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DNA Stratus 2A3 amplifier - first impressions - Page 3

post #31 of 1861
Thread Starter 

Hi EeePee. With the DAC level at 0, using the HD800 on a balanced RS-OCC cable from Double Helix, I had enough volume for my ears at 2. Now, I learned when I visited Ken Ball's headphone store 32 Ohms in Portland last year, that I use a MUCH lower volume setting than almost everyone else (esp younger folks), so you might set it at 2.5 or so. Also, the RS cable has a very noticeably lower resistance than the stock cable.

 

I will try the HD800 using the stock cable on the 1/4" TRS output and let you know.


Edited by budx3385 - 5/20/12 at 10:54am
post #32 of 1861

Thanks budx, I appreciate it.

 

Happy listening.

post #33 of 1861
Thread Starter 

OK. I put a rock CD in, Robbie Robertson and Neil Young, Storyville, and played track 4, Soap Box Preacher

http://www.amazon.com/Storyville-Robbie-Robertson/dp/B000000ORY/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1337540985&sr=8-1

 

The Stratus on the HD800 makes a gorgeous sound, with great timbre on their voices, and great punch on the kickdrum and the low bass riff. Not just toe-tappin', it's a belly-movin', get up and move rhythm! 

 

With the stock TRS cable, the HD800 sounds darn near the same as the RS cable. That's what the DHT SET power does. Dynamite punch and not just separate voices but all fit together in a real, you-are-there tapestry.

 

And with the level flat to the Stratus, and the TRS switch on IEC, using the stock cable I set its volume control at 2.6, but with the -6dB switch on the Stratus on, I set 4.2. So EeePee, I think you will have plenty of room either side for adjustment.

 

Bye, I'm going back to the headphones......

L3000.gif

post #34 of 1861
Nice Bud, glad you're diggin' it too!!! I find with my DAC at full I'm usually around 2 with pop material and 2-4 with older jazz and classical. The difference in how "hot" the mastering was on the disc, makes a big difference. The 1/4" is a slightly different beast and should a bit more range on the volume knob.
post #35 of 1861

i like the color.

post #36 of 1861

Anyone who tried it with a LCD-3 yet?

Love to here the impressions and comparisons. Great job so far. 

Can anyone compare it to the Leben CS300?

post #37 of 1861
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sweden View Post

Anyone who tried it with a LCD-3 yet?

Love to here the impressions and comparisons. Great job so far. 

Can anyone compare it to the Leben CS300?

Hi Sweden. I'll be in Linkoping this August -- way better temperature there than here in August!

 

A local audiophile friend had both the Leben 300 and the 600 -- I didn't like the 300 with any headphone -- thin and bloomy -- but the 600 was dynamite with the T1.

 

I think the Stratus is a different beast -- the sound quality has presence without any hint of tube bloom, and so clear I can hear the noise floor on several CDs, and even some of the overdubs and multi-track edits. 

 

I received my new HiFiMan HE-6 yesterday, and it certainly works well with the Stratus -- on the Sonett it required the volume control set to 8 for decent volume, and on the Stratus it gets loud at 4 -- huge dynamic contrasts, sharp and crystal clear. I'm going to let it burn in. I think I will enjoy this combo.

 

Oh, and I installed the NOS RCA blackplates (dual, not mono) I purchased last December for the Stratus -- immediate increase in clarity and timbral depth.  I am really enjoying this sound! Can't wait to get the HE-6 burned in!

post #38 of 1861

Thanks for the initial impressions.  Looking forward to seeing more thoughts with other genres of music though :P

post #39 of 1861
Quote:
Originally Posted by budx3385 View Post

Hi Sweden. I'll be in Linkoping this August -- way better temperature there than here in August!

 

A local audiophile friend had both the Leben 300 and the 600 -- I didn't like the 300 with any headphone -- thin and bloomy -- but the 600 was dynamite with the T1.

 

I think the Stratus is a different beast -- the sound quality has presence without any hint of tube bloom, and so clear I can hear the noise floor on several CDs, and even some of the overdubs and multi-track edits. 

 

I received my new HiFiMan HE-6 yesterday, and it certainly works well with the Stratus -- on the Sonett it required the volume control set to 8 for decent volume, and on the Stratus it gets loud at 4 -- huge dynamic contrasts, sharp and crystal clear. I'm going to let it burn in. I think I will enjoy this combo.

