iQube vs SR-71 anyone ?
Jul 31, 2008 at 2:30 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 9

musicmaker

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i have an iQube and absolutely love it to pieces. I've also heard great things about the SR-71. I've read some of the amp reviews that talk about these amps but has anyone done a head-to-head comparison of these two ? Any inputs would be appreciated.
 
Jul 31, 2008 at 2:33 AM Post #2 of 9

BigEat

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IMO IQube would be preferred and the class D platform gives it a performance edge as well. As side note, a closer RS call would be the XP-7 which although not entirely portable, is again IMO, a step north of the iQube.
 
Jul 31, 2008 at 3:17 AM Post #3 of 9

FallenAngel

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I liked the iQube, it's a nice little portable, but wasn't overly impressed. The SR71, I really liked as well and think it has some of the best highs of any portable amp, not to mention it drives anything and everything whereas the iQube was struggling with some harder to driver headphones. Nothing about gain, just didn't sound right. Either way, I don't believe that any portable can drive everything, but the SR71 and Lisa-III are as close as it gets to it. Design-wise they're actually a little similar
smily_headphones1.gif
Lisa-III wining out though, 3-channel with bulkier output transistors.

If you're not looking for pure-portable, there's better options.
 
Aug 1, 2008 at 2:36 AM Post #4 of 9

musicmaker

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thanks guys. I'm not too concerned about driving higher impedance cans. I have the triple.fi.10pros and HFI-780 and both are easily driven. I have a SR-71a on order so can't wait to try it once its available and compare to the iQube.

My issue with the Lisa is its size and battery life. I'm sure it sounds fabulous. But its size is not something I want to deal with for portable use.
 
Oct 27, 2008 at 5:36 PM Post #6 of 9

musicmaker

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I wanted to post a mini review but couldn't due to work schedules. I'll try to post a bit more detail (took some notes from my comparison of SR-71A vs iQube). Let me just say while the SR-71A is a nice amp, I prefer the tonal balance and neutrality of the iQube better. I kept the iQube and returned the SR-71A
 
Oct 28, 2008 at 1:43 AM Post #7 of 9

mrarroyo

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I have compared the original SR71 to the iQube. IMO the SR71 was the better sounding unit.

Sadly I sold the SR71 but then I got lucky and bought it back. The SR71 is IMO a superb sounding portable amp.

Ray, is adjusting the gain on the SR71 and I should have it by the 1st of November. Will do a second side by side of the SR71 and the SR71A (last time I used vorlon1's SR71).

Will keep you posted.
 
Oct 28, 2008 at 2:47 AM Post #8 of 9

musicmaker

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Thanks Miguel. I'd be very interested in your comparison of the SR-71 to the SR-71A.

The SR-71A had GREAT bass presence and definition. However I felt the highs lacked the air and extension the iQube has. I would've liked to see better balance between the highs and bass. The midrange was nice.

I am still going to keep an eye out for the original SR-71.

I know the iQube didn't impress you very much. But IMO and to my ears, its one of the best portables I've heard only slightly bettered by the PRII mkII in certain ways. Its hard to pick one over the other, but I digress.
 
Oct 28, 2008 at 7:00 AM Post #9 of 9

monsieurguzel

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I currently have an iQube that i'm still in the process of burning in and I really love it!!! It does a pretty good job at amping my HD650's but I primarily use it with my Shure SE530s, where the iQube really opens up the soundstage and enhances the quality and clarity of bass as well of the highs.

I can't really compare to the SR-71, but I did use to own an XP-7 a little while back. That was also a great amp, and felt a lot more colored than the iQube and not as airy/transparent either. I guess its a matter of preference though...I see the iQube as being a lot more 'reference' than Ray Samuels amps in general. That doesn't mean its better, just a much more neutral headphone amp.
 

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