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The HeadAmp GS-X and GS-X MK2 Thread - Page 351

post #5251 of 5267
Quote:
Originally Posted by sensui123 View Post


Should try...IMO people focus too much on amps and neglect the dac selection.

Yes, being how everyone loves their Yggy I figured I would try the Level 3 instead.

post #5252 of 5267

Before becoming a HeadAmp GS-X owner, I read this entire 300+ page thread.  

One of things I learned was that if your sources suck, the GS-X will let you know.

 

I think I've just experienced that first hand.

 

Yesterday I moved my "new-to-me" GS-X from my office to my living room in order to experiment with vinyl playback.  I wanted to see how my VPI turntable and Prima Luna pre-amp would sound through my GS-X.   During a short listening session, I came away unimpressed.  I found the presentation to be a bit thin and the soundstage much closer than I would have liked.  

 

At the moment I am chalking it up to a pair of 12AU7 Psvane tubes that I "upgraded" to last year.  I was happy with my tube choice when played back through my speakers and tube amp - everything sounded fine.  When I switched to playback via the GS-X I believe that I got a much clearer picture of exactly how my pre-amp sounds.  

 

I hope to spend some more time with the GS-X plugged into my vinyl rig this weekend.  I want to dig out the OEM tubes from Prima Luna and swap those back in and see how they change the soundstage.  

 

I think I am truly starting to understand what the GS-X characterization of "analytical" means.

 

Pictured below is my vinyl rig - minus the Oppo HA-1 (sold)

post #5253 of 5267
That's exactly what drove me away from tube gear: too much dependent on the combination of tubes! It's this annoying sensation that with some tube rolling one hits the sweet spot! It can be fun for some, to me it was just unnerving! But all the same, a beautiful turntable you sport in your collection! I envy you!
post #5254 of 5267
Quote:
Originally Posted by biosailor View Post

That's exactly what drove me away from tube gear: too much dependent on the combination of tubes! It's this annoying sensation that with some tube rolling one hits the sweet spot! It can be fun for some, to me it was just unnerving! But all the same, a beautiful turntable you sport in your collection! I envy you!

There usually is a consensus on what's the best of the best for each tube type, but that usually means the prices are astronomical for those tubes.
Buying a $3,000 amp is one thing, but buying $3,000 worth of tubes is another.
post #5255 of 5267
Quote:
Originally Posted by biosailor View Post

That's exactly what drove me away from tube gear: too much dependent on the combination of tubes! It's this annoying sensation that with some tube rolling one hits the sweet spot! It can be fun for some, to me it was just unnerving! But all the same, a beautiful turntable you sport in your collection! I envy you!


Until you find tubes that have synergy w/ your equipment.

post #5256 of 5267
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thenewguy007 View Post


There usually is a consensus on what's the best of the best for each tube type, but that usually means the prices are astronomical for those tubes.
Buying a $3,000 amp is one thing, but buying $3,000 worth of tubes is another.

A casual glance online shows tubes from $12ea to NOS "unicorns" $450ea !!!!    :angry_face:

...and to think I was just happy with that setup prior to plugging my GS-X into it.

Who knew it actually sounds like crap!

 

I'm participating in a tube-amp "loaner" program here on Head-Fi and wanted to get a baseline on my GS-X before evaluating new gear.  

 

The OEM tubes have been pulled from storage and are awaiting some free time.  Until then, I guess I can go shop 12AU7 and compatible tubes and drive myself mad.  

post #5257 of 5267
Go tuber go
post #5258 of 5267

Yes of course, there are recommendations. I followed those with a tube amp that had the 6DE7/6EW7 installed. Recommendations for tube rolling were to replace the rectifier tube with a Princess Sophia 274B tube. Did that, and despite claims to mightily improve the sound stage, I couldn't hear much of a difference. Next: recommendations for the drive tubes were 6DN7/6GL7/6EM7 as the ultimate solution. Did that, and the amp started to hum because the drivers had far too high an amplification! Next: replaced the 6DE7/6EW7 with NOS Sylvania 6DR7. Those did sound really great, but after about two weeks the tubes started to develop some static noise that made them unusable. Even though the tubes used were not very expensive, tube rolling in this case was a total failure! This made me to look for a good solid state headphone amp, and voilà, this when the GS-X Mk2 entered the arena! So tube rolling essentially made me finding the best amp I can think of.

