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NEW Vali Schiit AMP!!!

Discussion in 'Headphone Amps (full-size)' started by lff, Oct 9, 2013.
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  1. Mshenay Contributor
    ehh, even with my DT 880 600 ohm I'm only at 9 oClock. A little over 9 actually for the quieter songs. My w1000x sits near 8:30 ish 
    it could be the strength of your iPods line out. I know my HM 801 line out is... well it's a little much for the w1000x imo. Compared to my UAC 202 which requires about 10:30 11:00 with my Pb1 [which is twice as powerful as the Vali] where as the hm801, requires the pb1 to hover no higher than 8
    although when I owned an iPod I found them to be... loud
  2. karlsonklam
    how may it compare to the Indeed hybrid amp? - my cans include HE-300, T50RP (stock), EVO 681  - assume the subminiature tube is not icluded in the feedback loop (?)  - is the Magni better suited for HE-300?
  3. CJ_CoCa
    Thanks, man. I'll try it later today with my computer and the MODI (didn't try it before because I didn't have RCA Cables). Even though I did notice that with just the HE-400 and the iPod I had the volume at Max Level and it sounded kinda "low" while on the iMac about 50% of the volume would be more than enough. The iPod seems to be the "problem".
    thanks again!
  4. Mshenay Contributor
    The Indeed was a noisy joke... check the dt 880 thread. I literally used to have to re balance the Bias pots on my Indeed G3 like every 8 hours of use... if I didn't I'd get serious channel imbalance... I mean the indeed is a great way to learn about tube maintance. Rolling, balancing... OMG don't be so ROUGH with that tube [ing]
    So its a good experince, but for the money the vali sounds better .
    Now that said, if your handy with electronics the Indeed can be a REALLY good deal. As if you can mod it, you can get a nice amount of upgrade onto to it, and you can roll 6 volt and 12 votl tubes! So for the handy DIY guy it's much more versitile. For an idiot like me... the simplicity of the Vali is great.
  5. Transformatron
    I'm getting my Vali today and I feel that it will be perfect for the HE-300s. I'll give some impressions later tonight.
  6. Maxvla Contributor
    CJ, your iPod outputs approximately 1.0-1.2V. Most common unbalanced outputs are 2.0V. I would imagine if you tried another source, that was non-portable, you would have volume around 9 o'clock like the others.
    JoeKickass likes this.
  7. eccom
    I wish there was a way to get unity gain or something like 2x gain. IMO it's excessive but then I don't use orthos, just hd650.

    I play my dac at 50% and the Vali at 9 o clock. I've never even used the 2.5x gain on the O2 - always 1x.
  8. hmorneau
    I use the unbalanced output of my W4S DAC2 (which is 2.6volt) and I listen to it at about 12 oclock (with the T1) and around 2 oclock with the DT880 600ohms.
    I will get some XLR to RCA cable to get my 5,2 volts output and see if it's better. I would not worry too much about it.
    So far after more hours, I like that little Vali, but I think it's a bit too warm to my taste and the bass are a bit too slow and uncontrolled. I guess the damping factor is pretty low on this amp. 
    I don't hear as many details then with the Auditor, but it's a bit easier on the treble. So it's more enjoyable with poorly recorded records.
    After more listening, now think that the T1 is superior to the DT880 on the Vali, but the sound stage is really small and the T1 feel underpowered.
    Basically I'm comparing a $1000 amp to a $119 which is not fair (but it's the only thing I have), so well, it's really nice for the price. 
    I just reconnected my T1 to the auditor and to me the sound is much better (more detailed, faster, clearer, sound stage is bigger, there is more air, the amp feel more powerful and instrument separation is better) but also colder and more analytical which is the price to pay I guess to get that level of details.
    Basically I would recommend more the Vali for the DT880 and the Auditor for the T1.
  9. PJ11
    I'm finally in the Modi>Vali>HD650 camp after receiving my Vali yesterday. I'm still obviously in burn in phase but so far I am pleased. Songs are somewhat hit or miss, a few sound absolutely incredible, amazing separation and clarity, and I've found that it's the lower mids that are really triumphing early on. Bass is punchy and I've yet to hear the real farty bass except on a select few songs that I usually hear it on anyway (NIN Slipping Away). It's definitely not bass-heavy but it's tight and weighty enough. The soundstage is extremely erratic so far, and I've only had that blown away feeling on a select few songs.
    Happy to report next to zero microphonics unless I tap fairly aggressively and then it dissipates almost immediately. 
    There was a poster talking about volume. I'm running with the Audirvana Plus on a macbook and have the Vali knob turned to about 10 O'clock most of the time which is where some songs are just a bit too loud but most are perfect. If I leave it at 9 O'clock I'd say ~70% of songs are too quiet. This has left me adjusting the volume a bit.
    Over all I expect things to improve as I burn it in a bit more but I can already tell there's some good synergy. I'll write a more expansive report at 100 hours.
  10. rreifsn
    I'd like to make another update on my Vali experience since it has been positive in the long run.  I returned my first unit because I had a problem with a strong ringing in my right channel.  The ringing was persistent.  I returned my amp and got a new one which has worked perfectly for over a week.  No harmonics and great sound.  I don't know what to say about all the posts concerning erect tubes but I sent mine back and Schiit sent me a dead cool unit. 
  11. Transformatron
    Got the Modi/Vali setup and warmed up. I have to start off by saying it is a big upgrade from my iPod to cMoy or directly from the iPod. My HE-300 is modded, felt removed and replaced with thinner material (gets rid of the dark sound).

