S.M.S.L M2 DAC First Impressions
Oct 7, 2014 at 11:55 AM Post #33 of 154

coqk065

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There must be two different S.M.S.L M2...
 
Based on my review of the S.M.S.L M2, a friend of mine just got his, and he likes it (no noise, no excessive base).
 
He wanted something small, cheap and replace his on-board soundcard on his notebook/work pc.
 
I'm not a S.M.S.L fan boy, but it's good for what it does for the price.
 
Oct 8, 2014 at 10:37 AM Post #34 of 154

Aerathion

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just got it in, no noise.
 
could be just my brain but first thing i noticed was the bass improved, and the amp is actually quite powerful.
 
anyways, just my 2 cents.
 
i think for 60 euro its hard to beat, cant compare to e10k, havent heard it.
but tbh, i think sometimes the difference between dacs/amps are highly overhyped.
 
Oct 8, 2014 at 11:29 AM Post #35 of 154

limcc

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After a week, the amp did improve a little, but still not much improvement over the onboard cheap PHY, probably only on par.

One thing for sure. the CAL!2 sound awful on SMSL M2, but good with onboard. the CAL! is much better, perform equally good on both. for anyone wanting the CAL!, I would say get the cheaper first version, its more comfortable and sound more balanced--compare to 2nd version. I guess InnerFidelity is right about the 2 version.

I used to think CAL!2 is an improvement over CAL!1, but after a month of listening, I came to appreciate CAL!, the 2 had too much V shape. good for pop and hip-pop, tiring for everything else.

Guess I either have to upgrade the HP or the amp to find some improvement over my current setup. seems this SMSL model is less popular than their other product, even the sabre DAC doesn't help it
 
Oct 8, 2014 at 1:41 PM Post #36 of 154

ZeosPantera

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I do like the smsl brand as they seem to care about the end result and haven't sold any duds so far. Always try and find something better. The E10K was really a bit of a disappointment but I have so much higher end gear I am comparing it to that THAT may have bias'd me more. My desk here has an Odac and I recently upgraded from the SMSL sApii to the FiiO E09K because.. That thing sounded notably different and better than the sapii with less noise. So all I could compare the E10k to was my original E10 (which I used for nearly a year) and the SMSL M2 which I used for only a month and abused and absolutely enjoyed on a bunch of my headphones.
 
I don't deny the E10k is way more powerful than the M2 but the tone of the M2 is just warmer and with more separation. I found the E10K sterile and narrow which is why I made my preference known for the M2. I don't do bass heavy cans which may be why I like them M2 or didn't take note to any bloated bass. I also do use/advise a slight bump in low end when "on the go" and that M2 is indeed designed for that purpose.
 
Oct 8, 2014 at 1:55 PM Post #37 of 154

Aerathion

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  I do like the smsl brand as they seem to care about the end result and haven't sold any duds so far. Always try and find something better. The E10K was really a bit of a disappointment but I have so much higher end gear I am comparing it to that THAT may have bias'd me more. My desk here has an Odac and I recently upgraded from the SMSL sApii to the FiiO E09K because.. That thing sounded notably different and better than the sapii with less noise. So all I could compare the E10k to was my original E10 (which I used for nearly a year) and the SMSL M2 which I used for only a month and abused and absolutely enjoyed on a bunch of my headphones.
 
I don't deny the E10k is way more powerful than the M2 but the tone of the M2 is just warmer and with more separation. I found the E10K sterile and narrow which is why I made my preference known for the M2. I don't do bass heavy cans which may be why I like them M2 or didn't take note to any bloated bass. I also do use/advise a slight bump in low end when "on the go" and that M2 is indeed designed for that purpose.

Hi, your first head fi post? Welcome!
 
I just got the m2 in today(came from a xonar phoebus soundcard), and really enjoy the sound, I can't really tell the difference on my headphones, but the bass is alot tighter on my speakers.
 
I think the difference between dacs is pretty hard to tell to be completely honest, there is alot of snake oil in audio, just my opinion ofcourse.
 
My m2 is completely quiet by the way. also the m2 has <1 ohm output impedance so I dont think there would be alot of bass bloat.
 
 
But the convenience of having both my speakers and headphones powered at the same time is just godlike really.
 
Oct 8, 2014 at 2:04 PM Post #38 of 154

ZeosPantera

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I can hear the difference in dacs but USUALLY only in headphones. I put whatever line out is on said dac into my O2 and do some painfully slow switching back and forth. Eventually I may work out a system to directly A-B dacs but it will likely take two computers or some special software that can swap devices and restart tracks.
 
Oct 8, 2014 at 2:07 PM Post #39 of 154

Aerathion

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  I can hear the difference in dacs but USUALLY only in headphones. I put whatever line out is on said dac into my O2 and do some painfully slow switching back and forth. Eventually I may work out a system to directly A-B dacs but it will likely take two computers or some special software that can swap devices and restart tracks.

yea its really hard to hear the difference when you have to manually switch between dacs
 
Oct 8, 2014 at 2:15 PM Post #40 of 154

Aerathion

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by the way, i dont know why you would ever need something to be more powerfull than the m2, it drives them so insanely loud, it almost turns my headphones into bookshelf speakers lol.
 
Oct 22, 2014 at 3:25 PM Post #41 of 154

pilsnerpopper

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Has anyone actually got this to work with their phone?  I am able to get my FiiO E07K to work with my old Galaxy Note 2, but not with the m2.  Any reason usb audio would work with the FiiO but not the m2?  Just wondering if anybody else got this working.  Thanks!
 
Oct 22, 2014 at 3:52 PM Post #42 of 154

Aerathion

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  Has anyone actually got this to work with their phone?  I am able to get my FiiO E07K to work with my old Galaxy Note 2, but not with the m2.  Any reason usb audio would work with the FiiO but not the m2?  Just wondering if anybody else got this working.  Thanks!

im pretty sure it will not work, unless you install a special app, which i believe is called USB DAC, or something.
 
Oct 22, 2014 at 4:57 PM Post #43 of 154

pilsnerpopper

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  im pretty sure it will not work, unless you install a special app, which i believe is called USB DAC, or something.

 
Thanks for the reply.  The phone is rooted which did allow the usb audio out for the FiiO.  Not sure why it would work via usb for the FiiO and not the M2; works great with the pc though.  Was planning on using this as mobile dac though.
 
Oct 22, 2014 at 5:16 PM Post #44 of 154

lawrecedent

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Thanks for the reply.  The phone is rooted which did allow the usb audio out for the FiiO.  Not sure why it would work via usb for the FiiO and not the M2; works great with the pc though.  Was planning on using this as mobile dac though.

Could it be something to do with the fact that it has no internal power source and is powered by the usb which a pc does but phones do not? Just an idea?
 
Oct 22, 2014 at 7:35 PM Post #45 of 154

pilsnerpopper

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Could it be something to do with the fact that it has no internal power source and is powered by the usb which a pc does but phones do not? Just an idea?

That does make sense. The red leds are illuminating, but this still could be the issue. A lot of people stating "it should" work with a phone but no confirmations so just wanted to check. Not working here despite other powered dacs working.
 

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