ampsandsound (aka Amps & Sound)

Discussion in 'Headphone Amplifiers and Combo (DAC/Amp) Units' started by Luckbad, Mar 20, 2016.

  1. Jerry

    Jerry Facebook Friend

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    Even my mogwai+kt88 tubes is already a beast. Quite scary. Really did not expect this kind of power. Even though i dont have the he6 at the moment, i suspect it has more than enough power. I cannot even touch 9am with hek and hd800. This is the most powerful amp i have. As gbeast stated, this power numbers are definitely underrated by Justin.
     
  2. ampsandsound

    ampsandsound MOT - Ampsandsound

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    I have a customer using the Mogwai SE with HE6, no issues, 2.8watts RMS.
    The Mogwai is 1.5watts RMS. Lower noise floor but lower output and smaller iron.
    Id think the Mogwai would be enough, but who says you don't needed a bigger gun.
    For noise floor, its the Encore, Kenzie, Mogwai, Mogwai SE.
    For power, its the Mogwai SE, Mogwai, Leeloo, Encore, Kenzie.
     
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  3. allegro

    allegro Facebook Friend

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    @ampsandsound from prior posts I believe you have used a good ECC801S with the Kenzie. Using a Telefunken ECC801S in my own Kenzie (paired with Tung Sol 1626) soundstage is very good, imaging and resolution is excellent. I find it possible to hear details on recordings I missed previously using my HD800S phones. Does the fully upgraded Mogwai SE equal or surpass a Kenzie using an ECC801S in these areas?
     
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  4. ampsandsound

    ampsandsound MOT - Ampsandsound

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    I think the Kenzie has tone that is very difficult to duplicate.
    The Kenzie Encore give access to the input transformers. Nearly everyone who has heard them back to back has chosen the encore with the input transformers as an option. So, if comparing an Encore to Mogwai SE; its tough.
    The Kenzie Encore is much quieter. The Mogwai SE is much more powerful and has extension the Kenzie doesn't have.
    I can't say one is better, but say each have their strengths.
     
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  5. Btdk34

    Btdk34 Acquaintance

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    @Mithrandir41 It seems like you've heard both the Kenzie Encore and the Agartha. I was curious if I could get a description of how they compare (tonally, soundstage, separation, resolution, etc)? I'm currently leaning between the Kenzie Encore, Mogwai SE, and Agartha for my next amplifier purchase, but I haven't seen a lot regarding the Agartha yet.
     
  6. Mithrandir41

    Mithrandir41 Friend

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    The Encore and the Agartha are similar sounding amps, with the Agartha being a bit warmer overall. A bit more lush, and much more powerful. What kind of phones are you planning to use with it?
     
  7. Btdk34

    Btdk34 Acquaintance

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    I'd be using it with the Ether C v1.1, and I'd also love to use it with some dynamic headphones eventually (HD600/650, perhaps a ZMF option, etc). I like the idea of using the Encore as pre-amp too for my speakers. I have OSMTMs at the moment, but I'm looking into high-efficiency open baffle options for the future (PureAudioProject). I'm trying to plan my choices for the long-term and not box myself in as much as possible :)

    I've had the opportunity to hear the original Kenzie early last year and I liked what I heard. I thought the mid-bass was slightly bloomy from the 32-ohm output, but I loved the extra detail, soundstage, and separation (vs Vali 2) that I was hearing. That was pretty eye-opening.

    If the Agartha is even more lush, I think the Kenzie might better suit my taste. I've heard Justin's line of amps are pretty responsive to tube rolling, though, so I won't completely discount it!
     
  8. Mithrandir41

    Mithrandir41 Friend

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    I'd recommend the Encore in your case. It's a great sounding amp, and has sufficient power for your stated needs. Get a westinghouse 12sl7 for it, if you can find it
     
  9. Btdk34

    Btdk34 Acquaintance

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    Thanks for the feedback! That makes things simpler. The other two amps I'm considering are the Eddie Current Aficionado (for the clarity and soundstage) and the DNA Stratus (only downside to this one is no pre-amp capability). Time to do some more research, good thing I still need to accumulate funds for a while.
     
  10. ampsandsound

    ampsandsound MOT - Ampsandsound

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    I wanted to give everyone an old new idea.
    12B4A tubes will work as drop in with an adapter.
    The adapters have become very common on eBay ~$10 each... $25 for 2 to your door.
    The 12B4A is an amazing tube, its different but sounds amazing.
    The 12B4A tubes are VERY inexpensive and NOS.
    And Oh by the way... they nearly double your power out.
    Measures are from a brand new Encore 8/32 with input transformers and caps headed to a customer.
    On av. there will be ~10% more power after break-in.
    As good 1626 are still easy to get, its not such an issue but its fun to roll.

    I have a bench report if someone can help me post it.
     
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  11. allegro

    allegro Facebook Friend

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  12. ampsandsound

    ampsandsound MOT - Ampsandsound

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    I emailed it to Allego... Hopefully he will post.
     
  13. allegro

    allegro Facebook Friend

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    Here you go:

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Mithrandir41

    Mithrandir41 Friend

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  15. ampsandsound

    ampsandsound MOT - Ampsandsound

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    It is... The Kenzie was never lacking in power for me... but now its a go for headphones wanting more juice.
     
  16. Magnetostatic_Tubephile

    Magnetostatic_Tubephile Almost "Made"

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    Loving the stock tubes with my planars - they not only look but also sound beautiful. No evident lack of power detected but now we know what to look for if needed - thanks!

    Sonic character seems to be focused on tone/timbre primarily but I am also getting satisfying technicalities. (No closed-in soundstage or lack of details and dynamics, at least with the upgraded caps.) Low impedance jack provides satisfying bass impact while high impedance jack opens up midrange and makes headstage feel more enveloping. I am sure that there are more extended, lively or technically profficient headamps out there but this is simply not what Kenzie is focused on. Still, a satisfying step up from Valhalla 2 even in technicalities for me.

    This is probably my first tube headamp that I find sounding just right in its stock configuration, not wanting to tube roll. Well done!
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2018 at 9:51 AM
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  17. ampsandsound

    ampsandsound MOT - Ampsandsound

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    Super kind. Than you. I will say that for $40 bucks all in... its a fun experiment.
    That said, I agree with you. I run my 2 units in stock trim.
     

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