Am I suppose to hear a difference?
Oct 23, 2005 at 12:52 PM Post #31 of 42

elmoe

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I'm with fewtch on that one. You should hear a significant difference between a pimeta and a PPA, if you don't something is quite wrong, may I suggest buying a few pair of interconnects, different brands would be better, and switching back and forth from the pimeta to the PPA using the same pair on each amp? You should be able to clearly tell the difference.
 
Oct 23, 2005 at 1:31 PM Post #32 of 42

Trogdor

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Comparing SS v. Tube is apples and oranges: Tubes sound dramactically different due to the various second harmonic distortions (i.e. fuzz) different tubes create. Perhaps one could compare Tube vs. Tube with the same tubes in order to understand how well the fuzz is actually conveyed.
evil_smiley.gif


I think tyre is actually very close to the truth minus the frequency response. I think that's what your paying for in the end when it comes to SS. I find that in general, the differences in SS amps are NEVER dramactic. Let me qualify that statement some more, in terms of dramactic, its not like listening to a pair of Grado's and then switching to Senn's. That's dramactic to me. I don't find those nigh and day differences when comparing two well designed SS amplifiers (and there are many).

In general, an amp's mission is well to amplify cleanly the signal and not introduce distoration. The frequency response curve generated at the output should be as close to the original signal as possible (hence clean). Moreover, the amp should be handle the power/current loads of whatever impedance its given which can vary greatly with headphones.

I'm not sure why some people seem to get the impression that a SS amplifier is going to revolutionize their sound. I don't think that's the right idea going into it. What it can do though is bring a new level of detail not heard before. Typically when comparing two amps, IMO, I find that some of the higher-end amps are able to bring the various subtleties in music to the forefront - before various side effects were missing, e.g. bass is better extended, background harmonics are more well integrated and defined (especially classical and jazz where in some instances you have simultaneous themes going on), instrument separation is better, and the mid-hi, hi range is extremely crisp (you actually hear the vibrations), etc.

Maybe all of this together is "dramactic" but it takes many listening sessions to appreciate the difference!
rs1smile.gif


Trogdor
 
Oct 23, 2005 at 3:21 PM Post #33 of 42

tortie

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Quote:

Originally Posted by chesebert
OK..here how it went:

source change from AV710 to Eastsound: HOLY #@$@#$ AWSOME ...
Power supply change from ELPAC to Rockhopper STEPS: WOW..NICE improvement.
Interconnet change from Straight wire to Gold raincoat clone: HOLY #@$#@ a wire can do all that?
Headphone cable change from stock HD600 to stock HD650: hmm...minor improvement....but $15..what the heck
amp change from Pimeta to PPA (keeping everything else constant): I know I am suppose to hear a difference....PPA was warmer (637/627)..but Pimeta is so clean, and bass is just as deep and boy the soundstage is just awsome...am I missing a switch on the PPA somewhere cuz PPA sound just as good as pimeta...
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Its most likely that your pimeta is already a good amp and further upgrading to more expensive ones would only cause very minimal difference. I had the same reaction when upgrading from my Emmiline XP-7 to my Headroom MOH. Congrats, at least you wont be upgrading your amp for a long time.
 
Oct 23, 2005 at 3:29 PM Post #34 of 42

chesebert

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Trogdor
Comparing SS v. Tube is apples and oranges: Tubes sound dramactically different due to the various second harmonic distortions (i.e. fuzz) different tubes create. Perhaps one could compare Tube vs. Tube with the same tubes in order to understand how well the fuzz is actually conveyed.
evil_smiley.gif


I think tyre is actually very close to the truth minus the frequency response. I think that's what your paying for in the end when it comes to SS. I find that in general, the differences in SS amps are NEVER dramactic. Let me qualify that statement some more, in terms of dramactic, its not like listening to a pair of Grado's and then switching to Senn's. That's dramactic to me. I don't find those nigh and day differences when comparing two well designed SS amplifiers (and there are many).

In general, an amp's mission is well to amplify cleanly the signal and not introduce distoration. The frequency response curve generated at the output should be as close to the original signal as possible (hence clean). Moreover, the amp should be handle the power/current loads of whatever impedance its given which can vary greatly with headphones.

