Eddie Current Zana Deux owners
Dec 5, 2015 at 3:37 PM Post #1,937 of 2,587

bazelio

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Hi folks!  A soon to be new member of the ZDS club here.  I put a deposit on a new ZDS a couple weeks ago and am expecting delivery before Christmas (fingers crossed).  I had a short audition already and was immediately smitten with the modern neutral tube sound.  I had to get the all-black version due to unavailability of the standard face plates.  Any feedback on how much sound improvement I should expect with black facias?  :p  Well, it was either that or wait until next year some time, and I'm impatient.  So black it is!!  Weeeee.......
 
PS. I pre-emptively chose a new forum avatar.  :wink:
 
Dec 8, 2015 at 5:24 PM Post #1,938 of 2,587

jzono1

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bigsmile_face.gif

 
There's something about this amp.
 
That intangible "better" thing that I felt like my speakers did that my T1s couldn't match when powered by a Mjolnir... the ZDSE has it. What makes me forget everything else and lean back and enjoy, when I'm in the right mood. 
blink.gif
 
 
Can't wait to hear what happens when I move beyond a silly excuse of a soundcard. Not sure what more I could ask for in a headphone amp. 
 
Dec 8, 2015 at 9:18 PM Post #1,939 of 2,587

bazelio

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bigsmile_face.gif

 
There's something about this amp.
 
That intangible "better" thing that I felt like my speakers did that my T1s couldn't match when powered by a Mjolnir... the ZDSE has it. What makes me forget everything else and lean back and enjoy, when I'm in the right mood. 
blink.gif
 
 
Can't wait to hear what happens when I move beyond a silly excuse of a soundcard. Not sure what more I could ask for in a headphone amp. 

 
 
JCAT?  My next project involves a JCAT, personally.  :)
 
Dec 9, 2015 at 7:42 PM Post #1,941 of 2,587

jzono1

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I don't believe in "better" usb output for audio, it'll always be a compromised way of doing digital audio - and anything done to fix that is usually best done by a well-designed usb input on a dac (or soundcard, for that matter.) The JCAT isn't something I'd even consider. No matter what you throw at it, usb is fundamentally terrible for audio. 
 
I'd look carefully at serious pcie soundcards with good digital outputs before throwing 397.00 € at an usb card. Can get an ESI Juli@ XTe for half that. (I miss my old pci Juli@.)
 
Personally I'm aiming for a Lynx Hilo, with thunderbolt input. But then I'm weird, and I need something with a high quality input, a mixer and more than one pair of outputs.
 
Dec 9, 2015 at 9:20 PM Post #1,942 of 2,587

bazelio

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  I don't believe in "better" usb output for audio, it'll always be a compromised way of doing digital audio - and anything done to fix that is usually best done by a well-designed usb input on a dac (or soundcard, for that matter.) The JCAT isn't something I'd even consider. No matter what you throw at it, usb is fundamentally terrible for audio. 
 
I'd look carefully at serious pcie soundcards with good digital outputs before throwing 397.00 € at an usb card. Can get an ESI Juli@ XTe for half that. (I miss my old pci Juli@.)
 
Personally I'm aiming for a Lynx Hilo, with thunderbolt input. But then I'm weird, and I need something with a high quality input, a mixer and more than one pair of outputs.

 
 
Well I don't agree, or should I say that my ears don't agree.  USB is much less flawed without power and data running in parallel, and one of the advantages of a card like the JCAT is that you can totally disable bus power.  So for (good) USB DACs which don't rely on bus power, this does make a difference.  I recently heard JCAT and SoTM side by side, and could even hear a difference between those.  If I were to try quantifying it, then I would estimate the stock USB port on my Macbook Pro gets about 75% of the way there and then maybe only a 5% difference between those two.  So at that point, yes, kind of small.
 
Dec 14, 2015 at 10:40 PM Post #1,943 of 2,587

bazelio

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Pics or it didn't happen, right?
 
I'll keep this short and sweet for now.  I unboxed this beauty just 30 minutes back, and immediately went to Tidal and dialed up a live performance by my favorite artist of all time.  Within 90 seconds ... quite simply, I was moved to tears.  Right now I'm just having difficulty describing what I'm hearing through this amp.  
 

 
Dec 14, 2015 at 11:07 PM Post #1,946 of 2,587

TomNC

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HD600 is great. I heard one ZDS owner say that the amp sounds somewhat dry when driving HD800. How about imaging? Do you think it is pinpoint precise with ZDS and HD600? I also have this amp on my search for purchase list. Imaging, compatibility with HD800 and power for HE6 are among things I am looking at.
 
Dec 15, 2015 at 12:32 AM Post #1,947 of 2,587

bazelio

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I'm strongly considering the HD800S as an upgrade, next month when it's released.  The HD650 I have heard too, and it is definitely step up from my HD600, but maybe not enough of a step.  Although if I didn't already have the 600, I'd definitely chose the 650 as a new purchase.
 
ZDS: This is a modern neutral/accurate tube sound, not a warmer vintage sound.  It's tight and controlled.  Imaging is precise without being analytical.  The presentation is spacious and layered.  You hear the harmonic subtleties of the instruments and room acoustics.  Truth of timber is an understatement.  A lot of this is also owed to the DAC I'm using as well, and the pairing of the Mojo Audio Mystique V2 with the Zana Deux S is simply fantastic.  If you're ever looking at DACs in the neighborhood of Yggy, I strongly suggest the Mystique as an alternative having now heard both.  I'm thinking I might not get to sleep tonight....  I can't stop listening.  I didn't know my HD600 phones were capable of this, after all this time with them.
 

 
Dec 15, 2015 at 10:02 AM Post #1,948 of 2,587

TomNC

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Good to hear ZDS' imaging capability. Yes. HD600/650 scale well with better DAC/amp. And also consider some mods for your HD600 if you have not done. I am happy with my HD650 with mods. Both good DAC/amp and mods open up the HD600/650 amazingly.
 
Dec 16, 2015 at 5:59 PM Post #1,950 of 2,587

BournePerfect

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Not sure how the new ZDS is, but the old ZDSE took about 150 hours to really sing. Was kinda "meh for the price" OUT OF THE BOX, but came into it's own and became my favorite amp after proper burn in. If the ZDS is similar in that regard-you haven't heard anything yet.
 
-Daniel
 

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