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NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon. (Read 14673 times)
Steve Deckert
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Re: VIDEO TEASER ~ NEW LCD-2 HEADPHONE AMPLIFIER
Reply #15 - 01/14/13 at 00:28:15
 
Here is a picture of the prototype.  Of course you'll have to imagine what it would look like with the black typewriter finish that it will have in production.



The balanced outputs can be either two 3-pin XLR as shown, one for left one for right, or two 4 pin XLR jacks in which case left and right is in the same jack and you'll have two jacks.  Use either one.

-Steve   Smiley


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markv
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Re: VIDEO - Decware Soldering Skills
Reply #16 - 01/20/13 at 20:09:00
 
Steve -

Will the new Taboo MK III require a pre amp or CSP2 to realize its full potential with speakers like the current Taboo?

Mark
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Rivieraranch
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Re: VIDEO - Decware Soldering Skills
Reply #17 - 01/20/13 at 20:10:41
 
Ditto to the previous question and also why are there 2 headphone jacks?
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Chris K
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Re: VIDEO - Decware Soldering Skills
Reply #18 - 01/21/13 at 22:07:49
 
A marriage made in heaven. CSP2+ TABOO II all in one chassis. Use the CSP2+ preamp as a preamp or as a headphone amp for certain types of headphones as needed. Or use the CSP2+ TABOO II outputs as a full blown integrated amp for speakers or the TABOO output as headphone amp for Audeze phones or other that sound better with that. Or use the integrated CSP2+ TABOO II as a killer hard driving preamp using the output of the TABOO to power another amp albeit with a an impedance selector that limit the voltage so you don't blast off you main speakers with to much input voltage to your high current amp that you might use for say ESL's or something like that. A choice of both preamp uses would suit me just fine. I'd like to see those two in one chassis.

Either way I sure would like to know what this NEW TABOO would sound like as a preamp in front of power amp to power my favorite set of speakers. I should have said if the sound was right I would like a one chassis solution. Gotta hear it through speakers too. Hmm....
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« Last Edit: 01/21/13 at 22:15:42 by Chris K »  

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Steve Deckert
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Re: VIDEO - Decware Soldering Skills
Reply #19 - 01/22/13 at 19:05:06
 

Quote:
Will the new Taboo MK III require a pre amp or CSP2 to realize its full potential with speakers like the current Taboo?

Mark


As a stand alone product, the fact that it worked better with a preamp or high output DAC was a deal killer for many people, so that's one of the main things I changed about it, giving it enough gain on it's own now, so that the CSP2+ preamp is no longer needed for best results.

As for using the TABOO as a preamp, that's not going to be an option unless you already have speakers or LCD2's hooked up to it, and run the other headphone jack as a preamp output.

There are TWO headphone jacks because we don't want the headphone cable to drape across the top of the amplifier near the hot tubes.  This way it can be plugged into to either side.   You can also plug two headphones in at the same time this way should you want to listen with someone.

Steve
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Genpattonjames
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Re: NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon.
Reply #20 - 01/22/13 at 21:00:24
 
I just spoke to Steve today regarding this amp. What a great guy to talk to. Down to earth and very likeable. Thanks Steve for filling me in on the new Taboo!
I do have a question about the new Taboo, what type of tubes will it use? I am going to put my name down for one of these and am interested in doing some tube hunting before I receive the amp!
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« Last Edit: 01/22/13 at 21:01:01 by Genpattonjames »  
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markv
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Re: NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon.
Reply #21 - 01/23/13 at 16:59:01
 
Steve -

Will the balanced XLR outputs be an option?  My reason for asking is if you only use a single ended cable with your Planar headphones then you can connect to one of the headphone connections near the back on either side.   If the XLR outputs are options, then would you then move the meters up towards the front?
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« Last Edit: 01/23/13 at 17:15:40 by markv »  
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Pale Rider
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Re: NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon.
Reply #22 - 01/28/13 at 19:06:02
 
Dibs, sign me up, whatever. I love my LCD-2s on my Taboo, fed by the Ultra. And I love them on the Cavalli Liquid Fire. This should best of/better than both. And I really love the prospect of two listeners at once. Don't need it often, but when you want it, it is very nice.

Props Steve.
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Decware: Ultra | Torii MKIII [2] | SE84ZS | Taboo MkIII Sources: Synology 1812+ | Baetis Revolution | PWD DAC MKII | Lumin Network Player | Mytek 192 | Oppo 105 DSP: DEQX Mate | Emotiva Outputs: ERR [6] + Servo Subs | LCD-2 & other cans
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polys
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Re: NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon.
Reply #23 - 02/01/13 at 11:04:59
 
Pale Rider how would you describe the difference in sounds between the Taboo & LF?
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Pale Rider
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Re: NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon.
Reply #24 - 02/01/13 at 14:37:50
 
There's a brief squeal when you first turn on the LF, utterly absent from the Taboo. After fiddling with everything, you realize it was just your wallet. Wink

Seriously, I think I posted here or on Head-Fi some of my initial listening impressions, which are probably almost 2 years old now. I haven't done any side-by-side, because the LF stays at the office with the LCD-2, and the Taboo is at home with my modified Fostex [known as, I kid you not, Thunderpants; mine are made of Kingwood], and a pair of headphile Terminator v4. I enjoy all three headphones on both amps, but have kept the LCD-2s at the office with the LF, because they are ready to go on fairly short notice and generate less heat. At home, though, the Thunderpants are actually more comfortable to wear for longer periods, and I have the Taboo set up to be fed by my Ultra, so I can ride the gain. That combo right there is why the Taboo is at home, and the LF at the office. The longer listening time is why I opted for the Thunderpants and Terminators at home.

