Jump to content
IGNORED

Just received Matrix Mini-i Dac / HeadPhone amp


Guest WATERLOGIC
 Share

Recommended Posts

Guest WATERLOGIC

It took 20 days to arrive from Hong Kong.

 

First impression :

 

Unhooked Bel canto Dac 3 and hooked up this baby :

 

http://cgi.ebay.com/Matrix-mini-i-24-192-Balanced-DAC-Headphone-Amp/350235725907

 

MacMini -> M2tech hiFace->Matrix Mini-i BNC-in-> RCA to Bedini pre .

 

It sounds soo good (better then Bel Canto? - I still can not believe is it possible ? ).

No break in time ( for those who believe braking in should make a difference - I do not) no fancy cabling.

 

I will come back further after I try the headphone amp.

 

Cheers !

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Headphones are my thing an hearing any news about a hardware piece which I've not heard is great. I've never owned better than Meier's high end headphone amps, but currently have an Einar Sound VC-01i and Woo Audio W3 and loads of portable amps.

 

What headphones do you own? Mine are: FitEar 333, BeyerDynamic DT880 ? balanced, Ultrasone DJ1Pro, Jerry Harvey JH13Pro and many more.

 

TouchMyApps headphones reviews

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest WATERLOGIC

I used to have Beyerdynamic 990 edition and AKG K702 . I liked them both but sold them few weeks ago after listening to Sennheiser HD 800. This is a totally different experience . This cans are just increadible.

Headphones were never my thing but I tend to change my mind after HD 800 experience.

HP amp I use for few months now is "Lehmann audio black cube linear". If you need a really capable amp for your cans you should check this one out.

 

As to Matrix Mini-i -> I have to say this is the most welcome surprise since I am doing computer music.

I strongly recommend this baby ( I am selling my Bel Canto Dac III !! - so good is this little chinese Matrix box...) the optical in also supports 24/192 as long as your comp can do. I am using M2tech Hiface with it, though (BNC) and what comes out is unbelievable !

I think everybody should check Matrix with Hiface before burning money for fancy stuff (like Weiss or some other ridiculously priced stuff).

 

So far the BIGGEST BANG for the BUCK I have seen (240 Euro + 99 Euro for Hiface = 339 Euros !) and this is not all. You get also a very nice HP amp with it ! Although it is no match for "Lehmann audio black cube linear" it comes very very close. Listening to HD 800 through it is an enjoyable and effortless experience ...

 

Again - no fancy cabling used - standard Monster stuff (coax cable cca 30 Euros).

 

Cheers !

 

 

WL

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

How did you like that combo? iI'm kicking around the idea of a secondary headphone system feeding my AIF files to an Airport Express and then the optical out to a DAC/Headphone amp combo. A pair of AKG 701s would be just one of the headphones I'd be throwing at it.

 

Bill

 

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

Mac Mini->Roon + Tidal->KEF LS50W

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest WATERLOGIC

I could not try the AKG K702 with the Matrix, because I sold them after buying Sennheiser HD800 and only received Matrix after that.

However Matrix manual recommends using cans upto 300 ohm impedance . (HD800 are 300 ohms and they are driven efortlessly).

 

Correct me if I am wrong K702 should be sth. between 60 to 70 ohms . If correct, Matrix should play them even much louder and I can not think why K702 should not swing (they are great cans !) .

I'll see if I can borrow them from somebody to try them for you.

 

regards

 

WL

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest WATERLOGIC

OPTICAL: Shielded/enclosed optical input Sampling Rate: 44.1kHz ~192kHz

BNC : Standard BNC 75 ohm Sampling Rate: 44.1kHz ~192kHz

USB r: Standard USB-B connector Sampling Rate: 44.1kHz ~48kHz

AES/EBU: Standard XLR interface Sampling Rate: 44.1kHz ~192kHz

 

it even has coax out (pass through)

 

if you entrust me your email - I will send you the whole manual (pdf) .

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Hi Waterlogic!

 

I tried to click your name to see if there are any options for me to send you a PM for my email but apparantly I kept getting access denied. :(

 

I'm interested to have a copy or a link to the manual as well as I've recently been introduced to this DAC as a possible contender for my first audio setup. :P

 

I intend to use them with a pair of Yamaha HS80M or Fostex PM1 (not decided yet as I've yet to hear the PM1) and a Senn. HD555. Do let me know your views about this configuration as well.

