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Review link: Single Power Square Wave

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
My review of Single Power's new Square Wave is up at StereoMojo! Questions, comments, and feedback here would be appreciated, thanks!

http://www.stereomojo.com/HeadphoneA...aveHPampReview
post #2 of 27
Nice review Asr. I have had a sample for about two weeks now. I agree, the amp is most excellent for solid state. I am betting the production models will address any issues you noted. But I like the three feet design. I can get the amp level on any surface.
post #3 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by sacd lover View Post
Nice review Asr. I have had a sample for about two weeks now. I agree, the amp is most excellent for solid state. I am betting the production models will address any issues you noted. But I like the three feet design. I can get the amp level on any surface.
Hi Earl,

It's been a while since I've seen you post. It's good to see you back here.

To preempt any nitpickers, you may not get it necessarily level, but you will get all three feet solidly planted on whatever surface the amp is on. The levelness of the amp depends on the levelness of the surface. Now we don't have to worry about that anymore!

Regards,

-Ken
post #4 of 27
Nice review, Steve. I do have one question however. The following passge seems a bit confusing to me:

Quote:
Relative to the HeadAmp GS-X though is where the Square Wave started showing its colors. Now most might say that these two amps aren't comparable - the Square Wave being as small as it is while the GS-X is more than three times its size, almost twice its price, and is a dual-chassis, dual-mono amp designed from the ground up to function as both unbalanced and balanced amp and pre-amp. But the GS-1 was noticeably below the Square Wave's level, and a higher reference point was needed in order to find out just how high the Square Wave could scale. Interestingly, the Square Wave almost competed with the GS-X. It didn't scrape up as much low-level detail, nor present as wide, deep, open a soundstage, nor have the sound of ease when sifting through layers and making them individually shimmer, but I'd say its sound qualifies it to sit in the less than $1K bracket alongside the GS-X. To put a number to it, I would estimate the Square Wave at bout 90% the performance of the GS-X.
Given that the GSX is a balanced amplifier, are you speaking with respect to the GSX running single ended or balanced?
post #5 of 27
nice review & good read!

When I read the OP I thought this thread/review is about a current production model amp, but it's a review about the Square Wave 3/2007 prototype Rev A. In fact, I scrolled down to the conclusion and didn't see the intro about it being a proto until I did a full article scan.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Asr from the Stereomojo proto review
"It is not a final production model as the amp still has not been released yet and there may be a few minor tweaks between the review unit and the production models once they start going out the door."
I hope the final production model will sound the same as the review proto unit and cost the same too.
post #6 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PFKMan23 View Post
Given that the GSX is a balanced amplifier, are you speaking with respect to the GSX running single ended or balanced?
Single-ended of course, my system isn't balanced yet and if it was I would've mentioned that in the review.
post #7 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Asr View Post
Single-ended of course, my system isn't balanced yet and if it was I would've mentioned that in the review.
Given that the GSX is essentially a balanced amp, it's easy to get confused given that it's ambiguous
post #8 of 27
Many people don't realize the GS-X even single ended has a few improvements over the GS-1 such as a better power supply.
post #9 of 27
Very nice read ASR! tempted but I have no money left after fixing my Bug.

Well there is always Christmas!!! Although I have been eying the Graham Slee Solo with the beefier PSU.
post #10 of 27
I´m also tempted, but this makes it so hard to read the review. Now i want another amp but i just bought an amp.

It´s an tube amp and i´m very satisfied with it´s sound. Also have a cheap solid state amp. But my AKG K-701 really wants a tube amp.

Only problem is, that the tube amp stands beside my bed. Last night i managed to switch the first buttom of the amp of before i fall into sleep. But until i was able to switch the second buttom off to stop the heating of the 4 tubes, i was lost and the amp heated the whole night again.

From Asr meet-impressions:
Quote:
possibly the Single Power Square Wave - it's transportable and it's black! I was originally eyeing something else but who knew Single Power was going to release a solid-state? I love solid-states! And I haven't owned a Single Power amp yet!
From the review:
Quote:
It has a sound that you'd expect from a premier vendor of some of the most exquisite tube amplifiers in the world
How much would i like the tube sound from a portable op-amp-based amp for my bed-rig!

My tube amp will go to my normal living place and i wound´t be able to fall asleep ´cause i know there is an amp that could drive me to heaven but i have to live without.-(

So i look what is maybe not good by this amp. Good mid-range and bass? I realy loves high range. Is the amp not good in this department?

Quote:
a high-end source is almost required for this amplifier, to prevent music from sounding like it's missing information.
Prefer to use FLAC encoded music from my iMac with an Firewire DAC/Audio-Interface. Maybe not good enough. And anyway, a thousand Dollar amp is to expensive for me, if i would have to upgrade everthing down to the interconnects i prefer more simpler (and cheaper!) equipment.

At least i can be happy that it could be better.
post #11 of 27
A bit OT...

Quote:
The AD2000 is a finicky headphone though with its unique sonic signature and there aren't many amps, even among only solid-states, that pair well with it.
I've never thought of the AD2000 as a particularly finicky headphone. It is a lot less demanding or particular of amplification and source than the W2002, W5000, L3000, K1000, SA5000 and R10. I would guess the Qualia, Edition 9, HP1000 and GS1000 are also more finicky than the AD2000.

The RS-1 also does relatively well with a wide variety of configurations, including some humbler amps. I think the AD2000 is more flexible and forgiving than the RS-1.

Even the HD650 and K701 can have a larger divergence between very good or very bad with some gear combos.

The AD2000 never really sounds horrible to me and seems to have a "minimum level of sound quality" that it always produces. Even directly from an iPod's headphone port, the AD2000 seems OK to me.
post #12 of 27
Very nice review. Looks like Mikhail has another winner on his hands.
post #13 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nattydraddy View Post
How much would i like the tube sound from a portable op-amp-based amp for my bed-rig!

So i look what is maybe not good by this amp. Good mid-range and bass? I realy loves high range. Is the amp not good in this department?
Er, the Square Wave is discrete, it does not use an op-amp. And I didn't mention treble in the review because it wasn't a "stand-out" feature of the sonics - not that it was bad, because it wasn't, it was more pedestrian rather than something special to write about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elephas View Post
A bit OT...

I've never thought of the AD2000 as a particularly finicky headphone. It is a lot less demanding or particular of amplification and source than the W2002, W5000, L3000, K1000, SA5000 and R10. I would guess the Qualia, Edition 9, HP1000 and GS1000 are also more finicky than the AD2000.

The RS-1 also does relatively well with a wide variety of configurations, including some humbler amps. I think the AD2000 is more flexible and forgiving than the RS-1.

Even the HD650 and K701 can have a larger divergence between very good or very bad with some gear combos.

The AD2000 never really sounds horrible to me and seems to have a "minimum level of sound quality" that it always produces. Even directly from an iPod's headphone port, the AD2000 seems OK to me.
I meant the AD2000 being finicky only in the sense of sonically pairing it with amps, not technically. I agree it sounds great on just about anything, but it can sound even better with the right amp - that's more what I meant. I haven't heard many amps that work up a daring duo with the AD2K.
post #14 of 27
Very nice review.
post #15 of 27
Nice review Steve! Thanks for posting it!
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