The Official Sony TA-ZH1ES Hi-Res Headphone Amplifier (Live From IFA 2016)
Sep 1, 2016 at 7:18 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 4,401

thatonenoob

Reviewer: PMR Audio
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The Sony TA-ZH1ES Hi-Res Headphone Amplifier
A Brand New
 
 
A Table of Contents

1. Design/ Philosophy Notes (Directly Below)​
2. Transcription of Technical Interview (Internal Link)​
3. General Impressions By This Author (Coming)​
4. General Impressions by Other Members (Coming)​
5. Event and Release Videos (Internal Link)​

 
 
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Links To Related Thread

MDR-Z1R ​
| ​

An Introduction From The Ground ​
 
Hello all!  It’s thatonenoob here, A little while back, the Sony Singapore Team reached out to me, saying that they had a rather interesting proposition.  I figured that it was probably going to be something along the lines of a new product release, and was naturally quite curious.  A couple of calls and a few emails later, and I found myself booked for a flight to the 2016 IFA in Berlin.   As it is now slightly past 1:15 PM here in Berlin on September 1st, I’m finally able to discuss in an official capacity the immensely exciting new Sony Hi-Res lineup. I know there’s already been some “info” that has arrived beforehand from a Chinese (?) source, but by nature of things I won’t be commenting on that channel.  Rest assured though, everything you see here is official, so speculation begone!   
 
Currently, the atmosphere here at the press conference is hectic and filled with a great deal of excitement, and in the coming hours I will be posting all my impressions, photos, and videos right here in this thread.  In short, I will be bringing the Sony experience directly to y’all Head-Fi’ers.  Stay tuned.  Also, if you have questions, just let me know below, and if it can't already be answered I will try my best to make sure they do.
 
ETA to Next Update
 
I'll be rolling in updates as we go along.  I will eventually be posting the bulk of the the photos and videos in the coming day, and will be updating the threads as soon as I can.  Also, if you have questions, just let me know below, and if it can't already be answered I will try my best to make sure they do.
 
USD Prices (Projected For Asia)​
 
WM1Z - 3199
WM1A - 1199
ZH1ES - 2199
Z1R - 2199
1000X - 399
 
Specifications

Model Name
TA-ZH1ES Hi-Res Audio Headphone Amplifier
Hi-Res Audio
Yes
Power Output(32Ω, 1kHz, 1% Distortion)
Balanced Connection: 1200mW + 1200mW
Unbalanced Connection: 300mW + 300mW
Output Impedance
8-600Ω
Frequency Characteristics
4-80,000Hz(-3dB)
Gain Switch
Yes (High/Low)
Headphone Jack
Balanced standard (4.4 mm in diameter), 3-pole mini (balanced connection, 3.5 mm in diameter) × 2, XLR4 (balanced 4-pin), Standard (6.3 mm in diameter), Stereo mini (3.5 mm in diameter)
Audio Inputs
Walkman®/Xperia input, USB-B input, Coaxial input, Optical input, Line Input
Supported Sampling Frequencies/Bit
PCM: Up to 768kHz /32bit
DSD: Up to 22.4 MHz
Sound Enhancements
DSEE HX™, DSD Remastering Engine, DC Phase Linearizer, LR Balance Adjust
Dimensions (WxHxD)
Approx. 210 x 65 x 314mm
Weight
Approx. 4,400g
 

Design/ Philosophy

 
Key Features
There's several key aspects of the DAP:
  1. DA Hybrid Amplifier Circuit w/ enhanced S-Master HX Technology
  2. Advanced signal processing technology through further development of DSEE HX and DSD Remastering Engine 
  3. Vibration Reduced Chassis
  4. 4.4 mm Balanced Connection

 
 
Sep 1, 2016 at 7:23 AM Post #2 of 4,401

thatonenoob

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Technical Interview

Our extremely interesting technical interview with the Sony Engineers.  It's got quite a bit of everything, and I've more or less kept track of the conversation via a numbered list of captions.  We had some issues with the translation, and I think I will elaborate more.  Some of the initial concern was that the press info was not as technical as some may have liked. We also didn't have a technical ready translator on hand (i.e. engineer trained etc.) Last, it was rapid fire style as we did not have all that much time. To me, it was still informative, and despite not being too smooth something I'd still like to share.
 
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Sep 1, 2016 at 7:43 AM Post #3 of 4,401

thatonenoob

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Member Impressions/ Reviews

Here I will try to compile impressions/ reviews from members as well as external sources.  Feel free to just drop me a PM if you would like to be linked to in this section.  I sometimes have difficulty keeping up with all the thread posts.  Thanks!
 
  1. Phileweb Review by 
    Tadashi Yamanouchi​
     (in Japanese)
  2. Official Sony Japan Interview with Tsunoda, Inayama, and Sato (sorry, this is what I got from Gtranslate)
 
Event and Release Videos

The Official Sony Press Video for the TA-ZH1ES.​
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Sep 1, 2016 at 12:53 PM Post #7 of 4,401

AxelCloris

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I am very interested in this system and unfortunately it looks like all of the discussion is over the new DAPs and closed headphone. I've been looking for a system that uses the 4.4mm connector Sony announced at RMAF two years ago and it's finally here. Huzzah!
 
Sep 1, 2016 at 6:44 PM Post #12 of 4,401

XERO1

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Sep 1, 2016 at 6:47 PM Post #14 of 4,401

XERO1

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