Amp finally completed!
At last, the lid will be fitted onto the amp as it's now finally complete
The LM6171's were fitted into place and the input caps were removed and 2 50uF bi polar output caps were fitted. Dr. White said the LM6171's made a big difference but I didn't expect the difference to be "so" enormous!
WNA with LM6171's on board
When I fired the amp up my jaw dropped to the floor, Dr. White sure has managed to get every last ounce of performance out of the LM6171, instead of listening to the music as a congealed mass of instruments and voices I found myself listening to individual performers and individual instruments.... so much space around the performers and so much clarity and detail.......
The introduction of the LM6171's has transformed this amp from a "good one" to "the best I have ever heard" without a shadow of a doubt. The energy, the impact, the slam, the clarity..... it's got everything you always wish a headphone amp would give you.
I played a favourite album (Roger Waters "in the flesh") 3 times (yes three times, that tells you a bit about what this amp is about!) and it was honestly like being back at the concert..... pretty surreal in fact.... it felt as if I was sitting in the audience and the applause and "whooping" (must have been an American audience
) was coming from behind me, in front of me and from left to right....... there was also one instance during "shine on you crazy diamond" where a member of the audience shouted "god damn" into my right ear (track 11 - 3:02 minutes in) I have "never" heard such clarity on this recording before which is why it's now playing for a 4th time....... I can't believe the bags of information I'm hearing through this fantastic amp.
The goosepimples have been up and down on my neck like a yo yo these past few hours and that's without the aid of alcohol and in the daylight hours...... I can't wait to hear this amp once the sun sets!
It's just soooo musical, so real sounding and it's streets ahead of any headphone amp I have ever listened to. I was a great lover of the Williams Hart Chiarra before I listened to the WNA with LM6171's and I'm sorry to report that the WNA absolutely trounces the Chiarra (sorry because Shaun Williams is a great guy and, through our telephone conversations re: the Chiarra, we have become good friends) I'm sure Shaun will respond with a "super Chiarra" but, until that day arrives, the White Noise Audio amp is (by far) the best I have heard to date and Dr. White's work on biasing the opamp into Class A and optimising the circuit for the LM6171 has borne fruit.
I'll review the sonic attributes of this beauty in the amplification section once 500 hours of music has passed through the circuit. My impressions so far can be marked as follows: (some amps are from memory but amps I currently have in my possession include: MF X-Can V2 Pink modded, Chiarra, GSP Solo 2004, B-Tech BT928, MINT (in a Hammond)
Musical fidelity X-Can V2: 4 / 10
Musical Fidelity X-Can V2 with pink mods: 5.5 / 10
Chiarra with OPA627 / Silmics: 8 / 10
GSP audio SOLO: 7 .5 / 10
B-Tech BT928 (with elna caps) 2.5 / 10
MINT (in Hammond enclosure) 3 / 10
White Noise Audio 9 / 10
Before I review the White Noise Audio amp in the "amplification" section I'll send it to Nigel, another head-fi member, for an audition........ he doesn't pull his punches and calls a spade a spade......... He is the ideal person to present a "second opinion" review.
All will be revealed