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Amp recommendations for Audeze LCD-2 - Page 495

post #7411 of 7690

The reason that the OTL amps don't work well with orthos is because they don't have enough current to drive the drivers.  Tubes deliver a high amount of voltage but not much current.  That is why you need an output transformer to increase the current and lower the voltage.  But with higher impedance headphones, you don't need that much current so the high voltage is plenty to power them.   That is how I understand it anyway.  I don't think it has anything to do with the output impedance...then again it might as well.  

post #7412 of 7690

Does Audeze recommend any particular amp for the LCD 2? Or is there a particular amp that they normally use to demo the LCD 2? 

post #7413 of 7690
I used my M/
Quote:
Originally Posted by Poladise View Post

Been using an O2 amp for a while. Thinking about going for a Mjolnir next. Only thing is the O2 can be harsh/hard/forward in the mid range with my LCD-2r2s on many tracks and I'm thinking the Mjolnir might be the same. Can anybody give a comparison of the two?
I used my M/G stack with LCD2s and the sound was superlative. I kind of think the whole "forward" thing is blown out of proportion somewhat especially when used with LCD2s. Using with my 3s and it is excellent. Now I am wondering how synergistic the stack will be with the new fazors/drivers of the Audezes.
post #7414 of 7690
Quote:
Originally Posted by PTom View Post
 

Does Audeze recommend any particular amp for the LCD 2?

No, and I can think of several good reasons why they wouldn't. Audeze does it right: publish the specs of their headphones so people using them can decide what amps are suitable. This is a lot of different amps because the LCD-2 are so efficient and easy to drive. There's no way Audeze could keep up with them all, and recommending one (or a list) implies a negative connotation on any amps not mentioned. That could mislead LCD-2 owners and create bad karma with amp makers.

post #7415 of 7690
Do we know what amp they voiced it with?
post #7416 of 7690
Quote:
Originally Posted by AiDee View Post

Jan Meier does good stuff. ...  somewhat under-rated on headfi IMHO.

Generally speaking, audio gear that looks like a utilitarian black box without fancy faceplates and knobs and without a big price tag tends to be under-rated. The fact is, ampifying audio signals is not rocket science, it's a well known field with proven designs, high quality internal parts aren't too expensive, so there's no reason for a reference quality sonically transparent headphone amp to cost a fortune when produced in sufficient volume.

post #7417 of 7690
Quote:
Originally Posted by GrindingThud View Post

Do we know what amp they voiced it with?

I don't know - but will venture a guess. The sonic differences between good solid state amps are so small they pale in comparison to the huge differences in headphones. They could voice it with pretty much any good solid state amp and be assured of a good neutral reference point.

post #7418 of 7690

Is there any consensus on the best tubes to use in a Lyr amp for the LCD2's. I am about to get some LCD2 phones and while I am going to listen to the stock tubes to begin with, I'd like to know where to go if I don't like what I hear that much.

post #7419 of 7690
Quote:
Originally Posted by MRC001 View Post
 

Generally speaking, audio gear that looks like a utilitarian black box without fancy faceplates and knobs and without a big price tag tends to be under-rated. The fact is, ampifying audio signals is not rocket science, it's a well known field with proven designs, high quality internal parts aren't too expensive, so there's no reason for a reference quality sonically transparent headphone amp to cost a fortune when produced in sufficient volume.

 

Yeah, but hand-made by virgins, using snake-oil-based solder yields better results, dont you know?

 

I've always wondered about the people selling $5000 solid stage amps and $500 cables - please explain the design objectives used to make the amp or cable sound better.     Never had anyone say "our amp has a faster/better/XYZ ____, which improves performance".

post #7420 of 7690
Search for the Lyr tube rolling thread. It's long, but there's consensus FWIW.
Quote:
Originally Posted by HPiper View Post

Is there any consensus on the best tubes to use in a Lyr amp for the LCD2's. I am about to get some LCD2 phones and while I am going to listen to the stock tubes to begin with, I'd like to know where to go if I don't like what I hear that much.
post #7421 of 7690
Quote:
Originally Posted by vkalia View Post
... please explain the design objectives used to make the amp or cable sound better. Never had anyone say "our amp has a faster/better/XYZ ____, which improves performance".

Oh I've heard people say that, like "we use OPA627 op amps" or "toroidal transformer" or "discrete components, no op amps" - all are objectively defensible claims about improving performance.

 

Yet you've touched the key difference: "sound better" versus "improves performance". One is subjective, the other objective and measurable. To confuse things further, some - but not all - subjective preferences disappear in level matched double blind testing.

 

All that said, music is about artistic expression and entertainment. If someone likes a particular thing, what right does anyone have to say it's a waste of money? Even if it doesn't sound like natural acoustic music or a live mic feed, maybe euphonic distortion is the sound he likes. Even if he can't tell it apart in a double blind test, he may simply enjoy the satisfaction of owning and using it.


Edited by MRC001 - 5/13/14 at 9:47am
post #7422 of 7690
Quote:
Originally Posted by MRC001 View Post
 

Oh I've heard people say that, like "we use OPA627 op amps" or "toroidal transformer" or "discrete components, no op amps" - all are objectively defensible claims about improving performance.

 

Sure - toroidal transfers, discrete components, Class A / zero feedback designs:  all of these do have an impact on the sound and affect sonic quality.    But these can all be made for $1000 or less.     I was thinking more in terms of the significantly more expensive amps - what exactly are they using that makes them more expensive?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MRC001 View Post
 

Yet you've touched the key difference: "sound better" versus "improves performance". One is subjective, the other objective and measurable. To confuse things further, some - but not all - subjective preferences disappear in level matched double blind testing.

