I am new here to the forums, and tubes, and headphones in general. I am only 24 and recently into the hi-fi game. This is my first post, but I have crept the forums a lot lately trying to do some research, but as opinions go... I keep seeing both good and bad about different products, so I could use some direct help!
I am looking for a tube headphone amp. I recently heard my Grado sr325 headphones through tubes and they sounded so much smoother.
I have a budget of $2-300, ideally closer to the $200 mark.
Sources: NAD 533 and Luxman pd290 turntables, iMac, playstation SCPH-1001 as cd player
through either a Van Alstine Omega II preamp, or an Audible Illusions Modulus 2C tube preamp
powered by a Jim Nichols built 6l6 tube power amp
pushing B&W DM 302 speakers.
I have Grado sr325, and eventually want to get planar/ortho headphones like the HE-300 or similar... maybe modded Fostex?
I want something I won't need to upgrade tubes immediately, so it should come with decent stock tubes. I also want the quietest amp with lowest noise-floor I can get.
I would prefer Class A, and it to have a tube output (not a Hybrid tube/mosfet). I know the Little Dot mk1+ compliments Grados well but I want to avoid the hybrid setup.
I want a TUBE-SOUND. Warm and smooth, but still dynamic and detailed. If none that I mention achieve that, please let me know! haha
I was looking at the Little Dot mk3 or mk4, I know they are switchable for different impedances so they could run lower or higher impedance headphones.
I also am intrigued by the DarkVoice 336 amp.
OR the Schiit amps, but I believe these don't have a good tube sound? Valhalla?
Also those tube DACs and headphone amps like the Grant Fidelity TubeDAC11 or the Maverick Audio one look nice, but I believe the headphone output is solidstate, correct?
Let me know what other amps I might be interested in that I haven't mentioned, or which you'd recommend?
Any input about anything I have said so far is helpful haha!
Thanks in advance, and I hope to post here more often!
Edited by zackk - 12/31/13 at 10:55am