Which Amp & Dac pairs the best with Sennheiser HD600/650s?

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  1. cossix
    Just for what it's worth, my 650 sounded noticeably better running balanced through the Jot. For some reason my LCD2 don't seem to benefit as much but the change in channel separation with the 650 was surprisingly good
  2. ahmadfaizadnan
    I like Rupert Neve Design RNHP and Liquid Carbon with my HD6XX. Just want to throw in some extra options.
  3. koover
    My 2 cents is why not upgrade a bit to a Schiit Lyr2. It's in your budget. Still get the Schitt Modi multibit (Mimby) Dac too as it's better then the built in Dac in the Jot if you decide to go that way.
    The Lyr2 is a tube/SS hybrid amp. I own both. The good thing about the Lyr2 is you can still get the SS sound of the Jot and be able to roll tubes to your liking. Of course going down that rabbit hole with tubes can be expensive if you don't watch yourself.
    I hardly use my Jot anymore as the 650's sound sublime with the Lyr2 but same cane be said with the Jot.
    I A/B the 2 amps and there's not an incredible difference between them unless you get yourselves a descent pair of tubes or 2 to roll the sound sig to your liking.
    So many options bro!
  4. Heinstar
    SS/tube hybrid amp sounds interesting. But I'm going to stick with Amps that's reported to pair best with HD6XXs to be on the safe side. Which from what I'm reading are tubes instead of solid state and it's either BHC w/ Speedball (best) or Darkvoice 336SE (second best alternative) or Bravo Audio Ocean if you're on a low budget.

    Anyways, I've decided to order Darkvoice 336SE from eBay and I only had to pay $287.08. I still want to know what the hype is around BHC w/ Speedball. So in the future, I'm going to either look for a preowned BHC w/ Speedball for under $500 or learn to build/solder one myself.

    I'm also curious about the sound of Jotunheim from a balanced cable on HD650 which people seems to also rave about. So maybe I might save up for Schiit Jotunheim or some other balanced SS Amp in the future as well.

    For Dac, it sounds like there isn't that much noticeable difference between the high-end and budget ones. So I think I'll just go with Schiit Modi 2 @ $199AUD from addictedtoaudio.com.au. I could probably just use my Audiogine D3 as a Dac, but since it already has a built-in Amp, it might affect the sound coming from the Darkvoice.
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2017
  5. koover
    Good deal and congrats on your decision.
    I run balanced 650 through Jot. Sounds good but it’s not a world of difference.
    Also, I upgraded from a modi 2 to modi mutilbit (Mimby) and to me, it’s a huge step up and made all the world of difference. It’s like a $50 difference and money well spent. The Jot and modi are both on the bright/edgy side while the Mimby has more of a warmer SS and balances everything out. The Mimby is probably the best value for the money out there.

    By the way, the Lyr 2 is a tube amp. I never run with the SS tubes (lsst) you can get for it. Might as well just get a Jot. Rolling tubes through the L2 is a lot of fun.
    Again, congrats and enjoy your DV.
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2017
  6. cossix
    The 650 sounded noticeably better from the balanced out on the Jot as compared to its own single ended out. Not a massive difference, but the channel separation was better and I had a much clearer image of individual instruments. I'd still vote for the Crack or DV (I see you've bought the 336 already!). Even after I got the Jot, literally everybody still said I haven't truly heard the 650 until I test them with a Bottlehead Crack. I wouldn't bother with the Jot unless you want something versatile for down the road
  7. buke9
    Well just have to say there is a big difference from from a budget dac and a high end one. I have a Yggdrasil and have yet to hear anything that is better that costs less. There might be one but have not heard it and that includes the Mojo and have not a/b them but pretty sure the Hugo 2 also. For the price a Chord Mojo is very good.
    koover likes this.
  8. Heinstar
    Actually, I've changed my mind. I've read that Modi 2 is actually no better than onboard DACs so it's pretty useless upgrade from my Audioengine D3. I don't know at which point the diminishing returns of price happen with DACs but I decided to go with the Modi Multibit (Mimby) just in case because I hear so many rave about it on forums. I got it for $399AUD from addictedtoaudio.com.au (free shipping). I also had a look at Bitfrost multibit but that costs $871.80 directly from Schhit which is the cheapest I can get it for which still to me is an insane price for a DAC.

