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Icon Audio HP8/MP 3 - Page 3

post #31 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spakka View Post

Hi, I know you're still writing the review, but those who have this amp I'm considering getting it to use with my ah-w1000x and possible future HD800 or LCD-2r2. Would it be a good match for the latter headphones?
In terms of value - good/worth it/bad?
Thanks!

 

I can't comment on the former but I liked mine with the LCD2r2 and absolutely love it with the HD800, which I'm currently using. To put that in context I should add that I prefer the HD800 to the LCD  with other amps too, it wasn't really a reflection on that particular combination. I should add that I'm using the SE version which is upgraded from the standard specification. It's a fine amp and I really like it. 

post #32 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by Painterspal View Post

 

I can't comment on the former but I liked mine with the LCD2r2 and absolutely love it with the HD800, which I'm currently using. To put that in context I should add that I prefer the HD800 to the LCD  with other amps too, it wasn't really a reflection on that particular combination. I should add that I'm using the SE version which is upgraded from the standard specification. It's a fine amp and I really like it. 

 

 

I took the plunge a month or so ago, as one came up for £350 2nd hand. Got some nice new tubes etc. 

 

It's sounding great with my HD800 (arrived this morning so first impressions, pinch of salt, etc. etc.), maybe it's just me but I have no idea why they could be described as bass-light. 

 

Sounds lovely with my W1000X if sometimes a little bass heavy for my tastes (I don't like heavy bass), and actually made my K702s listenable by allowing them to express some bass rather than none as from my previous amp. 

 

 

It's also built so well I feel if I dropped it out the window all it'd do is dent the pavement. 

post #33 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spakka View Post

 

I have no idea why they could be described as bass-light. 

 

 

 

Spakka, where did you see the HP8/MP3 described as bass-light? Since my two cans for home use are some aging Ultrasone PRO-2500 and the Audio-Technica ATH-W1000X (the former being a bass-heavy phone, the latter having a frustrating upper bass hump), I have really wanted an amp that can tame the bass in both sets while leaving alone the beauty of, especially, the W1000X. So I'm going to be very sensitive on the issue of bass control.... I'd just like to see the comments describing the bass of the Icon so I can judge for myself the writer's perspective/matching gear/etc. and determine how much that applies to my case.

post #34 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by Painterspal View Post

 

I should add that I'm using the SE version which is upgraded from the standard specification. It's a fine amp and I really like it. 

 

I haven't seen any mention of an alternate version of the Icon.  Where did you find it?  How much was it?  What are the differences?

post #35 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScuderiaHeadFi View Post

 

Spakka, where did you see the HP8/MP3 described as bass-light? Since my two cans for home use are some aging Ultrasone PRO-2500 and the Audio-Technica ATH-W1000X (the former being a bass-heavy phone, the latter having a frustrating upper bass hump), I have really wanted an amp that can tame the bass in both sets while leaving alone the beauty of, especially, the W1000X. So I'm going to be very sensitive on the issue of bass control.... I'd just like to see the comments describing the bass of the Icon so I can judge for myself the writer's perspective/matching gear/etc. and determine how much that applies to my case.

Sorry I was referring to the HD800. I haven't heard many amps so I don't feel I can comment on the relative bass of the HP8. All I can say is that the bass is well extended and controlled on the HD800 with the HP8 MK2. I am very much not a fan of large amounts of bass; I'm very sensitive to it and get fatigued fast. It can indeed be a bit boomy, but only occasionally, with the W1000X, but hasn't been at all with the HD800.

My previous headamp had pretty extreme bass rolloff so I got used to that signature, but the HP8 is much, much more satisfying, controlled and natural. 

 

 

The SE edition is a special thing you can ask for from the factory, it's just upgraded tubes and caps. There isn't an official 'SE' version though.

post #36 of 250
That's right, the SE edition just has upgraded caps and tubes. I've no idea what the stock version sounds like but the SE version sounds terrific and the sound improved significantly over the first 100-200 hours. I've also done a bit of tube rolling, replacing the supplied gold pin JJ ecc83 with various nos options such as Tesla and Mullard. They have improved the sound still further and, with my hd800, I'm frequently astonished how good it now sounds. I agree with the other comments regarding bass from the hd800 with this amp - there's nothing anaemic about the sound. I'm now convinced that the HP8 mk2 is outperforming my Violectic v200 with virtually all the material I throw at it.
post #37 of 250

Ah, I misread the sentence!
Better than the Violectric?  That's a really exciting proposition, especially the SE version with improvements coming from further tube rolling...

post #38 of 250

My review of the HP8 is finally ready to read: see it HERE.

 

This is a stunning amp overall - as happy with current-hungry planars as it is with voltage-hungry high impedance dynamics. Very impressive and definitely a contender at its price. 

post #39 of 250

Excellent review. Helpful that you have such an array of headphones to test the amp with, very informative.

 

Thanks.

post #40 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by alvin sawdust View Post

Excellent review. Helpful that you have such an array of headphones to test the amp with, very informative.

 

Thanks.

 

 

Thanks for reading it - glad it was useful. 

post #41 of 250

Can the 6SN7 be swapped with 6SL7 tubes? I happened to have a nice collection of those..rolleyes.gif

post #42 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by zenpunk View Post

Can the 6SN7 be swapped with 6SL7 tubes? I happened to have a nice collection of those..rolleyes.gif

 

I'm guessing yes but I'd check with Icon to be sure. The 6SN7/6SL7 relationship is something like that of the 12AX7/12AU7. Some amp designs won't care at all and some will definitely object. 

 

If I recall correctly the 6SL7 will have higher gain so it might not be desirable. This amp doesn't need more gain. 

post #43 of 250

Another thanks for the review. As I'm in the UK this looks like something of a bargain for the price.

post #44 of 250
Yes, UK buyers have it particularly good with this one.

Btw if people enjoy the review feel free to comment on it (on the review itself rather than here). Those are always good as it makes it look like people actually read it and enjoy. Thanks for the support everyone!
post #45 of 250

Yes I agree with your review. 

 

I feel I got an awesome bargain as I got it 2nd hand for about £350, it's built in such a solid feeling way that if I dropped it out my window the pavement would be much worse off than the amp.

 

I agree with your thoughts on the W1000X pairing, I find the bass a bit too much when using them together, but the HD800 is excellent. 

 

 

I think the strong sales are because English hifi magazines have recently given it very good reviews - so I suppose more people here have heard of Icon. 

 

 

 

Hmm, I have realised I never tried anything other than high output impedance with my HD800s, I'll have to compare the L and M soon...

 

 

 

 

EDIT:

 

One criticism I have is that there  is quite noticeable tube hum with the Icon - definitely worst on the higher output impedences. It's perhaps something to avoid if you're v.sensitive to this, and use sensitive cans. 


Edited by Spakka - 3/8/13 at 4:18am
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