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REVIEW: Ray Samuels Emmeline Dark Star Fully Balanced Headphone Amp - Page 5

post #61 of 295
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kremer930 View Post

I have said what I wanted to say.  Take it or leave it......



You respond with this and its not rude This is rude dude and that why I responded the way I didL3000.gif

Now I can tell you take it or leave but I dont want to appear rude alsotongue_smile.gif

post #62 of 295

I want one I want one!!!

post #63 of 295

Since quite a lot of people were turned away about the high price of the Dark Star, why not build your own like the Beta 22 from AMB Labs.

I was wondering how the amp compares to something like the AMB Labs Beta 22 or Beta 24 since they're both balanced amps or perhaps even the RSA Apache if anyone has any feedback. 

http://www.head-fi.org/products/amb-labs-beta22

post #64 of 295

Mike at headfonia found the DS better than the b22.  That is the only comparo i have read.

post #65 of 295
Quote:
Originally Posted by munkeeboi83 View Post

Since quite a lot of people were turned away about the high price of the Dark Star, why not build your own like the Beta 22 from AMB Labs.

I was wondering how the amp compares to something like the AMB Labs Beta 22 or Beta 24 since they're both balanced amps or perhaps even the RSA Apache if anyone has any feedback. 

http://www.head-fi.org/products/amb-labs-beta22


I have the Apache with the latest revision C and even in high gain it needs to be in the 1 to 3 pm level to effectively drive balance HE6s using a Zeus cable.  But even at 3 pm I haven't heard any distortion.  But the Apache is $3000 compared to $3500 for the Dark Star but you do get a first class preamp as well.  

 

While I can't say I know all the costs, I recall at one of the meets Ray commenting the parts cost including the case, custom transformer and DACT, the parts cost were over $2,000 before any labor.  If the labor is 32 hours let's say at $50 an hour (which would be cheap with taxes and other costs), that suggest a $3600 price minimum before overhead.  I don't think Ray is getting rich on selling Dark Stars.  As some have said, it is more of a statement product. 

 

post #66 of 295
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Addict View Post


I have the Apache with the latest revision C and even in high gain it needs to be in the 1 to 3 pm level to effectively drive balance HE6s using a Zeus cable.  But even at 3 pm I haven't heard any distortion.  But the Apache is $3000 compared to $3500 for the Dark Star but you do get a first class preamp as well.  

 

While I can't say I know all the costs, I recall at one of the meets Ray commenting the parts cost including the case, custom transformer and DACT, the parts cost were over $2,000 before any labor.  If the labor is 32 hours let's say at $50 an hour (which would be cheap with taxes and other costs), that suggest a $3600 price minimum before overhead.  I don't think Ray is getting rich on selling Dark Stars.  As some have said, it is more of a statement product. 

 



I agree. Last June in our meet when Ray brought the DS prototype he mention about the parts cost and was something about that number. I bet he makes the money on the portable amps of which he sells a lot of them all over the world.

 

post #67 of 295

I was at Ray's a few weeks ago and he went through the cost of most of the components.   I can guarantee that this is not a money maker for him.  He is making this one for the love of it.  For those that got the intro price, I don't know if he made a dime.  Maybe a nickel. 

 

It takes a very long time to make, during which he could be building much more profitable amps.  If it's too expensive for your tastes, then there are a lot of other choices, even from Ray, but don't think it is overpriced for the parts and time involved.

post #68 of 295

I wanted to not to say anything but that little voice in my head did not let me to stay silent. IMO DIY project the time it takes for a project to finish is directly proportional to the skill of the builder.
I know there are a lot of fine craftsmanship went inside this pleasnt looking and highly acclaimed amp and I know there are many factors in DIY which I have no idea about  but IMO it always comes down to the skill of the builder when it comes to DIY projects. This is a DIY project. 

To me a wiser thing to do is to mass produce this unit. How? Well decide on a fair price and fair profit margin and see how much unit must be sold in order to be able to make a profit and also sell a unit which is not price over the moon. It has been done few times before. It is really matter of getting enough pre-orders with non-refundable deposits and if the interest is high go for it.


