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RME ADI-2 DAC Thread

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  1. bryceu
    Hey thanks for sharing this EQ list.

    I gave up EQing a while back as I didn't find it neccesary and enjoyed the flavor my various headphones brought. However I thought I'd give it a go again for fun.

    I'm listening to my Andromedas out of the ADI-2 DAC Phones Out with the Harmon 2017 EQ presets applied through Equalizer APO... Finding it very enjoyable. The EQ adds nice sub-bass boost and cuts out some unnecessary warmth, also adds more sharpness/accuracy to the stage and added smoothness in the highs.

    Darthpool likes this.
  2. Nostoi
    Has anyone used the ADI-2 with the Rupert Neve Headphone Amp? I'm curious to try it, but would like to know how much it brings to the picture. Thanks.
  3. betula
    I am about to recommend a system around £1000 for someone. Even though I have never heard the RME-ADI2, I read a lot of good things about it and it is probably well worth the money for what it is. It would not be connected to an amp, only used as a standalone unit for headphone listening.
    I am very much into Chord sound at all price range, to me the holographic space and the natural sound Chord DACs produce is unique. I prefer the Mojo to the iDSD BL, and my best DAC of choice around £1000 was my Qutest.
    I read the thread and read reviews, so it seems the RME-ADI2 is pretty much on Hugo2's level with a slight preference here or there. I find that pretty impressive.
    I was going to suggest a secondhand Hugo2 to my friend or a secondhand Qutest with a relatively good amp around £4-500, but this RME-ADI2 keeps coming up as a standalone unit. Transparency, resolution and neutrality is the aim.
    On another note, has anyone heard both the ADI2 and the Chord TT2? I know, it is not a fair comparison, but I'd be interested to hear how much the SQ loss is compared to a TOTL product like the TT2.
    Any thoughts or input is welcome. Thanks.
    Docharsha89 likes this.
  4. OctavianH
    Question: Is it possible to use the ADI-2 DAC with both balanced / unbalanced outputs and just select which one to be active? For example to link a headphone amp to the balanced ones and some active PC speakers to the unbalanced? And then just switch between them? Anyone tried this scenario? Thanks!
  5. Quinto
    Boy..the ADI-2 beats my Audio-GD NOS11 on my new Harbeth SHL5+ 40th speakers.. The Audio GD is still great with my HD800S..(used them on adi2-V280 combi which was great though not very musical)
  6. Quinto
    just switch m8..
  7. Docharsha89
    I bought a Hugo 2 recently. I had the RME ADI-2 DAC, which I sold a month ago. Got the Hugo 2 and never looked back. In my humble opinion, the RME isn't even close to what the Hugo 2 can do. I mean, yes, RME is transparent, clean, extends well at both ends and has a wide variety of connection options, So it's a versatile unit. But speaking of Sound quality alone, I would rate it about 7/10, whereas the Hugo 2 is an easy 9.5/10. If you are used to transparent, a bit analytical sounding equipment before, you'll feel right at home with the RME. I had a Mojo before the RME, I too fell in love with the CHORD sound, and couldn't live with any other device.
    Quinto, Tennessee and betula like this.
  8. betula
    That was my gut feeling regardless the several comments on preferring the ADI2 to H2 in this thread... Sure the ADI2 is a very versatile DAC with all the EQ options, but for someone who is looking for simplicity and pure sq without the intention of EQ-ing, H2 might be the better choice then. I just needed some confirmation.
  9. mixman
    Not discounting your opinion, but I have heard from several others including this review, that states the SQ is more of a swap. I believe there are some former Hugo 2 owners that were on this thread. For me no doubt if I leave the RME I will go all the way to a TT2 or similar performance, I think the Hugo or Qutest would just be a trade off.
  10. betula
    Perhaps not a trade off but a side grade depending on preference?
    I know a lot of folks prefer the iFi iDSD BL to the Mojo, because the BL has a thicker bass and a more entertaining sound. The Mojo however at least to my ears has more soundstage depth (3D) and a more realistic sound. So my preference is Mojo.
    I have got a feeling my preference would be the same with the ADI2 vs H2, but I haven't heard the ADI2 so I can't be sure.
    And I am also interested in hearing comments on ADI2 vs TT2.
    Cat Music likes this.
  11. mixman
    Yeah for me the Mojo vs IFI BL was the opposite, The thought the BL was more realistic in that the Mojo was way too warm nor does it have close to the dynamics of the BL. I would only buy a Mojo if i needed something capable and tiny for portable use.

    I do suspect the TT2 is a lot more capable, but it may not be everyone's sound since some prefer more of an R2R DAC type of sound.
    Cat Music likes this.
  12. Quinto
    My ADI didn't sound that great the first say 100 or more hours..it had a slight shimmer, they sound clearer now.great definition
    Cat Music likes this.
  13. blockchainhero
    Hmm, given that DACs have the explicit goal of reproducing the signal as “true-to-source” as possible, it follows that competently engineered DACs will all sound alike. Objective measurements of the RME show it’s audibly transparent so I’m of the opinion that any improvements are likely due to “price placebo”.
    frogmeat69 and Cat Music like this.
  14. betula
    Strange, to me the BL sounded a bit 'cinema sound system-like'. Mojo had more natural voices and instruments, although it sounded a bit thinner.
    TT2 is all about space, insight, transparency and ultimate realism. R2R is not my cup of tea.
    Docharsha89 and Cat Music like this.
  15. Anaz
    I haven't heard a H2, but my ranking of the following, as DACs, is: Qutest > ADI-2 > Mojo. Price being equal, and if the H2 sounds like the Qutest, I would get it over the ADI-2.

    If you want a lower cost option, I'd recommend a Mojo and ARCAM rHead amp which IMO have amazing synergy.
    Cat Music likes this.
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