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EAR HP-4 : are you experienced ? - Page 2

post #16 of 61
Does anyone know if the knobs are plated or anything? I’d like to polish them with some Happich Semichrome metal polish but I don’t know how the knobs are constructed. They don’t tarnish like the RKV \ Earmaxknobs so they aren’t bare brass.

For now the first tweak I’ll do is replace the toroid transformer bolt with a larger diameter brass one.


Mitch
post #17 of 61
how does this thing compare to a melos maestrobator? It looks gorgeous, congrats on the purchase.
post #18 of 61
Here’s a headphone review where carlo (Carlo is the melos maestrobator) uses the HP4 and a heavily modified melos. While not exact- different model melos (sha here) and the HP4 uses stock tubes (where the melos uses the best possible tubes).

http://www6.head-fi.org/forums/showthread.php?t=20509

“The HP4 can decay in a way that a Melos (including my heavily modified Gold-Reference) can't and probably never will.)”


The SHA Gold I had was pretty stunning in it’s own right. You taking good care of it Goredwingdings?


Mitch
post #19 of 61
I have spent more than a week with this amp months ago. Sound is greatful to me with RS1. Very well overall controlled and refined. It smooths the tones but not cuts ANY informations from the recording. The midrange is super detailed and clear. Bass is plentiful but not very fast. Sound stage is large and RIGHT. This is such a large soundstage I hardly heard with RS1. I tried many other amps but few of them have it drived right too. The last thing of this amp is the power and the energy it delivers. Sound fully surrounds my ears and like sitting just right in front of me. Excellent experience!
post #20 of 61
One more thing, it pairs super great with HD600 too but I dont think it likes HD650. The best amps I have tried with 650 are IMO Cary's SEI 80 s, 300SEI, SP's ZR and MPX3 (Dont know the supra).
post #21 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by braillediver

The SHA Gold I had was pretty stunning in it’s own right. You taking good care of it Goredwingdings?


Mitch
He was, but now I am
post #22 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by braillediver

“The HP4 can decay in a way that a Melos (including my heavily modified Gold-Reference) can't and probably never will.)”


The SHA Gold I had was pretty stunning in it’s own right. You taking good care of it Goredwingdings?


Mitch

Hi Mitch I decided to let it go. While the Melos is fine in it role as headphone amp/headphone pre-amp. I felt the time to go back to 2 channel setup was calling again.

It was a shame to let the melos go as well as the hp-4. (zanth got it). But you know we move on.
post #23 of 61
I just read that comparo - notice he didn't share impressions of the HP-1 with the Maestrobated Melos. He was too afraid to say "this combo kicks all previous combos!"
post #24 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahn
I just read that comparo - notice he didn't share impressions of the HP-1 with the Maestrobated Melos. He was too afraid to say "this combo kicks all previous combos!"

In fact, you are dead right. Having spoken to carlo prior to writing his review, during and afterwards, he specifically wanted to avoid any mention because he knew it would bias his mind. In essence, at the end, he was looking mightily at the Omega II's but he just kept coming back to the HP1/Melos. It was the perfect system for him.
post #25 of 61
muahahahaha.
post #26 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zanth
In fact, you are dead right. Having spoken to carlo prior to writing his review, during and afterwards, he specifically wanted to avoid any mention because he knew it would bias his mind. In essence, at the end, he was looking mightily at the Omega II's but he just kept coming back to the HP1/Melos. It was the perfect system for him.
Thanks for the info Zanth. So far it's the perfect system for me as well.
post #27 of 61
Thread Starter 
hp4 landing soon
post #28 of 61
Thread Starter 

amp is landed

embrional impressions , note that these are very preliminar ..
..and these are after burning amp and ears up to 2 hours because before the amp sounded like a cheap solid state transistor amp , no good bass at all and some high pump - sp that it left me incredulous on the first 2-3 listening sessions

The sound situation on ears is very .. right ? I don't know how to tell it other way , palpable is a term that comes in mind - what I mean is that the the stage seems to be traced very right and quite nicely , smoothly faithful of the recording and of the source .
Overall sound is quite upfront , powerful , more clear then smooth -still smooth- and on the slow side , thing that I hope I can cure with some tubes change ; not relaxed and not lacking slam and prat .

