hey guys, i'm set on buying a pair of HD800s simply because i've heard nothing but amazing things about them.
next, they need a powerful, high quality amp and i have two amping options that i'm currently considering.
1st option: SPL Phonitor ($1,899)
the Phonitor has gotten really great reviews on its own, and as a match for the HD800s (apparently one of the best matches available). the main value in this amp, for me, is the built-in crossfeed feature. my main use would be for mixing/mastering. yes, mixing on headphones is frowned upon, sure.. but it just makes sense for me. i've also heard that mixing with HD800s and the SPL Phonitor is comparable to doing such on a set of quality loudspeakers. it's pricey, amounting to over $2,000 after taxes. but wtv, i'm willing to invest in a quality product as well as setting up for success with respects to my career in music.
2nd option: Woo Audio WA2 ($1,190) + 112db Redline Monitor Crossfeed Plugin ($49)
the black WA2 just looks sexy. i've heard good things about it too, but to be entirely honest.. i'm more into the Phonitor. the tubes in the WA2 would make the sound a little warmer to the ears apparently.. not to a point where it would negatively affect my mixing decisions tho, just a rather pleasant warmth (from what some users have said online). there's no crossfeed feature on this amp though, therefore mixing on headphones may not be as smooth of an operation as it would be with the Phonitor. this is where the Redline Monitor Plugin comes into play.
112db Redline Monitor - Crossfeed Plugin: would this be a competitive alternative to the SPL Phonitor's crossfeed functionality, if i were to purchase the Woo Audio WA2 to amp the HD800s? there's almost a $1,000 difference between the price of the WA2 and the Phonitor. The Redline Monitor Crossfeed plugin only costs $50.. seriously, what's the deal/compromise? i know it can't compare to the SPL's analogue functionality.
with all this in mind, which route would YOU take? i'm not a pro, nor do i have a lot of money, but you know what? i'm committed to the long haul and i see this headphone/amp purchase as being a long term investment that will allow me to create in a more acoustically accurate headspace than in my ****ty bedroom. i see this in a similar light as the time i bought my car in order to get to and from work. you know? it totally makes sense to me in that light. i want a headphone setup that will serve me well over the next few decades of my life.
i currently have Neumann KH120s for monitors, but my untreated room is honestly the worst (especially since my pops replaced the carpet flooring with laminate flooring). I also like the idea of being able to work on music anywhere.. while maintaining the same monitoring environment.
sometimes, my room just starts to get really bad vibes after i've spent some time on a track. my music is really dark, and creating it takes me to really really dark places and life becomes.. well.... incredibly ominous. so switching up the room for a different vibe sounds mentally and emotionally healthy to me.
also, i hate my desk and my chair (so if i were to simply invest in acoustic treatment for my room, i'd STILL have to buy a good chair and a good desk in order to feel ergonomically comfortable.. so when comparing the investment in room acoustics vs. a headphone monitoring system, the cost would be in a similar ballpark range).
would LOVE everyone's feedback.