Historians have this quirky habit of dividing history into various periods based on big moments, wild culture shifts, technological advancements, and other defining characteristics. Now, some of these history buffs think that the takeover of smartphones marks a new era in history. These tiny devices have caused such a ruckus in how we live, chat, and digest information that it’s like history hitting the dance floor with a fresh pair of kicks. This wave could be seen as the beginning of the Digital Age or Smartphone Era in historical terms.
When it comes to music playback throughout history, there are plenty of defining moments. Although older than me, the vinyl movement is going stronger than ever, the CDs are also making a spectacular comeback, but undeniably, online music streaming is the future of HiFi. The funny thing is that the music streamers of today are also divided by history: before and after the launch of the EverSolo DMP-A6. We should probably start from scratch, throw 2023 A.D. into the garbage bin, and go with the E.V. (EverSolo) year one instead.
Jokes aside, if you are moderately interested in music steamers, then you heard about a mysterious device in close audiophile quarters, called the DMP-A6 which people are still worshiping like a modern God of audiophilia. DMP-A6 deserved all the credit and appreciation as at that price, nothing came remotely close to its feature set and sound fidelity. It checked too many boxes, it looked great, it had an amazing app and it was destined to succeed. I’m a DMP-A6 user myself and when I made up my mind to upgrade it with an LHY LPS-A6 linear power supply upgrade kit that Beatechnik is offering separately, EverSolo hinted that I should hold my horses as something is slowly cooking in the oven. When Catalin (the newest member of the SoundNews team) and I departed for the Audio Video Show 2023 in Warsaw, Eki, and David of EverSolo sent a couple of pictures and a spec sheet for their upcoming wunderbar DMP-A8. Even if we were surrounded by hundreds of audiophile-worthy gear to explore, I stopped for a moment, taken back by the improvements made for their upcoming unit. On paper, the DMP-A8 was exactly what I imagined a do-it-all unit should have. Ultra-linear, but ultimately flat-sounding ESS Sabre chips were no more, replaced by two velvety-sounding AKM4499EX chips. The tiny switching mode power supply was replaced by a linear transformer that powers the analog circuitry and there is a secondary power supply dedicated for its digital section. The volume control was completely overhauled, going with an R-2R resistor ladder and with plenty of analog relays for a perfect channel balance. The clocking system saw a massive jump, going with higher accuracy femtosecond clocks. Now, here’s the cool part: instead of going with an analog or digital attenuator for its output stage, we got a fully balanced line amplifier circuit! This is not just a wired/wireless streamer, DAC, and an offline music server (via an optional m.2 SSD), but also a fully-fledged preamplifier!
I had one single complaint in my EverSolo DMP-A6 review, my highest desire was the inclusion of an I2S output. I consider it to be the fastest and most reliable data transmission protocol, some of the very best DACs on the planet have an I2S input and it would be a pity not using them at their maximum potential. I can finally hook up a Rockna Wavedream Signature DAC via I2S to the DMP-A8 and call it a day! The not-so-cool part? All the improvements had an impact on its price, going with a respectable $1980 price in the USA and €1980 in Europe. This is their statement all-in-one unit, so I’ll prepare an in-depth look at their brainchild. Let’s dive in!
Design & Build Quality
The parent company of EverSolo is Zidoo, known for crafting media players for quite some time. Their top-tier media player, the NEO Alpha was also reviewed around here. Once you see the resemblance between the NEO Alpha and DMP-A8, you cannot unsee it. NEO Alpha inspired the EverSolo team and I’m okay with that, as instead of a bent all-aluminum chassis of the NEO Alpha, we got a fully CNC machined case, similar to that of DMP-A6, just considerably wider, deeper, and weightier.
The unit is built at high standards, having thick aluminum plates and the same matte black paint. It also uses four metallic feet with rubber pads that will absorb micro-vibrations coming from within its electronics. So far, this is the biggest LCD screen I’ve tested on a streamer and DAC, it’s a 6” touch-screen offering a stunning first impression. It seems to use an IPS panel, having great viewing angles and a decent contrast ratio, but please don’t expect inky blacks of OLED panels as that isn’t going to happen. Its UI is complex but intuitive, it even has a dedicated control app for iOS and Android devices which can work as a remote for the unit.
