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Burson vs Lehmann for HD 800 - Page 3

post #31 of 49
Thread Starter 

The Auditor doesn't seem to come with unbalanced inputs ... shame.  The tech seems very innovative though.

 

Just to reiterate, these are the deals that I have the option of going for:

 

1) HD 800 + Lehmann Rhinelander $2000 AU

2) HD 800 + Lehmann BCL $2850 AU

3) HD 800 + Lehmann Rhinelander $2000 AU AND Burson HA-160D $1000 AU AND sell Rhinelander

 

HD 800 $2000 AU RRP

Lehmann Rhinelander $800 AU RRP

Lehmann BCL $1650 AU RRP

Burson HA-160D $1000 AU

 

I think that the Lehmann RRPs might have dropped a bit, but since I made a deposit on the above deals before the price change, I don't think I can adjust this.

 

The Burson seems to be technically better in measurement and parts (stepped attenuator for instance), but I am off put by reports of warm sound and less speed than the Lehmann. 

 

Please note, I prefer accurate, wide, smooth, clean sound with body, and don't like heightened treble, anemic bass, sickly smoothness or "tube-like" warmth.

 

Unfortunately, I can't audition the Burson prior to purchase.

 

Also, do you think that the Rhinelander (perhaps with an updated wall wart), is close enough to the BCL to make the extra cost not worth while.  The HD 800 + Rhinelander sounded "hard" with an entry level Marantz CDP, but good with my MF CDP, if not missing some kick and body.  The BCL seemed almost to have too much body, but I didn't quite have the levels matched.

 

So, which deal would you take if you were me???  Thanks!!!

 

P.S.  If I get a Lehmann, I would need to get a USB DAC that has asynch. mode and 24 bit/ 96 kHz (at a minimum) that doesn't cost the Earth.  Any recommendations?

post #32 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by BingCrosby1903 View Post

The Auditor doesn't seem to come with unbalanced inputs ... shame.  The tech seems very innovative though.

 

The Auditor can offically be used with unbalanced input but you need XLR to cinch cables.

Just have a look at the PDF manual on the SPL site under Unbalanced Connections.

post #33 of 49
Thread Starter 

Does anybody have a picture of the inside of the SPL auditor?  Thanks.

post #34 of 49

max_spl_auditor_model2910_02.jpg

 

 

and more of them here http://www.erji.net/read.php?tid=761821

post #35 of 49
Thread Starter 

Although there is an Australian distributor for SPL, they are in Melbourne (I'm in Sydney), and they will only sell it on a no returns/ change of mind basis.  They may distribute to a shop in Melbourne that is willing to do this.  It's $1099 AU RRP for the black one, which is much better value than Lehmann BCL at $1650 AU RRP, especially compared with European pricing.  I'm not really comfortable with buying it this way.  Shame, because its such a technically good performer on paper and I'm much more comfortable paying a lot of money for an amp that is great on paper (unlike the Burson or Lehmann tbh).  I trust measurement as much as human perception/consensus.

 

Does any one have any other comments or suggestions?  I'm getting itchy for my HD-800s.

 

Thanks, Peter.

 

post #36 of 49

Buy the HD800 with the Rhinelander amp. 

post #37 of 49
Thread Starter 

Any particular reasoning SP Wild?

post #38 of 49

You could get a 3 channel Beta 22 with Sigma 22.

It's a true reference amp and a good match for the HD800.

You could try to get a used one but be sure that the builder knew what he was doing or you could commission one of the professional builders.

The Beta 22 was on top of my list but I chose the Auditor because it was cheaper and comes with warranty, I was just not brave enough to put so much money in a DIY project.

post #39 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by BingCrosby1903 View Post

Any particular reasoning SP Wild?


Same amp as BCL but without internal toroid, this explains why the BCL might sound "fuller".  I find the BCL to be a very analytical amp with a slightly bright character, the exact same characteristic of the HD800 headphone.  The Rhinelander retails for $750 I believe...it seems to be the logical choice as it is free. 

