Headamp Blue Hawaii Special Edition
Apr 20, 2021 at 6:38 PM Post #9,631 of 9,664

Chefguru

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Oct 1, 2003
Posts
1,806
Likes
113
Considering that I would prefer to possess only one electrostatic amplifier, I believe that the KGST possibly would be the amplifier that would be the most suitable model for me, considering that you feel that the sound for the KGST would be in between the sound for the Blue Hawaii Special Edition, and the sound for the Megatron.

However, I previously had seen that people had considered the KGST to be within a tier of performance below the Blue Hawaii Special Edition, and the Megatron.

Would you possibly feel that that would be the case?
KGST is essentially a mini-BHSE, but as Paradoxper mentioned, the KGST uses the 6S4A to handle output directly, but otherwise the constant current source is the same. This gives it a little bit more of a tube-like sound. That said I found it to be very dynamic and would not label it at warm.
The BHSE is a superior amplifier but the KGST is the best value on the market for a Sr009S or Sr009.
 
Apr 20, 2021 at 8:01 PM Post #9,632 of 9,664

paradoxper

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Mar 10, 2012
Posts
8,835
Likes
3,842
Considering that I would prefer to possess only one electrostatic amplifier, I believe that the KGST possibly would be the amplifier that would be the most suitable model for me, considering that you feel that the sound for the KGST would be in between the sound for the Blue Hawaii Special Edition, and the sound for the Megatron.

However, I previously had seen that people had considered the KGST to be within a tier of performance below the Blue Hawaii Special Edition, and the Megatron.

Would you possibly feel that that would be the case?
Flying blind! I'd likely shoot for a 450V Sanyo KGSSHV. I preferred its sound more to a BHSE and a leg up from a KGST.
Compounded with a penchant for the 009 over the 007 regardless of levels of amplification.

Those are my preferences.

I may speculate your preference would lean to Megatron if wanting to make little concessions.
 
Apr 20, 2021 at 8:04 PM Post #9,633 of 9,664

buzzlulu

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Nov 27, 2003
Posts
1,644
Likes
564
If I may interject
I have always been biased towards solid state with my 2 channel system (primary mode of listening) and when it came time to embark upon Stax ended up with a Birgir Carbon as my main amplifier (due to my reticence to try tubes). I am now tempted to try a tube amplifier and do not like lateral changes/upgrades. I am thinking about a BHSE and want something at least on the same level of performance as my Carbon. I am trying to figure out if the BHSE is different enough from my Carbon - or if I need to investigate other Dr. KG tube amplifiers. Current headphones are L300LE 80th, SR-404 Limited 30th, and SR-009S. Being a Naim 2 channel user PRAT is fundamental - laid back, syrupy and warm are not.
 
Apr 20, 2021 at 8:49 PM Post #9,634 of 9,664

paradoxper

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Mar 10, 2012
Posts
8,835
Likes
3,842
If I may interject
I have always been biased towards solid state with my 2 channel system (primary mode of listening) and when it came time to embark upon Stax ended up with a Birgir Carbon as my main amplifier (due to my reticence to try tubes). I am now tempted to try a tube amplifier and do not like lateral changes/upgrades. I am thinking about a BHSE and want something at least on the same level of performance as my Carbon. I am trying to figure out if the BHSE is different enough from my Carbon - or if I need to investigate other Dr. KG tube amplifiers. Current headphones are L300LE 80th, SR-404 Limited 30th, and SR-009S. Being a Naim 2 channel user PRAT is fundamental - laid back, syrupy and warm are not.
Others need to share their preference, experience and advice.

It needs to be emphasized that the language of contextual contrast is EVERYTHING.

Kevin Gilmore doesn't really have an ear for laid back, syrupy, warm amplification design.

Best to reference the convoluted and arbitrary philosophy of NEUTRAL.
 
Apr 21, 2021 at 12:17 PM Post #9,635 of 9,664

Tarttett

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 15, 2019
Posts
359
Likes
103
Location
UK
KGST is essentially a mini-BHSE, but as Paradoxper mentioned, the KGST uses the 6S4A to handle output directly, but otherwise the constant current source is the same. This gives it a little bit more of a tube-like sound. That said I found it to be very dynamic and would not label it at warm.
The BHSE is a superior amplifier but the KGST is the best value on the market for a Sr009S or Sr009.
Thank you for sharing that impression, regarding the sound performance, and regarding the value, for the KGST, in comparison to the Blue Hawaii Special Edition.

Would you possibly possess any experience for listening to a Megatron?
 
Apr 21, 2021 at 12:19 PM Post #9,636 of 9,664

Tarttett

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 15, 2019
Posts
359
Likes
103
Location
UK
Flying blind! I'd likely shoot for a 450V Sanyo KGSSHV. I preferred its sound more to a BHSE and a leg up from a KGST.
Compounded with a penchant for the 009 over the 007 regardless of levels of amplification.

Those are my preferences.

I may speculate your preference would lean to Megatron if wanting to make little concessions.
That is interesting for me that you had preferred the sound performance for that KGSSHV, in comparison to the sound performance for the Blue Hawaii Special Edition.

Would you possibly be able to describe the reasons for why you had possessed that preference?
 
Apr 21, 2021 at 1:06 PM Post #9,637 of 9,664

paradoxper

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Mar 10, 2012
Posts
8,835
Likes
3,842
That is interesting for me that you had preferred the sound performance for that KGSSHV, in comparison to the sound performance for the Blue Hawaii Special Edition.

