NAD Masters M10 BluOS DAC/Amp with Dirac Live at CES 2019 - Page 7 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #181 of 431 Old 04-11-2019, 02:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Dirac Live-equipped M10 review unit has just shipped...

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post #182 of 431 Old 04-15-2019, 07:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Tom Blake View Post
Got a call from NAD Tech Support today to discuss my issue. They agreed it would be a desirable feature and it is being added to the development list. No promise on when or if it would be added. I imagine they will get a lot of requests for this though and it shouldn't be too hard to add. Hopefully we will see it at some point soon. In the interim I am going to connect a Bluesound Node 2i to one of the analog inputs on my iFi headphone amp to use as a source. I will move it to another room when the M10 is updated (hopefully). I continue to really like the M10 other than its current issues with integrating a headphone amp. Also impressed with NAD tech support for calling me directly! Had a nice chat with the tech support agent about my speakers also

Has anyone managed to get headphones working using the M10's PreOuts to a headphone amp? Using the BluOS app or something else?

I'm hugely disappointed that such a basic functionality wasn't included. From the research I did before buying, it certainly seemed natural that the PreOuts could be used for a headphone amp. From the manual:

4 PRE OUT
• Use dual RCA-to-RCA cable to connect PRE-OUT to the
corresponding analog audio input of compatible devices such
as amplifiers, receivers or other applicable devices. This makes it
possible to use the M10 as a pre-amplifier to such devices.


I can (sort of) accept NAD's decision not to include a native headphone jack with the M10. I definitely cannot accept that there's no basic provision to use headphones via a headphone amp when the manual clearly states that the PreOuts can be linked to amplifiers.

I've written to NAD technical support in the hope that the can include the very basic ability to channel audio through headphone amp via the PreOuts. I don't know if that would have to happen via a firmware update or an update to the BluOS app -- either way, NAD really needs to make this a priority. Dirac and some of the other exotic features mean a lot less to me than the basic ability to use the M10 with wired headphones...
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post #183 of 431 Old 04-15-2019, 07:37 AM
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^^^
the M10 will work fine with an outboard headphone amp
the M10 also has a very good Qualcomm aptX HD audio feature that can drive Bluetooth headphones

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post #184 of 431 Old 04-15-2019, 07:53 AM
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^^^
the M10 will work fine with an outboard headphone amp
the M10 also has a very good Qualcomm aptX HD audio feature that can drive Bluetooth headphones

Thanks for the response. Can you tell me what I'm doing wrong then? I correctly hooked up a Schiit heaphone amp to the M10's PreOuts. However, the only way I can get audio through the headphones is to disconnect my speakers from the M10. There's no option I can find on the BluOS app or the M10's front panel to either kill the speaker output or select headphone amp output.

If there's an obvious fix here, I'd love to hear it!
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post #185 of 431 Old 04-15-2019, 07:57 AM
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Originally Posted by sandman2575 View Post
Thanks for the response. Can you tell me what I'm doing wrong then? I correctly hooked up a Schiit heaphone amp to the M10's PreOuts. However, the only way I can get audio through the headphones is to disconnect my speakers from the M10. There's no option I can find on the BluOS app or the M10's front panel to either kill the speaker output or select headphone amp output.

If there's an obvious fix here, I'd love to hear it!

ah I understand what your issue is now: and you are correct: I agree the M10 would benefit from having a dedicated headphone amp

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post #186 of 431 Old 04-16-2019, 12:32 PM
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Dirac Live-equipped M10 review unit has just shipped...
Looking forward to your review!

Soonish?
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post #187 of 431 Old 04-16-2019, 12:44 PM
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Looking forward to your review!

Soonish?
Upgrading as I type...
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post #188 of 431 Old 04-16-2019, 12:48 PM
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Upgrading as I type...
Excellent!

Which speakers will you be pairing this with?
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post #189 of 431 Old 04-16-2019, 12:57 PM
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Excellent!

Which speakers will you be pairing this with?
Will be running the RC a little later.

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post #190 of 431 Old 04-18-2019, 08:35 PM
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Will be running the RC a little later.

Elac Adante AS-61. No sub for now...

Just ran Dirac. Very cool. Much easier than the T758...


It definitely corrected a 60hz spike in my room. In doing so, really cleaned up the soundstage and imaging that I can't really describe.

I'm going to be adding a couple of SVS subs as my bass now seems thinner with just the Elacs. Probably for the good.

