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OPPO HA-2 Portable Headphone Amplifier/DAC Discussion Thread

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  1. anticute

    Try, if you have the opportunity!
  2. ReaperZzZ
    Hey all, im using an HA-2 , and will be purchasing a phone with USB-C on it shortly, are there any current USB-C users who can advise the best cable solution ?
    I did a bit of hunting on ebay, and found the following .. This should be okay right?
    Currently I have a right angle cable, this one
    I saw someone earlier in the thread mention this
    Alternatively, is there a better quality cable solution I could go with?
  3. ryanjsoo
    I've been using that usb-c to micro-b cable with my HTC 10 and HA-2, it works perfectly and I've experienced no issues. It's digital anyway so no cable will give you any kind of quality loss. 
  4. DrunkSaru
    Nexus 5X with HA-2 for over a year now. As long as it supports OTG, cable or adapter, all should be well. Like yourself, I was curious but instead of asking people on the forum, I just bought like 10 different kinds of cables to test myself and all have worked the same. My main concern was not about the quality of the cable in terms of sound (since it's all digital, usually won't make a difference) but rather quality of build (cable wire). I needed something that bends easily and designed to bend without breaking as easily. All the short cables really didn't work out for me at the end so I went with a longer 6 inch - 8 inch cable. But that was for my specific setup. But yeah, cable doesn't matter (at least for me) as long as it supports OTG. 
    Now with my N5X, when connecting, my phone ends up charging the HA2 and there is no way around it. Tested with my friend's 6P with same results. I see alot of others with the same phone saying the same thing. I think it was the Nougat update that gave the phone the ability to charge other devices and that screwed me and many others over. Haven't found a solution yet. It seems whenever you connect an OTG cable, regardless of if the other end is connected to something, the phone starts to try to give power to the potential other device. So if your new phone does do this, make sure to keep an extra battery to recharge your phone. My N5X dies after about 5 hours of constant listening. 
    I think when testing with the Pixel, I didn't have this issue but I don't remember if it was an OTG cable or not. I basically gave up and now carry around an extra battery with me at all times. 
  5. jegnyc
    Just rode the New York City subways with my iPhone 6s (iOS 10.2) and Oppo HA-2. They were connected by a generic 4" cable and were flat side by side in my pocket. I listened to iTunes without any interference that I could detect.

    Since the beginning of the year, NYC subway stations have had WiFi and cell service, but on several instance when I checked I was down to 1 bar.
  6. ReaperZzZ
    Perfect, thanks! I should have mentioned in terms of quality I was referring to build quality rather than audio, oops :)
     Ouch! That would drive me NUTS. I'm looking at buy the new Samsung S8+ in a months time .. if I have this kind of issue I'll have to re-evaluate some things .. I don't really want to have to carry a portable charging brick with me everywhere
  7. adeeb
    Thise of you having problems with iPhone & HA-SE2, please reply indicating the following combination that you used when experiencing the problems:

    - iPhone model
    - iOS version
    - which music player app you used (iTunes, HF Player, Spotify, Tidal, etc)
    - whether audio files were standard or hi-res
    - whether files were locally stored on the iPhone or streamed
    - were you in motion/commuting/traveling
    - did you have airplane mode enabled
    - were you using the standard angled short cable
    - which country/city are you in (might impact GSM/CDMA band)

    it might help us all if someone creates a google sheet with all these fields and shares it here so that we can all fill in our individual combos and experiences. then we can share that with OPPO and hopefully expedite diagnosis and resolution.
  8. anticute
    iPhone 6, iOS 10.x, Spotify high qual (mainly, also streamed some radio etc), whenever I am travelling through low coverage areas or when I move to places in my home where the coverage is spotty, tried four cables.
    Available frequencies are GSM 900 and 1800, UMTS 900 and 2100 and LTE B3, B7 and B20.
    FWIW, Oppo already has this info from me, don't know how much information they got from the other users who reported the same issue to them.
  9. jegnyc
    As per my post, I didn't have the problem, but here are my answers as a control.
    iPhone 6s
    iOS 10.2
    256 kbps
    Commuting on NYC subway (and walking several blocks)
    Airplane mode not enabled
    Using generic 4" cable (bought at the local drugstore).  I will say the cable I used is considerably thicker and stiffer than the one that comes with the Oppo.
    NYC (AT&T service)
  10. athani
    Would the HA2 be a good choice to power the Audeze LCD 3f off of my iPhone 6s?
  11. anticute

