Woo Audio WA6/WA3 or Burson HA-160 for HD650???
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Aeolus Kratos

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Hi there everyone,
 
After hours researched the forum, I finally came up with these 3 options for my beloved Senn HD650: The Woo Audio WA3 and WA6 and Burson HA-160. They're in the same price range.
 
I have read a lot of recommendations about the 650's pair with tubes amp. But I'm totally a newbie here, so I may not don't have time as well as the money for hard tubes rolling. So I'm wondering if HA-160 - a solid state amp does a great job with the 650's as well?
 
And is there any other suggestion within my $500 budget?
 
Thanks in advance!
 
Looking forward to hearing from you.
 
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Aeolus Kratos

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Anyone?
 
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Dubstep Girl

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WA6 or WA3. the WA3 will have the tubier sound.
 
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I was amazed when I heard the Woo 3 with HD 650s. The new Woo 3 model also is configured with no preamp out and a little more power to the headphones. I have never heard the WA6 or HA-160 with the HD 650s though.
 
After hearing my older style ( pre-amp out) Woo 3 at a Head-Fi meet with HD 650s, I was so moved I decided to keep it and not sell it.

 
If you can, just go to a show and maybe the gear you want to try will be there. Times at shows folks will mix and match equipment or let you do combo experiments with the gear around.
 
Some configurations can be better with a certain style of music. Some better for Jazz and some better for Rock.
 
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The HA-160 has tube like sound qualities and it will match really good the HD650. I remember old reviews with people using that combo. 
 
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Aeolus Kratos

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Quote:
WA6 or WA3. the WA3 will have the tubier sound.
Thanks a lot :)
Quote:
I was amazed when I heard the Woo 3 with HD 650s. The new Woo 3 model also is configured with no preamp out and a little more power to the headphones. I have never heard the WA6 or HA-160 with the HD 650s though.
 
After hearing my older style ( pre-amp out) Woo 3 at a Head-Fi meet with HD 650s, I was so moved I decided to keep it and not sell it.

 
If you can, just go to a show and maybe the gear you want to try will be there. Times at shows folks will mix and match equipment or let you do combo experiments with the gear around.
 
Some configurations can be better with a certain style of music. Some better for Jazz and some better for Rock.
My favorite genre is of course Jazz and Vocal. If I liked Rock, I would not buy and use the 650s

 
Quote:
The HA-160 has tube like sound qualities and it will match really good the HD650. I remember old reviews with people using that combo. 
Can you send me the link to that review? Thanks a lot :D
 
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K_19

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I have to say that I was not happy with my old Burson HA160D when I had it in amping most of my headphones, especially the HD800 and LCD-2... quite lacking for both in comparison to the WA6SE I also had at the time. However, the HD650 was the lone exception; those sounded absolutely great with the HA160D and I can definitely recommend that combination.
 
I've also had the regular WA6 in the past and it was a decent combo for the HD650 as well, so both are great matches... I can recommend both. WA6 you can tube roll to play with the sound a bit though.
 
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fabio-fi

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Quote:
Thanks a lot :)
My favorite genre is of course Jazz and Vocal. If I liked Rock, I would not buy and use the 650s

Can you send me the link to that review? Thanks a lot :D
 
Of course 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/532467/review-burson-audio-ha-160-with-listening-impressions
 
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I am currently using an HA160 with various headphones including the HD650 and I would say they match pretty well. However, I have never heard either of the Woo amps you mentioned.
 
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Jasper9395

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Hey, I am currently trying to make a similar decision. I am currently looking for a WA3 or 6. Its probably going to be a WA3 though as it is a bit cheaper. My guess is that it is better to invest the money you save by going for the WA3 by doing some tube rolling. I really want to try out a tube amp. It would probably also be relatively easy to do some DIY modifications on these amps which would be great fun 

 
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Aeolus Kratos

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Quote:
I have to say that I was not happy with my old Burson HA160D when I had it in amping most of my headphones, especially the HD800 and LCD-2... quite lacking for both in comparison to the WA6SE I also had at the time. However, the HD650 was the lone exception; those sounded absolutely great with the HA160D and I can definitely recommend that combination.
 
I've also had the regular WA6 in the past and it was a decent combo for the HD650 as well, so both are great matches... I can recommend both. WA6 you can tube roll to play with the sound a bit though.
As far as I know that the word 'decent' is not as good as 'absolutely great' right? So can I consider that the WA6 is worse than HA-160 when paired with HD650?

Quote:
 
Of course 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/532467/review-burson-audio-ha-160-with-listening-impressions
Nice! Thanks in advance :)
 
Quote:
I am currently using an HA160 with various headphones including the HD650 and I would say they match pretty well. However, I have never heard either of the Woo amps you mentioned.
Thanks a lot for your advice :)
 
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As an owner of a HA160D and Senns 600 and 800 I cannot recommend the Burson for best match.  While I don't own 650s both my Senns sound far better, clearer and more detailed with my little Creek.  The Burson is just OK.  I like its connectivity but I am sure there are other good matches out there, perhaps even better.  I have no experience with Woo products so can't comment on them. 
 
My advice is to try to audition your currnet cans with various amps before you make a buy decision.  I wish I had, now I wonder what to do after spending so much on the Burson, now superceded by the "Conductor", it is rapidly becoming something of a minor white elephant.
 
Good luck.
 
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Not to mention if you just want to try out tubes, there's options out there that are way more interesting. Maybe a bottlehead crack or little dot 3, you know, stuff that isn't ridiculously overpriced.
 
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Quote:
Not to mention if you just want to try out tubes, there's options out there that are way more interesting. Maybe a bottlehead crack or little dot 3, you know, stuff that isn't ridiculously overpriced.
 
Yes I think I am going to buy the crack to pair with my HD650s. It should be easily enough to build, it comes with pretty precise instructions. It just takes a little of your time. After that you can improve it and tweak it to your own tastes as much as you want which is someting I really like about it. We are not just talking about tube rolling here but also swapping the output coupling caps and improving the power supply section. You can do all this bit by bit and each upgrade will not cost you much. On the HD650 appreciation thread people are loving this DIY amp. I have even heard of people who end up selling their WA3 or 6 after they try the bottlehead. It has excellent synergy with the 650s. The basic kit is only 279 USD. 
 
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   I used to own a shanling headphone amp and it worked pretty well with both my grados and akg 701s at the time.I do not believe shanling is marketed in this country at present but I am not sure.But Music Hall makes a hybrid amp that is basically the same amp in a different case.It sells for about 400 dollars it has a tube input and a soild state output.I remember it worked pretty well with my akg 701s which are not the easiest phone to match amps with but it did pretty well at the time.It has the benefit of hybrid operation by combining both tubes in the preamp section with solid state amplification.
   You may want to check out the audio-gd website they offer alot of performance for the money and are quite inexpensive for the performance on offer.Of course you will be dealing with a chinese sourced product which brings questions of factory service if and when you have any service issues.
 
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