Clive Meakins of EnjoyTheMusic.com liked the Metrum Octave MK2 and iFi-Micro i-USB so much that he purchased the review samples.
"The Octave mkII has a mid-range which is very spacious and natural with realism being especially strong due to image depth and impressive tonality. Treatment of overly sibilant recordings is amongst the best I've heard."
"A tweak I recommend for USB users; get yourself an iFi iUSBPower with a twin-headed cable, you won't look back. Just do it."
Even without the power tweaks I find the sound of the Octave is particularly natural; it gels with the sound of my record decks which from me is a huge compliment. It is not at all "in your face, aren't I impressive?" sounding. It is an affair of the heart, not the head. In some ways the Octave mkII mid-range reminds me of single-ended amplifiers, ones which are especially lucid with vocals and instruments such as saxophone.
Given that I run two record decks and the music that moves me the most I have on vinyl, how I can justify the purchase of the Octave mkII? Instead of buying so much vinyl in future I can buy lower cost CDs and there's a lot of very affordable second-hand CDs out there. With the Metrum Octave mkII I can achieve a sound equivalent to vinyl and I can throw fabulous hi-res digital into the mix too. The Octave mkII will be a great investment as it will save me money on my music purchases. Or will it? I've just worked out that I'm going to be buying a whole lot more music.
There can be no doubt that the Metrum Octave mkII is a superb DAC by almost any measure; it will suit those who prioritize natural and realistic presentation over a hyper-analytical sound."Read the entire review here:
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