I guess I'll be the one to start this thread on the SPL Phonitor model 2730. (Including Auditor model 2910.) From discussions on this amp, I think quite a few of us own or are planning to own it. Please share your serial number, your setup, what you're learning about it, questions & answers, and anything else you feel like.
Serial number: 93002**
Setup: computer > S/PDIF > DL3 (stock) > Silver Serpent II XLR balanced > Phonitor > HD800
I'm learning that USB isn't very good, but it may be because of the interconnect, which is an el-cheapo. I'll need to get a Kimber USB cable from HeadRoom.
This is only my third day with it, but I've already cleared my desk of the rack full of small footprint amps/DACs. I'll still be using my other stuff, but for now, this is it. I'm totally impressed.
[photos added 8.1.09]
(Moved here from permalink #106 on 28 Oct. 2009)
01. crypt: SN In the 8[series]
Setup: iRIVER iHP-140 w/ Rockbox <Optical> Cambridge Azure 840C <XLR> SPL Phonitor ATH-W5000/ER-4S
Mostly playing FLAC; 840C up-samples to 24bit/384, dither on; Phonitor sets to 75 deg, 4 cross feed, centre -1.2.
02. ical: 93002** (very close to yours feifan) [SOLD]
Setup: Oyaide R1 > Clearer Audio Copper-line Alpha > CSE RK-100 > Acrolink 6N-P4030 > Cambridge Azur 740C > Van Den Hul Orchid w/Cardas RCA-XLR > Oyaide Tunami GPX-R > SPL Phonitor > Ultrasone Edition 8 / Sennheiser HD800 / Grado PS1000
My usual setting based on different recordng:
Crossfeed} 2/3/4, Speaker Angle} 55/75, Centre} Off/-1.4/-1.2
I do off the Cros/Spk at times for some live rock concert to maintain the noisy and wide atmosphere.
03. kidult: 93002** (one digit different from yours feifan)
Setup: Oyaide R1 > Blacksand Violet Z1 > Cambridge Azur 740C > Valgrind Audio w/Neutrik RCA-XLR adapter > Oyaide Tunami GPX-R > SPL Phonitor > Ultrasone Edition 9
I still toying with setting, usually the below, depends on recording and preference,
C-2, S-55, CT- -1.2
C-4, S-30, CT- -1.2
04. feifan: #93002**
Setup: computer > S/PDIF > DL3 (stock) > Silver Serpent II XLR balanced > Phonitor > HD800
05. EugeneK: Auditor
Home: PC >> Coaxial S/Pdif >> Lavry DA10 >> SPL Auditor >> HD800 with APS V3 / AKG K340
06. Dinan: #93002**
Settings: CF=3, Angle=30*, Center= -0.3
System: Electrocompaniet ECD1A DAC/MacBook Pro or MBL 1621/1611, TARA Labs Vector Balanced interconnects and Prism Reference AC cords.
Phones: Grado GS1000 for now.
07. woodcans: Phonitor
pc>Berkeley>Phonitor>HD800 rig. I have about 150 hours on it and so far find it incredibly detailed w/ a very natural soundstage. I really like the speaker angle/crossfeed effect . . .
08. John_H88: #83001xx
09. SteveM324: Phonitor
Rega > Saturn Cardas Neutral Reference > Phonitor > HD800, K340
Improved dynamics and a warmer and more full body sound. Now I'm surprised how well the Phonitor drives my K340.
10. argentum: Auditor
Auditor is great sounding amp too. I use this adapter: Neutrik - Audio - Circular Adapters - NA2MPMF
11. alcyst: Phonitor
Setup is; Wadia 170 - EMU 0404USB - Phonitor. Headphones are HD800s and ATH-W5000. And its all pretty wonderful.
I havn't spent time with the crossfeed.
12. suikodenii: Phonitor
Stock PS Audio DL3 balanced into the Phonitor and with my 300 Ohm HD800 I have usually set the Phonitor to -40 dB (~8'clock). I have my AG701 in the office unfortunately but when I had them at home I don't think I went beyond 9 o'clock in the above combination. Now people hear different but 1 o'clock sounds really high to me with the DL3 connected via balanced - as the DL3 outputs a really high level that on some CDs even lets the input LED on the Phonitor flash (on which SPL told me by the way not to worry as the input stage of the Phonitor would not be overloaded easily anyway). So actually sometimes I switch the 20 dB switch in order to have a bit more dial.