 

As for a transport from my PC to the DAC, I'm thinking of possibly adding in the BNC version of the Hiface into the mix. My laptop would be using the spare USB port as a secondary rig.

 

If you can, do drop me a PM or let me know if I should leave my email/MSN address here.

 

My rig is not an oil rig. I sometimes wish it was.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

He is coming out, possibly, w/ a 96kHz USB version soon. See Head-Fi.

 

DIGITAL: Windows 7 x64 JRMC19 >Adnaco S3B fiber over USB (battery power)> Auralic Vega > Tortuga LDR custom LPSU > Zu Union Cubes + Deep Hemp Sub

 

ANALOG: PTP Audio Solid 9 > Audiomods Series V > Audio Technica Art-7 MC > Allnic H1201 > Tortuga LDR > Zu Union Cubes + Deep Hemp Sub

 

ACCESSORIES: PlatterSpeed, BlackCat cables, Antipodes Cables, Huffman Cables, Feickert Protracter, OMA Graphite mat, JRemote

Link to comment
Share on other sites

OK. So some googling threw up the manual (or so I think). I hope it's the same one - a 9-page PDF brief as opposed to big, fat manuals I'm used to seeing for ther gadgets (not audio).

 

Some deeper searching also threw up something else too. Amongst other things, I saw that the USB mode seems to be only capable of working in 48KHz for some reason. Can you help verify that?

 

Also, I'm considering this guy against the RME Hammerfall HDSP-9632 as well as (although there is a very high chance of it being dropped out) Audio-Gd's FUN DAC/Headamp/Pre. Of which, I intend to link the FUN and the MMi up to my main rig with an appropriate version of the M2T, the FUN would also need to have an extra RCA to XLR convertor. If I'm going with the RME, I would use the optional breakout leads for headphone and XLR-out to the monitors. I understand it's a bit of an unfair comparison except only on price point. But the thing is, which would you recommend in this case?

 

My rig is not an oil rig. I sometimes wish it was.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Good to hear that. Thank goodness I'm in no rush to get my new rig.

 

That said, I'm not as keen on USB for both MMi I and MMi II (Matrix Reloaded may be too cheesy, maybe Matrix Deux....LOL). But it's still good to know that the backup connection is getting an upgrade.

 

I'm still rather torn between inboard soundcard (Hammerfall) vs outboard DAC, though. *shrugs*

 

My rig is not an oil rig. I sometimes wish it was.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 months later...

"I think everybody should check Matrix with Hiface before burning money for fancy stuff (like Weiss or some other ridiculously priced stuff"

 

The Matrix is an excellent DAC at the price, But it does not come close to my Weiss DAC2 in any area. I bought the matrix to replace my Cambridge DacMagic on my PC system. (Dacmagic was being moved to bathroom system)

 

PC > DacMagic > BiAmp Topping TP10's > B&W 601S2.

 

As it turned out the Matrix is going into the bathroom system as it's sound is more suited to the type of music I listen too while soaking away the stresses of the day. It's more analogue sounding than the DacMagic but not as detailed or punchy. My findings are very similar to the conclusions found in this review :-

 

http://www.headfonia.com/matrix-mini-i-balanced-dac/3/

 

I did try the matrix in my main system as I had done with DacMagic before it. It did not take a long listening session or any straining to realise that the Weiss DAC2 is the superior DAC in every aspect. However it is in some respects a superior DAC to my old Musical Fidelity TriVista DAC which even second hand cost me three times the price of the Matrix. Just shows how technology moves on.

 

 

 

Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

 

Even giant killers can't kill some really big giants!

 

I would certainly hope the Weiss DAC...that costs literally 10x as much would sound better.

 

The fact that you even mention them in the same review is a little odd, unless you feel the need to let people know you own a Weiss DAC2.

 

The DacMagic costs 50% more than the Matrix, has no headphone amp yet some prefer the Matrix.

Personally, I don't think the Matrix can be beat for the money (and maybe twice as much) but I haven't heard every DAC under $600.

