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Survey and Opinions of Chinese (or other) Tube Head Amps....

post #1 of 48
Thread Starter 
....Help me decide what my next purchase will be. (under probably $500 but that can be flexible.) I'm going to make this thread a comprehensive 'inventory' of reasonably priced -- and perhaps a few a bit over my self-imposed idea of 'reasonably priced' -- tube or tube/SS hybrid head amps.

Jump past this long winded intro and get to the list...

Short background...

I'm new to this hobby. This is as a matter of fact, my 1st post, though I've been lurking and reading a good deal here and other places. I've spent gagillions of dollars on stereo and HT equipment. I have very very nice 2-ch and 5-ch (soon to be 7-ch) setups. But driven by a desire to have 'nice' sound @ work while I program, I recently decided to try a head amp. And I bought a Little Dot II+. Youza ... nice!

I have old (from the 70s or early 80s) AKG K240 phones, 600 ohm that I leave @ home. I find the LD II+ needs an "11" on the volume dial to really drive them.

At work I have B&O Form-2 phones that are about 7 years old, and Senn HD477 phones I received for free from Crutchfield on purchase of a Sony HT system for my wife's den (we have 3 ) a few years back. I'm surprised by the sound of the latter after having listened to the 240s all weekend as comparison.

I drive all of them with an iPod G5 at work and several inputs @ home through a mixer. I also plan on buying some "very high end" headphones now. Anyone selling AKG 340s? (just kidding ... kinda serious tho) There's a bunch of new ones on my list.

Here's the dillema and my reason for asking your opinions...

I bought the LD II+ for work, but it was oh so tough to part with it from my home and bring it in here (work)! I decided I need another amp @ home to make me happy! so.... Do I buy another Little Dot II+ for home, or another tube head-amp? [probably Chinese for the value proposition]

As an example, the G&W T2.6F Amplifier is intriguing and oh so tempting. I might consider spending up to about $500 for something, but again, that can be flexible. But I won't be $$$ snobish and worry about just spending $150 for the cost of the LD II+ again either. The reason I'm leaning towards the G&W T2.6F vs. the LD II+ at home again is the AKG 240s need a good amount of power to drive them. The LD II+ has 0.6mW output and G&W is rated @ 1W.

So, would -love- to read all your thoughts on the crop of tube head amps out, mostly of the Chinese variety I guess for the value end of it, but I'm open there too of course. I do want to stay with tubes however. I'm no tube biggot, but for this I'd like to stay with tubes.

Perhaps as guidance, list the brand and what you liked about it, and how you compare its audio quality in relation to its price for the valude proposition. I'll start.
Quote:
I don't know "too much" about all this, and my headphones aren't all that great so I don't know if I am even qualified to give an opinion .... but the LD II+ is doing a phenominal job at buffering and amplification between my iPod and phones -- even with 'low impedance' ones that an iPod is supposed to be able to drive well. It is making -=music=- in the subtlest of sounds in those all important place:
a) between the notes.
b) and those long running subtle notes/tones that commonly weave a complex pleasing melody playing to a beat several times slower then the primary beat of the music, but are often on the verge of hearing, or perhaps better put at the edge of one's awareness until you key into hearing into the music.

I find it is uncovering these melodies and nuances I had not heard before, or perhaps heard only as 'noise' with all of these headphones or through my car stereo (the latter, when I plug my iPod into it) when driven directly by the iPod. It allows me to hear into the music so much better. And I'm happily able to do that at much lower volume levels now too!
thanx everyone for reading and your posts if you do.
post #2 of 48
Thread Starter 
I think it would be great to have some "compare and contrast" thoughts about tube or hybrid head amps in one place...candidates.