13. AmanGeorge: Auditor
Straight out of the box, the Auditor is extremely transparent, count me impressed at how detailed and uncolored the signal is. The only thing that has surprised me is that the amp is not quite as high gain as I was hoping/expecting - my normal listening levels are between 12 or 1 o'clock on it with my AKG K701. The challenge will be to see how it does with the HE-5, hopefully sometime soon...
14. MikeLa: Auditor
15. Sceptre: Phonitor
This one doesn't have a serial number. It came from Germany and apparently is one of the first three pre production units. Metal 'handles', flashing sig lights etc. Everything about the amp is as expected except for a slight mains hum. I shall play with earth loops over the weekend. Noticeable even with the inputs disconnected. Any better thoughts? This amp really tames the Ed9 and couples well with JH13s too. A birthday present for myself and a real performer. The c/f circuitry will obviously make some purists wince, but the effect and pleasure it brings is magnificent. I'm currently enjoying settings of cf 3, 55 degrees, -0.6 centre. Can this amp melt welding rods too?
Update 5.18.10: iRiver H140 to Sonosax SX DA-2 DAC using balanced out to Phonitor.
16. MarkyMark: Auditor, S/N is 9101044
It's primarily linked to a Benchmark DAC1 via LAT IC-300 Signature XLR interconnects. Btw, I have also used the Cardas RCA to XLR adapters with unbalanced interconnects and find those work excellently. The Auditor sounds best driving the HD800's. It's just "OK" with the K701's (sorry Acix ). I actually prefer to listen to the K701's from a Heed Canamp in my home office as they have nice synergy. I don't listen much to my Markl D5000's nowadays but I found the bass to be a bit overpowering from the Auditor, albeit very well controlled. The Sugden Headmaster is a better match ime - it drives low impedance loads well and is a bit bass-light. Cheers
17. omigawsh_lollercoaster: Phonitor
When I listened SE to both, I listened to Phonitor sometimes and wondered why I even had another amp, but I still liked both. Now I have balanced HP cables for tube listening and it's way better than SE but I still LOVE the Phonitor even on SE.
18. Markj: Phonitor
I had hum with Edition9 on my Phonitor also. Spl service check it and said it is design for 600Ohm. With T1 is totaly quiet, with Edition8 it is same as E9 with PRO900 is little better. I even have Furman ballanced power and it does not help. Since then I found that lots of headphone amps are noisy with low OHM headphones. I am looking for best cheap amp for Edition8.
19. tohenk2: SPL Phonitor nr. 9300339
20. CaféNoir: SPL Auditor
I had bought a SPL Auditor which presented some noise, whether the inputs were connected or not. It was not a hum, though, but rather a buzz, which was noticeable at both low volume and high volume, bur strangely desappeared with the volume knob set at around 3 o'clock. It was hardly audible through the hd-650, but very noticeable with lower impedance phones (say, 50ohms). I contacted someone that had the same problem. It turned out it was the same unit (he returned it to Thomann, they resold it, and I bought it back!). He told me that now his new unit is dead quiet. I sent back mine, and I am waiting for a new one, hoping it will be quiet too. I think the assumption we can make is there might be some defective units presenting this buzzing issue. If you have the same symptoms as I described, you probably have a flawed amp. I will tell you more as soon as I receive my new unit.
21. abyrvalg: Phonitor + Edition 8
22. AppleheadMay: Phonitor 2730B with SN 9310032
Looks like a beauty to me and with all the switches a real toy for boys! Since it hasn't been burned in yet I won't talk about how it sounds. Anyway I have only heard it for half an hour.
[Added later:] The effect of the crossfeed settings is really subtle, don't expect anything like what you can accomplish with an equalizer. That's actually a good thing, you can't ruin the sound with it. But I haven't tinkered with it long enough to say more and there is quite a lot of more useful info in this thread and on the forum about the controls.
23. .Sup: Auditor
Onkyo ND-S1 → CA DacMagic → SPL Auditor/LD MK IV SE → balanced KRK RP10s/5
24. oqvist: Auditor 91010114
It certainly is huuge... At least 3x a Heed Canamp which also have internal power. headphones see sig plus T1 and soon LCD-2.
25. vvanrij: Phonitor Serial = 8300138
I still love the phonitor, after I got it I stopped upgrading, finally found what I was looking for. My SPL Phonitor + AKG K1000 are still a dream come true, and will probably stay with me for the rest of my life.
