Sony PHA-3 balanced portable dac/amp

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by sabermobile, Sep 3, 2014.
  1. arftech
    Have you thought about getting a Sony Z2 or Z3 phone? You would have to make sure KitKat is running on it though. A cool benefit of the phone is the added option of streaming Tidal HiFi or Spotify especially if you’re into something like that. Anyway, I understand the Z 2-3 are cool transports and will work with the PHA-3 as I’m waiting for my Z2 to come from Hong Kong which was less than $140 US new.

    I am running an iPod Touch and laptop to my PHA-3 but wanted to find an all Sony solution.
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2017
    ruthieandjohn likes this.
  2. dolstein
    I'm a PHA-3 owner and am interested in recommendations as well. Also, is anyone using a PHA-3 with an NW-WM1A? Would there be much of an improvement, or would you be better off running the headphones directly off the NW-WM1A?
  3. Witcher
    Why would you do that? The PHA3 DAC/Amp sounds very much like the WM1A. In fact, with the EQ on the WM1A, it's better than just the PHA3 alone since it's tweakable. I'd stick with the WM1A on it's own.
  4. dolstein
    That was the reason I asked. By the way, if you use the EQ on the WM1A, would the EQ be passed through the digital output to the PHA-3?
  5. Sonyvores
    No it doens't, digital outpout is "pure"
    Witcher likes this.
  6. Witcher
    I assume "directsound" kicks in when it's sent out thru the digital output. But considering how EQ info is sent along with MP3 streaming, I can't be sure. If anything just set it to "directsound" on the player.
  7. AvijitSingh
    If any1 is interested in purchasing a PHA-3 I am selling one the price is negotiable
  8. Audiosonic
    Read the PHA-3 has "an asynchronous USB 2.0 clock that supports highly accurate DA conversions."

    Wonder how effective this is on its own? Cause I'm thinking of buying the iFi Nano iUSB3.0 to clean up and re-clock the data from the computer.
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2017
  9. Hawaiibadboy Contributor
    There was a guy in here who replied to EVERY post about everything and insisted his opinion at EVERY SINGLE turn.
    Made enjoying this on this site miserable.
    I am going to get it again now that he has moved on. loved it!
  10. Witcher
    you're going to get the PHA3 now again because of a forum member? LOL
  11. arftech
    Well, it is an awesome piece of gear!
  12. Krutsch
    I had this configuration at my office (iUSB 3.0 Nano + PHA-3). I removed the iFi and went without and immediately noticed the difference. I was surprised, to be honest. I wanted to move the iUSB 3.0 back to my home system, so I replaced it with an iPurifier 2 - which, frankly, isn't as good. You will like the combination you suggest.
  13. Audiosonic
    Thank you. I'm shopping for my office too.

    A local retailer is offering a seven-day money back refund. Going by past customer experience, they are confident I'll keep it. The next thing to sort out would be the USB cabling.
  14. Zowie1
    Does the sound get even better with the SPDIF-connection instead of the USB? Would the balanced mode work also with the SPDIF-connection? I might be interested in trying this if it's worth it but I would probably need some sort of adapter between my computer and the Pha-3...
  15. Witcher
    Curiously, why would you want a new stack for office? Wouldn't a good DAP suffice?

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