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WooAudio WA5 and Akg K1000's are in the house - Upgraded PSU is in 6/2 - Page 3

post #31 of 134
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hellenback View Post
What WOULD you do if you couldn't tease people on headfi?
  • Eat ice cream in front of kids?
  • Pretend to throw a stick for a dog to fetch?
  • Give a review of this glowing pile of hardware (working on it)....
  • etc...
Cheers,
post #32 of 134
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeymad View Post
  • Eat ice cream in front of kids?
  • Pretend to throw a stick for a dog to fetch?
  • Give a review of this glowing pile of hardware (working on it)....
  • etc...
Cheers,
The options ARE endless aren' they?
post #33 of 134
Looks and packaging are obviously excellent, is there anything about the sound that is worth talking about? Difference Woo 5 and 6?
post #34 of 134
Congrats on a beautiful set-up. Sweet!
post #35 of 134
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anders View Post
Looks and packaging are obviously excellent, is there anything about the sound that is worth talking about?

Obvously the sound is not what this post was about.
post #36 of 134
Thread Starter 
And now.....

Introducing......

A little WA5 WE 300B ... Magic...

I love this stuff......







Cheers,
post #37 of 134
Nothing much better than tubes, lights out and the full sound of Music.
post #38 of 134
woah.

that 2nd pic is trippy :dazed & confused:
post #39 of 134
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackmore View Post
I will bring Scotch, would you pay my fly ticket

CONGRATS!
Lucky for me, I only live 40 miles away..
post #40 of 134
Nice pics Mikey! Those WE 300Bs are awesome. How are you enjoying my former pair of Ken-Rads?
post #41 of 134
Thread Starter 
I didn't know the history Volt.... I like it very nice.....

And you get to visit them again soon.

Cheers,
post #42 of 134
wow, really nice pics! have you tried changing the rectifiers on the power
unit? 5u4g are good but there are others that are better...
post #43 of 134
Thread Starter 
thanks takezo, I was a little bored last night so I took about 20 pictures of my 300B's and the SP es-1 in the dark.

I have only played around with various 5u4g's at this point.

Cheers,
post #44 of 134
Thread Starter 
So I was asked about the WA5 and the WA6(maxed) in regards to pushing the HD650's. Well I had not done that combo before so here are my thoughts.

This is pretty much my notes (not really a writeup)

First up is the WA5:




Marantz SA-7S1 -> AudioQuest SKY -> WA5 w/WE 300B -> Standard cable HD650 (no foam)



Audiophile vocal recordings - Chesky SACD:

Rebecca Pidgeon - Spanish Harlem
  • Bass is big - too much, over done, too much bloom?
  • Vocal is clear, dead center.
  • Piano - slight on the tinny side (shrill)
Livingston Taylor - Isn't she lovely
  • Whistle - punchy and dead center (sounds like a whistle)
  • Guitar - slightly muted and pushed back further
  • Vocal - slightly hollow, bass is emphasized giving it an unnatural sound.
  • Good 3D soundstage with height
Kenny Rankin - 'Round Midnight
  • Bass - BIG, flushed out and lush, pushed a bit
  • Vocal - more natural than Taylor, slight bass heavy and pushed into a nasal sound, locked dead center.
Harry Connick Jr. - She - CD

First track - She
  • Vocal - edgy (like it should be), Wanders a bit, but not out of character.
  • Bass - is overblown at the beginning but settles in nicely, if pushed at all, there is a flabbiness that shows up in the right phone.
  • Instruments - placed nicely you can hear where they all are.
Fourth Track - Trouble
  • Vocal - slight graininess (gravel) in the lead,
  • Percussion - setting in the background and flushing out the sound strange.
  • Piano - kind on top of things and sounding a bit tinny (standup piano?)
NickelBack - All the Right Reasons - CD

