501


Echo's End Original "provoked the proverbial tear or two," has "vinyl-like charm," provides "relief from digital harshness."

December, 2019, author: Dawid Grzyb
"LessLoss Echo's End is many things, but surely not a regular DAC. If I had to point my finger at the most minimalist hassle-free machine of this particular sort, today's would be my easy top pick with no afterthoughts."

"Simply put, it was clearly made by people strongly convinced that less is in fact more if done right."

"As a reporter with more than a decade under his black audio belt I've seen and heard dozens of such products, but nothing quite like this publication's purist machine."

"Echo's End doesn't pursue the usual voicing trends but instead it handles music in an unmistakably enchanting way, which well-trained ears will map in a jiffy. It's a very expressive product, with strong and always present character of its own."

"Felt more grounded, rounder and clearly milder."

"Echo's End swiftly redirected my attention from resolution and insight to blackness of its background, general politeness, musical tissue and that particular well-known moist sensation."

"We could narrow this profile down to quite vinyl-like charm or relieving freedom from digital tint and harshness."

"Careful avoidance of excessive fat and warmth, which would undeniably cover details essential in music, is where the Lithuanians truly got the job done right. Echo's End simply didn't sound overly thick, sluggish or bloated, but pleasantly earthy and organic instead. It performed like a vintage top class d/a converter with PCM1704 on-board, albeit with its upper end not trimmed but in perfect check, namely as audible as everything else."

"That's why to my ears the Echo's End introduced no second-grade core flavour in comparison to its far pricier opponent, but something from elsewhere; more substantial and less light-spirited at its core, yet very much appealing on a purely subjective emotional level, enough to provoke the shedding of a proverbial tear or two."

"This review item's sound landed in the zone occupied by quality, chic and maturity, not quantity, exposure and abnormal zeal. All traits listed above effectively turned LessLoss Echo's End into a most pleasing product. Its sound came through undeniably effortlessly and never was piercing. It always felt pleasantly gravitational and coherent yet not even once overdone or extreme in any way."

"I've found this product's sound as focused as it was tactile and euphonic. Its agility and wide dynamic contrasts supported traits which elevated expressiveness and charm."

"Bass [is] internally focused, fabulously elastic, texturally very generous, admirably deep and upon demand capable of hitting like a truck with no apologies involved."

"That's what Echo's End is about, with this machine one's focus will be on qualities related to pleasant undisturbed music flow and not its informational load. Such voicing my ears have found tasteful and yours might as well, should your taste in sound presented in an organic way be a priority."

"Right from the get-go LessLoss Echo's End introduced itself as a great performer for the coin, but in time it flourished into a major overachiever, that's the key takeaway."

"I would not change a single thing in this machine's voicing. Never had I the urge to actually ponder about any potential sonic improvements. Not even once. I've found it simply too vivid, seasoned, coherent and pleasant to bother. Each time the Echo's End was on, I was instantly immersed in its reality and always had a blast, whereas its inherently forgiving approach towards repertoire of lesser quality enabled struggle-free ventures beyond my usual musical diet. If after switching from a product five times as costly - that would be my DAC - all this remained, then that's pretty much all there is to be said."

"Its purposely applied operational minimalism I've found liberating. LEDs, knobs, switches and alike usually all deemed as necessary, today's experience turns into a bunch of distractors. It's a well-made, hassle-free affair, always ready for action. Its simplicity isn't ordinary but elegant."

"All things considered, if a plug & play brilliantly voiced minimalist DAC is on your hit list, then this report's LessLoss DAC fits the profile just perfectly. That's the target right there."
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"This has to be among the finest built bespoke digital converters out there."

May, 2019, author: Danny Kaey
"smitten with LessLoss"

"this has to be among the finest built bespoke digital converters out there."

"Without a doubt, Echo's End Reference follows the clear sound path set forth by everything I have auditioned from LessLoss"

"organic, authentic, resolved, dynamic."

"Whereas some digital systems favor a more spotlit presentation, cueing the listener into each of the themes, Echo's End presents you with more of a stage view, which is to say you are listening to the entire production rather than drawing your focus to and from each note and phase effect."

"That organic, natural and neutral sonic signature of Echo's End plays fantastically well"

"Echo's End proved once again that no matter the input and source, this DAC's sonic signature stayed the same.

"Echo's End further helped clarify this with its organic character highlighting just how good, nay, great, good old compact disc can sound."

"build quality, internal makeup and parts quality are undoubtedly first rate"

"more musical information, detail retrieval and texture. Editorializing isn't part for the course. What you hear is what you get. Once you bite off the LessLoss tree, you may not look anywhere else."

"Reference quality in every regard."

