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Author Topic: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800  (Read 100584 times)

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kapanak

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Re: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800
« Reply #610 on: September 20, 2015, 10:52:36 PM »

Marvey compared the Luxman to EC's Zana Deux, even though he seems to not have tried EC's own solid state Black Widow amp.

Because when the comparison by Marv in the OP was written, Black Widow didn't even exist (even the name, the prototype was called Red Top).
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CEE TEE

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Re: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800
« Reply #611 on: September 20, 2015, 11:22:55 PM »

I find the choice between the Black Widow and the ZDS difficult.  I would probably lean towards towards the ZDS, but the heat from those Russian tubes just wouldn't work during summer up here. I have a speaker amp with 4 of them so I know. So the BW is the most logical choice. At some point I will add the Gumby and may just spend time listening to more music. Of course I could go nuts and have both amps. One for summer the other for winter. But that would be a bit over the top.

Although the nice warm glow from a tube amp on a cold winter night.........

Hard to say the Black Widow is like a "daily driver" because the performance is so good. But for that "extra bit" of headstage/body/openness and the ownership of an EC tube amp...there are many things that are so compelling for both.  I stay happy by having "at least" a ZD and a really great Moth/ZD-Craig-Prototype amp plus the Black Widow.  And Geek Outs.  Plus my iPhone.  Life is good...
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CEE TEE

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Re: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800
« Reply #612 on: September 20, 2015, 11:26:55 PM »

Because when the comparison by Marv in the OP was written, Black Widow didn't even exist (even the name, the prototype was called Red Top).
Marv has said that the Black Widow was "so good" that they looked at the Zana Deux SE again...thus, the newer "Zana Deux Super."
Whether it was that or Marv's curiosity & ever-modding spirit that resulted in ZDS?  We may never know.
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Anaxilus

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Re: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800
« Reply #613 on: September 21, 2015, 06:04:12 AM »

Marv has said that the Black Widow was "so good" that they looked at the Zana Deux SE again...thus, the newer "Zana Deux Super."
Whether it was that or Marv's curiosity & ever-modding spirit that resulted in ZDS?  We may never know.

That and me telling Craig the ZDSE sounded like shit everytime I saw him. This is how I say hello to friends.
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Re: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800
« Reply #614 on: September 21, 2015, 07:23:38 AM »

 @Cee-Tee : insightful post  thks.  I personaly plan to achieve my final HD800 Rig with the DNA Stratus . Different option but I think we share the same quest for our HD800.

I have a question though: why do you advice EQ for some amps and not for the other?  that would suggest that both EC ZDS or BA  induce some tonal coloration , right? 

George Mhmmm

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Re: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800
« Reply #615 on: September 21, 2015, 01:08:51 PM »

I have been extremely happy with my Oppo HA-1. It does everything I need and then some, for a bargain price. Highly recommended.
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kapanak

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Re: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800
« Reply #616 on: September 21, 2015, 03:10:05 PM »

I have been extremely happy with my Oppo HA-1. It does everything I need and then some, for a bargain price. Highly recommended.

Sorry, but I owned the Oppo HA-1, and I could not stand my HD800 with it for even 30 seconds on pretty much any track except for the mainstream pop songs.

It is one screachy sounding DAC/Amp, but I'm pretty sure the DAC was at fault.
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Re: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800
« Reply #617 on: September 21, 2015, 04:00:06 PM »

I have been extremely happy with my Oppo HA-1. It does everything I need and then some, for a bargain price. Highly recommended.

Neg points once more time.  Happy compared to what ? in what conditions ? What did you like precisely ...

Please guys, we're not on Head-fi appreciation thread here. Every opinion is good ro read until it's argumented and when we have an idea of the context. Nobody will blame for you to tell us something we disagree with unless it's not properly argued.

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Re: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800
« Reply #618 on: September 21, 2015, 04:01:12 PM »

What are some of your favorite options for kit that would function as a headphone amplifier for the HD800 and as a preamp for a 2.0 speaker setup (for Magnepan 1.6QRs). Will likely feed with either a Gumby or Yggy. Seems like most of the amps on this list are designed to be dedicated headphone amplifiers, and if they have any outputs they are almost afterthoughts. Would prefer a unit that has a remote for convenience.

The list I have put together so far:
  • Oppo HA1: Mentioned above. Uses Sabre chip for DAC which I already have in my BDP-105D and would like to move away from. Does take balanced input and has balanced/RCA output. Not sure the amp is the best match for the HD800. Great price though and has a remote.
  • Schiit Ragnarok: Has preamp outputs, but when I asked around on Head-Fi people didn't seem to love the Rag functioning just as a preamp. The most-recommended use I found was using the speaker taps to power a pair of monitors and the preouts for one or two powered subwoofers. I emailed Schiit and they did not think the Rag speaker taps would have enough power for the Maggies. No remote.
  • Moon Audio 430HA: Probably the best preamp option as it includes trickle-down from their Evolution line of stereo preamps. Some favorable and non-favorable impressions in Inner Fidelity's Big Sound 2015. Remote. Also solid state. Feel most comfortable with this option at this point.
  • EDIT: Sennheiser HDVD600: Decent option as well with the balanced output, but no remote (confirmed with local dealer). Have not found any impressions of this as a preamp in various searches.

Any tube options I'm missing? Woo Audio WA2 (no remote)?

Or is the best option to not try and find a combo headphone amp / preamp and rather use different outputs of a DAC to separate headphone and speaker system chains?
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Re: Best Amps for Sennheiser HD800
« Reply #619 on: September 21, 2015, 06:11:59 PM »

Just gonna throw out the mjolnir 2 as another option. I haven't used it that way (yet), but it has both balanced and SE pre-outs. Its a step back from the Ragnarok, as a detail transfer apparatus for the HD800, which I kind of liked. Pretty sure some pirates used the original mjolnir as a pre- with general satisfaction; can't imagine anything about the mojo2 would be a step back in that regard. Oh, no remote.
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