Hi guys, I'm very happy with my "Stello Eximus DP1", it sounds truly amazing to my ears...but we all want moar moar moar, and I guess the next step for me would be to go balanced
This listing on audiogon has raised my interest into trying a possibly even better sounding headamp: http://cgi.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cl_sold.pl?preatran&1324341036
I'm from Team Source First, so I don't plan on giving up the DP1 magical sound anytime soon...and the "Cavalli Liquid Fire" is a bit too pricey, plus I really don't think that I'm a tube guy and I'm not even sure if it can run balanced(hopefully it can for the price ^^).
Anyway, after quite a lot of googling I've found this very promising sub-1k€ headamp: http://linnenberg-audio.de/html/spa1.html
It seems to be ticking all the boxes of what I'm seeking in a headamp:
a stepped attenuator and a gain knob, both on the front panel
a good PSU
no cheapish utterly colored IC's like most(if not all?) of the competition in the same price range...I'm not paying 1K to listen to 5532's or BUF634's, TYVM.
fully discrete with a short signal path
I can try it for 2 weeks at the price of shipping costs, which I now have made a mandatory condition when buying audiophile gear...we all hear differently, and I only really trust what my ears tell me.
1Ω headphones output impedance, so everything should sound equally sweet out of it
it comes with both balanced and unbalanced output modules, so you can really A/B the supposedly substantial improvement balanced amping would provide
a load impedance lower limit of 8Ω, so if I get the vintage ortho bug again they would run flawlessly as well
Any thoughts to share? I'm a complete noob when it comes to balanced phones, but this looks like the perfect unit to stanch my thirst for audio nirvana'ness
All this said, I think we got a winner all the way and I'm this close to pull the trigger
Edited by leeperry - 3/19/12 at 10:16pm