Its volume knob offers a pleasant physical resistance and since it’s an R2R volume control, you can hear the analog relays clicking which aren’t loud or annoying. This is a stepped volume control that can work in 0.5 or 1dB steps and it’s lit with small LEDs so you can see it in the dark. Instead of a single wireless antenna found on most HiFi devices, EverSolo upped their game and added two antennas to cover a much wider area without losing the signal. My Gold Note DS-10 Plus was sometimes losing the signal strength in the living room, something I hope won’t happen with the DMP-A8.
I don’t see a single screw all around, making it simple, yet elegant looking. At 5 kilos (~11 lbs.), it’s on the heavier side, adding confidence that I’m dealing with a high-quality product. At 388 x 248 x 90 mm, it is bigger than most all-in-one units I tested around here and apart from a plasticky volume wheel, it still looks like a proper HiFi unit, having a high WAF attached to it.
Controls & Connectivity
DMP-A8 has an intuitive front panel, with a touch screen located in the middle and a volume knob to its right, which can act as an On/Off button. It looks symmetrical, clean, simple, and easy to understand, what else would you need?
Having a glimpse on the back panel, it will take some time to digest everything you see. Just look at that connectivity! In terms of digital inputs, there’s a Gigabit Ethernet port, a USB type-B, a pair of Coaxial and Optical inputs, and an E-ARC HDMI input for the cinephile in you, all of which unlock its built-in DAC section. We have two USB Type-A ports, one used to connect third-party DACs and one for storage expansion, plus an Optical, Coaxial, and I2S output in case you want to use it as a streamer. We have three antennas that are working as wireless boosters, one for Bluetooth and two for a Wi-Fi connection and on the far right you can spot a pair of RCA and XLR outputs and a mirrored symmetry of analog inputs, just in case you want to use it as a dedicated preamplifier.
On its bottom plate, you’ll find an M.2 SSD slot, there’s a screwdriver in the package that will open that door, allowing for convenient SSD installation without disassembling the unit. It supports NVMe 2280-type SSDs of up to 4 TB in size. If your music collection is bigger than that, you can always add a USB flash or SSD drive via the USB OTG port found on its back.
Under the Hood of DMP-A8
Under the hood, the DMP-A8 is a rich mix of impressive features, revealing a versatile and powerful audio tool for enthusiasts and novices alike. When unboxing new toys, I’m always eager to peek under the hood. A robust performance typically originates from stellar PCB design and smart component selection. EverSolo’s track record with high-grade electronics, especially the DAC-Z8 and DMP-A6, showed impressive interiors, and I hoped to see a similar setup in the DMP-A8.
Dual Hybrid Power Supply: A core aspect of high-end audio is an excellent power supply design, and the DMP-A8 brings a dual hybrid power supply to the scene. It smartly combines a switching mode power supply with a linear and regulated transformer in the same chassis, reaping the advantages of both—low ripple and noise, fast transient response, and high efficiency. The switching mode power supply juices up the digital section, while the analog circuitry gets its power from the linear and regulated toroidal transformer. A substantial chunk of internal space is devoted to this power supply, underscoring EverSolo’s commitment to clean power, a critical factor for top-tier performance.
D-to-A conversion: At the heart of its digital-to-analog conversion, you’ll find two flagship-grade AKM 4499EX DAC chips teaming up with AK4191EQ delta-sigma modulators. EverSolo stepped up the game from the ESS Sabre chips in the DMP-A6, employing higher-grade chips integrating Velvet Sound Technology for a more natural and organic presentation.
Digital Receiver and Clocks: The newest XMOS XU-316 digital receiver brings enhanced processing power and quadrupled RAM size, unlocking high-res PCM and native DSD512 playback. The presence of dual high-precision Accusilicon AS318-B femtosecond clocks fine-tunes sound timing across different sample rates.
Analog Output Stage: The current-to-voltage conversion and analog output stage consist of dual op-amps and numerous discrete components, including resistors, diodes, WIMA reds, Nichicon capacitors, and culminating with OMRON relays. This isn’t your typical op-amp-based output stage; it’s more of a hybrid one.
Bluetooth Receiver and Wireless Boosters: The flagship QCC5125 Qualcomm Bluetooth receiver supports an array of codecs and operates with wireless boosters, offering an expansive operating range that covers more than enough space in a four-room apartment.
