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Audio Accessory Reviews

OPPO HA-2 DAC and Headphone Amplifier Review

OPPOOPPO has just released the HA-2 DAC and Headphone amplifier. It is sized to use with your smart phone's digital output using a USB-micro-to-USB-micro cable. With a Sabre Mobile DAC, the HA-2 will decode up to 32/384 PCM and DSD256 music stored on your phone (you will need a downloadable app). The HA-2 plays high resolution music with proper transients that might otherwise be lost on the inexpensive DACs that are native to the smart phones.


RBH EP-SB Bluetooth Earbuds Review

RBH EP-SB Bluetooth Earphones Review

The RBH EP-SB is a well-designed wireless earbud featuring both excellent fit and top notch sound quality. The battery life is solid and more than enough for a day of casual listening or long workouts. The internal amp provides plenty of volume, helped in part to the excellent seal provided by the included Comply foam tips.


Wireworld Mini-Eclipse 7 Speaker Cables Review

WireworldWireworld's new Eclipse Series 7 cables depart from previous designs in that the conductors are arranged in a helix as compared to a simple spiral. I tested the Mini-Eclipse 7 in 25 foot lengths to power the rear speakers in my home theater. How did they compare to generic cables? Read our review to discover.


Ultimate Ears 18 Pro Custom In-Ear Monitors (Earbuds) Review

Ultimate Ears 18 Pro Custom In Ear Monitors Review

When Ultimate Ears Custom contacted me about a meeting at the 2014 New York Audio Show, I said: “Absolutely”! I had a terrific experience reviewing the entry level Ultimate Ears 4 Pro Custom In Ear Monitors CEM and was eager to hear what was new in the world of custom audio.


Bryston BUC-1 USB Converter Review

BUC-1Modern DACs have asynchronous USB inputs to connect your computer for playing music files. This results in the bitstream being re-clocked to the outboard DAC's own clock, which is much more accurate than a computer's digital clock. However, older DACs, even expensive ones, don't have asynchronous USB inputs. The Bryston BUC-1 solves this by having a USB input for connection to your computer, and an accurately re-clocked digital output that can be connected to your old, and perhaps very expensive, DAC, giving you the essential asynchronous input.


Sony MDR-Z7 Headphones and PHA-3 Portable DAC and Headphone Amp Review

Sony MDR-Z7 Headphones and PHA-3 Portable DAC and Headphone Amp ReviewSony continues to release lots of new products bearing the “HI-Res Audio” logo. This review focuses on three of these products - the Sony MDR-Z7 Headphones, the Sony PHA-3 battery powered DAC/headphone amp and the Kimber Kable MUC-B20BL1 balanced headphone cable.


HiFiMAN HE-400i Planar Magnetic Over-the-Ear Headphones Review

HiFiMAN HE-400i Planar Magnetic Headphones Review

The HiFiMAN HE-400i is an updated version of their entry model HE-400 featuring the new design changes introduced in the terrific HE-560 planar magnetic headphones. Believe it or not, at $499 the HE-400i is an absolute steal in the headphone world. Planar magnetic designs are often tricky, with drivers that require strong housings for the magnets which add extra weight along with needing plenty of wattage to drive. HiFiMAN has successfully solved both of these drawbacks with the HE-400i. They are easy to drive, light, and incredibly comfortable and that’s just the icing on the cake. These bring phenomenal tonal quality, clarity, and depth to the music they deliver.


Burson Conductor Virtuoso USB DAC, Preamplifier, and Headphone Amplifier Review

Burson Conductor Virtuoso USB DAC, Preamplifier, and Headphone AmplifierBurson Audio, based in Australia, markets power amplifiers and headphone amplifiers, mostly the latter. Their newest model is the Conductor Virtuoso. Its musicality amazed me.


HiFiMAN HE-560 Planar Magnetic Over-the-Ear Headphones Review

HiFiMAN HE-560 Planar Magnetic Headphone Review

The newest planar magnetic headphones from HiFiMAN ushers in a new generation of design. A brand new single-sided driver allows for better imaging and sounds along with significant weight savings. Considerable thought has gone into the ergonomics of the new headphone and that has lead HiFiMAN to create the most comfortable over the ear headphone that I have had the pleasure to wear. Oh and they sound simply brilliant. A great buy in today’s bustling headphone market.


Tidal Music Streaming Service Review

Tidal Music Streaming Service ReviewTidal Music Streaming Service is the first CD quality (1411 kbps) music streaming service offered in the U.S. With over 25 million tracks in their catalog, they offer a wide variety of musical genres, in addition to curated Playlists and Music Editorials. For the video minded, they also include a catalog of 75,000 music videos, most of which are in HD resolution.


NAD D 1050 USB DAC Review

NAD D 1050 USB DAC ReviewThe NAD D1050 is a full-featured DAC with high resolution USB audio support. Plenty of inputs with two each of optical and coax make this a versatile DAC. The NAD D1050 even features both RCA and balanced stereo output. Enjoy neutral, spacious sound with all the intricate details of 24bit/192kHz material from the NAD D1050.