Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › Upgrading from Project Sunrise 2 (HE-500)
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Upgrading from Project Sunrise 2 (HE-500)

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hey all, looking to take the rig up a step here in the next few weeks and wanted some opinions.  Currently running HE-500s powered by a Project Sunrise II, fed by a uDAC.  I've been fairly impressed with the sound so far, but I know that these cans are capable of MUCH more.  I've decided I want to upgrade the amp first and have been looking into some possibilities.  I'd like to keep the budget around $1k if possible.  So far, I've been looking into the DNA Sonett and Woo WA2.  Not too many (i.e. none) high-end audio retailers or meets where I live, so try-before-buy really isn't an option frown.gif.  Any thoughts or recommendations?  Thanks!

post #2 of 10

Lol, I think you should upgrade the dac first, it's the bottleneck of your system now. For 1000$ you wont get much better than the PSII but even Odac is much better than the udac.

post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for tip proid...I'be always read that the udac was respectable as a DAC but not the best as a headamp. May look at DACs first then. To be honest, I have very little experience with DACs (just udac and integrated DAC in my Meier opera)
post #4 of 10

You can get the Schiit Lyr and Bifrost Uber combo for a few dollars less than the cap you set. I've had a lot of stuff over the years, and there's not better for the money... or near that money. Then roll the tubes in the Lyr to suit your taste, but start off with the Schiit GE offering. I've rolled about 6 different tubes, and I keep coming back to the GE's... and they're new and cheap.

 

I have this combination driving my HE-500's and absolutely love the sound! Try it... you might like it.

post #5 of 10

Schiit Lyr is more powerfull than PSII but in term of quality of sound i doubt that the Lyr could be a serious upgrade.

Get a better DAC with dedicated power (not usb powered) and you will get a far better sound in your headphones.

An Audio-Gd NFB-3.33 cost less than 400$ (shipped from china), with this kind of DAC you can't be disappointed !
 

post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheaphifi View Post

Schiit Lyr is more powerfull than PSII but in term of quality of sound i doubt that the Lyr could be a serious upgrade.

Get a better DAC with dedicated power (not usb powered) and you will get a far better sound in your headphones.

An Audio-Gd NFB-3.33 cost less than 400$ (shipped from china), with this kind of DAC you can't be disappointed !
 

Why do you say... "I doubt that the Lyr could be a serious upgrade"?

 

Have you ever heard the Lyr with the HE-500? Maybe the PS2, or whatever it is, is a serious amp... I don't know because I've never heard it. But, I do know what the Lyr does with the HE-500, HE-400, Beyer 880/600 ohm, and the Etymotic 4S. Excellent "natural" sound... nothing bloated or distorted... dynamic from the lows to the highs... and yet sweet mids... sweet voices. And you tailor them to your liking by rolling those two little tubes. And the tubes don't have to be expensive NOS tubes... I love the GE's that Schiit sell with the Lyr or after you buy the Lyr... they are cheap.

 

I do know the phones I have, or have had, really sing with the Lyr... and with the Lyr/Bifrost Uber combo... or the Lyr fed by my Oppo BDP 83SE. But, since the Uber upgrade to the Bifrost, the Lyr/Bifrost combo is mighty good!!

 

My IE's... Etymotic 4S... really bear out this combo being really good. Any noise from the DAC/Amp is gonna be readily heard with these IE's... and I can tell you that the noise floor is nil at even loud levels.

 

So, before you knock the Schiit stuff because of price... or because they are made in the USA... you should try it. Even if you buy it brand new, and you happen for some crazy reason to not like the sound, you can always sell it easy on Head-Fi or Audiogon... and you would only be out a few dollars.

post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skooks View Post

Why do you say... "I doubt that the Lyr could be a serious upgrade"?

 

Have you ever heard the Lyr with the HE-500? Maybe the PS2, or whatever it is, is a serious amp... I don't know because I've never heard it. But, I do know what the Lyr does with the HE-500, HE-400, Beyer 880/600 ohm, and the Etymotic 4S. Excellent "natural" sound... nothing bloated or distorted... dynamic from the lows to the highs... and yet sweet mids... sweet voices. And you tailor them to your liking by rolling those two little tubes. And the tubes don't have to be expensive NOS tubes... I love the GE's that Schiit sell with the Lyr or after you buy the Lyr... they are cheap.

 

I do know the phones I have, or have had, really sing with the Lyr... and with the Lyr/Bifrost Uber combo... or the Lyr fed by my Oppo BDP 83SE. But, since the Uber upgrade to the Bifrost, the Lyr/Bifrost combo is mighty good!!

 

My IE's... Etymotic 4S... really bear out this combo being really good. Any noise from the DAC/Amp is gonna be readily heard with these IE's... and I can tell you that the noise floor is nil at even loud levels.

 

So, before you knock the Schiit stuff because of price... or because they are made in the USA... you should try it. Even if you buy it brand new, and you happen for some crazy reason to not like the sound, you can always sell it easy on Head-Fi or Audiogon... and you would only be out a few dollars.

 

I don't knock any hardware because they're made in USA, PSII is made in USA too and when i'm buying a product i prefer to buy in USA or Europe;

 

 

I've listened the Project Sunrise with a stock Fostex T40rp, and with a vintage AKG K340, i've friends who compared both Schiit Lyr and my Project Sunrise with the same headphones (vintage K340) and with the same source (Dac Matrix mini-i) and although the Lyr was more powerfull than the Sunrise, it was a little brighter in the highs (not really harsch but it was noticeable), the Lyr was just a little more fatiguing for long listening sessions, but the sound is really in the same league.
 
IMO there's not enough difference between the PSII and the Lyr to justify the investment, i don't say that the Schiit Lyr don't worth the 449$, it's a great amp, but when you already own a Project Sunrise II it's not really an upgrade.

Edited by cheaphifi - 8/2/13 at 10:33pm
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 

Much appreciated feedback guys!  I've heard almost exclusively excellent things about the Bifrost, with a bit more of a mix on the Lyr.  Personally, I've never auditioned any Schiit products so I can't comment beyond that.  I know the PS2 is a solid little amp, I just didn't know how capable it was at going toe-to-toe with more expensive offerings (such as the Lyr).  With Schiit's 15-day return policy, it sounds to me like picking up a Bifrost and doing a bit of A/B between it and the uDAC should tell me all I need to know about which needs to be upgraded first with little downside if it turns out I don't hear the price tag's worth of difference.  Still open to any and all other opinions thought, will probably be at least a week until I can make a purchase.

post #9 of 10

Bifrost with upgraded USB is a good option. Do consider the w4s Udac, i think its one of the best sub $500 dacs, technically superior to the Nuforce udac. 

 

As for amp suggestions, the Soloist SL. 

post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 

Just wanted to give a quick update...I decided to take Proid's advice and got the DAC route first.  I've been reading so much about the LD DAC_I as a price/performance powerhouse that I just couldn't pass it up for the price a fellow member was selling for.  To even compare it to the uDAC is an insult to the LD in every respect.  The difference is literally night and day.  I almost couldn't believe it at first.  The main reason I ended up selling my Meier Corda Opera was because I slightly preferred the sound of the PS2 and honestly couldn't really pick apart too many places where the DAC section bested the uDAC by any noticeable margin.  The LD is on another level compared to both of those, without question.  Probably won't be my final DAC purchase, but thrilled with it so far.

 

Birthday is coming up next week........debating on seeing what all the HE-500/balanced amp fuss is about wink.gif

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphone Amps (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › Upgrading from Project Sunrise 2 (HE-500)