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NAD Receiver beats LD MKIVse?? - Page 5

post #61 of 191
Very clear, very interesting Scompton. Thanks again! I'm happy to learn that I could get even more mileage from my NAD.

BTW, how would you compare the Stax sound to your K601 or DT880? Would you say that it's a step ahead or just different?

Pardon me if this question is a bit out of focus.
post #62 of 191
The SR-Gamma is a big step forward. The SR-5 is a small step forward. The SR-3 clone is different. I also just got an SR-3 but I haven't listened to it yet. The only other stat I own is a Playback 70 which is one of the worst headphones I own.

Two other headphones are, for me, clearly better than the K601 and DT880. The MB Quart QP 85 and the Yamaha HP-1. The QP85 is a float so won't fit everyone's taste.
post #63 of 191
Yamaha HP-1? Is that old?
post #64 of 191
It's an ortho from the 70s. There's a picture in the first post of the http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f4/ort...oundup-111193/
post #65 of 191
Thread Starter 
Does anyone know what kind of 'headphone out' they put in the older NAD's (like my 712, that age), resistors, opamps, little mkiv's?
post #66 of 191
This happened to me -- absolute sonic nirvana, the first time I plugged my new PRO 750's into the SA8001 headphone jack, with a very good quality CD playing.
No kidding. Unbelievable sound quality -- totally amazed me.
I was just plugging them in to start the usual new-can burn-in.

I then tried several other good cans, with similar results, proving that good SQ CAN be had, even *before* hooking-up one of my dedicated headphone amps.

This is a CD player that I could happily use without a headphone amp, and not feel that I am missing hardly anything -- you gotta hear it to believe it.
Marantz says they put extra effort into the SA8001's headphone circuitry, and it really shows.

A relatively low-priced headphone amp would *most likely* sound worse, instead of better -- seen that happen many times before, with other quality players over the years, with very rare exceptions.
It takes a really decent amp to equal or surpass the SA8001 headphone jack SQ.
The best I've heard from a source player -- and I have some good stuff.
post #67 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by vvanrij View Post
Does anyone know what kind of 'headphone out' they put in the older NAD's (like my 712, that age), resistors, opamps, little mkiv's?
First up, your NAD isn't "older". You obviously aren't into vintage gear. As for the headphone out, it will use resistors, and probably sound damn good too.
post #68 of 191
In probably THE classic NAD amplifier from the late 70's, the 3020, it was already just a single resistor with the speaker-signal.

The schematics can be found here
post #69 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drosera View Post
In probably THE classic NAD amplifier from the late 70's, the 3020, it was already just a single resistor with the speaker-signal.

The schematics can be found here
It's the same with my 3155
post #70 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by silverrain View Post
This happened to me -- absolute sonic nirvana, the first time I plugged my new PRO 750's into the SA8001 headphone jack, with a very good quality CD playing.
No kidding. Unbelievable sound quality -- totally amazed me.
I was just plugging them in to start the usual new-can burn-in.

I then tried several other good cans, with similar results, proving that good SQ CAN be had, even *before* hooking-up one of my dedicated headphone amps.

This is a CD player that I could happily use without a headphone amp, and not feel that I am missing hardly anything -- you gotta hear it to believe it.
Marantz says they put extra effort into the SA8001's headphone circuitry, and it really shows..
I sometimes wonder if an expectation psychology isn't at play in the evaluation of integrated HP jacks. Someone recently posted that they thought the HP jack on their 5001 CD player was inferior, but I just wonder if they'd have thought so in a blind test if told that they were actually listening to a well-reviewed dedicated amp. It's inevitable after spending a good deal of money on a dedicated amp to resist the idea that a CD player sounds as good or better, but so it often does. I still cannot hear that my Cute Beyond (which I like very much) sounds better than the HP jack on my Sony MDS 940 minidisc deck, or indeed my Sony CDP 211 CD player. (It certainly sounds better than a recent Yamaha receiver, so obviously my hearing isn't completely shot). The most likely explanation is that Sony and other manufacturers have been using the same amp design for yonks in their various players and it happens to be a good one. This is certainly possible with HP amps where only a few millivolts are involved, unlike a speaker amp where huge driving voltages and load tolerance are all important.

