Best amp for HD-600's? (~$500)
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Gmd

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Hi, I'm new here and I am about to order a pair of HD-600's from headroom and I was wondering what do you think is the best amp to power these? I am looking at a Solid State amp even though I have heard that tubes do sound better in some cases and I am looking at spending around $500 but that price is flexible. So far I was thinking about either the Headroom litte w/ more power, the Creek OBH-11SE, or the Grado RA-1 (due to its clean DC power source). I will be connecting this amp to my Marantz CD5000 using Outlaw interconnects.
 
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kelly

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Under $500 options I would consider:
META42 (DIY/kit/assembled from someone on HeadFi)
Corda HA-1 from Meier-Audio
ASL MG Head OTL from Headroom

For the HD600, I would definitely not consider:
Headroom Little
Grado RA-1
Creek OBH11

For a few dollars more, the Berning microZOTL, Sugden Headmaster, AudioValve RKV and used Melos SHA-1 all become options. This seems to be a sweet spot, so it's something to consider.
 
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Driftwood

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I agree with kelly. Haven't heard it myself, but the RKV really seems like something you should consider. Substantial increase in performance over the amps you were considering for just a little more.

Driftwood
 
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DeanA

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Quote:

Originally posted by Driftwood
I agree with kelly. Haven't heard it myself, but the RKV really seems like something you should consider. Substantial increase in performance over the amps you were considering for just a little more.


I thought the RKV had a list price of $1300. Are saying Meir's discount brings the price near the $500 GMD is willing to invest?
 
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Gmd

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How well does the Wheatfield HA-1 power the HD-600's? I see Headroom is selling it for $529
 
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Nezer

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Quote:

Originally posted by Gmd
How well does the Wheatfield HA-1 power the HD-600's? I see Headroom is selling it for $529


It does a respectable job if I recall correctly.
 
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For just a few dollars more the Cosmic is a very good amp. I would throw it into the mix of those you are considering.

One thing to remember about tube amps is that from what I have seen here few owners are satisfied for long with the stock set of tubes. They soon embark on tuberolling adventures. Depending how much the bug bites you it can definately increase your total cost of ownership.
 
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kelly

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Quote:

Originally posted by john_jcb
For just a few dollars more the Cosmic is a very good amp. I would throw it into the mix of those you are considering.

One thing to remember about tube amps is that from what I have seen here few owners are satisfied for long with the stock set of tubes. They soon embark on tuberolling adventures. Depending how much the bug bites you it can definately increase your total cost of ownership.


John
Do you really consider this a negative thing? If you like the sound of one amp with its stock set of tubes better than the sound of a solid state amp, aren't you already ahead of the game even if you never tuberoll? And if you do, hopefully you'll get more value for your dollar, not less.

The only negative here would be if you consider tube life, which is actually very long with headphone amplifiers in general and isn't too great of a concern.
 
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Nick Dangerous

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DeanA: Jan's offer is so good it would be insane not to take advantage of it. If I didn't have so much money tied up in the Oris 200 Project, I'd be buying one right now. Make that two.
 
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steinie

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I don't see the RKV listed on Jan's web site. Is Meier Audio really selling them?
 
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Vitalstatistix

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Quote:

Originally posted by steinie
I don't see the RKV listed on Jan's web site. Is Meier Audio really selling them?


Yuppers. Checkout the Mall-Fi section.
 
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tone

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can you post a link i can't seem to find the rkv or the mall-fi link on jan's site.
 
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kelly

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Quote:

Originally posted by tone
can you post a link i can't seem to find the rkv or the mall-fi link on jan's site.


The Mall-Fi section is here on HeadFi.


Email Jan for more info on the RKV.
 
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Quote:

Originally posted by kelly

John
Do you really consider this a negative thing? If you like the sound of one amp with its stock set of tubes better than the sound of a solid state amp, aren't you already ahead of the game even if you never tuberoll? And if you do, hopefully you'll get more value for your dollar, not less.


Kelly,

It is only a negative if you do not have the money to spend. When I want to upgrade and do not have the funds immediately available it can be stressfull. If you like the tubes supplied with the unit you are better off as you say. My comment was made only to inform someone that has never owned tube equipment of an additional cost that they may find down the road.

Perhaps it is my personality as well. For example, I bought a very expensive Kitchen Aid mixer a few years ago. On its own it is a wonderful thing for bread, cakes etc. When you read the instructions you see that they also sell a number of attachments that add to the usefulness of the mixer. Well I wasn't happy till I had them. My total cost of ownership just went up a couple of hundred dollars. I am afraid I would be the same with tubes. The thought that some Russian tube would improve the sound would haunt me till I bought it. Not a bad thing just a cost that I did not count on when I made the purchase.
 
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