would welcome any thoughts on a good match. Was thinking of trying Sennheiser HD700 or HD800 or Oppo PM-1.

John

Also Great to hear you are getting on with the player so well! 
 
Couldn't agree more especially DSD files so full, rich and detailed as you said a really engaging and organic sound. Streaming tracks on Tidal even offer a really great sense of dynamics when coupled with a good recording or two. Got lost for a few hours just going through albums on there.
 
Thanks for the feedback, I am more of an IOS fan boy myself but certainly isn't difficult using the player. I found the same to be true with all of my dynamic driver earphones but this is where the impedance and sensitivity factor comes in regarding BA's and hybrids. 
 
Oh recommendations hum depends on your sound signature... HD700's/HD800 are great match for an open, fluid slightly brighter sounding pair. There is also something very underrated imo may not present as much detail as you would like but still fantastic for a warmer but detailed sound is the Master & Dynamic MH40. 
 
Feb 15, 2016 at 8:46 AM Post #432 of 2,161
Working on the 200GB cards here's what I have so far. The M2 and upcoming M20 can both support Micro-SDXC beyond 200GB. Based on the company's extensive testing, Samsung and Toshiba cards are the most stable and reliable cards we can find, but they only offer up to 128GB. Sandisk Ultra 128GB and 200GB cards can be used, but they may repeatedly show some error messages on recognition. After multiple automatic attempts, the cards can be used.

Hope this is of some use. 


Do you know if the M2 is UHS-II compatible?
 
Feb 15, 2016 at 10:19 AM Post #433 of 2,161
Also Great to hear you are getting on with the player so well! 

Couldn't agree more especially DSD files so full, rich and detailed as you said a really engaging and organic sound. Streaming tracks on Tidal even offer a really great sense of dynamics when coupled with a good recording or two. Got lost for a few hours just going through albums on there.

Thanks for the feedback, I am more of an IOS fan boy myself but certainly isn't difficult using the player. I found the same to be true with all of my dynamic driver earphones but this is where the impedance and sensitivity factor comes in regarding BA's and hybrids. 

Oh recommendations hum depends on your sound signature... HD700's/HD800 are great match for an open, fluid slightly brighter sounding pair. There is also something very underrated imo may not present as much detail as you would like but still fantastic for a warmer but detailed sound is the Master & Dynamic MH40. 


Thanks for the tip.
 
Feb 16, 2016 at 12:59 PM Post #434 of 2,161
 
Just wondering if you could post me a short list of things you feel that need to be amended in order for the M2 to be ready for prime time.

 
Thanks for your excellent question and the company can contact me via e-mail as am sure they may value my input. Simply visit www.EnjoyTheMusic.com and scroll down to the Contact Us link on the bottom right.
 
Feb 16, 2016 at 2:03 PM Post #435 of 2,161
At the risk of repeating myself, here is the change I would like to see to the UI.
 
In addition to (or instead of) the current process for selecting music by artist, I would like to be able to choose the Artist tab which would then provide a list of artists (and optionally composers). When I select an artist, I would like to see a list of albums by that artist rather than the current listing which is a list of songs. When I select an album, I would like the album to present a list of tracks in the order it appears on the album which would then allow me to select a song to begin play and play would continue to the end of the album. This make the most sense, particularly for classical music since I want to hear an entire symphony in correct order, not random individual movements from different symphonies.
 
Player is great otherwise.
 
Thanks,
Ira
 

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