Onkyo DAC Amp HA200
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dcginc

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Saw this image posted on Tone Audio's Personal Audio Facebook page but not much comes up in an online search
 
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PurpleAngel

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It looks like this HA-200 is fairly new, so only a few reviews on line, so far.
 
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tomscy2000

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This is a rebranded TEAC HA-P50B; same exact outer structure and internal workings except for two differences: (1) paint job, and (2) the Onkyo uses a MUSES8920 for the gain stage instead of the OPA1652 on the TEAC. While the exchange of a single opamp can impact sound, the core D/A portion should be the same. The current buffer should be the same as well. I used the TEAC for a brief while, and found it not only to be very solidly built, but also quite pleasant in sound signature. It's a bit laid back and relaxed, warm in overall tonality, but possesses a delicateness and sweetness found in few portable units. The ADL X1, by contrast, sounds dry and boring, not to mention more hissy (read: noisy) with sensitive IEMs and headphones.
 
Check out the existing thread on the TEAC here: http://www.head-fi.org/t/704097/new-teac-ha-p50-b-portable-dac-amp
 

 
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orcheung2002

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I owned the Teac P50. Is it possible to install the muse8920 or muse02 to Teac P50 by user himself. Thanks
 
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tomscy2000

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  I owned the Teac P50. Is it possible to install the muse8920 or muse02 to Teac P50 by user himself. Thanks
 
I don't think so. The OPA1652 only comes in the SOP-8 package, which requires soldering. This means that the HA-P50-B's PCB board doesn't have opamp sockets.
 
The MUSES8920 comes in both DIP-8 and SOP-8 --- the Onkyo probably uses the 8920 in SOP-8 to conform to the PCB board. The MUSES02 only comes in DIP-8 sockets, so it's incompatible.
 
Thus, you can desolder the OPA1652 and solder in a MUSES8920, but again, that requires soldering skills.
 
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orcheung2002

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Thanks tomscy2000 very much. I do not possess any skill so just continue to enjoy what P50 can give me. Thanks
 
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HuoYuanJia

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Interesting! Thank you for the detailed info, Tomscy.
 
I wanted to pick up the Onkyo A-9050 the other day and I was wondering why brands like Onkyo, Yamaha and Denon were ignoring the portable audio market. I guess I was wrong...
Too bad that a) the DAC is not available in Europe, and b) it's only rebranded. I like the speaker amps from Onkyo, I would like to see what they could come up with for headphones.
 
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tomscy2000

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  Interesting! Thank you for the detailed info, Tomscy.  
I wanted to pick up the Onkyo A-9050 the other day and I was wondering why brands like Onkyo, Yamaha and Denon were ignoring the portable audio market. I guess I was wrong...
Too bad that a) the DAC is not available in Europe, and b) it's only rebranded. I like the speaker amps from Onkyo, I would like to see what they could come up with for headphones.
 
Well, considering that the TEAC is really good, the Onkyo should also be really good. It's difficult to predict how changing out the OPA1652 to the MUSES8920 will change the sound; both are FET input opamps, so they have similar performance characteristics (8920 looks slightly prettier on paper). Both are well-regarded opamps and are preferred units by modern designers.
 
TEAC actually likes using the 8920 a lot, but they tend to use it for I/V LPF conversion in their DACs. Since that step is done in the charge pump of the PCM5102A here, the only thing these opamps are doing is voltage gain, and I don't know how that will impact sound.
 
The designer of both units has mentioned in a press conference that the two are voiced differently, however, owing to a different sound philosophy between the two firms (TEAC and Onkyo). Interestingly, the Onkyo spec sheet quotes its analog input performance (0.003% THD+N into 32 ohms), while the TEAC quotes its digital performance (0.001% into 32 ohms). Personally, I thought the TEAC's weak link was its analog input performance (even though it supposedly uses a discrete analog stage for the amplifier portion), but I doubt most people would be using it as an amplifier. As a DAC/amp, the TEAC is absolutely excellent, especially for its price. FYI, the HA-P50B is driven to ~2.25 Vrms, while the DAC-HA200 is driven to ~2.15 Vrms, at max. power into 32 ohms.
 
Overall, I'd say the better buy is the TEAC (slightly cheaper, slightly more powerful, slightly better performance numbers, a pleasant, well-rounded overall sound), but the differences should be minor. I assume that if someone prefers the Onkyo signature over the TEAC's, then it wouldn't be a performance penalty to go with the Onkyo.
 
