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McAlister Electrostatic Amp

post #1 of 130
Thread Starter 
I have heard some good things about this amp here and there on the forum..... but who actually owns one of these and how do you find it?

How does it compare to other respected electrostatic amps?
post #2 of 130
Here is the link: http://www.mcalisteraudio.com/. Look for the EA-1. There have been a few scattered reports about it - just do a search and you'll find them.

I have heard that Pete McAlister is re-doing the case on the EA-1, and with it perhaps an increase in price.
post #3 of 130
Looks like a great buy to me, especially since I saw pics of units with the Koss plug as well, and I think the HE90, but can't be too sure about the second one. It'd be cool to see it go head to head with the other amps, as little as we know about it.
post #4 of 130
Take a look at post #488 here for a brief impression of the EA-1: http://www6.head-fi.org/forums/showt...er#post2081024
post #5 of 130
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the info guys.... but there must be somebody out there who has actually lived with this amp.... isn't there???
post #6 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by lwd
Thanks for the info guys.... but there must be somebody out there who has actually lived with this amp.... isn't there???
mikeg has the EA-1 amp. Send him a pm and I am sure he will respond.
post #7 of 130
Oh no, another contender.
post #8 of 130
I've had mine for several months, and use it daily with my HE90. I've also brought it to several meets, where it was used to simultaneously drive an HE90, HE60, OII, and a Koss ESP/950. Everyone that has heard this amp., liked it. IMO, it is a truly terrific amp. for the price. It's performance is about 85% that of an HEV90, and it seems as good, or better, than the Stax amps. that I've heard.
post #9 of 130
I have koss esp950's with the standard e90 amp connected to my zhaolu dac. I am considering the EA-4 as an upgrade but am wondering if the Koss's will sound so much better with the upgrade. I could get a good dynamic amp for my other headphones for less money. How significant an upgrade in sound would the EA-4 be for me?
post #10 of 130
There is an improvement, but still not up to O2 standards.

Quote:
Originally Posted by educator
I have koss esp950's with the standard e90 amp connected to my zhaolu dac. I am considering the EA-4 as an upgrade but am wondering if the Koss's will sound so much better with the upgrade. I could get a good dynamic amp for my other headphones for less money. How significant an upgrade in sound would the EA-4 be for me?
post #11 of 130
I wouldn't expect the esp950 to sound like the omega2. My question is whether the improvement of the esp950's is significant to justify the investment of $1000 for the amp. If I decide to buy the amp, then I can start saving for the O2's but I would like to hear a big difference with my current headphones before I raise funds for a headphone upgrade.
post #12 of 130
I retract what i said.
post #13 of 130
IMO, the investment in a McAlister is not justified, if it's done solely for driving the Koss. While there is an improvement, it's only moderate. The limiting factor is the headphone, and not the amp.

Quote:
Originally Posted by educator
I wouldn't expect the esp950 to sound like the omega2. My question is whether the improvement of the esp950's is significant to justify the investment of $1000 for the amp. If I decide to buy the amp, then I can start saving for the O2's but I would like to hear a big difference with my current headphones before I raise funds for a headphone upgrade.
post #14 of 130
Has anyone heard the Lambda pros, 404's, or the SRX mk3 out of the McAlister? Also, how does it compare to the standard Egmont?
post #15 of 130
Quite a few people heard various Stax headphone out of my McAlister at several meets, and they all said that the amp. did a great job driving all the Stax headphones that were connected to it. As for the Egmont, I believe that Wmcmanus ownes one, and that it is now on loan to guss2. Both Wmcmanus and guss2 compared Stax headphones and HE90s, when connected back and forth to my McAlister, and to Wmcmanus' Egmont, and they should therefore be asked for their impressions. As for my comparisons of these two amps, using HE90s, I concluded that both amps sounded essentially identical, although not quite up to HEV90 standards.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ironbut
Has anyone heard the Lambda pros, 404's, or the SRX mk3 out of the McAlister? Also, how does it compare to the standard Egmont?
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