edit: Updated List (deviated from a Chinese focus to a fully international one ):

edit: 9/9/2006 - I decided to maintain this 2nd message with all the updates to my list. (I hope I'm allowed for the message to be over 10K characters or I may have to revisit this idea)

edit: 10/1/2006 - I haven't been good at notifying of updates. I remembered today...
Added G&W T-2A, Darkvoice 336, T.M.S. T-200MKll

edit: 10/13/2006 - Added WooAudio 3 details

Little Dot II (review)
Quote:
· Retail: $95
· Frenquency response: 10HZ to 35KHZ (-3db)
· Distortion: <=1% (50mW, 300ohm) ; <=3% (92mW, 300 ohm)
· Power handling capacity: 35W (under alternating current situation)
· Tube used: 1B2 x2, 4P1S x2 [DHT!]
· Can drive headphones with 30 ohm to 600 ohm
· Power supply-220-240V, or 110-120V
Little Dot II+ (reviews & comparison to LDII) ( Impressions + a few words about DHT ) (opinion) (another) (another) (another)
Quote:
· Retail: $150
· Frenquency response: 10HZ to 35KHZ (-3db)
· Distortion: <=1% (50mW, 300ohm) ; <=3% (92mW, 300 ohm)
· Power handling capacity: 35W (under alternating current situation)
· Driver Tubes: Mullard EF92 x2
· Gain :x9 or x12 (300 ohm) select by jumper
· Input Sensitivity: 450 mV (rms)
· Input Volt. Max. : 2200mV (rms)
· Power Tubes: 4P1S x2 [ DHT !]
· Output terminal: 6.5mm Mic Jack
· Input terminal: RCA Jack
· Color: golden, silver, black
· Can drive headphones with 30 ohm to 600 ohm
Little Dot III+ (detailed initial impressions) (another) (after 40 hours)
Quote:
· Pricing: 349 USD
· Input: One set RCA jacks.
· Outputs: 1/4" Headphone jack, one set speaker binding posts, and one set RCA Preamp out jacks.
· Gain :x9 or x12 (300 ohm) select by jumper
· Input Sensitivity: 450 mV (rms)
· Input Volt. Max. : 2200mV (rms)
· Driver Tubes: Mullard EF91 x2
· Power Tubes: 4P1S x2 [ DHT !]
· New "Intelligent MCU" circuitry detects your headphone's impedance and automatically changes output power to best match your headphones.
· Frequency Range:
15HZ-25KHz (Triode mode)
25HZ-65KHz (Pentode mode)
· Output Power:
Speakers: 3.5W + 3.5W into 8 ohms
Headphones: 1000mW into 120 ohms
· Suitable Headphone Impedance: 32 ohms to 600 ohms (auto-detect)
· Suitable Speaker Impedance: 8 ohms
G&W T-2.6F (discussion & opinions) (another)
Quote:
· Street Price (eBay) US $319.99 + $45 shipping
· Input sensitivity:150mV
· Frequency:10Hz-208KHz +/-3 dB
· Signal/Noise Ratio:101dB (Vrms:15V)
· Distortion:0.05% (Vrms:10V; 1KHz)
· Weight: net/gross 8.5kg
· Output Power: 1000mW (20Hz~20KHz)
· Power Supply: 110-120V/60Hz
· Output impedance: 32-600 ohm
· Stock tubes: Russian 6922EH
· Hitachi power MOSFET 2SK214/2SJ77. EI iron-cored inductor with ruby electrolytic capacitors as πtype filter
· Power Consumption: 60W
G&W T-2A
Quote:
· Street Price (eBay) US $374 (200GBP) + shipping
· Input Sensitivity: 150mV
· Output power: 2 x 800mW
· Frequency Response: 16Hz - 110kHz (-1dB), 8Hz - 238kHz (-3dB)
· Signal-to-Noise Ratio: >101dB
· THD: <0.1% (1kHz V0:1V)
· Can drive headphones with 200ohm to 600ohm
· Tube compliment: Pre-amp: 12AU7 valves/tubes ; Power-amp: EL84 valves/tubes
Bada PH-1 (a few words)
Quote:
· List Price:$225.00 ; Street Price: $175.00
· Frequency Response 10Hz-40KHz +/-1 dB
· Signal/Noise Ratio: >90dB
· Distortion: less than 0.3%
· Hum: not measurable (less than 0.1mV)
· Output Power: 1W
· Output impedance: 10-600 ohm
· Input Consumption: 50W
· Tube & SS Compliment: 6N16B-Q military grade tube and Hitachi power MOSFET K214/J77 output transistor
Bada PH-12 here we go... (point) (counter-point, sorta) ...let the games begin!
Quote:
· List Price:$575.00 ; Street Price: $450.00
· Recommendation headset impedance : 30 –600 ohms
· Rated output power : 1W (47 @ ohms)
· Frequency response : 10Hz-50kHz (+0/-1 dB)
· Harmonics distortion : <0.6%
· Gain : 16dB
· Signal / Noise Ration > 95dB
· Power consumption : 50W
· Tube & SS Compliment: 3 military grade level 6N7GT dual triodes and Toshiba 2SK1529 transistors
Musical Fidelity XCAN v3

