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RME ADI-2 DAC Thread

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  1. oqvist
    Isnt it just the focals sound? I dont have the clear I have the elear but even on my trafomatic audio head One tube amp its soundstage is quite in your your head. HD 800s have superb 3d soundstage with the adi-2 plus THX AAA 789. Just appears right not hollow and has depth.

    Just adi-2 as amp I have not sent much time with but the elear hade similar traits there.
  2. Emmanuel Palmer
    I know the focals are not known for soundstage but at least a dac/amp that can help a little with its weaknesses is not a bad idea. Nb: my impression with the clears and adi2 was without an external amp since that was exactly what he asked for
  3. Tsukuyomi
    Hello fellow RME ADI-2 DAC companions.
    question, am i able to use dual male balanced xlr in the back of the ADI-2 DAC as a headphone cable source?


    basically plug this in the back, and then get a dual female adapter 4.4 to 2.5(or 4.4) and then plug in balanced headphones into that.

    would the sound be compromised because of the adapters and not being direct?
    would it work and power the balanced headphones properly? or is this only for speakers :S would it be too much power?
  4. EDN80
    Reading through the thread and interested in your input since I recently aquired the LCD-MX4 and got rid of my OPPO HA-1 to pair with my SPL PHONITOR 2 amp. Getting a new DAC and hesitating between the RME and the LKS AUDIO MH-DA004, which, they say, probably has the best possible sound @ $1200-$1400. The RME only has a mid-range AK chip, though greatly implemented, compared to dual Sabre ESS flagship chips for the LKS. The RME is also more versatile. How does it pair with the MX4?
  5. CaptainFantastic
    I don't have a wealth of experience with DACs. But I did a fair bit of research and started with the Grace Design m900. I really like the nice, clean sound that allows me to enjoy the impact and superb sound quality of the MX4. I still use this DAC at work. The advice on HeadFi was (but not specific to the MX4), if I remember correctly, that the RME ADI-2 would not improve the SQ, just add features. Well, it turns out that for the MX4 the ADI-2 must be a great pairing, because I heard the improved sound quality immediately.

    Some reviews, while singing its praises otherwise, say that the MX4 has lackluster scaling (https://www.head-fi.org/showcase/audeze-lcd-mx4.23106/reviews). Maybe staying with a mid-range chip but really well implemented is the sweet spot? Just a theory. I haven't tried DACs with high-range chips as you describe the LKS to be. If you get a chance to try both, I would like to hear your conclusions.

    In any case, MX4 with ADI-2 is an unbelievable experience for me.
    cardeli22 and EDN80 like this.
  6. tlrobinson
    No, those outputs are not amplified, they are for outputting line level signal to another amplifier.
    Tsukuyomi likes this.
  7. EDN80
    I'm glad that you're liking the combo. The price alone for all that it does, makes it quite an attractive proposition. Reviews are stellar across the board and it's easy to find pretty much everywhere, from Amazon to B&H and other authorized dealer. Since my SPL Phonitor 2 is German too and aimed at the pro, rather than audiophile market, these two could make quite a nifty combo.

    I did hear that the MX4 doesn't scale as well as others, I do find that it isn't so, at least now that I'm feeding it only through a Nuforce Icon HDP while I look for a new DAC. Obviously not as resolving as my previous HA-1/Phonitor 2 combo. So, who knows? That's why I'm leaning more towards the LKS as of now, because those dual SABRE ES9038PROs sound superb from all the reviews I read. Aprroaching Dave! Plus, it's not bad to look at...
    CaptainFantastic likes this.
  8. technobear
    Balanced line outs done to pro audio standards will drive a 600 ohm load (but no less) so you could use a beyerdynamic T1 that way.
  9. Tsukuyomi
    Thanks for the info :)
  10. tekkster
    I tested the Clear on the ADI-2 and it sounded pretty good. I changed the filter to SD Slow and futzed with the equalizer and while the sound stage did not improve (very hard to do with Focal headphones), the sound was far better than too flat and boring.

    There are some neutrality tendencies with both the ADI-2 and the Clear, so on a flat eq, I agree that the Clear doesn't really shine in this setup.
  11. Arniesb
    Its always the case with cheap built in amps... Many dac/amps i tried have bad amps... Cheap op amps, Cheap caps in a signal path, underenginered power supply etc. I dont think dac is the problem... Just try better amp.
    My Violectric V280 blow away Topping Dx 7 dac/amp. Dac isnt bad at all though.
  12. Phoniac
    Fortunately none of what you list relates to the ADI-2 DAC. Expensive op amps - check. No cap in signal path - check. Oversized power supply - check.

    Then get yourself the one from this thread's title, might change your view..

    Output impedance 10 Ohms unbalanced, 20 Ohms balanced - not astonished...
  13. Arniesb
    Lol i tried pro version... Nothing impressive. Single ended sound worse than topping dx7 balanced. Dac is good, amp is very average... balaced is not bad thou Beyerdynamic a20 is better too than single ended aka adi 2. Good amp with switched power supply with few hundred bucks parts never gonna happen...
  14. Phoniac
    Yeah, sure. Now that your objective arguments are gone it's back to subjective audiophoolism...
    VintageFlanker and cardeli22 like this.
  15. Arniesb
    What i liked dac... Even as a dac its worth it easily, just saying amp is nothing impressive. i might even buy 1 cause dac is great, even better than 2qute i tried few times. If youre try better amps you will see.
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