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My messed up posts are pure poetry.
I have experience with the AK 380 as digital toslink source and it sounds markedly better than the usb but that might have more to do with the tidal app. The ak line is the best sounding source I have found (tried Onkyo dp-x1 and Cayan n5i ). I first thought a digital stream should be identical between players offering digital outs but quickly found the AK to be superior which was surprising as the difference isn’t subtle at all to my ears . the tt2 is sensitive to source from my experience. You will be ecstatic...
I gave a fairly detailed description (for me anyways ...) of the differences I have found between tt2 and Hugo 2. In short the highs appear darker than h2 but as you listen it becomes apparent that this has more to do with the resolution as the imaging is outstanding (highs have everything to do with this quality). They are more solid and palpable than h2 but not as forward . It’s a major improvement but takes some getting used to .
I doubt you will want to use a secondary amp . The tt2 is an absolute bruiser in the power category and he resolution and vanishing distortion characteristics are not something most tt2 users are willing to give up for 10% more power . It should lay waste to your senns
Many thanks for the detailed response, this is very informative and thank you for the links to Rob's presentation! At the end of the day, it's really down to the personal listening experience. It took quite a lot of experimentation for me to find a set up where I finally let go of tweaking and sunk into the music. I am very curious about the sound in the HD800S driven directly by TT2 as it has enough power to give it the kick it needs. It will be interesting to compare it to how it sounds when channeled through the Sennheiser amp.
Many thanks for your insight, I appreciate the advice on how to approach the change in the sound signature and not be put off straight away. I really enjoy the spaciousness and clarity of HD800/S and a change to how the treble is reproduced might address some of the sibilance and harshness that I need to filter out on some tracks. The Sennheisers deliver very high amount of detail in the treble so it's possible TT2 will improve it compared to Hugo 2 that could be too bright at times.
As for driving them directly from the TT2, I have no doubt that it's very capable of delivering huge amounts of power, however, the tonality/overall synergy with the HD800/S is equally important to me. I am looking for an emotional connection during the listening experience so it will be interesting how the experience of listening to music with/without the amp in the chain will compare.
I am about to create a playlist of songs to test tomorrow - the ones I enjoy a lot via the Hugo 2 as well as some that might be too sibilant/harsh with my current combo but otherwise songs I really enjoy! Are there any songs you would personally recommend to audition on both where you felt a positive impact of moving from H2 to TT2? btw are there any songs where you felt moving to TT2 was actually detrimental to the experience?
My experience of using Toslink vs. USB is similar to yours (albeit on a Macbook). Toslink connection (to H2 anyway) makes the sound significantly more dynamic than USB. I read somewhere that Rob Watts prefers to use optical connections due to zero interference but I didn't expect the difference to be so dramatic.
I swear - every album really comes alive on tt2 vs h2. Its the organic, meaty, reality, it’s awesome. I’ve had mine for months, so this isn’t just an initial reaction.
Check out Monsanto years, unbelievable electric guitar and lyrics.
Any music that has a rawness to it, really excels, I get the emotional connection with Hd800s.
It just is in another league to h2. Maybe because it drives Hd800s so well rather than it being much better then h2, to give h2 a bit of love. But I’m not convinced, I think it’s both.
further to this: i've never heard my stereo speaker set-up sound so incredible than coming direct from HMS>TT2 (via Roon). as I said before, the most upsetting thing is I cannot use it as my permanent set-up!
Because now the tt2 must give way for a dave??
Surely not, it’s too thin sounding It’s ok if you’re just into opera, but for anything with beats, tt2 is better.
Thanks, I will give it a try! Adding the Sennheiser to H2 is what completely transformed the music for me, the amp is tuned to these headphones so it drives them really well, it gives them body, huge presence. It will be a very interesting comparison - maybe I'll end up selling the amp, too and get the TT2 almost for free
I’m interested to see how it compares to the 820, hopefully your delivery arrives!
I am only demoing it tomorrow morning, I need to be sure before I make the jump