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Amp recommendations for Audeze LCD-2 - Page 493

post #7381 of 7748

Here's an update on the results so far on the "Head Fi's Favourite Amp for the LCD 2" poll. These threads are for finding out the most popular amps within the Head Fi community for the LCD 2. Within the $200-$1000 price range we've had 42 votes so far and some clear leaders have emerged:

 

- Schiit Lyr (18 votes)

- Schiit Mjolnir (14 votes)

- Violectric V200 (7 votes)

 

after these 3 amps the remaining have received 4 or less votes. For the full results or to vote here's the link for the thread:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/716576/head-fis-favourite-amp-for-the-audeze-lcd-2-200-1000-poll

 

Within the $1000-$2000 category there have been 23 votes so far. No clear leaders have emerged:

 

- Decware Taboo MKIII (7 votes)

- Bryston BHA-1 and Burson Conductor (Both with 5 votes each)

- Beta 22 (4 votes)

 

The rest have 3 votes or below. For the full results or to vote here's the link for this thread:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/716577/head-fis-favourite-amp-for-the-audeze-lcd-2-1000-2000-poll


Edited by PTom - 5/8/14 at 7:36am
post #7382 of 7748

Interesting that the lyr has more votes than the mjolnir.  Honestly I think that you need to spend hundreds on tubes before it even touches the mjolnir but maybe that is just me.  Price wise the Lyr is definately better value, especially since you don't have to go balanced.  

post #7383 of 7748
^ With a 42 vote sample the Mjolnir and Lyr are statistically indistinguishable. Lyr and Mjolnir are only separated by 10% whereas the margin of error approaches twice that (very roughly speaking - this model is complicated by each 'voter' being able to vote for more than one choice).

So, the sample has the Lyr with more votes, but among the population of headfiers who have heard both the truth could be the other way. Or not!

Taking the result as it stands though, I speculate the Lyr having more votes reflects the big splash it made at the time and that a lot of people own one. It was revolutionary and caught the imagination (deservedly). As a hybrid it appealed to die-hard toob and even curious SS people. Plus, it rode the ortho wave.

Speculating further I wouldn't be surprised if the very successful Mjolnir has nevertheless sold less units, in part because plans for the Ragnarok were already announced by then.

The other poll is even more uncertain. It's meaningless but I'm personally pleased the Taboo III has a good showing. I'm a Taboo mk II owner so didn't vote for the III, but FWIW I've heard the latter is slightly better than the II.
post #7384 of 7748

I'd guess that people are generally voting for the amp they own.  I had a Lyr when I bought the LCD-2 and added a Mjolnir later. I spent many hours comparing the Lyr and Mjolnir out of the Gungnir with my LCD-2. The Mjolnir blows away the Lyr in terms of quality. The LCD-2 sounds good out of the Lyr, and you can tweak it with tubes, but it's never going to match the transparency and tightness of the Mjolnir. You could easily spend more than the $300 difference between the two on tubes for the Lyr, but still be a mile away on quality.  The two amps have different signatures and I can imagine a few people might like the warmth of the Lyr, but LCD-2 is already a warm headphone and you have to trade detail, transparency, and soundstage to get the extra warmth from the Lyr. The Mjolnir has better synergy with the LCD-2 than the $2800 GS-X mk2.


Edited by Barry S - 5/8/14 at 7:42pm
post #7385 of 7748

This thread is potentially useful but something about it bugs me. These are separate questions yet the answers are mixed.

 

(1) Is it about which amps can properly drive the LCD-2 headphones? Properly means the sound levels the listener will actually use, are within the amp's normal continuous power, voltage, current, impedance, distortion ratings. In short, was the amp designed to drive a load like the LCD-2?

 

(2) Is it which amps have a sonic signature that the listener believes compliment the LCD-2 headphones? "sonic signature" simply means distortion. All amps have distortion though distortion comes in many forms. Some is more or less audible, or more or less euphonic, depending on the listener.

post #7386 of 7748
^ Do you mean this thread or PTom's polls? Good questions either way!

I think this thread is no different than any other...people come with different standards and expectations, and searching for different things. The threads end up catering to all tastes, and don't often focus particularly well on any one question. IMHE of course...
post #7387 of 7748

Been listening to my brand new LCD-2 on my Schiit Asgard 2 and I can't turn this thing up past noon or 1 o'clock without melting my brain, and I'm a death metalhead with sub-par hearing. I can't believe this thing needs more power, but my K550's definitely sound much better with excess power behind them. I can't believe how much I love the LCD-2 now, and I can't wait to hear them out of an amp with a higher power rating. Will a 2-4 W amp really make them sound that much better than the near 1 W with Asgard 2?

post #7388 of 7748
Quote:
Originally Posted by sludgeogre View Post
 

Been listening to my brand new LCD-2 on my Schiit Asgard 2 and I can't turn this thing up past noon or 1 o'clock without melting my brain, and I'm a death metalhead with sub-par hearing. I can't believe this thing needs more power, but my K550's definitely sound much better with excess power behind them. I can't believe how much I love the LCD-2 now, and I can't wait to hear them out of an amp with a higher power rating. Will a 2-4 W amp really make them sound that much better than the near 1 W with Asgard 2?

