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Noob question on entry level tube amplifier

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

  I'm a complete Audiophile noob. I was wanting to know what the lowest prices might be for an entry level tube amplifier for headphones? Also, what differentiates one tube amp from another? What should I look for and what should I avoid? Which ones sound the best and which ones sound the worst and why?

 

Thank you

post #2 of 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by Punchy71 View Post

  I'm a complete Audiophile noob. I was wanting to know what the lowest prices might be for an entry level tube amplifier for headphones? Also, what differentiates one tube amp from another? What should I look for and what should I avoid? Which ones sound the best and which ones sound the worst and why?

6N11 tube amp. $50, sold on Amazon and eBay.

post #3 of 3

Audio is a subjective hobby. The best for someone could be terrible for another and vice versa. You may or may not need a tube amp for the cans you want to use with it. 

 

Above post covers the lowest possible price for a tube headphone amp. Personally, I think 

 

You should look for a tube amp that is well matched for the headphones and source that you are using and avoid anything that isn't best-fit for you. You should put into consideration that tube amps use vintage (NOS) parts and are relatively expensive to maintain - compared to their modern, solid-state brethren. 

 

I would say the Woo Audio WA2 sounds the best (for me) because it is the only tube amplifier I own and one of a few that I have auditioned. The WA2 (smooth, clean amp) complements my Beyer T1 because it is able to supply sufficient power to the drivers and drive the headphones at a level I can appreciate my music. On the other hand, something like the Schiit Valhalla was not a good match (sounded bad to me) as at maximum volume, it couldn't supply enough current and was clearly not driving the T1 to its full potential. 

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