Muse Electronics Model 2 Plus DACs

4.75/5 (8 Reviews) MSRP : $2500.00


Product Description

DAC


Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating

Reviews 1 - 5 (8 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Belgarchi a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: June 15, 2004

Bottom Line:   
I made a mistake in my rating, and Audiogon still didn't suppress my review. This is to compensate the "3".

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   1996

Price Paid:    $500.00

Purchased At:   Audiogon



Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Belgarchi a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: June 12, 2004

Bottom Line:   
This is a follow-up of my review written 4 years ago. During that time, I tried to replace my combination CD-Player + Muse DAC to save space and simplify connections.
Impossible. I bought maybe 5 (?) different CD-Players, to each time resale them after a few weeks of extensive listening, with different speakers (NHT, B&W Matrix 802, and home-made active tri-amplified) and Sennheiser HD-580 headphones.
The transport used doesn't matter a lot, but the best were CAL Icon II and NAD S500i.
I discovered, too, that Monster Cable M550i are less agressive, more tamed than Monster Cable 400 mk-II, but, believe it or not, the difference was smaller when used with the Muse than with CD-players ! I conclude that, on top of all its other qualities, the Muse doesn't require top-notch cables !

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   1995

Price Paid:    $500.00

Purchased At:   Audiogon



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Ed a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: November 8, 2001

Bottom Line:   
Although I love music and electronics and insist on clarity and detail, I have never subscribed to some of the hype going around about high end equipment. I just don't believe in paying $2000 for an ac power cord or $20,000 for a cd player. I also didn't believe that outboard dacs were going to be any better than built in ones- especially like the Burr Browns built into my Denon 5700.

But in that elusive search for giving my system that something "extra". I decided to try an outboard dac.
First was the Art DI/O some people rave about. Nothing special to me at all. I ordered a CAL Sigma II 24/96 dac based on it's great reviews and while I was waiting ran across a used Muse 2 at a good price. I had barely heard of Muse but they do have a good "high end" reputation.

To make the story short, the Muse sale was delayed for weeks while the CAL Sigma arrived and sounded pretty damn good. While it was not mind bogling, it did impart a greater sense of detail to my system and I was pretty satisfied. The Muse 2 finally showed up and I only took it because I gave my word and planned on immediately selling it for my cost. Of course, I had to listen first, but it was a bother to unhook everything but oh well...

Yeah, when I heard the Muse 2 for the first time my jaw dropped! Never had any component except maybe speakers made such a profound improvement in the sound of music.

I'm sure anyone reading this has heard this a 100 times, all I can say is- try it yourself.

First, every nuiance, every plucked string, every swish of a cymbal is perfectly and absolutely clear and distinct.
Vocals are deep, well defined, and crystal clear.
Bass is tight, controlled, and never obtrusive.
But the most noticeable effect- NO NOISE, NO HUM, NO STATIC, no matter how high the volume. The backgrougd is black hole deep.

I take back every thing I said about expensive high end stuff. The Muse 2 turned my world upside down and completely changed my thinking. I am seeking out over Muse products: a Model 5 transport and Model 3 preamp.

This equipment is available for a steal.

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   1995

Price Paid:    $500.00

Purchased At:   Audiogon (used)



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Ed a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: October 31, 2001

Bottom Line:   
I had the opportunity to audition the ART DI/O along with a new CAL Sigma II with 24/96 upgrade and a used Muse Model 2 with Bessler filter this past weekend. Joining me were two friends, one an audio buff, and the other just a casual listener.
All 3 DACs were connected via coax digital cable to a Pioneer PD-59 except the CAL where an optical cable was used per mfg's recommendation. The DAC were then connected via direct analog connection to a Denon 5700 which fed a Bryston 4B-ST.

Music selections were Lorrena McKennit "The Visitor" - All Soul's Night.
Diana Krall "The Look of Love". Vanessa Mae "Storm". Chris Isaak "Wicked Games"

The ART came first and was impressive for it's cost. Various settings were tried and most agreed that the X2 sampling 88.2k sounded best. This DAC certainly equaled (and bettered on most tracks) the Pioneer's built in DAC, and the Denon 5700 built in DAC. Which is an accomplishment considering the Denon uses Burr Brown chips. To be completely honest however some people drifted back and forth on the Denon vs the ART.

The CAL Sigma was next and this unit clearly had it's favorites. The casual listener and myself both thought it superior to the ART but my other friend still liked the ART better. To me the CAL Sigma portrayed a clearer, cleaner, and more defined sound. I thought instruments were better separated and the soundstage wider by about a foot in my smallish listening room.

It appeared the CAL Sigma heavier power supply and tube circuitry gave a sweeter more pleasing sound.

There was more disagreement on other tracks. McKennit's seemed to favor the CAL Sigma while Krall sounded better on the ART DI/O. But still, considering the price difference $250 retail vs $750 retail it was interesting. I think tube proponents would choose the CAL Sigma though.

Then the Muse, which a friend had lent me, took it's turn. We all assumed this unit's age would hurt it (it was built in 97) and it's technology was behind the times. This unit retailed for $2000 in it's time, but was purchased used for $500- on a parity with the CAL Sigma.

What a surprise! The Muse just blew away the other two. The difference was nothing short of amazing. Everyone agreed without question it was clearly better. The casual listener pointed out the definition, the soundstage and how she could pick out every instrument across the width of the room, and I had to agree. The soundstage extended from wall to wall and seemingly from front to rear, but the detail was truely astonishing.

I have never heard a component (besides speakers) make such an improvement.

In conclusion, all the DACs were good, and I believe each would have their fans. The ART DI/O has a lot of features for someone who records a lot and for the price is certainly a steal. The CAL Sigma would be loved by tube fans. But for me the Muse uis a keeper. I will now have to figure out how to con it away from my friend (who hasn't actually heard it yet!)

This experience also taught me what good buys are out there in the used market. If you have a large cd collection, what difference does it make if the DAC isn't state of the art?

The Muse is truely a steal at $500 used, buy it and you'll never be sorry!

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   1997

Price Paid:    $500.00

Purchased At:   Audiogon (used)



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Yves Simon a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: August 6, 2000

Bottom Line:   
I bought, used, a Muse Model 2 with HDCD digital filter and 4th order Bessel analog filter installed.
The sound ? Wonderful ! No weakness, and really exceptional for its neutrality and absence of agressivity. Everything else is excellent, anyway ! Was "Class B, borderline Class A" in Stereophile magazine.
The differences between Model 2 and Model 2 Plus :
- AES/EBU inputs : standart in Model 2 Plus, option in
Model 2
- Bessel Filter : standart in Model 2 Plus, option in Model
2. Highly recommended by Stereophile.
- I2S Digital input : Model 2 Plus only. Would be the
absolute weapon against jitter. You need a Muse transport
to use it.
- HDCD : optional with Model 2 and Model 2 Plus. I
recommend it : the PMD-100 digital filter is excellent
with AND WITHOUT HDCD CDs.
- Price : Model 2 without options, $ 1700. Model 2 Plus
with HDCD, $ 2700
I love it !

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   1995




Reviews 1 - 5 (8 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating



Magneplanar:



Magneplanar: