Review: Analog Design Labs Svetlana 2 tube headphone amplifier

Discussion in 'Headphone Amps (full-size)' started by project86, Jul 6, 2011.
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  1. Pudu

    Yes, I know, and he seems to favour the Svetlana as an overall package (forgive me if I've misinterpreted that). Plus cky8 loves it with the ATH ANVs. The thing is, I already have one tube amp which I love. For that reason and reasons of cost, lead time, and explainability, I think I'd probably prefer the V200. So I just need you to confirm that the Svetlana is indeed rubbish with the W3K (sorry cky8) and I can go ahead with an order for the Violectric with complete peace of mind.


    Actually I'd like to say thanks to Project86 for his in depth review of this amp, and his other reviews. They are great reads and hit the salient points with style. It's a bit perplexing that there are so few of these amps out there in the wild. There must be a larger number in communities other than Head-fi.
     
  2. cky8
    It seems I got busted! I am AD's media relations manager and somehow far away from South Korea [​IMG]
     
    No honestly. I was contemplating to buy the Svetlana 2 for quite a while back then. At the time of the W3000ANV release they updated the pictures on their site before I even had the Svetlana 2 in my pocession. I like it and that is how I perceive it. But again these are just my impressions and I hope they count for you as well. Of course there is always that factor which is personal.
     
    Slightly offtopic. I am interested in their USB Tube DAC and they said it would release by the end of 2012 I recall. Still no updates on the site. Anxious waiting.
     
  3. daigo
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    No need to rush since I'm going to a local head-fi meet up next month and might get tempted by another amp at that point :p 
     
  4. project86 Contributor
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    Me too. I sent an email a few weeks back, and haven't received a reply. But it was to one of their engineering people using a Naver.com email (sort of like a gmail account) which may no longer be valid. Maybe I should try their main contact and see. 
     
  5. uelover
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    I will be sorry as well!
     
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    I was initially thinking of the HA5000ANV or the Zana Deux amp but I settled with the Svetlana. The internal headamp on my Benchmark is really good enough as a neutral sounding amp for the W3000ANV so it might be nice to have an alternative tubey sound for the ATH woodies =)
     
  6. project86 Contributor
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    You gotta stop thinking of it in those terms! The Svetlana stands on its own, rather than living in the shadow of better known or more expensive amps. 
     
  7. Pudu

    I know what you mean. I think I've decided to settle with the V200.
     
  8. uelover
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    Settled not as a form of compromise but to an end of deliberation between the options! =)
     
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    Hope that it will work well for you!
     
    I wanted a tube amp to complement my Benchmark HPA2. The V200 might sound too similar and I didn't really like its appearance but that's me =)
     
  9. Pudu

    Totally agree. It's shallow and short sighted, but I've never given the Violectric stuff any consideration before now because the physical appearance is, to me, really nothing special. I like gear that's nice to look at as well as listen to. One thing I do like about it though, is that it seems to pack a lot of performance into a small package.

    I'm leaning away from the Svetlana for the same reasons you went with it - already have a tube amp. The Svetlanas are made to order yes? Any idea how long it will be before you get to try it out?

    If I was still in DC, I would box up the W3kANVs and send them to project86 for an extended listen with the two amps. It seems harder to nail down the really great amps for these headphones (at least compared to likes of LCD, T1, Senns), if you aren't prepared to spring for the ZD, which I am not.
     
  10. uelover
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    Yup the Svetlana are made to order. They told me that it will be shipped out to me from their side before 31st Jan.
     
    I wanted something exotic for the W3ks so I guess this is the one. Given the low price of W3k in the States, Project86 should really go and get one for himself =)
     
    What DAC are you using at the moment?
     
  11. Pudu
    Nada. (well okay, STX and Squeezebox in different rooms). That is, in fact, a strong motivating factor for the VX00s. The 800 seems like a good performer that mates well with the 200 and provides me with what I've been looking for in a DAC. Dropping big money on a DAC has been the hardest thing for me to justify to myself. I can put the difference between the V200 and the Svetlana towards the DAC.

    I too like the exotic rarity of the Svetlana - a part of me will be a little jealous when I (inevitably now, I think) choose the Violectric. What I don't like about the Svetlana is the exotic rarity of it - hard to make a decision based on two impressions, however well respected the sources are. On the other hand that means I will only be jealous of three other people on here. :rolleyes:

    Congrats on taking the plunge.
     
  12. project86 Contributor
    I've been tempted by the W3K but I still love my W1000X and wouldn't want to sell it. But if I had W3K, I'd probably never use the W1000X... so it would just sit there taking up space (which is limited for me). Bad reasoning, I know... Also, I want to get back into Stax one of these days and that means getting rid of other things rather than buying more. 
     
    Pudu, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised by the appearance of the Violectric gear. It's not necessarily much to look at in the pics, but in person it has a certain sophistication that grows on you. The laser etching for example is among the best I've ever seen - very clean. 
     
  13. cky8
    Be it V200 or Svetlana 2. It is a free market and choose as you please. As long as it sounds good to you [​IMG]
     
  14. uelover
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    The only problem is that it is hard to choose one over the other since it is never possible to try before buying.
     
  15. Pudu

    If it's free I have one of each please ... and a ZD for good measure. Cheers! :D



    That's good to hear. I have read comments that they look better in person. I think the V800/V200 stack looks nicer than the amp by itself. And I know it shouldn't really matter. Tubes are just so pretty...:xf_eek:
     
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