Definitely, takes the M10 to another level. What a nice one box Roon/Tidal streamer.
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post #191 of 431 Old 04-18-2019, 09:08 PM
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Originally Posted by mfb View Post
Just ran Dirac. Very cool. Much easier than the T758...


It definitely corrected a 60hz spike in my room. In doing so, really cleaned up the soundstage and imaging that I can't really describe.

I'm going to be adding a couple of SVS subs as my bass now seems thinner with just the Elacs. Probably for the good.

Definitely, takes the M10 to another level. What a nice one box Roon/Tidal streamer.
Are there instructions somewhere on how to run Dirac on the M10? Do you have to use a computer or just the app?
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post #192 of 431 Old 04-18-2019, 09:15 PM
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Originally Posted by bambam View Post
Are there instructions somewhere on how to run Dirac on the M10? Do you have to use a computer or just the app?
Pretty easy. I downloaded/ran Dirac from my iMac. It recognizes the M10 via wifi. Connected the mic to the M10 via USB. Stepped through each calibration spot and pushes the output filter straight to the unit. Took about 15 min...
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post #193 of 431 Old 04-19-2019, 06:45 AM
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Were there any changes from the last update other than Dirac? Does the proximity sensor work now?

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post #194 of 431 Old 04-21-2019, 02:25 AM
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Really looking forward to the review. I am also hoping we can find out how this unit behaves in multi-room set ups.

I know it is designed to work in sync with other blue sound speakers and perhaps (?) also in sync with airplay enabled speakers like a HomePod?

Dirac usually adds some DSP delay so I am wondering if multiroom syncing adjusts for that.
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post #195 of 431 Old 04-21-2019, 03:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Yiannis_K View Post
Really looking forward to the review. I am also hoping we can find out how this unit behaves in multi-room set ups.

I know it is designed to work in sync with other blue sound speakers and perhaps (?) also in sync with airplay enabled speakers like a HomePod?

Dirac usually adds some DSP delay so I am wondering if multiroom syncing adjusts for that.
To be clear, the M10 is designed to be a superior 2.1 or 2.2 channel all-in-one streamer/DAC/amp for music, with one pair of speakers in one place.

It is the BluOS system it uses for control which is designed to do that expanded shared use of music sources into other areas of the home. Other Bluesound player products such as Node 2i and Vault 2i, or player-speakers can connect with the M10 to play the same music on a pair of systems, or all play different sources and playlists on up to something like 64 different units. The BluOS is a simple way to get music everywhere without expensive Control4 or similar hardware and software solutions from custom installers.

Yes, the BluOS will send music to a HomePod, though you really don't need Airplay 2 for it because BluOS uses your home wireless network for most everything, and that'll usually be a higher quality signal.

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post #196 of 431 Old 04-21-2019, 04:08 AM
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To be clear, the M10 is designed to be a superior 2.1 or 2.2 channel all-in-one streamer/DAC/amp for music, with one pair of speakers in one place.

It is the BluOS system it uses for control which is designed to do that expanded shared use of music sources into other areas of the home. Other Bluesound player products such as Node 2i and Vault 2i, or player-speakers can connect with the M10 to play the same music on a pair of systems, or all play different sources and playlists on up to something like 64 different units. The BluOS is a simple way to get music everywhere without expensive Control4 or similar hardware and software solutions from custom installers.

Yes, the BluOS will send music to a HomePod, though you really don't need Airplay 2 for it because BluOS uses your home wireless network for most everything, and that'll usually be a higher quality signal.
Agree about the signal quality you mention and same goes for Roon (which I use) for streaming to the M10. Using Bluesound to stream multiroom (e.g. M10 plus a blue sound Flex 2i speaker in the kitchen) will need to adjust for the Dirac DSP introduced delay in the M10. If not then the M10 is a single zone streaming amplifier only. Nothing wrong with that, it is just important to know for some potential users who are looking for multiroom functionality.

Having Airplay 2 support is an added benefit for those who already own a HomePod or a sonos one. It is potentially allowing for multiroom playback incorporating speakers outside the Bluesound family. Great to have as long as we can have mulitoroom playback in sync. I am not sure if the BlueOS app can be used to send an Airplay 2 stream. Either way, as all Bluesound products are Airplay 2 enabled, an iOS user can stream directly from within iOS / Apple Music. Airplay / Airplay 2 would actually be necessary for the BlueOS app to send music to a HomePod (if that is even possible via this app). No way to communicate with it otherwise.

