1 (edited by KillerQ 2020-11-21 22:53:00)

Topic: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

Hey, All,

I just picked up this beautiful Rupert Neve RNHP Amp to compliment my RME ADI-2 fs. Here are the specs:

https://rupertneve.com/products/rnhp-he … amplifier/


What RME settings would be best when using the RNHP as the main amp (I’ll be mostly using Anandas, Aeon 2 closed, and E-MU Teaks as my headphones) ? I know different people have different opinions, but I think I should put it on the fixed output mode and keep the RNHP amp volume up all the way - that way I use the RME as the volume control. Right ?

I’d prefer to use the RME volume, so would I leave the new amp turned up all the way and leave AUTO REF LEVEL turned on with the RME? What about REF level +db settings?

Then I’ll remember these steps to keep in mind for future amps.

Thanks for helping me learn.

2

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

You have an ADI-2 DAC FS, right? In that case you just wasted your money. The DAC's internal headphone amp has less distortion, less noise and much more power than the RNHP. Plus using an external headphone amp disables all the nice protection mechanisms that the ADI-2 DAC includes.

Regards
Matthias Carstens
RME

3 (edited by KillerQ 2020-11-22 05:40:58)

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

MC wrote:

You have an ADI-2 DAC FS, right? In that case you just wasted your money. The DAC's internal headphone amp has less distortion, less noise and much more power than the RNHP. Plus using an external headphone amp disables all the nice protection mechanisms that the ADI-2 DAC includes.

I appreciate your feedback.

But, what would be way to have it connected to my RME, though?

Also, What would the next step up be for an amplifier that would pair well as an external amp for the RME ADI-2 fs?

4 (edited by ramses 2020-11-22 09:55:11)

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

1st of all, could you kindly confirm what RME product you bought ?

ADI-2 FS ?
https://archiv.rme-audio.de/images/products/products_adi-2_fs_1.jpg
or
ADI-2 DAC FS ?
https://archiv.rme-audio.de/images/products/products_adi-2_dac_1.jpg


In both cases use smth like a "Mic Cable" with XLR plugs on both sides for a balanced connection.

I read the Rupert Neves information this way, that its "calibrated for" +4 dBu, but it also tell that the maximum input level is +22.8 dBu.

So on the outputs of the RME product I would propose a static setting of +4 dBu reference level. And the ADI-2 DAC FS I would set to +7 dBu. I do not think that it makes a big difference to turn down the volume by -3 to exactly match the +4 dBu.

https://rupert-neve-www.imgix.net/static/media/2016/04/RNHP-back-description.jpg?auto=format&fit=max&q=70&w=1125&dpr=undefined&ixlib=js-1.2.1&s=15993842e5c5fce48c8a5065b806568d

BR
Ramses
X10SRi-F, E5-1650v4, Win10 Pro 20H2, Cubase 11.0 Pro, UFX+, XTC, 12Mic, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

ramses wrote:

1st of all, could you kindly confirm what RME product you bought ?

ADI-2 FS ?
https://archiv.rme-audio.de/images/products/products_adi-2_fs_1.jpg
or
ADI-2 DAC FS ?
https://archiv.rme-audio.de/images/products/products_adi-2_dac_1.jpg


In both cases use smth like a "Mic Cable" with XLR plugs on both sides for a balanced connection.

I read the Rupert Neves information this way, that its "calibrated for" +4 dBu, but it also tell that the maximum input level is +22.8 dBu.

So on the outputs of the RME product I would propose a static setting of +4 dBu reference level. And the ADI-2 DAC FS I would set to +7 dBu. I do not think that it makes a big difference to turn down the volume by -3 to exactly match the +4 dBu.

https://rupert-neve-www.imgix.net/static/media/2016/04/RNHP-back-description.jpg?auto=format&fit=max&q=70&w=1125&dpr=undefined&ixlib=js-1.2.1&s=15993842e5c5fce48c8a5065b806568d

Thank you. I have the RME ADI-2 fs.

6 (edited by KillerQ 2020-11-22 19:04:34)

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

Also, when told that the RME likes to use auto ref level and then leave the external amp on max volume, someone in another forum says this:


“That is not the same as fixed output.

Anyway, amps are designed to be driven fully- that is, the input should be at full output (0 dB) or close to it. That's where they perform best. If you control volume at the source, your amp has very little signal to work with and you're hearing the worst your amp can deliver.

You risk blowing your brains out or destroying equipment if you run amps on max. There is really no good reason to do that. It may seem convenient, but it's wrong in every objective way.

I agree and will add that I have the gain trimmed 50% on my class D amp that feeds LS50's. At Odb the volume (on the ADI2 DAC) is at the highest volume I would give these speakers (and yes the amp is way over powered for the speakers).

my suggestion to is turn Auto Ref on, Set the DAC volume to Odb and with the RNHP volume encoder at its lowest setting listen and gradually raise the volume on the RNHP till you think it is just too loud and leave it there ( mark its position). then in the future, use the volume encoder on the ADI2 DAC and leave the RNHP encoder alone”



So what do the RME people here say is the best advice to follow ?


Thoughts?

Thanks in advance!


ramses wrote:

1st of all, could you kindly confirm what RME product you bought ?

