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Has anybody heard the HRT Microstreamer?


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I haven't heard it, so there's that, but I have had generally good experiences with their products: HeadStreamer and MusicStreamerII.  One thing I did not like about the HeadStreamer was that the firmware could not be updated via a Mac (PC only).  One thing I do not like about the MusicStreamer II is that it suffers dropouts from some unpowered USB ports.  Otherwise, I think they generally make good sounding stuff at reasonable prices.

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  • 5 months later...
  • 3 months later...

I got a Microstreamer a few weeks ago.  So in case anyone still cares, I'll chime in.


I spent a while yesterday comparing its DAC to that of the Pico, using the Pico amp in both cases.  It seems to present as much a sense of depth as the Pico does.  The sound is different though.  For now, I can't say which one is more accurate.  I'd probably have to compare both to my Lavry DA10 to figure that out, and I'm currently too lazy to do so.


The software controlled amp works as they claim.  There's a little delay after you hit the volume key on your phone, tablet, or computer, then the volume changes.  There's also a line out, which is a good thing for me.


Unfortunately, the amp only has one gain setting, which is way too high for IEMs.  With the Roxannes, which are efficient even for IEMs, the Microstreamer amp is unlistenable.  The noise floor is terrible.  I can't really fault HRT for this though.  They have to build to a common denominator.  The first thing half the fools on Head-Fi do when they get new portables is plug their HD800s in.  At the very least, there's an expectation that LCD-2s will have sufficient gain.  I wrote HRT and asked them if there was a firmware modification to drop the gain.  Unfortunately, they sent me a link to an attenuator cable.


The DAC is the stand out.  I'm impressed with it thus far.  The sample rate indicator is nice too.  But it's all of very limited use because of the amp's high gain and associated noise.

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  • 2 weeks later...

My friend let me borrow his Dragonfly 1.2 today, so I compared it to the Microstreamer and Pico DACs.  I continued using the Pico amp throughout.  I found the Dragonfly to perform at the same level as the other two.  It's definitely brighter than the Pico DAC.  It might not have quite as much a sense of depth as the other two.  That sort of thing can be tricky to assess with quick back and forth listening.  It has a very nice combination of smooth and articulate though.  That might be why some describe it as warm.  It's also possible that using its amp with full sized headphones leads to a warmer frequency response.  


When plugging directly in, It's noise floor was much lower than that of the Microstreamer.  I could still easily hear it.  But it wasn't that bad.  


The bottom line is that if it worked with my phone, I'd probably get one.  It does work with my friend's Note 2, so long as he's listening with USB Audio Player Pro.


Maybe I need to find a deal on those planar IEMs too.

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