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Speaker amps for headphones - Page 33

post #481 of 2629
Quote:
Originally Posted by Happy Camper View Post

Malveux tried several headphones on the little Emo and some of the more sensitive headphones had some higher noisefloor that was resolved with a load resistor. Otherwise, you should have no trouble with careful volume control. It's a long thread to glean any real information on the dynamic cans tried as he did his first test with the HEs. But he did run Denon 5000, Grados, and a few others off the speaker taps with no problems. http://www.head-fi.org/t/629352/he-500-lcd2-d5000-dt770-sr80-on-a-speaker-amp-emotiva-mini-x-a-100-project
On the q701, u wont hear any noise till the mini x pasts 2 or 3 o clock. You will be deaf before that. Regarding safe or not debate, to put things in perspective, i listen to my q701 on Fiio e9k at 11:30 or 12 at the most. You be the Judge whether the mini x is safe if it's at 11 running the q701.
post #482 of 2629
Quote:
Originally Posted by gjc11028 View Post

Cannot say anything about how they sound with headphones, but I thought that's the odyssey room was one of the nicest sounding rooms for affordable audio at the capital audio fest. Nice clean sound for not much money.

I agree.  Klaus was a joy to talk to as well.  The Khartago mono blocks was definitely sounding good.  If I was to setup a buget 2 channel system.  I would go with these and the Maggies.  

 

I also like the Philharmonic 3s and the Salk soundscape 8s..

post #483 of 2629
I'd definitely like a Salk soundscape for myself too. On the other hand, any HE-6 here being driven on monoblocks?
post #484 of 2629
Quote:
Originally Posted by DefQon View Post

I'd definitely like a Salk soundscape for myself too. On the other hand, any HE-6 here being driven on monoblocks?

 

Happy Camper use A pair of Rotel mono blocks.  I once used a pair of Emotive UPA 1s.

post #485 of 2629
Quote:
Originally Posted by DefQon View Post

I'd definitely like a Salk soundscape for myself too. On the other hand, any HE-6 here being driven on monoblocks?

Not yet, but i am going to try passive bi-amping with my integrated once i get my HE-6 back from BTG Audio (8-strand cable). tongue_smile.gif

post #486 of 2629
Quote:
Originally Posted by DefQon View Post

I'd definitely like a Salk soundscape for myself too. On the other hand, any HE-6 here being driven on monoblocks?
I use 2a3 monoblocks sometimes. About 12 watts push pull. I alternate amps between speakers and headphones for some variety.
post #487 of 2629
Quote:
Originally Posted by gjc11028 View Post


I use 2a3 monoblocks sometimes. About 12 watts push pull. I alternate amps between speakers and headphones for some variety.

How is it with the P-P 12 watts through those 2A3's? Do you feel it lacks finesse when driving the HE-6's? I'm leaning towards buying a HE-6 sometime soon and would like feedback how it will perform through some good class D ss or class A tube monoblocks as I will be getting an amp tailored specifically for the HE-6 (and driving speakers) locally. 

post #488 of 2629
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post

 

Happy Camper use A pair of Rotel mono blocks.  I once used a pair of Emotive UPA 1s.

Yeah I've seen HC's Rotel's pop up time to time on the bay here. How were the Emotive UPA 1s?

post #489 of 2629
Quote:
Originally Posted by DefQon View Post

Yeah I've seen HC's Rotel's pop up time to time on the bay here. How were the Emotive UPA 1s?

 

They are pretty good.  Better with the 6s than the Beta22 and any other headphone amp I can think of.  I also like them better than the Beta24 we had there as well.  I could live with that setup.  Other speaker amps clearly out shined them - SimAudo, First Watt and so on..

post #490 of 2629
Quote:
Originally Posted by DefQon View Post

How is it with the P-P 12 watts through those 2A3's? Do you feel it lacks finesse when driving the HE-6's? I'm leaning towards buying a HE-6 sometime soon and would like feedback how it will perform through some good class D ss or class A tube monoblocks as I will be getting an amp tailored specifically for the HE-6 (and driving speakers) locally. 

They are great.  I also use a 300B SEt that has less power, and there are no issues.   I also use a 150 watt hybrid and truthfully the differences in power are not relevant.  I agree with the comment above that quality matters, and here that probably includes having good output transformers if you get a lower power tube amp.   I have a new adapter that allows me to eliminate the series resistors that are in the hfiman adapter, but even with that i did not really feel there were any issues.  what i might recommend is that you get the headphones and one of the he adapters (it is only 100 dollars) and take it to some shops and listen. even if you end not using the adapter, it will give you a decent flavor of the different options and someone probably would buy it for half.  

post #491 of 2629

Folks:

 

The new resistor boxes are here, and the first one has been hooked up.  No noise, no hiss, no errors.  Sounds great.  Different than the Odyssey.  And that's all I'll say about that until I get some head time in with the demo tracks I have been using.  First I'll be comparing the two resistor boxes, because if there is a difference, I want my preferred box to go up against the Odyssey.

 

Okay, back to staring at the work that I haven't been able to get into at all today...

post #492 of 2629
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary in MD View Post

Folks:

 

The new resistor boxes are here, and the first one has been hooked up.  No noise, no hiss, no errors.  Sounds great.  Different than the Odyssey.  And that's all I'll say about that until I get some head time in with the demo tracks I have been using.  First I'll be comparing the two resistor boxes, because if there is a difference, I want my preferred box to go up against the Odyssey.

 

Okay, back to staring at the work that I haven't been able to get into at all today...