The same applies to using the Node 2i or the Vault 2i in conjunction with the M10. These usability questions only apply for users who aim to use the M10 as part of a multiroom system.

Last edited by Yiannis_K; 04-21-2019 at 04:23 AM.
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post #197 of 431 Old 04-21-2019, 11:10 AM
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I did some a/b testing with a Lyngdorf 2170 amp an a set of bowers speakers 702s2 floor stands. To my surprise the M10 was close to the Lyngdorf. As I grow older I think I’m not so picky as in my 30’s. Might switch to the all in one solution.

My only concern is the software updates. How long will this device will be supported?


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post #198 of 431 Old 04-21-2019, 11:57 AM
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I did some a/b testing with a Lyngdorf 2170 amp an a set of bowers speakers 702s2 floor stands. To my surprise the M10 was close to the Lyngdorf. As I grow older I think I’m not so picky as in my 30’s. Might switch to the all in one solution.

My only concern is the software updates. How long will this device will be supported?


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I have had Bluesound devices since the end of 2015, and my son, daughter, and two cousins still have some of the 1st generation Bluesound Node. I have had an NAD T758 AV receiver just as long. Free firmware and application updates continue to this day, and only the T758's available (optional) hardware updates have cost any money. There is only praise from me for the level of support offered by Lenbrook Group for their NAD and Bluesound brands, I can only assume the same is true for the PSB speaker line.

Currently, this product, the T758v3, and the "2i" generation of Blusound products has grown so exponentially for Lenbrook Group that they are actively combining and growing the engineering and support teams of NAD and Bluesound. Support is important to them and us, the customers, and they take it seriously. It's working and I see no reason to think the M10 wouldn't be supported for many years to come.
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post #199 of 431 Old 04-21-2019, 12:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Yiannis_K View Post
Agree about the signal quality you mention and same goes for Roon (which I use) for streaming to the M10. Using Bluesound to stream multiroom (e.g. M10 plus a blue sound Flex 2i speaker in the kitchen) will need to adjust for the Dirac DSP introduced delay in the M10. If not then the M10 is a single zone streaming amplifier only. Nothing wrong with that, it is just important to know for some potential users who are looking for multiroom functionality.

Having Airplay 2 support is an added benefit for those who already own a HomePod or a sonos one. It is potentially allowing for multiroom playback incorporating speakers outside the Bluesound family. Great to have as long as we can have mulitoroom playback in sync. I am not sure if the BlueOS app can be used to send an Airplay 2 stream. Either way, as all Bluesound products are Airplay 2 enabled, an iOS user can stream directly from within iOS / Apple Music. Airplay / Airplay 2 would actually be necessary for the BlueOS app to send music to a HomePod (if that is even possible via this app). No way to communicate with it otherwise.

The same applies to using the Node 2i or the Vault 2i in conjunction with the M10. These usability questions only apply for users who aim to use the M10 as part of a multiroom system.
Regarding this perceived delay from Dirac being implemented:

I calibrated my M10 today with Dirac Live. (OMG is it good!) The M10 is in my office which is adjoining our living room where I also have an NAD T758v3. After doing that, I loaded up the play queue from a selection in my own library, joined the M10 and T758v3 and hit play. Because I can open two doors between the two rooms and can also turn off Dirac in the T758v3, I tried to detect a delay. I tried Dirac on with both, and I tried Dirac on with the M10 and off on the T758v3. If there is a delay, it isn't 70 milliseconds...it's nanoseconds. I could detect nothing grossly out-of-whack, not even a little. Perhaps the most critical ears and/or measuring equipment can find fault, I couldn't.
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post #200 of 431 Old 04-21-2019, 01:15 PM
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Regarding this perceived delay from Dirac being implemented:

I calibrated my M10 today with Dirac Live. (OMG is it good!) The M10 is in my office which is adjoining our living room where I also have an NAD T758v3. After doing that, I loaded up the play queue from a selection in my own library, joined the M10 and T758v3 and hit play. Because I can open two doors between the two rooms and can also turn off Dirac in the T758v3, I tried to detect a delay. I tried Dirac on with both, and I tried Dirac on with the M10 and off on the T758v3. If there is a delay, it isn't 70 milliseconds...it's nanoseconds. I could detect nothing grossly out-of-whack, not even a little. Perhaps the most critical ears and/or measuring equipment can find fault, I couldn't.
Ken I greatly appreciate this. Thank you very much for taking the time and the effort to test this out :-). Great result indeed.

