Thats interesting because when I was demo'ing new amplifiers I tried the Marantz and the NAD A/B and personally preferred the NAD because it had more punchy bass through the headphone jack... The quality on both was good though but they just had different sound signatures....
It is interesting to hear that because it confirms what I was thinking, especially as you have had a lot of experience with various amplifiers.... I think I will try a dedicated amp at some point but I don't think the difference will be quite as massive as people make out unless maybe I switched from SS to tubes.
The headphone jack on the 326Bee has an impedance of 68ohms whereas the HD650 are 300ohms.... Do this sound about right? Isnt it supposed to be 10x the impedance?
Both NAD and Marantz, but especially Marantz is famed for its signature sound. It's a very mids-centric sound, however compared to the more natural bass I'm accustomed to, the midbass hump of HD650 seems highly accentuated with the Marantz. Not disturbingly so, but it felt unfamiliar. NAD should be a little more linear, if not slightly bass tilted. They also have something of a signature sound. The Marantz is the closest I have found in an SS amp to the sound of Mullard tubes in the Lyr with the mid-emphasis. HD650 sounds good on it, though. I still like my Lyr & tubes better for them
Yeah, especially for HD650, if you're looking for different I'd suggest tubes. A dedicated headphone amp won't be a huge upgrade from a really good stereo separates HP out. Versus an AVR, that's a different matter entirely....the HP out is garbage on nearly all of them until you get up to the really pricy stuff, and even then, not always. Consider your NAD costs as much as some of the pricier AVRs and you get a clearer picture of what goes into them
HD650 and impedance matching is an interesting hobby of its own. I think too much goes into it and too little specs are publsihed on the amp side to be of much use. It seems impossible to "go by the numbers" because the numbers often don't include all the needed variables. Going by sound or by known "good synergy" units seem to be the way to go. It's not difficult (or expensive) to find things that pair well with HD650, but I think trial & error works more reliably than number crunching in this case.