Third Track - Photograph
  • Vocal - wavers just a bit with the beat, holds good tone
  • Guitars - during chorus - turn into white noise, otherwise defused in both channels
  • Bass - lost mostly in chorus - not deep but underpins the guitar and vocal
  • Drum set - not separated much from the rest of the presentation, but it is a general radio song anyway.
Seventh Track - Next contestant
  • Vocal - held pretty steady, not lost in the mix, tone is again good
  • Guitar - nice plucking sound that travels holds up as the rest of the music is playing
  • Bass - lost in the mix (maybe not the phones fault)
  • Drums - compressed until the end, they do punch through with the bass this time.
  • Overall a good presentation
Tears for Fears - Songs from the big Chair - OMR mo-fi CD

Track Two - The Working Hour
  • Opening sax - punchy, clear, lower notes go slightly hollow.
  • Overall sound - slightly compressed
  • Drums - very distant, not very authoritative
  • Bass - just about right, tone and snap
  • Vocal - airy, slightly fluctuating with bass hits and drum hits, but does punch through the instrument mix
  • Guitar - well into the mix, but there.
Track three - Everybody wants to Rule the World
  • Soundstage - smeared from one side to the other - full sound
  • Vocal - back in the mix a little bit, but it is held centered and almost no fluctuations
  • Guitar - just chord hits, but they are there and coming through as they should, plucking on the bridge... nice
  • Keyboard - okay, just one note sets up a strange harmonic in the upper bass
Amadeus Soundtrack - SACD 2004

First Track - Symphony No. 25 - 1st Movement
  • Violins - slightly shrill on the top end and when ensemble is all playing
  • Bass - a little chunky, but nice tone
  • Woodwinds - great tone and rock solid placement
  • Mid strings - pushed back further than would seem natural
  • Horns - not coming through the mix - slightly muted
ATB - Seven Years - CD

Track six - Far beyond
  • For the first time I don't have much to say.
  • Bass/percussion/keyboards are mixed and presented clean and fresh sounding with a huge soundstage
  • Have I found a dance/techno rig?
  • I am impressed at how fast these headphone and rig are sounding. Reminds me a bit (just a bit) of my STAX
Beethoven Symphony No 7 - Karajan/Berliner - Deutche Grammophon - SACD

Track one - Movement One
  • Violins - silky, nice presentation, well integrated in the mix and can be heard throughout
  • Woodwinds - pushed slightly back (but not muffled), great tone
  • Bass - lush when playing small, slightly lost in the major movements (muffled and slightly muddy)
  • Mid strings - very slightly hidden, but come through with enough authority during the large passages to hold the soundstage together
  • Horns - Raspiness in the upper ranges, but pop thought the crowd when they are needed.
Sarah McLachlan - Surfacing - CD

Track 6 - Witness
  • Bass - Warm, Big, a little loose, but nothing to worry about
  • Vocal - Strong and centered, just the slightest nasal in passages
  • Strings and other - kind of spread out around the stage along with the other vocals, Great effect not much wrong here
  • Guitar solo - not very nice, tone is scattered and not localized presentation.
NickelCreek - This Side - SACD

Track One - Smooth Song
  • Violin - Harsh on the upper, nice presentation in the lower
  • Guitar - Slight colorization in the notes, metallic sound
  • Other strings - all are not bad, but most with the slight shrill/shimmer/metallic sound
  • Bass - back in the mix, but it is just under pinning other notes
Track Two - Spit on a Stranger
  • Vocal - just a slight amount of harshness in the upper ranges, nice tone, and locked in dead center
  • Bass - not a huge presentation, but everything is alright here
  • Other vocals - spread around the soundstage, and you can pick them all out.
Track three - Speak
  • Vocal (male) - Dead center, just a slight nasal feature
  • Vocal (female) - dead center again, nothing wrong at all
  • Strings - more natural and warm, in the upper ranges the shrill shows up a bit.
  • Whispering - you can pick out where they are, but not the words
  • Bass and percussion - Gets lost a bit, get captured by the vocals so much.
Tenacious D - Tenacious D - CD

Track 18 - Rock your Socks
  • Bass - Good, nice weight, detail, punch
  • Drums - Drums have good impact, cymbals have nice crash
  • Vocal - vocal is back in the mix, but tone is good,
  • Guitar - okay (not recorded well)
Yes - 90125 - CD

