Sep 18, 20179552 views

Audiophile Custom Products DAC & Amp Update 9/18/2017

Hey Everybody,
UPDATES about our new Amp & DAC line as of 9/18/2017.
Some good news…we are working to add the 3.5mm output to the SDAC in the CTH+SDAC. The 3.5mm output will be next to the microUSB input jack. You may use a 3.5mm to RCA cable for output. So, there is no pass-through on the CTH+SDAC but you can now get a line-out from the SDAC.
Massdrop O2+SDAC
We’re announcing this combo today and launching on 9/21 for 10 days. Just like the previous O2+ODAC that we used to sell, we’ll have this in the same chassis as before.
The line-up that is currently available:
· Massdrop x Grace Design Standard DAC
· Massdrop O2+SDAC
· Massdrop x Cavalli Tube Hybrid
· Massdrop CTH+SDAC
· Massdrop x Cavalli Liquid Carbon X
Rest of the year:
· Massdrop LCX+SDAC is in progress but not yet developed. (No guarantees, hopefully in 2017.)
· No other Cavalli amps planned in 2017.
· Massdrop Objective 2 amplifier in 2017.
· Liquid Crimson not planned for 2017, but thank you for the requests.
· Might be another amp or two this year but not a Cavalli.
When we kicked things off with the Massdrop x Cavalli Tube Hybrid, we hinted at stackability and ventilation for digital combos. We’ve been working on these products as quickly as possible to finish everything before the Chinese New Year break. As timing turned out, we’ll have 5 overlapping products available this month plus we allowed movement to one of these new products if you purchased the CTH.
With our platform and model…we develop the products and then close the drops to handle the production. In order to do this as quickly as possible, we’ll be closing the above drops on 9/30/2017 and getting to work building them. The goals for this line-up are simple. To bring the community the best designs as affordably as possible.
For various reasons, we’ll not always telegraph what we’re up to…but this quantity of launches in a short period of time leads us to share what are trying to accomplish and try to make it a bit easier for you. Hope you enjoy the new choices!
silverak, TaylorD, and 53 others