I believe the Lyr was designed for the LCD2, I may be mistaken. From my experience it drives them excellently though. @ 50 ohms the Lyr outputs 4W compared to the 1W of the Asgard. It may not seem like a lot since Audeze recommends 1-4W for the LCD2 but currently you are driving them at the minimum optimization. 

 

I've heard the LCD2 through Mjolnir as well and It may be an option for you if you do not like the idea of using tubes and have plenty of desk space you need to use up :jecklinsmile: . If you are considering tube rolling the Lyr, you will quickly be spending just as much as the Mjolnir even counting the balanced cables you will have to buy for it. 

 

I would also look at Woo Audio. When I was making this decision a while back most of the comments I received recommended the WA7 over anything Schiit. I probably pulled the plug too early. 

 

Schiit does offer a 15 day satisfaction return policy. You can always just buy one, sample it, compare it, and if you notice no difference, return it. As said many times on this forum, everyone's ears are different. Good luck. 


Edited by PinkLed - 5/8/14 at 8:14pm
post #7389 of 7748

I realize I'm at the bottom end, I'm just surprised at how great they sound. The latest version is more efficient so that must help as well. I'm not a huge fan of tube sound and I don't like the prospect of rolling to get good sound. I only kept my Vali for a month. I'm also not going to spend a ton of money on balanced equipment when I'm in a room with no electrical noise in it and cable runs of 6 inches.

 

I have a McIntosh MC2105 coming next month from my Dad and I can't wait to hear what they sound like with it.

 

The WA7 only puts out 1 W at 32 Ohms, so at 70 its a lot less, so its waaaay below optimum power. For that kind of price, no thanks.


Edited by sludgeogre - 5/8/14 at 9:34pm
post #7390 of 7748
Quote:
Originally Posted by sludgeogre View Post
 

The WA7 only puts out 1 W at 32 Ohms, so at 70 its a lot less, so its waaaay below optimum power. For that kind of price, no thanks.

So first of all the lcd2's are 50ohms... secondly it won't be that below "optimum" power (the reason it is in quotes is because you don't need an amp with 1W and that is shown by the fact that some amps with less than 1W sound better than some with more than 1W.) . Also the reason that the WA7 is that expensive is because it also has a DAC portion.  Thirdly and lastly, just because the output power of the amp is low doesn't mean that it is bad in anyway. 

 

With that being said I would not pair the LCD2's with the WA7 either.  :beerchug: 

post #7391 of 7748

The recent updated LCD-2's with the Fazor tech are now at 70 ohms, though more sensitive I believe. Doesn't really change anything, just thought I'd share the info so nobody gets confused. The ALO Pan Am is very popular, and doesn't provide near 1 W either.

post #7392 of 7748
Quote:
Originally Posted by sludgeogre View Post
 

I realize I'm at the bottom end, I'm just surprised at how great they sound. The latest version is more efficient so that must help as well. I'm not a huge fan of tube sound and I don't like the prospect of rolling to get good sound. I only kept my Vali for a month. I'm also not going to spend a ton of money on balanced equipment when I'm in a room with no electrical noise in it and cable runs of 6 inches.

 

I have a McIntosh MC2105 coming next month from my Dad and I can't wait to hear what they sound like with it.

 

The WA7 only puts out 1 W at 32 Ohms, so at 70 its a lot less, so its waaaay below optimum power. For that kind of price, no thanks.

The Lyr sounds phenomenal at its price range with the standard GE 6dj8's they sell from the schitt website even without tube rolling. So many people recommend it because of its price/performance value. 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Zashoomin View Post
 

So first of all the lcd2's are 50ohms... secondly it won't be that below "optimum" power (the reason it is in quotes is because you don't need an amp with 1W and that is shown by the fact that some amps with less than 1W sound better than some with more than 1W.) . Also the reason that the WA7 is that expensive is because it also has a DAC portion.  Thirdly and lastly, just because the output power of the amp is low doesn't mean that it is bad in anyway. 