Track Nine - Hearts
  • Vocal - The high notes are slightly shrill
  • Bass - it is all there, but surprisingly hidden a little
  • Drums - Good underpinning of the bass notes, but mixed down just a bit
  • Guitar - sounds like it should, no issues.
  • Keyboards - overpowered by rest of music
Sade - Love Deluxe - CD
  • Track one - No Ordinary Love
  • Bass - punchy and well rounded.
  • Vocal - great tone, and impact but can go slightly nasal during passages
  • Keyboards and other - spread out in the soundstage filling it in, no real position to it
Overall enjoyable. There seems to be something going on that is not quite right. Maybe some tube rolling is in order.


Then comes the small but mighty WA6 (maxed):




Marantz SA-7S1 -> Audio Quest SKY -> WA6 (maxed) -> Standard cable HD650 (no foam)



Audiophile vocal recordings - Chesky SACD:

Track one - Rebecca Pidgeon - Spanish Harlem
  • Bass - large with weight, slight mute
  • Vocal - airy, good tone, large center presentation (echo around soundstage), slight hollow sound when pushed
  • Piano - soft at first, punchy during solo, rounded notes
  • Violin and other - okay soundstage presentation, fairly close to head
Track two - Livingston Taylor - Isn't she lovely
  • Whistle - rounded notes, just slight grain
  • Guitar - slightly muted notes, good tone throughout
  • Vocal - good since of space, forward presentation, holds up well through range
  • Good 3D soundstage
Track six - Kenny Rankin - 'Round Midnight
  • Bass - lush bass presentation, not overly detailed
  • Vocal - good since of space (again), large presentation, no problems here
Harry Connick Jr. - She - CD

First track - She
  • Vocal - locked in dead center. Good tone and air (since of space with the rest of the group)
  • Bass - Pushed a bit, but large and sharp, not overly detailed
  • Drums - are live and with impact, crash cymbals are right there
  • Instruments - Soundstage not large but with enough detail to pick everything out.
  • It grooves... nice...
Fourth Track - Trouble
  • Vocal - center and punchy, very very slight hollowness when really pushed
  • Percussion - forward presentation, okay snap to them
  • Piano - bass notes have nice weight, no dropouts in range
NickelBack - All the Right Reasons - CD

Third Track - Photograph
  • Vocal - pulsating (recording?), held in center with nice air
  • guitars - during chorus - gets slightly lost, but still hold together, otherwise distinct left and right playing
  • Bass - lost mostly in chorus - not deep but underpins the guitar and vocal (no change here)
  • Drum set - kick comes through nice, most of the rest of the kit is mixed down, not much there
Seventh Track - Next Contestant
  • Vocal - held center steady, tone is good, good growl
  • Guitar - nice plucking (forward) sound that travels, holds up as the rest of the music is playing, Drives the chorus
  • Bass - lost in the mix (maybe not the phones fault)
  • Drums – good snap and power
  • Nice track, soundstage has collapsed, but the in your face nature of the some works
Tears for Fears - Songs from the big Chair - OMR mo-fi CD

Track Two - The Working Hour
  • Opening sax - clear, not a lot of detail, back presentation
  • Overall sound – more open, okay separation
  • Drums - very distant, not very authoritative (same)
  • Bass – good tone, okay depth, not detailed
  • Vocal - airy, good tone, holds up in the mix
Track three - Everybody wants to Rule the World
  • Soundstage – everything is in front of you, slight compression
  • Vocal – good tone, not forward, slightly muted notes, never over washed by other instruments
  • Guitar – guitar comes through the entire piece, no real problems
  • Keyboard – good under pinning of the song, nice sound
Amadeus Soundtrack - SACD 2004

First Track - Symphony No. 25 - 1st Movement
  • Violins – edgy, nice smoothness when playing with the ensemble
  • Bass – nice weight and overall structure
  • Woodwinds - great tone and rock solid placement
  • Mid strings – good placement and tone and authority (doing their job)
  • Horns – punching through with authority and tone
  • Soundstage not very big (slightly crowded group)
ATB - Seven Years - CD

