Lina DAC with EF 1000 & Susvara

Hi, Currently using the Lina DAC with the HiFiman EF1000 & Susvara. My question/issue is with the Voltage setting. I on occasion clip the sound off in the amp on high dynamic music passages. Seems like some kind of safety routine. I have the Lina DAC voltage output at 6V. Is that too high and can that be the cause of tripping the safety feature in the amp?

It sounds like it might be. I couldn’t find it with a quick google just now, but I’d ask HifiMan what the input sensitivity of the EF1000 amp is. If you’re putting beyond that into the amp, then the sound you’re hearing would make sense. (It’ll only be a problem if the actual signal is above that level, though — if you have 6V as your chosen output but the volume turned down it might be fine — but 6V dBFS output means a lot of signal!)

Nice setup by the way. Would love to hear that combo.


Ben’s answer is on the button. When input sensitivity is quoted is isn’t an absolute figure if there is no qualification. What it means is that an input of x volts will result in distortion of y %. That latter part is often not quoted. Whatever, exceeding the quoted input sensitivity results in increasing distortion and eventually clipping may be reached.

Choosing very high input voltages over the specified sensitivity may be preferred but it can be interpreted as the listener deliberately liking increased distortion. That’s OK. It’s their equipment. However it does not necessarily mean that bigger numbers = better.

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  • Input Stage: Vacuum Tube SRPP Circuit
  • Headphone Output for 35 Ohms Load: 20w Pure Class A
  • Amplifier Output for 8 Ohms Load: 50w Pure Class A 100w Class A/B
  • SNR (A weight): 108dB
  • Dynamic Range: 111dB
  • THD: 0.15%
  • Weight & Dimensions:
    These are the stats with a Susvara headphone, in at the 6 volt Lina setting.

None of those are what you need, Anthony.

Not uncommon for manufacturers not to list input sensitivity. Ask them (or your dealer) and you’ll get further details. Unless they’re being coy, of course!

I had the same problem with my Bartók Apex. Some manufactures say the input voltage other don’t like mine. I send an message to the brand and they reply that was no problem.

But actually now I’m using 2v :joy:

Thanks to everyone, very helpful. I’m going to try going down to 2V and see what that does

FYI, all this is with using Roon and selecting fixed volume , not sure if that matters?

Still happens at the 2V setting, so back to the drawing board

It doesn’t sound like a Lina issue. You say that high dynamic passages ( I’ll take to mean loud) cause the amp to “clip” the sound off. I had not realised that the sound actually cuts out if that is what you mean.

I think I understand why you queried if it is a safety issue. I am aware that some devices ( typically phones) have a pre-set output level so as to avoid hearing damage with headphones. There is nothing of this nature with Lina AFIK. Fixed Volume means simply that Roon’s variable volume control is disabled.Volume control levels are then set by the amp i.e. EF1000. I cannot find anything in the literature to indicate that EF1000 has a volume limiting option .

As I currently don’t think this is a Lina issue now that you say a 2V line output from it makes no difference perhaps HiFiMan could advise ? They have a customer contact:

[email protected]

Edit: Since writing the above I have looked again at Lina DAC’s User Manual. I note that the volume control can be locked ( see page 35). I do not know but perhaps this causes your issue? Worthwhile trying the volume control unlocked.

Hi Anthony,

I have the Rossini Apex Player output at 6V to send to my BHSE(an energizer and preamp) to drive the HifiMan Shangri-La Sr. and the output of the BHSE to the EF1000 to drive the Susvara. Both are in XLRs. find it just enough for the BHSE to energize the Shang SR. But a tag too much for the EF1000 and 2V seemed too little. Wish dCS had something in between. Mind you that I am using BHSE as pre amp to EF1000, haven’t tried 2V directly to the EF1000. At 6V, the sound stage and instruments seemed to clutter together.

Hifiman sucks at give out any useful technical information. I have looks forever… even call my dealer and distributor and had no definitive answer. I would set it at 2V and let the EF1000 to drive the Susvara. I am redoing my headphones systems currently is under construction.

Happy listening


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Wrong picture… sorry…

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