"to genuine, bona-fide audio and music connoisseurs to whom bling is a dirty word and likely not even in their vocabulary."

"It's all about the music, nothing more, nothing less. Here, Echo's End shines and then some."
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6moons on Echo's End Reference: "everything hangs together like one breathing organism"

April, 2018, author: Srajan Ebaen
"Audiophilia's pursuit for more liquidity, generosity or humanity is very common. It's typical counterpoint to ever-increasing resolution and the related obsession with more detail. Whenever reviewers describe an exceptionally lucid component but want to distinguish it from aloof pornographic explicitness, they add words like humane or organic.

More so than any other DAC in recent memory, this Panzerholz-clad converter from Lithuania had that quality in spades."

"If your current system seems to you shy on tonal moisture, textural elasticity and general connective tissue–if everything is very clear but feels strangely 'apart' without that certain ne sais quo whereby everything hangs together like one big breathing organism–the Echo's End Reference should be a very strong contender."

"If to you digital seems like an endless parade of near sameness disguised behind escalating specs and claims to the contrary, the LessLoss Reference DAC stands out as being unapologetically different."

"Just don't let the name fool you. It's not about a dry desiccated sound at all. Quite the opposite."
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"...sounds almost as good as the vinyl disc on the best of analog systems."

November, 2017, author: Marek Dyba
"Echo's End offers exceptionally long, full reverb tails, which is usually the domain of tube devices."

"I listened to a lot of acoustic recordings with piano, string instruments, acoustic and classical guitars and in each of them this Lithuanian transducer had to offer even more than my LampizatOr. The one element that makes music different is that it seems to be fuller, and above all more natural, more 'right.'"

"I did not expect from this non-tube device - the naturalness, or actually even the organic nature of the sound. It's a feature I associate with vacuum tube based circuitry. And yes, I did happen to encounter it in some transistor digital sources, but only at a significantly higher price level."

"Let's just take a look at Michel Godard with Monteverdi's music and the variations on the theme (A trace of grace), which is absolutely gorgeous on vinyl, and from the digital version it always seemed a bit worse / poorer, though still very good. Playing from the file via USB input, Echo's End for the first time in terms of rendering spatial aspects and tone quality, sounds almost as good as the vinyl disc on the best of analog systems. The Noirlac Abbey's courtyard opened up to a huge size, the breadth of the sound was freely circling its distant corners, each clean, saturated sound filling the air, all complementing the palpability of large, precisely arranged apparent sources. All this together made a huge, realistic sounding panorama."

"Echo's End has shown that the resolution, the amount of information that can be extracted from recordings, also puts it in a really high league of digital sources, as does serious separation. In the case of the above mentioned recording, it was a great pleasure to listen to the sound of individual instruments. The insight into the color, the texture, the dynamics at the micro level was unique. This makes each instrument singular and all very realistically convincing."

"Another similarity to the well-known vinyl version of this recording was the softness of the sound, sometimes called analogue nature. In the digital world, it is associated with the sound of DSD files rather than "harder" PCMs. As in the case of the analogue disc, this "softness" of the sound is due to the softening of the attack phase, but without loss of speed. So when we have sudden, strong impulses of the leading edges of instrument attack, we still jump in our listening position, even if it is a tad lighter than other transistor DACs. Thanks to this, Alan Dawson's drumming performance was excellent on We're All Together for the First Time."

"One more feature that is worth mentioning, and which only audio devices with refined power feature, is a very black background. The latter comes from a lower level of noise and distortion, of which we may not be aware, but which do lower the sound quality and enjoyment of listening."

"So I plugged in a Firewall 5X module between the power cord and the Echo's End and it quickly confirmed that the sound of this device was partly obtained through the use of the onboard Firewall modules. In the simplest terms, all of the above-described features of the DAC sounded deeper. This made no noticeable negative impact, but the sound was made even cleaner, more organic, more colorful (not to be confused with colored), more illuminated - just more real. Adding a second "5X" further aggregated this effect, though I felt rather less than the first one. The playback was even smoother, more consistent, less choppy, but still fast, live sounding and energetic."

"Looking at the form of this device, and even at its interior it is difficult to guess how much it has to offer. You have to accept the lack of switches, displays and indicators, or the need to physically disconnect or turn off previously used sources. However, one quickly accustoms oneself to the elegance of this nicely made wooden box, especially since the sound of Echo's End easily convinces."

"It is clean, organic, smooth with amazing tembre, with beautifully rendered acoustics (where it's in the recording), but also dynamic and fast. Regardless of the type of file being played, Echo's End offers sound normally associated with DSD files - smooth, saturated, plastic, sharply focused, with a gentle but fast, powerful attack. It's one of those devices whose sound creates a spell from which it is difficult to break. It became hard to point out specific advantages over competitors, because overall I felt I just want to listen to the pure flow of the music."
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...better than any DAC I've had in my system...
...far more organic and three-dimensional...