ADI-2 FS ?
https://archiv.rme-audio.de/images/products/products_adi-2_fs_1.jpg
or
ADI-2 DAC FS ?
https://archiv.rme-audio.de/images/products/products_adi-2_dac_1.jpg


In both cases use smth like a "Mic Cable" with XLR plugs on both sides for a balanced connection.

I read the Rupert Neves information this way, that its "calibrated for" +4 dBu, but it also tell that the maximum input level is +22.8 dBu.

So on the outputs of the RME product I would propose a static setting of +4 dBu reference level. And the ADI-2 DAC FS I would set to +7 dBu. I do not think that it makes a big difference to turn down the volume by -3 to exactly match the +4 dBu.

https://rupert-neve-www.imgix.net/static/media/2016/04/RNHP-back-description.jpg?auto=format&fit=max&q=70&w=1125&dpr=undefined&ixlib=js-1.2.1&s=15993842e5c5fce48c8a5065b806568d

7 (edited by ramses 2020-11-22 19:47:02)

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

ADI-2 FS does not have auto ref level, this is a unique feature of ADI-2 Pro / DAC devices.
ADI-2 FS and ADI-2 DAC FS are different products.

BR
Ramses
X10SRi-F, E5-1650v4, Win10 Pro 20H2, Cubase 11.0 Pro, UFX+, XTC, 12Mic, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

ramses wrote:

ADI-2 FS does not have auto ref level, this is a unique feature of ADI-2 Pro / DAC devices.
ADI-2 FS and ADI-2 DAC FS are different products, as you can see already from the pictures, that I linked above.

Oh, yes. I’m sorry. I was confused. I have the DAC version. Here https://imgur.com/a/OqYMhzL

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

Ok, then pls re-read post #2 and #4.

BR
Ramses
X10SRi-F, E5-1650v4, Win10 Pro 20H2, Cubase 11.0 Pro, UFX+, XTC, 12Mic, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

ramses wrote:

Ok, then pls re-read post #2 and #4.

Thanks.

Do you have the RME ADI-2 fs DAC as well? If so, what external amp do you like to use with your Planar Magnetic headphones?

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

I have the ADI-2 Pro FS R BE and use it with the LCD-3.

BR
Ramses
X10SRi-F, E5-1650v4, Win10 Pro 20H2, Cubase 11.0 Pro, UFX+, XTC, 12Mic, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

ramses wrote:

I have the ADI-2 Pro FS R BE and use it with the LCD-3.

Very nice!!

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

ramses wrote:

I have the ADI-2 Pro FS R BE and use it with the LCD-3.

Is this the same as you recommended? https://imgur.com/a/SxRot7u

14 (edited by KaiS 2020-11-23 01:35:18)

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

Two different approaches to use ADI-2 with external amps, how to set them up:


To maximize ADI-2's dynamic range (S/N ratio) it's best to have its volume control set to 0 dB, using the external amp's volume control.
• Set external amp's volume control to middle position or some above.
• Switch OFF ADI-2's "Auto Reference Level".
• Set ADI-2's volume control to 0 dB.
• Select the reference level that fits best to your loudness demands.
• Use the ext. amp's volume dial to control the final loudness.

• Once you start to use any of ADI-2's DSP functions like e.g. the EQ, compensate possible level boosts with ADI-2's volume control until the Level Meter does not show overs.


If you want to use ADI-2's digital volume control, ADI-2 DAC / (Pro) has a clever option that increases the usable dynamic range by 18 / (20) dB: "Auto Reference Level":

• Switch ON ADI-2's "Auto Reference Level".
• Set ADI-2 DAC's (Pro's) volume control to -18 / (-20) dBr.
• Set ext. amp's volume control slightly above your normal listening level.
• Use ADI-2's volume control to set the final listening level.

Now ADI-2 automatically selects the reference level that fits best to your loudness demands, while maximizing it's DAC's dynamic range.

If your external amp does not have a volume control, use variable passive attenuators to fit the level.

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

KaiS wrote:

Two different approaches to use ADI-2 with external amps, how to set them up:


To maximize ADI-2's dynamic range (S/N ratio) it's best to have its volume control set to 0 dB, using the external amp's volume control.
• Set external amp's volume control to middle position or some above.
• Switch OFF ADI-2's "Auto Reference Level".
• Set ADI-2's volume control to 0 dB.
• Select the reference level that fits best to your loudness demands.
• Use the ext. amp's volume dial to control the final loudness.

• Once you start to use any of ADI-2's DSP functions like e.g. the EQ, compensate possible level boosts with ADI-2's volume control until the Level Meter does not show overs.


If you want to use ADI-2's digital volume control, ADI-2 DAC / (Pro) has a clever option that increases the usable dynamic range by 18 / (20) dB: "Auto Reference Level":

• Switch ON ADI-2's "Auto Reference Level".
• Set ADI-2 DAC's (Pro's) volume control to -18 / (-20) dBr.
• Set ext. amp's volume control slightly above your normal listening level.
• Use ADI-2's volume control to set the final listening level.

Now ADI-2 automatically selects the reference level that fits best to your loudness demands, while maximizing it's DAC's dynamic range.

Thank you VERY much for this. It’s funny how many people don’t understand just how versatile the RME ADI-2 DAC fs can be !

Re: I just got a Rupert Neve RNHP amp - best settings on RME ADI-2 fs?

You're welcome!

This type of question arises here very frequently.
The above intends to condense the necessary information into a universal answer.