• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). There are daily reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

THX Onyx v.s. Hidizs S9

Grimros

New Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2021
Messages
3
Likes
4
So I have a pair of Shure SE846 currently and going to buy Shure KSE1200 in a few days and I currently use an Asus ROG Phone 3 most of the time. As DAC I currently only have a Helm Bolt DAC. I do have a Tidal Hifi subscription and UAPP with MQA and Parametric EQ plugins bought.

So my question was, between THX Onyx and Hidizs S9, which one would be a better buy if you dont look at the price, but for example at build quality. I've read reviews that Hidizs S9 has a quite loose USB port and sometimes a faulty 3.5mm or 2.5mm port and overall other build/quality problems. So Im not sure if I want to risk having to send it back or wait for a new one.

My SE846 has a 9 ohm impedance, but I cant find anywhere how much the KSE1200 has. Does anyone know? So I can see which dongle DAC to pair with it and my SE846Any other DAC alternatives are fine as long as the build and sound quality are good, usable with phone, so no LTE interference/hiss and as long as it is a dongle dac since I dont want to bandaid my phone to a huge dac and the KSE1200 amplifier.

Also as a side question. Since most dongle DAC like the E1DA 9038D, THX Onyx and Hidizs S9 are called a dac+amplifier, would that conflict with the Shure amplifier already supplied and necessary to use the KSE1200? Im quite confused about that part.
 

AdamG247

Strive not for validation, but rather to be valued
Moderator
Forum Donor
Joined
Jan 3, 2021
Messages
2,208
Likes
5,237
So I have a pair of Shure SE846 currently and going to buy Shure KSE1200 in a few days and I currently use an Asus ROG Phone 3 most of the time. As DAC I currently only have a Helm Bolt DAC. I do have a Tidal Hifi subscription and UAPP with MQA and Parametric EQ plugins bought.

So my question was, between THX Onyx and Hidizs S9, which one would be a better buy if you dont look at the price, but for example at build quality. I've read reviews that Hidizs S9 has a quite loose USB port and sometimes a faulty 3.5mm or 2.5mm port and overall other build/quality problems. So Im not sure if I want to risk having to send it back or wait for a new one.

My SE846 has a 9 ohm impedance, but I cant find anywhere how much the KSE1200 has. Does anyone know? So I can see which dongle DAC to pair with it and my SE846Any other DAC alternatives are fine as long as the build and sound quality are good, usable with phone, so no LTE interference/hiss and as long as it is a dongle dac since I dont want to bandaid my phone to a huge dac and the KSE1200 amplifier.

Also as a side question. Since most dongle DAC like the E1DA 9038D, THX Onyx and Hidizs S9 are called a dac+amplifier, would that conflict with the Shure amplifier already supplied and necessary to use the KSE1200? Im quite confused about that part.
Welcome Aboard @Grimros.
 

JustAnandaDourEyedDude

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Messages
511
Likes
790
Location
USA
impedance, but I cant find anywhere how much the KSE1200 has. Does anyone know?
Also as a side question. Since most dongle DAC like the E1DA 9038D, THX Onyx and Hidizs S9 are called a dac+amplifier, would that conflict with the Shure amplifier already supplied and necessary to use the KSE1200? Im quite confused about that part.
The impedance of the KSE1200 IEM itself is frequency-dependent and is mostly capacitive reactance of the estat drivers, but this is handled by the energizer, and so it is not relevant to the choice of dac-amp dongle. Shure do not list the input impedance of the KSE1200 amp/energizer, but you can take it for granted it should be of the order of many kOhms, much higher than that of any IEM or HP. But this is nothing to worry about. Amps in general are designed to work with input voltage signals and not input power signals, and (unlike an IEM) they have a separate power supply so that they can deliver both voltage and power to the transducer (IEM, HP, loudspeaker). Thus amps have high input impedance, and will sense the time-varying voltage level signal sent by the DAC while drawing negligible power from the DAC (much less than a mW). DAC+amp dongles will generally have no problem at all in driving the KSE1200 amp. Their amp part will see the KSE1200 amp as an extremely high load, and will send it the right voltage signal while being able to push only a tiny amount of power into it per Ohm's Law (and their amp portion will be lightly powered). In turn the DAC+amp dongle will be drawing less power from your phone than if it were driving an IEM directly (though it still needs plenty of power for the DAC part of it). The KSE1200's amp is drawing plenty of power from its own battery, of course (the power for the IEM has to come from somewhere; if it gets less power, the music will be at lower volume). Just as a side-note, a pure DAC (designed to drive amps rather than IEMs or loudspeakers) also functions similarly: it drives a very small amount of power into the amp; however, it expects to see such a high load impedance, and if connected directly to low-impedance IEMs, the DAC's output voltage may sag a bit as it is not designed to supply much power.

You need to be able to control the volume level of the DAC-amp dongle, on your phone or music app at the very least. The KSE1200's amp has a lower input sensitivity (max input voltage it can handle) than usual for a modern headphone amp. If your DAC-amp volume setting (which translates to its voltage output) exceeds that input sensitivity, a little LED on the KSE1200 amp will turn from green to red and indicate that the amp is near clipping. So you should start out with a low volume on your DAC-amp dongle, have music playing from a loud recording, and move up the volume slowly until the LED turns red, then back off a little bit to operate the KSE1200 amp in its good region without clipping.

Some prior mostly subjective discussion of the KSE1200 on ASR:
Best DAC for Shure KSE1200?
 
Last edited:
OP
G

Grimros

New Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2021
Messages
3
Likes
4
Shure do not list the input impedance of the KSE1200 amp/energizer, but you can take it for granted it should be of the order of many kOhms, much higher than that of any IEM or HP. But this is nothing to worry about. Amps in general are designed to work with input voltage signals and not input power signals, and they have a separate power supply so that they can deliver both voltage and power to the transducer (IEM, HP, loudspeaker). Thus amps have high input impedance, and will sense the time-varying voltage level signal sent by the DAC while drawing negligible power from the DAC (much less than a mW). DAC+amp dongles will generally have no problem at all in driving the KSE1200 amp. They will see it as an extremely high load, and will send it the right voltage signal while being able to push only a tiny amount of power into it per Ohm's Law (and their amp portion will be lightly powered). In turn the DAC+amp dongle will be drawing less power from your phone than if it was driving an IEM directly (though it still needs plenty of power for the DAC part of it). The KSE1200's amp is drawing plenty of power from its own battery, of course (the power for the IEM has to come from somewhere).

You need to be able to control the volume level of the DAC-amp dongle, on your phone or music app at the very least. The KSE1200's amp has a lower input sensitivity (max input voltage it can handle). If your DAC-amp volume setting (which translates to its voltage output) exceeds that input sensitivity, a little LED on the KSE1200 amp will turn from green to red and the amp is near clipping. So you should start out with a low volume on your DAC-amp dongle, have music playing from a loud recording, and move up the volume slowly until the LED turns red, then back off a little bit to operate the KSE1200 amp in its good region without clipping.

Some prior mostly subjective discussion of the KSE1200 on ASR:
Best DAC for Shure KSE1200?
Wow, that is a very thorough answer and simple to understand. Thanks for the explanation.

I also went for the Luxury & Precision W2 after much digging around. It should arrive very soon.
 
Top Bottom