I just got a Tone 2 Pro and I want to connect it to my PC on one end and a pair of speakers on the other. My PC doesn’t allow for USB-C in/out and I’m wondering if I can us an adaptor with the USB-C and plug into the PC with the USB-A adaptor. Would this work?
Hello, Welcome to the community.
Yes, it should work. I have a Khadas supplied USB-A to USB-C cable and that is how I connect the Tone or Tone 2 Pro to my laptop.
The Tone and Tone 2 Pro are preamp level devices, they will not directly drive a passive speaker. They will drive active speakers(amplified speakers). The Tone 2 Pro does have a headphone amplifier and can directly drive headphones.
Thank you RD, I appreciate it. The speakers power themselves so I am good there.
Any idea where I should go on the forum (or YouTube) to find some guidance with the settings on the Tone 2? I hear that the Tone 2 is great, but a bit tedious to set up. I don’t mind rolling up my sleeves to get it right - I just want to get it right. Thanks again.
I consider myself somewhat of a critical listener, but I am no audiophile. For my aging ears, the Tone 2 Pro sounds excellent straight out of the box. Advice on getting the T2P to sound its absolute best would better come from one of the more critical listeners here on the forum.
The Khadas Blog has several articles on the T2P, such as this one on bit perfect audio for Linux users.
The T2P has been widely(and favorably) reviewed, perhaps some pointers could be had from reviewing a few. Scroll to the bottom of this page for some links to reviews.
If you thirst for more, start a discussion in the Tone Section of the forum. I assume you will get many helpful tips and will open a discussion that should be quite popular.
Hope it helps.
PS @dsnyder0cnn may have some tips.
Thanks a lot RD. I’m glad to hear that you like the T2P right out of the box. I think I’ll use it right out of the box and enjoy it, then I’ll probably follow your advice as to getting some suggestions on how to maximize the T2P but do so at a relaxed pace since I can enjoy it in it’s original state.
I had noticed the good reviews. Between the T2P, all of the good reviews, and my new set of speakers that I’m enjoying I am really looking forward to getting the T2P and the speakers working together.
If you want to make some preparation before your T2P arrives, you may want to have a look at the User’s Manual.
Also, to learn of some of the T2P’s features, these videos from the Khadas Youtube Channel will provide some insight, Part 1, Part 2.
Several other T2P videos on the channel as well, have a look.
Enjoy the Tone 2 Pro.
RD, thanks again. Those links to the Khadas Youtube Channel will definitely be helpful and I will certainly watch them in the next day or two. I’ve heard that the T2P is excellent but not exactly intuitive. I would like to understand its features and how to use them.
My USB-A to USB-C is supposed to arrive sometime today. I am eager to get it.
I went through measurements and my findings for the sweet spot with the Khadas Tone2 Pro and a few other DACs in this presentation I did for the San Francisco Audiophile Society:
If that’s too long to watch, I’m using the Hybrid Fast filter. Not only does it sound great, it seems to have the best time-domain response.
For connections, I highly recommend using one of the Khadas balanced RCA cables if your external amplifier has XLR inputs…and especially if it’s fully balanced. I’m getting great sound out of the 4.4mm balanced headphone jack on the Tone2 Pro; however, results are significantly better from my THX AAA 789 headphone amp with a balanced connection.
You’ll generally get better sound from the Tone2 if you use a better digital transport. A general purpose laptop or desktop PC will work, but you may get better sound from a dedicated, purpose-built streamer, like VitOS from Silent Angel.
Finally, make sure that you have a good power source for the Tone2 Pro. Some smaller devices, like smartphones, tablets, and the Raspberry Pi may struggle a little without using a secondary power source.
So far I’m not doing well with the setup. My computer recognizes the T2P and I can select it but no sound comes out of the speakers that I have the T2P connected to (Klipchs R-15PM).
I was in the process of typing all this out and then I figured it out. Huge relief and great sound all at once!!!
I had all the hardware hooked up properly and I had the T2P setting right but I needed to switch the input settings on my speakers from USB to PHONO (on the remote - NOT the metal switch on the back of the speaker).
There’s a metal switch on the back of the Klipsch speaker that says Line/Phono. When I switch it to Phono all hell breaks loose. Why is that? haha
Phono inputs usually pass input through a preamp with an RIAA EQ curve. Output from most turntables(cartridges) is fairly low compared to other signal sources, so a preamp is used on the phono inputs of most integrated amps or receivers with a phono input. The RIAA EQ is used in the making and playback of albums(LPs, vinyl discs) to overcome some of the shortcomings of the medium.
I assume on your active speakers, the switch on the back either passes the RCA inputs through or around the RIAA preamp. While the remote selects the signal source overall.
What model of speaker are they?
When I was growing up, Klipsch were known primarily for their horn loaded speakers. Klipschorn speakers were among, if not the most efficient consumer speaker systems available. They employed a folded horn in a large enclosure, if I recall correctly, their efficiency was 104dB @1W1M. Most speakers systems fall somewhere around 85-91dB@1W1M(1 watt power, test at a distance of 1 meter from the speaker).
I think you are correct in your understanding, based on my recent crash course, trying to figure out what I did, and why the sound was so terrible.
The speakers are Klipsch R-15PM. They are shelf speakers. Decent quality to me, but of course that’s very relative.
Everything sounds good, so I don’t think I did any damage, but I can be the uptight, paranoid sort, especially when it comes to damaging material objects that I like (yuck - not a great trait). So, I’m still concerned that I might have done some damage even though it doesn’t seem so.
Generally speaker drivers can handle brief periods of input that exceed their rated power without damage(within reason). Likely those active speakers have some built-in protection against overdriving the amp. If they sound fine, you probably escaped any permanent damage.
Speaker systems have their specs and certainly those can be used to make quantitative evaluations, however, when it comes to what sounds best to a particular listener it is far more subjective than numbers will portend. Some will love a particular pair, while others may not. Specs can not always be a predictor to who likes what. You could take to identically spec’d speaker systems, some will love them, others will not. I made speaker systems for a hobby, this lead me to believe that math was very important when designing cabinets, but a little magic served as an unknown variable.
Thanks again RD, both for the friendly education as well as calming my paranoia. I don’t think I did any damage. I’ve been listening for the past 30 minutes to a range of different types of music, and it’s been both really enjoyable and seemingly devoid of any evidence of speaker damage. I will put the concern behind me and just enjoy.
You are 100% correct and I’m grateful that you helped walk me through it. Very kind of you. I will probably just enjoy for a few days or weeks and then dive back in and try to get a greater understanding of the T2P. For now, I am very much enjoying the default settings and not in the mood to tinker further. Happy to be “done” for now. haha