Schiit Valhalla 2

Discussion in 'Headphone Amplifiers and Combo (DAC/Amp) Units' started by Cspirou, Oct 8, 2015.

  1. Garns

    Garns Friend

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    @Scott Kramer I am indeed! But I went rogue:

    tmp_12925-rps20170720_082611292033393.jpg

    Okay, okay, so I have a few 6SN7 to use in the Freya, and I already had some socket savers, so I just needed a pair of 6SN7 to 6922 adapters. DON'T DO THIS.

    ...in practice a 6CG7 is electrically identical to a 6SN7, so the overall sound is pretty much the same. The 6SN7 do seem to have a slight edge, like maybe 5%. Haven't experimented much with different 6SN7 as I've been digging the speaker setup of late.
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2017

  2. Scott Kramer

    Scott Kramer Friend

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    Cool stuff @Garns and neat you can run those bigger tubes... I have plenty to enjoy and play around with! Purchased a new set of 6CG7/6N6P-IR but that's it!!!!! -->

    v2.png
    These tubes came with my used Valhalla2
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2017
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  3. Mdkaler

    Mdkaler Acquaintance

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    OK I get the phase reversal cable; will make one on upcoming labor day weekend. But for the balance-to-SE adapter I have a quick question:

    Is it just a normal XLR4 female to TRS 1/4 male?
    As in, is it the same as cutting the TRS 1/4 end of a headphone cable (such as HD650/TH-X00) and solder an XLR4 female to the cut end? If that's the case, it'll save me from soldering the TRS 1/4 end.

    Thank you in advance.
     
  4. Residentsleeper1245

    Residentsleeper1245 Rando

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    Hey, those of you with valhalla 2 and hd650 do you prefer high or low gain?
     
  5. k4rstar

    k4rstar Friend

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    High gain. The sound is more open, immediate, and dynamic versus low gain. The output impedance is also raised to 14 ohms from 3.5 ohms.
     
  6. Sonorus

    Sonorus Rando

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    High gain of course!
     
  7. SKiring

    SKiring Friend

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    Alright I'm going to write a mini review that both consists of me being absolutely content with my total package system and not being able to recommend it at the same time.

    In my previous post: http://www.superbestaudiofriends.org/index.php?threads/schiit-valhalla-2.175/page-21#post-135233 I mentioned that my friend @Provisus and I were comparing the Laconic ZD Mini and my Sylvania 6CG7 powered Valhalla 2 to play with. He wanted to sell the ZDM due to the volume issues (it's super loud at very little volume) and I wanted to see if it would suit my needs so meet time!

    First we plugged in everything and simply used my HD800M to try to find the differences with a better DAC (Mimby >>> Mojo in that regard for sure) and see how we like it. Overall after about 10 different tracks each and every time we concluded the same thing:
    - Micro details, clarity, layering etc. Valhalla2 > ZDM.
    - Macro details, texture etc. > ZDM > Valhalla2
    This is in a nutshell in general you can follow my previous response and that's pretty much how we both heard it. They are far closer than this comparison might seem. We were talking and were joking about how it would be awesome if we had the Valhalla2's micro details, clarity and staging and the ZDM's more relaxed and natural (musical if you will) presentation. Suddenly I had this eureka crazy moment, what if we use the Valhalla2 as a pre amp, would it become this best of both worlds combination of love or an abomination that kills both system's strengths?

    Let me just say that I'm now the proud owner of the Zana Deux Mini haha. It's absolutely amazing this combination is essentially all I want from an amp and more. Super natural (not warm and syrupy presentation), faster, at the same time micro details reaching as the Valhalla2 does so well and the layering. This is like the ultimate amp before you need to go to serious big boy territory to compete. On top of that thanks to the volume control on the Valhalla2 all the volume issues are solved that we had with the ZDM before.

    That said however, I can't possibly recommend it. Let's just do a cost analysis:
    Valhalla 2 + Sylvania 6CG7s: $400~ €400
    Zana Deux Mini + better tubes:$450~ €430
    If we tally this we're now sitting at the sub $1000 category. Now for me this is fantastic value but for people that like the Mjolnir 2, we are also reaching right in it's price range. This works for me, I'm loving it and would love to let others hear how awesome this zombie combi is. But at the same time this is NOT a recommendation, unless you can audition the combination with a good set of tubes and then decide yourself, at this price point it's a completely different market and with the extra effort needed to get the ZDM honestly not the route I'd say go and take.

    Anyway wanted to share this little journey. Next up Gen 5 on my Bimby and I'm gonna just call it quits for the time being. Unless some big bang happens or I decide to get rid of more disposable income than I'm now willing to spent, I'm gonna say I'm happy to the max with this system and my HD650M and HD800M.
     
