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post #166 of 405
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgs9200m View Post
As for the gain setting on the Apache,
I find the Low gain setting actually improves the sound a bit--firmer bass
and a more open soundstage. It's really subtle, but I just felt more comfortable with it after lots of A-B testing.
i actually prefer the medium gain setting for all my headphones, except my grados. but maybe that is because i have no trouble finding a proper volume level on medium gain. with my grados things just get too loud too early on medium gain, so i use low. i have toyed around with high gain a little bit, but don't don't see myself ever using it with headphones - maybe as a preamp, it has more use.

Quote:
One more thing. The Apache sounds superb through the single-ended inputs. A-B'd the same cable type in SE and Balanced mode and really could hear no difference, no matter how hard I tried. I have my Indras on the SE inputs an I am really happy with them there. (The Indras remove that last bit of haze around voices and other images and remove some bass distortion.) So I would tell Apache users not to obsess over balanced input just to please the Apache.
wait. i'm confused here. you are comparing SE to BAL using SE interconnects. if so, i don't think that is a good way to compare the two. i compared SE to BAL using SE interconnects for SE and BAL interconnects for balanced - both silver resolution ICs. i found that the sound signature was the same between the two but the similarities stopped there. SE was noticeably leaner with a more compressed or narrow soundstage. for every headphone i have, i prefer Balanced over SE. my RS1 is my only SE headphone. it's so good, i can't force myself to get rid of it. i should reterminate it to Bal. wish i could do that stuff myself. oh well.

my Apache is with Ray now - getting the mod and new op-amp. no idea when i will get it back. hopefully sooner than later. looking forward to the mod.
post #167 of 405
OK, sorry, maybe I wasn't clear enough (lesson learned: don't drink and post, especially late at night).
I was using only SE headphones, so that was held constant. I had 2 pairs of ICs (K-S Emotions), 1 SE, 1 balanced. I connected them simultaneously to my DAC and the Apache (bal-to-bal, SE-to-SE), thus 2 parallel paths into the Apache (inputs 1 and 3). I switched back and forth Apache between inputs 1(bal) and 3(SE) and could hear no difference. The real difference was when I introduced the Indra (I only have a SE pair) and that trumped everything, lifting a haze around objects and making them more dense and pure, and making the bass much more natural and undistorted.

I guess I was trying to make the point that, at least from my tests, [1] the Apache seems to benefit greatly from as good interconnects as you throw at it,
and [2] I don't think it matters whether the Apache receives a balanced or SE input.

As far as balanced phones go, I am working on getting a an APS balanced cable for my 650s, and I'll see how that goes (but I've got fine results with all my SE phones for now).

Thanks for letting me know about my unclear post.
post #168 of 405
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgs9200m View Post
I was using only SE headphones. I guess I was trying to make the point that ... I don't think it matters whether the Apache receives a balanced or SE input [for SE use.]
yes. the sound SE - assuming the output stages of the source are equal - should be the same, regardless of the IC path (SE or BAL). and i have done and found the same. to my ears, there was no perceivable difference in sound using SE headphones from SE or BAL path of the source. but i wouldn't expect there to be one and if anything, i would think the SE would be better in theory because it would be a pure SE signal from start to finish.

to be honest, the first time i plugged in my SE headphones, i was surprised that i got sound using the BAL input. i thought BAL for BAL phones and SE for SE phones. i didn't know i could go BAL to SE. i thought i would get no signal or it would sound a bit distorted. but that is not the case, so i guess it could be said that you only need one good BAL IC to use the Apache for ALL headphones.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rgs9200m View Post
As far as balanced phones go, I am working on getting a an APS balanced cable for my 650s, and I'll see how that goes (but I've got fine results with all my SE phones for now).
curious about impressions with that cable. let us know how it works out.
post #169 of 405
OK, thanks vcoheda. By the way, I've got RS1's too from 5 years back and the bowls were really annoying on my head.
I bought some comfypads and that made them way more comfortable and I thought improved the sound (less in-your-face). I've got some extra unused comfypads somewhere I think somewhere if you want them, PM me. Ultimately, the RS1s were just projected too much in the mids and I gave up on them (but still have them...).
post #170 of 405
I was up at Ray's yesterday and we went to a turntable clinic with Micheal Fremer at a high-end reference dealer but Ray was still gracious enough to perform the Mod on my Apache that I brought with me. Ray switched out the 3300 caps for 4700 caps. I already had the LME 49710 chips so I only needed the mod. Ray said to give the caps a couple of days and then let him know how the Apache sounded.

We did fire it up at Rays' before I left on his system. I must say I did like the sound. I look forward to getting the new caps burned in.

