Black Widow [Update] - Second round official, 100 amps total, single chassis

Discussion in 'Eddie Current' started by purr1n, Oct 5, 2015.

  1. jowls

    jowls Never shitposts (please) - Friend

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    Approx 50% of posts in FS threads.

    E595CFE8-6BFD-4BD0-A013-3BE48327360E.jpeg
     
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  2. Mr.Sneis

    Mr.Sneis Friend

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    I just came for the Ashley Madison click-bait ad, but this thread delivers.

    Common sense guys, you break it you bought it!
     
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  3. Gaspasser

    Gaspasser Flatulence Maestro

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    Or as I was advising: don’t buy it if you are worried you will break it
     
  4. westermac

    westermac Friend

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    I was fortunate enough to join the BW2 club a few weeks back (thanks again @Gaspasser) and have been putting it through its paces with the HD600 (stock) and Gungnir Multibit A2. I'll probably pick up an HD800 again at some point in the future, but I'm happy to camp out here for awhile.

    Having never heard a BW myself (or any other EC amp for that matter) my expectations were purely based off of what I had heard about the amp. Suffice to say I'm not disappointed.

    The HD600 has been my favorite headphone since I first heard them (in spite of the many pricier pairs I've owned), but that's not to say they're perfect for me either. Their upper midrange "shout" can be annoying at times; and while the bass is pretty well controlled, it still rolls off fairly early and doesn't have quite enough oomph for me. In the past this led me to owning various LCDses to satisfy my closet basshead, but at the cost of pretty much every other conceivable area of performance. These were the two main areas I was hoping would be improved with the BW2. And... bingo.

    The HD600-centric tuning of the BW2 is clear – the upper midrange emphasis is completely leveled out. Not to the point of neutering it (brass, electric guitars still have bite), but enough to take the spotlight off of that 3-5kHz region and allow the mid-midrange (is that a thing) and lower midrange to open up. Or maybe it's the beefing up of the lower midrange and bass that brings them more in line. Whatever it is, it works.

    As, for the bass, no: BW2 doesn't magically give the HD600 ruler-flat bass extension; but better extension, control, and more emphasis – yes. For kicks and giggles though I would love to hear a good LCD-2 rev2 out of this... Why did I sell mine again?

    Speaking of bass, @purr1n did you ever find out the output impedance of this thing? My guess is it's up there given how similar tonally the BW2+HD600 is to my Project Horizon III's higher OI settings (closer to 120Ω than 35Ω would be my guess).

    Seriously though, for anyone for whom the BW2 is out of the question (price, unobtainable) PHIII + LPS + decent tube + high OI jumper is not a bad BW2 lite. Can't touch BW's soundstage depth, resolution and bass control but it's a pretty good approximation.

    Not much to say about treble. The taste of butter comes to mind.

    As I told @Gaspasser shortly after it arrived, the BW2's sound is a paradox to me. Dense, warm, and full but without any of the usual tradeoffs associated with that sound (muddiness, poor resolution or soundstage depth), in fact it stomps every other amp I've owned in the same areas. I've never heard this much soundstage depth without tubes. What is an EC amp with tubes capable of? Ah, yes – the gateway drug. He was right.

    Why was I expecting the power LED to be red? It's orange. Looks nice.

    Lastly, there are few things more satisfying than a good toggle switch. Buttons be damned.
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2019
  5. msommers

    msommers High on Epipens

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  6. westermac

    westermac Friend

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    Had, yes – sent it out the door as soon as I snagged the BW2. MCTH is better suited for HD650/HD6XX; it had a bit of upper mid/low treble hardness that didn't jive with the HD600.
     
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  7. yvv

    yvv Acquaintance

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    Can only support everything @westermac said, only in connection with the HD650 and the HD580 I'm using it with. I generally prefer warmer sound so the BW2 + HD650 combo is just right. Still don't understand how it was possible to achieve this warmth without any loss in resolution. Same goes for the expansive soundstage normally associated with the best tube designs. The HD580 (no experience with the HD600) is still shouty on operatic vocals even with the BW2, just not as piercing. The HD650 is, again, just right.


    Just my 2 cents
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2019
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  8. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    HD600 off the speaker taps of a refurbed Pioneer M-22 trumps BW2 in my book (but unpractical and hard to source), and is in the same ballpark as the EC AF without the hassle of toobz IMO (especially when used with my mildly efficient speakers) again YMMV and differnet strokes for different folks, whatcha talkin' bout Willis?, which helped sending my AF to a loving home much easier.

    I guess the EC Copperhead project died...
     
  9. e.schell

    e.schell Friend

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    I'm curious as well if anyone has measured the OI of the BW2. One up for sale and trying to dig up some info on pairing with focal's, in particular clears and not having a ton of luck yet.
     
  10. crenca

    crenca Acquaintance

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    Having had the BW2 for a couple of weeks now I like how @Hands, @captkirk, and @westermac detailed the amp upstream. My chain is Gungnir MB A2 > Jot and BW2 > Clears, Eikon, MD HD6xx. I only want to add that when compared to a Jot the BW2 not only has a touch (just a touch) less bass quantity, but is also a "bit less taunt" in the bass like Hands said. Yet, I like it more! I think it is because of the the bass (and the rest of the FR) "organic" qualities of the amp just lend an overall more cohesive and yes, I am going to say it, "musical" sound. This is especially true with the Clears, less so with the Eikon's.

    That said the delta between the Jot and the BW2 is just not that great, and definitely falls into the small/nuanced side of things, at least for me and my preferences/50 year old ears. Not being a head stage guy, I can hear the difference but I don't rate it as high as most others would here at SBAF.

    Am I going to keep it? For now I am really enjoying it, but I suspect I will be lured away by another new toy sooner or later - perhaps this 3F folks are discussing or the Ragnarok 2 when it comes out...
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2019
  11. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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    Hey folks, trying to see if I can get a BW into my Targus 17" laptop bag laptop slot. More than enough width and depth but height/thickness may be the issue. Do the feet unscrew? How thick is it with and without feet?

    Thanks!
     
  12. DEATHxMACHINE

    DEATHxMACHINE Friend

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    Its like 2 1/2 to 3 inches tall. Twice the thickness of your normal extreme gaming laptop.
     
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  13. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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    Definitely will fit the main cavity, should make it into the laptop compartment with some protrusion.
     

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