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Headamp Blue Hawaii Special Edition - Page 169

post #2521 of 6024

Hi Dave

 

It was good to meet you and IanG at the meet (I didn't realise you'd brought along a third person as well).

 

Anyway, after you left, there was an impromptu shootout between my BHSE and the dealer's Liquid Lightning, using both 009 and 007. I don't think meets are the right place to make conclusive judgments, and I didn't attend in order to have a competition, but that's how it turned out and the results were interesting...which I'll publish hopefully later today in the BHSE/LL/Woo thread, as it seems more appropriate there popcorn.gif.

 

Back to the BHSE itself, the above same dealer wasn't impressed with me using SE connections for either the BHSE or LL, and lent me a powered external phase splitter thingy with SE inputs and balanced outputs. So we plugged this in between the CDP (SE only) and the BHSE and the sound did seem to improve a bit. By no means conclusive, but it did make me think it was worthy of further investigation one day. The thingy was an Alice Matchpack IHF PRO, costs around £150 and I think is aimed for Pro use.

 

If that apparent improvement was indeed real, then it means the external thingy is doing a better job than the BHSE's internal splitter circuit, which the dealer put down to the difference between of a dedicated Pro design versus a (possible) off-the-shelf chip solution in the BHSE. Thoughts anyone?

 

Sorry Mr Dealer, you did have a name, but there were so many new names that I've forgotten most of them already.


Edited by TheAttorney - 9/16/12 at 2:45am
post #2522 of 6024

Hi Richard

 

It was also great to meet you. Andy the third person is a friend of Ian's who I meet for the first time going to that meeting. All in all I really enjoyed myself but if we ever go again [ assuming there'll be another meeting ] I won't be taking any of my equipment with me, it was good to let others have a listen but it was always at the back of my mind something might happen to it. Those that did have a listen not only were impressed with the SQ, but they also said how well the BHSE's build quality looked. Regarding the LL + BHSE, when Ian brought his LL through to my place just over two months ago, I wanted him to hear it via the K-01. In no way were we doing a comparison but we did find at that time SQ wise, that they sounded on par with each other. The one and only time when we did listen to the BHSE + LL together, the BHSE hadn't been on power for long. Since then I've learnt the BHSE when it's been on power for over an hour, is it sounds like a different and improved amp. I'm sure owners of their LL are very happy with it, just like I'm very happy with my BHSE. Some are wanting to prove whether one sounds better than the other, but that isn't important to me, IMO though, no one should ever do a comparison on build quality.


Edited by David1961 - 9/16/12 at 6:07am
post #2523 of 6024

Looking forward to hearing that even if it is meet impressions.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheAttorney View Post

Hi Dave

 

It was good to meet you and IanG at the meet (I didn't realise you'd brought along a third person as well).

 

Anyway, after you left, there was an impromptu shootout between my BHSE and the dealer's Liquid Lightning, using both 009 and 007. I don't think meets are the right place to make conclusive judgments, and I didn't attend in order to have a competition, but that's how it turned out and the results were interesting...which I'll publish hopefully later today in the BHSE/LL/Woo thread, as it seems more appropriate there popcorn.gif.

 

Just a heads up on warm up. The LL should be on for about an hour first as well. I noticed this (so did Alex and the guys from AVGuide) when I was demoing the LL for the first time. 

 

I will admit that the BHSE is nicer looking and more substantial feeling. ;)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by David1961 View Post

Hi Richard

 

It was also great to meet you. Andy the third person is a friend of Ian's who I meet for the first time going to that meeting. All in all I really enjoyed myself but if we ever go again [ assuming there'll be another meeting ] I won't be taking any of my equipment with me, it was good to let others have a listen but it was always at the back of my mind something might happen to it. Those that did have a listen not only were impressed with the SQ, but they also said how well the BHSE's build quality looked. Regarding the LL + BHSE, when Ian brought his LL through to my place just over two months ago, I wanted him to hear it via the K-01. In no way were we doing a comparison but we did find at that time SQ wise, that they sounded on par with each other. The one and only time when we did listen to the BHSE + LL together, the BHSE hadn't been on power for long. Since then I've learnt the BHSE when it's been on power for over an hour, is it sounds like a different and improved amp. I'm sure owners of their LL are very happy with it, just like I'm very happy with my BHSE. Some are wanting to prove whether one sounds better than the other, but that isn't important to me, IMO though, no one should ever do a comparison on build quality.

post #2524 of 6024
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheAttorney View Post

 

If that apparent improvement was indeed real, then it means the external thingy is doing a better job than the BHSE's internal splitter circuit, which the dealer put down to the difference between of a dedicated Pro design versus a (possible) off-the-shelf chip solution in the BHSE. Thoughts anyone?

 

Sorry Mr Dealer, you did have a name, but there were so many new names that I've forgotten most of them already.

