Originally Posted by wower
oh, please please please for the record please eleborate on those differences.
I haven't heard the WES but I've talked to those that have, did design the thing and I know what effect the design will have on the sound output. The BHSE is fully DC coupled and with power to spare this means it has little impact on the sound and is relatively immune to the load it is presented with. The goal here is to eliminate any "sound" which the amp might have and to become truly neutral. Nothing really is truly neutral but the BH does leave a rather small imprint on what goes through it. To do this you need to marry what tubes do well and what transistors do well and build a hybrid amp. The very rare and nearly unobtanium Stax SRM-T2 is very similar to the BHSE though it uses a similar input stage as the old Stax SRX design (aka the cursed ES-1/ES-2 amps) so it has more tubes but with even more transistors. That is safe to call the most complex headphone amp ever made and it sounds simply sublime. These are amps for purists i.e. those that want to hear what's on the recording, be it good or bad.
The WES is more like a traditional tube amp and in some ways similar to what Stax were doing back in the 60's but on a much grander scale. Being AC coupled and no CCS to match the load presented it will no be as transparent as the BH (no capacitor is as good as a piece of wire) nor can it be as immune to the load presented by the transducer. That's not really a concern here since it also sounds more mellow and "musical" since it's sins are normally of omission rather then adding something which shouldn't be there. A properly built ES-1/ES-2 amp would also be in this category since that is a Stax design from 1968.
Now what I won't touch on is rather important part, the power supplies. They will influence the sound a great deal so for instance a simple supply for the BH will change its sound over the regulated supplies normally used. That isn't really a concern here even though there is no such thing as a too large a PSU.
The bottom line here though is we have two fine amps, built by people that know what they are doing, that suit different tastes. This is by no means the end of the road though. We are working on making a limited run of DIY T2 amps (these will never be commercially built though so you'll have to find one of the Stax built units if you want one) and Kevin has some very interesting solid state designs which can rival these other tube based amps. Now we just have to get Stax to modify the SR-007Mk2 to make it sound as good as the Mk1 but I can say that the SR-404 Limited Edition did far surpass my expectations so there is hope they will see the light.