 

Better still...open up a paypal account and realise the benefits of a global marketplace with increased global competition, rendering Australian retail prices extremely inflated due to an oligopoly of our small, isolated population.

post #40 of 49

Lehmann prices are seriously expensive outside the EU. The Rhinelander is around 300 euros here, and the Black Cube Linear can often be had for around 600. I auditioned the Black Cube Linear with the HD 800 a few times. It´s an extremely fast amplifier, with a strong "shock" effect. Makes a really strong first impression (which is why Sennheiser uses it as a demo I think). The problem is that for prolonged listening, it is nowhere near easy listening... The amp also brings out the sibilance of the HD 800 more than others in my experience.

post #41 of 49
Thread Starter 

I don't think all of the circuitry in the Rhinelander is exactly the same as the BCL minus the PSU caps and toroidal PSU.  For one thing, the BCL has an ALPS volume pot (some amps with the alps like the X can v3 have an imbalance, but the BCL seemed fine and so did the one on the Rhinelander (non-alps)).

 

They actually have similar measurements, same SNR and channel separation, but the Rhinelander is quoted at output power of 120 mW (I assume into 300 ohms) and the BCL 200 mW (300 ohms for sure).  No THD is published for the Rhinelander.

 

Whether this is solely due to the different PSU, I don't know.

 

Could anybody suggest an electrically compatible upgrade PSU for the Rhinelander?  Has anybody tried it with a linear PSU and compared it with the BCL?  The PSU plug on the Rhinelander seems widespread (unlike on the MF X series).


Edited by BingCrosby1903 - 2/19/11 at 4:00pm
post #42 of 49

Since you have such a hard time deciding, just get the Rhinelander now, simply because you get it for free.

I found a very interesting thread about the Lovely Cube, an exact clone of the BCL, that is very cheap.

Have a look here:

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/501046/first-impressions-lovely-cube-semi-diy-amp-lehmann-black-cube-linear-clone

And the guy that sells it now also sells it as a finish product:

http://www.alicemagicbox.com/lasercollection/lovelycubepremium.html

post #43 of 49
Thread Starter 

I just quite significantly edited my latest post above.  Sorry for any inconvenience.

post #44 of 49

I own a pair of K702 and HD800, and due to some friendly head-fiers got both the Bursom HA-160D and the Lehmann BCL at home. I´ve spent some time with these headamps and the setup is as follows: MacMini -> USB input of the Burson -> Preout Burson and into the Lehmann BCL. 

 

By using this setup I can easily switch between the headphone jacks on these to get impressions. Have used the K702 the last two days and I must say that regardless of what kind of music I throw at these two amplifiers the music flows.. The Burson is a tad bit warmer than the Lehmann. Anyway; the K702 really shines with these two.

 

Will couple my HD800 in the system some days to get an insight on how the Sennheiser fit with the German and the Australian "contenders".

 

head-fi-1.png

 

Lehmann_BCL_Sennheiser_HD800_Burson_HA-160D_2.png

 

 


Edited by Loevhagen - 3/19/11 at 3:06pm
post #45 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Loevhagen View Post

I own a pair of K702 and HD800, and due to some friendly head-fiers got both the Bursom HA-160D and the Lehmann BCL at home. I´ve spent some time with these headamps and the setup is as follows: MacMini -> USB input of the Burson -> Preout Burson and into the Lehmann BCL. 

 

By using this setup I can easily switch between the headphone jacks on these to get impressions. Have used the K702 the last two days and I must say that regardless of what kind of music I throw at these two amplifiers the music flows.. The Burson is a tad bit warmer than the Lehmann. Anyway; the K702 really shines with these two.

 

Will couple my HD800 in the system some days to get an insight on how the Sennheiser fit with the German and the Australian "contenders".


 

Nice, i would like to see that comparison. Subscribed! 

 

BTW, nice pics. 

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