I have to answer your question by emphasizing the context in which my observations were made: I've been listening to the T1 on a DACmini CX that has the 1-Ohm output impedance modification. That mod is known to make the DACmini CX much more neutral (some would even say colder) than a DACmini CX that has the factory-default 10-Ohm output impedance. Many people who own the DACmini CX with 1-Ohm output impedance mod say it sounds great with the LCD-2, because the LCD-2 has shelved highs - a treble that's dark. I've never heard my LCD-2 with a DACmini that has the default 10-Ohm output impedance, but there are plenty of people who say they like the warmer, darker sound of the default DACmini, even with LCD-2, but especially with LCD-3, which have a little bit more energy in the high frequencies, not to mention other traits that make the LCD-3 superior to the LCD-2.
So.... with the understanding that 100% of my prior experience with the T1 has been disappointing, due to using the T1 with a "bright" DACmini CX, my impression of the Soloist is that it is a good match with the T1, in part, because the Soloist is warmer AND darker than my DACmini CX with 1-Ohm output impedance mod.
In truth, the Soloist might be no darker or warmer than the default DACmini CX, which has a 10-Ohm output impedance mod. I can assure you, in any case, that the difference in warmth and/or darkness is subtle - it's not dramatic.
That trait which is most dramatic at distinguishing the Soloist from the DACmini CX is the huge improvement in dynamics - which has impacted my enjoyment of both the LCD-2 and the T1. However, I'm absolutely convinced that my LCD-2 sounds better overall with the DACmini CX with 1-Ohm output impedance mod, than it sounds with the Soloist - despite the improved dynamics.
Similarly, the T1 is absolutely stunning with the Soloist, where I found it difficult to enjoy the T1 with the DACmini CX (for my tastes, at least) - it was just too bright, even though the treble was wonderfully smooth.. Literally the only thing lacking, that I can hear, with the Soloist + T1, vs. the Soloist + LCD-2, is bass energy. But thanks to all the power that the Soloist makes available to the T1, the bass is fine - much better than with the relatively underpowered DACmini CX. The Soloist outputs 2.67x as much power as the DACmini CX, into any given load, so it only stands to reason that with this extra power comes improved dynamics.
I can say that this additional punch or slam or PRAT or whatever you want to call it, affects the entire frequency range - right up into the treble, which, with the T1 stays every bit as sweet and non-fatiguing as with the less powerful amp, but even the highest octave piano keys have a bite that's just not there when the T1 is driven with less power. Everything percussive has authority through the Soloist + T1. Lastly, the Soloist is very resolving - it doesn't take anything away from the T1's ability to deliver detail. If anything, the Soloist reveals the LCD-2's lack of resolution, more so than does the DACmini CX.
So, I'm very, very, impressed with the T1 now that I've found an amp that can push it so well. This combination is so good, it's got me thinking I should just sell my DACmini and LCD-2, but I'm going to hold off until the honeymoon is over...
Edited by zilch0md - 12/20/12 at 11:25am