Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › First listening impressions/reviews of Q1 2009 Purity Audio Kicas and Caliente Group buy
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

First listening impressions/reviews of Q1 2009 Purity Audio Kicas and Caliente Group buy - Page 9

post #121 of 131
nice.....
post #122 of 131
I'm using my caliente w/a Valab 2009 dac and hd600's and really enjoy the sound. I'm kinda of a noob, only have a Ibasso Viper to compare it to and this setup is clearly better, not really a fair comparison. So I bought a pico dac so I can compare the NOS valab to the up sampling pico. Will give impressions when it arrives, but so far i'm very happy.
post #123 of 131
Keeping this thread alive, i rediscovered my 580's today plugged into my Caliente. Nice and thick sounding and not as muffled as i remember them when i first got my 650's. The Caliente works perfectly with the 580's.
post #124 of 131

When You Say...

Quote:
Originally Posted by powerslave View Post
Keeping this thread alive, i rediscovered my 580's today plugged into my Caliente. Nice and thick sounding and not as muffled as i remember them when i first got my 650's. The Caliente works perfectly with the 580's.
When you say... "thick"... do you mean "weighty" with body and impact?

Does the sound still have lots of clarity, and fine detail and resolution?

Or... does the "thick" sound obscure the very fine detail (e.g. shimmer/splash of cymbals, squeak of rosin on the bow, etc.)?
post #125 of 131
Absolutely thick as in weighty with body and impact. For me the 650's have always been more detailed but always felt the 580's had more presence but more veiled so i hardly used them for awhile. I plugged them into the caliente and it sounded terrific so i think I'm going to spend more time listening to them. Regarding your comment on fine detail, i use my stax setup for that. Usually my 580's and 650's are used to enjoy music and not for much critical listening.
post #126 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by powerslave View Post
Regarding your comment on fine detail, i use my stax setup for that. Usually my 580's and 650's are used to enjoy music and not for much critical listening.
I couldn't have said it better myself. Peter is a huge fan of the 650's and when I compared them a/b against my GS1000's, I found the GS1k's to be significantly more transparent and detailed than the 650's. That said, the bass problem at higher volumes and a very close performance by my modded D5000's caused me to sell them and upgrade my source instead - worth every penny
post #127 of 131

Damn...

Damn... the Caliente keeps calling...
post #128 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gradofan2 View Post
Damn... the Caliente keeps calling...
get 'em while they're hot! LOL
post #129 of 131
Has anyone here from the UK bought one of these amps direct from Oriel? After reading all the reviews (and many, many reviews of various other amps in my price range) I decided that I'd go for one with some HD 650s. The price of the Caliente + shipping and insurance to the UK comes to $515CAD which is fine, but I was wondering if anyone had been stung by custom/duty charges?

I used an online duty & VAT calculator and there's a chance I could be charged an extra £90 ($170CAD) by customs, which is kind of crazy and obviously makes a very good value amp into the Graham Slee price range.
post #130 of 131
I was hoping to post this review much sooner, but just didn't have the time. I was able to directly compare the Caliente with the Shanling PH-100 and CI Audio VHP-2. All amps had at least 300 hours and my K-701 had at least 500 hours. I used the VHP-2 as the main amp for most of my comparison as it's passthrough allowed me to quickly switched the K-701 from it to the other amps without having to change inputs. Most critical listening was done at about 1/3 volume level. The VPH-2 was set to low gain for all testing.

I was actually surprised by the differences in size and weight. The VHP-2 was the smallest and lightest but it didn't seem to impact it's performances. The PH100 was very heavy at 5 lbs.

I first looked at the noise coming from the amps. Both the VHP-2 and Caliente had zero hiss/hum at max. volume while the PH100 started to introduce hiss/hum at volome level 8 out of 12 on the dial. I then took out my trusted SPL meter and placed it directly inside one of the suspended headphone cups. I wanted to see how different the maximum volume was between the amps. I made sure that the headphone and meter did not move when switching between amps. I then played a 1khz test tone from a Test CD I had. Here were the results. (remember that this can only be used to compare between amps. The actual volume when placed on your ear would be louder.

VHP-2 96.5db
Caliente 98.0db
PH100 103.5db

The subjective testing was more difficult. The most obvious difference between the amps was the additional bass coming from the PH100. It was very full and deep. The VHP-2 and Caliente sounded very similar with the Caliente having slightly more bass impact. For most recordings the PH100 didn't loose any of the detail that the K701 can give you. I did notice from the "Little Drummer Boy" on the Josh Groban Christmas CD, that the roll of the drums near the beginning of song were more detailed with the Calient and VHP-2. The PH100 seems to smear every so slightly the drum beats. There were some other instances where the PH100 had slightly less control in the bass. The Caliente in comparison had slightly more bass than the VHP-2 without any loss in bass control or overall detail.

The comparison just reaffirmed to me how good these amps are. I would have been very satisfied with either of them with my K-701. When I did some in-store headphone comparisons last year I noticed much greater differences than with these amps. Where as with the amps I had to struggle many times to hear a difference.

I ended up keeping the Caliente due to the overall sound quality as well as I believe better matching with other headphones (not yet purchased).
post #131 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by iGig View Post

Allright, I know the serious audiophiles disregard my opinions because I'm overly enthusiastic, to balance this post I will say something negative now:
This amp sounds so good I want to turn it up and up and up, and that's not good for my hearing.
I find this to be the case too. I think this results from the lack of treble extension in the HD650s. This amp sounds amazing on HD650s when you crank it past 12 oclock because your ears start perceiving increased treble at that point. I've been trying to figure out a way to remedy this...EQ i suppose. I have a pair of hd600s that ive used with the caliente and those dont cause me to turn the volume up. They actually make me want to turn the amp down because of ear fatigue from too much treble.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphone Amps (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › First listening impressions/reviews of Q1 2009 Purity Audio Kicas and Caliente Group buy