Showing 1 of 28 conversations about:
View Full Discussion I'm adding a bit to the other comments I have below. I've been playing with it a bit more this evening and finding some interesting results switching through different headphones and comparing it to my Pioneer XDP-300r for reference.
Happy to answer any other questions out there.
- Hands down it sounds great as a simple DAC/Amp without the audio processing. Nicely built with good clicky buttons. It drives my Audio Technica ATH-A900X Monitors the best with plenty of head room (nothing else I have does) and it really sounds fantastic. It's on an even playing field with the Pioneer.
- The "Effect" varies from headphone to headphone. I like it the best on my Tin Audio T2 Pros and my Sony MDR-V6's. I didn't like it as much on the Audio Technicas or my Grados. I'm curios to see how it will sound with the Tin Audio T3's that I am awaiting. If they come in soon I'll update. And anyone who says the T2's lack bass needs to hear them with this amp.
- Just for fun I tried it on a pair of Klipsch and Ultimate Ears Earbuds I had sitting in the drawer. The SxFi just reinforced why they were sitting in the drawer (ie not so fun...). The headphones don't sound good with or without the effect. So in other words, they aren't going to make inadequate headphone sound better.
- The "Effect" sounds fantastic with movies. That's something else to try out once you have the amp.
- I was tempted to make some sweeping generalization about it [the Effect] sounding better with certain types of music, but that isn't true. It's not event true about tracks from the same artist. It very much comes down to the recording. I think recordings with a wide presence don't really benefit from the Effect, but those that are more narrow, more centralized in your head (or even mono) benefit from the Effect.
I agree with the effect being dependent on headphones. I think it sounds fairly decent on my 6xx but I can't say I like it at all on my Sennheiser Momentum(old wired ver) or my Sony WH1000XM2.
Do you have a PS4 or Switch? I am wondering how well the surround processing works for pinpointing directional sounds with those devices.
I'll check the switch this evening...
I've used it on the Nintendo Switch and it tries to make it sound like you're listening to two speakers in front of you if you have the effect on. This is due to the fact you can't get surround sound(ie 7.1/5.1) over USB on either the PS4 or Switch. You'd only be able to get 5.1/7.1 virtual surround on a SXFI from a PC.
The only headphones I know of that can get virtual surround from the Nintendo Switch is the old Sony MDR-HW700DS. The reason for this is because of the Switch only supporting uncompressed 5.1 which isn't supported over optical, which is what most virtual surround devices for consoles use. PS4 does support 5.1 dolby digital that you can then send over optical, and for that situation you'd be better off going for something like the SoundblasterX g6 or the Astro Mixamp.
Yeah. I have the Astro MixAmp with the Sennheiser PC37X. Good setup. The marketing and industry ravings about this thing made it sound like it would be substantially better.
The MixAmp works pretty good for 5.1 surround and locating enemies, but it really isn't a great amp, and when you play music you really notice how bloated the sound is
I used to use the Astro Mixamp before for gaming and I think the Dolby Headphones virtual surround is good for that(and movies to be fair) but yeah I wouldn't use it for music, even if you turn off the DH it still leaves a lot to be desired. I also found it had a high noise floor too, causing "hissing" on some of my more sensitive headphones.
Currently I'm using the SoundblasterX G6 instead and I think that has a much better dac/amp in it. SBX is a bit less reverby over dolby headphones too which may be good or bad depending on taste. It also has the option to output the audio via optical so you can use your own dac/amp. I actually have it plugged into a Modi3/Magni3 via optical as I already owned them before I bought the g6.
With regards to the SXFI, they are releasing a TV version at some point. I believe that hooks up via HDMI and you can use this amp with it to be able to use it with full surround on other devices besides pc.
Interesting to hear this as generally the sentiment is that the amp on a hardware level is quite good. What do you mean by bloated? Is that with tech on or off? Or just sound signature. Please note there's no snark here, I'm genuinely interested in your take on this as I haven't heard this comment often from people who are using or have used the amp.
The philosophy of the product was to build an EXCELLENT mini AMP / DAC first and then add in our tech. If we start with bad audio output, no amount of tech makes up for that. So we avoided that completely so we could give the SuperXfi tech the best chance to succeed.
We're constantly adding headphones to the optimization list. I'll make sure the models you note here are delivered to the team for testing / certification / optimization.
Is the middle button only play/pause or can you use it to change tracks?
You can use it to advance tracks with two clicks and skip back with 3 clicks.
Crazy how this isn't documented or advertised. One of my main issues with using a smartphone for a DAP is the lack of physical controls to change tracks. This changes the sxfi from a curiosity to a serious contender. Thanks!
Yeah, I didn't know either, literally just tried it today (in response to your question).
Also, another item of note, the volume control is independent of the device volume (at least on the 3 devices I've tried it with). I generally turn up the device volume all of the way and control volume adjustments on the DAC. The device will remember the last volume set, however if you use an app to control the DAC (the SxFi app will ask for control, so will the Onkyo HF Player App I use) the volume will go to full on both the DAC and the Device when you first plug it in and allow the app control - just a warning if using IEMs.
Actually, I'll make sure this is added to the faq and easier to find info wise. Definitely agree we could have done a better job noting this.
I use the Onkyo HF Player as well. On my my device it manages to not go to full volume on the device when I let the app take control, though the first time I used the app this was definitely the case. And if I turn up the volume on the device, it instantly pumps up the volume to full on the DAC with each device volume press but only when I use the Onkyo player of SXFI app, not the case with any other app (not taking control of the app). Just an odd thing. For the most part I been able to avoid blasting at full volume.
Still really enjoying the DAC and I've been able to tweak the sound profile to something that works with a variety of my headphones: Hifiman - Ananda (which I don't own).