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How does this compare to the Aune T1?
Look what the tube-fairy brought us!
Nice legs too...
Using this now (stock tubes) with cayin n5ii
And with warm senn hd650.

And via usb-dac (using onboard akm 4490)

im still a novice in this hobby, but for me the akm4490 is sweeter than the detailed ES 9018k2m..
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Wow, that's surprising! So it works as a DAC with no tubes installed... Thanks for checking!
Seems strange to me, but that's great as the DAC in this is a good one and this way you can listen to it clean directly, or colored with tube magic by using the headphone outputs as preamp.
trapnine
I will try to plug my speakers on the headphone amp later.. Right now im enjoying the cayinn5ii- xduoota10- senn momentum2 over ear..
Im in awe, my momentums doesnt sing like this before. But ill try more songs, to be sure.
That single tube doesn't look very balanced.
Unfortunately not true balanced. I’m going to wait till there’s another drop for the Cavalli Liquid Carbon X.
Swampy
The USB DAC is true balanced through the balanced headphone out, and the SPDIF out is a digital signal which can be output to a balanced amp or preamp AFAIK.
Anyone know if the 'tube sound' comes through the RCA line outs and the coax, or is that straight output from the 4490? (can I use it as a DAC for another tube amp, like the DarkVoice)?

Also has anyone tried this and found it sensitive to noise in the AC line? I see the transformer is in the case, not a wall wart, which makes me worry. I'm trying to find something with clean line output.
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trapnine
I'm using USB and AC and it's totally fine. I have to crank this to 80-90 before I start hearing the sound floor on my LCD-2, and it's still quiet even with the tube buffer. It's much better IMO in this regard compared to the Little Dot 1+ 3.0 and 4.0. There is more shielding with this than the little dot, so at least in my case with both my laptop and TA-10 on the same circuit, it's totally fine.
Coax is cleaner than USB but there's more jitter issues. USB->Coax converter would help with jitter issues, but won't help with isolation. I would just use USB input on this, jitter, AC and USB noise are not worth considering at this price point IMO.
It is wild that they keep dropping this as "balanced" when xDuoo confirmed it's not, ages ago.
This or the CTH + SDAC?
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Heh, well at least that makes sense. Maybe they should use this as a selling point on future CTH drops:

* Rated "one of the noisiest amps you'll get" by junki on the massdrop forums!
Jaggi
I mean at least he said the DAC was a solid choice lul
Definitely single-ended on the aux inputs but is this "balanced" on the USB input? If not, the description is misleading. Massdrop needs to correct this right away rather than misleading potential buyers.
I'm torn between this and the Little Dot 1+? Which on should I get? Can this power T50RPs? I just want to have a hybrid amp that can power those cans.
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Thanks for the reply! I already have a Darkvoice but as far as I know, using planars on OTL tube amps is not ideal, hence I want a hybrid amp for my planar cans. I decided to get a Bravo Ocean along with a JJ 12AU7 replacement tube. I already have a good DAC so I scrapped the idea getting the TA-10.
Zenwalker
Yeah, kinda tough to find a good tube sound for planars. I've heard of tubes that affect the DAC sound output like the Aune tube DAC/amp that is on here now and again, and that the tube colors the sound if you were to use the DAC to connect to another amp. Of course then you have to consider the harmony of that with a solid state amp that colors it again.

Damn you, planars!
So should I buy this or wait for the darkvoice to come back around?
Buckaboo
Sorry for replying after the drop ended. This is going to be the cheapest all in one with an XLR output with such power in both single ended and XLR. It is basically a Magni 2 with a good DAC chip.

The darkvoice may sound better with tube rolling for high impedance headphones but for lower impedance headphones this will have less distortion/noise due to impedence output. So if you have a large variety of headphones that aren't 250+ ohms, this would work better. Think having the AKG 7XX, the fostex X00, hd 6XX, and a beyerdynamic 990 pro 250/600 ohm and this will power them all decently with little distortion/impedance output under control since it says 8 ohm suitable output for sensitive headphones, the darkvoice might have issues with the lower impedance headphones like the fostex X00 and planar magnetic headphones since the tubes and darkvoice impedance output is higher than this, so IEMs and planar magnetic headphones are going to pick up noise with the darkvoice.

This is essentially an all in one, so if you don't have a DAC or an amp, this is the cheapest you can get a single and XLR output (and one of the cheapest tube amps with an XLR out in general) so if you don't have a DAC (again sorry for replying after the drop ended) this is a good starter. If you already have a DAC you like, and have the higher impedance Sennheiser and Beyerdynamic headphones, go grab the darkvoice.

If you don't have a DAC, if you don't want to grab one of these off eBay at a higher price (closer to the cavali plus sdac price which would be one of the next cheapest DAC/amps with XLR out, but this Xduoo would still cheaper by a bit) I recommend a Topping D30 DAC.

If you just need the amp, darkvoice would be my recommendation if you have the high impedance headphones. Otherwise for the price, single ended Magni 3 has more or similar power to the darkvoice at the higher impedance levels and does well with lower impedance headphones, but no tube rolling.
Brosefstalin42
> It is basically a Magni 2 with a good DAC chip.

What? Nothing you said makes sense.

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