And where would we get a proper sample size from?Having a poll is really great. I would love to have it included in every future review. Perhaps, a durability/reliability poll (e.g. die after X months, channel imbalance, etc.) or some sort is better since just saying good-bad is not that meaningful.
TBH I'm getting a bit tired of seeing yet another Topping DAC being reviewed lately (DACs in general really), it's good to see some different HW that in the grand scheme of things we'd all have cut arms off to have 3-4 years ago!this is nice, but a bit pricey. also it's not a new topping dac, leaving me kind of unsatisfied.
Yes, same here, as that would be my primary use. Maybe even just one spot check to see if the preamp matches up in one specific in/out combination, and only check others if it does not. In particular, I think balanced in to balanced out. It might even show better performance, on par with the unbalanced headphone out, which would then warrant further testing.I appreciate what you do and hate to ask you to do extra things, but spot checks on preamp outputs for these amplifiers seems like a good idea, especially when a device exhibits odd behavior in other ways like this one does. The 'desktop preamp' is certainly a marketed use case for these kind of amps. Maybe just make it a simple dashboard for preamp to verify performance....your review depth has certainly expanded over time, and you've had some noteworthy findings as you've done so.
IMO headless is the best rating a headphone amp with no PEQ functionality can attain.
Anyone who are looking for headphones amplifiers in this price range will probably consider this device, especially if said person trusts the ASR standards and this amplifier got a recommendation from Amir.Nice device.
But the question for me is: Who nees such a device in this days? Normally more or less all DAC´s offer a headphone connector, most of all amplifiers do so. So where is the benefit of this thing? Okay, if you are using a cheap DAC with no headphone plug, than this device could make sense, but otherwise? Im using an older Benchmark DAC2 with headphone plugs and when im listening with my AKG K701 it does sound very well and more than loud enough. No distortion audible and no problems with sub-frequencies like 12 Hz or so ;-)
I could think of some "extreme" organ or electronic music, but I believe any sane mastering engineer would apply a high pass to the sub 20Hz range. Why? Because it strains speakers (possibly to the point of damage) and amps, without audible "profit". For me, it's the same nonsense as having >20kHz content in the audio signal....So there's a fair bit of music and movies with content below 12Hz...
From googling it I found out that below 20Hz content is quite common in movies, and I remember reading about a scene in Black Hawk Down where the helicopter blades were captured by like a 8Hz sound. My question was really what happens to the amp when it tries to play any level of signal below 12Hz? When it goes into protection what do you notice as a user? I'm trying to put it into perspective so that I can potentially change my vote from headless panther to golfing panther.I could think of some "extreme" organ or electronic music, but I believe any sane mastering engineer would apply a high pass to the sub 20Hz range. Why? Because it strains speakers (possibly to the point of damage) and amps, without audible "profit". For me, it's the same nonsense as having >20kHz content in the audio signal.
It's not so much of an issue of what happens to your speakers / subs / headphones, it's more what happens to the headphone amp when it tries to play any content below 12Hz. If you're saying that the amplifier cuts out completely as soon as it encounters any level of signal (rather than 0dBFS?) below 12Hz then that's just an annoying bug - I can imagine that being tripped by quite a few movies, maybe less so with music. But is the amp tripped into protection mode with say a -5dBFS signal below 12Hz, or perhaps a -10dBFS signal below 12Hz, maybe only with 0dBFS signal?If the amp goes into protection it should cut out completely. 8Hz is plain insane, some subs are likely to simply not play it in reality, because they have subsonic filters, and for good reasons. If your sub doesn't have one, try to play a 20Hz tone (cautiously, starting from -60dB at least) and look what it does to the membrane.