September, 2017, author: Vance Hiner
"Whether it was Red Book, 24-bit/192kHz or 2x DSD files, the Echo's End narrowed the gap considerably, sounding largely like itself no matter the source."

"I wasn't prepared for the sonic bloom and realism."

"The Echo's End produced a three-dimensional soundstage that was strikingly deep. It rendered the nightclub crowd sounds so realistically that they became an important part of setting the mood of the performance; in fact, my dog, Zorro, started barking at some of the rowdier customers seated at the bar."

"The Echo's End is exceptionally good at detail retrieval."

"Clean, quiet and vivid. Those are not words that normally come to mind when I listen to this CD. I also noticed how much depth there was in the soundstage and the clarity of Baker's tone."

"The Echo's End is a damned fine DAC."

"The Echo's End is a thoroughly modern DAC that manages to sound both detailed and remarkably natural, but there are two things in particular that it does better than any DAC I've had in my system."

"First, its stage via USB presented music in a far more organic and three-dimensional way than what I've come to expect from this interface."

"Second, the Echo's End's timing and pacing are downright addictive. Its above-average performance in this particular area meant that groups of musicians sounded especially in sync, resulting in an emotional, visceral reaction to the music."

"The Echo's End is a real charmer."
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"The new LessLoss DAC should be on your list."

February, 2017, author: Srajan Ebaen
"The Echo's End had the most distinctive easily grasped gestalt ..."

"Whilst it didn't sound like tubes, it felt like them. Whilst I fed it pure PCM, it behaved like deep DSD."

"Not sounding but feeling like tubes meant textural fluidity with plenty of connective tissue but no response liberties or THD seasoning. Behaving like DSD meant sweeter, more elastic and texturally softer than standard CD sound, with more overt ambient recovery."

"Deep DSD indicates that the LessLoss went beyond the Lindemann's actual resampling. It expressed the same flavour but did so at categorically higher potency; in pure PCM no less."

"Longest ever decays from digital?"

"What the listener can tell regardless is that it works; and very plainly so."

"A vital qualifier was how such pervasive gentility–that softer more organic approach–didn't come at the expense of vividness. ... The musical gestalt didn't collapse."

"Muscle tone was that of an upright not supine body. This was key. Its softness was more on the surface. It didn't impact the core of musical tension. Incidentally, that's been a personal complaint with DSD converters of the über-alles or resampling kind. They all bled out some caffeine and put a minor damper on the musical adrenaline. The Echo's End did not. It did all the other DSD things and at a very good clip but not that one."

"Should your own tastes overlap–of wanting the pretty, nubile and spacious aspects of DSD but not its reduced verve– this LessLoss just might have your number. In an ocean of generics, having such a distinctive calling card is a useful advantage."

"I feel privileged to have experienced the Laminar Streamer's sonic achievements."

"Streaming the laminar way, music felt juicier and calmer at the same time. This was particularly keen on overcooked nervous jittery productions with their tense hype and sizzle. Now those had elegance and mellifluousness. They were on song according to the bel canto definition."

"The primary taste is of greater calm; as though time ran slower. This makes the listener more settled and poised."

"Intermixed aspects are a removal of very fine metallic grit in transients and overtones; and wetter ambiance."

"It's only by going back and forth, with/without, that one inspects why the experience differs. That's when the disappearance of faint glittery upper-mid/treble grit gets checked off; when more specific spatial sensations get translated into heightened contrast; and as a result of that and intangibles, why the overriding quality is greater calm. Here team LessLoss are undeniably on to something. DACs seem to be even more susceptible to how their digital data arrive than we suspected. Many of the gestalt-based complaints which audiophiles try to address with sundry hardware changes seem to have their roots here, at the very beginning."

"True, the Laminar Streamer did sit at this peak with the finest resolve of ambiance and focus for spatial mapping."

"The combination of Laminar Streamer and Echo's End spelled o-r-g-a-n-i-c and l-e-g-a-t-o in capital letters. Without losing any substance, music manifested less solid, staid and straight-jacketed. It felt more suspended, afloat and breathing. To visualize, think blooming ink blots on wet watercolour paper, albeit in 3D. That's your counterpoint for edge-limned silhouettes in a shadow play. That and the silky textural 'suede' softness were key. They walked hand in hand with greater calm."

"This calm had a very different living oxygenated quality to it."

"If what I described tracks your taste, the new LessLoss DAC should be on your list."

"Someone in Lithuania burns the midnight oil; at the very extreme high-end, in the middle and below; and not on the same old same old. Innovation rules!"
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