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Having a Feeling of Shame Gives Rise to Courage--SMSL M500 V2

WolfX-700

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#1
Amir and I discovered the temperature stability of the SMSL M500 before. After SMSL knew it, they improved the M500.

A few days ago I received this improved unit (already sold).

After the measurement, I was a little excited-so I can't wait to release some quick measurement results.

Photo.jpg


In terms of version identification, SMSL does not do well. According to their statement, only one way to confirm HW: 1.3 in the system version to know that you got the V2 version.

In terms of improvement, according to the official statement: THD, IMD, and temperature stability have all been improved.

Quick measurement results:
Dashboard.jpg


Temp.jpg
 

solderdude

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#2
SINAD improved 5 to 10dB as well depending on temperature of the V1.
 

Feyire

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#5
@WolfX-700, any idea what exactly they changed inside? Added heatsink or..?
 

solderdude

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#7
It's 1 whole dB worse than the top performers Tambaqui and the Matrix Audio but costs only around $400.

I figure it's the looks that make it unimpressive.
At least.. personally I don't like the shape, color and front panel.
 

Fred Jacquot

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#8
I don't really know what to think about the looks. The form factor is quite practical if you want to hide the thing behind a screen.
I suspect the lack of interest is also linked to the lack of latest fashionable chip.
 

Jimbob54

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#10
It's 1 whole dB worse than the top performers Tambaqui and the Matrix Audio but costs only around $400.

I figure it's the looks that make it unimpressive.
At least.. personally I don't like the shape, color and front panel.
If the last few hundred odd posts on the v1 review on here are anything to go by, it's biggest problem is (maybe was) poor handling of (xmos driver) software upgrades. Bricked machines, machines reverting indefinitely to older versions etc.
 

Veri

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#14
Fully agree that performance seems impressive. I am disturbed not too see the usual "I want one NOW".
Well maybe because it's Wolf's review, it's not promoted to front page. Amir already had two M500 v1 reviews too. People know the device, hard to put it in the spotlight yet again, maybe?
 
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#15
Well maybe because it's Wolf's review, it's not promoted to front page. Amir already had two M500 v1 reviews too. People know the device, hard to put it in the spotlight yet again, maybe?
It totally deserves it, given the position in the dac ranking posted recently and it's price compared to it's neighbors in the top 10.

@WolfX-700, any idea what exactly they changed inside? Added heatsink or..?
Came here thinking I just download an upgrade to realize that won't happen. V1 owners should just cry I guess? :p
 

TC!!

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#16
Yeah, where does this leave v1 owners, we're beta testers for SMSL?

(I'm not pissed my v1 still sounds great.)
 

solderdude

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#17
If the last few hundred odd posts on the v1 review on here are anything to go by, it's biggest problem is (maybe was) poor handling of (xmos driver) software upgrades. Bricked machines, machines reverting indefinitely to older versions etc.
Yes, the headless panther in the V1.2 review showed why.
Problem is when buying one online you cannot be sure you get the new version (hardware 1.3) only once you own it you can check if the SW is version 2.0.
When they launched it as M501 (or other number) they could have well generated more sales.
 

tommyst

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#18
Wow that's amazing. I had V1 before and after the firmware upgrade failed, I could send it back to Amazon. I have a new M500 with V2 now. I use it with Beyerdynamic DT1990.
However out of curiosity I also ordered a SP200 some days ago. I wanted to test the headphone amp of M500 versus the SP200 to build up my mind about it's quality. I really didn't exspect much difference, but for me the M500+SP200 did sound much better then compared to the integrated headphone amplifier of M500 alone. The integrated headphone amp had ennough power for my 250 Ohm DT1990, but it sounded a bit sterile. Together with the sp200 the sound is really more defined, more airy and with better stage for me now. Anyone else had similar impressions?
 

Koeitje

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#19
I had issues with audio dropping with a high jitter source (my tv) with the old one, otherwise I would have kept it.
 

Jimbob54

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#20
Yes, the headless panther in the V1.2 review showed why.
Problem is when buying one online you cannot be sure you get the new version (hardware 1.3) only once you own it you can check if the SW is version 2.0.
When they launched it as M501 (or other number) they could have well generated more sales.
Think I missed the 1.2 review .I enjoy my device, now Im getting buyers remorse o_O. Shouldnt have asked,
 
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