I received a pair of HD660s for Christmas. I like them, but they don’t seem like a good match with my Jotunheim w/balanced dac (I think the 6XX is a better combo). I also have an inexpensive Monoprice Hybrid Tube amp/dac (w/Russian tubes) and the HD660s sound pretty good on it. I also tried the iFi Zen Dac/Jotunheim combo and thought it sounded decent. The 660s sounded best on the Zen Dac by itself (4.4 balanced). I have other headphones that sound good on the Jotenheim, but I need an upgrade for my many pairs of Sennheisers. So the question is, what do I get?
I mean, the 6 series tends to sound pretty nice on an otl tube amp, what budget are you thinking? You can use the zen dac as the dac for the tube amp that would be an enjoyable combo imo. Just wondering, what type of sound are you looking to get out of them?
People say they usually sound really good on the dark voice Tube amp. I got a dark voice on sale at massdrop. and I just bought the HD 600 for sale on Amazon. I’m going to see what all this talk is about.
That’s a good question. I’ve considered a Dark Voice, but I am wondering what the next step up would be. I would definitely consider something other than a tube amp, but apparently the HD660s is a little amp dependent. I thought someone on the forum had found a great combo by now.
The biggest issue with the Jot is that the sound is a little too analytical and narrow. The Zen Dac widened the stage noticeably, but the bass suffered.
I would like to retain as much detail retrieval as possible since that is the main advantage of the HD660 compared to the 600/650, and warm the sound up slightly.
Hmmm, I think if you can find a used massdrop eddie current jr amp that would be pretty sweet imo, would keep detail and also still give warmth (but not overwhelmingly so)
Ok, that sounds like a good one to look into. I plan on trying a JDS Labs amp soon as well (probably an Atom). Thanks a bunch.
Yeah if you can’t find a good eddie current, something like the feliks echo or the woo wa6 is a good choice (checking used can yield deals). These amps are pretty controlled while still give the benefits of a tube. I think something like a crack or darkvoice might be too much for your tastes imo
Thanks for the info. I feel kind of lost on the tube amp front. BTW, what makes the crack and the dark voice poor matches?
The dark voice and crack have a very strong “tube” sound, it’s often referred to as wet.
The ZDT Jr is a much dryer signiture, it still sounds like a tube amp, but it’s not as in your face about it.
I found the WA6 to be a bit on the wet side as well FWIW.
They are by no means poor matches, they just don’t suit your preference. You mentioned you didn’t want something overly warm and wanted a more subtle tube, the darkvoice and crack more scream “hey I’m a tube amp here is tube sound” where the other amps I mentioned are tube amps but more subtle and refined sounding, it just depends on preference
Was it the 2nd gen? I thought the 2nd gen was more refined sounding compared to the 1st gen
Great thanks, that really helps. It sounds like I need to go to a meet or something so I can experience some real tube amps. I would very much like to know what a wet sounding tube sounds like.
Yeah if you have the chance to audition anything by all means do so, it can help you figure out what you like
Honestly I couldn’t tell you, I got very little time with it, and I didn’t ask.
Just a follow-up for anyone who is interested. I sold the Jot and bought a Lyr3. The Lyr3 is amazingly good on Sennhesiers (especially the 600). I am using a Modi MB (w/an Eitr) with it. The MB sounded better than the Modius and the regular Modi to me. I also tried a Darkvoice with upgraded tubes and it was no contest. The Lyr3 is much, much better. Don’t get me wrong, the DV sounds quite good. It produces a huge wall of sound, but it just wasn’t clean enough for me. The Lyr3 gives you the cleanliness of a terrific solid-state, with more than a touch of tube magic.
FYI-the Lyr3/Modi MB is a huge step up from the Magni3+/Modi3 combo, as well as, the Atom Amp/Dac combo both of which I have purchased since the original post.
Thus suggestion won’t make financial sense, but I fell in love with my 660’s after pairing them with my “new to me” Violectric V220. It gives them bass and presence like I have never heard from a Senn. My tube amp was nothing special, my Liquid Platinum had Lots of power, but that V220 seems to bring out their best.
That’s very cool. I would like to hear a Violectric. Many people feel that the 660s are amp dependent. They may be right.
Really? Zeos said the opposite. I have HD58X which is similar to 660s and it’s not really amp dependant.