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Meridian Explorer² Impressions Thread

Discussion in 'Portable Headphone Amps' started by click, Dec 22, 2014.
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  1. BobSmith8901
  2. kkl10
  3. kkl10
    Low volume in Manjaro linux problem solved. The issue was alsamixer. I had to run alsamixer on the terminal and manually set the ME2 volume to 100 (dB gain: 0.00).

    For some reason, it was only at 20 (dB gain: -40db) by default!

    https://imgur.com/DKOiJp9

    Now the ME2 powers the 300-ohm GMPs correctly from its own HP out. More than enough volume for me.

    Thanks @BobSmith8901

    Your link helped me figure this out sooner. The issue was indeed related to alsamixer internal settings for the ME2 sound card. Hope this helps other people with similar issues on linux.

    I don't know what the "Meridian Internal Clock Validity" is... Tried to change the setting just to see what it does, but couldn't...
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  4. BobSmith8901
    Great to hear!
     
  5. tvr2500m
    Polarity inversion? I have an Explorer 2. It sounds just fine. Well, it's more than that. Sound quality, convenience, cosmetics, and versatility are excellent. (There is SO much excellent audio today at affordable prices, and it was NOT always this way). At the street prices of this piece (and the reasons for why the prices might be like this can be speculated) it's a very good value.

    I've used the Explorer 2 now as a full headphone amp/DAC and as a DAC, feeding its fixed analog output into an NAD D 3020. I'm using Massdrop Sennheiser HD-6XXs and 58X Jubilees, Hifiman HE-400is, and less often Thinksound ON2s, and 1MORE Triple Driver graphene over-ears (more like on-ears). As might be expected, the Explorer 2 sounds different through the amp/DAC compared with the analog output; this latter one, of course, it's being output through the headphone amplifier of the NAD D 3020. Overall, and as a bit of an aside from my primary question, I prefer the analog output of the Explorer 2's DAC through the NAD, rather than the Explorer 2's amp/DAC output.

    The question I have is that I've seen that the line output preserves absolute polarity (ie, is non-inverting), the headphone output inverts absolute polarity. Why is this? Why is the output polarity inverting? Does this influence the sonics of the amp/DAC output? Yes? No? If so, how?
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2018
  6. Focux
    how does this compare w something like the iFi xCAN, xDSD and Chord Mojo?
     
  7. chaturanga
    I have compared side to side iFi iDSD Black Label vs Chord Mojo vs Meridian Explorer 2.

    Here are brief impressions:

    - Mojo definetely has a narrower soundstage vs other two
    - Mojo and iFi AMP sections have huge power vs ME2
    - Mojo has thick notes vs others
    - Mojo is so much mid centric that I could not used to it. It also mid bass centric.
    - ME2 and iFi came to me more natural on music presentation, they can go thick or thin when needed, Mojo makes everything over bodied for my taste

    I prefer (compared by sound) iFi > ME2 > Mojo

    But some people love Mojo madly, it's an impressive device but that thick over bodied presentation was not for me.

    Of course there are other things to be considered before buying one of those. That is about what will be your using scenario and budget.

    - ME2 does not have battery so it needs external power from source device (if source device not feeds, ME2 can be driven by additional USB power source)
    - Mojo and ME2 are portable devices that can be used on the go (ME2 needs power via OTG)
    - iFi presents most features but it's only usable on desktop setup. It's portable but not mobile.

    If you will use on your desktop and have enough budget go with iFi iDSD Black Label.

    If you like mid centric, thick, powerful presentation (you should try Mojo may be you will love it so much I don't know) go with Mojo.

    If you have limited budget and like wider more natural soundstage and notes go with ME2.
     
    Solero, yangian and Focux like this.
  8. Focux
    Thank you for your impressions!
     
    chaturanga likes this.
  9. Fungus
    While I know the me2 doesn't official work with android phones via otg cable, I've seen a few users who had success getting to work with usb audio pro player.
    The only android phone I know confirmed working is the s8. Anybody able to give me a list of compatible phones that work with the me2? It seems Samsung phones are always able to draw out more power to external peripheral compared to other manufacturer.
    I own the lg g6 quad dac variant. Unfortunate the headphone broke on mine so I can't utilize the high quality internal dac hence why I bought the me2 as a quality dac replacement.

     
  10. kkl10
    Don't even think about powering the ME2 from the smartphone alone. It'll eat up the small battery in an instant or it simply won't work. The ME2 draws too much current (max USB 2.0 power spec. 500mA) so you'd need an external power source, which would be cumbersome. It's not really adequate for mobile purposes despite the form factor. It was designed primarily for desktop or transportable setups. A Dragonfly would have been a better choice for mobile, much more power efficient (about 50 - 70mA current draw).
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2018
  11. Fungus
    I know but I can always charge the phone simultaneously via wireless charging.
    Even if an external power is needed, it'll still be more convenient then carrying around a laptop.
    So can one make a list of comparable phones that will work with the me2?
     
  12. kkl10
    Can't help there, sorry.
     
  13. Fungus
    I do think the me2 is a noticeable improvement over my laptop own dac but out of all USB powered dac I'v owned, this has by far the least driving power.
    In fact I'd say the amp section of the me2 is no more powerful the inbuilt dac in my laptop.
    Fortunately it's not a huge deal breaker as I mostly use it with an external amp via the line out.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2018
    CycleMotion likes this.
  14. Fungus
    Got my me2 working with USB audio pro player on my lg g6.
    So glad I won’t have to buy a new phone now!
    Now to find a way of soldering in a wireless connection receptive coil for wireless charging capability.
    B6703E16-7511-4E65-A1F3-6AE6819D8568.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2018
    BobSmith8901 and gemNeye like this.
  15. Fungus
    I'm having a problem where the second lod light is always dimly lit regardless if I player a high bit rate tracks eg flac or 320 bit mp3 file within USB audio player pro on my phone.
    I remember someone writing something about this in this post about having to enable a setting to get it working? Is this true?
     
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