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Dissapointing mini m-dac review

muljao

New member
Jul 18, 2016
154
0
0
Not with the unit itself, but no mention of the headphone amp stage, power ability, what headphones it could possibly drive, are the rca line outs line level or variable preamp type, is the Bluetooth aptx? Kind of leaves a lot of blanks
 

Al ears

Moderator
muljao said:
Not with the unit itself, but no mention of the headphone amp stage, power ability, what headphones it could possibly drive, are the rca line outs line level or variable preamp type, is the Bluetooth aptx? Kind of leaves a lot of blanks
You are not wrong. I think we can assume its going to be able to drive all headphones anyone spending this sort of money is likely to attach to it but there are gaping holes in the information in the review that's for sure.
 

luckylion100

New member
Nov 6, 2011
72
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0
I'm sure What Hi-fi simply employ a basic template for their reviews, swap and change limited details as deemed necessary. I'm not sure if in the printed magaizine the reviewers ever put their name to their at times sub standard reviews? Is the website version the exact same as the print version?

So many times have I sought a very basic yet key piece of information as Muljao has mentioned above to find it's been omitted. Generally the +/- points are vague and conflicting.

I also believe the publication is very brand biased. One particular product recently received a terrible subjective review on What Hi-fi yet elsewhere in the Hi-Fi press received rave reviews backed by objective bench testing,

I stopped buying the magazine years ago.
 

nopiano

Well-known member
Feb 15, 2009
174
53
18,670
luckylion100 said:
I'm sure What Hi-fi simply employ a basic template for their reviews, swap and change limited details as deemed necessary. I'm not sure if in the printed magaizine the reviewers ever put their name to their at times sub standard reviews? Is the website version the exact same as the print version?

So many times have I sought a very basic yet key piece of information as Muljao has mentioned above to find it's been omitted. Generally the +/- points are vague and conflicting.

I also believe the publication is very brand biased. One particular product recently received a terrible subjective review on What Hi-fi yet elsewhere in the Hi-Fi press received rave reviews backed by objective bench testing,

I stopped buying the magazine years ago.
As a matter of editorial policy the reviews are joint efforts of several of the team, and so never carry an author's name.

Two recent examples spring to mind - the Oppo DAC and the SME 15 - got less praise than elsewhere. I agree the summaries are sometimes unhelpful, but if you want to see sloppy editing of good content try Hi Fi World. An interesting read but shoddy layout and proofing.

BTW, I subscribe to both.
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
739
298
5,270
Al ears said:
muljao said:
Not with the unit itself, but no mention of the headphone amp stage, power ability, what headphones it could possibly drive, are the rca line outs line level or variable preamp type, is the Bluetooth aptx? Kind of leaves a lot of blanks
You are not wrong. I think we can assume its going to be able to drive all headphones anyone spending this sort of money is likely to attach to it but there are gaping holes in the information in the review that's for sure.
To be fair the specs on Audiolab's own website are rubbish. This in no way excuses the poor review. If anything it should prompt WHF to make more effort to answer questions that potential customers should have.

It may drive all headphones but will it do equally as well with 32 ohm and 600 ohm. Can we expect a reasonable volume with 600 ohm headphones? There isn't as much as a mention of headphone amp stage and specs anywhere I've seen on the internet. WHF specs tab doesn't even mention analogue outputs (it's a dAc right).

I have no doubt that many of us would write a better (more informative) review than this. It doesn't add to the specs. If anything it puts potential customers off.

Oh, and I also find the choice of track for the review baffling. I did not listen to the classical one as it's not on Tidal but the one by The Tallest Man On Earth’s would not make my top 100 for component review.
 

Al ears

Moderator
insider9 said:
Al ears said:
muljao said:
Not with the unit itself, but no mention of the headphone amp stage, power ability, what headphones it could possibly drive, are the rca line outs line level or variable preamp type, is the Bluetooth aptx? Kind of leaves a lot of blanks
You are not wrong. I think we can assume its going to be able to drive all headphones anyone spending this sort of money is likely to attach to it but there are gaping holes in the information in the review that's for sure.
To be fair the specs on Audiolab's own website are rubbish. This in no way excuses the poor review. If anything it should prompt WHF to make more effort to answer questions that potential customers should have.

