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Graham Slee's Solo SRG w/ PSU1 - Page 5

post #61 of 113
Right,

So the SRG has been sat happily on my desk playing mostly pink noise (with a few listening sessions thrown in!) since it arrived on thursday evening.

I have to say, I have never known an amp before to change so much over the first several hours (we had a power cut friday night), my old little dot used to sound different over the first hour or so whilst the tubes settled down, but as for solid state, interesting!

My first impressions are that the HD650's sound gorgeous with it, silky smooth, but not too warm, the instrument separation and general spacious feeling you get is amazing, definitely a cut above the little dot and the inbuilt beresford 7510 amp in this regard.

I have taken a few listens with the RS1i's hooked up, and am still unsure if I like what I am hearing or not... the 650's sound good with everything I play, but because the RS1i's are that fair bit brighter, they are a little more hit and miss! I am also noticing less of a difference between amps with these lower impedance cans.

I will keep listening to the SRG over this week, and report back with my feelings.
post #62 of 113
dp
post #63 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrarroyo View Post
I have had one on for over 2 months but have been way too lazy to start building it. I need to build that sucker!
Send it to me .

What does it involve? soldering or what skills required?
post #64 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by hughwi View Post
Right,

So the SRG has been sat happily on my desk playing mostly pink noise (with a few listening sessions thrown in!) since it arrived on thursday evening.

I have to say, I have never known an amp before to change so much over the first several hours (we had a power cut friday night), my old little dot used to sound different over the first hour or so whilst the tubes settled down, but as for solid state, interesting!

My first impressions are that the HD650's sound gorgeous with it, silky smooth, but not too warm, the instrument separation and general spacious feeling you get is amazing, definitely a cut above the little dot and the inbuilt beresford 7510 amp in this regard.

I have taken a few listens with the RS1i's hooked up, and am still unsure if I like what I am hearing or not... the 650's sound good with everything I play, but because the RS1i's are that fair bit brighter, they are a little more hit and miss! I am also noticing less of a difference between amps with these lower impedance cans.

I will keep listening to the SRG over this week, and report back with my feelings.
I too thought it was an excellent match for my HD600, and very good with RS-1 but the HD600 were in the lead.
post #65 of 113
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by oqvist View Post
Send it to me .

What does it involve? soldering or what skills required?
Depending on the kit you get everything or just the board w/ components to solder on it.



post #66 of 113
Wow even Graham Slee printed on the PCB Board! I didn't know a kit was sourceable. That should be cool for a DIY also have the choice to change parts like caps. I'm thinking of getting one. =)
post #67 of 113
Hmm, already thought you where not talking about the SRG kit, even if I hoped it was there already... have fun building that cute little Novo.
post #68 of 113
Don´t even have a soldering iron so should probably not go there then
post #69 of 113
Thread Starter 
The kit does require soldering skills, however it is a very well put together kit with even better instructions to follow. A couple of novices have built it w/ no problems. I need to start building it!
post #70 of 113

My thoughts on the Graham Slee Solo SRG w/PSU1

I am adding my thoughts to this review. Since Miguel and Larry have described the amp in great detail, I will skip right to the part about the Slee’s performance.

My previous experience with earlier Graham Slee headphone amps is that they were a little lean and bright sounding. And while I would not describe the Solo SRG as warm or lush, it was definitely smooth, and never harsh at all. It was, in fact, very pleasant to listen to, while still being very detailed and nuanced, as I felt the earlier Solo was. So this to me is a big improvement – the Solo SRG is definitely going to work with a wider variety of headphones.

I was able to use the Sennheiser HD800 with the Solo SRG during my audition, as well as my JVC DX1000, and my Beyer Trio of 600 ohm cans (DT770/880/990). I thought the Solo SRG drove them all pretty well. The Beyer DT series and the HD800 have, let’s just say, “lively” treble responses, and the Solo handled them all well, without editorializing them in any way. In fact, I really felt, with one exception, that the Solo SRG wasn’t editorializing anything. Treble was very clean, and very extended as well.

And the midrange on the Solo SRG is really nice. The mids were not overly ripe, or in any way lean. They were pretty much “just right”. I really enjoyed vocals, both male and female, via the Solo SRG. Johnny Cash’s vocals from “American IV: The Man Comes Around” were very nuanced, but there was no bloat to his voice. Holly Cole’s beautiful rendering of Cole Porter’s “Get Out of Town” was just terrific. The mids were very neutral, and also nicely transparent.

Soundstaging was quite good, although I have heard wider soundstages. But image specificity was very good, and so was image depth. I think tube amps provide, generally, more “body” to the soundstage than SS amps do, and I felt that way about the Solo. The Decware CSP-2 had a more overall palpable and believable soundstage than the Solo. But the Solo was better than the Audio-GD C2C in this regard (which was the only other SS amp I had on hand at the time of this review).

My one “beef” with the Solo SRG is something I have felt was true with prior Slee amps – and that is bass extension in weight. The bass that is presented is well defined and tight. However, it lacks a little on BOTH extension and weight. The extension issue is more noticeable than weight on some recordings – it depends – the problem is that the deep-bass roll-off can give the impression of a lack of weight if one is used to the deeper bass. Things like the bass pedals in the live version of “Where Will I Be” from the Emmylou Harris record “Spyboy” were down in level versus the rest of the recording than what I hear on the Decware, or the Audio GD C-2-C. It’s not drastic, but it is noticeable. This means that on some recordings, the overall sound can seem a little “light”, versus other amps. Again, not drastically, but noticeably when doing level-matched comparisons. This trait was more of a “problem” with headphones like the DT880 and HD800, whose response already leans slightly this direction. With the DT990 or the JVC DX100, it was much less of an issue. So careful system matching as always is the rule of the day.