    I've been listening for about 2 hours with the Modi/Vali stack with my HE-300. Everything is clearer and cleaner all around. Bass is the biggest upgrade with the stack, the sub-bass doesn't just give up anymore and the bass is much much tighter. Mids are more or less the same, the little things are the most noticeable change (picks plucking on a guitar, people talking in the background). The whole range has a wet presence as has been said a few times before. Treble change is my least favorite, it just seems thicker and slower. I preferred the thinner treble.

    Now for a shocker, I'm not happy with my HE-300s anymore... I was completely satisfied with them before the stack. I am being completely honest saying that these just dead end and don't scale. I feel like the amp is wanting something better to work with and the HE-300 cannot keep up. I will be looking to get HE-400s very soon now and enjoy that sweet soundstage/speed/bass/detail upgrade.

    I apologize for not being organized with my thoughts at the moment as I now have my 1 year old attacking me. Let me know if I should clarify anything.

    - Very, very satisfied with the stack
    - What microphonics? (mine is #575 and is very quiet)
    - Great with the HE-300 but don't expect HD650 class
  12. Beocord
    I think it is useless to pay attention to what kind of volumes other people listen to unless files played, players and settings used etc are specifically stated. With some music I can crank Vali all the way up when using foobar with crossfeed dsp. With certain pieces of music I can even crank up the Vali AND Xiang Sheng dac-01 that I use as a preamp/dac. If I were to do that listening to spotify I would propably go def.
    I was quite certain that I would end up selling xiang sheng or taking it to my parents place to be used as a dac for a pair of genelec 6010a monitor speakers. So a long side Vali I also purchased modi to be my dac until I upgrade to meier daccord. Even out of the box it is clear that vali/modi is better than dac-01. Soundstage is slightly improved, detail is improved, bass got bit more authority. Biggest improvement is the highs. Dac-01 tends to be very bright which leads to grainy sound with most headphones on a occasion. Schiit sounds more natural. It is cheaper to get dac-01 in eu than schiit. In both cases you have to pay taxes but from china there are no shipping fees. I'ts worth it though. Schiit stack is an obvious upgrade for me. Only thing that xiang sheng does better is mere power. It seems that ear breaking loudness levels are achieved about 30-40% faster with dac-01 than Vali. And of course if one needs multiple functions and connections dac-01 is a better deal. But judged by sound quality only vali/modi is a a solid choice.
  13. K.T.

    Well, if your HE-300s were doing something right before, you might still want to hang onto them.

    One thing I've learned over the years is that system synergy is king. You may have a system comprised of very highly rated components. But if they don't work as a complimentary team, the results can be severely lacking.

    On the other hand, you can put together a system of moderately priced or even inexpensive components, ones that work very well together, and the results can be a lot, lot better than you would expect them to be.

    For example, I used to work in a high-end audio boutique in Manhattan (what a ridiculous term for a stereo shop, I know). We had expensive, highly rated lines, as well as moderately priced ones, and some "budget" ones.

    The one system pairing that the staff was contstantly amazed by was a Cairn or Creek DC player hooked up to a Cairn or Creek integrated amp, driving Epos 11 speakers.

    The music from this system was so communicative and emotional. One local guy (who, incidentally, would come in for long listening sessions but never bought anything) actually cried when he listen to his music on this system. That was a first for me, but it confirmed what we were observing about system matching.

    Now this isn't a budget system (I think the whole getup was around $2400 for the CD player, amp, and speakers at the time), but it was as musically satisfying as other systems we had that cost 4, 5 or 6 times as much.

    Incidentally, all of these components performed well with other amps, speakers, etc, but this particular combination really elevated the performance to a special level. System synergy.

    Regarding your HE-300, if there's something you really like about them, you may love them a lot more with a complimentary amp, dac, etc. that pairs well with them. It doesn't sound like the Vali is part of the equation with these phones.

    On the other hand, you could build your system off of the Vali, and see what headphones, dac, etc. pair well with it.

    Please read the thread for people's impression of the HE-400 with the Vali. I didn't find it a satisfactory pairing, myself, but others have had success with it. Still, if you get a HE-400 and find that doesn't quite do it for you on the Vali, it's still a great headphone to have.

    Good luck!
  14. 4nradio
    I was listening frequently all along the way to the 300 hour mark...a very enjoyable listen! Perhaps it's my ears / brain that have been burning in [​IMG]
  15. Mshenay Contributor
    Well I'm nearing about 10 hours my self now, doing some listening with my UAC 202 Dac and my Vali, watching some Net Flix. Have to say it's soundin fine. Bass is taught enough, 3D imagining is sufficent. But there's not a whole lot to be said about streaming lol... well at least not from me. I stream at about 480 quality... chances are I'm running compressed audio in that mix as well. Will do come critcal listening when I get home! 
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