I recently emailed Dirac directly and they informed me that the once Dirac is activated, it introduces about 20 milliseconds of delay. As you cannot hear anything out of sync with the T758v3, we should assume the Bluesound is adjusting timing intelligently. This is very encouraging indeed.

I wonder if the same good result applies when using airplay to sync the two.

Many thanks again
Yiannis
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post #201 of 431 Old 04-21-2019, 02:00 PM
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Ken I greatly appreciate this. Thank you very much for taking the time and the effort to test this out :-). Great result indeed.

I recently emailed Dirac directly and they informed me that the once Dirac is activated, it introduces about 20 milliseconds of delay. As you cannot hear anything out of sync with the T758v3, we should assume the Bluesound is adjusting timing intelligently. This is very encouraging indeed.

I wonder if the same good result applies when using airplay to sync the two.

Many thanks again
Yiannis
Unfortunately, that's something I can't now or for the foreseeable future ever test for you. The only Apple anything in my household are the ones I can eat. And I aim to keep it that way.
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post #202 of 431 Old 04-22-2019, 12:00 AM
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Unfortunately, that's something I can't now or for the foreseeable future ever test for you. The only Apple anything in my household are the ones I can eat. And I aim to keep it that way.
He he he! I know many people who avoid the bad apples, my brother is one of them and he is constantly telling me off for having them in my home ;-)

Many thanks again for the wonderful testing.
Best
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post #203 of 431 Old 04-22-2019, 07:36 AM
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As for the M10's longevity re: continued BluOS updates, note that all Bluesound units from the original Node on out remain software upgradeable (outside of Airplay 2). Can't think of another audio platform offhand that's received as many updates and improved more than BluOS.
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post #204 of 431 Old 04-23-2019, 05:47 PM
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Well, I just got this extremely disappointing response from NAD technical support, in regard to my question about how to get wired headphones working with the M10:

"Thank you for contacting NAD Support.

By design the M10 is intended to power a pair of passive speakers and as a result there is no way to disable or mute the attached speakers. With that being said I will bring your request to the attention of our Quality Assurance team to see if there would be any way to implement this feature in a future update however I do not believe this will be possible.

I'm sorry I do not have more positive news for you but please feel free to let me know if you have any further questions or concerns.

Regards,

Jon P.
NAD Technical Support"


This is a totally unacceptable answer, in my view. What does that even mean, that because the M10 powers passive speakers "as a result" there is no way to mute the speakers? Isn't this exactly what any standard stereo receiver can do? Much less a state of the art $2,500 piece of kit?

NAD really needed to make very clear that the Pre Outs specifically do NOT support audio to a headphone amp, since the manual clearly does say the Pre Outs allow the M10 to be used as a preamp to amplifiers and receivers. Why would anyone assume that a headphone amp would NOT be included among "amplifiers and receivers"?

Are headphone users some overlooked minority of audiophiles? I seriously do not get that NAD could not anticipate that many folks would be interested in using the M10 with headphones, in addition to speakers. Why is the assumption that users should use 'bluetooth headphones'? Bluetooth headphones, even using the most advanced codecs, are lossy. Isn't the whole point of the M10 that it supports Hi Res audio? Doesn't that naturally mean you would expect to be able to use wired headphones?

Seriously considering sending the M10 back now. This is ridiculous.
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post #205 of 431 Old 04-23-2019, 06:45 PM
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Well, I just got this extremely disappointing response from NAD technical support, in regard to my question about how to get wired headphones working with the M10:

"Thank you for contacting NAD Support.

By design the M10 is intended to power a pair of passive speakers and as a result there is no way to disable or mute the attached speakers. With that being said I will bring your request to the attention of our Quality Assurance team to see if there would be any way to implement this feature in a future update however I do not believe this will be possible.

I'm sorry I do not have more positive news for you but please feel free to let me know if you have any further questions or concerns.

Regards,

Jon P.
NAD Technical Support"


This is a totally unacceptable answer, in my view. What does that even mean, that because the M10 powers passive speakers "as a result" there is no way to mute the speakers? Isn't this exactly what any standard stereo receiver can do? Much less a state of the art $2,500 piece of kit?

NAD really needed to make very clear that the Pre Outs specifically do NOT support audio to a headphone amp, since the manual clearly does say the Pre Outs allow the M10 to be used as a preamp to amplifiers and receivers. Why would anyone assume that a headphone amp would NOT be included among "amplifiers and receivers"?

