Monoprice Monolith Liquid Spark - By Alex Cavalli
May 12, 2021 at 10:34 AM Post #541 of 549

tamleo

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I got my Liquid Spark!!!

First impression is good, tonality actually surprisingly close to the Dragonfly Red that I'm trying to upgrade from. Although Dragonfly Red is a bit more v shaped while Liquid Spark is a little bit more mid forward but otherwise fairly close. They each do different stuff a tiny bit better and tiny bit worse relatively to each other.

Though I do have a few questions now. Do burn in effect sound much? Manufacturer recommend 100 hours burn in should I keep letting it burn in before judging it pre-maturely?

Also first impression is that...... hmmmm......... how should I put it. Everything sounds right and sounds good but also nothing really stands out if that makes sense? Is that just the nature of the amp? What I mean is that, the treble is pretty good, but not the best I've heard, mid is pretty good, but also not the best I've heard, bass too........etc......

Like for example my Vali 2+ is really good at treble and separation but lacking impact, my Project Polaris is very good mid range detail and bass impact but lacks sub bass and treble detail. Liquid Spark is very good at everything but not the best at anything LOL (if that makes sense).

Should I just be patient and let it burn in and also letting my brain adjust to it? Initial thought is that like I said tonality is very close to Dragonfly Red and technicality is a tiny tiny bit better than Dragonfly Red, so do I really need 2 amps sounding so close to each other? Or should I just return it and get something more different to complement each other?

Though I know I just got it that's kind of why I'm asking to see what are you guys' long term impression. Anything would be helpful, thanks!
There is no fatal downside in the sound at the price point of an amp is quite spectacular, isn't it?
 
May 12, 2021 at 10:39 AM Post #542 of 549

Hyde00

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There is no fatal downside in the sound at the price point of an amp is quite spectacular, isn't it?
Oh yeah definitely agree.

Usually most amps (headphone too) it generally goes like "this is amazing if only it doesn't have this minor issue......". Liquid Spark is very good all around, the build and finish is great too.

I'll keep listening through out today and update my impression as it goes lol.
 
May 12, 2021 at 11:02 AM Post #543 of 549

PlantsmanTX

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I got my Liquid Spark!!!

First impression is good, tonality actually surprisingly close to the Dragonfly Red that I'm trying to upgrade from. Although Dragonfly Red is a bit more v shaped while Liquid Spark is a little bit more mid forward but otherwise fairly close. They each do different stuff a tiny bit better and tiny bit worse relatively to each other.

Though I do have a few questions now. Do burn in effect sound much? Manufacturer recommend 100 hours burn in should I keep letting it burn in before judging it pre-maturely?

Also first impression is that...... hmmmm......... how should I put it. Everything sounds right and sounds good but also nothing really stands out if that makes sense? Is that just the nature of the amp? What I mean is that, the treble is pretty good, but not the best I've heard, mid is pretty good, but also not the best I've heard, bass too........etc......

Like for example my Vali 2+ is really good at treble and separation but lacking impact, my Project Polaris is very good mid range detail and bass impact but lacks sub bass and treble detail. Liquid Spark is very good at everything but not the best at anything LOL (if that makes sense).

Should I just be patient and let it burn in and also letting my brain adjust to it? Initial thought is that like I said tonality is very close to Dragonfly Red and technicality is a tiny tiny bit better than Dragonfly Red, so do I really need 2 amps sounding so close to each other? Or should I just return it and get something more different to complement each other?

Though I know I just got it that's kind of why I'm asking to see what are you guys' long term impression. Anything would be helpful, thanks!
As I remember, I didn't notice any difference after 100 hours.
 
Jul 16, 2021 at 10:20 AM Post #545 of 549

PlantsmanTX

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I was wondering if the pre-amp RCA output is the same as front 1/4"? Can I plug in my headphones to a RCA converted port and get the same output and sound?
Interesting question. I've never tried it. I searched the Liquid Spark thread on ASR for "preamp", and someone wrote "I think its volume changes with the volume knob. I actually tried RCA output. The sound *seems* different too". I don't know what they mean by "different", but I'm assuming it didn't damage the headphones.

Edit: Here's Amir's answer to him. If I'm reading this right, he says the RCA output goes above 8 volts.

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...d-spark-headphone-amp.5224/page-2#post-115921
 
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Jul 16, 2021 at 10:29 AM Post #546 of 549

Hyde00

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I was wondering if the pre-amp RCA output is the same as front 1/4"? Can I plug in my headphones to a RCA converted port and get the same output and sound?
Uh I'm not expert in this but........ to my understanding that RCA output typically is consider as line level output which has higher impedance and some other difference compare to the headphone out. Generally speaking line level output will not be loud enough to drive your headphone. Again I'm not expert in this so I can't explain it any better LOL.

Now the question is......... is pre-amp RCA out similar to RCA out in concept??? That I'm not too sure.

Though why would you want to plug into the pre-amp RCA? Is it because you want to have 2 headphone jack?
 
Jul 16, 2021 at 6:21 PM Post #547 of 549

exe163

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Uh I'm not expert in this but........ to my understanding that RCA output typically is consider as line level output which has higher impedance and some other difference compare to the headphone out. Generally speaking line level output will not be loud enough to drive your headphone. Again I'm not expert in this so I can't explain it any better LOL.

Now the question is......... is pre-amp RCA out similar to RCA out in concept??? That I'm not too sure.

Though why would you want to plug into the pre-amp RCA? Is it because you want to have 2 headphone jack?
I was planning build a small device that joins headphone and mic signals together into a single TRRS so that I can connect to my Macbook directly via one cable. I can use the front headphone jack (semi-permenantly attached to this "box") and that's one way. But if I can free up the front headphone jack, it would both look better and allow me to quickly plugin another headphone through the 1/4" jack.

Audio path: Macbook Pro source (3.5mm) -> "box" -> LS amp -> "box" -> TRRS HD 6XX
Mic path: Macbook Pro source (same 3.5mm) -> "box" -> TRRS HD 6XX

I tried using the pre-amp out for my headphone as I happened to have all the adapters. It sounded a bit quieter. Not sure if this is because of the crappy and long RCA wires I have or pre-amp is less powerful. But I was able to control volume with the same knob. Will there be adverse effects still if I "upgrade" my wires to something shorter and use that to drive my 6XX? I am more afraid of distortion and not enough current powering the headphones given the same loudness.


Interesting question. I've never tried it. I searched the Liquid Spark thread on ASR for "preamp", and someone wrote "I think its volume changes with the volume knob. I actually tried RCA output. The sound *seems* different too". I don't know what they mean by "different", but I'm assuming it didn't damage the headphones.

Edit: Here's Amir's answer to him. If I'm reading this right, he says the RCA output goes above 8 volts.

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...d-spark-headphone-amp.5224/page-2#post-115921
If I am understanding this correctly, the max V output is close to the rated headphone jack output of around 9V. So the pre-out has a similar max amplification as the main headphone out. My subjective volume level seems to match this observation.
https://downloads.monoprice.com/files/specsheets/33304_Specsheet_181025.pdf
 
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Jul 23, 2021 at 8:37 AM Post #548 of 549

bru87tr

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I've been looking to pick up another power supply. I travel often and have been taking my spark with me because of its compact size, the only issue is I have to mess with my pc's cable management every time I go I take it. Anyone have any luck tracking down a second power supply for the spark?
I know this is an old post, but I found the exact power supply on ebay or amazon. Can't remember but will check my orders. It was cheap like $10 and the same exact one that came with the Liquid spark.
 

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