Would you possibly be able to describe the reasons for why you had possessed that preference?
I've already provided thoughts on the BHSE being more edged in sound and a predilection for the 009 makes for a better 'synergy' with KGSSHV.
You should have asked, "why not the Carbon?" :wink: :laughing:

Let other people fill in your gaps.
 
Apr 21, 2021 at 4:02 PM Post #9,638 of 9,664

Chefguru

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Oct 1, 2003
Posts
1,806
Likes
113
Thank you for sharing that impression, regarding the sound performance, and regarding the value, for the KGST, in comparison to the Blue Hawaii Special Edition.

Would you possibly possess any experience for listening to a Megatron?

Tarttett, I have not heard a Megatron. Only a BHSE and KGST. I don't think the differences we're talking about are as big as some people make them out to be and the hierarchy of it is pretty linear given they're all Kevin Gilmore designs in one way or another.

* KGST and KGSSHV are excellent value amps that are well beyond the Stax offering for essentially the same price or cheaper. (KGST seems to be preferred by Sr009 owners and the KGSSHV for Sr007)

* BHSE and Carbon are a click above with the BHSE having less power but a tad more "musical sound". The Carbon is solid state which presents its own advantages and is mostly considered the better pick for the Sr007 with the Sr009 said to be slightly better on the BHSE. Sr009S is a toss up.

* Megatron is a very rare item, and most impressions say it's in the same family of tier with the BHSE/Carbon with a more tube-like sound. Downside is massive heat output.

* KG's DIY T2 is the undisputed best amp of the lot but is exceedingly expensive, and has very long wait times. There is also risk with hiring a builder who doesn't deliver given no true commercial offering is possible.
 
Last edited:
Apr 22, 2021 at 5:04 PM Post #9,640 of 9,664

Tarttett

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 15, 2019
Posts
359
Likes
103
Location
UK
Tarttett, I have not heard a Megatron. Only a BHSE and KGST. I don't think the differences we're talking about are as big as some people make them out to be and the hierarchy of it is pretty linear given they're all Kevin Gilmore designs in one way or another.

* KGST and KGSSHV are excellent value amps that are well beyond the Stax offering for essentially the same price or cheaper. (KGST seems to be preferred by Sr009 owners and the KGSSHV for Sr007)

* BHSE and Carbon are a click above with the BHSE having less power but a tad more "musical sound". The Carbon is solid state which presents its own advantages and is mostly considered the better pick for the Sr007 with the Sr009 said to be slightly better on the BHSE. Sr009S is a toss up.

* Megatron is a very rare item, and most impressions say it's in the same family of tier with the BHSE/Carbon with a more tube-like sound. Downside is massive heat output.

* KG's DIY T2 is the undisputed best amp of the lot but is exceedingly expensive, and has very long wait times. There is also risk with hiring a builder who doesn't deliver given no true commercial offering is possible.
Thank you for sharing all of that information for me.

Although I now possess a better understanding for the sound performance, and for the value, and for the practicalities of ownership, for those amplifiers, I am not certain that I feel that much more certain regarding which amplifier I most would prefer to possess.
 
Apr 22, 2021 at 8:34 PM Post #9,641 of 9,664

number1sixerfan

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Nov 26, 2004
Posts
3,213
Likes
1,208
Location
Cali
Thank you for sharing all of that information for me.

Although I now possess a better understanding for the sound performance, and for the value, and for the practicalities of ownership, for those amplifiers, I am not certain that I feel that much more certain regarding which amplifier I most would prefer to possess.

The only real option is to narrow down to one or two that you like and try to hear them both, or buy them both and sale what you don't prefer. At the end of the day, preferences play such a huge role and are rarely communicated on here as people provide impressions.. so it makes auditioning that much more important.

And if the above isn't possible, just buy one of the top amps considered solid with the best info you have. Can always sell and move on to something else :)
 
Apr 23, 2021 at 12:38 PM Post #9,642 of 9,664

Tarttett

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 15, 2019
Posts
359
Likes
103
Location
UK
The only real option is to narrow down to one or two that you like and try to hear them both, or buy them both and sale what you don't prefer. At the end of the day, preferences play such a huge role and are rarely communicated on here as people provide impressions.. so it makes auditioning that much more important.

And if the above isn't possible, just buy one of the top amps considered solid with the best info you have. Can always sell and move on to something else :)
A problem that is occurring for me would be that I believe that I possibly would possess a preference for the sound performance for the Megatron, but that the Megatron probably would be the amplifier that would be the least practical for me to utilise, in comparison to all of the other amplifiers.
 
Apr 23, 2021 at 6:03 PM Post #9,643 of 9,664

bmichels

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Sep 11, 2012
Posts
6,100
Likes
2,382
Location
France, Belgium and Morocco
Last edited:
Apr 23, 2021 at 6:40 PM Post #9,644 of 9,664

JLoud

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Aug 31, 2016
Posts
1,608
Likes
2,119
Location
Michigan
I was wondering about that myself. Of course if they don’t release it I don’t have to worry about how to afford it. 🤪
 
May 3, 2021 at 7:28 PM Post #9,645 of 9,664

number1sixerfan

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Nov 26, 2004
Posts
3,213
Likes
1,208
Location
Cali
Unfortunately, my BHSE went out of commission this weekend. Had been running like a champ the entire time I've had it prior to this. It won't turn on, and I'm hoping/assuming it's just a fuse issue? Should I start there? Also, I have no experience opening and working on amps, not even in the slightest... I've built a few computers but even that was long, long ago.

What would be the best thing to do here? I'd hate to sent it back to headamp if not needed. Really kicking myself here, as I JUST sold my Woo Wes Amp two weeks ago, definitely regretting that right now. Any help would be appreciated. (also, I'll obviously email Headamp as well)
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top