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Article: Part 2: RAAL-requisite SR1a Earfield Headphone Monitor & HSA-1b Headphone & Speaker Amplifier Review


austinpop
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Hi @austinpop as usual an excellent review, I really appreciate your opinion.

Question since you are also very knowledgeable with Euphony. I am interested in EQing my Raal headphone but I do not have HQP nor Roon. Would it be possible for HQP embedded in Euphony to use @mitchco’s convolution filters? 
Also I am very tempted to buy the HSA1-b and be done with the switchable speaker/Raal resistor box, with this solution both suffer. I believe @The Computer Audiophile mentioned that Raal is busy developing a tube based amplifier for the Raal so I am not sure if I should wait for that, might be a while. Have you heard anything about that?

Meitner ma1 v2 dac,  Sovereign preamp and power amp,

DIY speakers with scan speak illuminator drivers.

Raal SR1a

Under development:

NUC7i7dnbe, Euphony Stylus, Qobuz.

Modded Buffalo-fiber-EtherRegen, DC3- Isoregen, Lush^2

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4 minutes ago, RickyV said:

Would it be possible for HQP embedded in Euphony to use @mitchco’s convolution filters? 

 

Yes.

 

 

4 minutes ago, RickyV said:

I believe @The Computer Audiophile mentioned that Raal is busy developing a tube based amplifier for the Raal so I am not sure if I should wait for that, might be a while. Have you heard anything about that?

 

Supposed to be demonstrated at the Head-Fi show in Southern California this year. 

Founder of Audiophile Style

Announcing The Audiophile Style Podcast

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9 minutes ago, RickyV said:

Hi @austinpop as usual an excellent review, I really appreciate your opinion.

Question since you are also very knowledgeable with Euphony. I am interested in EQing my Raal headphone but I do not have HQP nor Roon. Would it be possible for HQP embedded in Euphony to use @mitchco’s convolution filters? 

 

While I have not actually gone through these steps myself, as I no longer use Euphony actively, I don't see why not. While the Euphony web app exposes some slected HQP settings, your best bet is to access the HQP embedded server directly via its web UI at http://<ip address>:8088 Check the Euphony docs (or contact Zeljko) for the default credentials. You should then be able to access the convolution settings and load Mitch's filters.

 

9 minutes ago, RickyV said:

Also I am very tempted to buy the HSA1-b and be done with the switchable speaker/Raal resistor box, with this solution both suffer. I believe @The Computer Audiophile mentioned that Raal is busy developing a tube based amplifier for the Raal so I am not sure if I should wait for that, might be a while. Have you heard anything about that?

 

As Chris said, they plan to announce and demo at the CanJam SoCal in Irvine, CA in a couple weeks. I'm very curious too!

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15 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Yes


Ooh wow that is fantastic news, thanks. I didn’t expect that.

 

15 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Supposed to be demonstrated at the Head-Fi show in Southern California this year. 


Might you have an educated guess as to when it will be for sale, approximately.

Meitner ma1 v2 dac,  Sovereign preamp and power amp,

DIY speakers with scan speak illuminator drivers.

Raal SR1a

Under development:

NUC7i7dnbe, Euphony Stylus, Qobuz.

Modded Buffalo-fiber-EtherRegen, DC3- Isoregen, Lush^2

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Great review Rajiv! Thanks! 

I find it quite interesting that while you heard notable differences between the various headphones (and amps) you used, no one totally in every respect blew away the others. This is a tribute to the excellence of all the gear (headphones and amps) at the highend now! 

 

 

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3 hours ago, RichardSF said:

@austinpop(or anybody else), how is the HSA1-b as a speaker amp? The cost of the HSA1-b is out of reach for many, but it might be justified for some if it can also double as an audiophile amp for a nearfield or small room system.


I lack data to answer that question. I could not test this use case. I’m hoping others who have can/will comment.

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14 hours ago, happybob said:

Great review Rajiv! Thanks! 

I find it quite interesting that while you heard notable differences between the various headphones (and amps) you used, no one totally in every respect blew away the others. This is a tribute to the excellence of all the gear (headphones and amps) at the highend now! 

 

 

 

Very true, happybob! We are now at a state of the art where TOTL headphones are all so good, there are no absolute winners or losers. It's all about synergy — with your system, with your ears, and with your preferences.

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I have got the filters loaded and went straight for the FS3 filters, had start somewhere. As I am unfamiliar with HQplayer I have set it to, Upsampling mode: PCM, PCM resampling filter: none and PCM resampling noise shaper: none. Done this also because I wanted to switch between Euphony Stylus with and without HQplayer so between no filter and FS3 filter. Correct me if I am doing something wrong.

So far the FS3 filter seems easier on the hears in the treble region and has overall a more relaxed presentation. The bass Indeed seem to go deeper.


I have to test and experiment a little more Euphony settings and way to much HQplayer settings. If anyone has some good suggestions with HQplayer please let me know. 
So far a really nice addition to the Raal sr1a.

Meitner ma1 v2 dac,  Sovereign preamp and power amp,

DIY speakers with scan speak illuminator drivers.

Raal SR1a

Under development:

NUC7i7dnbe, Euphony Stylus, Qobuz.

Modded Buffalo-fiber-EtherRegen, DC3- Isoregen, Lush^2

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8 hours ago, RickyV said:

As I am unfamiliar with HQplayer I have set it to, Upsampling mode: PCM, PCM resampling filter: none and PCM resampling noise shaper: none. Done this also because I wanted to switch between Euphony Stylus with and without HQplayer so between no filter and FS3 filter.


