Nobsound NS-08E also know as Nobsound 6J9 hybrid tube amp

  1. Headphone4Life
    I've looked for a thread about this amp and didn't find one so I wanted to start one.

    This is a very cheap hybrid tube amp at around $50 but don't let that fool you because its a nice little amp. Compared to my Schiit Vali I think it adds a little more in SQ while being as powerful. At 1100mW (32ohm) it has plenty of power to push most headphones and sound really nice with HE-400i and Sony Z7. I was thinking the tubes wouldn't play much of a part in this amp but I was wrong, they add a good bit of warmth and color that sounds quite good. You get the power of a solid state amp with a nice bit of tube warmth at a very good price. I bought this amp with no real expectations, I just wanted to hear what a $50 hybrid amp sounds like. Now after using it for about a week I haven't touched my Vali once, just saying.

    Here's some specs,

    Output power: ≥ 1100mW (32 ohm)
    Adapter Headphone Impedance: 18-600 ohm
    Total harmonic distortion: <0.005% Frequency Response: 20-30KHz
    Size: 111 * 69 * 32 mm (L * W * H) , (height 73mm when add tube)
    Net Weight: 185g

    If anyone else has this amp or even another sub $100 hybrid let me know.
     
    Submariner2 and TheBIGKill1998 like this.
  2. robert1325
    Good find. Have you tried it with an efficient portable such as the px100-ii? Would the gain be too much?
     
  3. Headphone4Life
    I don't think the gain is a problem. My Sony Z7 are very efficient for what they are and they sound really good also but they're a dark headphone to begin with so they sound a little to warm with the Nobsound. I even tried my TDK BA200 with it and it sounded better than I thought it would. For a $50 amp I had no intention of using much (like I said I bought it just to see) it has surpassed all my expectations. I'm using right now with my 400i through my X3II and it sounds really good. I was going to sell it but not now, or at least not tell I get a new amp.
     
  4. Dan-Fi
    Hey I just received this little amp in the mail and I must say I was really impressed with the all-metal build. I'm listening to it right now with my Grado chromies, using my 4th gen iPod touch and Accudio with its SR325i setting. I must say it has improved in clarity compared to my existing cmoy with an LT1028 op amp. I think the soundstage has noticeably improved.
    One thing though, when I turned on amp, there was a loud pop sound, even with the volume knob set to minimum. Did you get this as well, Headphone4Life? Otherwise I'm really enjoying this amp, especially given how cheap it is!
     
  5. Headphone4Life
     
    Yeah, when you turn it on it does have a popping sound but I don't think its any problem with it.
     
    For the price I can't see anyone really complain about this little amp.  I'm shocked that it sounds better than my Vali with my HE-400i.  I don't like the way my Sony Z7 sounds with it though but I didn't buy it for them anyways.  Plenty of power to push most headphones no problem and really good SQ for what you pay for, anyone on a really tight budget should check this hybrid amp out.
     
  6. Dan-Fi
    Yes, I was on a tight budget and this was my first listening venture in tube-land, albeit in a hybrid sort of way. It certainly does have plenty of power, as I'm only using it at the 3-4 mark on the volume knob and that's loud enough for me.
     
    With regards to the popping sound, it was pretty loud on my SR325is and it got me worried, so what I'm doing now is powering the amp up without it being connected to the headphone, wait about 10-20secs, then connect up my Grados. I don't hear any popping noise when I connect it this way!
     
    Haven't caught the tube-rolling bug yet....but I feel it coming...!
     
  7. Headphone4Life

    I do the same thing you do and connect my headphone after I turn the amp on.

    I've only had this and the Schiit Vali as far as tube amps go but I'm planning on getting a better hybrid down the line some time. As you probably know straight tube amps don't normally work well with planar's so that's why I'm just looking at hybrids. I'm thinking of maybe getting the new Vali 2 which you can tube roll with unlike the original Vali. There's a few good hybrids I'm looking at maybe buying, but to be honest I'm in no hurry because I truly like the Nobsound a lot.
     
  8. DestrucSean
    How well do you think the Nobsound would pair with my Sennheiser HD 700 headphones?
     
  9. AzraelDarkangel
    I'm buying a NuPrime uDSD to pair with my laptop and might buy the nobsound to pair with it for a fun comparison. I don't need the extra power for my AD1000X since it's very efficient and low impedance but at $50 plus extra tubes, it's not an issue to buy.
     
  10. Grizmo

    I have one on its way so I can see how it pairs with cans that have similar charachteristics. On paper it seems it would be a decent option for the hd700 to properly powering them.
     
  11. Dan-Fi
    Well I just got myself an AKG K145/S for....AUD$5! I'm testing them out on the Nob and this little amp can easily drive these 200 ohm headphones! Listening to 80's music through my iPod touch connected via a Fiio LOD, I have the volume knob on the Nob at around 10 o'clock and it is just a tad too loud for me. Wow, these K145's are really nice....good detail and vocals are so crisp! I just need to find some new pads for them though as the existing ones have crumpled a bit....
     
  12. HelgeW
    I'm driving an AKG K702 with the Nobsound. I got the AKG some 3 weeks ago as I was curious about the "analytical" sound they are know for, and bought a Fiio E10K with them. The pair of them was not bad, but I was searching for a stand alone amp instead of the DAC/amp combi the Fiio is. And loving the sound of my Bradford tube amp driving my loudspeakers, I was watching in that direction.
    I have the Nobsound now since a week, and as the DAC is not yet ready, I'm feeding it by the Laptop, so the source is so lala. First (visual) impression is kind of strange: A cheap black profile housing bundled with a massive golden alloy front plate. But the best comes once you power it: The tubes are not just gliming in the soft orange I was used to, but are illuminated by some blue LED. All together - golden front plate, orange tubes, and blue LED - gives a really strange look.
    For the sound, I have to say, they add exactly the bit of smoothness to the AKG to bring them from "to analytical to be enjoyable" to "still great resolution, but soft enough to lean back and just listen". I can't compare to any more expansive amp, and as mentioned, the source is not exactly highend, but first impression is good.
     
  13. trellus
    I just ordered this on a whim... Been interested in trying a hybrid amp to see taste that tube flavor... Kind of hard to pass up for $50.
     
  14. MachineGunz
    Care to write your opinion once you get it?
     
  15. Headphone4Life
    I've been using my S.M.S.L sApIII amp a lot with my X5II but I hooked my Nobsound up to the X5II with my HE-400i and it sounds good. I get that little bit of warmth added to the mids along with a deeper soundstage and more full sound over all. I don't like the Nobsound with my Sony Z7 but with the Hifiman it sounds really nice. I can't think of an amp under $100 that would be better than this one. My sApIII was $65 3 years ago and I think it's equal to the NS-08E though with a different signature. Its more natural sounding with less warmth and that makes it pair great with my Z7 which already has a very warm signature.
     

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