 

I plan on comparing the Matrix to the DacMagic and the Little Dot Dac_I in a few weeks and will try to remember to post my impressions here.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hellenback did you see the speech marks at the opening of my post? Just in case you are unaware this indicates I was quoting a previous poster, who expressed the opinion that the Martix was better than the the "ridiculously overpriced Weiss' (that was a quote as well). As i understand one of the purposes of this forum is for lovers of music to help each to assemble the best systems that they can irrespective of budget. It would have been remiss of me not to balance the previous posters comment with my own opinion based on actually owning both pieces of equipment.

Having read back through this topic it would appear that the earlier posts are missing and that the topic has been truncated. Despite this I feel your comment "The fact that you even mention them in the same review is a little odd, unless you feel the need to let people know you own a Weiss DAC2" was extremely insulting and ill-mannered and certainly not in the spirit of this forum. Suffice it to say I expect an apology.

 

I bought my DACmagic from richer sounds for £219 and the Matrix online for a tad under £200, so here in the UK at least they are virtually the same price.

 

Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm sorry to offend with my comment.

 

I only realized you were quoting someone's previous post later when I re-read the post. When I did re-read it, it was too late to edit (at least I couldn't see an edit selection at the time). It is my opinion that the previous poster just meant that the diminishing return on a Weiss DAC2 was not worth it to him. To each their own within their means.

 

I'm not used to a forum where you cannot modify/delete/edit a post later so it was there and I couldn't do anything about it.

 

I think your title "no giant killer" is a bit misleading as the Matrix punches far above it's weight/cost. Someone else who owned a Bel Canto posted they could not distinguish a difference between it and the Matrix.

I personally think that's what makes a "giant killer" but it is an overused (and often misused) phrase.

 

Just FYI the DacMagic in Canada is $500 (plus 13% tax in Ontario) The Matrix is $320 to the door.

 

$320 + 50% = $480 so I wasn't exaggerating

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for apology it is greatly appreciated and your quite right to point out that "Giant killer" could be misleading. I was simply concerned that someone may have read the earlier post and prematurely smashed open the piggy bank to go out and buy a Matrix instead of waiting till they could buy a Weiss or similar. After all it was the Weiss name that was used in the context of "ridiculously over priced".

 

I was aware that The DacMagic cost more in other countries I have seen it sold on Ebay for a price considerably higher than it's UK retail price, which has gone up £10 since i bought mine. In a shoot-out the matrix wins on value, it's better looking, has a cleaner interface and a big plus is no nasty wall wart as found on the DacMagic.(the DacMagic Wall Wart was subject to a product recall last year) As regards sound I think it comes down to preference, my initial impressions where very similar to those expressed in the link i supplied in the previous post. I have not had an opportunity to thoroughly compare the two so won't comment further.

 

I now have the Matrix paired up with a TA2020 Tri path amp form Arjen Helder (my first foray into DIY) and I must say i am delighted with the result, it's certainly a lot of bang for buck.

 

Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The Tri-path amp sounds interesting.

 

I would very much like to get into a little DIY if only to construct good cables at a decent price. I'd have to make some room in a crowded apartment but I think it would be very rewarding.

 

Thanks for your comments and impressions.

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi there everyone, was wondering if anyone has tried the DAC with an optical toslink 24/192 signal from Mac Mini and iTunes, and high resolution files. Does the display, on the top, show the sample rate ?

 

Tnks b4hands,

 

ciampa.

 

ciampa.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You can't do 24/192 optical from the MacMini (under OS X)...

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes... USB (or FireWire) to SPDIF (or a suitable DAC) is the way to get 24/192 from a MacMini.

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 5 months later...

Hi,

 

sorry to hijack this old post. I am new to the "Computer Audio Hifi", and I am a bit puzzled. The Matrix mini has USB-in, so why would you use the Hiface as USB2BNC? Is it because the Matrix mini does not support 24/192 over USB? I have only 16/44 Music, so I wonder if the Hiface is necessary, or if I could just use the Matrix mini.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@Pintu

 

If you are listening only to 44.1/16 files then the hi-face would not be of much use to you.

 

Some hear the coax/bnc input as better than usb even with standard 44.1/16 bit resolution so you might want to get a less expensive usb -> bnc(or rca) converter.

 

That way if you do get some hi-res music files you'll be able to hear them in all their glory!

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share



×
×
  • Create New...