Track six - Far beyond
  • Bass – nice kick/thump… stays there even when everything else is playing along
  • Percussion/keyboards are mixed and presented clean and fresh sounding – tighter soundstage (the club is closing in around you)
  • Gives a play along effect – have to keep reminding myself I am reviewing.
Beethoven Symphony No 7 - Karajan/Berliner - Deutche Grammophon - SACD

Track one - Movement One
  • Violins – not the detail that I would like, but the sound is correct.
  • Woodwinds – great wood/hollow sound, tone is correct
  • Bass – can follow all the bass notes grinding out under the melody, great weight
  • Mid strings – great support for the melody and structure of the soundstage sounds like it should
  • Horns – distant, overridden by the mid-strings in front of them, when pushed, there was a slight raspiness but not bad
  • Soundstage – okay in scale, you really feel more like the conductor, surrounded (closely) by the players. Not sitting back with a large soundstage in front of you. (Still, made me conduct a bit)
Sarah McLachlan - Surfacing - CD

Track 6 - Witness
  • Bass - Warm, Big, less detail
  • Vocal - Airy and centered, slightly bass heavy
  • Keyboard – pulsating giving a Wawa effect (it should)
  • Strings and other – kind of confusing, they seem to drop in and out of the soundstage (forward and back)
  • Guitar solo – growling low most of the song, Echo is very noticeable, just notes not much detail
  • Not how I would choose to listen to this song
NickelCreek - This Side - SACD

Track One - Smooth Song
  • Violin – pulled back a bit, nothing harsh about it in tone, more detail please
  • Guitar – sharp, nice presentation, pops nicely with impact
  • Other strings – lots of notes not much detail, but all tones are nice
  • Bass – driving, not real big, but good tone and pace
  • How high can I turn this up…… ????
Track Two - Spit on a Stranger
  • Vocal – center little bit of air, slight grain
  • Bass – warm and big (enough), no detail
  • Other vocals and instruments – close left and right, small soundstage, and as the playing gets louder it closes in more
Track three - Speak
  • Vocal (male) - Dead center, airy, very slightly hollow
  • Vocal (female) - dead center again, slight nasal
  • Strings - natural and warm, all the way through
  • Whispering - you can pick out where they are (close), not enough detail
  • Bass and percussion – close presentation, bass is not that big, but warm, and more forward
Tenacious D - Tenacious D - CD

Track 18 - rock your Socks
  • Bass – Good punch and weight
  • Drums - Drums have good impact, cymbals have nice crash
  • Vocal - vocal is back in the mix, but tone is good,
  • Guitar – better tone, but pushed back

Yes - 90125 - CD

Track Nine - Hearts
  • Vocal – Jon’s high is held well, good tone
  • Bass – bass is back in the mix, just kind of traveling along without much impact, until the guitar solo, hold it all together
  • Drums – good impact and presentation all the way around, pushed up in the mix a bit
  • Guitar – really only shows up for the solo and then has a lot of fun, wanted more detail, but tone was good.
  • Keyboards – doubling of the singing can be clearly followed
  • Soundstage is compressed,
Sade - Love Deluxe - CD

Track one - No Ordinary Love
  • Bass – Warm, encompassing, good tone
  • Vocal – floating in center, great tone, airy, with impact
  • Keyboards and other – kind of filling and empty soundstage
  • All about the bass and vocal on this one (not bad at all – just need a bit of detail)
I found that I enjoyed the WA6 more, but the soundstage was more compressed and the detail that I do love was not there as much, but some of the major flaws that are in my (current) WA5 setup is worse.

Had fun thought.

Cheers,
post #45 of 134
Wow, that was a lot of work and very informative.

On the 6, did you try any other rectifiers or driver/power tubes? I find this to be really important, as I am sure you have read. With Syl, which are ok, I find that the Marconi are much better and that grain is gone and tremendous punch to the bass and openness is availed by using the metal base GZ34. I know the metal base is expensive but it adds another dimension to the sound. There are other rectifiers that dow well also and cost much,much less than the metal base.

Again, great write up!
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