NEXUM AQUA headphone amp Kickstarter; Please Report!
Aug 7, 2015 at 9:19 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 17


New Head-Fier
Jun 16, 2012
Hello all. A company named "NEXUM" has a kickstarter going, and successfully so, for a mediocre portable headphone amp/DAC.

Normally I'd laugh at the false claim of;

"High quality audio file + Pricy headphones + High power amplifier = PERFECT MUSIC

Spotify + Mediocre Headphones + AQUA = EQUALLY PERFECT MUSIC"

It gets worse, though. They then claim;

"AQUA is the world's only battery-free amplifier especially designed for headphones."

I think Schiit would disagree, and I wouldn't be too surprised if there were more out there, either.

People who frequent this site or other similar audio centric places know that first claim is absurd. The second claim though is unarguably false. Please report this campaign.
Aug 7, 2015 at 1:43 PM Post #2 of 17
What I don't understand is that the cable connecting the amp/ dac to the phone looks to be fixed so how does it connect to an iPhone AND an Android phone. Must be different versions.
On the face of it though this seems brilliant. The price makes a mockery of most of the other stuff out there. Currently $59. 
Two thirds the price & a scarcely believable one fifth of the weight of the Full of Sch**t. This thing only weighs 16 grams. Plus it doesn't have a totally infantile name should make it an automatic choice for many including me.
Aug 7, 2015 at 2:03 PM Post #3 of 17
As far as battery free amp there was the similarly miniscule in-line Fiio E1 but that was just an amp wheras the Aqua (and the much bulkier product from the company beginning with 'S' ) is a DAC as well, 24 bit at that.
Aug 7, 2015 at 2:18 PM Post #4 of 17
Way to show your maturity by not only ignoring the points I made but also slandering a well received audio company with nothing objective.

Also your ignorance on the topic, as the AQUA page *clearly* shows that there are two versions.
Aug 7, 2015 at 3:13 PM Post #5 of 17
Not slandering the company's products at all. They have quite a following  & I'm sure they're  pretty good, albeit not that popular this side of the pond (price and availability maybe ?).
Just the name . You talk of maturity, honestly do they have a mature naming system. I just personally find it embarassing and cringe worthy so much so that I cant utter their name or take them seriously. Maybe I'm just a reserved 'Brit' who doesn't need to swear for laughs but I'm entitled to my opinion and where I spend my hard earned.
And yes sorry please, please forgive me for missing that info. However  ignorance can be shown in other more harmful ways, maybe  by someone who belittles a product that genuinely brings something new, looks to be nicely designed at  an amazing price and has yet to be even heard. 
Aug 7, 2015 at 3:18 PM Post #6 of 17
Thank you for taking this thread incredibly off topic. You have discussed nothing of the topic at hand and instead have given the benefit of the doubt to an unknown company who has outwardly lied in their marketing. Please stop posting here as I'm simply trying to garner attention to the fact that this company has secured a lot of money from people through farses.
Aug 7, 2015 at 3:51 PM Post #7 of 17
I'll get back on topic shall I ?  in saying this on the face of it is exactly what I'm looking for. A modest, lightweight, sleekly designed (the remote is uniquie: Fiio E1 accepted) and very nicely priced DAC/amp for my phone. I'm sure if the product is even reasonable a lot of other people will be interested in this. 
I cant think why you think you have the right to slander them or boss me about for that matter. You dont own the thread just because you sarted it.
There may be some inaccuracies in their claims but give them a chance. This for me has potential to be a very exciting product for people who don't want to lug around bricks to listen to their Spotify or Hi Res content alike in decent enough quality for not much money.
By the way my Voyager amp can alredadymake mediocre headphones sound good (via Contour button) so I admit there's nothing new there.
Have a nice evening but I hope your scepticism is unfounded and this turns out to be great.
Aug 8, 2015 at 11:25 AM Post #8 of 17
So I stumbled upon their Kickastarter page and came here looking for a discussion about it. 
It looks like they're completely unaware of other products on the market like the HRT dsp and COZOY Astrapi. The HRT dsp is lighter than the AQUA which they claim to be the lightest on the market (HRT is 5.6g while the AQUA is 16g and Astrapi at 9.5g) and both the HRT and Astrapi are way more flexible than the Aqua since you can connect them to Android, iOS and PCs. While the current Kickstarter price of 59$ (retail 79$) is less than the current price of the HRT (69.99$ retail) and the Astrapi (129$ retail) you get a lot less flexibility unless you're an avid iPhone user and ONLY want to use this with your phone. And since the cable is attached you're pretty much screwed if it ever breaks.
Of course we won't know anything about the SQ yet since the product has yet to be delivered but I see no reason to buy this over the HRT unless you're an iPhone user who wants it because it looks better.
Btw, I bought the Astrapi, got it for 100$ on Aliexpress and I love it! Great sound, love the look and feel as well as the clip, included cables are nice though I won't ever use the lightning connector.
Aug 8, 2015 at 1:28 PM Post #9 of 17
Okay it's not the lightest then surprising (although in its defence that weight does probably include connecting cable which might weigh all of a gramme!?!) Still a bit cheaper and has a remote built in. All I all not as uniquely first seems.