 

Just to confirm the two boxes are only different in the brand of resistors being utilised? As in mills resistors in one box and some other brand in the other?

post #493 of 2629
When done, Plz share your impression and the specs/config of the 2 boxes. Thanks.
post #494 of 2629

@ nk77, as far as I know, the only differences between the boxes are the Mills resistors vs the cheap concrete ones.  Of course to verify that I'd have to open the boxes, which I'm not gonna do -- at least until the end of the comparison.  So in fact there could be leprechauns and/or fairies in either box for all I know, which is another good reason to not open the boxes (I don't need little monsters loose in my house, I already have dogs, and that's enough monsters running around here for me).

 

@ koiloco, you might have noticed in my posts on this thread that I always share my impressions in gory, verbose detail, whether you folks want to read them or not, so I will definitely do so in regards to the resistor boxes.  As to the specs, I believe there are two 10-ohm, 12-watt, 1% Mills resistors and two 2-ohm, 12-watt 1% Mills resistors in one of the boxes, since those are the parts I sent to Jan Plummer at TBI to use.  The single-ended box he initially sent me had concrete 5% resistors in them, and I believe that's what's in the second box this time as well... or perhaps that's the box with the leprechauns in it.

 

As to the configuration, if you look further up in this thread you will see Jan Plummer's circuit designs for the boxes, one for balanced and the other for SE.  He originally sent me an SE box since I hadn't told him that I was using balanced cables.  Since I had to swap out that box anyway, I took the opportunity to get a second box made with the Mills resistors, just because I wanted to hear for myself whether there was any difference.  I will definitely let you folks know what I hear, or at least think I hear...

post #495 of 2629

Alright ladies and germs, here is another exciting installment of AMP vs. AMP!!!!  Or in this case, RESISTOR BOX 1 vs. RESISTOR BOX 2!!!

 

Yeah, I know not a very thrilling title.  Sorry.

 

To recap for those not paying attention, or with short memories, or too lazy to read back a few pages in the thread, I asked Jan Plummer to make me 2 balanced resistor boxes to go with my Millenia amp.  One of the boxes has Jan's standard concrete 5% resistors, one has Mills low-inductance 1% resistors.  I don't know which box has which resistors (though I have a suspicion, probably wrong). I have spent the last several days comparing the two, using the same songs I used to compare the other amps I reported on earlier in this thread.  I matched SPLs, and actually tried a couple of different volume levels to see if that made any difference (it does, a bit).  I first listened to each box for all of the songs, writing down my impressions, then did a back and forth session on individual songs to get a better sense of how they compared on each song.  I did this because I wanted to make sure that the different words I used in the continuous sessions really described differences when listening to a particular song, one box right after the other. 

 

After several hours of critical listening, I can tell you that there is a clearly audible difference between the 2 boxes:

 

Box 1 has a richer, warmer sound -- very tube-like.  On some songs that warmth is really engaging, even thrilling, as it provides a life-like presentation that just envelopes you.  On other songs the warmth intrudes a bit, with the bass slopping over just slightly into the mid-range and covering up some of the detail.  Even at its worst though, the sound is still extremely good -- excellent energy across the spectrum, with the high end particularly well-presented:  Cymbals and any other percussive instruments sound spectacular, as the entire range of their sound is transmitted, with clear strike, reverb, sustain and decay.  Cymbals are never hissy. There is NEVER any harshness.  Period.  You can listen to the Red Hot Chili Peppers for hours and not get a headache (I know, because I did it).   Voices sound particularly good with this set of resistors.  As I said, the price paid for this warmth is a bit more bass boom and a tiny bit of muddiness in the lower registers of pianos and in other acoustic instruments in the lower part of the spectrum.  On a big-band jazz tune, the mids can get a bit overwhelmed, and the overall sound can be a bit muddy.  The problem is less obvious with electric instruments. 

 

Box 2 is cleaner, clearer, more analytical-sounding -- more like what many of us expect a solid-state amp to sound like.  Bass is tighter, with less boom.  The mids are less rich and warm, voices in particular sounding colder.  The high end is slightly hissier.  There is a tiny bit of harshness up there on horns and reed instruments.  Nothing awful -- not even close to the MJ or Emotiva levels of harshness.  Just more than the Millenia has with Box 1.  I will note that when I first connected Box 2 after hours of listening to Box 1, I was dismayed by the initial sound.  Where did the Millenia go?  How'd the MJ get back in here?  But after only about 1/2 an hour, the sound clearly changed for the better, so I'm guessing that these resistors needed to warm up or break in or something in order to sound decent.  After a couple of days of listening, Box 2 is much closer to Box 1's sound, particularly if I bump the volume up from 75dBs on my phone sound meter to 80dBs.  Then the second box's sound gets a bit richer, the high end gains a bit more depth, seeming less hissy, without losing the cleanliness in the bass and lower mid range. 

 

Which is better?  I guess that depends on which you like better:  tube amps or solid state. On balance, I think Box 2's flaws overall are smaller, less intrusive and less obvious than Box 1s, and I think the sound has improved enough that it will carry the TBI flag into battle against the Cyclops.  But I reserve the right to change my mind (hey I paid for both boxes!).

 

Oh, and I'm guessing that the Mills resistors are in Box 2, but I'll ask Jan on Monday for the answer (I'm not opening these boxes...).

 

Next up I will provide a more complete write-up on the Millenia's sound.  I've been hinting at it in various posts (including this one), but never really provided details.  First, however, I have to go feed the dogs, and then pick some peaches before the bugs and groundhogs eat all of them.  Stay tuned for another installment later (probably much later) tonight.

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