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Bottlehead Amplifier Discussion / Comparison Thread: Crack, SEX & Mainline

Discussion in 'Headphone Amps (full-size)' started by loquah, Sep 24, 2013.
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  1. dmhenley
    I've posted more photos and impressions here: http://thenewold.co/
  2. punit
    Not it the software uses dithered volume control (as per my knowledge).
  3. dmhenley
    I decided to install an Alps Blue pot to improve low level tracking, but got even more in the bargain.
    This pot allows me much more play in volume with my Q701's - where now 9:00 is comfortable, I couldn't go above 7:00 with the stock pot - on modern recordings.
    It was inexpensive and easy to install. Sounds great, and tracking improved too.
  4. Loquah
    Excellent! Was is a straight fit with no drilling?
  5. dmhenley
    Yep, no drilling - though I had to file the keyhole slot slightly to fit.
  6. wahsmoh
    I bought a BH Crack preowned and have an HD600 on the way. Can someone butter me up and tell me this is going to be a very good sounding setup? :D I built it for my dad and I currently use the Alpha Dogs with Asgard 2 and old R2R Theta DAC (killer frankenstein combination)
    My goal is to create and end-game headphone rig for my dad which consists of EAD CD-1000 Series III (2x PCM63P-k, PMD100 HDCD filter/decoder) + BH Crack + HD600. Will the Bottlehead Crack sound good with a high quality R2R DAC source? Or does it have a smoothing sound over delta-sigma DACs which tend to sound harsher?
    I will experiment when it comes in but it has been a toss-up on whether to give my dad the Bifrost Uber or the rare EAD CD-1000 series III. In the end what it comes down to is what sounds better to his ears (or my own) and if he prefers a desktop versus CD-based listening setup.
  7. Loquah
    The Crack + HD600 combo is excellent. As you said, a lot of it will come down to his personal tastes, but also which tubes are being used. The Crack will always sound a little "tubey", but can be smooth and warm or quite bright and crisp depending on the tubes.
  8. Garbana
    I successfully built my S.E.X without any error. Silent background & sound great with my HD650. I love it .... I think next step should get an audiophile power cable for it... :D
  9. JamieMcC
    Congratulations I remember being thrilled when my Sex amp was first powered up
  10. Garbana
    Thanks ... I am very happy when finish everything without any error. Because I don't have any soldering experience and this is a good chances for me to learn "how to DIY an amplifier". :D
  11. wahsmoh
    http://www.usedcables.com/ is a good site if you are looking for an audiophile power cable but aren't sure about the price. I bought a DH Labs power plus cable which is supposed to be a very good cable for significantly less than new. It made a difference, mostly in the bass and weight to the music. I use it with my Asgard 2 but I might switch it and try it for the BH Crack when it arrives.
    Garbana likes this.
  12. masterfuu
    hi guys, I hope someone here will be able to help. I have Bottlehead crack...great amp love it but there is small issue I noticed.
    When i listen to my Beyer T1 I start hearing slight tube ringing from the 12au7..... its like very small but noticeable pitch which seems to come and go. From super small pitch to slightly louder and again to super light pitch. Only noticeable when I have my headphone on my head and no music is playing.
    So when I slightly tap on the tube the pitch goes away for 10minutes or so. Then today I noticed something incredible. When I don't listen to any music but have headphone on my head for few min the ringing is not there at all.   So I tapped the headphone cable few times and guess what? The slight ringing started coming back. .. aka slight tube vibrations.
    So as somewhat of a tube noob what can I do to reduce the tube ringing? Its like I said extremely hard to hear and not a huge deal but I would be even happier if there was no tube noise at all.
  13. Loquah
    You could try a tube damping device. You can buy these online, but I have also seen normal rubber o-rings used (I don't know how effective they are). I wonder if installing an o-ring / flexible washer between the HP jack washer and the Crack chassis plate would help isolate the amp from vibrations caused by HP cable movement?
  14. dmhenley
    Rewired the S.E.X. for 4ohms. About 30 hours in on the Nighthawk sessions, and it's a perfect match for me and my system.
    Trying to avoid hyperbole and grand statements here...really jazzed.
    Considering Jupiter caps for my future upgrade - anyone care to share experience with these?
    Thinking about the HT round caps to replace the parafeed caps.
  15. JamieMcC
    I fitted some Jupiter HTs they replaced some Mundorf Supreme Silver Oils. The Jupiters are superb very even handed and natural sounding with nice density of tone. The Mundorfs on the other hand are also truly excellent I thought their presentation gave a more U shape frequency response. This slightly emphasised the sparkle and shimmer of details of the top end and increased texturing in the bass giving more gravel to deep male vocals. This effect made the mids feel slightly recessed imho with the Mundorfs. When it comes to soundstage separation and pinpoint accuracy the Mundorf SIO are really just awesome in the Sex the Jupitors are good but the Mundorfs really shine here.
    The Mundorfs are most definitely a more fun sounding and engaging cap and the Jupitors the more neutral and natural sounding for tone, timbre of instruments.
    Personally I like the Jupitors immensely I picked one up used for £9 and the other new for £60 would I pay £120 if doing it again for two new ones well the answer would probably be a no even though they are just superb and I love what they do.
    The two Mundorfs SIO I purchased new for £80 for the pair and I agonised for some time before buying them. Would I buy them again new well yes absolutely without hesitation the improvements they gave over regular films was easily noticeable.
    Both superb options but diminishing returns are at play.
    I also ran some Amphom tin foils in oil in the Sex which I enjoyed immensely with their saturated tone a nice upgrade from stock films but hard to find now they have gone out of production and not in the same league as the Jupitors and Mundorfs SIO. 
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