I'm not sure why some people seem to get the impression that a SS amplifier is going to revolutionize their sound. I don't think that's the right idea going into it. What it can do though is bring a new level of detail not heard before. Typically when comparing two amps, IMO, I find that some of the higher-end amps are able to bring the various subtleties in music to the forefront - before various side effects were missing, e.g. bass is better extended, background harmonics are more well integrated and defined (especially classical and jazz where in some instances you have simultaneous themes going on), instrument separation is better, and the mid-hi, hi range is extremely crisp (you actually hear the vibrations), etc.

Maybe all of this together is "dramactic" but it takes many listening sessions to appreciate the difference!
rs1smile.gif


Trogdor



I second that! and to the person with interconnect suggestion, I have good ones...everything you know about good interconnect, I can hear those in mine. which is why I am suprised Pimeta sound so good with steps and good interconnect. And putting 8620 into overdrive ..with 26V really makes the opamp sing! I can now fully appreciate diminished return...really diminished this time
frown.gif


I really think people with 8610/20 should try put in maximum volt opamp will take...around 26-27V it makes a decent difference for me going from 2 9V battery to 26.5V STEPS output.
 
Oct 23, 2005 at 3:57 PM Post #35 of 42

fewtch

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Quote:

Originally Posted by chesebert
I really think people with 8610/20 should try put in maximum volt opamp will take...around 26-27V it makes a decent difference for me going from 2 9V battery to 26.5V STEPS output.


Funny... I find the AD8610/20 doesn't seem to respond much sonically to increased voltage. To my ears, there's hardly any difference in sound between my Home-Vibe running at 24v and Go-Vibe at 9v (same opamp, AD8620). These are simple unbuffered amps, so the opamp plays the major part.

What kind of sonic improvement(s) do you notice at the higher voltage?
 
Oct 23, 2005 at 4:00 PM Post #36 of 42

chesebert

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Quote:

Originally Posted by fewtch
Funny... I find the AD8610/20 doesn't seem to respond much sonically to increased voltage. To my ears, there's hardly any difference in sound between my Home-Vibe running at 24v and Go-Vibe at 9v (same opamp, AD8620). These are simple unbuffered amps, so the opamp plays the major part.


Pimeta are buffered and I have double stacked...so the increase voltage could effect buffer stage in a positive way as well.
 
Oct 23, 2005 at 6:46 PM Post #37 of 42

gpalmer

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Trogdor
I'm not sure why some people seem to get the impression that a SS amplifier is going to revolutionize their sound. I don't think that's the right idea going into it. What it can do though is bring a new level of detail not heard before. Typically when comparing two amps, IMO, I find that some of the higher-end amps are able to bring the various subtleties in music to the forefront - before various side effects were missing, e.g. bass is better extended, background harmonics are more well integrated and defined (especially classical and jazz where in some instances you have simultaneous themes going on), instrument separation is better, and the mid-hi, hi range is extremely crisp (you actually hear the vibrations), etc.

Maybe all of this together is "dramactic" but it takes many listening sessions to appreciate the difference!
rs1smile.gif



While I'd generally agree with the thrust of your comments, I think it does not take many listening sessions to appreciate the difference when you're stepping down in quality. When you are hearing a better amplifier for the first time, it is hard to appreciate what it is doing. This is because a lot of the sins the lower end amps are committing are sins of omission rather than commission. Frequency response will tend to be very similar but where the differences are is in keeping musical events well defined. Yup, that $39 amp may have a frequency response very similar to a more pricy amplifier but when the piano and cello are playing at the same time, it ain't gonna keep 'em seperate. When you step up the ladder and the notes are well defined for the first time it isn't as noticeable but when you step down the ladder and all of a sudden those notes aren't defined, it really sticks out like a sore thumb...
 
Oct 23, 2005 at 7:18 PM Post #38 of 42

Trogdor

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Quote:

Originally Posted by gpalmer
While I'd generally agree with the thrust of your comments, I think it does not take many listening sessions to appreciate the difference when you're stepping down in quality. When you are hearing a better amplifier for the first time, it is hard to appreciate what it is doing. This is because a lot of the sins the lower end amps are committing are sins of omission rather than commission. Frequency response will tend to be very similar but where the differences are is in keeping musical events well defined. Yup, that $39 amp may have a frequency response very similar to a more pricy amplifier but when the piano and cello are playing at the same time, it ain't gonna keep 'em seperate. When you step up the ladder and the notes are well defined for the first time it isn't as noticeable but when you step down the ladder and all of a sudden those notes aren't defined, it really sticks out like a sore thumb...


