Massdrop x THX AAA™ 789 Linear Amplifier - Impressions Thread
Nov 13, 2018 at 6:16 PM Post #256 of 2,404

Nosaj1969

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I'm pretty sure this is currently the best measuring dedicated amp I know of. AudioGD I 'hear' is a syrupy-warm signature. Subjectively, who knows.. That is up to you to decide. At this price the performance is off the charts. I doubt this 1day ship drop will last very long.
Agreed. The Audio-gd is great, but different and as you say it's always subjective. Also agree that I think you are going to be hard pressed at this price point for a better amp out there fully balanced, and that's just after only a brief period of listening to it.
 
Nov 13, 2018 at 6:20 PM Post #257 of 2,404

alphanumerix1

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I'm planning to spend some extended time with it this weekend, but my initial impression is that I like it about as much as I do my Audio-gd. The Audio-gd is great, but I have a problem with it and my Focal Elex for some reason, and i've only listened to the 789 with the Elex so far. One of the main reasons I bought the other Massdrop amps as well as the THX AAA 789. I think the THX AAA 789 has much greater transparency than the Cavalli's, is less veiled and more resolving. Also seems to have more punch. At this price point, there isn't anything I think is better that I've heard. It's a beast. I love the Elex paired with all three of the Massdrop amps, but this one is certainly special.

I also received a pair of the closed back Focal Elegia's today (Can't wait to see them!) to try out for a week as part of the loaner program @TTVJAudio is hosting. Should be a better headphone to do a direct comparison with my Mr. Speakers Aeon Flow Closed on the NFB-1 so long as I don't get the distortion like I do on the Elex. Either way, I plan to give both a direct comparison using multiple DACs and headphones, and I'll post the impressions here after the week with the Elegia's is up!

Strange from my listen (albeit brief) I didnt notice distortion with the elex and nfb1. Look forward to some detailed impressions of the 789 vs nfb1 etc
 
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Nov 13, 2018 at 6:23 PM Post #258 of 2,404

BrokeSkoolBoi

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How is the single-ended vs the XLR? I've read that LCX Single ended is quite inferior to it's XLR output (balanced or unbalanced). I'm not buying an XLR for all my headphones, so does anyone think the THX isn't worth using only Single ended?
 
Nov 13, 2018 at 9:47 PM Post #259 of 2,404

Gavin C4

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Does anyone have impression of this amp with Focal Utopia? I wonder does it pairs well.
 
Nov 13, 2018 at 10:06 PM Post #260 of 2,404

Voxata

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How is the single-ended vs the XLR? I've read that LCX Single ended is quite inferior to it's XLR output (balanced or unbalanced). I'm not buying an XLR for all my headphones, so does anyone think the THX isn't worth using only Single ended?

There's measurements out there showing SE and BAL identical in performance on the THX. Cavalli uses an opamp deal or "phase splitter" in fancy talk to bridge SE and BAL. I do not like my LCX using SE in or out. Using full BAL it's the best listening experience I've had while listening at low levels. Will see how the THX fares.

Ref: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...easurements-of-massdrop-thx-aaa-789-amp.5001/

If you look a page or two in the SE is measured.
 
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Nov 13, 2018 at 10:11 PM Post #261 of 2,404

BrokeSkoolBoi

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Nov 14, 2018 at 1:38 AM Post #262 of 2,404

CEE TEE

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Pretty sure they're all new guys. I think they have to specify if they are refurbs or open boxes.

Maybe @CEE TEE can chime in?
Hi heliosphann,
Definitely new units! Not refurbs or open boxes. :)
 
Nov 14, 2018 at 5:33 AM Post #263 of 2,404

BucketInABucket

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Anyone know how this compares to the Project Ember II? Thinking of getting this as a replacement for that.
 
Nov 14, 2018 at 9:57 AM Post #264 of 2,404

Voxata

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These are two very different amps. Depends if you like tube flavor or not. I'm a SS fan so.. this amp looks like a dream come true on paper.
 
Nov 14, 2018 at 10:37 AM Post #265 of 2,404

BucketInABucket

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Hmm, what everyone's saying is they seem to compliment each other so I might just keep the Ember II...
 
Nov 14, 2018 at 11:35 AM Post #266 of 2,404

Voxata

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Hmm, what everyone's saying is they seem to compliment each other so I might just keep the Ember II...

These are two very different amps. I'd be getting the 789 out of the two without any hesitation based on specs alone.
 
Nov 14, 2018 at 12:10 PM Post #267 of 2,404

BucketInABucket

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These are two very different amps. I'd be getting the 789 out of the two without any hesitation based on specs alone.
I already have the Ember from a few years ago, pondering on whether I should sell it or not tbh
 
Nov 14, 2018 at 12:40 PM Post #268 of 2,404

oqvist

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Nov 14, 2018 at 8:12 PM Post #270 of 2,404

smallcaps

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Money is a bit tight, sadly!
If you're going to own only one amp, make it SS. Build a good sounding reference system you can live with, then expand to more esoteric gear like tubes. My vote is to sell the ember, imho.
 

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