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Hegel H95 Review (Streaming Amplifier)

amper42

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It's interesting reading H95 comments by folks that I'm guessing don't have the Hegel H95? It might be very helpful if ASR integrated amp reviews included a listening test?

This morning I setup two systems and switched between them with the same music.
1. System 1 = Hegel H90 (prior version of H95) playing on BMR Monitors using USB input.
2. System 2 = RME ADI-2 DAC FS with 200W stereo amp playing on BMR Monitors using USB input.

I started playing both systems simultaneously with "101 Eastbound" from FourPlay. I simply mute the Hegel and unmute the ADI-2 DAC and visa versa to see if I could detect a tiny difference while sound level matched at 75dB. After doing this for an extended period I didn't hear a difference that would allow me to identify one system from the other.

If the H95 is as bad as some of the comments in this thread indicate I should be able to tell these two setups apart? Right? Once you complete this listening test you realize this thread is a lot of typing over nothing audible. In my book how my setup sounds is the final word. That doesn't seem to matter for many responses in this thread? :p:D:facepalm::D
 

Willem

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You are right that the sonic differences between remotely decent amplifiers and DACs are hard to detect, if at all (they have been for ages), and even when one measures quite badly. My hunch would be that you would only be able to hear a difference with highly dynamic music, and only because power is king. At the same time, at the more modest level of traditional 2x100 watt integrated amplifiers, the Yamaha AS 701 would be at least as good as the Hegel, for a lot less. And if we are talking looks and a modern use case, how about a 2x125 watt Sonos Amp? It looks sleek, and even better, you can put it away out of sight. There is no better looking amplifier than an invisible amplifier.
 

voodooless

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This morning I setup two systems and switched between them with the same music.
1. System 1 = Hegel H90 (prior version of H95) playing on BMR Monitors using USB input.
2. System 2 = RME ADI-2 DAC FS with 200W stereo amp playing on BMR Monitors using USB input.

I started playing both systems simultaneously with "101 Eastbound" from FourPlay. I simply mute the Hegel and unmute the ADI-2 DAC and visa versa to see if I could detect a tiny difference while sound level matched at 75dB. After doing this for an extended period I didn't hear a difference that would allow me to identify one system from the other.
That is the whole point right. One could get a Apple dongle and an Aiyama A07 for about $€£ 100 and also have a combination that would be audibly just as transparent as your combo’s. So what would be the point in spending so much $€£?
If the H95 is as bad as some of the comments in this thread indicate I should be able to tell these two setups apart? Right?
No.

But thanks for disproving all of Hegels marketing claims about how much superior their amp is ;)
 
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arcy

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I said maybe your speakers do and maybe it could be your hearing ;) Sounds like your golden ears and perfect speakers have you satisfied, enjoy the hobby.
Leave your sarcasm in the bar. your logic still doesn't hold regardless of using "maybe" word. Speaking of speakers you should love them as armirm measured them so well.
 

arcy

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I know this has been answered, but here's another spin. First of all both reviews sing the praises of the Hegel, only in the case of the second review, he said digital (and here he goes off the deep end to explain that it's the best kind of digital and starts mumbling about algorithms and whatnot to explain the "artificial" wide separation instead of merely accepting the intrinsic limitations inherent to phono playback, before finally admitting he has no idea what he is talking about) but goes on to make claims about how exceptional the sound was, and then concludes the review with analog sucked, I tried and tried, and this unit simply couldn't make magic.