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  8. damaged-goods

    damaged-goods Acquaintance

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    I consider some tube rolling with my Val2 and would appreciate some advice.
    The stock tubes are very nice but the grainy treble bugs me more all the time. From reading the thread I'd be curious to try 6CG7 and 6n23p (6922) tubes. Now I'm a complete noob when it comes to buying tubes so the big question is if NOS is a "must" for good sound on the Val2. From what's on offer at ebay it seems too easy to get ripped of as somebody who is new to tubes. Or do the new production Electro Harmonix tubes do the trick? Some people rave about NOS and how bad new production is but people also rave about the differences in audio cables. Whilst I know cables influence the sound I wouldn't start tuning my audiosystem by comparing plenty of them.
    Also is there a difference between the various "gold pins" vs regular options of new tube manufacturers?
    And finally, is it important to have "matched" tubes. Most vendors offer this service but few actually say what "matched" means to them. It's pretty hard to control as a customer.

    Some of these questions might the hard to answer but I'd thankfull for any info. My audio stuff is Eitr- Mimby - Val2 - HD650.
     
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  9. lm4der

    lm4der A very good sport - Friend

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    I tried a few different tubes in the Valhalla2, and my vote is for the Electro Harmonix 6CG7s. They definitely improve the treble and completely remove the dry scratchiness. The amp is much more enjoyable with these, IMHO. I find the soundstage is a little less deep though compared to the stock tubes (the stock tubes excel on the soundstage). To buy gold pins or not, matched or not? I don't know, but I did both when there was the option because I hate money.

    Edit: I bought from the Tube Depot or the Tube Store, not EBAY, just ftr.
     
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  10. Sonorus

    Sonorus Rando

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    Well i have tried them and returned , i found the treble to be rolled off and lacking in detail.
    I prefer JJ6922 gold pins.
    I have also a pair of Reflektors 6n3p nos , waiting for the adapters to come.
     
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  11. lm4der

    lm4der A very good sport - Friend

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    That is interesting. I have the JJ E88CC gold pins - I think that's the same as a JJ 6922? If so, my experience is the opposite. My JJ E88CC's are very soft in the treble (like I can listen to Death Magnetic on them and it sounds good, lol), whereas my 6CG7's sound right. I'm not discounting your experience, I'm just wondering what the missing variable is.
     
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  12. Sonorus

    Sonorus Rando

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    Yes they are the same.
    Well maybe there is one simple explanation - when i tested the 6CG7 i was using (due to wrong information) the 6H30Pi as power tubes which
    as is already known are not suitable for the Valhalla 2.
    Then i returned the 6CG7 and after that i discovered that the 6H30Pi were causing heat problems and not working properly
    due to high current draw.
    So never tested the 6CG7's with the original tubes.
    May i should give them a try again.
     
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  13. damaged-goods

    damaged-goods Acquaintance

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    I'll try both and get the EH6cg7 and the Genalex Goldlion E88cc. Smooth treble might suit me right now.

    Soundstage of Mimby and stock tubes is absolutely special. Same with plankton and microdynamics.

    Lucky you, money hates me. ;-)
     
  14. synthwavefan

    synthwavefan Facebook Friend

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    High gain.
     
  15. David De Lucena

    David De Lucena Almost "Made"

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    Greetings @Garns
    I was thinking to use my 6sn7 tubes like your pictures. Can you describe your experience? Is it Worthy to try?
     
  16. Garns

    Garns Friend

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    I think 6SN7 or 6CG7 is worth a try. It's definitely different from most 6922. I find the technicalities are better and it's less veiled. But bass is still soft and soundstage is maybe a bit less natural. The difference between different 6cg7 or 6sn7 is fairly minor though I still prefer the 6sn7 marginally. If you already have 6sn7 it may be cheaper to get socket savers etc than to chase down a pair of nos 6cg7. You need 2x socket savers and 2x 6922 to 6sn7, so long as your socket savers are reasonably deep (I had some of the Tubemonger ones already, and they are deep enough). I can't recommend any serious rolling with the Val 2 as it's just not worth it, but ifyou can find the necessary bits for <$50 then go for it.
     
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  17. JNicko

    JNicko Rando

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    Pardon the possibly stupid question, but does the Valhalla 2 use all four tubes at the same time? i.e, in a perfect world they would all burn out together after x hours?

    I'm completely new to amps and dac's, so just wanting to clarify for future reference

    I'm considering a Valhalla 2 or Vali 2 at the moment for my new HD800S's, but if the Valhalla 2 uses all four tubes at once, I wouldn't be able to justify the £100 yearly maintenance fee of tubes for a £365 amp :eek:
     
  18. Skyline

    Skyline Friend

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    Yes, it uses all 4 tubes. They can last years, though, depending on how much you listen. If 1 tube goes bad, you can replace just that tube, though your results may vary when it comes to matching.

    A replacement set up 4 tubes from Schiit runs $40. Not sure how that cost will play out for Europe, though...
     
  19. JNicko

    JNicko Rando

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    Oh boy, it just dawned on me that the Schiit store sells the tubes in sets..

    A full set replacement is £40 in the UK, which isn't really much more than in the US

    This has just made it a bit harder on which amp to buy.. I'm aware there's a specified thread for the 800's and 800S's, but it might be handy to ask here

    Do any of you guys run a pair HD800(S) through the Valhalla 2?

    Thanks
     
  20. Sonorus

    Sonorus Rando

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