Fully Balanced Line Amplifier: The DMP-A8 boasts a fully balanced line amplifier (preamplifier) through RCA and XLR inputs. It provides 10 dB of analog gain, ensuring low distortion and impeccable channel balance when combined with the R2R volume control.
R2R Volume Control and Streamer: The device uses a 4-way, fully differential, and fully balanced R2R volume control that effectively suppresses distortion and noise in the analog domain. Additionally, it features a wired and wireless streamer that can utilize the internal DAC section or third-party DACs connected via the USB-A port, Optical, Coaxial, or I2S outputs. Supporting Tidal, Qobuz, Deezer, Spotify, Amazon Music, and Apple Music, this streamer allows direct content streaming without extra settings. More services are anticipated through firmware updates, and it also supports Apple’s AirPlay, DLNA, and UPnP. The coolest features of all? It’s Roon enabled! It can be used as a Roon endpoint together with a Roon core installed somewhere around the house, even if Roon Ready certification is still undergoing.
EverSolo Controller App
If you haven’t had the chance to play around with the DMP-A6, then you should know these folks have crafted their very own app that syncs with both iOS and Android devices. Absolutely every feature is at your fingertips—you can select the input and output, access your music stored on the M.2 SSD, and here’s the cherry on top, you can mirror its screen on your smartphone, automatically flipping into a landscape view. The connection between your phone and the DMP-A8 via Wi-Fi feels like a race car: snappy and lightning-fast. I had a casting option on a Shanling EM7 but handled through Bluetooth, it had its fair share of lags and disconnects, unlike the seamless experience with EverSolo streamers. This casting option is as solid as a rock, everything moves swiftly, and you can even toss in a variety of 3rd party apps, turning it into a versatile music streamer, sans the requirement of a PC or Roon server. And if Roon is your jam, it effortlessly serves as a Roon endpoint via wired or wireless connections—just ensure you’ve got a Roon server set up first. I took the wireless and wired route, and my Roon server spotted it in a jiffy, making music streaming convenient and user-friendly.
In case you’re not keen on tinkering with Roon or third-party apps like the EverSolo Controller, you’ve got the failsafe option of Spotify Connect or Tidal Connect, which runs perfectly fine.
Why Invest in the EverSolo DMP-A8?
Before diving into its performance, let’s zoom out and uncover the full range of capabilities the DMP-A8 offers. In my trek through various DACs, I’ve stumbled upon pricey units that boast limited features: a few filters, a volume control (mostly an attenuator), and a remote menu and volume adjustment. The DMP-A8 is a different breed.
• Smartphone with a 6″ screen: Incredibly, it houses a smartphone-like interface within the unit itself. You can tinker with third-party apps (more coming soon), all controlled through the EverSolo app or via Tidal Connect and Spotify Connect. It’s as smooth as butter—I’ve given it a hard time, and it never lagged or stuttered. A hiccup here or there required reconnection via the EverSolo Controller app, but otherwise, it ran flawlessly for the two weeks of testing.
• Versatile DAC: Not just a streaming wonder, the DMP-A8 flaunts a remarkable standalone DAC. It’s more than an upgrade from the DMP-A6; it competes toe-to-toe with dedicated DACs under the $2K mark. A comparison? It outperforms the SMSL VMV D1se2 and D2, the Topping D70 Octo, and even the Aune S9C. The sound grew on me, resembling the formidable Gustard A26. Seriously, in a blind test, distinguishing between the DMP-A8 and the Gustard A26 is a tough ask.
• Dedicated Line Amplifier: Ah, the rarity! Most DACs below the $2K range don’t have a dedicated line amplifier circuit. DMP-A8, however, gifts you up to 10 dB of analog gain. With integrated amplifiers out of my picture, I’ve been traveling the power amp road. Witnessing a proper line amplifier in the DMP-A8? Well, that’s pure excitement. Even though I’m wielding a more expensive standalone preamp, seeing such a feature-packed unit is a delight.
• Streaming Prowess: It’s not just another streamer. Apart from handling proprietary apps, the DMP-A8 offers Tidal & Spotify Connect and works as a Roon endpoint. While it’s still awaiting its official Roon Ready certification, it doesn’t shy away from doing the Roon endpoint job. A Roon server and additional HiFi systems? The convenience of an extra Roon endpoint is golden, consolidating favorites from Tidal, Qobuz, and offline music into one harmonious hub.