What I heard were too infomercials, only deprived of much in the way of actual information. I also have a guess as to why instruments jumped out of the velvety black backgroud--which surely is not related to the mediocre noise levels that were measured (and might be a cause were they exceptional and playback of a high dynamic range recording was played back st moderate to loud volumes--that would make sense). What if these technically ignorant and self appointed audio gurus had been drinking from the same batch of kool aid during their self taught journeys through the strange world of audio and came to believe that negative feedback is a flaw and only the most judicious use is allowed, and then sparingly. I suspect that given the way the mind works (and illinformed audio press enables) is that negative feedback came to mean that the sound was constrained, confined and strangled by the unrelenting chains of negative feedback. Now a product in hand whose only claim to fame is some device that enables minimal use of negative feedback. Now unfettered by large amounts of global feedback, the sound issued forth free, fluid, and fully expressive. Do you see the way that dubious technical claims can lead to a particular shared perception based on confirmation bias? That's my story. Because it strikes me as far more plausible than some undefined and immeasurable "qualities" of reproduction, that defies any kind of physical description. Ghosts and ESP fall in the same category: Lots of reports but precious little, in fact, no physical evidence to support their existence.
I don't think the first guy was paid by Hegel for his review c'mon - did you even watch it before casting speculations? He bought a used H90 with his money. Also, he compared its sound with his many previous amps and many dacs he reviewed and decided to stay with H90 based on how it sounded. Honestly, I would much trust this guy who uses his ears than armir oscilloscope and a bunch of Apple Dongle/Sinad guys that are present on this forum. To make your hairs stand on your back, he uses Denafrip Ares II DAC which costs a whopping 800$ with it, which is worse as I'm sure you know than Apple donge. He compared many budget topping, smsl etc dacs to it and somehow he chose Ares. I don't think he is paid by anyone and sure anywhere near Darko income.
 

AdamG247

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That is the whole point right. One could get a Apple dongle and an Aiyama A07 for about $€£ 100 and also have a combination that would be audible just as transparent as your combo’s. So what would be the point in spending so much $€£?

No.

But thanks for disproving all of Hegels marketing claims about how much superior their amp is ;)
+1000. :cool:
 

Doodski

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another speculation mayb

BS, music is not all about oompf, I can guarantee that Hegel can provide enough even h95 and 1h really?
What does it require 2 weeks? Get a grip. I've handled ~several hundred different models of amps and it doesn't require long to decide if it has any juice. The Hegel is another average power output amp. It doesn't matter how much lipstick is on the pig it is still a pig and watts are watts. There is no mystique or magic here with the Hegel.
 
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arcy

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What does it require 2 weeks? Get a grip. I've handled ~several hundred different models of amps and it doesn't require long to decide if it has any juice. The Hegel is another averaged power output amp. It doesn't matter how much lipstick is on the pig it is still a pig and watts are watts. There is no mystique or magic here with the Hegel.
more than an 1h yes and who talks magic and mystique?
 

arcy

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No it does not. Maybe you need to subjectively seduce yourself with the sound over days and believe it is glorious and whatever but for a experienced person it takes a short while. Be realistic. :facepalm:
yeah I know. you glanced at armir list and voila 5min is enough. I know you are experienced looking at your stats
 

BDWoody

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Leave your sarcasm in the bar. your logic still doesn't hold regardless of using "maybe" word. Speaking of speakers you should love them as armirm measured them so well.

Sarcasm is par for the course around here...so is the flood of purchasers after a review like this who come to make sure we all know how great it really is, and how dumb we all are.

So far, you've only posted in this thread. Let's give you a break from this one for a few days, and see if you can find or add any value in the rest of the forum.
 

dshreter

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Man buys Benchmark AHB2 for $2,999 - very good, fine objective choice, may you and your amp live even longer than the 112 SINAD

Man buys Hegel H95 for $2,000 that sounds identical to AHB2 plus pre-amp and streaming capabilities - you are the worst kind of audiophool and deserve to be parted with your money, your marriage, and your happiness. Discard it to ebay and purchase a Topping posthaste!
 
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amirm

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Man buys Benchmark AHB2 for $2,999 - very good, fine objective choice, may you and your amp live even longer than the 112 SINAD

Man buys Hegel H95 for $2,000 that sounds identical to AHB2 plus pre-amp and streaming capabilities - you are the worst kind of audiophool and deserve to be parted with your money, your marriage, and your happiness. Discard it to ebay and purchase a Topping posthaste!
Benchmark has three times the power...
 
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