ZMF Aeolus Impressions thread
Jan 29, 2021 at 5:30 PM Post #3,691 of 5,319

CaptainFantastic

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Yeah, I powered the Aeolus with a solid state amp for almost a year and when I finally found a tube amp (not OTL) that I could use without much fuss, the whole thing clicked for me on another level.

I would say that in my experience the Aeolus also sounds great out of solid state amps.

I preferred it out of my OTL WA3 (with best tubes) over the RME ADI-2 internal amp, but now that I have the TT2 I really don't mind leaving the OTL tube amp off and enjoying the Aeolus straight out of the TT2.

So personally I wouldn't say that without an OTL amp you are missing out on the potential of the Aeolus. It depends on the solid state amp.
 
Jan 29, 2021 at 5:35 PM Post #3,692 of 5,319

ColdsnapBry

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Yeah, I powered the Aeolus with a solid state amp for almost a year and when I finally found a tube amp (not OTL) that I could use without much fuss, the whole thing clicked for me on another level.

Yea, sometimes I think a Hifiman or Focal might be a better call for me. That said, I currenlty run my HD 600 off my Asgard 3 and enjoy it, a headphone that is popular amongst OTL tube owners.

Sounds like if you go solid state with these 300ohm headphones, you best get something in the upper $$$$ range. Like the TT mentioned above. While an OTL tube amplifier you can get in for $400-1k and be happy.
 
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Jan 29, 2021 at 6:05 PM Post #3,693 of 5,319

AudioPowerHead

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I would say that in my experience the Aeolus also sounds great out of solid state amps.

I preferred it out of my OTL WA3 (with best tubes) over the RME ADI-2 internal amp, but now that I have the TT2 I really don't mind leaving the OTL tube amp off and enjoying the Aeolus straight out of the TT2.

So personally I wouldn't say that without an OTL amp you are missing out on the potential of the Aeolus. It depends on the solid state amp.
Am currently very happy with my Aeolus connected to the Violectric V850/280 combo. However, there is always the feeling of missing out in not going into tubes(esp. OTL). Your sharing helps to alleviate my FOMO somewhat; of course TT is another league altogether.
 
Jan 30, 2021 at 9:59 AM Post #3,695 of 5,319

CaptainFantastic

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Am currently very happy with my Aeolus connected to the Violectric V850/280 combo. However, there is always the feeling of missing out in not going into tubes(esp. OTL). Your sharing helps to alleviate my FOMO somewhat; of course TT is another league altogether.

I think you should be happy with that and there is no need to look elsewhere unless you want a different flavor. In my experience that should easily unlock that top performance from the Aeolus.

I had the Violectric V200 for a short while and I think it has more than enough of the right kind of power to drive the Aeolus to its heights. The 280 probably even more so.

I think the advantage of the TT2 used as DAC and Amp is the all-in-one, no loss in transparency design. Rob Watts emphasizes that adding an external amp only degrades the sound quality. Having said that, adding to its DAC an OTL simply changes the flavor based on the amp and tubes. It's variety, not better performance.

I found this review interesting. It's comparing the TT2 (including amp) with the latest from Violectric.

https://headfonics.com/violectric-dha-v590-review/
 
Jan 30, 2021 at 10:45 AM Post #3,696 of 5,319

YtseJamer

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Hi Zach, quite fancy giving the Universe Lamb a try but see there are 2 versions (perf & non-perf). Which version do you recommend for the Aeolus?

Cheers!

Open headphones = Perforated pads
Closed headphones = Non perforated pads
 
Jan 30, 2021 at 6:01 PM Post #3,700 of 5,319

Pharmaboy

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I thought this soid state vs tubes on the Aeolus discussion were interesting. I have had my eyes on the Aeolus for a bit, but I like the simplicity of solid state. I was a bit worried this might limit my enjoyment with the Aeolus, as I hear it sounds really good with OTL tube amps.

I have a schiit asgard 3 with the built in AK dac.

I've had as many as 8 headphone amps at a time. Currently it's 6: 5 are SS designs of varying power & complexity; 1 is a modest but nice-sounding OTL tube amp (Woo WA3).

I have listened to my Aeolus on a total of 8 amps by now in my system (more at shows). I cannot get this headphone to sound merely "average," much less bad, on any amp. It sounds just like itself on all of them--though it clearly scales nicely with my best SS (V281); and has the usual calm clarity I always hear with a high impedance HP on the OTL (it's the optimal impedance matching).

I love the sound of tubes and fairly soon will be adding a larger, transformer-coupled tube amp to the system (Quicksilver Audio Headphone Amplifier). It's always nice to "take a walk on the tube side." But you seriously needn't worry about the Aeolus getting along with SS amps--it gets along w/all of them.
 
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Jan 30, 2021 at 6:53 PM Post #3,701 of 5,319

AudioPowerHead

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I think you should be happy with that and there is no need to look elsewhere unless you want a different flavor. In my experience that should easily unlock that top performance from the Aeolus.

I had the Violectric V200 for a short while and I think it has more than enough of the right kind of power to drive the Aeolus to its heights. The 280 probably even more so.

I think the advantage of the TT2 used as DAC and Amp is the all-in-one, no loss in transparency design. Rob Watts emphasizes that adding an external amp only degrades the sound quality. Having said that, adding to its DAC an OTL simply changes the flavor based on the amp and tubes. It's variety, not better performance.

I found this review interesting. It's comparing the TT2 (including amp) with the latest from Violectric.

https://headfonics.com/violectric-dha-v590-review/
Thanks for sharing the review.

Indeed the V280 is a powerful amp that can drive almost all low/high impedance headphones with ease. The sound of V590(amp part) is relatively more neutral vs the v281/280; so may not be something that all existing Violectric owners appreciate. Matter of personal preferences.

I have read that the Hugo M scaler is a great add-on due to its superior upsampling capabilities and seems like a must-have to take the TT2 to the next level; close to Dave territory. You may want to consider it. I would have bought it; if not for the fact that my V850 is limited to 192kHz in terms of output and not having the right connecton ports. For upsampling, I currently have the LP RS05 with Femto( a reclocker, resampler unit) but with sampling rate max at 192kHz.

The Aeolus(uni suede pad) is an amazing headphone and IMHO is a perfect match with my setup. Am holding out the temptation to further extend into tubes just for a different flavor; as this may create a bigger rabbit hole for myself. Not liking the idea of having a stash of tubes lying around in my house. :)
 
Jan 30, 2021 at 7:22 PM Post #3,704 of 5,319

AudioPowerHead

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That's a bad thing?

(had to ask)

A major part of my audio life has been creating one bigger rabbit hole after another for myself...
Not necessarily bad for my ears but bad for my wallet. LOL.

And not about to test the tolerance threshold of my wife seeing all the proliferation of my audio gear esp. in last 12 months. :stuck_out_tongue:
 
Jan 30, 2021 at 11:53 PM Post #3,705 of 5,319
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A major part of my audio life has been creating one bigger rabbit hole after another for myself...
That, and $1,000 impulse purchases :fearful:
Not saying I am doing it - I have a friend... :wink:
 

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