 

With that being said I would not pair the LCD2's with the WA7 either.  :beerchug: 

Does the source output impedance play a factor here? The Lyr has an output impedance of less then 1 ohm (http://www.head-fi.org/t/530556/new-schiit-lyr-hybrid-6w-headphone-amp-yes-six-watts-rms/600#post_7354290) .2 according to elerno asking Jason in this thread, while the WA7 is much higher, around 36 for the low 1/4" jack and varies depending on selection modes, ref http://kenrockwell.com/audio/woo/wa7.htm#z.

 

Perhaps the higher voltage of the wa7 plays a factor?

 

Voltage is the work done per unit charge. Power is the rate of work done over unit time. 

 

Power(watts) = V(voltage) * I(amps)

 

P = V^2/Impedance,

 

Schiit Lyr:

 

P = 6W (@32 ohms) = V^2/(.2ohms), V = 1.095 volts

 

WA7:

 

P = 1W (@32 ohms) = V^2/(36ohms), V = 6 volts

 

Its very possible I am wrong can someone please clarify and elaborate. 


Edited by PinkLed - 5/8/14 at 11:37pm
post #7393 of 7748
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zashoomin View Post
 

Interesting that the lyr has more votes than the mjolnir.

I'd be willing to bet that the difference is purely based on cost.

 

One problem with most of these kinds of polls is that there's no good way to represent models that you listened to, but didn't vote for. Perhaps many of the people that voted for the Lyr didn't even demo something in the $500 and up range.

post #7394 of 7748

--My above post was probably 100% wrong. After reading these two articles I have a much better understanding.

 

http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/jan03/articles/impedanceworkshop.asp

 

"Any device which generates a voltage has what is called an output impedance — the impedance value of its own internal circuitry as 'seen' from the outside (ie. as measured across its outputs). Similarly, any device which expects to receive a voltage input has an input impedance — the impedance 'seen' by any equipment connected to its inputs (ie. the impedance measured across the inputs). The output voltage from the source is developed across the input impedance of the destination (often called the load impedance, or simply the load), and therefore the signal voltage is passed from source to destination. However, the input and output impedance will also affect the current that flows around the circuit too."

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Output_impedance (scroll down to audio amplifiers)

 

--Also by stv014 in regards to dynamic headphones, perhaps planar has a similar effect?

 

Quote:

An ideal amplifier applies a voltage gain to the input signal, while having infinite input impedance, zero output impedance, and no distortion (be it linear or non-linear) or noise. In practice, the headphone output stage of a low quality "unamplified" source may fail to get close enough to meeting these requirements by having:

- insufficient maximum voltage or current output, so you cannot get sufficiently loud sound without clipping distortion

- high output impedance that reduces the electrical damping of dynamic headphones (this usually most noticeably affects the bass response)

- capacitor coupled outputs that roll off the bass with low impedance headphones

- high distortion when driving low impedance headphone loads

- stability issues when driving reactive loads

- too low signal to noise ratio at low volume

The above problems can be fixed or at least improved by the use of an amplifier, since the input of the amplifier is an easy "load" to drive, and the source can be used at its optimal output voltage level. Interestingly, the "not enough voltage" issue is the only one that specifically affects high impedance headphones more.

 

--Also to quote http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/how-planar-magnetic-headphones-work-page-2

 

"Easy on the Amplifier --- Unlike the coiled winding of a dynamic driver, which creates inductive peaks in the impedance characteristics of the headphone, current planar magnetic headphones use a serpentine pattern for their voice coil, which makes their impedance characteristics almost purely resistive. Though they sometimes need quite a bit of voltage to drive them, they are not difficult loads to drive at all."


Edited by PinkLed - 5/9/14 at 12:05am
post #7395 of 7748
Quote:
Originally Posted by MRC001 View Post
 

This thread is potentially useful but something about it bugs me. These are separate questions yet the answers are mixed.

 

(1) Is it about which amps can properly drive the LCD-2 headphones? Properly means the sound levels the listener will actually use, are within the amp's normal continuous power, voltage, current, impedance, distortion ratings. In short, was the amp designed to drive a load like the LCD-2?

 

(2) Is it which amps have a sonic signature that the listener believes compliment the LCD-2 headphones? "sonic signature" simply means distortion. All amps have distortion though distortion comes in many forms. Some is more or less audible, or more or less euphonic, depending on the listener.

What I had in mind was (2) i.e. vote for amps you feel has a good synergy with the LCD 2. Then the results should show which are the most popular amps among those that go well with the LCD 2. I guess popularity would depend on a mixture of different factors i.e. cost and quality. So like someone pointed out earlier the cost aspect might be what makes the Lyr more "popular" than other amps on the list.


Edited by PTom - 5/9/14 at 1:45am
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