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Magic M Stage or Neco Soundlab MOSFET V2??

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

CORRECTION: IT'S MATRIX M-STAGE NOT MAGIC

Hi guys,

 

I'm struggling to decide which amp to get for my headphones. The Neco MOSFET receives lot of loves on rockghotto forum while the M-Stage is praised here. Has anyone have experience with both? Or is there any negative about these two that I should take into account when making my decision?

 

Here's a link to the MOSFET: http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=140407981757&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT#ht_2449wt_1167

 

Thanks in advance,

Newb. 


Edited by Noobiiee - 5/21/10 at 12:19pm
post #2 of 13

I have not heard the MOFSET but i can't really see any faults with the Matrix M-Stage considering the price from Coolfungadget on ebay..I can tell you that have good synergy with the HD650..

post #3 of 13

Running a Neco V1 with 650's and can highly recommend both the amp and Neco as a seller.

 

The v2 I am told by Neco is full class A output and just has the edge in terms of SQ over the V1 version.

 

His amps with the ad8620 option produce a powerful punchy sound that is very refined and balanced, erring to the warm and natural sounding. Top stuff.

 

Not sure about the Matrix one as i havent heard one.

post #4 of 13

I am looking at these amps as well. From the reviews I've read, it seems that M-Stage is more neutral while Neco Mosfet is more on the warm side. In the end, it might come down to the kind of sound you like and which headphones you are going to pair the amps with.

 

In terms of features, these amps are actually quite different. The Neco Mosfet is pretty small and relatively light so it's easy to carry around. It has an external power supply that comes with UK and Euro plugs, I read somewhere it's only 220V but it's fairly easy to fit a dual voltage one with various plug adaptors to get a truly transportable amp in case you want to bring it with you when you travel. On the other hand, the Matrix M-Stage power supply is set to 220V and it would be difficult to fit another one without major surgery. On the positive side, the M-Stage has two sets of inputs and one RCA output so it's more flexible in depending on your rig. The build quality and components used in the M-Stage are slightly better than in the Neco Mosfet IMHO.

 

Finally, from a price standpoint in the UK, the Neco Mosfet with upgraded opamps (highly recommended) will set you back around £150 (inc. shipping) while the Matrix M-Stage will be roughly £230 (inc. customs and VAT). Another important point is that Neco is located in the UK so if you ever need the amp to be repaired, that's a huge bonus.

 

Hope this helps with your decision. In the end, if I had to chose, I would go for the Matrix with Sennheisers and with the Mosfet V2 with AKGs (but that's just me).


Edited by Type35 - 5/22/10 at 7:56am
post #5 of 13

The Neco MOSFET is cheaper, but does it have variable gain control and a socketed opamp?

 

I'm looking at the M-Stage myself (and a few others) for my 702's.

 

The M-Stage is a clone of the Lehmann Black Cube Linear btw, which is supposed to be a great match with Senn's. And the easily adjusted gain control can help it match well with different cans, as well as the neutral SS.

post #6 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Type35 View Post

I am looking at these amps as well. From the reviews I've read, it seems that M-Stage is more neutral while Neco Mosfet is more on the warm side. In the end, it might come down to the kind of sound you like and which headphones you are going to pair the amps with.

 

In terms of features, these amps are actually quite different. The Neco Mosfet is pretty small and relatively light so it's easy to carry around. It has an external power supply that comes with UK and Euro plugs, I read somewhere it's only 220V but it's fairly easy to fit a dual voltage one with various plug adaptors to get a truly transportable amp in case you want to bring it with you when you travel. On the other hand, the Matrix M-Stage power supply is set to 220V and it would be difficult to fit another one without major surgery. On the positive side, the M-Stage has two sets of inputs and one RCA output so it's more flexible in depending on your rig. The build quality and components used in the M-Stage are slightly better than in the Neco Mosfet IMHO.

 

Finally, from a price standpoint in the UK, the Neco Mosfet with upgraded opamps (highly recommended) will set you back around £150 (inc. shipping) while the Matrix M-Stage will be roughly £230 (inc. customs and VAT). Another important point is that Neco is located in the UK so if you ever need the amp to be repaired, that's a huge bonus.

 

Hope this helps with your decision. In the end, if I had to chose, I would go for the Matrix with Sennheisers and with the Mosfet V2 with AKGs (but that's just me).


The Neco needs an 18v AC supply, so wherever you are in the world, if you can get a decent linear 18v psu then your'e up and running.

 

The matrix looks a very nice amplifier indeed, although with the price difference I don't suppose you can directly compare them - both great value for money though.

 

I wouldn't be so quick to state what phones to drive from the mosfet though, as I said it err's towards the warm sound, but the AD8620 is quite a neutral punchy sounding op amp in this amplifier design.

post #7 of 13

I have the Matrix M-Stage, which I can wholeheartedly recommend. It is an excellent amp that manages to sound wonderful with every system/headphone I've tried.

It's also very close in performance to my Audio-gd ROC running single ended.  

 

 

The Neco looks like a smart little amp.

Design wise it does share some similarities with the M-stage and BCL.

Both have an opamp based voltage amplifier section  and discrete Mosfets buffer running in class A.

The Neco is dual mono and offers quite a neat PSU design. Being made in UK is a plus, as stated above.

I don't know how it sounds but for 125 GBP you'd be getting a lot of amplifier for your money.

 

I'm willing to try one if I can get Neco to sell me a very basic unit (without that rough looking case, opamps and external PSU).

If that happens any time soon I'll be writing a few words on the matter.

 

 

 

 

post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 

Just ordered the MOSFET V2 from Neco. If it all comes down engineering skills at the end of the day, I don't think the Neco MOSFET V2 is anywhere but below the M-Stage from my experience of the Portable V2. In term of design, they both use discrete Class-A design but would the dual op amp design make a difference compared to the single design of the M-Stage? FWIR, the OPA2134 the M-Stage is using is meant to be warmer and have narrower soundstage compared to the AD8610 but op amp rolling is always an option. 

post #9 of 13

Great. Now we are waiting for your review of the Neco Mosfet V2

post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Type35 View Post

Great. Now we are waiting for your review of the Neco Mosfet V2


Ditto. 

 

Why is it when you are 99% decided on which amp to buy does a new contender appear. 

 

 

 

post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 

lol. I don't think any of these amps are inferior to each other. I haven't heard any problem about their performance. It's only that matter of whether you can be satisfied with one and stop being curious about the others. :) It is my curiousity that has been costing me so much money since I started my audiophile journey :(

post #12 of 13

Noobiee, hows the NECO any impresssions yet?

post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 

Just spend about an hour testing it. One word: Fantastic! It's a big jump in quality compared to the Portable V2. Instrument separation on the top end is much improved on my HD650, with a slightly (not day/night) more laid-back sounding. Some has said it adds more warmth to the sounds but I didn't pick that up in my HD650 (maybe when I tried a more neutral phones later like K701 or HD600)  I find the mids placed slightly backward on the Mosfet V2 compared to the built-in amp in the Aundinst but more pleasing too. Tried the both with my PL50 and there's absolutely no hiss audible while the hiss was present in my Portable V2 and iPhone built-in amp when I listen through IEMs. 

I'd defo recommend the Audinst > Neco Mosfet V2 to anyone with any cans <300ohms.

One thing to note to UK buyers, VAT + handling fees for the Audinst will be around 35 quids so the total cost will be around 150GB. 

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