ALO Rx Amp Impressions?
Oct 8, 2009 at 10:21 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 106

NewMexiCat

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Feb 11, 2004
Posts
393
Likes
34
Could anyone who heard this amp at RMAF give a few more impressions? From the ALO forum and the RMAF thread, it appears that the consensus was very positive on this amp, but I have not seen many specifics on the sound. I am also interested in impressions of the digital volume control and how well it scales the output for anything from IEMs to full-size phones.

While it is not as tiny as the RSA Shadow or Pico Slim, for those of us who carry iPhones, iPod Touches, or iPod Classics, the form factor looks to match up well.
 
Oct 13, 2009 at 2:57 PM Post #3 of 106

NewMexiCat

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Feb 11, 2004
Posts
393
Likes
34
Well I got tired of waiting and just went ahead and bought one! I don't have it yet, but I will post my impressions after I give it a listen.
 
Oct 18, 2009 at 6:01 AM Post #4 of 106

NewMexiCat

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Feb 11, 2004
Posts
393
Likes
34
I haven't received my Rx amp yet (it should come in some time next week), but while I'm waiting, I'd still love to hear impressions from those who have heard this amp.

Thanks!
 
Oct 18, 2009 at 7:03 AM Post #5 of 106

proteuskim

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 16, 2009
Posts
141
Likes
11
Recently received this amp as a late birthday present!!
Straight out of the box, the RX amp sounds amazing. My only qualm was that the volume goes back to its initial setting after the amp is turned off and there is no indicator for how loud your setting is. so you dont know if you're at 12:00 or 3:00 or what have you. Ken said that this was to protect your hearing so that it doesnt blast into your ears when you turn it on. not a bad feature per se but a little inconvenient on my end. however, there was no fatigue listening to it at about 8 clicks.
What can I say? the amp is beautiful. It is about the size of a ipod touch. which surprisingly isnt much weight or bulk when carrying it together with my iPod. The sound quality rivals the Lisa III although i think the Lisa still has more power. portability wise, the ALO Rx wins. Only amps i had to compare it with were the Lisa III and RSA Hornet M. I will never touch the Hornet M again.
Highs and Lows were smooth and controlled but still alive enough to keep me glued to my music. the mids were surprisingly apparent. Im listening through D7000s so yeah, what i heard was more forward mids. the recessed mid problem was gone from my D7000s. When on pause all i could hear was total silence. Vocals were very alive and smooth. Sibilance was barely noticeable on some songs but i believe that had more to do with the file itself rather than amp and headphones. I used to need my FiiO E5 in line as a bass boost with the Hornet but I have no need for it with the Rx. Not saying that the RX is a bass monster but it's good enough for me by itself. I hope this helps for now Ken. I have to do more listening and going to try the amp in line with my Korg Zero 4 mixer at a DJ gig tonight. I have a feeling I'm not going to want to take off my headphones.
 
Oct 19, 2009 at 4:55 PM Post #6 of 106

NewMexiCat

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Feb 11, 2004
Posts
393
Likes
34
Thanks for the review. The LISA III is certainly excellent company to keep!

I just got mine in the mail today and while I won't have a chance to listen until this evening, I am already impressed by the fit and finish--beautiful amp and very well sized to match an iPhone or iPod Touch.

I'll post impressions later!
smily_headphones1.gif
 
Oct 20, 2009 at 5:17 AM Post #7 of 106

shigzeo

The Hiss King
Joined
Aug 9, 2006
Posts
12,931
Likes
1,062
I am looking forward to an amp which isn't negatively affected by balanced armature paired iems. I wonder if the ALO Rx can handle the likes of dual balanced armatures, triple balanced, and the hardest of all, 3-way, triples! I look forward to hearing more comments on SQ. Cheers.
 
Oct 20, 2009 at 5:27 AM Post #8 of 106

Sherwood

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Mar 12, 2007
Posts
4,026
Likes
99
Location
Chisinau, Moldova
Quote:

Originally Posted by shigzeo /img/forum/go_quote.gif
the hardest of all, 3-way, triples!


