Help me decide. Portable amp for Rio Karma + UE-10 Pro
May 24, 2004 at 11:34 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 18

gorman

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Hi to everybody!

I would like to get a portable amplifier for my Ultimate Ears UE-10 Pro, that I will be using with Rio Karma.

I'm currently torn between Headsave Mint-Vibe, Xin Super Micro (size for this is amazing, does it really get 18 hours of life out of an AAA alkaline?) and Headroom's Total Airhead.

Portability is important as I do not want to get too bogged down with weight.

I hope the experts of this forum will be able to help me deciding between the three or, as it's obviously possible, suggest a different, and better, choice.

Thanks in advance for your time!
smily_headphones1.gif
 
May 24, 2004 at 11:40 AM Post #2 of 18

penbat

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Quote:

Originally Posted by gorman
Hi to everybody!

I would like to get a portable amplifier for my Ultimate Ears UE-10 Pro, that I will be using with Rio Karma.

I'm currently torn between Headsave Mint-Vibe, Xin Super Micro (size for this is amazing, does it really get 18 hours of life out of an AAA alkaline?) and Headroom's Total Airhead.

Portability is important as I do not want to get too bogged down with weight.

I hope the experts of this forum will be able to help me deciding between the three or, as it's obviously possible, suggest a different, and better, choice.

Thanks in advance for your time!
smily_headphones1.gif



Superdual is extremely portable. See here for info:

http://www.fixup.net/talk/forum.asp?FORUM_ID=4

Also search for Superdual on Head-Fi

It should be available for retail in a week or two.
 
May 24, 2004 at 11:50 AM Post #3 of 18

elrod-tom

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I've just purchases a Total Airhead (one of the new models), and I'm very pleased with it. It's a substantial improvement over the older models. I have not heard the others.

The battery life on this thing is insane...it took me almost two weeks of listening almost constantly during work before the clipping indicator finally clued me in that it was time for new batteries.
 
May 24, 2004 at 12:32 PM Post #4 of 18

JaZZ

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Gorman...

...so you're really planning to carry the docking station with you -- to make use of the line out?

If yes: does the EQ affect the line-out signal? (Would be important to me.)

If no (and you'd hook up the amp to the HP out): it doesn't make sense to switch two headphone amps in series. The second amp wouldn't make the possible sonic shortcomings of the built-in amp (the actual reason for an external amp) disappear, except for some power- or capacitor-related issues, but at most add its own shortcomings to them (no amp is absolutely accurate). But AFAIK the Karma's HP out has enough power to drive every portable headphone with ease, ER-4S included, and has no serious problem with low-frequency response when coupled with low-impedance loads.

peacesign.gif
 
May 24, 2004 at 12:52 PM Post #5 of 18

gorman

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Quote:

Originally Posted by JaZZ
...so you're really planning to carry the docking station with you -- to make use of the line out?


No, I'm not. All the products have mentioned, though, refer to the user connecting the amp to the headphone out of portable players. Which is why I was led to believe that it would not be much of a problem. Quote:

Originally Posted by JaZZ
If yes: does the EQ affect the line-out signal? (Would be important to me.)


It does, but I plan on leaving it flat if at all possible.
If somebody has information on using these amp out of the HP out, by all means, share it!
smily_headphones1.gif
 
May 24, 2004 at 1:30 PM Post #6 of 18

Lisa

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I've used (well compared a bit, not actually used a lot) the Headsave Mint (not vibe, wasn't called that way a couple of weeks ago) out of the HP out of the ipf-180T. With the Grado MS1s. And what it did was give me a bit more bass a made the sound fuller. Like the notes all have a bit more body to it. I liked it better with the amp than without.
The difference isn't huge or anything. Don't know if I would have bought the amp I were only using it with the ifp player.
Don't know what the difference will be with your earphones.
 
May 24, 2004 at 1:32 PM Post #7 of 18

JaZZ

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Quote:

Originally Posted by gorman
...Which is why I was led to believe that it would not be much of a problem.


It's not a «problem» (it will work), but you wouldn't gain sound quality (in terms of accuracy) by carrying a separate amp with you in this case. All you (possibly) gain is power, while losing in the accuracy department.

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May 24, 2004 at 6:32 PM Post #8 of 18

Lisa

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JaZZ is right. I compared again and found that I loose some accuracy and gain some bass.

I guess the iRiver line-out is not exactly a second HP-out like many say because with my iRiver PCDP (not the iFP flah player) line-out this doesn't happen.
 
May 24, 2004 at 11:00 PM Post #10 of 18

iamdone

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Quote:

Originally Posted by gsferrari
There is a portable battery powered PPA on sale right now!!

Check the FS section of the forums. This is a top class amp...

Cheers!



I have a portable battery powered PPA, I find it too inconvenient and overkill to be truelly portable. It's great to take to work, home, or the park. But to be walking around with it doesn't make sense when your source is a little rio or ipod. I thought the advantage of the ue10 was to do without an amp and have the best sound you can get straight from the portable. You can then plug it into you home system and have even better sound.

I guess if you going the keep it as portable as it can, the soon to be released super dual is the way to go. I would still not remmend a portable amp unless you can get a true line-out like the ipod can with the sik din. Going through the heaphone out and then an amp will not give you the kind of improvement you are looking for.
 
May 24, 2004 at 11:19 PM Post #11 of 18

gorman

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frown.gif
You are destroying my dream!
wink.gif
Since listening from the measly headphone out of my Onkyo amp at home made the sound slightly better I thought about improving my portable experience (which is already awesome, mind).

Now I have to just hate Rio for not creating a load of accessories as is the case for iPod. Come on Rio, give us this line out cable... all the pins are there for you to make it, since you have it on the cradle...
 
May 24, 2004 at 11:46 PM Post #12 of 18

iamdone

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Quote:

Originally Posted by gorman
frown.gif
You are destroying my dream!
wink.gif
Since listening from the measly headphone out of my Onkyo amp at home made the sound slightly better I thought about improving my portable experience (which is already awesome, mind).

Now I have to just hate Rio for not creating a load of accessories as is the case for iPod. Come on Rio, give us this line out cable... all the pins are there for you to make it, since you have it on the cradle...



If you want to use a portable amp, go ahead. It should still add some improvement. The other thing is the ue10 has low impedence, so it can be easily powered vs etys er-4s which sounds much better with an amp.

I might be getting the ue10 myself but I'm not sure how soon since I got some money put away towards vacations, so it might have to wait until after my time in the sun. Once I do get the headphones, I could test them with my PPA w/diamond buffer. I'd still go ampless on the go but I might take the amp back to work if the improvement's big enough. Sorry I can't give you an answer sooner. I'm sure some other people will soon be able to test this as well.
 
May 25, 2004 at 3:38 PM Post #13 of 18

gorman

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I wrote directly to mr. Xin to see what he thinks about using his amps from the HP out.
 
May 25, 2004 at 4:00 PM Post #15 of 18

gorman

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Quote:

Originally Posted by gsferrari
Dude - get something "WORTHY" of the UE-10 !!!
eek.gif


Emmeline XP-7
Emmeline SR-71
Larocco Pocket Reference



Implying that Xin's products aren't?

I looked at Larocco PR and it doesn't seem "portable" to me. What about the other two?

Please, bear with me, I'm a total newbie regarding headphone amps.
 

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