I also noticed that i am unable to drive the SDAC part of the amp with my iPhone 7+ nor my iPad, i get a message saying the output current not enough to feed the device attached (DAC) so i am using an iFi iUSB3.0 micro to that effect. This as information purposes only I will try next week with an INNUOS Streamer, and see if that has enough power to drive the DAC.
Hey Cee-Tee, I bought the CTH+S a few days ago and in the process of burning it in properly. i noticed that my fairly easy to drive HifiMan Sundara is not properly driven by this amp, the amp sounds very good to tone, clarity, the mids are very natural, liquid even, the 6922 does a great job at that. Also the tube socket seems incredibly tense and tight, to the point one can easity bend a tube pin just by putting it in, also noticed that i need to excert a fairly high amount of pressure to have the tube seat in the tube socket. Volume seems adequate at 75 to 100% of volume pot, but you can tell is not being properly driven for an even frequency range, its forcing the amp and stressing it. Any suggestions? Could i have a faulty unit?
Hi Gonza, In thinking about your insertion of the tube into the socket, I am wondering if your pins are in the metal bracket holes or if they may have somehow gotten lodged between the metal bracket and the ceramic insulator. It should be a bit firm for good connection but not as difficult as your description seems to suggest... 75-100% of the volume pot for Sundara seems like a lot. When you say it does not have an even frequency range, has the tonality of the headphone changed? If the amp is "stressed" and at the limits, it should be tripping protective circuitry and turning the LED red. We may need to know more and then I can ask Alex for some thoughts or see what other information is needed to troubleshoot. Have you used with any other headphones? Do any other headphones require the volume pot to be so high on the dial? Sensitivity is 94dB for the headphones, do you think you prefer to listen louder than others or not that loud?
Thanks Cee_Tee for the prompt reply; about the volume, the amps seems very stressed when trying to drive the Sundara properly, no red lights no porotection, units doesn't even get passing warm, not hot at all . . . i can even touch the tube for about 6 to 10 seconds while operating for over an hour. About the pin tube socket force: i ahve been a tube fan for over 20 years, had more than my share of tubed preamps, DAC's, Amplifiers Integrated. an avid tube roller and used to the normal force especially in a new components with new sockets, this is a lot more force than i'm used to use, also i'm a little scared of tube rolling for this single 6922 as some f my 6922 types are very valuable, i have some pairs of CCA's, Amperex WHite Label 7308's and 6922's. Also some real bugle boy 6DJ8's, you understand . . . I can easily drive the Sundara with the headphone amp jack out of a iFi stereo 50 (on loan from a friend), and when reading the reviews of many people recommending the CTH+S for the Senn's HD650 and teh drops' own HD6XX, i've figured SUndaras 37 Ohm and 94dB/mW spec should be a walk in the park . . . boy I was wrong. I need some help and don't know where to go, can you please point me in the right direction? I simply can't use this amp like that. Thanks for the help, Sincerely; Gonzalo
Would be nice to get an update. I'm in the market for an amp/dac
@CEE_TEE how about an update to this custom DACs and Amps post? ;-)
can someone write a post on how / which to choose for dummy?
I understand the balanced out on the CTH is single ended. But will there be a "balance" version on the product road map? (Like the xDuoo TA-20 balanced headphone amp) I don't notice much of these types of amps on the market
can i still order the Massdrop x Cavalli Tube Hybrid (without the sdac)?
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no, since the drop is over. Same as if I canceled a drop after emailing customer service. They always make more than anticipated in case of defects and such but that doesn't free stock, because the stock isn't manufactured yet.
I have a CTH That I am likely to cancel. If you want to buy my spot, we can figure out a way to do that between us.
I was wondering if the LCX+SDAC will retain all of its inputs and outputs from the standard LCX, and how would the input selection work with these multiple inputs and SDAC?
Do you have any plan to work with Meridian?
I would be happy to see MQA capable Meridian Explorer 2 + O2 / CTH /LC combo (s)
Question about the LCX. Is it a Class A solid state?
I'm in for the CTH but I'm wondering if I should go with the Magni 3 instead. Either way I'm also going for the SDAC. Maybe I could even just use the Magni 3 as an amp for my KEF Q100 before going with a receiver down the line for them, or I could just use the Magni 3 as a preamp for the CTH? I'd really appreciate some thoughts on this.
I think Schiit just kicked the game up a notch. While I am not a fan of the brand it seems that the new $99 Magni 3 will be a giant slayer...
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no, at a certain point you were just insulting anyone because you were wrong. You were not even following the argument, just screaming the same idiotic talking points that you read on the internet.
TLDR: Massdrop has been selling UNAUTHORIZED/POTENTIALLY FAKE Chord products.
WTF Massdrop????
And someone who joined the drop has confirmed the issue here
My comment may not be relevant to these MD made products, but it is related to audiophile stuff anyway. So you better have a proper answer to this, otherwise you will lose me and many other potential customers.
UPDATE: MD has answered to the issue here TBH I'm really happy that I can put my trust in MD again. Hope that this will be a lesson for MD and for us as well.
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my point is I, and I believe many ppl here, don't want to receive old units, which we don't even know where they come from, or if they are even real. I really do hope those products MD sold were from grey mkt, but they should be more transparent and tell us upfront, and most importantly they should not be sending out old units. If you wanna save $50 to wait 6 weeks and then receive an old unit, be my guest.
yay I did it!!! After 2 years at MD, I finally got someone accused me of being employee of a company =)))) Sorry that I'm ignorant, and on behalf of those who upvoted the news link in Chord Mojo drop's talk, sorry too :P Sorry that we are ignorant of the fact that we will be receiving old units. Sorry that I broke my statement of ignoring you. Sorry :)
Thanks for being this transparent with us. This was a main point of discussion in many of the new massdrop-made drops and you clearly listened.
Is there a DAC coming up that has the same chasis (or at least the same depth and with) as the CTH and the LCX? If not, will the " Massdrop LCX+SDAC (WIP)" include RCA or maybe XLR outs?
XLR outs is the most important thing to know for me before this drop ends in order to wait or not...
My wish list: a collaboration with Audeze and a portable version of TH-X00.
I'd settle for a removable cable version of the TH-X00...
Is that a confirmation that a Liquid Crimson x MD is being developed??
Oh. And up for more updates like this!
Seems so but I don't think it will be in 2017
The line up that is currently available: -cavalli cth
is it still available? I had missed the previous drop and i do not like the sdac inside with the cth.
Please consider doing a Cavalli DIY kit for one of the amps at some point. It seems only natural that it be provided given this all started in the DIY scene.
Was really hoping for a stackable Dac in the Massdrop chassis with more inputs and balanced connections. Even so all these products seem excellent. You guys have been doing a great job. We are spoiled for choice.
Seems like the LCX+SDAC could potentially be a competitor to the Jotunheim, but hard to wait that long with the HD6XX on the way...
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Yeah Modi/Magni just finished going mid-range. Will be tough to beat for non-tube 3-figure full solution (DAC/Amp + cans), at least until Asgard 3 arrives; seems like Magni 3 eats Asgard 2's lunch for half the cost.
I agree. All of the sudden all those new cool Cavalli Massdrop releases are not that attractive as you probably can get a $99 Schiit unit that will perform just as good or dare I to say better. We need to wait for reviews, but this is interesting now. Schiit has to have a significant improvement just justify that release. The question is how much or how little they managed to achieve... And how those Cavalli/LC unit measure to the real Cavalli devies
Any more collaboration headphones coming next year? Maybe an Massdrop X Sehnnheiser HD8XX? :)
I'd die for it!
This is great work ! The only real problem I have: with so many choices, so many possible configurations and combos, it's becoming hard to make up my mind...
I have a question for Mr. Grace or Mr. Cee Tee regarding the SDAC inside the new O2/SDAC combo: is the DAC usb power driven or is it power driven by the AC outlet? I know that the standalone SDAC is usb power driven. Same with the Cavalli/SDAC combo. But how about this O2/SDAC combo? Do I need to power up the CCK with a power adapter if I use it with an iPad or iPhone or is the O2's AC adapter providing power to the SDAC?
i'm seriously considering to swap my standalone SDAC order for this unit if the SDAC in this combo is AC outlet driven.
SDAC is still USB-powered, even if in the O2+SDAC or CTH+SDAC combos.
Any chance of a hint at what the 2 non-Cavalli amps might be?
I imagine its something schiity but woo'dnt be surprised if its something nice
I will patiently wait for Liquid Crimson...... while I save up for it for next year... thx CEE_TEE for disclosing the information.
yep, I had the same thought. Crimson will be a good one to have, if the massdrop version will retain the same signature as the original.
Thank you for these clarifications and allowing us to plan which models we will want to get.
so with the new 3.5mm output on cth+ sdac, that will work as a dac output at line level i can use to connect to my monitors as a preamp level alongside my headphones? if so, definitely upgrading, count me in.
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Correct! You may want to use a 3.5mm to 3.5mm cable if your devices have a 3.5mm input jack.
perfect! my current monitors are a pair of first gen audioengine a5's so they do have a 3.5mm input. i've sent a support request for the upgrade, looking forward to it!
Thanks for these clarifications. They're really appreciated.