There's always 3-way sextuples, you know...
smily_headphones1.gif
 
Oct 20, 2009 at 5:47 AM Post #9 of 106

shigzeo

The Hiss King
Joined
Aug 9, 2006
Posts
12,931
Likes
1,062
actually, there is a six-way, six unit, 8-receiver model too, but it is a prototype. JH13Pro (which I have) is the current production hi-end, but not the craziest build yet. The one before it was a 3-way 5 driver unit from HiDition in Korea (South).

But they all make amps go crazy, especially at cross over networks. the JH13Pro causes amps to peak hugely around 8k I think and 3 - 5 db bass roll off. from daps to dedicated amps, no one has been able to control it properly. I reckon a very expensive balanced amp may work it perfectly, but i am guessing.
 
Oct 22, 2009 at 6:40 PM Post #12 of 106

NewMexiCat

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Feb 11, 2004
Posts
393
Likes
34
After a couple of listening sessions, I can say without question that the Rx is a very special portable amp. I've been alternating between my Edition 8's and my Ultimate Ears UE5c to get impressions for both a full-size can and IEMs.

First off, the Rx has power, and lots of it. It drives the Edition 8's authoritatively. As anyone who has heard the Ed8's knows, the bass is very prominent in the mix, and the Ed8's IMO need proper amping to keep that bass under control. The Rx succeeds beautifully in presenting the bass as tightly and well defined as I have ever heard from the Ed8's. I have always found the midrange a bit recessed with the Ed8's but the Rx gives the mids much more susbstance and weight. Overall, the Rx seems to be able to drive full size headphones without breaking a sweat. I need to give it a real test and try it with the HD800's!
biggrin.gif


I've owned the UE5c's for years, and for those who don't know because UE doesn't actively sell this model anymore, the UE5c is a custom IEM designed during the Jerry Harvey era with a slightly tilted up bass response. They were designed as an IEM that would give a full sound with a bass presence unamped. Well, they do that, but when I listen to them unamped, I detect a real smearing of sounds. Instruments tend to blend together and get lost in the mix. The clean, crisp clarity you expect from an IEM seems to be sacrificed.

However, the Rx has given the UE5c's new life. I'm enoying them so much with the Rx I'm not sure when the Ed8's will get a listen again. The Rx really opens up the sound. The smearing is gone and the instruments are clearly separated and distinguishable. The level of detail across the spectrum is instantly noticeable. And despite the power of the Rx, the floor noise is dead silent, even with my IEMs. As a frame of reference, I've amped the UE5c's in the past with an RSA Tomahawk and while I've always enjoyed the Tomahawk's sound signature, the Rx has taken the UE5c's to another level of definition and refinement I didn't know was there. And I've had these IEMs for over 4 years! Maybe I can hold off on that JH13 purchase for awhile!

The Rx truly seems to be an amp that can handle just about any IEM, closed, or open phone you can throw at it. The build quality is first rate and the dimensions are such that it almost seems custom-made to pair with an iPhone or iPod Touch. While it is certainly larger in size than the hotly anticipated RSA Shadow or HeadAmp Pico Slim, the Rx is only a shade thicker than either of those two, so it's just as easy to slip into your pocket, especially if you are like me and you already have something the size of an iPhone right next to it. I need to post some pics of the Rx with my iPhone to illustrate how slim this amp is.

Ken at ALO Audio has done a great job with this amp, and if you are in the market to buy something in the increasingly large field of slim portable amps out there, you really should give the Rx a listen.
 
Oct 22, 2009 at 11:24 PM Post #13 of 106

FlyByNight

Head-Fier
Joined
May 18, 2007
Posts
58
Likes
0
Thank you for posting the impressions, NewMexiCat. I've been wondering what the Rx is like and why it's lacked the hype of the Pico and Shadow, appreciate you starting this thread.

Ricey, I see you have a Shadow on the way...it would be very interesting to get your comparison of that amp with the Rx!
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top