WA2 vs Valhalla 2 vs Crack Speedball
Feb 4, 2015 at 10:28 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 36

Grado77

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I am really itching for a WA2 but have a Valhalla 2 and will be building a Crack with Speedball this week.
 
I've had a WA2 in the cart but can't quite seem to push the buy button.
 
I'll be using T1 and HD800 mainly.
 
I love the multiple inputs of the WA2 but if there isn't a huge leap in sound quality, it would be hard to justify. Any thoughts or comments are appreciated. Thanks.........
 
Feb 4, 2015 at 10:32 AM Post #2 of 36

Mr Rick

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  I am really itching for a WA2 but have a Valhalla 2 and will be building a Crack with Speedball this week.
 
I've had a WA2 in the cart but can't quite seem to push the buy button.
 
I'll be using T1 and HD800 mainly.
 
I love the multiple inputs of the WA2 but if there isn't a huge leap in sound quality, it would be hard to justify. Any thoughts or comments are appreciated. Thanks.........

You will really never know unless you try it. I have a Valhalla 2, a Lyr and an Asgard 2. Sometimes I feel like a nut, sometimes................
 
Feb 4, 2015 at 10:41 AM Post #3 of 36

Grado77

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$1200 is unfortunately too big a gamble for me to try. I'd be pretty disappointed if it was only a marginal improvement. The WA2  doesn't seem like a powerhouse on paper either (relatively speaking at 600 ohm), so I really want to be sure.
 
Feb 4, 2015 at 10:55 AM Post #4 of 36

Mr Rick

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  $1200 is unfortunately too big a gamble for me to try. I'd be pretty disappointed if it was only a marginal improvement. The WA2  doesn't seem like a powerhouse on paper either (relatively speaking at 600 ohm), so I really want to be sure.

Let me put it to you this way. Do you really want to drop $1200.00 on the opinion of a stranger? WA2 owners might tell you it's the best thing since sliced bread. I happen to love my Valhalla 2. Someone else likes his Crack. You see where I'm coming from?
 
Why not build the Bottlehead, listen to it for a while and compare it to your Valhalla 2?
 
Feb 4, 2015 at 11:50 AM Post #5 of 36

Grado77

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  . Do you really want to drop $1200.00 on the opinion of a stranger?

 
Captain obviously not the preferred method. But opinions surely do help especially in the case of a $1200 amp with a 10% restocking fee.
 
Do you not listen to anybody before buying any of your items? Buy blind and see for yourself? That's one way to do it I suppose.....
 
Feb 4, 2015 at 12:01 PM Post #6 of 36

Mr Rick

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Captain obviously not the preferred method. But opinions surely do help especially in the case of a $1200 amp with a 10% restocking fee.
 
Do you not listen to anybody before buying any of your items? Buy blind and see for yourself? That's one way to do it I suppose.....

I'm a retired engineer and I'm of the mind that any properly designed amplifier will sound like any other. ( Headphones are another matter).  So, yes, if I see something I like I buy it, and come to my own conclusions. I'd rather do that, and have no one to blame but myself should the item not meet my expectations.
 
Feb 4, 2015 at 5:43 PM Post #8 of 36

whirlwind

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Can't wait to hear your opinions, as I am thinking about the WA2 for my HD800 also.  
smile.gif

 
Feb 13, 2015 at 7:51 AM Post #11 of 36

Dubstep Girl

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  I've no will power.......just ordered WA2 ............

 
good choice, by a good margin the best amp out of these 3, especially for HD 800 and T1. now get tube rolling!
 
Feb 16, 2015 at 7:51 AM Post #13 of 36

Grado77

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good choice, by a good margin the best amp out of these 3, especially for HD 800 and T1. now get tube rolling!

 
I absolutely concur. (Although it can be a costly affair)
 
I just finished building the Crack (no speedball yet) and while very impressive, just isn't in the same league as the WA2. The Woo is just an incredible machine......killer looks, killer airy separation, built like a tank. WOW is all I can say.
 
If I had to do it all over again, I'd buy a WA2 right from the start and be done with it.
 
However, it was a great experience building an amplifier, and the Crack is no slouch. It has alot of appeal (such as only 2 tubes to go wrong vs. 6), brilliant audio and looks, Bottlehead company, kits, and support are amazing.
 
I'll try to give some comparative review later but as it is right now, The WA2 is my favorite, Crack next, and then Valhalla 2.
 
Feb 16, 2015 at 8:03 AM Post #14 of 36

Grado77

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Of course, one of my preferred reviewers has to recommend the most expensive one. I don't believe my wallet is going to appreciate this.

 
I say go for it, you will have no regrets ..... but do understand tube rolling can be very expensive. For now I am liking the Philips ECG 6080, Amperex Bugle Boy 6DJ8, and the stock EH rectifiers.
 
Feb 16, 2015 at 10:45 AM Post #15 of 36

walls

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I also think my WA2 trumps my other amps by quite a bit. The Crack is a fantastic amp for the price but it doesn't have near the layers of the WA2, especially with the T1's. In my experience however I do find that my HD650's sound much better with the Crack then my T1's but my T1's trump the HD650's with the WA2, but either way they BOTH sound better on the WA2 then they do on the Crack.
I also have a Schiit A2 and an older LDII++ and I can state that without a doubt both the Crack and the WA2 are leaps over either of these amps with the A2 being my least favorite.

BUT, here's the catch, the WA2 is also far more expensive then any of the other amps and when buying one needs to consider this as well. For me the WA2 is well worth the extra coin but if my budget was tight then the Crack would have kept me satisfied for a long time and if my budget was REAL tight then the LDII++ with the right tubes would have done the same. The A2 however, nope.

So my .02 is easy, if you have the money and want a top notch contender then the WA2 is one to look into. But if you are on a budget and don't mind the build (which is really easy and quite fun) then go for the Crack. You won't be disappointed either way!

Just an FYI, I had already owned the WA2 before I bought the Crack. The Crack was purchased pretty much just to see what all the fuss was about. I had planned on selling it after I got to use it for a while and well, I'm not, so that's gotta say something about the quality of the sound it produces. Lol
 

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