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Which amp for getting better lows from HD800s without loosing detail? - Page 2

post #16 of 40
Pick an amp with a lot of tube options, then roll the tube to your liking. WA22 is factory built user switchable 110V and 220V.
post #17 of 40
Thread Starter 
Thank you for all the valuable comments. @pedalhead: Would you consider the WA22 as the better amp than the BUDA with DPS or just another amp suitable for a slightly different taste? Do both of them have pros over the other one or is WA22 simply better in all areas? WA22 with tube upgrades are basically the same price as BUDA with DPS and I am curious.

Will a WA22 sound better with HD800s balanced compared to Zana Deux SE? There are really a lot to choose from in that price range, I wish I had the chance to listen to them .
post #18 of 40
A seriously powerful amp like a Roc or Phoenix from Audiogd will fill the bill, they really do need an aftermarket cable of some sort though. Silver plated copper tends to make the HD800 sound tinny at the super thin gauge of the stock cable. A B22 I have heard is the best SS amp out there, but it does have its drawbacks. They're about $2300 for a 2 box build from YBM.

I really would only run the HD800s balanced, they sound dull when run SE, they need the additional power.
post #19 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by artears View Post
Thank you for all the valuable comments. @pedalhead: Would you consider the WA22 as the better amp than the BUDA with DPS or just another amp suitable for a slightly different taste? Do both of them have pros over the other one or is WA22 simply better in all areas? WA22 with tube upgrades are basically the same price as BUDA with DPS and I am curious.

Will a WA22 sound better with HD800s balanced compared to Zana Deux SE? There are really a lot to choose from in that price range, I wish I had the chance to listen to them .
Well, I found the BUDA/DPS fine, but unremarkable. I had mine for a week, along with a UDAC (I also used my CI Audio VDA2 DAC for comparison). When listening to the BUDA I felt something was missing, I'd even go so far as to say it was a bit dry. It was competent enough, but I just didn't find it particularly involving. The lows via the HD800s were still weak, and to be honest it just didn't feel like a high-end piece of kit, build-quality wise, although I appreciate the latter is very much a matter of taste. I returned the whole BUDA/UDAC/DPS shebang under the Headroom returns policy (via international shipping...so not an option I took lightly).

The WA22 on the other hand was a different proposition. As soon as I fired it up I could hear the improvement in bass depth. I didn't have the two amps at the same time, so other thoughts are less certain, but my feeling is that the Woo has a better soundstage, with better separation & detail. With the BUDA I felt I would be looking to upgrade again in the future, with the WA22, not so much. I would say though, I listened to a b22 at the recent UK meet, and it was fantastic. If I didn't have the Woo, I'd be looking to place an order for a b22 right now.

Bear in mind of course, tastes are different. I do enjoy a detailed, but warm sound, which is what I think I'm finally getting from the WA22/HD800 combo. All the best with your search. There's some great stuff out there at this price point!
post #20 of 40
Thread Starter 
pedalhead, thank you very much for the detailed response. I also enjoy a detailed, but warmish sound, I am a fan of HD600s and HD650s and this should tell something. The detail on HD800s made me want them, but I was also missing the lows, so probably we are on a similar page. I really appreciate your comments.

I know I said no to a B22, but I am not limiting that as of now, sounds like everyone loves them. HD800s seem to be preferred when driven in balanced configuration, so a balanced amp it is... Now what, if I can find a nice B22 with the option of some international power supply, I might go for it. I really don't know anything about how to convert one from US to European, so I hope the person I will be dealing with will be helpful in that regard. Another option will be WA22 then.

