Massdrop x Eddie Current ZDT Jr. impressions thread
Jul 15, 2018 at 5:50 PM Post #31 of 129

songmic

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@songmic

Hi there,

Looking for a tube amp for my Grado gh2 (32 ohms), do you think Zdt jr will pair better, than for example Valhalla 2, Mad Ear + hd, Woo W2 / W6?
thanks in advance.

Pedro

Overall, the ZDT Jr. is probably the best amp among all the tube amps you listed, although I haven’t heard the Mad Ear + HD. However, for your 32 ohm Grado, I wouldn’t recommend any of the tube amps above.

Most tube amps have a high output Z, which will cause distortion with low Z headphones like your Grado. IIRC, even the low Z output of ZDT Jr. is over 20 ohms. The lowest output Z among those is ironically the OTL Valhalla 2 in low Z mode (which is probably achieved with use of negative feedback), but the Val 2 still sounds better in its high Z mode paired with high Z cans like Sennheisers and it would be a waste of an amp to use with your Grado.

Honestly, although I can’t say I’ve heard the GH2 in particular, most Grado headphones I’ve heard, including the so-called flagship models, sucked. They don’t scale as high as many headphones that are a lot cheaper, and considering their house sound and low impedance, I found them to be a poor match with tube amps in general. I can understand some people may prefer them for rock music (although I would still take a more resolving and neutral can that hits hard), but even so, I don’t see the point in trying to use a tube amp with Grados.

My advice is to buy a better headphone (a good starting point is HD600/650/6XX/58X), but if not, look for a decent solid-state amp with a low output Z.
 
Jul 15, 2018 at 6:05 PM Post #32 of 129

Pedro Janeiro

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Overall, the ZDT Jr. is probably the best amp among all the tube amps you listed, although I haven’t heard the Mad Ear + HD. However, for your 32 ohm Grado, I wouldn’t recommend any of the tube amps above.

Most tube amps have a high output Z, which will cause distortion with low Z headphones like your Grado. IIRC, even the low Z output of ZDT Jr. is over 20 ohms. The lowest output Z among those is ironically the OTL Valhalla 2 in low Z mode (which is probably achieved with use of negative feedback), but the Val 2 still sounds better in its high Z mode paired with high Z cans like Sennheisers and it would be a waste of an amp to use with your Grado.

Honestly, although I can’t say I’ve heard the GH2 in particular, most Grado headphones I’ve heard, including the so-called flagship models, sucked. They don’t scale as high as many headphones that are a lot cheaper, and considering their house sound and low impedance, I found them to be a poor match with tube amps in general. I can understand some people may prefer them for rock music (although I would still take a more resolving and neutral can that hits hard), but even so, I don’t see the point in trying to use a tube amp with Grados.

My advice is to buy a better headphone (a good starting point is HD600/650/6XX/58X), but if not, look for a decent solid-state amp with a low output Z.

Thanks for the advice.
Before i bought this one i tryed some Audeze (Lcd2, 3 and EL8), and all Grados even the flagship model. and to be honest i choosed the one who sound better to me.
After that i tryed it with some amps, like rega ear, emotiva bass x, and later the tube amp Quad pa one.
And i really liked how the grado sound better with the last one, and thats why i looking for alternatives to that Quad.

But back to main question, between those amps that i mention before, whats the best in your opinion? can you make a shortlist ? i need one good for the grado and ready for future headphone purchases.

thanks a lot

Pedro
 
Jul 15, 2018 at 6:19 PM Post #33 of 129

songmic

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Thanks for the advice.
Before i bought this one i tryed some Audeze (Lcd2, 3 and EL8), and all Grados even the flagship model. and to be honest i choosed the one who sound better to me.
After that i tryed it with some amps, like rega ear, emotiva bass x, and later the tube amp Quad pa one.
And i really liked how the grado sound better with the last one, and thats why i looking for alternatives to that Quad.

But back to main question, between those amps that i mention before, whats the best in your opinion? can you make a shortlist ? i need one good for the grado and ready for future headphone purchases.

thanks a lot

Pedro

Like I said, ZDT Jr. is overall the best tube amp among the ones you listed. By best, I mean the most resolving and high-performance in terms of technicalities. But its warm signature and high output Z could be a poor match with your 32-ohm GH2.

Unless you have a good reason to insist on the tube amps you mentioned, looking for a decent solid state amp might be a better option.
 
Jul 15, 2018 at 6:21 PM Post #34 of 129

Pedro Janeiro

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Like I said, ZDT Jr. is overall the best tube amp among the ones you listed. By best, I mean the most resolving and high-performance in terms of technicalities. But its warm signature and high output Z could be a poor match with your 32-ohm GH2.

Unless you have a good reason to insist on the tube amps you mentioned, looking for a decent solid state amp might be a better option.