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Okay, so I heard the Onkyo. It... sounds similar to the TEAC. Of course, it's practically impossible to pinpoint the difference from sonic memory. I last heard the TEAC weeks ago, and the two aren't available to be listened to side by side (one store carries the TEAC, one carries the Onkyo). But I can say this --- it sounds pretty nice. I doubt anyone would be disappointed with one and exulted with the other. More likely, anyone would enjoy both.
 
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I have much respect for you inside knowledge!
 
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Well, considering that the TEAC is really good, the Onkyo should also be really good. It's difficult to predict how changing out the OPA1652 to the MUSES8920 will change the sound; both are FET input opamps, so they have similar performance characteristics (8920 looks slightly prettier on paper). Both are well-regarded opamps and are preferred units by modern designers.
 
TEAC actually likes using the 8920 a lot, but they tend to use it for I/V LPF conversion in their DACs. Since that step is done in the charge pump of the PCM5102A here, the only thing these opamps are doing is voltage gain, and I don't know how that will impact sound.
 
The designer of both units has mentioned in a press conference that the two are voiced differently, however, owing to a different sound philosophy between the two firms (TEAC and Onkyo). Interestingly, the Onkyo spec sheet quotes its analog input performance (0.003% THD+N into 32 ohms), while the TEAC quotes its digital performance (0.001% into 32 ohms). Personally, I thought the TEAC's weak link was its analog input performance (even though it supposedly uses a discrete analog stage for the amplifier portion), but I doubt most people would be using it as an amplifier. As a DAC/amp, the TEAC is absolutely excellent, especially for its price. FYI, the HA-P50B is driven to ~2.25 Vrms, while the DAC-HA200 is driven to ~2.15 Vrms, at max. power into 32 ohms.
 
Overall, I'd say the better buy is the TEAC (slightly cheaper, slightly more powerful, slightly better performance numbers, a pleasant, well-rounded overall sound), but the differences should be minor. I assume that if someone prefers the Onkyo signature over the TEAC's, then it wouldn't be a performance penalty to go with the Onkyo.
 
You mention the TEAC being slightly more powerful, is it based on the specs on paper against the Onkyo or you are basing it on the price to performance value? I'm not very technical in these so am curious :)
 
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  You mention the TEAC being slightly more powerful, is it based on the specs on paper against the Onkyo or you are basing it on the price to performance value? I'm not very technical in these so am curious :)
 
It's based on specs on paper, but the difference isn't much, and there practically is no real-world difference. The Onkyo has 145 mW into 32 ohm while the TEAC has 160 into 32 ohm. That's it. 15 mW is not much of a difference. As I mentioned, from memory, the two sound similar, but I wouldn't be able to tell you pinpoint differences because I have not A/B'ed the two and have only listened to both on separate occasions.
 
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It's based on specs on paper, but the difference isn't much, and there practically is no real-world difference. The Onkyo has 145 mW into 32 ohm while the TEAC has 160 into 32 ohm. That's it. 15 mW is not much of a difference. As I mentioned, from memory, the two sound similar, but I wouldn't be able to tell you pinpoint differences because I have not A/B'ed the two and have only listened to both on separate occasions.
Thank you. I'm only just scratching the surface into the world of headphones and presently own a pair of Shure SE535 reds and the portable Fiio E18 dac+amp. Since I'm thinking to grab a pair of the Sennheiser HD650 sometime later this year, I suppose I'm gonna need something to power the 300ohms headphone so am currently looking at something at about $400 price range. At present after some googling I'm narrowing it down between these two and the Nuforce Icon HDP. But I wonder if they are substantially higher quality sound wise than the Fiio products for their retail prices.
 
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  Thank you. I'm only just scratching the surface into the world of headphones and presently own a pair of Shure SE535 reds and the portable Fiio E18 dac+amp. Since I'm thinking to grab a pair of the Sennheiser HD650 sometime later this year, I suppose I'm gonna need something to power the 300ohms headphone so am currently looking at something at about $400 price range. At present after some googling I'm narrowing it down between these two and the Nuforce Icon HDP. But I wonder if they are substantially higher quality sound wise than the Fiio products for their retail prices.
 
You sure you want to use a portable with the HD650? For the sameless coin, you can get a desktop set like the Schiit Modi + Vali, or Modi + Asgard 2, and the handsome combo should deliver great sound.
 
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