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LD MKIII for the HE-400?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Hi all,

 

I've recently acquired a HE-400 which I am enjoying very much through my iBasso D4. However, upon doing some opamp rolling, I realized the limitations of a 5V USB input in that the opamps drivable at those voltages simply do not suffice for the HE-400 (I practically have to choose between impactful bass and clean, unveiled mid and upper range).

 

Thus I'm looking to get an amplifier. I've read good things about the Little Dot MKiii and I've always wanted a full-on tube amp (for the cool factor and bragging rights). I am concerned, however, about how well it can drive the HE-400 (low impedance, high power draw), seeing that the output wattage that the LD can pull off is just about comparable to my stock iBasso D4. 

 

I understand that the Little Dot I+ is made for high power the lack of voltage gain in the tube stage worries me:

 

http://www.audiokarma.org/forums/showthread.php?t=274126

 

Can someone with experience comment on the matching between the MkIII and the HE-400? Or should I just go with an SS amp? Thanks!

post #2 of 5

Generally you'd get impedance mismatch when pairing OTL with low impedance phones. Unless you can get a tube amp with an output transformer you should go for an SS amp which is cheaper, for low impedance cans.

 

However, I'm currently using both high and low impedance phones coupled with LDMKIII and it works very well actually. Even Davidzhezhe has recommended the MKIII for versatility, unlike the MKIV, WA3 etc. of what I've heard. But I would imagine an SS amp or hybrid would drive lower impedance phones much more efficiently. So if you only have low imp phones, go for an SS. But if you're really into tubes then look for one with output transformer like the WA6, which of course is more costly.

post #3 of 5
The HE400 isn't that hard to drive. Really. Dont mistake it for the older Planars.
post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your input guys. Basically from what I gathered is that the Mk III works well with the HE-400, and (at reasonable listening levels) has no issues with lack of power and performs on par with, or better than, the LD I+. Am I correct?

Although from what I hear, tube deterioration may become an issue in the long run using low impedance cans. Has anyone experienced this?

Again, thanks for any input. This forum is great!
post #5 of 5
So did you try this? What was your experience and what gain setting did you use on the mkiii?
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