But you never know might sound like a Hugo!
Sep 23, 2015 at 2:04 AM Post #11 of 17
FYI from the Kickstarter:
DAC chip: WM8533 24bit/192Khz 
Headphone AMP: MAX97220 
output power: 125mW @ 32ohm 
SNR : -108dB 
DNR : 106dB 
THD+N : -89.5dB 
Crosstalk : -95dB 
Recommend headphone impedance : 16~300ohm
There are no reviews because it's not shipped yet.  5 days left in the campaign as of writing this and they list shipping date as November of this year.
Sep 23, 2015 at 4:28 AM Post #12 of 17
FYI from the Kickstarter:

[COLOR=0F2105]DAC chip: WM8533 24bit/192Khz [/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]
[/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]Headphone AMP: MAX97220 [/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]
[/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]output power: 125mW @ 32ohm [/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]
[/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]SNR : -108dB [/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]
[/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]DNR : 106dB [/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]
[/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]THD+N : -89.5dB [/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]
[/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]Crosstalk : -95dB [/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]
[/COLOR][COLOR=0F2105]Recommend headphone impedance : 16~300ohm[/COLOR]

[COLOR=0F2105]There are no reviews because it's not shipped yet.  5 days left in the campaign as of writing this and they list shipping date as November of this year.[/COLOR]

Is that a wolfson Dac?
Apr 2, 2016 at 10:16 AM Post #15 of 17
Hello everybody. I'm new here and Im a owner of a nexum aqua amplifier, so this is my review.
I received it 2 weeks ago and I was so excited to try it. I have a xiaomi mi note phone, that already has a 192khz 24bit dac built in, but I wanted to try it so I backed the project on kickstarter. First of all there are two versions, one with micro usb and the other with lightning connector(I asked for a micro usb one). The amp looks really good, with aluminum finiture a it's really lightweight. Unfortunately my opinion about the sound quality is completely bad. I listened to it with two kind of phones, xiaomi piston hybrid and bower&wilkins P7, and with both I noticed a significant and inexplicable amount of mid - low frequencies. Maybe this is because normal listeners use to be impressed not so much by sound quality but by boom basses: Nevertheless this can't be called an hifi system. Furthermore the signal seems to be compressed, everything is confused and very uncomfortable to my ears: I couldn't listen to it for more than 10 minutes. And when you plug it into the usb port it's not recognized immediately, sometimes the sound doesn't come out, but this may depends on my phone model. I wrote to nexum guys telling all these things and they said that their engineer will work on this,but I'm not so hopeful.
Anyway, maybe with other phones there could be an improvement, but the internal dac of my xiaomi sound really fantastic, way better than this amp.

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