Updated: HifiMAN HM-801 Portable Music Player Preorder
Oct 12, 2009 at 7:22 AM Post #676 of 1,469

Tidus

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Woody469 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Same here. According to what I've read, the difference without the UK chip is huge. I'd be willing to pay a premium for having it in my rig but I am not so sure I want one without it.



So back to the first page of this thread: We have sent an PCM1704UK order (for second batch) to our suppliers. However, we will not confirm the second batch will be PCM1704UK version until we receive those DAC chips.


So i think that if you preorder now it will have it...
 
Oct 12, 2009 at 9:07 AM Post #678 of 1,469

thathertz

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Tidus /img/forum/go_quote.gif
So back to the first page of this thread: We have sent an PCM1704UK order (for second batch) to our suppliers. However, we will not confirm the second batch will be PCM1704UK version until we receive those DAC chips.


So i think that if you preorder now it will have it...



This hasn't been confirmed yet though. That's why we're asking.
 
Oct 12, 2009 at 10:14 AM Post #679 of 1,469

Tidus

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Quote:

Originally Posted by thathertz /img/forum/go_quote.gif
This hasn't been confirmed yet though. That's why we're asking.


Hm this information is very important. I will preorder today...soo hmm
 
Oct 12, 2009 at 2:59 PM Post #680 of 1,469

Tidus

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Quote:

Originally Posted by thathertz /img/forum/go_quote.gif
This hasn't been confirmed yet though. That's why we're asking.


Nankai confirm that in batch two will be UK chips
smily_headphones1.gif
)so ill go preorder
 
Oct 12, 2009 at 3:30 PM Post #682 of 1,469

Tidus

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Quote:

Originally Posted by thathertz /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Please let me know where / how it was confirmed.


i ask him through mail...so no prob
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)
 
Oct 12, 2009 at 6:05 PM Post #683 of 1,469

dungie

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Quote:

Originally Posted by rxxdoc /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I believe it sounds better than my Marantz 67se


could you please elaborate on this? what exactly is better? and what is worse? any info would be greatly appreciated
 
Oct 12, 2009 at 7:52 PM Post #684 of 1,469

Woody469

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Fang,

Could you please confirm IN THIS THREAD if the "2nd batch" has the UK chip or not so people can decide what they want to do please. The UK chip is better by a far margin, I will post link when I find it again.
 
Oct 12, 2009 at 7:57 PM Post #685 of 1,469

YtseJamer

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Bojamijams /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Haha good to see you here too pfillion
biggrin.gif



Yes sir, not sure if my wallet is happy about it though
redface.gif


Quote:

Originally Posted by Tidus /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Nankai confirm that in batch two will be UK chips
smily_headphones1.gif
)so ill go preorder



Very good news if it's true !
 
Oct 12, 2009 at 8:07 PM Post #687 of 1,469

Tidus

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Quote:

Originally Posted by pfillion /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Yes sir, not sure if my wallet is happy about it though
redface.gif




Very good news if it's true !



So i dont think he lied...
smily_headphones1.gif
)
 
Oct 12, 2009 at 8:07 PM Post #688 of 1,469

Buckster

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surely its all down to the weakest component in the chain - audio wise

I wouldn't have thought you'd hear the difference 1704 vs 1704UK would you ? really ? I'd be amazed if you could. Its not like the 1704 is a slouch to start with
 
Oct 13, 2009 at 8:07 AM Post #690 of 1,469

SiBurning

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Quote:

Originally Posted by rxxdoc /img/forum/go_quote.gif
It just gets better and better.

I just hooked the line out to my headphone amp.

The HiFiMAN coupled to my Little Country III sounds so damn good, I can't put it into words.

Very Happy!



You beat me to it.

I'm listening through my Portaphile. There's not a single long-life, low power, portable amplifier I like as much as the higher power ones. and the amp module in the HiFiMan is no exception. The Portaphile is my favorite for general use. It gives the dynamics that are missing from any lightweight amp, and the Portaphile's very clean, with a quiet background, and tight bass control. The HiFiMan's amp module does have one thing over the others--it's better tuned for this rig. Still, it gets a bit congested with hard to drive cans, lacks some dynamics, and only drives my cans to moderate levels when turned all the way up.