 

I do not say that this is the end of my tube amp career. I'd love to get hold of an ALO Studio Six tube amp. Maybe at one point! The other nice thing I stumbled over at Computer Audiophile is the ZOTL10/40 power amplifier. As already mentioned, sooner or later, I'll be veering into two channel audio and I am keeping my eyes open for a good amp/speaker pair. The ZOTL amps have a tremendous reputation and this might very well be my return to tube amps!

post #5259 of 5267

I am considering selling my GS-X MK2 230V in exchange for a 430HA. Based on my audition 430 has much better synergy with the Utopia. So if u are interested check out my listing and PM me. Also if you have a similar mint conditioned 430HA in 230V, I can happily trade with u.

post #5260 of 5267
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yugo View Post
 

I am considering selling my GS-X MK2 230V in exchange for a 430HA. Based on my audition 430 has much better synergy with the Utopia. So if u are interested check out my listing and PM me. Also if you have a similar mint conditioned 430HA in 230V, I can happily trade with u.


If you like the 430HA better, that fine, go for it. I'd still suspect the source to be the culprit and not the GSX-Mk2.

Your audition was at home with your source set up or somewhere else using a different source ...?

post #5261 of 5267
Quote:
Originally Posted by icebear View Post
 


If you like the 430HA better, that fine, go for it. I'd still suspect the source to be the culprit and not the GSX-Mk2.

Your audition was at home with your source set up or somewhere else using a different source ...?

It was with different source, but my understanding of the GSX is probably a little different from you. I hear it as a bit bright sounding.

post #5262 of 5267
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yugo View Post
 

It was with different source, but my understanding of the GSX is probably a little different from you. I hear it as a bit bright sounding.

 

That must be your source...my GS-X Mk2 did sound that way with my W4S DAC-2 (sold long ago)...but bang on with the right DAC. With the Hugo TT right now it is spot on to my ears. Also the recordings your listening too if they are bright, the GS-X Mk2 won't hide that...neither if they are warm. FWIW, here are the measurements of the GS-X Mk2:

 

http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/HeadAmpGSXmk2.pdf

 

Definitely measures very flat. :o

post #5263 of 5267

Yup, it's definitely a source thing.  I've used a few vintage R2R DACs as well as my current Yggdrasil with the GS-X mk2 and no hint of brightness.  The Anedio D1 and D2, absolutely, but that was the source.

post #5264 of 5267
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yugo View Post
 

It was with different source, but my understanding of the GSX is probably a little different from you. I hear it as a bit bright sounding.


Your DAC has different filter settings, have you played around with these? And I trust the phase (XLR output) is correct as well, sometimes US vs non-US equipment has a different hot pin. My Marantz SA11s3 has this issue, I switched to "INV" phase and it sounds good. Anyway you seem to be set to travel along to a different amp. Good luck in achieving a sound you like.

post #5265 of 5267
Thank you for the thoughtful responses! @icebear I am using hybrid filter on my rockna, but I have tried the other 2, hybrid is what I hear to be the most organic and spacious. I also played with invert phase, but I can hear nothing that is different. The source I demo the Utopia is the Metrum Pavane, which I believe to have a much softer edge, less resolving and much less dynamics compare to the Rockna. So the synergy is really in the whole system so to speak. Either to keep the more resolving DAC and go with a slight coloured amp, or to change to a less resolving DAC and keep the more neutral amp. While I will still think GSX is a bit bright until I hear something different.
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