I also must say, Ray's wife Grace is great. She is always looking out for Ray's guest.
post #171 of 405
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Addict View Post
I was up at Ray's yesterday and we went to a turntable clinic with Micheal Fremer at a high-end reference dealer but Ray was still gracious enough to perform the Mod on my Apache that I brought with me. Ray switched out the 3300 caps for 4700 caps. I already had the LME 49710 chips so I only needed the mod. Ray said to give the caps a couple of days and then let him know how the Apache sounded.

We did fire it up at Rays' before I left on his system. I must say I did like the sound. I look forward to getting the new caps burned in.
that's great news. my Apache is with Ray now and i am getting the new op amps and mod (the different caps). hope to have it back soon. sounds like it doesn't take too long to do. thanks for update and let us know about further impressions/differences with the mod.
post #172 of 405
Got mine back from Ray today fully modded. It sounds great of course! Gone is the low gain noise and it is a little warmer but not too much. I A/B'd it against my WA6 for about two hours tonight SE with D5000's. I found out about 30 minutes in that the gain needs to be on Med to drive these right (SE as I haven't balanced this pair yet). There was differences while on the low gain against the WA6 and the Apache didn't win that one.... On med gain it is a different animal and it over took the WA6. It has a nearly tube like warmth to it now. The sound stage is huge, imaging is great, base is tight and it sounds very real. This was all done with loseless via a Transporter. I'm happy and will post more in depth thoughts as I get to know it again. Something is different I'm not able to get my hands around yet. More to follow.
post #173 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmk005 View Post
Heck, I am LOVING my B-52 with a Benchmark DAC1 USB, I imagine your EMMLABS CDP will sound even more outstanding.

david
I can't wait now! Still 2 more weeks T_T

Emmlabs sounds very impressive. Especially when you compare it with other players, the difference is clear. Very powerful control.
post #174 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmk005 View Post
Heck, I am LOVING my B-52 with a Benchmark DAC1 USB, I imagine your EMMLABS CDP will sound even more outstanding.

david
BTW,dmk005. Do you know what standard tubes B-52 is using?
post #175 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by yuchengxx View Post
BTW,dmk005. Do you know what standard tubes B-52 is using?
Sure, the rear tubes are Sylvania 6189s and the tubes in front are Philips 5687s. Each of these sets are matched pairs. The back two on the right are for the pre-outs. I have some 1950 RCA bronze plate 5687s ready to be rolled but am so happy with my current sound I am being lazy.
  • david
post #176 of 405
Thanks david.
it's a good news to me but bad to my wallet. Seems B-52 still has room for improvement and upgrade!
post #177 of 405
I like to rationalize and say it is future-proof and flexible to your listening pleasure!
  • david
post #178 of 405
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsonad View Post
Got mine back from Ray today fully modded. It sounds great of course! Gone is the low gain noise and it is a little warmer but not too much. I A/B'd it against my WA6 for about two hours tonight SE with D5000's. I found out about 30 minutes in that the gain needs to be on Med to drive these right (SE as I haven't balanced this pair yet). There was differences while on the low gain against the WA6 and the Apache didn't win that one.... On med gain it is a different animal and it over took the WA6. It has a nearly tube like warmth to it now. The sound stage is huge, imaging is great, base is tight and it sounds very real. This was all done with loseless via a Transporter. I'm happy and will post more in depth thoughts as I get to know it again. Something is different I'm not able to get my hands around yet. More to follow.
sounds awesome.

anxiously waiting for mine. hopefully late next week i will have it (maybe).
post #179 of 405
It bothered me all day, this sound I couldn't put my finger on. I even called Ray about it (which as we all know he is a big help). It hit me on the way home and was already posted once in this thread; in A/B'ing I was listening SE when the source was hooked up balanced. BAD IDEA.... I've got it hooked up from the same source with SE and balanced now listening SE and the difference is what I couldn't put my finger on. I wouldn't recommend doing this Stupid mistake, easily fixed and now all I can say is WOW! I love this Amp
post #180 of 405
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsonad View Post
It bothered me all day, this sound I couldn't put my finger on. I even called Ray about it (which as we all know he is a big help). It hit me on the way home and was already posted once in this thread; in A/B'ing I was listening SE when the source was hooked up balanced. BAD IDEA.... I've got it hooked up from the same source with SE and balanced now listening SE and the difference is what I couldn't put my finger on. I wouldn't recommend doing this Stupid mistake, easily fixed and now all I can say is WOW! I love this Amp
are you saying that using input 1 or 2 (the balanced inputs) with a SE headphone gave you a bad sound or a different sound than using input 3 or 4 (the single ended inputs) from the same source using that SE headphone. because, as stated above, i found no perceivable difference in sound using SE or BAL inputs from the same source with SE headphones. both pathways sounded the same to me for SE use.

i don't follow.

what difference did you notice. and why is it a "bad" idea. is that something ray said. is there a reason i should not use SE headphones with the balanced inputs.

thanks
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