    Hopefully, the DarkVoice 336SE + Modi Multibit is going to be a good combo for my HD650s. In total, I've paid $773.78 which is a hefty amount, hopefully it was well worth it. Thanks guys for your help!
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2017
    koover likes this.
  9. agnarr
    I am using DA&T Q-V to drive my HD600,and it sounds soft、warm and sweet.

  10. koover
    Congratulations man! :) Well I hope that combo has the synergy you're looking for. I don't know a thing about the DV 336SE but enough to know about the Mimby that I "know" you made a wise and fiscally responsible choice. Damn, I'm sounding like I'm at work. I'm really curious once you receive and get everything set up, what your impressions are. I truly hope everything works out the way you envision it.
  11. god-bluff
    Not familiar with the amps mentioned so far Sennheiser themselves used to use the Graham Slee Solo for a number of years for demoing these. Ought to be good (my Voyager is and my Myryad with the 600).

    Also Meier Corda amps are highly rated All solid state... you don't necessarily need valves ?!?

    EDIT or Rupert Neve RNHP obviously :wink:
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2017
  12. koover
    I don't know bro, the Jot sounds great with the 650's. Almost a perfect pairing to me at least, especially with an improvement in the channel separation going balanced. A perfect balance between the brighter SS of the Jot and smooth silky (a "lil" rolled off treble) SS of the 650's.
    It's all irrelevant anyway as the DV with Mimby should hopefully be the ticket.
  13. ahmadfaizadnan
    RNHP is an amazing piece of amp if you don't care about balanced out :L3000:
  14. ProtegeManiac Contributor
    People don't like those because it's tonally similar to the O2 with smoother top end when pushed, but with more power. Either it's too similar to the O2 or people will just buy the O2.

    I like them and I'm still looking at resurrecting my Cantate.2. I have a suspicion that what's busted in mine is the Alps pot.
  15. Heinstar
    Update: I've noticed better sound details after swapping my preamp to GE 6SN7GTB. But after changing the poweramp to the Tung-sol 7236, I couldn't tell any difference in sound (possibly got a little worse) which was disappointing because it cost me a lot of money...

    All of my songs are 16bit/44.1kHz Flac files converted to Apple lossless using XLD. And once I started using BitPerfect in the suggested setting(http://bitperfectsound.blogspot.com.au/p/manual.html), AudioengineD3 actually started sounding pretty good at 24bit/96.0kHz. DarkVoice at 24bit/192.0kHz still triumphs over AudioengineD3 in overall sound quality, bass, vocals and sound stage. But everything sounds too muffled/dark and lacking in clarity and sharpness. AudioengineD3 on the other hand, while lacking in bass it's more clear, detailed and defined. Overall, it produces better clarity, higher pitch and more details in every sound than DarkVoice. The actual weaknesses are in the vocals and soundstage which are just plain inferior. So I'm considering purchasing Solid State amps next.

    What other tubes do you guys recommend that I try? I'm hearing good things about Sylvania 6SN7W, Sylvania VT-231 and Kendrick VT-231 for Preamps. I couldn't really find that many consensus recommendation on Poweramps besides Tung-sol 5998.

    Other amps I've heard of: https://imgur.com/a/A7eSX

    Where I bought the tubes:
    GE 6SN7GTB: https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/GE-USA-6SN7GTB-6SN7GT-6SN7-VT231-strong-black-plate-halo-getter-NIB-NOS-tube/122732958496?ssPageName=STRK:MEBIDX:IT&_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649
    Tung-sol 7236: https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/7236-TUNG-SOL-NOS-Side-to-Side-Balanced-Noise-Tested-SUB-6AS7-5998-WE421A/222740599839?ssPageName=STRK:MEBIDX:IT&_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2017
    tamio likes this.
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