•Headamp Gilmore Lite Dynamic Headphone Amp (http://www.headamp.com/lite.shtml
): This certainly seems to be my safest and probably best bet. However I have slight concerns about using the 230/115V Voltage Converter since I am in the UK. Could purchase the Gilmore Lite Dedicated Power Supply as well, but I think that may be a little too expensive.
•Rega Ear Headphone Amplifier (http://www.rega.co.uk/index2.htm
): Nice commercial amp and at an excellent price with the added advantage of it being based in the UK.
•Meier Audio PORTA CORDA MkII (http://home.t-online.de/home/meier-audio/index.htm
): Seems to have more features than the others.
•Shellbrook Labs The Ascent
): I think its similar to the gilmore, but very new so opinions not yet formulated.
Basically I'm trying to decide between these now. I understand the confusion as to why some of the DIY amps have been dismissed such as the supermacro and ppa. My reason for this is by no means logical-I simply want to buy a product 'as is' without having so many variables-to know exactly what I'm getting. Whilst I understand those options are very valid and perhaps a good choices- I guess I just don't want them.
Anyway the Gilmore Lite appeals to me the most-its versatlity, quality, price, and majority reccomendations all lean to it. However being based in the UK I have a problem. The Gilmore Lites standard Elpac power supply is only available in a 100-120V model. Whilst I could buy the Dedicated Gilmore Lite Power Supply in 220-240V supply (and would love to!); it breaks my budget considerably. HeadAmp are offering a 230/115V Voltage Converter as a convenience for $20; although with all these parts the Lite loses the sleek portabilty factor that made it so appealing to me in the first plce. And quite honestly instead of the Gilmore Lite and Dedicated Gilmore Lite Power Supply in 220-240V supply for $479; I would rather get the SR-71 for $395. But if you still think the gilmores worth all that hassle (I do really like it) then maybe I should just go for it?
The Rega seems to be my most sensible option right now-its cheap and apparently very good with HD650's and based in the UK. If there really isn't much difference between it and the others mentioned I may well just end up getting that.
The Meier is definitely an option for me since I go to Germany often and could easily get one delivered to my hotel. The combination of batteries and AC power along with the crossfeed plus the good price makes this probably just as good as the rega for me at least.
I know very little about the Ascent, but it seems very similar to the Gilmore, even price wise. Drew just e-mailed to inform me that there would be no power supply issues for me (incedentally he admits this is a very tough choice). Could this be the right choice?
Other ones that I'm sort of half considering are the headroom little-no power supply problem for me according to headroom and although beyond my budget I do really like the SR-71 (but just can't get it!)
To be honest If I lived in the USA I would pick up the gilmore lite in a heartbeat-it just feels right. But please understand that I'm not in the US and thus have an even more complicated descision to make!
So which one should I get?!
P.S I admire your patience with me and am very grateful, there is simply no other resource for headphone research worth looking at.