So the Solo SRG, with the PSU1. Is a very nice SS amp, which is clean, smooth, and transparent, with just a little lack of deep bass extension and weight. If this sounds like it would be up your alley, it delivers a lot of sonic prowess for not too much money.
post #71 of 113
Does anyone here have info regarding weight of the SRG and PSU1 respectively? Can't find that info at the Graham Slee website.

May seem like no worry for desktop units, but I'm planning for a one solution home + home away from home computer audio setup, so needs to be manageable.
post #72 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by spahn_ranch View Post
Does anyone here have info regarding weight of the SRG and PSU1 respectively? Can't find that info at the Graham Slee website.

May seem like no worry for desktop units, but I'm planning for a one solution home + home away from home computer audio setup, so needs to be manageable.
Very light weight and easily transportable.
post #73 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skylab View Post
I am adding my thoughts to this review. Since Miguel and Larry have described the amp in great detail, I will skip right to the part about the Slee’s performance.

My previous experience with earlier Graham Slee headphone amps is that they were a little lean and bright sounding. And while I would not describe the Solo SRG as warm or lush, it was definitely smooth, and never harsh at all. It was, in fact, very pleasant to listen to, while still being very detailed and nuanced, as I felt the earlier Solo was. So this to me is a big improvement – the Solo SRG is definitely going to work with a wider variety of headphones.

I was able to use the Sennheiser HD800 with the Solo SRG during my audition, as well as my JVC DX1000, and my Beyer Trio of 600 ohm cans (DT770/880/990). I thought the Solo SRG drove them all pretty well. The Beyer DT series and the HD800 have, let’s just say, “lively” treble responses, and the Solo handled them all well, without editorializing them in any way. In fact, I really felt, with one exception, that the Solo SRG wasn’t editorializing anything. Treble was very clean, and very extended as well.

And the midrange on the Solo SRG is really nice. The mids were not overly ripe, or in any way lean. They were pretty much “just right”. I really enjoyed vocals, both male and female, via the Solo SRG. Johnny Cash’s vocals from “American IV: The Man Comes Around” were very nuanced, but there was no bloat to his voice. Holly Cole’s beautiful rendering of Cole Porter’s “Get Out of Town” was just terrific. The mids were very neutral, and also nicely transparent.

Soundstaging was quite good, although I have heard wider soundstages. But image specificity was very good, and so was image depth. I think tube amps provide, generally, more “body” to the soundstage than SS amps do, and I felt that way about the Solo. The Decware CSP-2 had a more overall palpable and believable soundstage than the Solo. But the Solo was better than the Audio-GD C2C in this regard (which was the only other SS amp I had on hand at the time of this review).

My one “beef” with the Solo SRG is something I have felt was true with prior Slee amps – and that is bass extension in weight. The bass that is presented is well defined and tight. However, it lacks a little on BOTH extension and weight. The extension issue is more noticeable than weight on some recordings – it depends – the problem is that the deep-bass roll-off can give the impression of a lack of weight if one is used to the deeper bass. Things like the bass pedals in the live version of “Where Will I Be” from the Emmylou Harris record “Spyboy” were down in level versus the rest of the recording than what I hear on the Decware, or the Audio GD C-2-C. It’s not drastic, but it is noticeable. This means that on some recordings, the overall sound can seem a little “light”, versus other amps. Again, not drastically, but noticeably when doing level-matched comparisons. This trait was more of a “problem” with headphones like the DT880 and HD800, whose response already leans slightly this direction. With the DT990 or the JVC DX100, it was much less of an issue. So careful system matching as always is the rule of the day.

So the Solo SRG, with the PSU1. Is a very nice SS amp, which is clean, smooth, and transparent, with just a little lack of deep bass extension and weight. If this sounds like it would be up your alley, it delivers a lot of sonic prowess for not too much money.
Nice write up although I have never found the Solo 2007 (the earliest one I have had) to be lean or bright and the SRG seems even warmer, although it has not fully burnt in yet so that could change.
But then I noticed that you are a tube lover so our respective tastes could have something to do with that
I find bass depth to be fine although I agree bass weight could occasionally be better but I like a controlled bass so its not a problem for me.

I am interested in getting a tube amp in the near future as an alternative, not a replacement, to the Solo and would be grateful for any comparisions with your DV337/Singlepower although the W6se is top of my list at the moment. Thanks
post #74 of 113
I definitely find the DV337 to have more body to the midrange than the SRG. The soundstage is also more holographic. It also has more bass weight, although the SRG has the slightly better bass definition.
post #75 of 113
Thanks Skylab for your quick response it makes me even more interested in a tube amp.
I have never heard one and curiosity is getting the better of me. What's always put me off is the fact that I listen to rock/metal and to me speed is very important for these genre's and I generally like a fast sound with excellent transient response. Because of this I have shied away from tubes incase I get the typical(!) tube sound which would not suit me. That is the reason the W6se is, at the moment, my preferred amp to buy based on what I have read on this site. Looking at your amp list you are definatly a tube expert so do you think I would be able to get a tube amp (circa $1000) to suit my needs. Thanks in advance for any advice.
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