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Marantz HD-AMP1 DAC and Integrated Amplifier

invaderzim

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#61
Pull out the Alps blue motorised pot and the speaker terminals and toss the rest. Ooops, should I say, recycle the rest.

Not surprising to see the PSU harmonics when the mains side bridge rectifier for the SMPS is sitting right under low level circuitry on the board above. What a mess.

:)
I often wonder in situations like this if there were people working on it that pointed out the same issue but were shouted down by those that insisted it be a certain overall size and cost.
 

anmpr1

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#62
@amirm pls. now it's enough of this shame ... Mr. Saul Marantz would turn in his grave if he knew abt. these measurements ... :facepalm:
Saul Marantz was sort of the original Mark Levinson. A marketeer with high aspirations, and a drive for producing quality products. The last of the true Saul Marantz stuff was probably the 10B tuner, circa 1964. A luxury product with good specs, but by the early to mid '70s, decent Japanese solid state tuners had made the Model 10 obsolete. Marantz tube amps/preamps command a premium, for collectors. A huge premium. Back then, at least for the common man, David Hafler was the audiophile ticket. Even beat up Dyna amps sell for more today than they did when new. There's a solid upgrade hobbyist market for them--a cheap way to tinker and get nice sound. Few would ever do this with Saul Marantz gear, because it is so valuable, and would lose value if modified.
 

Xyrium

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#63
Well the website name is "audiosciencereview" not "audioopinionsandreviews" so I'd hoped to see basic scientific method in play, rather than subjective assessments. I can go watch well crafted John Darko videos if I want that.
That closing is actually quite good. I like will admit though, I do enjoy Darko for what he provides, nonetheless. ;)

I often wish Amir could spend more time with some of the components, but then I look at the battery of tests he runs, and the amount of equipment he measures, then I'm fascinated that he can even spend as much time as he does.

I'm definitely disappointed by these numbers; the head out impedance is weird though. Something is wrong there.
 
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graz_lag

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#64
... FX-802D which defines me as a non sustainable cheap "Chinese trash" lover. ...
How these manufacturers, FX-Audio in this particular case, can stuff so many quite-well performing features into a $75 package, equals to a kind of mystery of faith to me ... :rolleyes:
 

D700

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#65
Purchase post-mortem:
Initially turned away from HD-AMP1 based on the pan here on ASR. I bought, then returned an NAD C 368 which had better specs, more features. However the sound wasn't punchy, it would go loud but sound seemed compressed. Trying an analog input, found audible distortion on both channels, so returned it. Then went and listened to several Rotels (1592 and the lessor separates). 1592 sounded fantastic but price/size wasn't ideal. Looked at Yamaha but construction seemed cheap, didn't bother to listen (great features though).

After listening to some Prima Luna amps, then looking at THD specs for tube stuff...I realized that perhaps I'm just not as critical a listener as others on this forum. (Love tube sound) So I ended purchasing the HD-AMP1 after all. To me, after a week, it sounds great: taught, punchy bass, open airy highs ... exactly what the NAD lacked. Love the size and I've got 1 power cord for: Preamp, DAC, AMP...in office this was a big deal as shelf space is premium and I didn't want cords everywhere.

At this $1000 price point, I'm happy. At reasonable volume (<80 db avg SPL) plenty for my LS50s. Also FYI, the gain selector for headphone control makes a huge difference in output, easily powers my MassDrop HD6XX headphones.

I realize many on ASR are looking for the ultimate knee in the curve for performance and price, I guess I'm content to be in the next tier of "sounds good to me" folks who like nice stuff.

I'll be watching if a collective winner emerges here though, appreciate the debate. Thanks again Amir.

I'd love to see an all in one in <$2000 range with:
-Great DAC with multiple optical/coax inputs and USB
-Subwoofer digital out with configurable crossover points.
-NC400 Hypex AMP or equal
-Streamer that supports all services, has in house desktop/mobile apps (FYI NAD doesn't support Pandora which I learned after...almost a dealbreaker for me).
-Maybe room correction
-With specs you all like:)

The NAD M10 looks promising..but a little leery of the quality, don't feel like waiting. The Naim Unit wasn't around to demo, also pricey.

Now to decide on a streamer.
 
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graz_lag

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#66
Purchase post-mortem:
Initially turned away from HD-AMP1 based on the pan here on ASR. I bought, then returned an NAD C 368 which had better specs, more features. However the sound wasn't punchy, it would go loud but sound seemed compressed. Trying an analog input, found audible distortion on both channels, so returned it. Then went and listened to several Rotels (1592 and the lessor separates). 1592 sounded fantastic but price/size wasn't ideal. Looked at Yamaha but construction seemed cheap, didn't bother to listen (great features though).

