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Thread: Valve based headphone amplifier recommendations

  1. #1
    Join Date: Jul 2017

    Location: Stafford

    Posts: 25
    I'm Rob.

    Default Valve based headphone amplifier recommendations

    Hi All,

    Can anyone recommend a valve based headphone amplifier that does not hum with mains frequency?

    I tried a Icon audio HP8 MK2 recently, liked the presentation but not the mains hum, albeit the hum was very faint but noticeable through my sennheiser HD600's.

    I have a Burson Soloist SL MK2 and it has a silent background and a neutral detailed presentation that I'm very happy with, but you know how it is, I keep wondering if the grass is really greener....?

    Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

    Thanks

    Rob

  2. #2
    Join Date: Feb 2013

    Location: W Lothian

    Posts: 57,208
    I'm Grant.

    Default

    if you have one that doesnt your in luck. most ive tried you get a little. prefer ss for headphones. after saying that the XS dac head amp is fairly hum free
    Regards,
    Grant .... ؠ

    I've said it before and I'll say it again: democracy simply-doesn't-work
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  3. #3
    Join Date: Jul 2017

    Location: Stafford

    Posts: 25
    I'm Rob.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by struth View Post
    if you have one that doesnt your in luck. most ive tried you get a little. prefer ss for headphones. after saying that the XS dac head amp is fairly hum free
    If that is the case Grant, you have saved me some money because I can't live with mains hum in my ears!

    I guess DC heater supply and choke filtering is expensive to implement if that's what's needed.

  4. #4
    Join Date: Nov 2012

    Location: Barry, Vale of Glamorgan

    Posts: 36
    I'm Richard.

    Default

    No hum with my Bottlehead Crack.

  5. #5
    Join Date: Oct 2012

    Location: The Black Country

    Posts: 4,987
    I'm Alan.

    Default

    Hi Rob, I have one of these original PCL805 OTL headphone amplifiers from an article published in 1984.

    http://www.jogis-roehrenbude.de/Vers.../PCL805-KH.htm

    The performance is stunning, it took a couple of tweaks to perfect and as built the gain is very high but there is a way to reduce this successfully.
    Be aware there is an error in the published circuit diagram.

    The end of the article states 'This amp is still offered today (of course, with some improvements) at Audiovalve under the name RKV Mark II' .
    The price of the Audiovalve units is quite prohibitive imo.

  6. #6
    Join Date: Jul 2017

    Location: Stafford

    Posts: 25
    I'm Rob.

    Default

    Thanks Richard, good to know. What cans are you using with the crack?
    I've read they are a match made in heaven with hd600's.

  7. #7
    Join Date: Jul 2017

    Location: Stafford

    Posts: 25
    I'm Rob.

    Default

    Hi Alan,
    Thanks for the link. I will read with interest.
    I've seen the Audiovalve gear, ....expensive!

  8. #8
    Join Date: Dec 2018

    Location: Torquay, Devon.

    Posts: 848
    I'm Shane.

    Default

    Schiit Valhalla 2 is a nice match with 600's.

    S.
    Shane Lonergan.

    Home Hi-Fi Chat UK (Facebook Group)

  9. #9
    Join Date: Mar 2012

    Location: Ireland

    Posts: 28
    I'm colum.

    Default

    I have a EAR HP4 and no hum at all, used with HD800.

  10. #10
    Join Date: Nov 2012

    Location: Barry, Vale of Glamorgan

    Posts: 36
    I'm Richard.

    Default

    I use the HD600 or the DT1990 with the Crack (speedballed). They make a nice noise.

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