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Questions regarding the WA22 Amp

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

I am slowly learning Summit-Fi setups so be patient with this thread. The WA22 Amp looks amazing but I have a question about it and tube amps in general. Does it have a DAC and Pre-Amp within it? I just want to make sure how to properly handle Tube Amp setups.

 

http://wooaudio.com/products/wa22.html

post #2 of 6

Just picked up a basically new WA22 today and it is a dedicated fully balanced amp only.  What a huge upgrade from my WA6.  Not really fair to compare.  Super easy set up less than a five minute switch out.  

post #3 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beasleyd2 View Post

I am slowly learning Summit-Fi setups so be patient with this thread. The WA22 Amp looks amazing but I have a question about it and tube amps in general. Does it have a DAC and Pre-Amp within it? I just want to make sure how to properly handle Tube Amp setups.

http://wooaudio.com/products/wa22.html

Jack woo will modify an existing wa22 or new one for a price to include preamp outs.
post #4 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beasleyd2 View Post

I am slowly learning Summit-Fi setups so be patient with this thread. The WA22 Amp looks amazing but I have a question about it and tube amps in general. Does it have a DAC and Pre-Amp within it? I just want to make sure how to properly handle Tube Amp setups.

http://wooaudio.com/products/wa22.html

The WA22 does not have a DAC and it is not a preamp. (If it were a preamp, it would have RCA or XLR output jacks in the back that you could use to connect the amp to a power amp to drive speakers. Some headphone amps do have preamp outputs and can therefore be used in speaker setups, but the WA22 is not one of them.).

If you just want to listen to headphones, not speakers, you obviously don't need the headphone amp to double as a preamp.

I used to own the WA22. It is an OK amp, but not really a keeper. Great build quality, very quiet, but not a stellar sounding amp. I suspect its biggest fans have not heard much else besides cheapo amps, so my opinion may be treated as blasphemy on this site. I think the Eddie Current Super 7 is substantially better sounding and costs less. Although the Woo 22 is balanced, that in itself does not make it good. Balanced is overrated in my opinion. The best amp I have ever heard by a wide margin -- the Apex Teton -- is single-ended. So are the Super 7 and the ECP L-2, both of which easily surpass the WA22.
post #5 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by minimus View Post

The WA22 does not have a DAC and it is not a preamp. (If it were a preamp, it would have RCA or XLR output jacks in the back that you could use to connect the amp to a power amp to drive speakers. Some headphone amps do have preamp outputs and can therefore be used in speaker setups, but the WA22 is not one of them.).

If you just want to listen to headphones, not speakers, you obviously don't need the headphone amp to double as a preamp.

I used to own the WA22. It is an OK amp, but not really a keeper. Great build quality, very quiet, but not a stellar sounding amp. I suspect its biggest fans have not heard much else besides cheapo amps, so my opinion may be treated as blasphemy on this site. I think the Eddie Current Super 7 is substantially better sounding and costs less. Although the Woo 22 is balanced, that in itself does not make it good. Balanced is overrated in my opinion. The best amp I have ever heard by a wide margin -- the Apex Teton -- is single-ended. So are the Super 7 and the ECP L-2, both of which easily surpass the WA22.

This is not true.

If you follow the FS forums once in a blue moon one will be available with "balanced" preamp outs. (In quotes because the output stage is actually SE, but these rare preamp versions will only have xlr preamp outs). Jack Woo will modify a new or existing wa22 with xlr preamp outs for a price, just email him. I think he quoted me 400.

Lastly, as a former WA22 owner I disagree. I personally loved the pairing with my hd800 and lcd3. Compared to the super 7 and Zane deux, I found the wa22 to be quicker w/ less bass bloom. It has the speed of a powerful solid state amp with a tubey lush midrange. Moreover tube amps at this price range each have their own followings, and there is no obvious consensus which amps' flavor is best. That being said, if it's toss up, just remember woo audio has the more aesthetically pleasing, more sturdy, and bettercustomer service.
post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by rrahman View Post

. That being said, if it's toss up, just remember woo audio has the more aesthetically pleasing, more sturdy, and bettercustomer service.

 

I stand by my contention -- based on 8 years of OCD-like involvement in this hobby -- that the WA22 is rarely an "ultimate destination" amp.  On the Summit-Fi sub-forum, far more people gravitate towards Eddie Current than towards Woo. 

 

I have owned the following amps: Apex Teton, ECP L-2, Eddie Current Super 7, Singlepower Extreme, Luxman P-1u, Woo 22, Blue Circle HPT, and DNA Sonett.  The list is in descending order of sound quality, at least in my experience.  The Woo is not a bad amp, but for very similar money, there are better amps out there.

 

ECP Audio customer service, by the way, is better than Woo customer service.  If you don't like an ECP Audio amp, you have 30 days to send it back for a refund.  Try telling Jack Wu you want a refund for one of his amps.

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