After listening to some Prima Luna amps, then looking at THD specs for tube stuff...I realized that perhaps I'm just not as critical a listener as others on this forum. (Love tube sound) So I ended purchasing the HD-AMP1 after all. To me, after a week, it sounds great: taught, punchy bass, open airy highs ... exactly what the NAD lacked. Love the size and I've got 1 power cord for: Preamp, DAC, AMP...in office this was a big deal as shelf space is premium and I didn't want cords everywhere.

At this $1000 price point, I'm happy. At reasonable volume (<80 db avg SPL) plenty for my LS50s. Also FYI, the gain selector for headphone control makes a huge difference in output, easily powers my MassDrop HD6XX headphones.

I realize many on ASR are looking for the ultimate knee in the curve for performance and price, I guess I'm content to be in the next tier of "sounds good to me" folks who like nice stuff.

I'll be watching if a collective winner emerges here though, appreciate the debate. Thanks again Amir.

I'd love to see an all in one in <$2000 range with:
-Great DAC with multiple optical/coax inputs and USB
-Subwoofer digital out with configurable crossover points.
-NC400 Hypex AMP or equal
-Streamer that supports all services, has in house desktop/mobile apps (FYI NAD doesn't support Pandora which I learned after...almost a dealbreaker for me).
-Maybe room correction
-With specs you all like:)

The NAD M10 looks promising..but a little leery of the quality, don't feel like waiting. The Naim Unit wasn't around to demo, also pricey.

Now to decide on a streamer.
You do like the Swiss knifes !!! :D
Hmm ... if one function gets obsolete by the technological progress, or broken ... you are forced to replace the entire machine ...
Of course I do not know what the turnover is of your gears in your setups ...
 

D700

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#67
You do like the Swiss knifes !!! :D
Hmm ... if one function gets obsolete by the technological progress, or broken ... you are forced to replace the entire machine ...
Of course I do not know what the turnover is of your gears in your setups ...
yeah, I've been wrestling with this very topic! I just ordered a Sangean HDT-20 for HD-Radio, I listen a lot in my car and miss having my stations in the office. I also have large CD collection, am going to order a HD-CD1 just for the integration and size. I'm contemplating the new Denon DNP-800NE or BlueSound Node 2i for a streamer (for spotify and local NAS stream of hi rez)...but I will also have my Mac plugged into the USB port. I've decided to retire my Squeezebox 3, i'm tired of fighting LMS and mysqueezebox hassles. I haven't had one music source win out over another yet....and I'm just starting to download hi-rez files.

So for now, the HD-AMP1 with 2 opticals, Coax, USB really fits....but ...all the wires and boxes do get old...its 2019, its not rocket science. If someone will bake everything into 1 nice unit, all controlled via app, I'd probably go that direction for the main system and other areas of house. The Sonos Amp concept was tempting...but no hi-rez, no headphone jacks.
 

PierreV

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#68
Purchase post-mortem:
So I ended purchasing the HD-AMP1 after all. To me, after a week, it sounds great: taught, punchy bass, open airy highs
Glad you like it. The HD-AMP1 + LS50 is the combo I use the most, partly because it is the one that fits best in my office where I spend most of my time, partly because it is not tiring. After a couple of years, that is definitely not a purchase I regret. I have a couple of way more expensive systems that apparently measure well, 3-4 systems in between, a few cheaper ones and I am now setting vintage combos. Some of them are "better", of course, but not in a way that would make the HD-AMP1+LS50 combo sound bad by any means.

Lots of people in forums will argue vehemently about systems they have never owned or even heard: one always is someone else's idiot. As far as I am concerned, it doesn't matter as long as you enjoy it ;)
 

Xyrium

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#69
Purchase post-mortem:
Initially turned away from HD-AMP1 based on the pan here on ASR. I bought, then returned an NAD C 368 which had better specs, more features. However the sound wasn't punchy, it would go loud but sound seemed compressed. Trying an analog input, found audible distortion on both channels, so returned it. Then went and listened to several Rotels (1592 and the lessor separates). 1592 sounded fantastic but price/size wasn't ideal. Looked at Yamaha but construction seemed cheap, didn't bother to listen (great features though).

After listening to some Prima Luna amps, then looking at THD specs for tube stuff...I realized that perhaps I'm just not as critical a listener as others on this forum. (Love tube sound) So I ended purchasing the HD-AMP1 after all. To me, after a week, it sounds great: taught, punchy bass, open airy highs ... exactly what the NAD lacked. Love the size and I've got 1 power cord for: Preamp, DAC, AMP...in office this was a big deal as shelf space is premium and I didn't want cords everywhere.

At this $1000 price point, I'm happy. At reasonable volume (<80 db avg SPL) plenty for my LS50s. Also FYI, the gain selector for headphone control makes a huge difference in output, easily powers my MassDrop HD6XX headphones.

