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Crack;Bottlehead OTL - Page 179

post #2671 of 5478
Quote:
Originally Posted by amcananey View Post

Yes, you can just plug in any compatible tube. If you find yourself using any tube other than a 12AU7, ECC82 or 6SN7 (via adapter) regularly as your input tube, you might want to consider some mods in order to optimize the amp for those tube types (e.g., 12BH7 or E80CC), but frankly I don't think it is worth it unless you are sure you will never want to use a 12AU7, ECC82 or 6SN7 again.

Some people claim there are synergies between certain tube combinations. There may well be, but the added benefit is small and trying to find reliable information on tubes, let alone two specific tubes in combination, is almost impossible. The bottom line is that almost every tube I've tried has sounded good in my Crack.

I'll let other comment on the DAC, as I'm not a big believer in differences between DACs once you get above the $100 price point and provided you account for differences in output signal strength.

As for the HD650s....just....don't. The HD600s are better. I've owned three pairs of HD650s. Each time I keep telling myself they can't be as bad as I remember, and each time I confirm that, yes, they are as bad as I remember. I know the HD650s are newer, have a higher number and cost more, but they are still worse than the HD580s/HD600s. Save your cash for something else. If you want an upgrade from the HD600s, save your pennies and buy a pair of HD800s when you can. They are absolutely amazing, especially out of a Crack. Skip the HD650s and HD700s.

Regards,
Adam



You sound like the type of guide or guru who can really be within my sonic preference.  I've got absolutely no love for the 650s.  I had them. Went crazy modding them believing I could make them better.  YOU ARE CORRECT.  "they are as bad as I remember. I know the HD650s are newer, have a higher number and cost more, but they are still worse than the HD580s/HD600s. Save your cash for something else. If you want an upgrade from the HD600s, save your pennies and buy a pair of HD800s when you can. They are absolutely amazing, especially out of a Crack. Skip the HD650s and HD700s"

 

2 months ago, I got my brand new HD800.  I am currently using the WA6-SE to drive it.  Since it is an upgrade to the Burson that I had, I've got nothing better to compare it against.  However, I still feel that the HD800s have more to give given proper amplification.  I have NOT soldered anything in my entire life, would you recommend I get the Bottlehead Crack?  BTW, I also own a Beyerdynamic T1.   At the moment, I am loving the WA6-SE (w/ Sophia rectifier and RCA 6GL7) with the T1 more than its pairing with the 800s.

post #2672 of 5478

sp3llv3xit, I did a lot of research before ordering the Crack.  I consistently came across stories where people with no soldering experience or electronics background were able to successfully build the Crack.  I wouldn't let that be a reason to stop you from getting it.  I don't know if they still do it, but there used to be a way to order the crack pre-built.  I'd recommend doing it yourself.  It'll be fun, give you confidence in modding your Crack (if you ever feel that's necessary), and it's something to be proud of.

 

Adam seems really passionate about the HD 800 + Crack combo.  I wish he'd do a nationwide tour, so I could try his mods and his higher-end headphones.

 

Edit:  please note that if you don't have experience soldering, then you likely don't have the equipment.  That'll be an additional, but small, investment -- just a heads up.


Edited by whatthedac - 9/16/13 at 4:54pm
post #2673 of 5478
Quote:
Originally Posted by whatthedac View Post
 

sp3llv3xit, I did a lot of research before ordering the Crack.  I consistently came across stories where people with no soldering experience or electronics background were able to successfully build the Crack.  I wouldn't let that be a reason to stop you from getting it.  I don't know if they still do it, but there used to be a way to order the crack pre-built.  I'd recommend doing it yourself.  It'll be fun, give you confidence in modding your Crack (if you ever feel that's necessary), and it's something to be proud of.

 

Adam seems really passionate about the HD 800 + Crack combo.  I wish he'd do a nationwide tour, so I could try his mods and his higher-end headphones.

 

Edit:  please note that if you don't have experience soldering, then you likely don't have the equipment.  That'll be an additional, but small, investment -- just a heads up.


Thank you for the pros-cons discourse.  

I shall certainly read more about the Bottlehead before ordering.  It came late to me that DIY amps though not as visually pleasing as mass produced ones, can more often sound better.  I am using a DIY portable to drive my full-sized as well as my IEMs (after my rounds with the ALO line of amps).

post #2674 of 5478
I've never owned a WA6-SE, but I owned a WA6 w/ Princess Sophia and a WA22, with every upgrade tube Woo offers. As soon as I had built my Crack and spent enough time with it to be sure what I was hearing was real, I sold both of them, and have never regretted it for a second. The Crack was so much better than the WA22 with the HD800s that it was embarrassing.

But don't get me wrong, Woo build quality and aesthetics are awesome.

FYI, Bottlehead just recently reactivated it's assembly service, only it isn't a Bottlehead service: they have an outside guy they know and trust, and you work directly with him. Crack assembly is $250. See here.here Speedball is an extra $90.