 

Oh, and I installed the NOS RCA blackplates (dual, not mono) I purchased last December for the Stratus -- immediate increase in clarity and timbral depth.  I am really enjoying this sound! Can't wait to get the HE-6 burned in!

Thanks for the comparison. I have never heard the CS300 described as thin before except with one guy that had problems with the amp. The coloration to my ears where extremely tastefully and not very tubey, but everyones ears are different.

I can't wait to listen to this amp! You should bring with you the Stratus when you come to Sweden so we can have a small head-fi meet! It's a portable amp right? wink.gif

When you say there is no hint of bloom you mean there is no "lushness" to the sound? How close is it to say a TOTL solid state headphone amp? 

post #40 of 1861
Quote:
Originally Posted by budx3385 View Post

Hi Sweden. I'll be in Linkoping this August -- way better temperature there than here in August!

 

A local audiophile friend had both the Leben 300 and the 600 -- I didn't like the 300 with any headphone -- thin and bloomy -- but the 600 was dynamite with the T1.

 

I think the Stratus is a different beast -- the sound quality has presence without any hint of tube bloom, and so clear I can hear the noise floor on several CDs, and even some of the overdubs and multi-track edits. 

 

I received my new HiFiMan HE-6 yesterday, and it certainly works well with the Stratus -- on the Sonett it required the volume control set to 8 for decent volume, and on the Stratus it gets loud at 4 -- huge dynamic contrasts, sharp and crystal clear. I'm going to let it burn in. I think I will enjoy this combo.

 

Oh, and I installed the NOS RCA blackplates (dual, not mono) I purchased last December for the Stratus -- immediate increase in clarity and timbral depth.  I am really enjoying this sound! Can't wait to get the HE-6 burned in!

 

Did you use other amps for HE-6 before?  Do you like DNA Stratus more?  

post #41 of 1861
Quote:
When you say there is no hint of bloom you mean there is no "lushness" to the sound? How close is it to say a TOTL solid state headphone amp? 

 

Hopefully Bud can comment further, but I find the Stratus to be warm, rich, and spacious sounding, like the tasty direct heated triode amp that it is. I personally don't think it's sounds like a OTL amp or solid state. 

post #42 of 1861
Quote:
Originally Posted by santacore View Post

 

Hopefully Bud can comment further, but I find the Stratus to be warm, rich, and spacious sounding, like the tasty direct heated triode amp that it is. I personally don't think it's sounds like a OTL amp or solid state. 

 

He meant Top of The Line SS amp.  wink_face.gif

 

Thank goodness it doesn't sound like a SS amp.  

post #43 of 1861

Ha! Yes, thank goodness indeed. Fortunately it does sound like a top of the line tube amp. L3000.gif

post #44 of 1861
Thread Starter 

I really enjoy the Stratus now. It has well over 100 hrs on the NOS tubes, and it sounds wonderfully clear, quiet, natural, and alive with presence. The HE-6 is still burning in - some have said it needs 300 hrs to reach full potential, and I'm willing to believe that. It keeps improving every day.

 

The real joy today is that my T1 has returned from repair at DHC. It had really opened up after about 300 hrs, and before the cable adapter developed a crack, it had become my favorite headphone using a DHC RS copper Complement balanced cable with the Rudistor RP010B "quad-mono" ss amp.

 

So I compared it on the Stratus, and the Stratus produces all of the inner detail and natural timbre, with the added dollop of presence, of goose-bump "you are there" feeling on every note, from every voice. As santacore said, rich, full, fast and powerful, without a hint of bloom or overhang, very satisfying, gorgeous music.

 

and it's not fully burned in yet.

 

The HE-6 has a long way to go. I'd say the T1 is working the very best on the Stratus right now. 

 

For my ears.

smily_headphones1.gif

 

PS - oh, yeah, Sweden, the OTL comparison. I have a nice 421A OTL in the cupboard, and I owned the EC Zana Deux for a while. Very fast and clean,  but not one iota of real presence with headphones. With speakers, an OTL can work magic - I have the Joule Electra VZN-80 OTL driving my big speakers, and I love the sound. Tons of reactance in the motors. But not with headphones.


Edited by budx3385 - 5/24/12 at 9:50pm
post #45 of 1861

That's the type of answers I was looking for.

What's the weight of this thing?

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