Violectric HPA V281 - Vorsprung durch Balanced

Discussion in 'Headphone Amps (full-size)' started by fegefeuer, Feb 12, 2014.
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  1. fdg

    Just for illustration, picture taken from Amazon

    The above adapter is the best way to cook ANY balanced headphone amp.

    What happens:
    A true balanced amp has 4 amp sections, left inphase, left out of phase, right in phase, right out of phase.
    Using this adapter will shorten the left and right out phase amps in a way that they will act against each other.
    They will get hot because of overload.
    With some luck only fuses will blow.
    With less luck the transformer and/or both amps will be blown.
    Further damages may also ruin the remaning amps.
    Please note that all this is not a design issue.
    You will also have no garantee repairs when filling diesel in your car instead of gas.
    Cheers, Fried
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2017
  2. jmac1516
    Hi Fried, what if the female was a 2.5mm TRRS. So balanced to balanced. I assume there are no inherent risks here?
  3. LCMusicLover
    I'll let Fried answer for himself, but I have been using such an adapter for years with a couple different balanced amps (including my v280) without any issues. As you message implies, the 2.5mm TRRS does not short two channels together.

    All of my headphone cables are short with male 2.5mm TRRS termination for portable use with my balanced DAPs. I use the adapter (which is 6' long) to listen to my desktop system.
  4. jmac1516
    Thanks. That's what I assumed but wanted to confirm with some people much more expert than myself!
  5. zhgutov
    TRRS may be okay if you connect it by 4 cables to the headphones correctly. But TRS is not.
    And you should know exactly what you do, because it is easy to put TRS into TRRS socket, which will connect two pins.
    Actually, I don't understand the reason to connect TRS to 4-pin XLR at all. This can not make the connection balanced.
  6. LCMusicLover
    That's the beauty of my system -- I don't have any 2.5mm male TRS terminated ... anything. And it's physically impossible to plug a 3.5mm male TRS plug into the 2.5mm female TRRS socket.

    As far as someone trying to use such an adapter to make headphones balanced, I can only assume a lack of understanding of the difference between balanced and single-ended amplifiers and circuits.

    I do own one of these to allow me to use my balanced IEMs with my Cowon Plenue D, which is only single-ended.
  7. project86 Contributor
    I think people read about how V281 and other balanced amps sound best via their 4-pin XLR output. Without any warnings on the adapter, or knowledge about possible consequences, these folks probably assume this is a safe way to tap the superior balanced output. I guess I understand on some level.... why would such an adapter exist if it was inherently dangerous? And yet, there it is, selling on ebay and amazon and probably other places.
  8. zmhaha
    Yea the amp manufactures really should put a very big warning on their websites and user manuals about this.
    I personally don't know much about the wirings and stuff... but my understanding is:
    OK: balanced out --> adapter --> balanced in
    OK: unbalanced out --> adapter --> balanced in
    NOT OK: balanced out --> adapter --> unbalanced in (possibly damaging the output device)
  9. emptymt
    Hi Guys,

    I just purchased the v281 today, really happy with the auditions in the shop, it was it against the iCan Pro using the Gumby, which I'm happy to elaborate if someone is interested.

    I had to use my DAP which is the Fiio X7 II as the DAC for now, so I'm planning to buy Coax to RCA cable to connect to the v281, is this correct?

    like this:

    I had though of getting the Audioquest tower, but I thought that it wouldn't make a notice-able difference and its only temporary until I get the Gumby.

    From what I read, the v281 will convert single ended signal to balance in the end, is this also correct?

  10. zhgutov
    This is not correct if you want to connect coax (digital!) out of your player to RCA analog inputs of V281.
    You can connect line output (which is 3.5mm jack, I suppose) to RCA analog inputs (2xRCA) of V281.
    Or if you have a DAC option with coax input in your V281, you can connect your player with the supplied cable from coax output to coax input of V281.

    But... Why don't you want to use your Chord Mojo as a good source for a good amp?

    In this case you can use the balanced output for the headphones.
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2017
    emptymt likes this.
  11. emptymt
    right, thx for being very clear, so I think the cables posted in the links i provide will work, thx.
  12. 3083joe
    Question from your post.
    How would you use a chord mojo as a source to feed v281. I don’t see anyway to come out of the mojo into the v281?

    Thanks in advance!
  13. zhgutov
  14. 3083joe
  15. Kio635
    I’ve followed this thread for some time now. Your positive reviews make me want to upgrade from my V200, which is already pretty good with my HD800 and LCD-3 (Fazor). I’ve got the opportunity to buy a new V220 (remote-controlled) for around 1,600 USD or a new V281 (also rc) for around 2,450 USD. As I have only standard 6.3mm jack cables for my headphones I would also have to buy balanced xlr-cables to get the full potential out of the V281. That would add maybe around 400-500 USD to the V281 bill. So, it would be 1,600 $ for V220 or around 2,900 for V281 incl. xlr cables.

    I understand from this thread that V220 and V281 are basically identical except the balanced headphone output. Is the balanced output of the V281 really worth the additional cost – or, in other words - how much better is the balanced connection of the V281 than the normal 6.3mm jack connection of the V220?
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2017
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