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Holy Grail of Head-fi Amps - Isabellina HPA? - Page 2

post #16 of 22
Thread Starter 


Wow, thanks guys. The Zana Deux... what a beauty... 

 

Thanks for the great advice. It looks like a separate DAC is the way to go. What DAC's are you both using with your ZD?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tankman View Post

As an owner of ZDse, I highly recommend it over the rwa amp.
 



 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Erik View Post

For that kind of money, pick up a Zana Deux. It's a real tube amp front to back. Read the owner's thread - you'll notice that it is usually the final step for most owners. Mine has been around for almost three years and I am still in love. It makes a fine preamp for driving speakers, as well.
If you're interested in solid state, go with the flat-out best: the Beta22.
I'd recommend going with a separate DAC.
DAC chipsets change every 12-18 months. If you buy a combined DAC/Amp, resale gets hurt when people don't want to buy the old chipset.
Also, I'm not sold on batteries. A well-filtered power supply is excellent and will last for decades. When it needs a refurb, you just replace the capacitors. Maybe $20-$30 of parts. Batteries degrade and need to be replaced every few years. You might have to drop a few hundred for new ones, assuming that they're available. I'd rather spend $30 every ten years than a few hundred every four or five.


 

post #17 of 22
Go check the classifieds - a Zana Deux SE is up for $1,750. That's a good deal.

I'm not using a DAC at present. I'm running a Marantz SA-8001, my TV and a Scott 350B tubed FM stereo tuner into the Zana.

I do have a clone of a Nelson Pass D1 DAC in boxes. I need to solder a few power supply bits together and case it. So, sooner or later, I'll be running a D1. I still need to re-rip everything into lossless and put together a music server, too. I'll eventually get it all together.
post #18 of 22

I tried the HPA (albeit in meet conditions) on Saturday with HD-800s and wasn't that impressed with it. Mind you, I'd just listened to some seriously great rigs, so it had an uphill battle. I'd definitely go the big tube amp with the HD-800s with a reasonable, high-end DAC, but all being said and done, my suggestions would probably come close to the cost of the HPA in the end.

post #19 of 22


What your recommendations for this would be ? rolleyes.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Erik View Post

<..>
Also, I'm not sold on batteries. A well-filtered power supply is excellent and will last for decades. <..>


 

post #20 of 22
Just get an amp with a name-brand power transformer, big capacitors and a few chokes. That does a great job with cleaning up power; batteries aren't necessary. To really clean things up, add an isolation transformer. No need to buy a fancy audiophile one, a $50-$100 electronics hobbyist one will work fine. If you want RFI/EMI filtering, you can buy a filter for $3-$5 and put it in a box for maybe $15-$20 total.
post #21 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Erik View Post

For that kind of money, pick up a Zana Deux. It's a real tube amp front to back. Read the owner's thread - you'll notice that it is usually the final step for most owners.


Uncle Erik, I've heard Ultrasones are not fans of tubes in general. What's your impression? I understand the Zana is not your ordinary tube amp. Is it so good that it defies normal tube stereotypes? I need something to make my Edition 8 sing like an angel. 

 

 

post #22 of 22

Uncle Erik you have sometimes strange suggestions but of course this hobby is subjective so take my reply with great of sald. I can say that Nelson Pass stuffs is only self-styled highend because of price! My opinion is it is coloured and after time I had to really sold it. And from what I know Linkwitz stuff is not much popular as well, mainly in diy comunity and mainly outside of the America..but I had not chance listen the Orions and truth is I would like to try it.


Edited by not_sure - 11/5/11 at 1:09pm
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