• Music Server Capabilities: Step aside, streaming—here comes the beauty of offline listening. Slot in a flash drive via the USB OTG port, add a high-capacity M.2 SSD, and voila! Disconnect from streaming and rediscover the joy of offline music. Roon users, your offline tunes are also Roon-ready. All this in one package!
Even without experiencing the DMP-A8 firsthand, it’s an impressive value proposition. For anyone eyeing the future of HiFi, this is not only a fantastic starting point but possibly the final stop. It’s a comprehensive solution for streaming enthusiasts that won’t dent your wallet.
I. EverSolo DMP-A8 in a Headphone Setup
As much as I love my stereo setup with every cell of my body, I wanted to skip room acoustics and have a better sense of its technical performance and overall tuning, so I’m grabbing it and I’m hooking it to the Enleum AMP-23R that will be driving a pair of HiFiMan Susvara. I removed my dedicated streamer and DAC closed my eyes, and started listening to a lengthy playlist.
Just a day before, I had a similar encounter with its smaller brother and as much as I like its internal streamer and ease of ease, I must confess that I was not the biggest fan of its internal DAC and preamp. Don’t get me wrong, the ESS Sabre setup was still clean and highly resolving, but it didn’t make me move to the rhythm of the music, it was kind of boring sounding to me. I stood still waiting for that magical moment to arrive…but it never came.
When DMP-A8 replaced it, a substantial shift in tonality rang through my ears. What was once ultra-linear, flat, and somewhat uninspiring, transformed into a sweet and silky-smooth sounding unit that offered a delightful experience during extended listening sessions. Besides a midrange sweetening effect and an omnipresent low-end across all my tunes, I observed that the outlines of the notes were no longer razor-sharp, replaced with a newfound richness that wasn’t present before. The Susvara, not known for being smooth and relaxing in their stock form, usually demand considerable time and effort to reach that stage. Yet, the DMP-A8 together with the Enleum showcased the best of the Susvara, warming me inside, considering the efforts invested in making them sound great. Wondering if perhaps my morning coffee was weaving some magic, after seeing my kid off to school, I resumed my listening session, focusing mainly on acoustic music like blues and jazz.
Given my experience with most AKM-based DACs of today, I anticipated a somewhat sweeter and richer presentation, but the DMP-A8 took it even further. When The Waters Rising by Oceans Of Slumber (Tidal / Qobuz) began playing and my head started nodding, I realized that if this unit could do justice to aggressive and treble-intensive music, then it could do justice to anything.
Challenge accepted! Some of the darkest tunes emerged minutes later, usually reserved for R2R DACs that handle forward and bright-sounding tracks with ease. It was no longer surprising that Haggard and Therion sounded precisely as I remembered from my university years. I paused for a moment, adding a few albums, I reclined my chair, and let the music play uninterrupted for two hours straight.
The signs in the clouds don’t lie, for I saw Apollo, Meret, Bragi, Ianuaria, Veles, and Sünu serenading tunes in the sky. I’m pleased to report that EverSolo re-tuned and reimagined the sound of their premier unit, pursuing the muse all along, infusing emotion where it was absent, and making the listening experience quite mesmerizing. Music isn’t merely about technical perfection; it’s about conveying and receiving messages and I must say, I formed a profound connection with the DMP-A8.
II. EverSolo DMP-A8 in a Stereo Setup
On the next day, I removed the Rockna Wavedream NET, Wavedream Signature DAC, and the Chord Ultima 3 preamplifier – an ensemble that collectively costs about ~18 times the price of the DMP-A8. I let the little matte-black fellow work its magic as a 3-in-1 unit, connecting it to a Chord Ultima 5 power amplifier that pumped sound into a pair of KEF Reference 3 loudspeakers, so I could have a better grip over its sound.
The volume went lower, there was less headroom compared to my usual rig and it felt like I didn’t have a power-overwhelming setup anymore, since the Rockna outputs a Dacian 7V signal versus a weaker 4.2V signal coming from the EverSolo. However, the sonic experience I had the day before followed me into the living room. Dynamics weren’t the craziest, the low end wasn’t the most controlled and some of the smallest intricacies went missing in action, but goddamn! That overflowing sweetness, note separation, and music’s motion were on par with my setup.