Hmm, that’s actually a good point to seek clarification. So you want to do EQ but without upsampling? How does one use HQP for just convolution?


Perhaps @The Computer Audiophile and/or @Miska can clarify.

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1 hour ago, austinpop said:


Hmm, that’s actually a good point to seek clarification. So you want to do EQ but without upsampling? How does one use HQP for just convolution?


Perhaps @The Computer Audiophile and/or @Miska can clarify.


no I do upsample to 353khz in pcm because to my logic my DAC can do  the rest of the upsampling better, 512 dsd. To much strain on my NUC too.
And an other thing is because I use speakers and the headphones i am going to use stylus without HQplayer so without filters for my speakers and stylus with HQplayer with convolution filters for the raal. 

Meitner ma1 v2 dac,  Sovereign preamp and power amp,

DIY speakers with scan speak illuminator drivers.

Raal SR1a

Under development:

NUC7i7dnbe, Euphony Stylus, Qobuz.

Modded Buffalo-fiber-EtherRegen, DC3- Isoregen, Lush^2

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13 hours ago, RickyV said:

no I do upsample to 353khz in pcm because to my logic my DAC can do  the rest of the upsampling better, 512 dsd. To much strain on my NUC too.

 

I doubt there are DACs that have the amount of DSP power available to do that. Even NUC has more CPU power than any DAC I'm aware of.

 

Quote

And an other thing is because I use speakers and the headphones i am going to use stylus without HQplayer so without filters for my speakers and stylus with HQplayer with convolution filters for the raal. 

 

You can easily have two matrix profiles and then switch between those, even on the fly. You just need to perform convolution using the matrix pipeline processor, instead of the simple convolution engine.

 

Note that when you use any DSP, like convolution, you must use dither or noise/shaper for PCM outputs. Otherwise you have a distortion generator. You will also benefit from running upsampling at the same time, as you get increased headroom. You gain one bit worth every time you double the sampling rate (flat dithers like TPDF), and more if you use noise-shaper.

 

Signalyst - Developer of HQPlayer

Pulse & Fidelity - Software Defined Amplifiers

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21 minutes ago, Miska said:

I doubt there are DACs that have the amount of DSP power available to do that. Even NUC has more CPU power than any DAC I'm aware of.

 

???

 

MDAT™: 8x DSD upsampling 

From there, the signal goes straight into the newly updated Meitner Digital Audio Translator (MDAT2™) which upsamples digital audio to DSD512/8xDSD, eight times the SACD standard sampling rate.

 

23 minutes ago, Miska said:

 

Note that when you use any DSP, like convolution, you must use dither or noise/shaper for PCM outputs. Otherwise you have a distortion generator. You will also benefit from running upsampling at the same time, as you get increased headroom. You gain one bit worth every time you double the sampling rate (flat dithers like TPDF), and more if you use noise-shaper.


So these setting are no good then for the use with convolution filters?

BAACA95D-A5BC-449F-B546-3E1F1668063D.thumb.png.a227837093bab53ea1bed1d10f03f431.png

 

I am new to HQplayer so for now I would just like to upsample in PCM to 353khz.

And I need to set dither or PCM resampling noise filter. Is it easier to do this in the HQplayer UI?

 

Meitner ma1 v2 dac,  Sovereign preamp and power amp,

DIY speakers with scan speak illuminator drivers.

Raal SR1a

Under development:

NUC7i7dnbe, Euphony Stylus, Qobuz.

Modded Buffalo-fiber-EtherRegen, DC3- Isoregen, Lush^2

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1 hour ago, RickyV said:

MDAT™: 8x DSD upsampling 

From there, the signal goes straight into the newly updated Meitner Digital Audio Translator (MDAT2™) which upsamples digital audio to DSD512/8xDSD, eight times the SACD standard sampling rate.

 

Yeah, HQPlayer can do that too, with advanced modulators and run real full 512x digital filters on the way. You can also do DSD1024 the same way.

 

1 hour ago, RickyV said:

So these setting are no good then for the use with convolution filters?

 

You need to ask Euphony guys, I don't recognize that GUI stuff. I only know HQPlayer's GUI.

 

1 hour ago, RickyV said:

I am new to HQplayer so for now I would just like to upsample in PCM to 353khz.

And I need to set dither or PCM resampling noise filter. Is it easier to do this in the HQplayer UI?

 

You need to set the upsampling filter and a dither/noise-shaper of you choice. In HQPlayer GUI there's the Help-link in top-right corner that contains some information that likely is helpful.

 

Signalyst - Developer of HQPlayer

Pulse & Fidelity - Software Defined Amplifiers

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On 9/13/2021 at 11:06 PM, austinpop said:

As Chris said, they plan to announce and demo at the CanJam SoCal in Irvine, CA in a couple weeks. I'm very curious too!


Found this on head-fi, the new raal tube amplifier.

2917C62C-5BD7-40F9-9142-6AC79A66FF46.jpeg.3afc70d29ea55317773752fd54db3601.jpeg

 

Couldn’t find much more on how it sounds with the sr1a

Meitner ma1 v2 dac,  Sovereign preamp and power amp,

DIY speakers with scan speak illuminator drivers.

Raal SR1a

Under development:

NUC7i7dnbe, Euphony Stylus, Qobuz.

Modded Buffalo-fiber-EtherRegen, DC3- Isoregen, Lush^2

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