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Nice clean setup!
Not bad at all.
I think i got a few millimeters narrower with my setup, but i went a little nuts
I've been digging around trying to find the right DAC for use with my Macbook Air, Nexus 6/9, iPad and iPhone. A built in battery is essential as is fairly easy compatibility with a variety of platforms/devices, is portable, and to be quite honest is the least expensive. Full 384 kHz processing would be nice as well...
As far as I can tell, the Oppo HA2 seems to be the best bang for the buck given those parameters - there are other options including some less expensive ones that either don't have an onboard battery, or are limited to 96khz ... have I missed anything I should be looking at as well that is comparable to the feature set of the Oppo HA2 in the same price range (or less)?
Is 384khz processing that critical? I would like to use it with MQA files on the Macbook which range depending on the artist/album but may be above 96... may or may not be able to hear the difference I suppose but it's nice to think you're getting the full output available.
While I own the HA-2 and find it's feature set and sound quality to be great value, a friend has the new iFi iDSD nano LE, which is a slightly stripped back version of their regular nano.
The LE version lacks the switchable digital filters, RCA/coax digital output, and has a slightly smaller battery than the standard nano, but knocks off $60 on the asking price to $129. Even the standard nano at $189 is a great deal, another friend in San Diego has one and it's a great sounding piece.
The friend that just picked up that newer nano LE loves it, using it with a Note 2 on the go with the UAPP app, and at home connected to a Raspberry Pi3 running the excellent Moode Player Linux distro.
At $129 you can't go wrong with the nano LE, or if the switchable digital filters and RCA coax output are important useful features, the standard nano at $189 also represents value.
You also can't go wrong with the HA-2 at $299, I've been very pleased with mine.
Thanks for the reply and pointing out the iFi Nano - I don't have a home audio component that accepts digital input anyway (vintage Nakamichi TA-2A receiver) so if used with my home audio setup the RCA jacks are actually rather helpful. And at roughly half the cost I think this may be the place to start!
First, I want to say that I really appreciate you doing the testing.
I love my HA-2, pairs really well with my K7XX. However, this iPhone issue is pretty annoying. How did your experiment with the aluminium foil work out? Do you think wrapping the cable itself could be a possible solution? Unfortunately, I don't have the amp here, or I would do some experimenting.
It didn't work. Actually made it worse. Can try isolating the cable tomorrow, but don't think that will do a difference.
I've put it up for sale for now.
The only caveat for mobile use as compared to the HA-2 is the nano lacks an MFi (Made For iOS) input.
That means if you use iPhone or iPad for mobile, you'd also need an Apple Camera Connection Kit (CCK) to make it work with the nano LE, an added cost (however small).
Both of my friends use Android phones and thus only needed a common OTG cable for connection to the nano, whereas iOS devices demand the actual CCK for them to work with a DAC, unless that DAC has a special MFi input like the HA-2 does.
Wrote Oppo support. They blame the cable. Which would be interesting if it was true, since I've tried four different cables, along with the large number of cables that have been tried by all the users with the same problem. It would also be an interesting phenomena if the cable was automatically repaired by turning on airplane mode..
Told them to check this thread, especially @dennistdk's posts with the experiments, and asked them to have their engineers try to reproduce the problem. If they can't, it would be very interesting to know what magic cable they are using, and where I can get it..
Edit: just got a reply - the support rep said he had forwarded my mail to their engineers. I see this as a good opportunity to see if Oppo is a company that take their customers seriously. I've pondered buying some Oppo headphones, this will definitely affect whether I will or not.
As an owner of many Oppo products, I can assure you that if any company will take care of their customers, it's them. There customer, after purchase support is second to none-/world class. I'm sure your issues will be resolved to your satisfaction.
Yeah, I guess I just have a general skepticism towards CS...
It also seems that other people have contacted Oppo about this issue earlier, but they still blamed the cable.
Anyway, I hope you're right. I love my HA-2, would be awesome if this problem could get resolved.
Just an update. Even without the USB cable it reboots when stacked in an area with low coverage. I can easily here the audible clicks of the HA2SE turning on and off on my sensitive IEMS.
Only thing that works is keeping the phone 10-15 cm away from the HA2(se)
So it's 100% not the cable, but a shielding issue that makes it reboot quite often. It happens each time the GSM like noise is picked up by the amp.
If the HA2's dropouts are related to its proximity to the phone, could it be fixed by putting it in a "faraday bag" or covering it with tape designed to block the cell signal?
Do you know at all if the oppo Ha-2 SE would be wasted on my sennheiser HD598's?
I got to demo the oppo at my local audio store but the music was from a lossy streaming service and i couldnt detect a significant increase in sound quality, is it my untrained ears, headphones or the music source, although putting on a pair of Audeze LCD2 i found the music did have more "air" about it.
A lossy streaming service is wholly inadequate to judge the HA-2's sound quality driving the HD598 which I own. Actually a lossy streaming service doesn't cut it under most circumstances and with just about any amp or headphone. Good for convenience, but little else.
Use a proper source, maybe an Android phone/tablet running the UAPP or HF Player app, an iPhone/iPad running HF Player, or a laptop running JRiver or Foobar2000.