A few hours later in the evening, I invited my beloved to sit and share the musical experience with me. Effortless was the first word she told me. Maybe it’s not the most remarkable skill of the DMP-A8, but you feel your brain relaxing, getting an unchallenging music playback, wrapping us in an easy-going manner. The notes were rich, bold, and well defined, but light-footed and airy, as if it knew in advance that a big drum was going to follow that should scare us and the cymbals should turn our heads. It materialized an instant surge of vigor, giving you a feeling that music is not oozing from the same source. Believe it or not, we constantly turned our heads to our right and left, looking in amazement for the source of the sound. An instinctive reaction, trying to understand where the sound was coming from, as at that point my mind couldn’t understand from where the music was oozing, even if we had the speakers right in front of us.
You already know me well (I hope), I’m quite a dynamics junkie, the transient response guy as people tend to call me. Regardless of what I’m tinkering around with my systems, I always have this wild desire to turn it to eleven! To make it even punchier, harder slamming, scarier in terms of dynamics than how it was before. Although my statement setup was already built around these principles and you will have a hard time beating it in there, I was surprised that the much more affordable DMP-A8 wasn’t seriously lagging in the dynamics department. My need for speed senses weren’t triggered, I admitted that it was good enough. With that out of the way, the sheer kick and slam were on a (much) higher level compared to its smaller sibling. The bass didn’t duck in a corner, it was no longer shy, getting more confident this time around, even cocky in a way, shining all around like a rock star. So yeah, I let it hit me one more time, turning my face for another round. Audiophile beatings? Sign me up for three!
III. Stream Me, Baby!
On the third day, I wanted to try out its streaming capabilities…just as a streamer and nothing more, adding a Rockna Wavedream Signature via that magical I2S connection and firing up my wacky playlist one last time. Soulville by The Ben Webster Quintet started playing (Tidal / Qobuz), transporting me back in time, begging me to light up a cigar, have a whisky on the rocks, and just…be there, applaud and cheer for the band. The timbre and texture of the music, especially in blues and jazz are the most important skills. If your source can’t create a natural timbre and put plenty of meat on the bone, then old smoky blues will sound sackless de puta madre, hollow, nasal, or plain fake. Nobody wants that. Closing my eyes and letting the energy flow, I could almost feel the smell in the recording room, I could feel the texture of the double bass, and the smell of spruce and basswood could be felt in the air…spiced up with just a bit of ivory that added mass and presence to piano notes. While I’m not describing a veritable R2R DAC (that will happen in two weeks from now), the voices, the textures, the contours, and the timbres were almost R2R-like in nature. I would go to greater lengths and mention that I could almost see the music in colors. While this isn’t the most technical sounding unit as a whole versus unobtanium units that can cost an arm and a leg, DMP-A8 was able to transmit the emotion of the vocalists, the weeping of guitars, and the sorrow of violins. Isn’t this the final quest that a do-it-all unit should conquer at the end of the day?
I decided to bypass my Roon Server, and let it play just as a streamer with its casting function which is so convenient to use. If you don’t want to interact with the EverSolo app, feel free to use Tidal Connect or Spotify Connect, which worked flawlessly in my case. Since the streamer can have a major impact on the DAC that follows, I was prepared for anything. Gateway To The Spirit World (Tidal / Qobuz) started playing, which is an experimental psychedelic chillout, mixing electronica, funk, and lots of percussion all around. Although this is a very simple track, the bass lines raising in intensity and then fading away slowly always keep you awake. This track is all about transients, decay of the notes, note separation, soundstage, and stereo imaging. I experienced a few not-so-impressive streamers when it comes to layering and note separation, but luckily, DMP-A8 is not one of them. The ability to portray a big picture is usually reserved for end-game streamers that have an over-engineered power supply. Although I’m not describing a 15-kilo unit, EverSolo’s best did shoo away the cloudiness and let me focus on things playing in the background. I could see a clear picture of where everything was located in the living room. The layering was great, there was enough void space in between the notes, the sound was extended above the borders of the living room and all the electronic beats were loud and clear. Even the most crowded passages weren’t exactly…crowded, never overlapping on top of each other for an ugly mess.