Build it yourself. First, it isn't that hard. Second, you save money. Third, you will be equipped to make your own modifications and upgrades. (Which you will want to do, if for no other reason than its fun.) Fourth, Bottlehead customer support (through their forums) is excellent and very, very fast. Fifth, it will give you the skills and confidence to undertake other DIY projects, which is fun and will save you even more money. Sixth, you can't really break anything meaningful in the Crack. Worst comes to worst, you overheat a part and have to order a replacement, which will probably cost you $1-2.

Go for it. The Crack is AWESOME with the HD800s.

Regards,
Adam
post #2675 of 5478

^^^ Yep. Crack is the perfect gateway DIY drug :cool: I have six DIY projects in the works now thanks to it...included a back loaded horn project!


Edited by brunk - 9/16/13 at 7:25pm
post #2676 of 5478
Quote:
Originally Posted by amcananey View Post

I've never owned a WA6-SE, but I owned a WA6 w/ Princess Sophia and a WA22, with every upgrade tube Woo offers. As soon as I had built my Crack and spent enough time with it to be sure what I was hearing was real, I sold both of them, and have never regretted it for a second. The Crack was so much better than the WA22 with the HD800s that it was embarrassing.

But don't get me wrong, Woo build quality and aesthetics are awesome.

FYI, Bottlehead just recently reactivated it's assembly service, only it isn't a Bottlehead service: they have an outside guy they know and trust, and you work directly with him. Crack assembly is $250. See here.here Speedball is an extra $90.

Build it yourself. First, it isn't that hard. Second, you save money. Third, you will be equipped to make your own modifications and upgrades. (Which you will want to do, if for no other reason than its fun.) Fourth, Bottlehead customer support (through their forums) is excellent and very, very fast. Fifth, it will give you the skills and confidence to undertake other DIY projects, which is fun and will save you even more money. Sixth, you can't really break anything meaningful in the Crack. Worst comes to worst, you overheat a part and have to order a replacement, which will probably cost you $1-2.

Go for it. The Crack is AWESOME with the HD800s.

Regards,
Adam


Thanks!

post #2677 of 5478

+1 the HD600+Crack. Just love it, the HD580/600 are definitely more neutral than the 650's. The 650's are nice too but I find they shine better on solid state amps and not tubes. But hey that's just me.

post #2678 of 5478

Ditto on the comments about building the Crack even as a novice. I'm currently assisting a novice solderer to build the SEX kit which is harder than the Crack, but we're doing fine. Also, have to 2nd the point that the worst you can do is overheat a part (like I did with one of the little LEDs), but it's a low cost lesson and nothing to be worried about.

post #2679 of 5478
Doc B, do we get an email when product has shipped? I've been refreshing the delivery status page madly everyday and last update was almost 2 weeks ago. On top of that the crack status was shipped up to the day before my order :/
post #2680 of 5478
The kits are packed and shipped in batches. The hold up between batches is usually due to the need to wait for parts to arrive. If you ordered as part of a promotional deal, then there were likely a large number of orders, and it can take a while for the team to work through those.

Best regards,
Adam
post #2681 of 5478
Quote:
Originally Posted by sjeffrey View Post

Doc B, do we get an email when product has shipped? I've been refreshing the delivery status page madly everyday and last update was almost 2 weeks ago. On top of that the crack status was shipped up to the day before my order :/

You do, with the tracking number.

post #2682 of 5478

The next batch of Crack kits is scheduled to ship at the end of this week.

post #2683 of 5478

It may take awhile to ship, however once out of Bottlehead's hands, I got mine very swiftly, 3 or 4 days.

post #2684 of 5478

woo hoo! I ordered one, can't wait for it to come in! Picked up a Valab stepped attenuator to go with it too. Gonna be pairing it with my HD650. I also have a Schiit Lyr + Uberfrost, but my HE-500 seems to be hogging it all the time right now =P

post #2685 of 5478

Thought I should chime in here.  I ordered the Crack kit + Speedball few weeks back, and completed the initial kit about a week ago.  

Only problem I have right now with the amp is that it sounds so good that when I have free time, I can't leave these alone which leaves me no time to install the Speedball :(  I will probably upgrade them this upcoming weekend.

 

I'm selling my SS amplifier counter-part (M^3), because for the Senn 650s, the Crack is that much better.  Other headphones I own and have owned are pale in comparison compared to this combo.  The Crack is probably an end of the road for me as far as Amplifiers go.  I might go for a upgrades in my source and possibly upgrade to the 800s in the future... but for as far as amps go, especially for high impedance phones, this is it.  I don't know how much more I would have to spend to get better sound than this and I probably wouldn't be able to justify its costs.

 

I'd also like to add on in saying that the Bottlehead Crack is not too difficult of a project.  My DIY experience was limited to cables and such, and mine worked flawlessly the first time I turned it on.  My only advice, is to take your time on it, and to triple check your work.  The whole build took two weekends for me to complete.  It could get a little frustrating, but it's also very fun and rewarding at the same time.  I've had to post on their forum once due to an issue (I lost the fuse), but responses were expeditious and helpful.

 

I couldn't recommend this amp more to any Senn owners out there.


Edited by younglee200 - 9/19/13 at 4:10am
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