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SPL Phonitor X Review (DAC & Headphone Amp)

paolomo

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I had my doubts about SPL units, thanks for confirming, my money will be safer with me.
I think it's great to have access to measurements and information. Regarding SPL units, I own some things from SPL as well as from SMSL (polar opposites!). SPL gives you exemplary build quality (my units will probably outlive me), a very effective customer service (in my experience) and great performance with high impedance headphones. On the other hand, while my SMSL SP400 is not nearly as robust, its sheer performance is off the charts. We live in an age of plenty, I'm telling you :D
 
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amirm

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I would be keen to see if SPL responds to this. There was a video on their site where a Phonitor model had "pegged" the AP525 while measuring SINAD - some 113dB+
I watched that video. They were using a long obsolete Audio Precision Cascade II that was limited to 113 dB or so. I measured something close to it in pre-amp mode. Performance drops however with any thing that has significant load as I showed.
 

Blumlein 88

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Whomever the owner is, I think I would contact SPL and see what they have to say for themselves. I've never had SPL, I've like their look on several pieces of their gear and thought it would at least be very competent and well built.
 

Purité Audio

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Wow I always imagined that this was a really competent design, your work Amir is invaluable.
Keith
 

3125b

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Just had to look up the price - 2200€.
The RME ADI-2 DAC FS is also made in Germany at less than half the price with way better performance.

Edit: So it costs 2560€. That‘s even worse, but then again, at those prices does it really matter :)
 
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Count Arthur

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Looking at the innards, is this fully descrete?:

Bild02.jpg


It's interesting looking at some of the reviews around the web, it seems that it's bigger and more expensive, so it's better. :)
 

brimble

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It makes me sad that this pretty but sonically unimpressive stuff is so expensive. Reminds me of Audio-gd (one of which I bought for the looks and don't enormously regret, although I eventually swapped it for something much cheaper).
 

Koeitje

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Just had to look up the price - 2200€.
The RME ADI-2 DAC FS is also made in Germany at less than half the price with way better performance.

Edit: So it costs 2560€. That‘s even worse, but then again, at those prices does it really matter :)
Thanks for looking it up, I was wondering what it cost myself. I think it looks very nice, but the price is a joke for this kind of performance.
 

restorer-john

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Well, that is not the performance any of us were expecting is it?

Just proves once again that fabulous looks and a compelling story aren't everything. Thanks @amirm for exposing this for what it is.
 

mermayer

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SPL is one of the few manufacturers of amplifiers with a crossfeed option.
Another hot test candidate with USB DAC but without VOLTAiR technology would be the SPL Phonitor One d.
I am disappointed with the SPL test results. So little performance for so much money.
 
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