It performed so well as a streamer, that I consider moving the Rockna stack to the headphone setup (where they were destined to sit) and letting the DMP-A8 stream music directly to a Chord Electronics DAVE DAC. It’s good enough for my setup and I’m sure it would be more than enough for yours.
IV. An Important Comparison
You are here for a comparison, isn’t it? You own the DMP-A6 and you want to know if upgrading to the upper echelon makes any sense, isn’t it? Ha! I can read your mind, but I completely understand your concern, so let’s dive in.
EverSolo DMP-A8 ($1980) VS EverSolo DMP-A6 ($859)
I’ll start by mentioning that the DMP-A6 was released around six months ago. Six months of hype, happiness, and retaliation. DMP-A6 changed the game for many of us. Heck, it forever changed the landscape of wired and wireless streamers. The bar was raised so high, that others started adding new features to their streamers, to keep them afloat. In truth, DMP-A6 succeeded not because it sounded good, far from it! Lots of folks don’t even care for the sound as I do. Many bought it for the rich feature set, that’s right! I have two friends who wanted a wireless streamer and a DAC so they could feed their active speakers sitting in the office and living room. They use Spotify which (still) isn’t lossless, but you know what? They didn’t care a single bit. DMP-A6 looked great, it could be controlled via a smartphone, and it has Spotify and Tidal Connect, so everybody was happy…except for me.
I raved about the DMP-A6 not because it sounded great, but because it had the right feature set and price point. The price-to-performance ratio was so fricking high, that I foresaw great things coming from the EverSolo team.
While I’m very glad that a much nicer unit came out from the EverSolo labs, which injected dopamine into our auditory experience, while adding some quality-of-life improvements that I was asking for six months (an I2S output), I’m a little sad that DMP-A8 came out exactly six months after the release of DMP-A6. Maybe you own the DMP-A6 for a month or two and while undeniably, the DMP-A8 is better at everything it does, I’ll be much happier if the DMP-A8 came out in the Spring of 2024. The tick-tock upgrade cycles went from once in a year, to once in six months, and who knows, maybe we’ll be forced to upgrade once in three months, it’s that so, Xiaomi?
Don’t get me wrong, please. I’m not mad at EverSolo, not a single bit! I’m happy that such a product exists, but I’m unhappy about the newest smartphone trends that are slowly crawling into audiophilia. I’m skipping every second Topping and SMSL Audio release because there are (way) too many new products on the horizon…and this unhealthy cycle needs to stop. I cherish audio manufacturers that create a clear upgrade path, which is the case with the EverSolo. A8 is exactly what A6 wasn’t: a considerably smoother, organic, and life-like sounding unit, while further polishing the feature set. I have a single desire and hopefully, my words will be heard, EverSolo, please don’t discontinue the A6 and the A8 for a long time, let them live and prosper. Release software updates and solve minor issues, but let them live a little longer, as both units are already outperforming the competition. Let them catch up, and improve their products, many are already challenging themselves to get at least a slice of that big ‘n fat DMP-A6/8 pie.
With that out of the way. The comparison is really, a very simple one. If you are one of my friends who listens to MP3 tunes via Spotify, then rest assured, DMP-A6 is more than good enough and I wouldn’t change it for anything. However, if you are a hardcore audiophile and you want the very best, compromises aren’t defining you as a person, if you get the Ferrari instead of the Porsche, then DMP-A8 is definitely for you! DMP-A6 is clean sounding, and quite linear, but ultimately flat and not as involving as A8 is. The younger sibling is more musical at everything it does, not only as an all-in-one but also as a DAC-only or streamer unit. The sound is fuller, considerably richer, more textured, heavier, ballsier, more dynamic and explosive sounding. A8 has a strong kick in the lowest octaves, adding lots of body and sweetness in the midrange area, things that weren’t there on the A6. The sound widened, there were additional layers or sounds, and finally, the stereo image was clear like the blue sky. The sound seems bigger on all axes and you’ll feel that not only in your stereo but also in your headphone setup.
