Shure SHA900 Amplifier / DAC for Earphones and Headphones
SHA900 is the first portable DAC that is designed to properly drive both headphone and earphones with linearity, stability and consistency. It includes all the features of the KSE1500DAC and is compatible with all earphones and headphones utilizing a 1/8" connector.
The premium, standalone SHA900 Portable Listening Amplifier features a USB digital-to-analog-converter (DAC) that converts analog or digital audio from portable digital audio sources and computers. For use with high-quality headphones and earphones, the SHA900 features a 24 bit/ 96 kHz conversion rate, customizable 4-band parametric EQ with five standard and 4 user-defined settings, rechargeability and input level meters. The SHA900 can process both digital audio directly via micro-USB, analog via a direct line in, or bypass entirely for a pure analog signal without conversion. The SHA900 defines a new standard of portable listening that brings high-fidelity audio into the mobile demands of today’s active lifestyles.
• 4-band Parametric EQ features five preset settings and four customizable settings to maximize audio playback fidelity.
• Enhanced Audio Control provides additional user-friendly options to maximize audio playback fidelity
• Streamlined controls for quick and simple navigation throughout the SHA900 settings
• Multiple output gain structures optimized for both headphones and earphones
• Integrated USB rechargeable battery can conveniently charge from provided wall charger or computer, even when streaming USB audio from computer
• Compatible with Mac, PC, iOS and Android devices via included accessory assortment, featuring Micro-B to Lightning™ and Micro-B OTG cables
• Premium Shure fit and finish and construction featuring an elegantly machined aluminum housing, manufactured to exacting Shure quality standards
1. The SHA900 can process both digital and analog input signals? What is the benefit of having both DAC and ADC functionality?
The SHA900 contains both DAC and ADC conversion, providing the flexibility to be used for both digital and analog inputs. The digital‐to‐analog converter (DAC) allows for a digital audio signal to be converted from binary signal (1s and 0s) into the analog audio waveform that represents the original sound of the program material. The analog‐to‐digital Converter (ADC) allows an analog source input to be converted into digital signal which can then be routed through the digital DSP (EQ) and then convert it back to analog after processing using the DAC.
2. Aren’t both headphones and earphones used with current products in the marketplace?
Competitive products in the marketplace have been referred to as “headphone amplifiers” for a reason – they have typically been focused on consumers using premium headphones, and have designed their amplifiers to perform accordingly to properly drive such high impedance products. While earphones could be used, as low‐ impedance products they would susceptible to poor performance due to the mismatched impedance. With the SHA900, Shure took care to ensure that earphone performance was of equal development consideration, using premium SE846 earphones as the gold standard to reference for the amplifier’s design and performance.
3. Is it safe to use the SHA900 while charging?
Yes, the SHA900 is designed for use while charging from a laptop or the provided power supply.
4. Is it safe to charge the SHA900 with a portable battery bank?
The SHA900 can be charged by battery pack with the following specifications: 5V, 500mA min, 2A max input, max current draw at 1A.
5. What is the difference between the parametric EQ in SHA900 when compared with the EQ function in iTunes and other music apps?
While some currently available programs and apps use parametric style EQ, most of them use a simpler graphic (or fixed frequency) equalizer which only allows for a limited range of frequency bands. Although the graphic EQ are simpler, the parametric EQ allows more customizable settings.
6. Why does the SHA900 include both five fixed EQ profiles and four used‐defined EQ settings?
Inclusion of both sets of EQ profiles provide a large number of options for customizing the listening experience. The fixed profiles were set to address common adjustments made by the user ‐ flat, low boost, vocal boost, and loudness are standard EQ settings that help accommodate both the user’s preferences and any idiosyncratic characteristics of the recording.
Beyond that, the user‐defined EQ settings are available if the user wishes to specifically accommodate or adjust some specific aspect of the audio quality to match a personal preference based again upon the mix balance of the audio playing. Additionally, a global EQ tweak may be preferred due to a specific quality of the source media player.
