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Cowon Plenue R - All Round Player

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by kel77, Jul 14, 2017.
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  1. twister6 Contributor
    It will depend on your headphones pair up and experimenting with sound shaping, and of course your personal taste. Sometimes, I start with a custom preset and play with BBE, enable MP, and play with EQ. Or start with presets, if I'm feeling lazy :) But with PM2 I often try to brighten the sound, making it more resolving. Don't find the same urge with P2 or PR.
     
  2. NewEve
    Definitively agree with the pairing. With both my Grado's GR8e & SR325e, the JetEffect "BBE Headphone 3" brings the increased bass and soundstage a portable headphone amp such as my Alo Audio Contiental V5 brings with the added benefit of increasing the details.

    In conclusion, after reading your review, it seems that I made the right choice going for the PM2 as I was purposfully looking for a warm(er) sound signature.

    I'm just curious, how/when do you hear the hissing noise? I don't seem to notice it and I'm genuinely curious.

    Thanks again!
     
  3. twister6 Contributor
    When you hit Play, turn the volume to zero.

    You will only hear it with sensitive and/or low impedance IEMs. Of course, all will depend on your ear sensitivity. And often, a low level of hissing won't be even audible when you are playing at normal listening volume.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2017
  4. Arghavan
    Thanks for the great review.
    I noticed you didn't mention the pairing with T5pv2 this time. Is it because PR can't drive it properly? I happen to have a pair of AK T1p and they have the same impedance and share many of their characteristics.
     
  5. someyoungguy
    Great review! I've think you've tipped me over the edge and this will be my next DAP.

    Two questions about matching the R with balanced out and headphone impedance:
    I still have trouble trying to convert a Vrms value on a spec sheet to what kind of headphone impedance a DAP can drive. I'm looking at the new HD660S', which have half the impedance of the HD650, at 150 ohms. Will the Plenue R be able to drive these?

    Also, I've never had any headphones/IEMS with balanced cables so this is probably a complete newbie question. Looking over the specs for the HD660S', they have a 4.4mm pin arrangement of: L+,L-,R+,R-, ground (from tip to closest to cable - https://en-nz.sennheiser.com/global-downloads/file/9386/HD660S_Manual_1017.pdf).
    The Plenue R has a 2.5 mm balanced port with the pin arrangement: R-,R+,L+,L- (http://www.cowonglobal.com/product_wide/PLENUER/product_page_4.php). This is the same as on the P2.

    Obviously I'd need a 4.4 mm to 2.5 mm adaptor to pair these up, but can you get adaptors which alter the pin arrangement? From my basic knowledge of electronics, I'd be guessing as long as the two tip-most pins are +/- for one side, and the two pins closest to the cable are +/- for the other, then it shouldn't really matter which is which, so the HD660S' would work with the Plenues? Surely the pin arrangement is fairly standard across the industry? I'm guessing in your use of the Plenue R or P2 you've never had any issues with pairing with a balanced headphone/IEM?
     
  6. twister6 Contributor
    Just tested it with T5p2, using TWag v3 cable. Pair up is actually good from balanced output, but just ok from SE. Using headphone gain, volume level is 90/140 in both cases (comfortable listening level, which also had plenty of headroom for adjustment). From 3.5mm single ended port it sounds too smooth, even to the point of being a little veiled. From 2.5mm balanced output, the soundstage expands, background is blacker, bass is more articulate and controlled, and treble has more sparkle - a rather noticeable sound refinement.
     
  7. twister6 Contributor
    If you are buying from a reputable seller/manufacturer who knows what they are doing, the adaptor will be done right because they will get all the wiring diagrams to match contacts correctly.

    Regarding cable termination, not quite sure, but I think HD660S comes with 2 removable cables, one with 1/4" jack and another one with 4.4mm TRRRS balanced jack. Cable is removable, I would get another cable with balanced termination. I haven't seen any adapters going from 4.4mm to 2.5mm, only the other way around. Maybe it's because no 4.4mm female connectors available yet?

    Regarding pair up, I have no idea. Don't go just by a power rating or impedance. Sometimes you have to actually listen to it, to see if you like it or not. It will drive it loud enough, but I don't know how it will sound between more powerful DAPs or standalone desktop DAC/amp vs PR. It is a good news they dropped from 300ohm to 150ohm, many people were saying these 300 ohm Senns were not easy to drive. But, I can't tell you without actually listening to it.
     
  8. someyoungguy
    Ah yeah, that would make more sense, just replace the cable! Doh. Might end up more expensive but ah well, I'll just have to bite the bullet for a more reliable outcome. After a look around I could only find one or two adapters around (e.g.: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B076326KTB/_encoding=UTF8?coliid=I2803TSXERBZ1O&colid=2G26SJ05YDFKM)
     
  9. twister6 Contributor
  10. NewEve
    Ok, thanks.

    Indeed, can't hear anything with my Grado's GR8e--will try with the SR325e when I'm back.
     
  11. Arghavan
    Interesting. I thought since there is no dual mono / dual DAC implementation hence no "true" balanced output there should be no discernible difference in sound, except for you know, loudness.
     
  12. Love Music
    Twister, was wondering how the r compares to the dx80? Which one has better sq?
     
  13. twister6 Contributor
    For me, it's PR. DX80 has a warmer tonality and hisses a lot more, doesn't work as well with many of my sensitive multi BA iems. It's a matter of which one pairs up better with your headphones/earphones. PR also has an advantage of a more advanced touch interface and GUI and JetEffects. Though, you also need to keep in mind that PR cost twice as much.
     
  14. Love Music
    True. That's why thinking would it be worth the extra price if hissing is not much of a problem for me.
     
  15. twister6 Contributor
    What are your headphones/earphones? And what other DAPs are you considering as an alternative?
     
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