VIOLECTRIC DHA V590 Review

Violectric DHA V590

Today we look at the Violectric DHA V590, which is selling for €3.281,73 Euro.

 

Disclaimer: Violectric sent us the DHA V590 via cma.audio for the purpose of this review, I bought the unit from them after a few weeks.

Violectric

Long time Headfonia readers know we’re a bit of Violectric/Lake People/Niimbus fans here. If you’re not familiar with the brands, I suggest reading up on the previous reviews or you can check out the company’s bio on their website or on CMA’s Violectric page.

Lake People (now part of CMA Audio) established the Violectric brand in 2009 to offer specialist equipment for the hi-fi market. Its goal is to offer music lovers with high standards in sound quality and design aesthetics the chance to enjoy the outstanding quality of audio circuitry engineered for the Lake People brand.

The architect behind these two brands is Fried Reim. All Violectric products are driven by real-world advances in electronics design rather than fantastical, esoteric marketing promises. “Our products are aimed at pragmatists,” he says. This approach is reflected in the aesthetics of the Violectric range and its simple yet elegant design.

Violectric & co on Headfonia

I myself have reviewed the V100, V200, V281, V800 and V850. Dave reviewed the Lake People units for us and he has covered the RS02, RS08, G109S and RS06. I have also reviewed the Niimbus US4+ amplifier. We loved them all. Violectric’s, LP’s and Niimbus’ popularity has only increased in the last few years and each time you see them at the shows – like in Munich – they seem to become bigger and bigger. Violectric is now being managed by CMA.AUDIO, a German company representing many brands.

I first reviewed a Violectric unit back in November 2011. The V100 was so good I immediately bought it from Violectric. One and a half year later I reviewed its bigger brother the V200 and surely enough, I bought the unit. I can’t remember who I sold the V100 to but I’m convinced someone is still enjoying the hell out of it. After I did the V281 review, I bought that one and I sold my V200. The V281 is still in my possession, as is the Niimbus US4+. They’re just too good to let go.

After the V281 was released, it was quiet for some time but then Violectric came back in full force with a whole series of new and updated units. You can find all of them here: https://www.cma.audio/en/violectric

The unit we’re looking at in this article is the Violectric DHA V590. Let’s dive in!

Violectric DHA V590

Violectric DHA V590 – Versatility & Main features

The DHA V590 is the new top of the range unit in the Violectric line-up. It, according to Violectric, offers a state-of-the-art D/A converter and a headphone amplifier. The D/A converter is a new development and includes a 32-bit resampler / reclocker and two 32-bit D/A converters per channel. The latest findings from the multiple test winners from Violectric and Niimbus were implemented in the headphone amplifier.

You can find out all about the DHA V590 on its dedicated web page here (https://www.cma.audio/en/categories/headphones/headphone-amps/violectric-dha-v590) but let’s quickly go over its most important features.

The Violectric DHA V590 isn’t only a headphone amplifier but it’s also a pre-amplifier as well as a DAC. So the V590 is what we like to call a full DAC/AMP combo, with pre-amp allowing you to use it as a headphone amp but you can also hook it up to your power amplifier, a different headphone amplifier or your active speakers.

Low noise: Violectric is using a very small amount of internal gain and this makes the amplifier’s self-generated noise inaudible. More on that later in the part on sound.

Headphones. Because of a high output voltage (through 50 V internal operating voltage), the amplifier is suited for high-impedance headphones deserving high output voltage swing. But because of its high output power, the DHA V590 is also perfectly suited for headphones with low impedances as well as orthodynamic/planar magnetic headphones. More on this on our part on synergy.

Amplification-wise the V590 has four powerful amps offering 5500 mW Pmax into 50 Ohm and 21 V RMS into 600 Ohm. DAC-wise the DHA V590 has 2 x 32 bit D/A converters per channel (AKM AK4137EQ up-sampling chip) with -112 dB THD+N and 120 dB dynamic range. The V590 has 32 Bit Resampling / Reclocking with 180 dB dynamic range. (Modes: Off / x 1 / x 2 / x 4 / Best)

To make the DHA V590 even easier to use, Violectric has added a stylish remote control, milled from a solid piece of aluminum. Via infrared rays you have access to motorized volume control, mute, input selection, resampling settings, Headphone and line-out control. The volume control on the standard V590 version sports a Stereo 100K ALPS RK27 motorized potentiometer.