Ming Da MC 66AE
Quote:
· List Price:$499.00 ; Street Price: $325.00
· Maximum Output: 600mw~1.5w
· Output Impedance: 32Ω、300Ω、600Ω
· Input Level: 500mv
· Input Impedance: 100k
· Total Harmonic Distortion: ≤0.8%
· Frequency responses: 15Hz~50KHz ±dB
· Signal to Noise Ratio: 92dB
· Input Jacks: 1groups
· Output Jacks: 3groups
· Vacuum Tubes: 6N6x2 12AX7x1
· Power Consumption: 42W
WooAudio 3 (initial impressions) (Feel the Love, and again) (experiences)
Quote:
· $490 w/shipping from mfg.
· Headphones impedance : 30-600 Ohms
· Input impedance: 100 Kilo-Ohms
· Frequency response: 8 Hz - 100 KHz +/-3dB
· Pre-amp Gain: 10 dB
· Signal/Noise: 95 dB
· THD: <= 0.08%
Parts and Components
· One 6AS7/6080 power tube. Two 6DJ8/6922 drive tubes.
· Heavy-duty full aluminum die-cast chassis, alodinze finished.
· Whole aluminum volume knob and power switch button.
· 100 watts specially made toroidal transformer.
· Gold-pin tube sockets.
· Gold-plate RCA
· Alps potentiometer and power switch
· ELNA and WIMA capacitors
· Dale and Vishay high precision resistors.
· Teflon wires
Xiansheng 708B (review)
Quote:
· List Price:$299.99 ; Street $190.00
· Input impedance : 100K;
· Output impedance : 32--600
· Signal / Noise Ratio: 89dB
· Frequency response : 20Hz--30KHz
· Distortion: =0.01%
· Headphone Output : 500mW--250mW
· Tube Compliment: 1 6N3, 2X 6922, 1X 6Z4 and 1X 6N1(tube window) tubes
Headroom Millett Hybrid (review / impression) (professional review)
Quote:
· Retail: $649
· Stock Tube Compliment for Tube Rolling: 12FM6, 12AE6A, and 12FK6
· Class-A Upgrade option
· Power Supply Upgrade option
· Volume Pot Upgrade option
(all makes for a pretty expensive solution)
DYI Millett Hybrid