The slam is not in the low bass region but , what I seem to hear , it is from midbass and lower mids - bit of pump/colour here.

The mids , and around mid region , are rendered very beautifully and right , and vocals are clear still soft , with no edges or shrillness causing fatigue in hearing singers' voices , just soft and clear . Vocals take easily some attention on the stage as their position is very ideal front and little up .
It's very easy to shift attention though through different parts and instruments .

Separation of frqs. , stage , separation of instruments are nothing short that superb . The combination of these qualities yet make the amp no-second tier to anything I have or have had .
It handles details with a very nice softness , and take out from the record the different parts well separated with right dimensions and good focus , and also good L R behavior and coeherence .

There's no melt among the different studio and mix record spaces .

There's clearness in the mids and upper mids in spades , it doesn't even sound as a tube amp in this regard - but with current stock tubes configuration I seem to miss the highest highs and the lower highs are bit overpronounced , and coming out little out of the picture at times .
It is not bass monster amp neither lean - but it doesn't reach and push the lowest octave out as it probably should . In this regard my vintage amp + eq. system serves better

Tube sound ?
yes, there's soft bloom across bass and mids but I don't hear it as a bass-mids bump .. the bloom is more sourrounding then inflating a part of the frqs


Another character of the amp is in the way it render notes and timbres : decay is so good that's better then real , and it's distant from being a soft-hollow kind of decay . Drums sound so well that I clearly prefer them to any headphone-amp combo I've ever tried and - this is mainly due to the excellent and clear portray of the last part of the sound .

My surprise , my recabled Hd600 sound really good with this amp , not that with other amps they sound bad but probably never sounded so good ; my eq+vintage amp ( which serves them quite daily ) finally has found a comptetitor .
The two systems in real sound different enough to say they're not comparable ; they offer different qualities ; the thing is the hp-4 is more right and respect more and better the recording dimensions ; the first system render the bass in a better way better ( more deepness , more body , more sollid bass , more texture too .. ) and for a Wadia having an amp that's able to work out well the bass is a need .

To my headphoned ears it is a reference amp , and on abolute scale for what I've heard up to now ; it is also musical and I find my ears easily happy on music .

I have some reserves at the moment on his synergy with hp-2
ps-1 are away at the moment , sigh ..


A thing that I have noticed , if I plug ICS in -to power amp- position and power amp button is off they work as source for the amp - the strange thing is that the power amp outputs - turned into inputs if power amp button off - sound better then the regular input plugs .. any hint - opinion ?

and sorry for the limited vocabulary and sintax ..I'm reading back my impressions and trying to repair ; the hp-4 just excited me and those are the results
post #29 of 61
Thread Starter 
I've made some grammar corrections and I'll make some others tomorrow , at least now you can try to read it without getting serious headache
post #30 of 61
Thread Starter 
fyi I've corrected some sintax again in my long first raw impresions post

another weird thing - with the amp off and hp2 plugged in I can hear music , weird that hp-2 in this way sound very nice .

hp2 in low z plug sound with very short stage depth , bit warm ( midbass ) and bit bright ( low highs ) , highest highs rolled off ; hp2 in high z plug sound more decent , still I feel the highs are rolled off .

hp2 in low z plug , amp off , sound flat and nice and stage lacks any tubey congestion - volume is too low , anyhow I've used them when waking up this morning , silent environment , and I have had the impression that the sound is sweet and flat that way .


"problems" that I'd like to address at this point seem to be : the rolled off highs , colour in the bass/midbass region , and a little more fast sound .

any comment to my findings ?
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