Are headphone users some overlooked minority of audiophiles? I seriously do not get that NAD could not anticipate that many folks would be interested in using the M10 with headphones, in addition to speakers. Why is the assumption that users should use 'bluetooth headphones'? Bluetooth headphones, even using the most advanced codecs, are lossy. Isn't the whole point of the M10 that it supports Hi Res audio? Doesn't that naturally mean you would expect to be able to use wired headphones?

Seriously considering sending the M10 back now. This is ridiculous.
I understand your frustration, but don't have a problem with that aspect of the M10.

True that most AVR's and certainly 2-channel receivers have the ability to automatically mute the speakers if a headphone is connected. When I laid eyes on the M10 I figured right from the start it wouldn't be convenient for headphone use because obviously the "full frontal" display affords no 3.5mm or 1/4" socket. I certainly wouldn't want to be reaching "around back" to find one every time I wanted to use headphones.

The M10 appealed to me because I wanted all its features in such a small and beautiful package, and I wanted to hear how the ESS Sabre DAC worked with the refined Class D amp. I expected it to bring something to my KEF LS50's that had been missing, and in that the M10 has not disappointed.

KEF R500, R200C, R100, R50, SVS SB2000 sub, NAD T758v3 AVR, LG UP875 4K BlueRay, Samsung UN55JU6500F 4K LED TV, KEF M500 headphones, Sony CDP-CE500 CD changer. Office: NAD M10, KEF LS50, KEF Kube 10b, E.A.T. C-Major TT w/Ortofon Quintet Blue cart.
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post #206 of 431 Old 04-24-2019, 07:53 AM
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@kenm

Thanks for your comments. I appreciate that the M10's lack of wired headphone support is a non-issue for many M10 owners -- though I also believe there is a not insignificant segment of potential buyers out there who will now avoid the M10 because of this, to my mind, astonishing miscalculation on NAD's part.

Hooking up a headphone amp avoids the 'fumbling with the back panel' problem you describe. I have a small headphone amp nicely connected to the Pre Outs, which sits right alongside the M10 in my cabinet. Very easy to hook up my headphones that way.

My dilemma now is deciding whether to (1) cut my losses and send the M10 back, (2) pony up for a set of Bluetooth headphones, (3) pony up for a new compact stereo/home theater receiver so that I can use the M10 as a pure preamp, (4) manually disconnect the speakers every time I want to use wired headphones. Two of those options add to the already substantial cost of the M10. The 4th option is really just not practical for my setup.

If anyone can recommend a relatively inexpensive (i.e. $350 or less) *compact* stereo receiver, I'd love to hear it. My stereo cabinet is unfortunately pretty narrow -- one of the reasons the beautifully compact M10 appealed to me -- so I can't accommodate anything with a depth greater than 12 or 12.25 inches...
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post #207 of 431 Old 04-24-2019, 08:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandman2575 View Post
My dilemma now is deciding whether to (1) cut my losses and send the M10 back, (2) pony up for a set of Bluetooth headphones, (3) pony up for a new compact stereo/home theater receiver so that I can use the M10 as a pure preamp, (4) manually disconnect the speakers every time I want to use wired headphones. Two of those options add to the already substantial cost of the M10. The 4th option is really just not practical for my setup.
before you return the M10, you should try a pair of aptX BT headphones: you may be pleasantly surprised
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post #208 of 431 Old 04-24-2019, 12:39 PM
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NAD Masters M10 BluOS DAC/Amp with Dirac Live at CES 2019

Quote:
Originally Posted by markrubin View Post
before you return the M10, you should try a pair of aptX BT headphones: you may be pleasantly surprised


+1 i didn’t think it would be that good (aptX) plus you can walk around
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post #209 of 431 Old 04-24-2019, 01:24 PM
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Any strong recommendations for BT headphones?

I need over-ear. Don't need noise-cancelling.

Some of the high-end BT offerings from Beyerdynamic and AudioTechnica are too expensive. Even the (relatively) less expensive Sony WH-1000XM3 is still $350, for which price I could just buy a new receiver and use the M10 as a preamp so that I can use my Sennheiser 660S.

Do folks think AptX vs. AptX HD makes a difference?
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post #210 of 431 Old 04-25-2019, 10:45 AM
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Have you considered the Pryma headphones which can be wired or Bluetooth via their Air Cable


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