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Posts by King of Pangaea

Do your comparisons SE.  After you decide, if what you wind up with has XLR cabling option go further by adding that.  I made my comparisons using SE only with HD600, so I didn't have to recable my HD800/HDVD connection.  The SE HD600 connection, after volume matching, was satisfactory for the job, allowing me to hear the difference in the amps.  I am not sure the XLR4 cabling from the cans to the amp really helps, some people think it does, some don't, but it can't...
Now that you have an amp you like, why look for a DAC with a built-in amp?  Perhaps for the same money you can get a better DAC.  I think the things are usually either one or the other.  Either its a DAC with an amp thrown in (better DAC than amp) or its am amp with a DAC thrown in (just a so so DAC).  Also bear in mind there are other components in the DAC output than just the chip, whatever, Burr-Brown, Cirrus Logic, etc. Once you have satisfactory performance with one...
Both burned in yes.  Also both warmed up for about 4 hour before comparison.  The HDVD 800 seems to improve measurably after 4 or 5 hours warm up, so should your 600.  I have no experience with DAC1.  I should be happy with what I have.  This is what I learned with buying the Benchmark.  It didn't do anything wrong or bad, just not an improvement over what I already had. At least now I have a remote  volume control for the Senn HDVD800; that is nice.  Basically I just...
I just compared the amps in the HDVD800 and Benchmark DAC2, using HD600 and analog out of the Marantz SA8005 using its DAC and bypassing the DACs in both Senn and Benchmark.  After several minutes it became apparent the HDVD800 amp was superior.  Better detail, definition and a greater soundstage.  The HDVD800 is an amp first and a DAC second.  The DAC2 is a DAC first and an amp second.    Case closed.
I also have a Denon DVD-3930 and consider it to be equal in quality and voicing to the Marantz SA8005.  My Oppo BDP95 is more detailed but a bit bass-shy on some recordings.    I think it may be that for all practical purposes, I have about as good as it gets, materially speaking.  Any significant improvement, either in DAC or amp would run into the multi thousands of $.  Listening again today, I think the Benchmark DAC2 is actually the equivalent of the Senn HDVD 800...
I just acquired a Benchmark DAC2 HGC and am wondering if I made a good choice.  The DAC sections of both my disc players, Oppo BDP 95 and Marantz SA 8005 seem to outperform the Benchmark. Is there a well recognized axiom that the output from decent DACs from different manufacturers have different synergy with different amps, like the synergy between amp and cans?  If this is so, I have another long and arduous journey in a search for a better match.  If I subsitituted a...
Balanced.  XLR out from source to HDVD800 and XLR4 to HD800.  I'm not sure it makes a difference, but it can't hurt to try for all you can theoretically get.
I'm using mine balanced. XLR in from source to HDVD800 and XLR4 out to HD800.
As for brightness, or harsh treble, I notice this sometimes even with the HDVD.  HDVD are overly sensitive to harsh HF to begin with which is why some amps just don't work well with them.  But once you are in the game with a given set of cans it then becomes a process of finding the right amp.  I suppose one could go buy an amp first and then go looking for the best cans to go with it, but it kind of seems like a cart before the horse thing: never heard of anyone doing...
I have the HDVD 800 so I assume the DAC end is not what you are interested in.  The DAC in the HDVD800 is OK but I find the DACs in both my disc players, OPPO BDP95 and Marantz SA8005 to be superior.  However I am looking to upgrade DACs, considering Benchmark DAC2 HGC or Chord Hugo.   Anyway, to answer your question, both Amps are identical, I believe, and the pairing of HD800 to HDVD 800 is superb.  I have no experience with BHA 1 so I cannot answer.  I do know the...
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