 

The BHSE is an all-discrete design, it does not contain an "off-the-shelf chip solution"

HeadAmp Audio Electronics - home of the Pico and Gilmore amps.  Now with Audeze, Fostex, HiFiMAN, Sennheiser, and STAX.
Find us at www.HeadAmp.com

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post #2525 of 6024

The dealer clearly doesn't know how most stat amps work with regard to accepting a single-ended input.  More likely than "dedicated Pro design," is a "dedicated Pro salesman" ;) 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheAttorney View Post

If that apparent improvement was indeed real, then it means the external thingy is doing a better job than the BHSE's internal splitter circuit, which the dealer put down to the difference between of a dedicated Pro design versus a (possible) off-the-shelf chip solution in the BHSE. Thoughts anyone?

post #2526 of 6024
post #2527 of 6024

Most stat amps have super high gain (500x or 54dB) and this allows them to do the phase splitting automatically by grounding the - input.  No other components necessary which goes to show how little that dealer guy knows.  While the process isn't 100% linear it should be far better than what ever transformers were in that add-on box.  Some amps do require an external phase splitter and the A-10 and WES are good examples of that as they simply don't have enough stable gain to pull it off.  Then we have amps like the Aristaeus, HEV90 and GES which were designed to have only have a single ended input so the first stage both provides gain and acts as a phase splitter.  All these amps would work just as well with a differential input stage which would accept both inputs easily. 

post #2528 of 6024

Today I listened to Coldplay's Greatest Hits which I received yesterday. Using my 009 + BHSE + K-01 combo, I have to say it's one of the best recorded CD's I've heard, however there are only a few songs of theirs I like. I did what I've started doing and that's to leave things on an hour before I listened to anything. It made me realise that it's a pity I didn't have the nerve to take my K-01 with me to that head-fi meeting, because if I had I'm sure anyone that had a listen would have been gobsmacked. I'm thinking of getting either the HE-6 or TH900 to use with the GS-X I've on order, but I still think they'll only be second best to the BHSE + 009.

 

 

P.S. One guy at the meeting brought his own 007's and after plugging it into my BHSE decided to listen to it aswell as my 009's. At first he preferred his 007's then after about five minutes he changed his mind and liked the 009's better. What this proves to me is that time is needed to get used to anything rather a matter of minutes.


Edited by David1961 - 9/17/12 at 12:11pm
post #2529 of 6024

Anyone try tube rolling their BHSE with any new production tubes?  I've been thinking of trying the Gold Lion KT77s.  Any other ones to look for?  Some people seem to like the Winged SEDs quite a bit.

post #2530 of 6024
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elysian View Post

Anyone try tube rolling their BHSE with any new production tubes?  I've been thinking of trying the Gold Lion KT77s.  Any other ones to look for?  Some people seem to like the Winged SEDs quite a bit.

I'm currently rolling in a quad of NOS RFT's (perfectly matched). I like them better than the stock Mullards. Very smooth, with more warmth overall. It seems like they add a little bit of extra body to the music giving it a bit more depth. Still kind of early though, as I probably only have about 50 hours on them. My next purchase will be the SED Winged 'C'. I'd be more then happy if they came close to the RFT, but I have a feeling they won't.

post #2531 of 6024

Very cool.  I'm hoping to find a set of tubes that gives better clarity than the stock Mullards.  I've also been considering the Psvane 6CA7-T/EL34 but am having trouble finding impressions and am a bit hesitant about spending that much on tubes without more reviews available.  The Psvane engineers and GF separated from Shuguang awhile ago, so I'm wondering what implications that's had on quality and performance.

 

http://psvanetube.com/wordpress/store/products/6ca7-t-quad/

post #2532 of 6024

It's interesting to go back to the begginning of thread because the same discussions occur, albeit those feel more substantial. Example, elephas posts: post #54

post #2533 of 6024

Thank you for reposting elephas link :)  That's a post a lot of us go back to when discussing tube rolling for the BHSE.

 

Unfortunately, the Mullards he endorses have gotten very rare these last 12mo and the prices have jumped substantially, which is why I'm specifying new production tubes in my post.   I know I'm not alone in a preference for new production over NOS unless there's a really good price proposition (such as with 6SL7 and 6SN7s).  In addition, given the lively BHSE vs LL discussion, I'd like to get some fresh voices talking about their tube experiences, since listening impressions can vary quite a bit.  Before, a lot of us couldn't input much, since we didn't have our BHSEs or only had meet impressions to go off of.

 

It would be good to do a fresh tube review with the BHSEs with more economical tubes, particularly now that a lot of us have received the amps and another set is in assembly.


Edited by Elysian - 9/18/12 at 4:12pm
post #2534 of 6024

I paid $200 for the last quad set he had. NIB, NOS, and tested them myself before purchasing. I kind of lucked out as the guy who sold them to me only lives 10 miles away (he let me bring my own tube tester too ). I don't think I'm going spend big money for any of the older Mullards, unless it was a very good deal (XF1...XF4). To be honest, I'm perfectly happy with the stock tubes as well. The difference is noticeable, but it's not worth losing sleep over trying to hunt down something better.

post #2535 of 6024
The tube rolling for an amplifier of "wire with gain" design topology is a little bit conflictual in my mind. In particular, isn't there a possibility that the tube is used in such a way as to ensure it is most linear and impairs very little of its own signature? Being as knowledgeable as a clam or an oyster when it comes to electronics, this may make little sense but, for instance, doesn't local feedback negate the typical tube flavor?

Regardless, production or NOS, it seems impressions were divided earlier in the thread in regards to the impact or lack there of tube rolling. Intuitively, I would believe tubes are not going to turn the BHSE into a LL or electra type of euphonic sound (again warning, I don't know what I am talking about here, haven't had the luxury to hear any of these) and I am myself unable to make a move forward. On one hand, the design and sense of perfection in Justin's work make me want to pull the trigger (esp. I still own an omega 2). On the other hand, I know from experience that the wire with gain philosophy does not always turn into enjoyable experience for me. Contrary to some others, I don't fully blame the 009 for this, and I much appreciate the extra resolution it brings relative to the omega 2 when "inadequately amped". If the BHSE takes the omega 2 to 009 level, all would be good and I could just sell the 009 after comparison, but I can't wrap my head around this with blind faith...
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