So I was at CanJam just recently and one of the the booths that stood out to me was the VANA booth, the NA distributor for Atlas Cables and Ferrum Audio products. I’ve heard of their stuff before but haven’t really looked into them until recently.
The Ferrum HYPSOS (995 USD) is a unique kind of PSU that I haven’t seen anywhere else. What makes it different is the variable voltage and the fact that you can select which one sounds best. It also has a list of compatible products in its menu system that match up with their specs automatically, with a manual mode for unlisted products. It was honestly pretty cool to see this in action and a fascinating sight indeed.
The Ferrum OOR (1995 USD) is their standalone hp amp. From my brief impressions at CanJam, it sounded very clean, natural, and detailed. That was with the HYPSOS paired to it. In fact, it made such an impression on me that when I arrived home I looked at my Soloist and wished that it was the OOR that had been in its place. By the way, the HYPSOS looks like it’s compatible with the Soloist, so there’s that.
If you look at their product page there’s a lot of marketing terms thrown around in there but I can honestly say that this was an impressive unit.
Build quality was outstanding! I saw a GSX-mini over at the other booth and much preferred the build on the Ferrum stuff. It was also absolutely stunning to look at.
The representative at VANA told me they would be coming out with a DAC/AMP very soon and then higher-end models forthcoming.
All in all this should be a really solid SS option for those in the market. I have a Burson Soloist and I briefly listened to a GSX-mini. I preferred the Ferrum stuff over both. I’d be lying if I said this wasn’t on my shortlist of SS amps. This should be very interesting!
I was searching for the Hypsos along with the Powerlink cable from Ferrum and Headphones.com is listed in their dealer list. But could only find the OOR. Is it out of stock? Any ETA? I’d prefer to buy from here. @taronlissimore
In fact, I want the combo (OOR, Hypsos, Power Link) and I’d rather not go the A46 route. Had bad experience. So, I can wait. Thanks.
Like a top chef who uses his ingredients freshly and grown from his own garden, we integrated parts of the awarded HYPSOS technology and lend some of OOR’s magic to lay the first bricks for ERCO. Then we proceeded to add our culminated 20 years’ worth of experience in making DA converters. And man, did we pull it off. We managed to get the best out of our two winners and put it in our new sibling, adding awesome DA conversion to the mix.
I would like to know what all they are doing for the da process. Given they realy want you to use usb the implementation and jitter will be important. Plus, tbh, if they aren’t doing any processing off chip (be it noise shaping/upsampling/etc) I kinda can’t see it being competitive at that price. I mean with the whole stack we are looking real real close to tt2 pricing.
Not sure you would need the HYPSOS - it says they took the best of the OOR and HYPSOS and added a DAC, so I’m guessing they’re marketing it as a less expensive alternative to the OOR/HYPSOS stack. And an AIO.
Ferrum’s parent company, HEM, partnered with Mytek to design and build their DACs. I’m not sure if they’re still partners but they did build the Brooklyn DAC, which used the ESS 9028 Pro chip.
I’m taking a guess here, but I imagine they wanted to leverage their knowledge of the 9028 PRO, and with existing stock of the chip in their factory, perhaps take advantage of economies of scale, especially if the newer ESS chip has no sonic advantage, as @splayname suggests.
I thought this would be the reply but still for a new product at that price using a chip that is 7 years old is a bit strange to me. Surely there is some sonic advantages for using the newer chip.
Bit off-putting for buyers perspective in my opinion.
Honestly, I’m way more off put by their processing not being mentioned. Generaly to be competitive as a dac in this price range there is a lot going on off the chip such as unique filtering and upsampling (ayre has some great podcasts if you are interested). The fact that no extra steps are mentioned bodes worse in my mind than using the old chip