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Woo Audio WA5-LE Custom Build - For sale, see Post #64  

post #1 of 66
Thread Starter 
Hello all my music and headphone friends.
As we all love music, it is normaly our intension to have a wonderful time while we listen to it and forget all the things arround us.
This feeling, to relax and dive into the music, for me it´s a real big part of lifequality. I think many of you will share this.
At spring this year, i searched a real good Headphone-Amp for my new Grado GS 1000. After days of reading in this forum,
i decided to order a WA6 maxed with all upgrades from Woo Audio. The sounding as well as the build quality was absolute perfect for the money.
It makes so much fun, that i decided to go one step further and try to get the ultimat Headphone Amp.
My searching ended at the WA5-LE, also from Woo Audio, because from my point of view it has the best technical basic layout.

Now it was time for me to think about the the posibillities to upgrade Jack Woo´s basic WA-5 LE.
First i decide to get his premium parts upgrade that integrate the best sounding electronic parts that you can buy such as Black Gates,
V-Cap and Jenson capacitors, Kiwame & Mills resistors. Tell it German perfectionism, but i thought there were still a few points to optimise.

First i would like to change the standard RCA-Sockets to WBT-0210 Cu nextgen.
The next point were the Tube-Sockets. Here i decide to switch to Yamamoto´s teflon gold types, that are mechanical the best on the planet.
The last and most critical part was the attenuator. Because of the high gain design of the WA-5 LE, Jack couldn´t integrate a step-attenuator
to get a fine volume adjustment. So there was only one part in my mind to build in.
The giant Alps RK-50, also used in the Accuphase C-290V Preamp.
Now you are thinking, witch Tubes will this crazy German High-End Freak choose. To make it short, no NOS!
I would like to have Tubes with a real mash design for the 300B and 5U4G.
I could compare this real mash design in my previous WA-6. Absolute outstanding. If you would read my short review, klick HERE.
There is only one company, who has the technical knowhow to do this, Emission Labs.
Greetings to Jac van de Walle of JAC Music, who is a real nice guy and had a great reputation in the community.
The 6SN7 Tubes goes to Electro Harmonix 6SN7-EH-GB, also one of the best from current production.

So with all my wishes in mind i ask Jack Woo, if he could do this modifications for me.
After a few days of calculation and brainstorming because of the Alps monster, he will be happy to build this Custom Amp.


And now, here it is....






Here the WBT´s:





And the Alps Giant with the Yamamoto Tube Sockets:





Now a complete shot of the PSU...





... and of the AMP-Section:






Now i have about 75 hours of burn-in and all i could say is that this Amp makes me wet eyes!
I never heard such a autential playback with absolute perfect 3D liveness.
The burn-in go on...





post #2 of 66
Well I am impressed. I like the socket choice and the attenuator looks very interesting, and expensive. You should have had it mounted outside the case. :^)

I look forward to more listening impressions.

Why not have had the speaker terminal option to drive the horns?
post #3 of 66
All I can say is WOW. The best of luck with your new Woo.
post #4 of 66


Excellent choices!
post #5 of 66
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamato8 View Post
Well I am impressed. I like the socket choice and the attenuator looks very interesting, and expensive. You should have had it mounted outside the case. :^)

I look forward to more listening impressions.

Why not have had the speaker terminal option to drive the horns?
Hello John,

at the moment i drive the Avantgarde Acoustic DUO Omega with my 5-Channel AMP-V from audionet. It works very well! But in the near future i´ll be thinking of a Tube-Amp for the horns, like a Yamamoto 09S, the Ladyday Signature 91 monos or the audionote monos. Perhaps Jack would build me some special hyper quality monos!? We will see...

Some more listening impressions will follow!

Best,
Oliver
post #6 of 66
If it sounds as well as it looks it seems that you won't have anything to complain whatsoever.
post #7 of 66
Sure looks ace!
The RK-50 sure looks massive, and well built.
post #8 of 66
Drool
post #9 of 66
The RK50 has some kind of finger mark on it..
post #10 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by edisonwu View Post
The RK50 has some kind of finger mark on it..
Time to get out the metal polish. LOL
post #11 of 66
wow, oliver, you've really jumped into the deep end of the pool.
congrats, i hope you find maximum enjoyment from the unit.

one variable i'd consider upgrading is the 6SN7 pair you have. the
EH is adequate but the NOS types are vastly superior in SQ...
the sylvania, tungsol, raytheon and national unions are very good
choices. i don't think there's a better alternative for the 300b and
274b than the EML's, unless you're thinking of the western electrics,
but those will cost $1K+ each... and i'm not sure how much better
they will sound compared to the EML's.

looking forward to your impressions in the near future after a
long good burn-in.
post #12 of 66
Looks like it could be one of the best headphone amps ever. Time to grab some Western Electric
post #13 of 66
Jack and company really take pride in their build quality. Simply stunning workmanship.
post #14 of 66
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by takezo View Post
wow, oliver, you've really jumped into the deep end of the pool.
congrats, i hope you find maximum enjoyment from the unit.

one variable i'd consider upgrading is the 6SN7 pair you have. the
EH is adequate but the NOS types are vastly superior in SQ...
the sylvania, tungsol, raytheon and national unions are very good
choices. i don't think there's a better alternative for the 300b and
274b than the EML's, unless you're thinking of the western electrics,
but those will cost $1K+ each... and i'm not sure how much better
they will sound compared to the EML's.

looking forward to your impressions in the near future after a
long good burn-in.
Hi takezo,

i´ve got a pair russian 1578/6N8S from the Ukraine. Unique development for nuclear stations and military planes. They never was on free sale.
At the moment they are on the amp to burn-in, too. I am looking forward to compare them to the EH 6SN7.
post #15 of 66
wow!

nice build.
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