I realize many on ASR are looking for the ultimate knee in the curve for performance and price, I guess I'm content to be in the next tier of "sounds good to me" folks who like nice stuff.

I'll be watching if a collective winner emerges here though, appreciate the debate. Thanks again Amir.

I'd love to see an all in one in <$2000 range with:
-Great DAC with multiple optical/coax inputs and USB
-Subwoofer digital out with configurable crossover points.
-NC400 Hypex AMP or equal
-Streamer that supports all services, has in house desktop/mobile apps (FYI NAD doesn't support Pandora which I learned after...almost a dealbreaker for me).
-Maybe room correction
-With specs you all like:)

The NAD M10 looks promising..but a little leery of the quality, don't feel like waiting. The Naim Unit wasn't around to demo, also pricey.

Now to decide on a streamer.
Are you using integrated amps for headphone use only, or do you own speakers? I have the 368 going into a pair of low end Dynaudio Emit 10s and it's excellent. I probably haven't heard distortion this low, and the signal so clean that timbre on acoustic instruments is scary.

If you are indeed just using this for cans, you sound more like an AKG 702 candidate. The Sennheiser house sound is rather soft on the top end, I've had the 600s, and currently have the MD 580s, and though I like the 580s more, they are still a little soft. My Fiio A5 helps out a bit there, and I like the sound overall, which actually matches the C368/Emit10 combo quite well.
 

D700

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#70
Are you using integrated amps for headphone use only, or do you own speakers? .
KEF LS50s. I waffled back and forth that it might be bad unit...but I came across folks in other forums who had same experience with it...enough that I didn't attempt a 2nd unit. If you are getting good results, awesome. It has a ton of great features, I really wanted it to work for me.
 

Xyrium

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#71
KEF LS50s. I waffled back and forth that it might be bad unit...but I came across folks in other forums who had same experience with it...enough that I didn't attempt a 2nd unit. If you are getting good results, awesome. It has a ton of great features, I really wanted it to work for me.
Ok, got it. Yep, different strokes... That said, I've heard about NAD having QC issues in the past, but the features on the 368 just worked for me. I am pleased that it operates perfectly, but also hope it will last a few years without any headaches. Bel Canto seems like a great option for you though!
 

Frank Dernie

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#72
I'm definitely disappointed by these numbers; the head out impedance is weird though. Something is wrong there.
Using headphones for serious listening is a relatively recent thing. I bet this amp is typical of how most amps headphone outlet (if it has one) have been for the last 50 years. Headphones have been high impedance until recently and so an output impedance of this level would have been no problem Historically. It was a simple task to stick an in line resistance to the main output to protect headphones so that is what has usually been done. An amp with a separate headphone amp built in was a rare beast.
With the advent of low impedance ‘phones a more specialised headphone amp is needed. For almost all of the headphones I have used for the last 50 years or so this would be no problem in fact and quite a few today too.
 

D700

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#74
Just FYI, the HD-AMP1 has adjustable gain, Low, Medium and High. Amir did not confirm which setting was used during his test. High works well with my Senn HD6XX. The Headphone Amp is described as a dedicated separate amp block. From the Marantz engineer's write up: "Also equipped with a high slew rate op amp and a high-braking headphone amplifier combining the company's discrete configuration HDAM-SA 2 buffer amplifier". Whatever all that means.

Here's 2 articles from a Japanese site, one is an interview with the lead engineer about the unit, for those electrical engineers here who are interested in the choices made. Pretty geeky stuff but interesting behind the scenes.

https://www.phileweb.com/interview/article/201601/21/332.html
https://www.phileweb.com/review/article/201704/18/2450.html

Also, from the review that first put HD-AMP1 on my radar, reviewer refers to a "Darlington Circuit"...I remember thinking it was a bad translation but then looked up that there was indeed such a circuit. Not sure how the reviewer talks about it but Sawada doesn't.

https://www.modernhifi.de/marantz-hd-amp1-test/

"The modules are also used in conjunction with a feedback-free Darlington circuit in the headphone amplifier. Thus, the Marantz HD-AMP1 is well prepared for different headphone impedances"

Again, YMMV, it sounds great to me..but I love tubes too so accuracy isn't my main concern I guess.
 
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confucius_zero

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#76
Did you test the speaker output (Sinad and SNR) of this device?
 
OP
amirm

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Thread Starter #77

orangejello

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#78
FYI, There is very little relation between the HD-DAC1 and the HD-AMP1 is seems. They have completely different dacs. The HD-DAC1 has a Cirrus Logic and the HD-AMP1 has an ESS Sabre. So I wouldn't draw any conclusion about the HD-DAC1 based on the amp.
 

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