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miniDSP Flex HT - Review and Measurements

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This is a review of the miniDSP Flex HT. The Flex HT is the latest iteration on the Flex platform. HT stands for „home theater“.

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Note: The unit tested has been send to me by miniDSP for feedback and testing purposes. I am not associated with miniDSP nor did I receive compensation for this review. MiniDSP had no editorial influence.

The unit offers USB, coax SPDIF, optical SPDIF, bi-directional eARC. WISA will be added through a future hardware update. I tried to bring up HDMI on my PC, but was not successful. Will try it later on a denon receiver.

IMG_8151.jpeg

Measurements​

The unit delivers 2Vrms out. THD is negligible small. The miniDSP Flex HT brings the QA403 to its limits.

01_dashboard.jpg

Jitter is clean:

02_jitter.jpg


CCIF Multitone is clean. Note that I have not been using an AES17 filter:

03_CCIF_19+20kHz.jpg

Multitone is clear:

04_multitone.jpg


Crosstalk is absolutely not an issue. Note: dBV=dBFS!

05_crosstalk.jpg

Software​

The unit is controlled by miniDSP device console – It is an awesome tool. Flashing, setup, upgrades... everything is quick and clear.
DC.png


Pros:
  • Trigger output
  • Awesome package and power in a little box
  • miniDSP Device Console is a competitive advantage
  • Dirac Live for those who do not want to tune themself
  • Wisa Support through future update
Cons:
  • Sharp eges on the glass (especially the upper left corner)
  • No Bluetooth
  • No in-box decoding of DTS, 5.1 or Dolby Atmos signals
  • External switch mode power supply
Verdict:
  • buy!
 
Last edited:

kadajawi

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I'm curious, which ESS?

@Chr1: Or 900 Euro in Europe...
 
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kadajawi

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Wow. 900 Euro is a premium price for sure. Not good.
Yeah, I was also rather surprised by just how much the (so far only) dealer in Europe is charging. Taxes do not explain that difference. Yeah, their service is supposed to be good, but... _that_ good? I've just ordered one directly from MiniDSP. Yeah, it might take longer, but the price difference...
 

TheBatsEar

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@amirm This might be one to promote to the review index.

@Philipp Paul Klose Cheers for the measurements. I have the regular Flex.
Does this one decode Dolby Digital, DTS, Atmos and all those formats?
 

RickyC34

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"Flex HTx does not support bitstream (e.g. Dolby/DTS) decoding. The audio source must be able to output linear PCM (LPCM) for multichannel support over HDMI. "
 

vicenzo_del_paris

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Yeah, I was also rather surprised by just how much the (so far only) dealer in Europe is charging. Taxes do not explain that difference. Yeah, their service is supposed to be good, but... _that_ good? I've just ordered one directly from MiniDSP. Yeah, it might take longer, but the price difference...
It was the same when the Flex unbalanced first came out.
475$ from minidsp and 800€ from audiophonics.
They explained to me that on first supply batch they don't get batch discounts while they do on further ones.
And few months after its release, it was at 650€ at audiophonics.
Retailers price includes import duties, vat and they provide legal warranty. And of course they need to make a bit of money on it.
No mysteries there.
I guess that the Flex HT will drop to something to 750-800€ by spring time.

When the Flex came out, I did not want to wait and I got it from minidsp at that time for 565€ all included. Nice saving from European price but being on my own if the unit had issues.
Once again, if being reasonable, I would wait for spring to get the HT from audiophonics retail price to drop.
But, knowing myself, I am going to order it now from minidsp :)
Expecting about 675€ all included.
And will have a regular Flex to sell soon!

Note: when buying overseas directly from Minidsp, one should always buy Dirac licence online afterward to no pay VAT on the licence (as USP/FedEx would calculate VAT from declared goods cost).
 
Last edited:

Sokel

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That's not a clean jitter measurement:

1700725981913.jpeg

The opposite I would say.What went wrong here?

Edit:Ok,no AES and scale,stretching it looks clean.
 
OP
P
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It was the same when the Flex unbalanced first came out.
475$ from minidsp and 800€ from audiophonics.
They explained to me that on first supply batch they don't get batch discounts while they do on further ones.
And few months after its release, it was at 650€ at audiophonics.
Retailers price includes import duties, vat and they provide legal warranty. And of course they need to make a bit of money on it.
No mysteries there.
I guess that the Flex HT will drop to something to 750-800€ by spring time.

When the Flex came out, I did not want to wait and I got it from minidsp at that time for 565€ all included. Nice saving from European price but being on my own if the unit had issues.
Once again, if being reasonable, I would wait for spring to get the HT from audiophonics retail price to drop.
But, knowing myself, I am going to order it now from minidsp :)
Expecting about 675€ all included.
And will have a regular Flex to sell soon!

Note: when buying overseas directly from Minidsp, one should always buy Dirac licence online afterward to no pay VAT on the licence (as USP/FedEx would calculate VAT from declared goods cost).
I thought a lot about the price point, but couldnt come to a conclusion. That is why I didnt mention it in the original post. The only thing I can say is, the box is full of expensive parts. The DSP alone is in small quantities 30USD! Add the opamps, XMOS chips, display, wireless receiver, HDMI transceiver...
 

MCH

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I just saw that miniDSP added AP measurements on their site. I‘d say: both our measurements are coming to the same conclusion.
View attachment 328777
Hmmmm those distortion peaks at -120 dB seem too good to be true for a chip specified at 110. Your results seem more realistic.
If you copied the graph from minidsp website, the results are for the flex eight, not the HT.
 
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