Quote:
Originally Posted by silverrain View Post
A relatively low-priced headphone amp would *most likely* sound worse, instead of better -- seen that happen many times before, with other quality players over the years, with very rare exceptions.
It takes a really decent amp to equal or surpass the SA8001 headphone jack SQ.
The best I've heard from a source player -- and I have some good stuff.
Just as an aside, what have Marantz said about the design of the HP amp? It's rare for maufacturers to comment on this aspect of their products.
post #71 of 191
Quote:
I sometimes wonder if an expectation psychology isn't at play in the evaluation of integrated HP jacks.
I don't wonder at all. I'm certain of it.

Quote:
Someone recently posted that they thought the HP jack on their 5001 CD player was inferior
Could be. Or it could be that they were listening with phones, like Senn HD580/600/650 with high impedance and a very uneven load, which reportedly require good voltage to deliver their best bass control and transient response.

Quote:
I still cannot hear that my Cute Beyond (which I like very much) sounds better than the HP jack on my Sony MDS 940 minidisc deck, or indeed my Sony CDP 211 CD player. (It certainly sounds better than a recent Yamaha receiver, so obviously my hearing isn't completely shot).
This could be the same issue. If you are using low impedance phones, they would probably sound better out of a quality op-amp based headphone amp, in or out of a source component, because the Yamaha will have a high impedance headphone output. Something like Senn 580/600/650s might actually sound better out of the Yamaha than it would directly from the CDP or minidisc deck.

And with all of that said, I think it is probably all stuff we would have to listen for, not dramatic superiority or suckage. And while some of this is based on correspondence with the actual manufacturers, some of it is also based on what I've read here, which is, at this point, suspect. We were so wrong about receivers and integrated amps that I now wonder what else we may be wrong about. FWIW, some other seemingly informed audiophiles on other boards have said that even the high impedance output with low impedance phones issue should only be an audible problem in extreme cases...

Tim
post #72 of 191
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post
First up, your NAD isn't "older". You obviously aren't into vintage gear. As for the headphone out, it will use resistors, and probably sound damn good too.
Well, euhm, they don't sell new do they now
post #73 of 191
No, but it's a young pup. Trust me. A 302 is "older". A 3020 is "old".
post #74 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by tfarney View Post
This could be the same issue. If you are using low impedance phones, they would probably sound better out of a quality op-amp based headphone amp, in or out of a source component, because the Yamaha will have a high impedance headphone output. Something like Senn 580/600/650s might actually sound better out of the Yamaha than it would directly from the CDP or minidisc deck.
Opposite. I use 650s. I think the Yamaha just wasn't much good. Hey, it happens, whatever the impedance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tfarney View Post
And with all of that said, I think it is probably all stuff we would have to listen for, not dramatic superiority or suckage.
Absolutely. All this, "Whatever you do, don't use a 300 ohm Senn with the Polybus 430 because the Polybus has a 120 ohm impedance and the bass will suck and you'll get response aberrations"....nah, don't buy it. Subtle at best, inaudible otherwise. As I've said before, look at the frequency response of your typical quality phone. We don't hear those huge peaks and dips, and just as well. Nor will we hear wee wiggles.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tfarney View Post
And while some of this is based on correspondence with the actual manufacturers, some of it is also based on what I've read here, which is, at this point, suspect. We were so wrong about receivers and integrated amps that I now wonder what else we may be wrong about.
Tim
Keep wondering. I think an open mind and access to a lot of receiver/integrated HP jacks could yield interesting results. The latter of course is difficult, and the former....even more difficult.
post #75 of 191
My brother has a 3020. Original owner, bought in the early 80s. Its collecting dust now because it sounds like mud. I remember when it use to sound like a dream. It seems the cheap old copper circuits are corroding and all the switches and pots make noise.
I tried salvaging it as a headphone amp once but it just doesn't sound like it use to. Only way it did sound good was driving headphones directly from the speaker outs but with allthe noise and pops it makes from the switches, I didn't want to take a chance blowing my headphones.
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