I have recently moved from the Sundara to the Ananda and I have found out that the Ananda sound better to me with the more linear sound of the Heresy instead of the warmer one of the Zen Can and that made me question whether I am missing out some sound improvements sticking with the Heresy.
I really do like transients and dynamics in an amp and the Zen Can (while amazing with the Sundara) was a bit duller there with the Ananda. Do you believe an upgrade to a THX / A90 / RebelAmp would be worth it?
hey Pif502, DAC and Amps all have sound signatures to them and then you can even have a ‘house’ sound that a particular brand may become known for, despite having multiple products. the DAC has the least influence, compared to an amp as it’s more nuanced in what it does. an amp has an immediate / up front influence and that’s a big part of what you noticed between the Zen and the Heresy.
that said, the Anananda is a solid headphone and actually deserves a better DAC and amp than entry level solutions like the Zen CAN and Heresy.
many may disagree with this assessment, but to help get your head around ‘sound profiles’, I say there are three types: warm, neutral and cool
warm is rich, meaty and particularly easy on the ears and pleasing to the soul
neutral is where influence on the sound is kept to a minimum and if push came to shove, would likely lean to the cool side than the warm.
cool is where most disagreement happens with my types. it’s not cold, but it’s clinical, analytical and detailed.
in addition to these descriptions, not all headphones will do well with some of these sound profiles.
it is quite the experience to learn and experience all this stuff and is usually a lot of fun!
Yeah, I had that impression. As long as I know the Zen Can should be leaning towards a warmer tonality and the the Heresy should be leaning towards neutral and I would like to keep it towards neutral.
The options I had in mind were the THXs or the Topping A90 and I am seriously evaluating the A90 as anyone seem to favor it.
I was wondering if anyone had some pairing to recommend.
hey Pif…the Heresy actually lies more on the cool side than neutral. and don’t bother with the THX…it’s very cool and while it was the craze, THX is a fad in regards to headphones and makes for a sound that is so cool it can be called sterile. of course, sound is subjective, so if you try a THX amp and find yourself liking it, go for it. just make sure you have a DAC that’s similar to whatever as used when you demo’d the THX amp.
A really good amp to consider would be the Schiit Asgard 3. It’s a better price than the Zen CAN, but performs so well that Schiit discontinued the more expensive Mjolnir because it does a better job.
and for the fun of it, look around for reviews for the Ananda used on hybrid tube amps. if it plays well with them, consider the Schiit Lyr or perhaps the Monolith Liquid Platinum.
heck…if you don’t have it already, get a Zen DAC or Zen DAC Signature (this one has no amp integrated) to use as a DAC with a warm sound signature to help you play around with future amps.
I have the Zen DAC v1 and love it.
I didn’t know the Heresy was considered cool sounding. I kind of like the pairing though. I have instead heard many saying that the THXs can be “unmusical” and that is one of my worries.
You are not the first one that recommended me the Asgard 3 and I should have bought it in place of the Zen Can but it’s hard to find at this moment where I live. Any thoughts on the RebelAmp or the A90? Did you have the chance to try them?
try to sell the Zen CAN. put it upon the Buy & Sell thread we have here in Off-Topic, over on the USAudioMart.com and if you’ve been a member long enough, on r/avexchange.
put in you’ll trade for an Asgard 3!
What amps would one consider neutral?! I had assumed the Heresy was neutral!
the Magnius leans is more neutral. Heresy is on the cool side of neutral while the Magni 3+ is on the warm side of neutral.
will be interesting to see where the IEMagni 3 fits.
So I totally bought one today! Happy to share my thoughts after it arrives!
I am getting into the IEM world, so I though it would be cool to give it a go!
Still no availability for Asgard 3 on Schiit’s EU website. My worry with the Asgard is that at some point I will feel the need to upgrade again and I would like to avoid that. Also I am worried the Asgard could be close as signature to the Zen Can I have. I want to avoid the dullness in transients and dynamics (I do like my snares).
Any thoughts about the RebelAmp or the A90? Is the A90 similar to the THXs as sound signature?
I assumed that too to be honest. Well, I guess I like colder sound signatures with the Ananda. I may as well keep the Heresy at this point.
hey Pif, yes…keep equipment for as long as possible. it allows you more opportunity to mix and match and learn.
I didn’t know you were in the EU, so do understand how difficult it is to get Schiit products over there. does their UE site have a B-stock section like their US does? also, check out UKaudiomart.com. there may be some awesome used options to consider.
In the end I have yoloed the RebelAmp. Max Settings review sold it to me. It should have nice details, dynamics and staging which are all things I care about in the end and is less warm than the Asgard. That should check all of my boxes.
I’ll prob sell the Heresy and the Zen Can eventually down the line or keep them to mix things up like you suggested. Thank you anyway for your advice. Perhaps I’ll post my impressions when I will receive it.