There also is a Pro version of this model, and this one includes a 256 step relais.

Violectric DHA V590

Violectric DHA V590 – Inputs & Outputs

If you’re looking for an all-in-one unit, the DHA V590 is one you’ll love.

The V590 offers 3 analogue stereo inputs (2 x unbalanced via RCA, 1 x balanced via XLR- and 4 digital inputs (balanced, coax, optical with 24 bit and 192 kHz capability, USB with up to 32 bits and up to 384 kHz for PCM signals, DSD 64 – 256).

Output-wise the DHA V590 features two single ended headphone outputs with 6,3 mm jack and 1 balanced output with 4-pin XLR. It sports a 1 x unbalanced line-out via RCA and one balanced output via XLR. For both the amplification as the pre-amp part, the V590 offers a +/- 18 dB Pre-Gain for a perfect match of the DHA V590 between source and headphones.

The DHA V590 has so many awesome options and technical features, that it’s impossible to talk about all of them in this article. For the full list of possibilities, specs and features – as well as the explanation on how they work – we advise you to check out the very detailed DHA V590 user manual. You can download it from this link: https://bit.ly/3d92eJ0

When looking at the V281 and US4+, the DHA V590 is more like the Niimbus.

The article continues on the second page. Use the jumps below or simply click here.

Page 2: https://www.headfonia.com/violectric-dha-v590-review/2

Page 3: https://www.headfonia.com/violectric-dha-v590-review/3

Page 4: https://www.headfonia.com/violectric-dha-v590-review/4

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Lieven is living in Europe and he's the leader of the gang. He's running Headfonia as a side project next to his full time day job in Digital Marketing & Consultancy. He's a big fan of tube amps and custom inear monitors and has published hundreds of product reviews over the years.

8 Comments

  • Reply April 2, 2021

    MhtLion

    Great review! Surely the best review on Violectric, any Violectrics. I purchased v281 after reading your review. Does your unit has the upgraded volume pot? I wonder if it is worth extra $600.

    • Reply April 7, 2021

      Lieven

      Thanks. Yes it does, as said in the article. IS it worth it, well it’s an improvement but doesn’t have an impact on the SQ

  • Reply April 3, 2021

    James Marino

    Excellent article!

    Glad to see some new reviews on Violectric gear. For awhile the company seemed to be
    languishing, however, they have come back strong with their new line of amp\dac\preamp
    components; which look to be very competitive within their market segment.

    Recently purchased a V100 based on an older article Lieven wrote, and looking forward to
    using it in my Head-Fi system.

    Cheers! Jim

    • Reply April 7, 2021

      Lieven

      Glad you like it, James 🙂

  • Reply April 4, 2021

    John Herzig

    Hi Lieven, I bought your V200 from you when you sold it and you kindly shipped it all the way to Canada for me. I paired it with a V800 after I received it and have been happily using it on a daily basis. Cheers, John

    • Reply April 6, 2021

      Lieven

      Hi John, good to hear from you. Thank you for the message, I’m really glad to see you’re still loving your Violectric setup. If you want to upgrade to the V281, let me know 😉

  • Reply August 13, 2021

    Renaud

    Hello folks! I enjoy reading this review. I don’t own any Lake People equipment but clearly they seem to know their way around designing a proper amp. 🙂

    Probably because of the shortage on AKM chips, Violectric already replaced these 2 units with V380² and V590². It’s the same amp stage inside but the DAC part is now ESS-based with two ES9026Pro per channel. So it’s a quad-DAC design. The resampling control on the facade is gone too.
    Here is the new units on CMA Audio website :
    https://www.cma.audio/en/categories/headphones/headphone-preamps/violectric-dha-v3802
    https://www.cma.audio/en/categories/headphones/headphone-preamps/violectric-dha-v5902

    It does not make these units less interesting but potential buyers reading this review should be aware of the change.
    I wonder if Headfonia will get a chance at reviewing the new units and comparing it with those short-lived AKM-based combos.

  • Reply August 24, 2021

    JMP

    Hi,

    Great review!

    You mention the Kennerton Thror in the list of headphones tested but nothing later.
    Can you sum up this pairing in a few words please?

    PS: Btw, do you plan to review mk2 EES-based versions ?

    Thanks

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