It may drive all headphones but will it do equally as well with 32 ohm and 600 ohm. Can we expect a reasonable volume with 600 ohm headphones? There isn't as much as a mention of headphone amp stage and specs anywhere I've seen on the internet. WHF specs tab doesn't even mention analogue outputs (it's a dAc right).

I have no doubt that many of us would write a better (more informative) review than this. It doesn't add to the specs. If anything it puts potential customers off.

Oh, and I also find the choice of track for the review baffling. I did not listen to the classical one as it's not on Tidal but the one by The Tallest Man On Earth’s would not make my top 100 for component review.
Figures would be nice to see for sure. I don't know many people using 600 ohm headphones but I guess this is not quite a portable DAC so someone might be trying to attach headphones like that to it I guess.

Regards tracks used for review, these are normally something the reviewer is very familiar with and that would test a certain part of the frequency spectrum, and that's it.
 

Andrewjvt

New member
Jun 18, 2014
99
1
0
Al ears said:
insider9 said:
Al ears said:
muljao said:
Not with the unit itself, but no mention of the headphone amp stage, power ability, what headphones it could possibly drive, are the rca line outs line level or variable preamp type, is the Bluetooth aptx? Kind of leaves a lot of blanks
You are not wrong. I think we can assume its going to be able to drive all headphones anyone spending this sort of money is likely to attach to it but there are gaping holes in the information in the review that's for sure.
To be fair the specs on Audiolab's own website are rubbish. This in no way excuses the poor review. If anything it should prompt WHF to make more effort to answer questions that potential customers should have.

It may drive all headphones but will it do equally as well with 32 ohm and 600 ohm. Can we expect a reasonable volume with 600 ohm headphones? There isn't as much as a mention of headphone amp stage and specs anywhere I've seen on the internet. WHF specs tab doesn't even mention analogue outputs (it's a dAc right).

I have no doubt that many of us would write a better (more informative) review than this. It doesn't add to the specs. If anything it puts potential customers off.

Oh, and I also find the choice of track for the review baffling. I did not listen to the classical one as it's not on Tidal but the one by The Tallest Man On Earth’s would not make my top 100 for component review.
Figures would be nice to see for sure. I don't know many people using 600 ohm headphones but I guess this is not quite a portable DAC so someone might be trying to attach headphones like that to it I guess.

Regards tracks used for review, these are normally something the reviewer is very familiar with and that would test a certain part of the frequency spectrum, and that's it.
Im using 600ohm beyerdynamics but i will say there is not a lot in it - right now im listening to music with my hp connected to my **** laptop and really its fine
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
739
298
5,270
Al ears said:
insider9 said:
Al ears said:
muljao said:
Not with the unit itself, but no mention of the headphone amp stage, power ability, what headphones it could possibly drive, are the rca line outs line level or variable preamp type, is the Bluetooth aptx? Kind of leaves a lot of blanks
You are not wrong. I think we can assume its going to be able to drive all headphones anyone spending this sort of money is likely to attach to it but there are gaping holes in the information in the review that's for sure.
To be fair the specs on Audiolab's own website are rubbish. This in no way excuses the poor review. If anything it should prompt WHF to make more effort to answer questions that potential customers should have.

It may drive all headphones but will it do equally as well with 32 ohm and 600 ohm. Can we expect a reasonable volume with 600 ohm headphones? There isn't as much as a mention of headphone amp stage and specs anywhere I've seen on the internet. WHF specs tab doesn't even mention analogue outputs (it's a dAc right).

I have no doubt that many of us would write a better (more informative) review than this. It doesn't add to the specs. If anything it puts potential customers off.

Oh, and I also find the choice of track for the review baffling. I did not listen to the classical one as it's not on Tidal but the one by The Tallest Man On Earth’s would not make my top 100 for component review.
Figures would be nice to see for sure. I don't know many people using 600 ohm headphones but I guess this is not quite a portable DAC so someone might be trying to attach headphones like that to it I guess.

Regards tracks used for review, these are normally something the reviewer is very familiar with and that would test a certain part of the frequency spectrum, and that's it.
I appreciate it. And I'm not saying it is a product to drive 600 ohm headphones but this only shows how poor the review is. At the price point it competes agains Mojo which is mainly a headphone dac/amp.

In regards to this particular track I found it rather poor. It felt like the reviewer was hoping the DAC wouldn't perform.
 

Al ears

Moderator
nopiano said:
luckylion100 said:
I'm sure What Hi-fi simply employ a basic template for their reviews, swap and change limited details as deemed necessary. I'm not sure if in the printed magaizine the reviewers ever put their name to their at times sub standard reviews? Is the website version the exact same as the print version?

So many times have I sought a very basic yet key piece of information as Muljao has mentioned above to find it's been omitted. Generally the +/- points are vague and conflicting.

I also believe the publication is very brand biased. One particular product recently received a terrible subjective review on What Hi-fi yet elsewhere in the Hi-Fi press received rave reviews backed by objective bench testing,

I stopped buying the magazine years ago.
As a matter of editorial policy the reviews are joint efforts of several of the team, and so never carry an author's name.

Two recent examples spring to mind - the Oppo DAC and the SME 15 - got less praise than elsewhere. I agree the summaries are sometimes unhelpful, but if you want to see sloppy editing of good content try Hi Fi World. An interesting read but shoddy layout and proofing.

BTW, I subscribe to both.
For what it's worth nopiano the review was of the SME 15A, I am sure if it was strictly on the 15 then results would have been different as most of their critique seems to be down to the Clearaudio cartridge fitted and it's interaction with the tonearm, and not the turntable itself.

Me, if I had the money, would not be fitting a Clearaudio cartridge to this deck but would be more inclined to head down the Koetsu / Kiseki or even Zyx route.....
 

nopiano

Well-known member
Feb 15, 2009
174
53
18,670
Al ears said:
nopiano said:
luckylion100 said:
I'm sure What Hi-fi simply employ a basic template for their reviews, swap and change limited details as deemed necessary. I'm not sure if in the printed magaizine the reviewers ever put their name to their at times sub standard reviews? Is the website version the exact same as the print version?

So many times have I sought a very basic yet key piece of information as Muljao has mentioned above to find it's been omitted. Generally the +/- points are vague and conflicting.

I also believe the publication is very brand biased. One particular product recently received a terrible subjective review on What Hi-fi yet elsewhere in the Hi-Fi press received rave reviews backed by objective bench testing,

I stopped buying the magazine years ago.
As a matter of editorial policy the reviews are joint efforts of several of the team, and so never carry an author's name.

Two recent examples spring to mind - the Oppo DAC and the SME 15 - got less praise than elsewhere. I agree the summaries are sometimes unhelpful, but if you want to see sloppy editing of good content try Hi Fi World. An interesting read but shoddy layout and proofing.

BTW, I subscribe to both.
For what it's worth nopiano the review was of the SME 15A, I am sure if it was strictly on the 15 then results would have been different as most of their critique seems to be down to the Clearaudio cartridge fitted and it's interaction with the tonearm, and not the turntable itself.

Me, if I had the money, would not be fitting a Clearaudio cartridge to this deck but would be more inclined to head down the Koetsu / Kiseki or even Zyx route.....
Yes, I hadn't picked up on that aspect! What I saw was HiFi+ published a review online also on 11 July, also of the 15A, and they weren't so aware of the weakness that WHF reported. (This is a long running debate, which I'm sure you'll have seen elsewhere. Is SME less distorted or coloured than rivals or does it slightly compress dynamics?). Looking more closely the other mag had a Transfiguration Proteus. I'm slightly surprised SME even supplied a cartridge, but I am assuming the new management is trying to get more publicity and reviews.

Apologies to OP for straying away from another boring DAC.
 

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