Ok then, so can you recomend me 2 or 3 good SS amps?
thanks a lot
 
Jul 15, 2018 at 6:31 PM Post #35 of 129

songmic

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Ok then, so can you recomend me 2 or 3 good SS amps?
thanks a lot

Discussing an SS amp for GH-2 would be completely irrelevant and derailing this thread, PM me if you wish to indulge in this topic further.
 
Jul 15, 2018 at 7:38 PM Post #36 of 129

h2rulz

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Thanks for the advice.
Before i bought this one i tryed some Audeze (Lcd2, 3 and EL8), and all Grados even the flagship model. and to be honest i choosed the one who sound better to me.
After that i tryed it with some amps, like rega ear, emotiva bass x, and later the tube amp Quad pa one.
And i really liked how the grado sound better with the last one, and thats why i looking for alternatives to that Quad.

But back to main question, between those amps that i mention before, whats the best in your opinion? can you make a shortlist ? i need one good for the grado and ready for future headphone purchases.

thanks a lot

Pedro

A bit off topic, but just as an FYI, similar to what songmic said, amp and headphone pairing matters. Well, I’m sure you’re aware of this, but don’t dismiss a headphone before paring it properly. E.g. I didn’t like the HD650/6xx until I tried it with the Valhalla 2.
 
Jul 16, 2018 at 6:15 PM Post #37 of 129

Bruc3

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I have a HD6xx, how would this pair compared to say a Bottlehead crack + speedball?

As the crack is currently my top pick for OTL.

Also considering a hybrid the Cavalli Tube MCTH
 
Jul 25, 2018 at 2:46 PM Post #38 of 129

randytsuch

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Massdrop has shipped, received mine on Monday, so I would expect more activity on this thread now.
I just connected my amp last night, not ready to give any impressions yet. And I only have a modded ming da mc66 to compare it to, so my impressions probably wouldn't help anyone anyway lol.

Randy
 
Jul 25, 2018 at 2:56 PM Post #39 of 129

KaiserTK

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I'm surprised how dead this thread has been given how well the reception was for the review models at least.
I also hope Massdrop has some extras in stock so I could snag one (with less waiting time).
 
Jul 26, 2018 at 7:53 AM Post #40 of 129

sheldaze

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Massdrop has shipped, received mine on Monday, so I would expect more activity on this thread now.
I just connected my amp last night, not ready to give any impressions yet. And I only have a modded ming da mc66 to compare it to, so my impressions probably wouldn't help anyone anyway lol.

Randy

The amplifier is very transparent to the source. Where some people may end using something in the same price range, such as a Schiit Modi, in truth a Gungnir or Yggdrasil would actually not be wasted due to the sheer transparency of the amplifier. I think there will be a diverse set of impressions. A few people will actually try more expensive sources, and they will be impressed. A few others will try Modi or Bifrost, and have their sound limited by their source. Having purchased this, I'm in the process to sell a few things for a better source.

I'm surprised how dead this thread has been given how well the reception was for the review models at least.
I also hope Massdrop has some extras in stock so I could snag one (with less waiting time).

First, the posts here from folks such as @songmic have been accurate and to the point. I personally was not feeling the need to add unnecessary noise. Unless there was a specific question, just enjoying the listen.

Second, the only post I saw with a question - well, let's say it has been often interesting to see watch what people do, not what they post. I saw a certain post asking about comparison between the ZDT Jr. and the Black Widow. Then I saw that same person put an item up for sale. That item was not the ZDT Jr. or their Black Widow.
 
Jul 26, 2018 at 10:38 AM Post #41 of 129

randytsuch

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Jul 27, 2018 at 12:48 AM Post #42 of 129

givemetacos

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It seems like a number of people have already received theirs last week or this week. Mine doesn't to appear to have even shipped yet. Anyone else in the drop that hasn't gotten any shipping notifications?
 
Jul 27, 2018 at 10:05 AM Post #43 of 129

JNKM

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It seems like a number of people have already received theirs last week or this week. Mine doesn't to appear to have even shipped yet. Anyone else in the drop that hasn't gotten any shipping notifications?
I haven't gotten any shipping notifications either, though I did join pretty late in the drop, so I figure I'll be among the later batches...

(Btw, just wanted to say thanks for all the impressions and advice you put out there. After a lot of deliberation, I recently pulled the trigger on a used Atticus and couldn't be happier with it and how it's pairing with the Valhalla 2! But as much as I love the Val 2, I just had to get a taste of the Eddie Current house sound, especially at that price point!)
 
Jul 27, 2018 at 12:51 PM Post #45 of 129

randytsuch

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It was $430 with shipping, but the thing is the drop was last fall, and I paid in Nov, 8 months ago.

Drop was for 375 units, but I don't think it sold out, I don't remember how many were actually sold.
I would expect some units to show up for sale in the near future.
 

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