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Best solid state amp under $1000

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

I'm looking to upgrade my channel island VHP-2 to another solid state amp under $1000.  Here are the contenders that I can think of.  Let me know if you have compared any of these directly, which is the best in your opinion, or is there another you would suggest.  If this helps I'm using it with a pair of audio technica ath-m50s, but am thinking to upgrading to a higher end sealed can, most likely Denon AH-D7000 or AT ATH-W1000x.

 

headamp GS-1
stello HP-100
burson HA-160

PS audio GCHA
lake people HPA V181

blue circle hat peed thingee 1 or 2
rudistor nx-03
graham slee solo
musical fidelity M1HPA
 


Edited by Tuberoller1 - 5/22/11 at 4:29pm
post #2 of 27
I'm enjoying my new Burson HA-160 a lot, although I haven't A/B'd it against any of the other amps in your list.

You might want to mention what headphone you'll be using, though.
post #3 of 27
Thread Starter 

I'm using it with a pair of audio technica ath-m50s, but am thinking to upgrading to a higher end sealed can, most likely Denon AH-D7000 or AT ATH-W1000x.

post #4 of 27

The Blue Circle Hat Peed Thingee with the Biggie Pipe power supply is a great sounding amp.  I used to own the Luxman P1-u and feel that the Hat Peed Thingee approaches the performance of the Luxman at a fraction of the price.

post #5 of 27
I'm not sure if the D7000 has different sensitivity, but I didn't think the gain settings of Burson were a good match for my D2000. The low impedance port couldn't get loud enough, while the high impedance port got too loud too fast (and also revealed annoying computer noise from my Micro DAC's USB connection that is not audible with the Micro Amp).
post #6 of 27
Try a M^3. That's a terrific amp.

You can also pull off a Beta22 if you build it yourself.

Or just pick up a $300 Dynalo. No caps in the signal path and 1W of exceptionally clean power. Maybe not a new design, but it remains an excellent one.

You know, why don't you pick up two Dynalos and use the other $400 to drop them into one case and balance them? You should be able to pull that off for $400. This is also known as the Dynamid or Gilmore Reference when it was a commercial model. It was considered one of the finest amps at any price, and I don't know why it still wouldn't be.
post #7 of 27

I've seen a SE Beta 22 and Audio-GD Phoenix hit the FS forums at <$1000 and I think both those would be home-runs.  Haven't heard the Phoenix but I've read that it's phenomenal, and the Beta 22 is fantastic.

post #8 of 27

The m3 and b22 are fantastic for a cheaper option I really like the ck2III.

I also think you should consider spending more on your headphones and less on the amp, as I have found headphones/speakers make by far the largest difference to the sound.

post #9 of 27
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the suggestions.  Right now I am leaning towards the BC Hat Peed Thingee, headamp, or musical fidelity M1HPA.  Has anyone compared any of these, or have any other suggestions to pair with my Denon ATH-D7000s?

post #10 of 27

Add the Meier Concerto to the list for the D7k. It's a discontinued product but if you can find one they have great synergy with the Denons.

post #11 of 27

I think a commissioned 2-channel Beta is <$1K.

post #12 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by sphinxvc View Post

I think a commissioned 2-channel Beta is <$1K.


Can you get a 2CH beta for <$1k having someone else build it for you?

 

post #13 of 27

Yeps.  That's what I meant by commissioned.  

post #14 of 27
Thread Starter 

Haven't read much about the Beta 22, but plan on looking into it.  Is rockhopperaudio.com the primary place people get them commissioned from?

post #15 of 27

This one is also there http://solderworksaudio.com/ . I think Fishski runs it and he's a reputable builder. FallenAngel is another reputable builder on these forums.

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