Hi, interesting I have just ordered some HD800S and I am pairing with a HDVA600 and Astell & Kern AK320. Cost me a fair bit of hard earned cash, but hoping it sounds good. I use Tidal to stream and have a fair few FLAC files to listen to. I am nervous as I have not heard the set up.
I recently ordered an A&K Kann. Sounds really great.
I wouldn’t worry too much with that setup. You’ve got some great hardware there. I’ve got the HD800 and have briefly owned A&K gear which is also great. Sadly I haven’t heard the Sennheiser Amp but I have heard god things about it and am sure it will pair nicely being a Sennheiser piece. Have fun.
I am in Germany for a short time and I visited Berlin today to go to the Sennheiser store. I spent the afternoon with the HD 820’s paired with the HDV 820. Prior to this, the highest quality headphones I’ve ever put on were the Shure se535’s… for an hour… it’s safe to say that the 820’s have shattered my hopes of ever enjoying other headphones.
Has anyone had any experience with the garage1217 project ember 2? I am almost definitely going to get it but i can’t seem to find any recommendations for or against the pairing. Please lmk if you have experience
You can get my overall impressions of the Ember II here.
I’m sad to say that I’ve never heard the HD 800, so I can’t speak to pairing it with the Ember II. What I can tell you is that the Ember II is nicely made and has plenty of power. Being a hybrid, it works well for dynamic and planar headphones. The selectable output impedance is kind of fun because you can kind of tune your sound that way. I even use it with my RN QT2 IEMs, although I can’t use it at the lowest output impedance because it hisses.
I’ve only used the stock 12au7 tube and some Russian 6N6P tubes, but I was able to immediately notice a difference between them so I do think it’s fairly responsive to tube rolling if you’re into that. It is pretty neat to just be able to pop in different tubes without having to manually adjust bias or the heater voltage, and since it only uses one dual triode tube it makes tube rolling relatively affordable.
I will say that the stock 12au7 tube is very neutral, so out of the box it’s going to sound like most solid state amps, so if you’re looking to adjust the sound of your HD 800 I suspect you’ll need to buy some different tubes. Here’s an old and long thread on the Ember II including lots of tube recommendations.