I just wanted to point out high price does not always equals to better sounding and better built. While it might be true for this amp for most amps it is not. Most high price amps are mostly what I consider as an 'elite purchase', they are built and advertised for the very few who like to feel that they got the very best and the greatest because of the price they have paid for it.

 

I do apologies again, this is my opinion and I have no first hand experience with any product  of Mr Samuel. It is only my opinion and a rant to the designer in hope that they one day try to find a better alternative to mass produce their product in a lower price.

 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rmh1 View Post

I was at Ray's a few weeks ago and he went through the cost of most of the components.   I can guarantee that this is not a money maker for him.  He is making this one for the love of it.  For those that got the intro price, I don't know if he made a dime.  Maybe a nickel. 

 

It takes a very long time to make, during which he could be building much more profitable amps.  If it's too expensive for your tastes, then there are a lot of other choices, even from Ray, but don't think it is overpriced for the parts and time involved.



 

post #69 of 295
Considering Ray's only on serial number what..? 15 for Darkstars and it's been out for a good while, I'm guessing there's not enough demand to meet a mass production order. Hardly anything in high end in this niche is. Even mass producing it (and adding risk of it not being built right) you are looking at MAYBE $500-1000 discount. People that would buy a 2500-3000 amp will buy a 3500 amp. People who can't afford a 3500 amp don't buy 2500-3000 amps either.
post #70 of 295


That is very true, there are many possibilites and scenarios, as I said the factors which I am not aware of. I am just a little paranoid when it comes to things which cost a lot.  I think I better not say anything, all I be doing is speculating about things I know nothing of. I just want in the industry a new standard of releasing third party objective review of products is made as norm. 

Congrats to all who have purchased this amp, wish them many hours of joyful listening. 

 

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by Maxvla View Post

Considering Ray's only on serial number what..? 15 for Darkstars and it's been out for a good while, I'm guessing there's not enough demand to meet a mass production order. Hardly anything in high end in this niche is. Even mass producing it (and adding risk of it not being built right) you are looking at MAYBE $500-1000 discount. People that would buy a 2500-3000 amp will buy a 3500 amp. People who can't afford a 3500 amp don't buy 2500-3000 amps either.


 

post #71 of 295

Steve,  Have you listened to the D7000 on this rig?  Being somewhat of a basshead I am interested if this amp delivers in the downstairs department wink_face.gif ?

 

You mentioned that the amp has a slightly warm signature, are we talking just pinch of warmth or is it getting closer to the warmth of a tube amp?

 

Cheers.

post #72 of 295

The 27 ohm d7000 (or whatever it is) is way too sensitive for the dark star.  Its like strapping rocket boosters to a hampster wheel.  Just nonsense.

my d7000 hums noticeably, and only two or three (at most) notches on the volume knob are in play.  

While the sound was decent enough, it was just very hyped sounding and i was not seduced into listening further with the dark star and denons...  But, i confess, i am hot and cold about those headphones.  Their treble quality simply is not commensurate with their $1000 price.  Their bass, however, makes up for it.  In fact, the bass tries a little too hard.  Haha.

post #73 of 295
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Jester View Post

Steve,  Have you listened to the D7000 on this rig?  Being somewhat of a basshead I am interested if this amp delivers in the downstairs department wink_face.gif ?

 

You mentioned that the amp has a slightly warm signature, are we talking just pinch of warmth or is it getting closer to the warmth of a tube amp?

 

Cheers.


Sorry, no, didn't have any Denon headphones around, but I'm pretty sure the DS would kick ass with the '7000. The power can drive anything, with ease!

 

post #74 of 295

Thanks Wuss, so I am guessing the low gain setting is still not low enough?  Do you feel that low impedance cans would suffer on this amp?  Gosh darn it, and I was JUST about to order one.... LOL.

post #75 of 295

i think it's a matter of sensitivity, rather than impedence alone.

however, i wouldn't plug up my edition 8s to it. 

i tried grados, and AKGs, and they sounded pretty good.

 

however, the best headphone with this amp is the HE-6, followed very closely or equaled by the beyer T1.

if you have either of those, you need to hear the DS.  hahahaha

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