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NEW Vali Schiit AMP!!! - Page 212

post #3166 of 4963

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sonido View Post
 
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post
 

 

It's worth noting the source components employed by HD800 owners who have praised its synergy with that headphone. The first impressions of this amp were from people who are very familiar with quality gear and it was stated from the outset that the Vali was quite capable of resolving upstream components. Others have since verified these claims and I can attest to the same findings.

 

Perhaps the treble glare you speak of stems from your D3 dac? I'm sure the BH stuff is good but the impression I get from your post is that you're employing those things to EQ what you hear through your HD800.

 

The Vali isn't the be-all but it is a fine amp. It doesn't roll off the upper registers. Treble is extended, pristine and incredibly smooth to my ears. Really good match for the HD800. There are only two reasonable explanations for thinking otherwise - 1) your upstream components aren't up to scratch and 2) you are fine with stifling the HD800 best qualities in favour of smothering it into a totally different headphone.


Probably #2. I admit my preferred chain for the HD800 is far from the pure frequency response that the HD800 was designed to have. And that's fine with me. I care more for my own subjective enjoyment of music. I don't want to get into what's the right way to listen to music argument so I'll just leave it at that. I like the HD800 for its technical superiorities such as soundstaging and detailing, but I'm not a big fan its stock sound signature. I mentioned the Vali to not add warmth like the Crack, and for me it was bright. I guess was not clear on this, but I don't think the Vali added highs or treble either. I think it did a good job pushing out the stock sound of the HD800. From an engineering standpoint, this is a success. However, for my personal enjoyment, I didn't like the sound with the HD800.

 

The way I see it, it's easier to alter the signature of a headphone than it is to improve its technicalities. That's what I have chosen to do with my setup. Now your #2 statement is a bit loaded to say I have destroyed the best qualities of the HD800. I don't think I have done that at all. Like I said, I kept the technical qualities, but changed the sound signature. You'll find a lot of people follow the same line of thought to some degree. They may not openly seek to completely reshape the sound signature, but many have claimed tube amps to work well with the HD800, because it somewhat changes the signature to be more euphonic to the ears. In fact, if it was all about the numbers and purity of signal, why do we even bother with tube amps. It's known solid state technology have superseded tube technology as far as objective metrics are concerned.

 

I respect that the pursuit is for your subjective enjoyment. Please don't misconstrue my post as a rally cry for fundamentalist objectivity.

 

What I'm speculating is whether the added warmth of your pre and amp are masking the inherent glare of your source. It's stated elsewhere that the Vali is a glimpse of tubes "done right" - i.e. soundstage, transparency, dynamics - as opposed to the tube laced warmth which often comes at the expense of resolution.

 

Apologies in advance but here's a gross generalisation - those who want to preserve the HD800's qualities tend to explore the Eddie Current range, while those wanting to flavour the HD800 will look at the Woo offerings. From most accounts the Vali is in the EC camp (though not in the same league). By your own admission you want to colour the HD800 a certain way. Maybe the quality of your source is at play, as evidenced by impressions to the contrary, and you prefer to open door # 2 to address these issues. So your impressions are actually in line with what has already been stated.  It's just that your priorities are different.

 

 

edit: added quote for context.


Edited by olor1n - 1/25/14 at 6:19pm
post #3167 of 4963
I own the Vali and the Crack w/speedball and use them with my HD-600's.
As dumb as this may sound, I've been tube rolling a bit to get the crack to sound closer to the Vali.
It's not working out too well. I mostly listen to rock, so muddy kick drums and unenthusiastic snare hits
from the crack have made me decide to put it up for sale in the next day or two.
If I could find a hybrid sound between these two amps...like a Vali with a bit more body, I'd be in heaven.
post #3168 of 4963
Quote:

Originally Posted by olor1n View Post

 

I respect that the pursuit is for your subjective enjoyment. Please don't misconstrue my post as a rally cry for fundamentalist objectivity.

 

What I'm speculating is whether the added warmth of your pre and amp are masking the inherent glare of your source. It's stated elsewhere that the Vali is a glimpse of tubes "done right" - i.e. soundstage, transparency, dynamics - as opposed to the tube laced warmth which often comes at the expense of resolution.

 

Apologies in advance but here's a gross generalisation - those who want to preserve the HD800's qualities tend to explore the Eddie Current range, while those wanting to flavour the HD800 will look at the Woo offerings. From most accounts the Vali is in the EC camp (though not in the same league). By your own admission you want to colour the HD800 a certain way. Maybe the quality of your source is at play, as evidenced by impressions to the contrary, and you prefer to open door # 2 to address these issues. So your impressions are actually in line with what has already been stated.  It's just that your priorities are different.

 

 

edit: added quote for context.

