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Corrupt me with tubes! (RS1i and D7000)

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
So I've been delaying this, but I think it might be time to succumb to the world of tubes I've become resigned to the fact that one amp/headphone isn't going to be perfect for all situations and I recently returned my Beyerdynamic T1 and got a pair of Denon D7000 and Grado RS1i instead. So I figure a SS amp and a tube amp with two pairs of headphones gives me four sound flavors to choose from on a whim.

Predicament is that I don't really want to spend the money, but if it's worth it, I'm willing to stretch to like $1,000 out the door (shipping, extra tubes, etc. whatever I need). $400-500 is much more palatable though. From my reading it seems like the cheaper OTL tube amps aren't going to work well for me as both headphones are low impedance, some some of the most popular ones here such as the various Little Dots, Darkvoices, etc. are out of the picture. Ones I've been looking at:

Under $300:
HiFiMan EF2A
Little Dot i+
Millet Starving Student

Under $500
HiFiMan EF5
Millet MiniMax

Under $1,000
Woo Audio 6

Specifics:
Will be fed via unbalanced line out from Grace Design m902. A pre-amp out would be nice to feed powered speakers, but not mandatory. Two inputs would be nice, but not mandatory either. I don't have a ton of desk space, so no super wide amps (maybe like 30cm max). Music is pretty much everything except country, but mostly rock and rap/hip-hop. One guess which headphone gets which duty :-P

I'm guessing most will probably recommend the WA6, but I want to see if maybe one of the hybrids will do nearly as good a job with the low impedance cans. I'm in the US and would prefer ones I could get domestically in case of issues and the need to return/service. Thoughts are welcome as well as other options to consider. Thanks!
post #2 of 5
Well the Grace M902 is supposed to be an awesome amp, but the DAC in it is apparently pretty 'meh'. I would probably use the M902 as the amp for the D7000 and buy a MAD Ear+ HD. Everyone on Head-fi knows it is an awesome, awesome, AWESOME amp for the RS1i, if not the best tube amp for it I would go that route and see if you prefer SS (M902) or tubes with the D7000. You may only need the MAD Ear+ HD and not another SS amp after all
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by stang View Post
Well the Grace M902 is supposed to be an awesome amp, but the DAC in it is apparently pretty 'meh'. I would probably use the M902 as the amp for the D7000 and buy a MAD Ear+ HD. Everyone on Head-fi knows it is an awesome, awesome, AWESOME amp for the RS1i, if not the best tube amp for it I would go that route and see if you prefer SS (M902) or tubes with the D7000. You may only need the MAD Ear+ HD and not another SS amp after all
I meant using the amp of the m902 for the SS :-) Thanks for the suggestion.
post #4 of 5
Yeah, as I was typing that message I was thinking that you meant that, but wasn't 100% sure. I was going to edit it but I am too lazy to do so The M902 as the SS amp and MAD Ear+ HD as the tube amp will make you very, very happy. VERY good SS amp and a VERY good tube amp I personally would loooove to have that combo. I own the MAD Ear+ HD, but the price tag of the M902 is way out of my league
post #5 of 5
I'm very happy with the WA6 and both of my Grados (which are very different). I don't care for the WA6 with the K701, however. Way too bland for my taste. Just throwing the 701 in as an example of another low-impedance phone. IME, some amps/phones just work well together and some truly don't.
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