Let's see how things turn out. I will appreciate if anyone will come and chime in with additional comments. Thanks again...
post #21 of 40
Artears, if you happen to find a Beta22 with a Sigma22 psu, a lot of builds are made with dual primaries (110v and 220v), if not you'd have to replace the transformer/s.
Either way it would be easy to convert over, any competant DIYer could tackle this.
post #22 of 40
If you want bass, soundstage, and detail with WA22, use 6CG7/6FQ7 type tubes with adapter instead 6SN7 type. Those tubes do bass like soild state amp with touch of tubiness.
post #23 of 40
Thread Starter 
Thanks again for the comments.

It has been some though time to decide, especially considering I did not listen to the amps mentioned or cannot do it sometime soon. I eliminated BUDA (size is a plus with this), considering that the cost of it with DPS is higher than WA22 and there is some preference on WA22 compared to BUDA when paired with HD800s. Tube-rolling will increase the price of WA22 to a level more than BUDA + DPS though. Anyways, BUDA is eliminated...

B22 seems to be the best option sonically, so if I find a nice one in the same price range, I will opt for this, although this one is much bigger than the others. Still, it is a very powerful amp and I felt HD800s required some power to show what they are capable of.

@johnwmclean: I am guessing you are quite satisfied with the lows of HD800s when paired with your B22. What do you think?
post #24 of 40
Bear in mind the WA22 ain't no midget either
post #25 of 40
W22 get me hook for it's ability to roll tubes as switching to different headphones. I always could find sweet spot to my tast.
post #26 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by artears View Post
I do not want a B22 due to the following reasons:
1. I need an amp which can be used with different voltages, so an international power supply is a bonus.
2. I would love to have a warranty on the product
3. There are different quality B22 builds and the price can increase a lot with a decent one, I am not a DIYer myself. I would like to not try and find a better builder and pay much more.
4. Size and weight is an issue to some extent. I would prefer one big chassis to two. I might be moving out of the country some time next year.
1) Most transformers used have dual primaries, switching between 110V and 220V can be as simple as a small switch on the back of the power supply, or an internal jumper.
2) Get it built by a reputable builder that will offer warranty.
3) No, not really. Most parts are pretty standard, the only real "differences" are with the volume control, and considerably less important things (in terms of performance) like wiring, connectors, casework.
4) That would have to be between you and the builder. Dual chassis physically isolates the power supply making it a lot less likely to pick up noise, etc.
post #27 of 40
Thread Starter 
Thanks again for the info. What do you guys think about the tube upgrades on the web page of WA22? They are expensive, but are they worth? Is it better to look for other tubes on some auction site? Which ones will be the best for my purposes?

@FallenAngel: B22 will be dual chassis for the reasons you mentioned. I was thinking the differences in the cost coming from the casework and labor mostly. Right now I am considering one, let's wait and see.
post #28 of 40
PLEASE DO NOT upgrade tubes at Woo's website, ONLY if you want the sound of Sophia mesh. The Chinese made CV181 is big wast of money( well I am made in China myself).

I spend a few week to test WA22, and post a review, and what tubes I have rolled so far, but nobody listened I guess.
post #29 of 40
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Seamaster View Post
PLEASE DO NOT upgrade tubes at Woo's website, ONLY if you want the sound of Sophia mesh. The Chinese made CV181 is big wast of money( well I am made in China myself).

I spend a few week to test WA22, and post a review, and what tubes I have rolled so far, but nobody listened I guess.
I simply did not see your review I will listen to your recommendations in case I can locate it and decide to get a WA22
post #30 of 40
I would recommend the Woo WA22 or Eddie Current ZDT, both of which I spent time with using HD800 and think they are wonderful with those amps, SE or balanced.

You could easily re-terminate the stock HD800 cable with a 4-pin XLR and turn the remnant cable with 1/4" plug into a single ended adapter (like I had done). The WA22 seems to benefit more from using the 4-pin instead of 1/4" (and sounds best with balanced input as well), while the ZDT seems to sound just about as good via 1/4" as via 4-pin XLR and takes only single ended inputs. They are also on a similar level of performance in timbre/tone, frequency response, soundstage, power, and other areas (with the right tubes).
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