Pete Millett's DIY Audio pages

ECC99 SRPP Headphone Amp (Pete Millet Design specifically for K1000)
Quote:
· Maximum output (5% THD) into 100 ohm load Switch set to Low Z 4.2V RMS (176mW)
· Maximum output (5% THD) into 100 ohm load Switch set to High Z 5.7V RMS (325mW)
· Maximum output (5% THD) into 300 ohm load Switch set to Low Z 4.4V RMS (65mW)
· Maximum output (5% THD) into 300 ohm load Switch set to High Z 6.4V RMS (137mW)
· THD at 1V RMS, 1kHz into 100 ohm load Switch set to Low Z 1.0%
· THD at 1V RMS, 1kHz into 100 ohm load Switch set to High Z 0.8%
· THD at 1V RMS, 1kHz into 300 ohm load Switch set to Low Z 0.9%
· THD at 1V RMS, 1kHz into 300 ohm load Switch set to High Z 0.7%
· THD residual is virtually all second harmonic, giving the characteristic "single ended triode" signature
· Freq response 20-20kHz -1.0dB/-0.3dB ref 1kHz 1V RMS, either output Z selected... -3dB down at 70kHz
· Noise referenced to 1kHz 1V RMS -65dB (probably near my measurement limit)
· Tube Compliment: ECC99
Wheatfield Audio HA-1 (Pete Millet design)
Quote:
· Input impedance: 50k ohms
· Input connections: Unbalanced, gold-plated RCA
· Tube complement: 1x ECC82 (12AU7), 2x 7044
· Frequency Response :
600 ohm load: <9Hz - 250kHz +/- 3 dB
32 ohm load: 12Hz – 250kHz +/- 3 dB
· THD+N (1kHz, 1V RMS out, 100 ohm load): <0.12%
· Maximum output voltage (5% THD):
600 ohm load: 13V RMS
32 ohm load: 1.5V RMS
· Output impedance: Approx. 35 ohms
· Output connection: Standard ¼” stereo headphone jack
Earmax base and Pro
Quote:
Earmax Headphone Amplifier - Technical Data
· 19V AC output (350mA)
· Bandwidth: 4Hz-1Mhz (-3dB)
· Maximum Output Power: Silver: 100mWatts (peak), Pro: 150mWatts (peak)
· Distortion: Typical 0.1Y-Max 1.0Y (soft clipping like a Single-Ended Triode Power Amplifier, predominantly Second Harmonics). The Silver Edition has 3-5 times lower distortion.
· Smoothing capacity: 2 x 4700uF
· Input Impedence: DC: >100kOhms, 100pF, AC: 47kOhms
· Optimum Load Impedence: >25-2000 Ohms ( base: >200 )
· S/N ratio typically greater than 95dB (A-Weighted) (Silver)m 90dB (Pro)
· Power consumption: 14-16 watts (Silver), 10-11watts (Pro)
· Tube Compliment: base: ECC81 x1, ECC86 x2
· Tube Compliment: Pro: AT7 x1, 6DJ8 x2
Cayin (Spark) HA-1A (initial impression) (1st thoughts with DT880 [soon to arrive here] ; yes try Triode mode) (2nd thoughts with DT880) (full review)
Quote:
· List $750 ; Street $399
· Output Tube Mode switchable between triode and ultralinear.
· Impedance Selector Switch for perfect interface with any pair of headphones – switchable between 6 and 300 ohms.
· Usable as a preamplifier (14dB gain).
· Usable as an integrated amplifier – Power output: 1.2W x 2 (RMS, triode) or 2.2W x 2 (RMS, ultralinear).
· Uses two EL 84s, a 12AX7 and a 12AU7 tube.
Bottlehead S.E.X.
Quote:
· Base price $389.00
· Specs: Can vary; it's an Experimenter's kit.... See the Bottlehead page.
Eddie Current EC-01 (opinion)
Quote:
· Retail: $349.00 - Street: ???$250???
· Gain 22dB
· Max output 19V peak driving 300 ohms, or 1.2 watts.
· Source impedance 80 ohms.
· Frequency Response driving 300 ohms –0.5dB 10Hz and 200kHz.
· Wideband noise plus gain referenced to 1V -102dB.
· Tube Compliment: 1 6N3P, 2 6N6P.
Eddie Current Laconic Lunch Box (HA-02T) (initial impression) (initial impression) (follow-up impression)
Quote:
Lunch Box Specifications (nothing on the website):
· List & Street Price: $160
· Gain 22 dB
· Frequency response plus minus 1dB from 15 to 100,000 Hz.
· Power out R=150 ohm 135mW Peak
· Power out R=300 ohm 160mW Peak (? Craig just e-mailed me that it's 220mW into 300 ohms at 1kHz)
· Noise plus gain -84dB wideband
· Minimum load 150 ohms. (even though source out is 25 ohms ; said to have a smaller PS so max current is limited by it)
· Tube compliment. One 6N3P, Two 6N24P
Opera Consonance Cyber 20 (professional review) (preliminary review)
Quote:
List $??? ; Street $327
· control Functions: Volume, Gain (low/high) Switch, Power On/Off
· output impdeance: (low) 10-200 ohms , (high) 200-600 ohms
· output power at 1 kHz: 1W x2 RMS
· bandwidth at -3dB: 20Hz - 40kHz (1W)