 

All that said, music is about artistic expression and entertainment. If someone likes a particular thing, what right does anyone have to say it's a waste of money? Even if it doesn't sound like natural acoustic music or a live mic feed, maybe euphonic distortion is the sound he likes. Even if he can't tell it apart in a double blind test, he may simply enjoy the satisfaction of owning and using it.

 

 

I agree with the last paragraph - if someone is happy with their perception, more power to them - who cares if it is a placebo or not?  I am a single-ended triode kinda guy, so it isnt as if i am married to the idea of DBT-uber-alles.

 

My only issue is that when it comes to reviews, a little more skepticism would be a good idea - hifi has a lot of snake oil that no one bothers to question (dunno if anyone remembers Shakti Stones and the Green Pens).   Forums are a place where people come to get advice, and at some point, if the vast majority are parroting the same statements of questionable veracity, then that doesnt help anyone.  

 

Or at the very least, qualifying some of these statements would be a good idea.    I mean, there are people talking about noticeable improvements in bass and treble performance with a change in cables - that means we are talking about atleast a few dB of difference.      Who really thinks that is possible?  An audible difference would be ridiculously easy to measure - so where are those measurements?

 

There are 2 extremes - one where everything has to be DBT-verified, and one where every claim is acceptable and where we all live in a yellow submarine.    I guess I am arguing for a world that is a compromise of the 2 - where subjective claims are subject to a certain basic degree of objective rigor.

 

In the context of the LCD2s, I find it hard to believe that 4W makes a difference over 2W of power - esp when most of the time, the amp is likely putting out <100mW of power.   There would have to be a serious performance issue with the 2W amp at/near peak output for there to be an audible difference.

 

I auditioned a Bakoon in Bangkok a few months ago, with a view to upgrading my Audio-GD SA31-SE.   It wasnt a direct A/B comparison, of course, but i heard nothing in the Bakoon which would merit spending the additional money.   


Edited by vkalia - 5/13/14 at 1:07pm
post #7423 of 7690
^ agree with all the above. As a side note, the validity of DBT for testing audiophile claims depends on the assumption the ear/brain system (EBS) is exactly like reliable and properly calibrated test equipment. Test equipment performance isn't affected by how a cable looks or the topology of an amp. Nor presumably does EBS performance vary under blind testing conditions. However, if under sighted conditions EBS performance varies then DBT is not as appropriate a methodology as it seems.

I think the cost of some 'high end' gear is a question of economics. Ours is a niche market, and for some producers who know they can only do low volumes they have to price high to be able to do business full time, or else run it as a hobby while earning their living elsewhere, or not produce at all.
post #7424 of 7690
Quote:
Originally Posted by vkalia View Post
Sure - toroidal transfers, discrete components, Class A / zero feedback designs:  all of these do have an impact on the sound and affect sonic quality.    But these can all be made for $1000 or less.     I was thinking more in terms of the significantly more expensive amps - what exactly are they using that makes them more expensive?

I agree. Here are the top 2 reasons high end gear is so expensive:

1. Low production volume: hand built is obviously expensive, and even machine built stuff gets expensive if you have low volume.

2. Fancy faceplates and knobs - can comprise more than half the overall parts cost.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by vkalia View Post

... there are people talking about noticeable improvements in bass and treble performance with a change in cables - that means we are talking about atleast a few dB of difference.      Who really thinks that is possible?  An audible difference would be ridiculously easy to measure - so where are those measurements?

Example: a long cable with high capacitance is a low pass filter with phase shift. If the capacitance and device impedances are high enough, the effects will be audible. The cable becomes an expensive tone control. It's not difficult or expensive to build low reactance cables, so in most cases these design flaws are intentional.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by vkalia View Post

There are 2 extremes - one where everything has to be DBT-verified, and one where every claim is acceptable and where we all live in a yellow submarine.    I guess I am arguing for a world that is a compromise of the 2 - where subjective claims are subject to a certain basic degree of objective rigor.

 

In the context of the LCD2s, I find it hard to believe that 4W makes a difference over 2W of power - esp when most of the time, the amp is likely putting out <100mW of power.   There would have to be a serious performance issue with the 2W amp at/near peak output for there to be an audible difference.

Agree completely. I believe DBTs are a useful and have used them for many years. Participating in any proper level matched DBT is a humbling and educational experience for any audiophile. And the experience teaches one to be a better critical listener which increases enjoyment of music. However, the DBT is only a useful guide, not THE TRUTH carved in stone tables from the mountain. In the same vein, objective measurements are a useful indicator how well designed and built something is, but listening (whether critically or for the joy of the music) remains the ultimate test.


Edited by MRC001 - 5/13/14 at 2:49pm
post #7425 of 7690
Quote:

Originally Posted by vkalia

I agree with the last paragraph - if someone is happy with their perception, more power to them - who cares if it is a placebo or not?  I am a single-ended triode kinda guy, so it isnt as if i am married to the idea of DBT-uber-alles.

 

SET amps can be reliably differentiated from solid state in DBT. The tubilicious sound is no placebo effect; it's real and audible.

EDIT: I'll add that DBT doesn't answer "which is better" or "which is more realistic". It doesn't express judgment or preference.

It only answers, "Can you tell these apart based purely on listening with no other clues."


Edited by MRC001 - 5/13/14 at 3:46pm
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