    I don't know how they match with the LCD 3, but I wouldn't recommend it if you're planning on using it with iPhone. If/when Oppo manages to sort out all the issues with iPhone it's another story, but until then I would stay clear and look at other options.
    athani likes this.
  12. grimlock525
    Hello, this is my first time posting on Head-Fi.  This post is lengthy, so if you want to just see some gadget porn scroll to the link at the end (I understand).
    I consider myself to be a casual audiophile.  Over the last 7 years I have taken public transit (train & light rail) to and from work, at least 3 hours round trip each day (this will be relevant later).  I played classical piano for around 10 years during my childhood, so I've always had an interest in all genres of music.  Given the amount of music that I consume during my time on trains, I've naturally sought better and better portable listening experiences.
    After reading through a slew of reviews both here as well as other online audio sites, I decided to pick up the HA-2SE.  I was aware of the intermittent stop/start issues people were having, but the positive aspects seemed to be worth the risk.  I had switched back to an iPhone in January after being in the Android/Google ecosystem for the last few years, which also made the HA-2SE attractive.  I live in the Bay and Oppo happens to have an office here.  I called them up and imagine my surprise when they told me that not only could I purchase one directly from them, but that they had a demo area where I could try it out first.
    I set aside some time to go and visit them a few days later.  The Oppo office was kind of interesting.  They had some nice demo areas set up for their AV products, but then they also just had some random cubicles set up throughout the floor.  I walked in and told the guy at the front I was interested in the HA-2SE, and he took me back to a random cubicle where they had a demo unit set up, alongside an HA-1, and a set of PM-1 headphones.  Needless to say, I definitely "took my time" trying out all the nice goodies they had set up in there.  I ended walking out with not only the HA-2SE, but a set of their PM-3s as well [​IMG].
    So I get back home and of course rush to hook up the HA-2SE.  My primary audio source is Tidal's "HiFi" quality streaming, which is CD-Quality.  Honestly, I do not possess hearing gifted enough to discern any quality difference from sources that have a higher resolution than CD.  That is not to say it doesn't exist, I just don't believe my hearing is sensitive enough to detect it.  Anyways, I worked my way through a diverse number of tracks on Tidal over the next couple of hours, and was at that point very happy with my purchase decision.
    Over the next few days, I used the HA-2SE during my train commute and I began to experience the random dropouts that others have mentioned.  The symptoms sound identical.  Tidal will pause and then the charge indicator on my iPhone will toggle, which would seem to indicate that the HA-2SE disconnected and re-connected.  I also find a correlation between the frequency of these dropouts and areas along my commute with poor or spotty cell reception.  In fact, it is consistent enough that now I can generally predict where it is likely to occur.  I have never had this issue occur in Airplane Mode, or when I was on WiFi with cellular data disabled, which is also consistent with the theory that this could somehow be related to the cellular radio from the iPhone.  I am hopeful that Oppo's engineers will be able to root cause the issue.  I would be interested to see if this is some general design flaw which affects all units, or whether some units are simply defective and are more susceptible to this.
    I became a bit conflicted about what to do.  On the one hand, when the HA-2SE was working without issues, it was such an enjoyable experience.  On the other hand, when the random disconnects/resets would happen, they were very disruptive.  In the end, I decided that the combination of the sound quality and aesthetic appeal of the HA-2SE was too difficult to give up.  However, I can be an impatient person, and so rather than wait for Oppo to address the issue, I decided that I would try and come up my own solution.