7. For the user‐defined EQ settings, what will happen if, say, point 2 is swept after point 3 (point 2 at 4KHz, point 3 at 1KHz)? What about if points overlap, with point 1 at 500Hz +4dB and point 2 at 500Hz +5dB ‐ does this result in a combined +9dB at 500Hz or is there a maximum cap?
Filter points 1 and 4 will never overlap each other, but points 1,2,3, or 2,3,4 can overlap, and the frequency changes of overlapping filters will sum together, though the graphic representation on the screen will only visually show ±6 dB of change. Overlapped points will add together, however the display screen will not show anything past 6 dB of change. In a normal situation, 6 dB of gain or reduction is plenty, but the EQ will boost or cut more than that if two filter points are together.
8. An audio file with a 96 kHz sample rate is automatically down‐converted to a 44.1 kHz sample rate when played from IOS or Android device. Can this be bypassed so that files with a sample rate of 96 kHz files (or even a 192 kHz file) can be listened to with the SHA900?
Portable media devices have some limitations built into them. There are music player apps that will allow a media player such as an iPhone to playback at a 96 kHz sample rate, but the standard iTunes software operating system limits this to 44.1 kHz (which is CD quality). Aside from the limitations of the hardware on a music player, there are also software limitations. There are music player applications that allow audio files with a 96 kHz sample rate to be played. On a computer, there are some media player applications that will play high sample rate files. However Shure has no affiliation with such applications or programs, and do not officially recommend one particular app or program.
Bit Depth 16-bit / 24-bit Sampling Rate 44.1 / 48 / 88.2 / 96 kHz Frequency Response 10 Hz to 50 kHz Signal-to-Noise Ratio up to 107 dB A-weighted Adjustable Gain Range -60 dB to +17 dB THD+N 0.05% (1 kHz) Output Power up to 135 mW +135 mW (16 Ω, 1% THD) up to 95 mW +95 mW (42 Ω, 1% THD) Output Impedance 0.35 Ω Headphone Impedance Range 6 Ω to 600 Ω Limiter Selectable Analog RMS Limiter Equalizer 4-band Parametric USB Input USB Micro-B Receptacle Line-In Input 3.5 mm (1/8") Headphone Output 3.5 mm (1/8") Charging Requirements USB-powered: 5 V/0.5 A to 1 A Housing Chrome Plated Aluminum Net Weight 182.0 g (6.42oz.) Dimensions 111 × 59 × 21 mm H × W × D
Battery Type Rechargeable Li-Ion Nominal Voltage 3.6V DC Battery Life Analog in (BYPASS EQ mode): up to 10 hours USB Input (EQ mode): up to 7 hours Battery Charging Temperature Range 0 to 45 °C (32 to 113 °F) Operating Temperature Range -18 to 57 °C (0 to 135 °F)
Made for iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPhone 5, iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3, iPad Air, iPad mini 2, iPad (4th generation), iPad mini, iPod touch (5th generation) The Shure SHA900 Portable Listening Amplifier is compatible with Android devices that support USB Audio Class 2.0 and Micro-B OTG (On-The-Go) connectivity. Not all Android devices are compatible. Android is a trademark of Google Inc.
Summary of Customer Ratings & Reviews
This amplifier is nothing short of fantastic! This provides the most impressive sound quality and detail I have EVER heard from a portable amplifier when used with high-end earphones and headphones. I personally use the SHA900 with the Shure SE846 sound isolating earphones and the Grado PS1000e Professional Series headphones. By themselves, both of these earphones and headphones sound nothing short of sensational, but the Shure SHA900 amplifier makes them sound even better! All I can say is WOW! If you are wondering if this makes ALL music SOUND FANTASTIC, in my opinion it DOES! I use with every genre I own. I own a huge digital musical library, some hi-res and some CD quality, anything from Pop, Rock, Progressive Rock, Classical and even Country ... all sounds GREAT! However this amplifier does bring out the flaws in some low-quality audio formats, understandably. Don't hesitate purchasing this amplifier if you are looking for the most incredible sound and the most detail in every musical note! I HIGHLY RECOMMEND!
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