Probably the biggest upgrade is that you no longer need to attach a dedicated DAC and Preamp to the newest unit, as it already performs like the last DAC, Preamp, and streamer that you’ll ever need. Attach a power amp or an integrated amp to it, and voilà! A top-notch minimalist setup that even your spouse will approve of. Can you imagine how many months I negotiated with my beloved until I ended up with a dedicated rack filled with electronics? You don’t wanna know!
I’ve been enjoying all the additional features, including the I2S output to hook up my best DAC. This do-it-all gizmo is incredibly versatile. I don’t believe there is a feature that DMP-A8 doesn’t already have or won’t have shortly, like the Roon Ready certification. It possesses the most complete set of skills and features I’ve seen in a long time, especially when considering the price point. This is a slam dunk from EverSolo and I’m very excited to see what is coming next. I’ll remind you that this is a very well-made wired & wireless streamer, DAC, dedicated preamp, music server, and Roon endpoint, all performing above my expectations.
We finally got a physical remote control that you needed to buy separately for the DMP-A6, we finally have an I2S output that was previously missing, the I/V conversion and output stage are finally powered by a linear transformer, we have a dedicated line amplifier circuit, an over-the-top R2R volume control and obviously, the Velvet Sound Technology of AKM chips are welcome additions to the family. When I saw the internals, all the components, and the feature set, I already knew that it would be bonkers and it didn’t disappoint a single bit. The build quality is fantastic, the App control is flawless, its big screen is always nice to look at, and the DSP settings that EverSolo implemented could fine-tune your system according to your needs. I’m a purist at heart, so the DSPs and EQs aren’t exactly for me, hence not covering any of that, but if you like playing with PEQ, FIR filters, loudness, compression, low and high pass filters, then DMP-A8 is offering all of that by default, getting my stamp of approval and the highest honors.
EverSolo DMP-A8 will set you off €/$1980 and you can get it from your local EverSolo dealer. In case you’re getting one, please let me know in the comments section below, and don’t forget to smash that subscribe button over YouTube. Until next time folks!
- Simple & minimalist & future-fi
- Outstanding build quality, excellent I/O options
- Impressive component selection and power supply implementation
- This is the most feature-packed all-in-one unit we tried as of yet! There isn’t a function that DMP-A8 doesn’t already have
- Clean and highly resolving DAC section that spiced and sweetened the sound
- Outstanding timbre & tonality, going with an organic and natural presentation, instead of an ultra-linear one found on its smaller sibling
- Having a dedicated preamp section, you could easily bypass a preamp
- Great sound staging capabilities, getting layered and 3D-sounding
- On par with dedicated DACs at the same price point
- Sounds fun and technical at the same time
- The I2S output is a game changer
- Although pricey, I still consider it a bargain
- Plasticky remote control
- Roon Ready certification isn’t so ready (yet)
- DACs: Rockna Wavedream Signature XLR, Chord Electronics DAVE, Note DS-10 Plus
- Wireless Streamer & Music Server: EverSolo DMP-A8, DMP-A6, Rockna Wavedream NET
- Roon Core: Rockna Wavedream NET
- Headphone Amps: Trafomatic Primavera, Enleum AMP-23R, Ferrum OOR + HYPSOS, Burson Soloist 3X GT, Flux Lab Acoustics Volot
- Preamps: Chord Electronics Ultima 3 Pre
- Power Amps: Chord Electronics Ultima 5, Burson Timekeeper 3X GT (x2)
- Loudspeakers: KEF Reference 3, Raidho TD 2.2 (incoming)
- Full-sized headphones: HiFiMan Susvara, Audivina, Ananda Nano, Erzetich Charybdis & Phobos V.2021, Meze Elite & 109 PRO, Sennheiser HD800S, Kennerton Rognir & Vali, Apos Caspian, Sendy Peacock & Apollo, HarmonicDyne Poseidon & others
- Interconnects: Crystal Cable Reference2 Diamond, QED Reference (x2), Topping TCX1 (x2)
- USB Cables: Supra USB Excalibur (x2), Chord C-USB, Matrix Hi-Fi USB
- HDMI Cables: Supra 8K HDMI 2.1 (x2)
- Speaker cables: Kimber PR8, Audioquest Type4
- Power Cables: Isotek EVO3 Premier (x3), iFi Audio SupaNova (x2)
- Balanced Isolation Power Conditioners: PLiXiR Elite BAC1500 (stereo setup), Elite BAC400 (headphone setup)