In a word... Sweet! This rig blows away anything I've heard portable, except that one rig that someone brought to a NY meet... the one that was hooked up to two car batteries.
smily_headphones1.gif


I'm working on a more thorough review, but am getting a bit stuffed up in the bass myself. The permutations of different amps and DACs, portable as well as my home stereo, keep pointing me back to the different things people want out of their rig. As a result, what was going to be a review, is more of a discussion of where the HiFiMan--or any rig--fits into my listening habits.

The HiFiMan resolves quite a bit, which leads me to listen more intently, which demands more attention and energy. At least from me. And that's where my review stuffs me. I've actually found new respect for some of my older rigs precisely because they're less... ahem... demanding. Also, the HiFiMan *is* a first generation product, not a mature product from a mature product line. While it excels in some areas, the sound isn't as "finished" or balanced as some other products--regardless of whether the others are above or below it in terms of fidelity. This is ultimately what makes the Benchmark DAC sound better even though the HiFiMan outperforms it in some things. (Well, okay, it's probably also to do with its dedicated power.) Back to those older rigs, while they don't do anything as well as the HiFiMan, there's a certain maturity or balance to them that makes them enjoyable, if at a lower level of fidelity.


Meanwhile, here are my first impressions from the first hour with them. I think it's still valid.
Quote:

Originally Posted by SiBurning /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Just got mine in the mail an hour ago. It needs time to break in, and I've only listened for an hour, but...

Detailed, somewhat sweet yet clinical, something up with the sound-stage... Is that from not being broken in? Lemme check...

Plugged into my home stereo through the line out... Oh!!!!!! Holy ****! Instrument separation is amazing--excellent tonality without blending instrument timbres together. 3D images... I can hear the violinists turning their instruments. Tonally, it blooms softly in the lower midrange, but is dry above while not straying too far from an "open" resonance. I don't have the headphones to pull off this kind of soundstage, and my etys are broken. This thing is gonna drive some people crazy, the way a $500 CD player does. It does some things very well, so you expect it to get everything right. But it just doesn't work like that in this price range.

That's all for now. I'm gonna go listen some more. Will be back in a few weeks after I break it in.



Since then, they've been running continuously, about 100 hours so far, plugged into the power line, driving my headphones, with the lineout going to my stereo. Today, I pulled it out and started listening portably. That's how I got to compare against other DACs and test the HiFiMan with different amps. I've already mentioned how I prefer it driving my Portaphile.

To compare a little more to the Benchmark (only because that's what I have). The HiFiMan brings more detail out of a quieter background. I'm not really sure, though, whether this is actual detail or a bit of hardness in the HiFiMan's sound signature. As I've mentioned, the Benchmark has a more balanced, mature sound, and one place it shows is in a bit of hardness in the upper midrange or lower treble of the HiFiMan. It also shows in less control in the bass. I think the sweet spot for the HiFiMan is in the midrange. Also, while the HiFiMan has a quieter background, that doesn't necessarily translate into a cleaner sound. Guitar accents, for example, come off cleaner on the Benchmark. They're not really--I think there's more distortion in the Benchmark, but somehow the Benchmark manages to finesse a dirtier music a little better. Finally, both have a a slight veil over the music. While it's more noticeable overall in the Benchmark, the HiFiMan has a more subtle area that may be digital noise or I don't know what, but there's something in the background somewhere. If there's one area where the Benchmark clearly leads, it's in tonal presentation. Somehow, the Benchmark manages to compenstate for a lesser DAC and ultimately sound more musical in a holistic way. All of this holds up whether running them through the home system or cans, regardless of the portable amp driving the cans off the HiFiMan. It's a hard comparison for a portable all-in-one unit to go against a line powered DAC+Amp that runs about double the price, but the HiFiMan holds up remarkably well.

Anyway, I ordered a new pair of Etymotic er4s. Those are relatively easy to drive. I'll have to see how well the amp holds up, but my experience says I'll still want an outboard amp that needs changing (the batteries) every two hours. (For those that don't know me, I used to carry a 4.4 lb. rig someone dubbed the unibomber rig because of all the exposed wiring between all the components.) Will post more when I can get past the lecture and actualy talk about the sound.
 

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