With Oppo's seemingly unstoppable success with every product they release, it was interesting to hear that they had in fact snuck out an update to their ever popular portable Amp/DAC, the HA2.
New and old side by side in our Wellington store
While the HA2 SE looks virtually identical to the prior, it does come with some revised accessories such as a right angled USB to USB cable.
The Special Edition instead focuses on the Digital to Analogue Conversion - They have opted for the ESS Sabre 9028 Q2M chip offering 'better sound' a fairly ambiguous compliment to something that sounds fairly good to start with.
To avoid beating around the bush, I gave it a quickcharge (literally) and had a listen through my trusty AF180s.
The former HA2 supposedly sometimes made sensitive IEMs (In Ear Monitors) hiss a little bit.
Be it years of drumming or working in a HiFi store that doesn't really call the likes of Diana Krall it's cup of tea, I never noticed it (or I was a lucky one).
The SE has supposedly completely nipped this in the bud to make it much more IEM friendly.
The guts of the new HA2SE
To my ears it does sound better. More authoritative and more 'drive' and has a better ability to delve out detail without trying to grab your attention. But sound does not really translate to text so you should stop reading this article, call up the shop to make sure we have stock and come and have a listen for yourself!