    I started exploring the idea of getting a dedicated DAP to use with the HA-2SE, since using it with my iPhone was no longer viable.  However, another problem existed which was that since most of my listening was done via Tidal, I would need a DAP with either an Android or iOS interface, which further limited my choices.  After jumping through quite a number of candidates, I had it basically narrowed down to either an iPod Touch 128GB or a refurbished Sony Xperia X5 Compact.  And then, a dark horse emerged.  Last week Apple quietly updated the max storage on the iPhone SE to 128GB.  I did some research on the phone and the more I looked the more I realized that this thing could actually be even better suited for the HA-2SE than the iPhone 6/6s & 7.
    Form-factor wise I really like that the SE is shorter, and you can stack it with the bands without having to wrap around the volume knob, an annoying problem I had with the 6s.  In fact, you can stack the two with no obstruction of the screen on the SE, giving you full access.  The height of the SE is basically identical to the height of the leather.  All of your other buttons and toggles are uncovered and easily accessible as well.  Sure you give up a bit of screen real estate, but since the SE is pretty much a glorified Tidal player, I won't generally be checking email or surfing the web on the device.
    Secondly, the design aesthetic of the two complement each other very well.  The iPhone 6 & 7 have rounded edges, whereas the sharp chamfered edges of the SE match the HA-2SE almost perfectly.  Additionally, even the buttons and switches are clearly of the same design language.  Once you see them side by side below it's uncanny how similar they are.  (The question is, who copied who?)
    Now, one downside of the SE is that it has non-expandable storage, but with the introduction of the 128GB model I felt this would be sufficient for building a reasonable offline library of CD-quality files.  Also consider this is 128GB of fast NAND, compared to slower microSD storage.  As a bonus, the back of the SE is completely flat, so it lies flush against the HA-2SE.  On my 6s and the iPod touch, the camera sticks out so the backs of the devices are not fully flush.
    Now, before I continue, let me acknowledge that I am not in any way trying to say that this is a solution that everyone should be seriously looking to adopt.  It just happened to be a solution that addressed or mitigated the greatest issues I've had with the device.  In fact, I know that I probably could've gotten a higher quality portable all-in-on DAP for the total cost of this setup, but in the end I am very pleased with the end result and I look forward to enjoying it on my commute for years to come.
    The only thing left now is to test it on my commute to see how things go.  I plan on either just playing downloaded Tidal tracks, or WiFi tethered to my iPhone 6s.  If I don't experience disconnects, then in my opinion it strengthens the argument that this is related to the existence of a cellular signal.  If it still somehow experience disconnects, then I may have to again reconsider whether to keep the HA-2SE.  I'm really hoping this doesn't happen, because I am looking forward to using this setup.
    Ok, if you read all that and you're still with me, then bravo you are a patient person!  As a reward, I've taken a few pictures of my setup that I hope people will appreciate.  Apparently Head-Fi will not let me post pictures until after 10 posts, so I created an album in Google Photos and have shared the link below.  I do not claim to have any sort of knowledge or expertise in photography [​IMG].
  13. anticute
    Wait, you bought a second iPhone, which will be connected to your first iPhone, mainly to avoid the dropouts? [​IMG]
    I mean, it looks neat and all, but still.. [​IMG] 
  14. frustin
    updated my iphone to 10.3 this weekend. i've had SOOO many drop outs today. the music is still playing, but there's no sound coming out of the headphones. if i unplug the usb or turn off and on the Oppo (and press play again), it works.
    it wasnt doing this last week.
  15. anticute
    Haven't used my Oppo with my iPhone for a while, got too annoyed with the dropouts. However, I tried just now, but before trying it long enough to be able to determine if there are more drops in 10.3 (drops, yes, but there were drops before as well), I noticed that the music sounded much worse than I remember it. First I thought I had blown my headphones, that's the way the bass sounded, rattles and buzzes when it hits deeper notes on higher volume. Then I tried the same music with headphones straight out of the jack, and the rattle disappeared. And if I run the HA2 from my computer it sounds fine as well with the same music.. 

    I really can't remember this happening before.. Could someone try and see if it's the same for them? Is the HA2 becoming even less iPhone compatible? 
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