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Amp for sennheiser HD 650 under 1500$

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
As the title says I'm looking for a new amp (preferably a solid state. I don't like all that tube rolling biggrin.gif), I already had a look at the Sennheiser HDVA 600 and I really liked it, any more suggestions? or should I go for the HDVA 600?

P.S. Does anyone maybe know a headphone store in the Netherlands?
post #2 of 14

Too bad that you do not like tubes, because I think most people here would suggest the Bottlehead Crack with Speedball upgrade.

 

The synergy is suppose to be off the hook, and the price is well below your budget.....only problem is that it is not SS  :p

post #3 of 14

for that price you can easily get the violectric V200 new, for a bit less, the V100

post #4 of 14

Hi, I own both hdva600 and hd650 for your same reasons, and I'm pretty happy with my choice. Let me suggest you also a schiit vali or asgard 2 (can't say about the others schiit products), they offer less connection options, but for the money you pay, they are really really good, I wouldn't consider instead the beyer a1, it may be too bassy for your hd650.


Edited by thomascrown - 2/14/14 at 7:27am
post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 
Well the problem with tube amps for me is that I can't afford buying new tubes all the time. I don't really care as long as I don't have to do to much tube rolling.
post #6 of 14

Interesting ...Even I am looking for a SS for under 500 not 1500 , I thought I was the only one who thought rolling being fun is a bit inconvenient for some :D

post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
Does a balanced output bring any difference over unbalanced? or is it just a marketing trick biggrin.gif
post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by dead99 View Post

As the title says I'm looking for a new amp (preferably a solid state. I don't like all that tube rolling biggrin.gif), I already had a look at the Sennheiser HDVA 600 and I really liked it, any more suggestions? or should I go for the HDVA 600?

P.S. Does anyone maybe know a headphone store in the Netherlands?
Quote:
Originally Posted by dead99 View Post

Well the problem with tube amps for me is that I can't afford buying new tubes all the time. I don't really care as long as I don't have to do to much tube rolling.

 

You can actually just get tubes that are recommended by the folks around here so you won't have to do the trial and errors manually. And regarding getting new tubes all the time, even if you listen to your rig 10 hours a day everyday, the tubes are likely to die in 2 years time. Not a short time at all..

 

But yeah, convenience-wise SS is preferable. You can go somewhere and still let the amp running without having to worry about hastening its death.

post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by dead99 View Post

Does a balanced output bring any difference over unbalanced? or is it just a marketing trick biggrin.gif

I've just ordered a balanced cable for my hp... I'm really curious as well.

post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by dead99
 
 Well the problem with tube amps for me is that I can't afford buying new tubes all the time.

 

I may not have the experience or knowledge regarding headphone amps equal to others here...but I would NOT disregard the advantages of tubes based on the need to replace them after hundreds of hours. You owe it to your ears to try the HD's with a quality tube amp before making any decision. 

 

I own both HD600 and HD650 cans but would actually PREFER a tube amp. I feel that there is a sense of realism with tubes that SS amps just can't reproduce. (at least in this price range) After years of using a Creek OBH-11/OBH-2  and then borrowing/buying an economy tube amp from a friend...I've been converted. If anyone has experimented using HD's with various tube amps I wouldn't mind hearing your take as well. Since the transformer has fried in my Chinese amp I'm in the market for a better quality unit in the $500-1k range. I've been considering a few different options (even building a bottlehead) but I hate the feeling that I could have done significantly better if I had spent a little extra or asked more questions first. Good luck in your search and thanks to the contributors. 

post #11 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by dead99 View Post

As the title says I'm looking for a new amp (preferably a solid state. I don't like all that tube rolling biggrin.gif), I already had a look at the Sennheiser HDVA 600 and I really liked it, any more suggestions? or should I go for the HDVA 600?

P.S. Does anyone maybe know a headphone store in the Netherlands?

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dead99 View Post

Well the problem with tube amps for me is that I can't afford buying new tubes all the time. I don't really care as long as I don't have to do to much tube rolling.

 

Hi there! 

 

"Tube rolling" becomes an interesting hobby in and of itself. People like tweaking their audio set-ups in little ways. Many people enjoy switching tubes because they feel like are more a part of the music process, or they are contributing to the sound quality. Also, as "tube rolling" has become more popular, there has been no shortage of people willing to take your money by inflating tube costs. Tubes will last thousands of hours, so I wouldn't worry a whole lot about having to swap tubes out all the time. Pick out a decent one and just pop it in. I don't want to jump into a tube vs. SS debate, but I wanted to clarify a bit on those points (even thought I lean to the SS side for pragmatic reasons).

 

My first thought when I read your post was, "wow, that's a huge budget". The HD650 are great headphones, but if you're spending more than the price of the headphone on an amplifier, you're really squeezing the last bit of performance out. At that point, why not look for a better headphone? At $1500 you could get a pretty good amplifier and a pair of Audeze LCD-2. Just as a monetary value comparison.

 

Balanced headphones is an interesting venture. To really simplify it, each driver of the headphone (each earcup) gets their very own amplifier instead of sharing. Everyone has their opinions on it ranging from "no difference" to "OMG I can never got back!". An important note on these amplifiers is that you are nearly paying the price of 2 amplifiers, so they do end up being pretty expensive. 

 

If you do go balanced, I would suggest not buying the "official" Sennheiser cable. It's downright atrocious. They want $240 for something that you could make yourself for $30. They take this cable  and put this on the end. I'm surprised they aren't embarrassed to charge that much to their loyal customers. 

 

Edit: And personal picks for the HD650 that will really help them shine are:

Tubes: Schiit Vali, Bottlehead Crack

SS: Matrix M-Stage, Higher end Audio-GD stuff


Edited by elwappo99 - 2/15/14 at 1:19pm
post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by elwappo99 View Post





My first thought when I read your post was, "wow, that's a huge budget". The HD650 are great headphones, but if you're spending more than the price of the headphone on an amplifier, you're really squeezing the last bit of performance out. At that point, why not look for a better headphone? At $1500 you could get a pretty good amplifier and a pair of Audeze LCD-2. Just as a monetary value comparison.


Well the huge budget is because I'm thinking of buying a better pair of headphones.
I will visit a audio store soon and test some amps and headphones, and look at balanced amps to see if it's a marketing trick :P
Edited by dead99 - 2/16/14 at 12:24am
post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by dead99 View Post

Well the huge budget is because I'm thinking of buying a better pair of headphones.
I will visit a audio store soon and test some amps and headphones, and look at balanced amps to see if it's a marketing trick :P

 

I see! I would definitely test out some headphones with that budget. When I go to audio meets / audio stores (since they don't occur that often) I try to make a list of headphones I want to listen to. I definitely think you'll enjoy some headphones that will compete with the HD650.

post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
okay, so I (finaly) went to a store this vacation where i heard the: Project Headbox, Musical Fidelity X-CanV8P, Musical Fidelity M1HPA, Sennheiser hdvd800 and the Senheiser HD800. the biggest difference between the amps was mostly in the level of detail. has anyone heard both one of these amps and the Violectric V200/V100 or a high end Schiit amp?

Edit, due to financial stuff i limited by budget to around $800
Edit2, (damn I should proof-read before i post) does anybody know a cheap-ish balanced cable for the Mjolnir
Edited by dead99 - 5/3/14 at 11:33pm
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