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Burson FUN Headphone Amp Review

Veri

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#21
Might be nice to see if use in a pc case degrades performance. Also, how is that supposed to work? You route rca from an internal DAC to the unit on the inside of a PC?
You route via RCA or 3.5mm>RCA cable to the Fun (either from back of motherboard or external DAC), and power it over its included external PSU or with a SATA cable from your PC.
 
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#22
I'm highly impressed by that. Power supply noise is a big problem in audio. Many Realteks are rated >100dB SNR (ALC1220 is 120dB :eek:) but rarely come close in practice. Plus you get a ground loop via the signal cable ground plus the ATX PSU's ground.

Makes me wonder by how much the performance would degrade when computer-powered. But they included that option means they are confident. (I tried DIYing a computer-powered headphone amp and it failed terribly. Speaker amps seem cool with computer power tho.)

I too tried DIYing a headphone amp in a PC. Ground loops in a PC are a real problem. I had to insert a Dc-Dc isolating power supply in to break the loop. I have also used Jensen audio transformers for this purpose (which I have laying around since I once worked in pro audio).
Question: Does this FUN unit provide any ground isolation? Does it break the loop?
 

Billy Budapest

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#25
Good to see something competitive come from Burson. I used to own a Burson HA-160 and a DA-160 and the build quality on both was tremendous and the casework beautiful in a shiny aluminum kind of way. Got rid of them because I didn’t like the sound.
 

Jimbob54

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#27
He will have to look at the box I sent him. I don't remember if it came pre-installed with the upgraded ones or if they are in the box.
If I recall, they ship with the upgraded installed. Not even sure they include the base level. Was a while ago though.
 
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amirm

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Thread Starter #28
He will have to look at the box I sent him. I don't remember if it came pre-installed with the upgraded ones or if they are in the box.
Sorry, I just taped it and will drop it off at UPS.
 
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#30
I don't understand why this is recommended since it perform to the bottom half of the amp list?

 

wwenze

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#31
What opamps were used? This is the selling point of the Fun.
The headphones are still being driven by the class-A output stage so you're listening to it more than the opamps. In fact most opamps perform better than 0.0005% THD+N unloaded. Loaded is another story of course.

We might see people just bypassing the op-amps altogether and claim "the best op-amp is no op-amp".

I don't understand why this is recommended since it perform to the bottom half of the amp list?
JDS Atom performs much better at USD$99, lol.

As someone has pointed out in another thread (the Schiit amplifier?), "lying down panther" or "recommended" means no major issue. It can also mean "average" or "mediocre".
 

Xyrium

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#32
I don't understand why this is recommended since it perform to the bottom half of the amp list?
I'm not one who buys into SINAD telling the whole story in these evals. So, perhaps the other features round it out enough to put it in the "buy now" category. Seemed like a solid performer overall, though I hate those top hat knobs, had 'em on a few Gibby's, they're impossible to grip quickly, or roll with your pinky.

--OR--

Because Amir is getting soft? ;)
 

wwenze

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#33
This meme becomes relevant



A new review site starts with a few products that measure well. However as it digs through the rest of the market it finds more and more products of similar competitiveness. (Yay capitalism) The personal perspective however may not catch up. Or, with a site that produces one review every two days, it is difficult just to comb through the data.

Hence a recommendation is to put price and date info below the SINAD numbers chart.

I'm not one who buys into SINAD telling the whole story in these evals. So, perhaps the other features round it out enough to put it in the "buy now" category. Seemed like a solid performer overall, though I hate those top hat knobs, had 'em on a few Gibby's, they're impossible to grip quickly, or roll with your pinky.

--OR--

Because Amir is getting soft? ;)
Customer's requirement vs supply plays a big role. I like to use the iLoud as an example, because if judging based on performance/price alone, there are many (bigger) speakers that perform much better, even if only in terms of bass frequency range but that is very important in overall performance.

However if we're talking about performance from a size no bigger than a soda can, then nothing comes close. So depending on situation, it can be "meh" or "there's no alternative".

So what does Burson FUN offer? Class A output stage (yay no crossover distortion) and you can use any class AB op-amp you want (yay crossover distortion), even those not meant for driving headphones and still get good sound out of it.
 
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amirm

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Thread Starter #34
I don't understand why this is recommended since it perform to the bottom half of the amp list?

That graph does not have a normal distribution so can't go by placement visually.

Regardless, the main thing in a headphone amplifier is clean power and this one has it with 300 ohm load. Objectively and subjectively.
 

Francis Vaughan

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#35
I don't understand why this is recommended since it perform to the bottom half of the amp list?
Why should it not be recommended?

What justification is there for choosing the half way point on the SINAD, (on the scale comprised of only ASR tested devices) as the cutoff?
The Sinad graph is but one of a whole range of metrics. Past a certain point it is pure specmanship and has no bearing on the performance. It is quite possible, that apart from boutique monstrosities, soon all HP amps will measure this well. Do we only recommend those with even higher useless numbers?

Price/performance, power output, output impedance, utility, usability, build quality, customer backup, look and feel. All matter, and when Sinad is past human detection ability, dominate.
 

bunkbail

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#36
The build quality alone justifies the doubled cost over the Atom, for me at least.
 

escalibur

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#37
Might be nice to see if use in a pc case degrades performance. Also, how is that supposed to work? You route rca from an internal DAC to the unit on the inside of a PC?
You can always use Burson Swing with it. :p
 

wwenze

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#38
The build quality alone justifies the doubled cost over the Atom, for me at least.
Hmm what is build quality?

I once fixed a nice audiophile amplifier. Heavy-duty aluminum case.

The part that spoilt was the connector.

If it was rephrased as "the price of the individual parts are higher hence justifies the higher combined price", I would buy that argument. But to me build quality is synonymous with reliability as a whole and one can never know.
 
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#39
what is build quality?
apparently, it can be measured too and will improve the listening experience drastically over sound quality which is an inferior weighted metric.
 

Francis Vaughan

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#40
apparently, it can be measured too and will improve the listening experience drastically over sound quality which is an inferior weighted metric.
You were however complaining about SINAD, which is not a weighted metric of sound quality. It is a metric that past a certain point ceases to be of further value in any balanced metric of perceived sound quality. The amplifier reviewed here has past that point. So long as any device is past that point, any additional SINAD performance does not add to the sound quality.
 
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