I love the fact that combined with the k1000 I really really forget I'm listening to headphones after about 10mins. My settings on it are: Crossfeed 3, Speaker Angle 40, Center Level -0,9
26. St3ve: Phonitor (2730B) is SN 9310032
My source is a Lavry DA11 and my cans are Senn HD800s. Oh, and I tend to set my volume at somewhere between -24 and -19 depending on how loud the music is mastered. I absolutely love it. It really does make my HD800's shine, and the crossfeed system is fantastic. I have only had it just under a week or so, but I have been totally floored by the sound - everything sounds 'just right' to my ears. The crossfeed settings I am using are CF:4, SA: 75 and CL -1.2, and the imaging is superb.
27. Lord Mike: Phonitor SN:9310028
Mac Mini > DAC202--Furutech FP601/602/FA-220 XLR > SPL Phonitor/Burson OpAmp > HD25
Had the Phonitor for a year now, but now with the Burson OpAmp transplant, it's really worth writing about. The headphone out from the DAc202 is very good in its own right, but the 'Burnitor' takes the music to another league. Awaiting a pair of LCD-2s...
28. metalsonata: Phonitor SN 11.2731.00176 (Model 2730b)
I do suspect that my DAC (HeadRoom Mico DAC) is bottle-necking it somewhat--I wasn't honestly planning on getting a Phonitor, but a deal came up that I couldn't refuse, and I had the cash for it, so I went for it. I'll be upgrading the DAC sometime down the road a ways. Initial impressions are still very positive though--especially the sound-stage and the bass control/detail retrieval.
29. Zombie_X: SPL Auditor
Man oh man it's really good! Beats my Roc to a pulp and my WA3+ as well. The sound is so smooth and effortless. Really a nice sounding amp.
30. Arctia: Phonitor
Initial thought with HD800: Imaging is absolutely amazing. Holy grail of monitoring, perhaps? I also played around with the crossfeed, but couldn't find a good configuration with HD800. I feel that HD800 is a brilliant imaging headphone on its own, any attempt to alter the imaging will simply ruin the sound. This is where I found the quality of the crossfeed to be outstanding. Even though I couldn't find a good crossfeed setting (will try more tonight), having crossfeed on did not ruin imaging like all my previous attempts with various crossfeed DSPs. The crossfeed simply works in the background without you realizing.
31. MuppetFace: Phonitor
I use the Phonitor with the W5000, and there is a humming as you describe, but it's faint enough to my ears to where it doesn't bother too much, and I'm usually pretty sensitive (read: obsessive) about background noise. I agree that it's a really great combo... surprisingly so.
32. slwiser: "AppleheadMay: Phonitor 2730B with SN 9310032"
Computer FIles -> Squeezebox Touch -> Lavry DA10 -> SPL Phonitor
I am powering my HD-800 with it. I have to say it has to be the best amp headphone combination I have owned.
33. Acix: Phonitor
The transparency level of the Phonitor is the best so far! My first session was 6-7 hours with no ear fatigue...the Phonitor is definitely a new definition for studio Solid Stage hps amp.
I find interesting they use almost the same specs of the Auditor and the Phonitor ...and yet the Phonitor use a nine SUPRA OP amps that made and developed by SPL. The same tehnology use in the SPL MMC 1 @ 8K mastering console, and the SPL PQ 2050 mastering edition EQ @ 15K.
34. daniel_hokkaido: Auditor
35. Jamiee: Phonitor
36. TWIFOSP: Phonitor
37. Timmyw: Phonitor
38. madbull: Phonitor --My Phonitor has arrived and is making the LCD-2 really sing. I don't even miss my Orpheus with that combo!! Makes me wanna upgrade to the LCD-3. I'm listening to some Haydn symphonies through Phonitor and HD800 and everything is great, imaging is next to perfection with the Xfeed on. It really feels like I'm the theater, sitting at third row. Really amazing.
39. rxs0: Phonitor
40. Parula: Phonitor
41. dukeskd: Phonitor - the crossfeed really makes the music more realistic in so many ways. I also love to listen to acoustic albums, Jimmy Page - David Coverdale, etc.
42. teddytejero - Ordered an Auditor and M1 DAC today [11.28.12]!
43. kawee: Phonitor - I tried several different amp but really like how it sounds. First time, I tried Phonitor and I really feel that sounds out from Phonitor is what I am looking for. Everything is very clear to me. It is very nice to see this thread and looking forward to understanding how to make use of the crossfeed and Center function.
Edited by feifan - 12/3/12 at 6:09pm