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Shanling M0 - Nano size, touch screen, LDAC & aptX BT, USB DAC/transport and ESS Sabre ES9218P, FW 3.2

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by Shanling, Mar 16, 2018.
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  1. originalsnuffy
    I think perhaps I am a bit confused. I am not asking whether the unit can output DSD to external DACs such as the Chord Mojo.

    I am wondering if the M0 can natively process DSD for playback on the unit. I though it could do that unlike the M1, but now I am not entirely sure. Can you elaborate?

    If it can't do that now, will it be able to do so in the future? Most of the time I play FLAC on the unit, but DSD would be nice. Otherwise I will not use up the extra space on the device for DSD files.
  2. endgame4
    Search for DSD in this thread. A couple of pages ago it was explained that M0 could do native transport but with issues so it was removed from the software before release. It might return with a future firmware upgrade.
  3. csglinux
    Nice review @TheoS53 :) Good observation about the use of space in the UI. I'm quite used to the M0 and seem to be able to navigate without any issues (I have a ~256 Gb library), but I agree there might be better uses of screen real estate. Maybe Shanling can look into that for a future update? One thing I've found really important to avoid is file/track names like: "The Alan Parsons Project Greatest Hits Album 27, Track 1: etc., etc., etc.". Because that takes an awful lot of left-swiping :wink:

    About the "brightness" of the M0... I'm going to go out on a limb here and be a lone voice crying in the darkness and exposing my obvious ignorance and hearing-loss problems. I don't think the M0 is bright. Nothing in my listening tests or measurements indicates there's any rise at all in amplitude with increasing frequency. What I have noticed, is some other players can have a bit of a bump in the low-end with certain headphones. I've seen this with output impedances not much more than 1 Ohm. I'm not entirely sure how to explain it, because I've seen this even where the rule of 8 doesn't apply, but I don't see/hear these artefacts with higher spec'd pieces of kit like the ADI-2 Pro or Hugo 2. I believe the differences lie in other players bumping up the low end, rather than M0 being "bright". THD+N could be a valid point of criticism, but that's a story for another day. I just want to plant a flag here to note that there is one person on headfi (me) who doesn't think the M0 is bright.
  4. rkt31
    Dsd is encoded into pcm by players in real time but some softwares allow to save the dsd encoded pcm stream as FLAC of 24bit 176.4. this FLAC can be played in any dap which does not support on the fly dop encoding and it is recognised by the external dac just like any dop stream . Before fiio X3 mk2 was updated to support on the fly dop, I converted dsd into dop encoded FLAC and fiio X3 mk2 played it just like any FLAC and external dac recognised the stream as dsd .
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2018
  5. TheoS53
    Thanks for the kind words.

    Regarding the brightness...as you and I discussed the possible effects of harmonic distortion on the sound character, that might be something at play here, but I can't say that with any certainty. When I say that it sounds bright, I mean that strictly in the sense of when I compare it to something like the Micro iDSD Black Label or even the M2s. It may or may not be "bright" in absolute terms, but it does seem brighter to me at least with references to the aforementioned devices. But as I always say, these "warm" and "bright" differences between DAPs is in reality so small, and you usually have to really concentrate on listening to the equipment before these characteristics are "revealed".
  6. crabdog
    Interesting thoughts about the M0's brightness. It does not seem bright to me at all but it does have an insane amount of transparency and detail compared to the Burr Brown sound I'm used to from the AR-M20.
  7. rkt31
    I use hd650 with mojo using Android as transport with uapp. One day mojo discharged and I directly plugged hd650 into m0. M0 did not suffer from volume limitations much but it sounded lot 'slower' as conpcomp to mojo which sounded lot more punchy, cleaner and open etc etc. M0 obviously is not in the league of mojo but very good listen with mid to lower impedance sensitive headphones say upto 150 ohm. I am using m0 as transport to Hugo 2 with l2 cable and few ferrites but I found sbdroan busing uapp to be better sounding as tgrsnstra. That's why I asked whether m0 is bit perfect or not. Also my dsd dop encoded FLAC did sttuter with mojo which should not have been the case of m0 is outputting without any messing with pcm stream.
  8. csglinux
    I'm trying to drill down on this a bit more. More measurements will soon be coming your way via pm :) I'm not very familiar with the iDSD Black Label, but there are some odd comments in the specs about nominal z-out <240 Ohm, but headamp section <1Ω (iEMatch not engaged). I own an iEMatch, and it's an odd beast - it does change the FR. I wonder if the iDSD has some kind of iEMatch circuitry built in? BTW, the M2s has a fairly high z-out (~4.8 Ohm, I believe) which could certainly skew things.
  9. TheoS53
    Yes, the black label has IEMatch built in, off, high (4-ohm), ultra (1-ohm). the <240-ohm you referenced is probably the RCA lineout. Yup, the z-out can change the FR of headphones (especially in the case of something like the Andromeda), which is why I specifically opt to use headphones/iems that experience practically no change in their FR with increasing z-out
  10. technobear
    Nothing odd about it. The DAC section (Line Out) has impedance <240 ohms. The headphone output has impedance <1 ohm. No mystery there.
    TheoS53 likes this.
  11. fish1050
    No then I will have to constantly be on the lookout for the JAS lawyers trying to come after me. I don't think I could handle the pressure. Wait is it cactuses or cacti I always get that one mixed up? :)
  12. abitdeef
    M2s definitely sounded warmer than M0 to me. I wouldn’t call the M0 neutral but it’s got more clarity than M2s and AK70, it’s either got more detailed extended treble or leaner bass or both.
  13. fish1050
    If it came with 4 stickers does that mean it is 4X HiRes? Would that mean it can play files up to 160 Khz? Now that would be impressive. :ksc75smile:
  14. originalsnuffy
    With all due respect, I want to hear from Shaling exactly what the situation is. There is output to DAC, and there is native playing. I am interested in native playing and I am not convinced we are all talking about the same thing. DOP implies output to an external DAC for example.

    If it really can't decode DSD natively, I am a bit unhappy as that was definitely an advertised feature and a reason why I sold the M1 and bought the M0.

    But like I said, I want to hear directly from Shanling what the situation is now and what it might be in the future.
  15. abitdeef
    I think Cayin had an abundance of hi res stickers at that time ha ha- we’ll get rid of these things one way or another they were probably thinking.
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