· signal/noise: 90dB
· input interfaces: 1 group (RCA)
· input impedance: 50k
· input sensitivity for rated output: 900mV
· output interfaces: 2 groups (6.5mm Mic Jack)
· consumption: 26W
· vacuum tubes: EL84x2, ECC82x1
Antique Sound Lab [ ATL ] HB1
Quote:
· List Price $300
· Output power (feedback) 15mW on 32 Ohm Headphone
· Frequency responsible at 1V 15Hz to 100K -1 db
· Frequency responsible at full power 15Hz to 100K -1db
· Distortion <1%
· S/N Ratio 78dB
· Input impedance 100K
· Power request 30W
· Input sensitive 1V
Antique Sound Lab [ ATL ] MG HEAD DT OTL MKIII
Quote:
· List Price $400
· Output Power 120mW x 2
· Frequency responsible at 1 W 15Hz - 35KHz
· Frequency responsible at full power 19Hz - 40KHz
· Distortion at 1W < 2%
· Distortion at full power < 3%
· S/N Ratio 78dB
· Input impedance 100K
· Output Impedance HIGH - LOW (10 Ohm - 600 Ohm)
· Input sensitive 1V
· Power request 21W
· Input Sockets RCA Gold Plate
· Output Termininal 3.5mm /6.5mm Mic Jack
· Tube Complement 6BQ5 x2, 12AX7 x1
Antique Sound Lab [ ATL ] MG OTL 32 DT
Quote:
· List Price $700
· OUTPUT 10mW @ 32ohms
· Frequency responsible 13Hz--19000Hz + 1dB
· Distortion at 3%
· Noise 64 dB
· Output Power 18mW @ 120ohms
· Distortion at 0.50%
· Frequency responsible 18Hz--19000Hz + 1dB
· Noise 77dB
· Output Power .3W @ 300 ohms
· Distortion at 1%
· Noise 80dB
· Frequency responsible 19Hz--19000Hz + 1dB
· Power request 58W
DYI World Audio Designs HD83 (bottom)
Quote:
· Build Kit: approx $400 USD
· Tube Compliment: Mullard ECL83 valves.
· The circuit utilises twin high specification output E/I output transformers that will drive any headphone load from 16 ohms to over 300 ohms depending on how the secondaries are wired up. The Headphone II is a single-ended design with the power pentode wired up in triode configuration for that added purity and is a quiet as a mouse. External dimensions
Mapletree Ear 4/Ear+ Purist HD DIY Kit (review)
Quote:
Specifications:
· Input resistance: 100 kOhms
· Headphone output impedance: 7 Ohms
· Sensitivity: 0.3 V for 10 mW output
· Output power: 100 mW
· Heavy duty power supply and output transformers for increased power output and extended bass response with low distortion.
· Para-feed headphone output circuit drives 32–300 Ohm impedance phones including the Sennheiser HD580/600/650.
· All point-to-point wiring.
· Tube complement: 2 x 12B4A and 1 x 5751/ECC83/12AX7.
· Ultra high-speed HEXFRED recitifier diodes and Alps volume control.
· Passive preamp output jacks and dual line input jacks for system patching.
Singlepower PPX3 ,PPX3-6SN7 , MPX3 , Supra , Maestro ZR (featured review) (review) (featured head-to-head: PPX3 vs. Supra vs. ASL OTL32)
Quote:
PPX3 Specifications: List: $849 ; Street: $465 (others go up from there)
· Input impedance: 100K ohm
· Output Impedance: < 20 Ohms
· Power supply capacitance: 215 uF
· Rectification: silicon
· Power output < 0.5 watts
· Usable headphone range: 16 to 2000 ohms.
· Total distortion < 0.1%
· Volume control: Noble
· Point-to-Point Wiring (no circuit boards)
· Vishay RN65 Military Metal Film Resistors
· 6CG7 Tube Compliment
Darkvoice 336 (the definitive thread) (first and follow-up impressions from a LD II owner) (Custom Edition Darkvoice THA336FM)
Quote:
Street: reported to now be $350
· Power:1 watt
· drive Impedance :32-600 ohms
· Signal/Noise Ratio: 98dB
· frequency: 10Hz-20kHz +/-1dB
· Distortion: <=2%
· AC Power:220V/50Hz (only)
· Tube:6N8,6N5(directly replaced to 6080、6AS7)
T.M.S. T-200MKll
Quote:
Integrated Stereo Power Amplifier (CLASS-A) WITH TUBE HEAD PHONE AMP OUTPUT
· Street Price (e-Bay) $220 (118GBP) + 38GBP shipping
· Output Impedance:4 ohms -8 ohms (Earphone 32 ohms-600 ohms)
· Power: 6Wx2 (1KHz) (Earphone 600m W)
· Output tube: EL84x2
· Input/Driver tube: 6N3x2
· Input Impedance:100K ?
· Frequency: 10Hz-30KHz (-1 dB )
· Signal/Noise Ratio: >89dB
· Input Sensitivity: 650m V
· Electrical Dissipation: 38W
· USB Connection : USB , PC , MP3 ,iPOD
· USB Sound Card :16bits full duplex CODEC
· Supports: Window XP, 2000, ME, 98, 98SE, NT4.0, LINUX...
(links to come)