 

Yup. You could say the Vali does right for tubes in that it doesn't color the sound as much compared to other tubes, and is more similar sounding to a solid state amp, and this is an engineering feat. The Vali is also likely more accurate and pure in the signal amplification compared to other tube amps. Even in my original review post, I stated that the takeaway is don't expect the Vali to color the sound like most tube amps do. Now whether someone wants to purposely color the sound to their own tastes is a personal choice. I guess we all know where I stand on that one. :o 

 

I do think this topic of tube warmth and coloration is important to mention though. It's very likely people looking at tube amps are also looking for and expecting that tube sound, and they would end up being disappointed with the Vali.

post #3169 of 4963

Give the Vali at least a couple of weeks / 100+ hours before deciding on how it is with the HD800. :wink_face: I don't find it harsh at all, extended yes, fatiguing, no. But saying that, 99% of my HD800 listening is now through my Naim.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sonido View Post
 

My Vali came in yesterday and I've had some time to listen to my headphones with it.

 

post #3170 of 4963

What are some good cables for Vali/Modi stack? 

 

Are the PYST cables any good?

post #3171 of 4963
Quote:
Originally Posted by daft357 View Post
 

What are some good cables for Vali/Modi stack? 

 

Are the PYST cables any good?

PYST are fine, but just get some regular RCA cables at your local electronic store or monoprice would be the easiest.

post #3172 of 4963
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonido View Post
 

 

Yup. You could say the Vali does right for tubes in that it doesn't color the sound as much compared to other tubes, and is more similar sounding to a solid state amp, and this is an engineering feat. The Vali is also likely more accurate and pure in the signal amplification compared to other tube amps. Even in my original review post, I stated that the takeaway is don't expect the Vali to color the sound like most tube amps do. Now whether someone wants to purposely color the sound to their own tastes is a personal choice. I guess we all know where I stand on that one. :o 

 

I do think this topic of tube warmth and coloration is important to mention though. It's very likely people looking at tube amps are also looking for and expecting that tube sound, and they would end up being disappointed with the Vali.

Yep it doesn't color as much as other tube amps because it's a hybrid with a SS output stage. Some of the cheap pure tube amps are really bad at harmonic distortion or even IMD or TIMD. High end tube amps can get to be very clean sounding, but at those lofty prices, ouch. Right now I've got my HE-500's plugged into my Vali and it can drive them, sounds real good.

Since, I think you like a clean sound, if you get a chance try the Asgard 2 with your HE-500's. You might like it better than the Emotiva.

post #3173 of 4963
Quote:
Originally Posted by tehsprayer View Post

PYST are fine, but just get some regular RCA cables at your local electronic store or monoprice would be the easiest.

Thanks for the reply.

I totally forgot there's a Radioshack nearby. I'll check prices before I buy anything.

Quick question. Is worth it spending a little more for USB or RCA?
post #3174 of 4963

I like the vali.... I don't know what it is because I just got the o2 as well but together they are very transparent. They sound like they don't exist but cleans up things and helps the bass out.

post #3175 of 4963
Quote:
Originally Posted by daft357 View Post

What are some good cables for Vali/Modi stack? 

Are the PYST cables any good?

PYST are fine but overpriced.

These work great:
http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_id=102&cp_id=10218&cs_id=1021814&p_id=5346&seq=1&format=2
post #3176 of 4963

The beauty of the PYST is their length, they are a decent cable also but come without clutter that would prevent the use of even my 0.5m cables.

post #3177 of 4963
Quote:
Originally Posted by phillyd View Post

PYST are fine but overpriced.

These work great:
http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_id=102&cp_id=10218&cs_id=1021814&p_id=5346&seq=1&format=2

I'll most likely end up purchasing Monoprice cables. I doubt there would any quality difference?
post #3178 of 4963

Giving another listen to Vali with HD800, I have to say it does as well as any amp I've heard when it comes to technical details. The soundstaging is wide and the detailing is superb. It has a very airy feel compared to my Crack. It definitely brings out the stock HD800 sound very well, and is especially shocking considering its price. That said, the HD800 sounds rather polite, and lacks the dynamics and euphony I get from the Quickie + Crack. I can imagine the Vali + HD800 combo be great for listening to more polite genres like classical music. For me though, I listen to a lot of rock and pop, and while many have said the HD800 is weak in those genres, I have to disagree. With my Quickie + Crack pairing, it sounds as good as any headphone I've heard in dynamics, presentation, and engagement. In fact, I prefer it even over the HE-500 for rock/pop with my setup. I think this speaks more to how versatile and malleable the HD800 can be depending on your chain.

post #3179 of 4963

^makes sense

 

so far I am liking the vali more than I thought.

post #3180 of 4963
Quote:
Originally Posted by phillyd View Post


PYST are fine but overpriced.

These work great:
http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_id=102&cp_id=10218&cs_id=1021814&p_id=5346&seq=1&format=2

 

Well maybe not that overpriced since they source their cables from Straight Wire and AFAICT the $20 PYST USB cable, for example, is identical to this $42 Straight Wire model:

http://soundapproach.com/straight-wire-usb-link-high-speed-digital-audio-cable.html

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