• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required. There are many reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

Sabaj A20d 2023 DAC & HP Amp Review

Rate this DAC & HP Amp

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 9 3.8%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 3 1.3%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 44 18.5%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 182 76.5%

  • Total voters
    238

nclee

New Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2024
Messages
2
Likes
3
I recently settled on this DAC after carefully A/B testing with the SMSL DO300EX, the SMSL 9n, the SMSL DO100, and the Loxjie D40 Pro. My wife and I both gave each other blind tests on our vintage Klipschorns. The Loxjie had audible distortion, but the others were nearly identical. It came down to a slight preference in the sound color and soundstage.

We were hesitant to choose the Sabaj because of those weird handles on the front, but I'm happy to share they can be removed after disassembling the unit using nothing more than a 2.0mm hex driver.

After I got it open, I had a couple unused connectors on the PCB. There is a 7-pin connector next to the display ribbon connector labeled "CONTACT", and a 10-pin connector next to the XMOS chip, unlabeled.

Any idea what those are for?
 

Attachments

  • IMG_0277.jpeg
    IMG_0277.jpeg
    389.5 KB · Views: 133

gvl

Major Contributor
Joined
Mar 16, 2018
Messages
3,448
Likes
4,019
Location
SoCal
Can you please share the picture with handles removed.

Those are likely diagnostic headers or for flashing firmware updates.
 

nclee

New Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2024
Messages
2
Likes
3
Can you please share the picture with handles removed.

Those are likely diagnostic headers or for flashing firmware updates.
Sure thing, here it is without the handles. Looks fairly good next to my old Marantz. I think this is where they got the idea for the script font on the front.
 

Attachments

  • IMG_0292 xl.png
    IMG_0292 xl.png
    2.1 MB · Views: 184

Bahus44

New Member
Joined
Feb 17, 2024
Messages
1
Likes
0
Location
Ukraine
Sorry, if this is not a correct question, but will there be a noticeable increase in sound quality when listening from linear RCA on budget active audio monitors when replacing Fiio K7 with Sabaj A20D without an additional amplifier
 

Sal1950

Grand Contributor
The Chicago Crusher
Forum Donor
Joined
Mar 1, 2016
Messages
14,140
Likes
16,782
Location
Central Fl
Sure thing, here it is without the handles. Looks fairly good next to my old Marantz. I think this is where they got the idea for the script font on the front.
Love the Classic Marantz receiver, I owned a 2270 way back in the day.
Ex-wife took it in the divorce. :mad:

Too bad the Sabaj doesn't include at least one analog input so it could be used as a remote controlled mini-preamp.
I used to use my old Emotiva DC-1 like that, a real handy option.
After 8 years it "keeps on chooglin" in my rig, used mainly today as an excellent R/C headphone amp.
Thanks again to @amirm for his review of it so very long ago, one of ASR's earliest DAC reviews, before SINAD even. LOL
 

ttt

Member
Joined
Oct 17, 2021
Messages
47
Likes
14
@amirm thank you for the work you put in detailed measurements!
I'm trying to find in the pages which 'sound color' settings you used for measueements, because the first one cauaing +15dB SINAD, with no success :(
Can you please share with us, which one was in use to achieve the best results you measured.
Thank you in advance!
 
Top Bottom