MPX Slam
FEEL HP200SE
Anrun best listen A-6.0LG (???)
SOHA DIY (???)

( sorry, I don't like that hardly anyone provides links when mentioning/recommending. I'll provide them as soon as I have the time to find all the appropriate link for each above )


What's tough is, you read high praise for all of them ... choices, choices,choices. I don't know what to buy next.

BTW, just found this great resource of this site .... Head-fi Photo Gallery. So ok ... what's not listed above can be found in the gallery. That's a pretty good list. Would be great to hear and collect some comparisons in one place.
post #3 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by m8o
....Help me decide what my next purchase will be. (under probably $500 but that can be flexible)


I bought the LD II+ for work, but it was oh so tough to part with it from my home and bring it in here (work)! I decided I need another amp @ home to make me happy! so.... Do I buy another Little Dot II+ for home, or another tube head-amp? [probably Chinese for the value proposition]
I have that amp and The Little Dot II+ is a very impressive amp and for the money, it's probably the best value and really tough to beat. I don't think you can do better for price and performance ratio....unless if you end up buying something used for a ridiculous cheap price or make a DIY amp perhaps. But again, the Little Dot II+ is tough to beat for such a cheap price as it performs amazingly.

Buying another Little Dot II+ would be a good choice however, If your budget is $500, why not get the Little Dot 3 for your home amp? It's more advanced with more power and I imagine that it probably kicks some serious butt. And I think it's only around $350 and it includes a seperate power supply unit I think. For all that, it looks like a killer deal. A steal actually it appears, just like the Little Dot II+.

For me personally, I would go a little over budget and spend $650 for the Headroom Hybrid Millet tube amp since the reviews are excellent. I imagine it's one of the best Millet amps in the world. However, that Little Dot 3 is very tempting in a way and it looks so cool.
post #4 of 48
The little dot 3 uses almost the same tubes as the little dot 2+, Chinese 4P1S in the back on both and Mullard EF91 tubes in the front for the LD3, Mullard EF92 tubes for the LD2+. I don’t really know the difference between an EF91 and an EF92.

I got the impression that the major cost difference between the LD2+ and the LD3 was the LD3's ability to power speakers directly. I went the route of using an external Solid State power amplifier for my speakers; I think you would really need some efficient speakers to work well with the LD3's limited power.

My only complaint about the LD2+ is that it does seem to kinda run out of gas at higher volumes, even on my 80ohm DT770's; however, I like lots of bass and equalize accordingly, so everything is relative.
post #5 of 48
For the budget you have established I would suggest an used Musical Fidelity X-Can V3. Occasionally they show up here and in Audiogon for about $300. Then I would do the PinkFloyd mods for about another $50 if you do $100 if someone else does them. I would also recommend building or buying a better power supply (but not the one from Musical Fidelity it is to much money). PinkFloyd has the plans on a nice external power supply which would cost you about $125 to $150 to build.

A very good option would be an used Mapletree Ear Purist + HD. Used they go for about $475 to $500. Good luck.

Or if a SS is acceptable look into the Heed CanAmp.
post #6 of 48
Money isn't everything but you get what you pay for.

Cheap's cheap.

There are probably more problems with the "inexpensive" chinese amps than any other broad range of components. Add to this the expensive shipping and prohibitively expensive shipping for repair and it's better to just buy the right amp to start.