100% agree!
rs1smile.gif


My thoughts were aligned with the original post which seemed to allude to the fact that upgrading caused no change or no significant change. Again, gpalmer, I totally agree with you that going down in amplification is easier to verify, especially if your ear has gotten accustomed to the sound of the various nuisances that occur with high-quality amplification.

However, I still think its hard at a meet to really judge amps critically if you only get half hour with one. I think you can probably get a lot of initial impressions...but that's about it...

Finally, the point of diminishing returns, especially amplifiers, hits very fast. In the under 1K club of SS amps, it will be very hard to distinguish many of them from one another. As an example, I had a hard time of telling the different between Ray Samuel's little Hornet for $300 and his HR-2 (I think?) for $875.

Trogdor

PS So does Ray!
rs1smile.gif
 
Oct 23, 2005 at 10:16 PM Post #39 of 42

sbulack

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Quote:

Originally Posted by chesebert
... PPA was warmer (637/627)..but Pimeta is so clean ...


I've got a few thoughts on this comparison:

0) Pimeta stands for Ppa-Inspired META, so the Pimeta borrows from the PPA in its design. With the clean power support you've given the Pimeta with the STEPPS PS, it's not too terribly surprising that it sounds so good.

1) I've got a PPA, and it needs a good 150-200 hours of use to allow its soundstage to blossom and its sound to clarify. You need to give the PPA, say, 200 hours of use before critically comparing it to the Pimeta.

2) The PPA comes with four buffers per channel. If the Pimeta has fewer buffers per channel, that may help explain some of why it sounds cleaner.
In comparisons between my PPA (with standard integrated buffers) and a Go-Vibe or Classic (both bufferless amps), the Go-Vibe or Classic always won in the crystal-clarity and visceral texture attributes. This is no longer true since I've replaced the integrated buffers with the Larocco Dyno-Biased Discrete buffer to the PPA. So, if the Pimeta has fewer than four buffers per channel, that may help to explain some of why it sound so much cleaner than the PPA. If the Pimeta also has four stacked buffers per channel, then go back to 1). If the Pimeta has fewer buffer per channel than the PPA, then you may always prefer its clarity/texture over the PPA with standard integrated buffers. If your new PPA already HAS discrete buffering, then, again, go back to 1).

3) There's also an adjustment period for your ear to get atuned to the new sound of the PPA (it's currently well tuned to the Pimeta). About 100 hours of listening is what an average ear needs to fully adjust to a new sound, and to hear it for all that it is.

If, after 200 hours of use (where the PPA has blossomed and your ear has adjusted), the PPA does not sound noticably better to you than the Pimeta, then I'm with the others who have suggested that you sell the PPA and enjoy the Pimeta. I, for one, am blessed with a palate which actually and honestly enjoys $10 per bottle wines better than $30 - $100 per bottle wines. Which is a good thing, because I used the money I saved on wine to fund the PPA with Larocco Discrete buffer
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You may be blessed with an audio palate which finds its greatest pleasure from less expensive gear. But, you can come to that conclusion after the PPA and your ear are given the run and listen times they need in order for you to make a good comparrison. That's just my suggestion. As always, you do what suits you best.
 
Oct 23, 2005 at 10:26 PM Post #40 of 42

drarthurwells

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Quote:

Originally Posted by K2Grey
He is of course referring to his Bada PH12 amp which he claims is the best amp there is, although whether he has had success with promoting it is somewhat doubtful.


I've had no success in getting anyone to compare the Bada PH12 to whatever they bring on, in either of two cities (Gainesville and Apopka) in Florida, to prove the bada is the best.
 
Oct 23, 2005 at 10:32 PM Post #41 of 42

Solude

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I think its mostly because the RudiStor RP5.1 is also a hybrid, has had more exposure, looks better and is easily found. The Bada looks ok without its cage but otherwise esh
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Oct 23, 2005 at 10:52 PM Post #42 of 42

drarthurwells

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Solude
I think its mostly because the RudiStor RP5.1 is also a hybrid, has had more exposure, looks better and is easily found. The Bada looks ok without its cage but otherwise esh
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Sounds like many women I have known.

I am really sold on hybrid sound.

I wouldn't fall in love with the Bada though, even with its cage off:


BadaAlex3.jpg
 

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