The Earmax Pro is a time proven nice amp for the money.


Mitch
post #7 of 48
Ming Da mc66-ae is a quality amp. Ming da is a good brand, very reputable

The amp is build well, and sounds fantastic. I seriously dont think you would be unhappy with it
post #8 of 48

Don't forget the Consonance Cyber-20

This is a very capable and great sounding amp by one of the more internationally reputable Chinese brands.

Very good cost-performance. Used to be compared with amps 2 - 3 times its price.

f. Lo
post #9 of 48
The Wooaudio amp's are infact made in the U.S. The name is a bit deceiving.
post #10 of 48

PM Drarthurwells

Talk with Drartherwells about most of these... since he's tried most of them, and is in the best position to describe their relative attributes... and seems to have a pretty good sense of judgment in such matters.

But... be forewarned, he has a distinct preference for the BADA PH12 - perhaps justified... I wouldn't know. I would be tempted to try it however... before, I'd try the LD II+.

Personally... in this general price range, I (and several others) have found the WooAudio 3 (with the upgraded tubes), or the XCAN v3 with the PinkFloyd mods), tough to beat with Senns (high impedence phones)... and the the XCAN v3 (with mods) great with both Senns and Grados (low impedence phones). There are 2 WA3's with the right tubes on the for sale forum right now at great prices.

Good luck...
post #11 of 48
just as a side note m8o, i see you have a Shiba in your avatar. our Shiba is living large in NYC, enjoying the tunes too!
post #12 of 48
Thread Starter 
Thanx for the feedback everyone. Keep'm coming. I'm reading every one intently and researching here and on other boards.

fkclo, no I hadn't heard of it. Thank you very much for pointing it out.

Yes, thank you Gradofan2. I've read most (I can't say 'all' since there are so many! ) post by Drartherwells on his evaluations before and after my posting. Great material.

Jahn, Lol! Great shot. We actually have 2 Shibas, one 9 months and one 7 years, and a Yorkie 8; the two Shibas are very different with the puppy gregarious to the extreme and my older one timid to the extreme. I adopted the puppy because my older shiba was so much more playful then the yorkie and thought she's like the playmate. ...didn't work out exactly like that as it appears to have had the opposite effect on my older Shiba to some degree.

Where in NYC? We don't primarily live in NYC but we bought an apartment on the edge of the Gramecy area so my wife doesn't have to commute 2 hours or more each way, where she spends 4 nights a week. (we used to live right around there for years many years back) Would be great to bump into you on a dog walk or in a dog run. I've wanted to get to the Madison Square park dogrun for months but it is always raining when we go in weekends with the dogs. (walking 3 dogs in NYC in the rain sux) Hoping this weekend will be dry. ..maybe even go to Central Park with'm...
post #13 of 48
ah! we live in Battery Park City, which has three great dog runs, so we usually never leave the neighborhood with Pumpkin. she seems to like just walking up and down the river, but the nicest run is at the North Cove, which houses all of those yachts next to the Winter Garden downtown. the run in Union Square is the busiest, but also the lamest. nice place to see a ton of different breeds tho. The best run in the city imho is the one next to Chelsea Piers, right across the West Side Highway from the entrance to the Piers. That thing is nicer than the Bronx Zoo lol.
post #14 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by braillediver
Money isn't everything but you get what you pay for.

Cheap's cheap.

There are probably more problems with the "inexpensive" chinese amps than any other broad range of components. Add to this the expensive shipping and prohibitively expensive shipping for repair and it's better to just buy the right amp to start.

The Earmax Pro is a time proven nice amp for the money.


Mitch
I don’t agree on this. many of the chinese amps are as good as the more expensive counter parts. the build quality and performance are up there. the reduced labor costs, no product development fee, no marketing fee from a more expensive overseas amp reduces the cost of an product over all. this does not always mean a 100% accurate copy but for 95% accurate clone of a amp at 1/3 the price i think its a bargain.

Some logic could be applied on other commodities. Cheaper does not always = bad.
post #15 of 48
Agreed. Cheap isn't always cheap...though it sometimes is. You can get a fantastic amp for the money, while running a slightly higher risk of quality-control problems than you might find from a mainstream retailer. Just know what you're getting into.
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