Without the benefit of a preamp into the Taboo, here is my recollection synopsis while playing LCD-2s:

1. LF faster, with very good cymbals, exceptional transients, very crisp decay; can almost sound zingy compared to Taboo's softer edges, but likely more accurate;

2. Excellent bass control on the LF, definitely a strong suit compared to Taboo which doesn't seem as definitive and, on the Terminators, can sound a bit tubby.

3. Midrange on Taboo fuller without being in your face. Female vocals fantastic, esp. someone like Fiona Apple. Nina Simone, oh man.

4. Detail favors the LF. Listen to something like a hi-res track, or even better, the SACD, from the Allman Brothers at Fillmore. Recording really not very good, and as someone who saw them live before Duane died, I am always trying to hear the extra layers of dual percussionists, and Duane and Dickie's guitars. The LF seems to let me peek into those obscured layers a bit more.

Now, when you pair the Taboo with a preamp, everything changes. The combo of the Ultra/Taboo is pretty effing extraordinary, though on the Terminators, that "tube liquidity" can become "lugubriousness" and can almost be overwhelming, and in conjunction with some of the Terminator's known characteristics, pretty dark. Dire Straits' Brothers in Arms is other-worldly. What I have yet to do with my Ultra is experiment on Taboo-specific tube pairings on the Ultra outputs that feed the Taboo. I think that could be nailed to be the headphone combo of all time, and even better, easily changeable depending on your choice of headphones.

It will be interesting to see whether the new input stage will simply make a preamp unnecessary or actually make it counterproductive. Right now, the synergy between the current Taboo and the Ultra is very impressive. It is overall, the most seductive combo I have ever heard. Maybe not the most accurate, but then, my most accurate wife was also not my most seductive.

I am jazzed about the prospect of a true headphone-oriented Taboo with the ability to play for two listeners at the same time, along with the planar-oriented updates Steve has described. This will be killer. And I think the guys at Head-Fi will go ape$hit.

Steve, seriously, put me on the list; i don't want to be in line once the word gets out over there.
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Decware: Ultra | Torii MKIII [2] | SE84ZS | Taboo MkIII Sources: Synology 1812+ | Baetis Revolution | PWD DAC MKII | Lumin Network Player | Mytek 192 | Oppo 105 DSP: DEQX Mate | Emotiva Outputs: ERR [6] + Servo Subs | LCD-2 & other cans
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deucekazoo
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Re: NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon.
Reply #25 - 02/01/13 at 19:19:25
 
"[known as, I kid you not, Thunderpants; mine are made of Kingwood], "

Pale Rider,
Can you let me know how the Thunderpants compare to the LCD-2s?
I have a pair of Paduak Thunderpants and love them. I would really like to know how they compare to the LCD-2s.
Right now I run mine off a Zen Head with a Z-box inbetween.
Thanks,
John
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Pale Rider
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Re: NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon.
Reply #26 - 02/01/13 at 19:40:44
 
Jon inquired:
Quote:
Pale Rider,
Can you let me know how the Thunderpants compare to the LCD-2s?
I have a pair of Paduak Thunderpants and love them. I would really like to know how they compare to the LCD-2s.
Right now I run mine off a Zen Head with a Z-box inbetween.
Thanks,
John

John, I like the Thunderpants very much. Gary did an amazing job on these cans. Out of the box, the Fostex is not bad, but it is not in the same league as the LCD-2. But following Gary's work, it is in that realm, though I think the LCD-2 is better. The LCD-2 is smoother, and I find the detail less fatiguing. Thus the Thunderpants benefit more from the Taboo's liquidity. My recollection is the LCD-2 has better bass control. I haven't done a side-by-side in a long, long time though.
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Decware: Ultra | Torii MKIII [2] | SE84ZS | Taboo MkIII Sources: Synology 1812+ | Baetis Revolution | PWD DAC MKII | Lumin Network Player | Mytek 192 | Oppo 105 DSP: DEQX Mate | Emotiva Outputs: ERR [6] + Servo Subs | LCD-2 & other cans
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HPDJ
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Re: NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon.
Reply #27 - 02/01/13 at 23:15:10
 
Quote:
Maybe not the most accurate, but then, my most accurate wife was also not my most seductive


hahahahahahaha!  ;D
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Steve Deckert
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Re: NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon.
Reply #28 - 02/02/13 at 03:02:57
 


Quote:
It will be interesting to see whether the new input stage will simply make a preamp unnecessary or actually make it counterproductive.


A very delicate surgery that was...  it was important to me... to NOT make a great preamp counterproductive... I just wanted to bump it a bit so that it would be more than dandy by itself, and it is.   I also like my decision to change the input tube from the 12AU7 to the 6N1P / 6922.  6N1P being warmer and smoother and the 6922 being more focused and articulate.  Giving you a wider range of sound within that ideal mu.

Parts are starting to come in, the chassis are done and beautiful.  I hope to start building them in March.

Steve
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polys
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Re: NEW LCD2 Headphone amplifier coming soon.
Reply #29 - 02/02/13 at 08:49:23
 
LOL @ the squeal and accuracy comments PR
Thanks for the info too.

I already ordered the Taboo a few weeks ago, then read about the mkiii and promptly cancelled.
Cant wait Steve. As soon as that "BUY" button appears I'll be clickin!
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« Last Edit: 02/02/13 at 10:09:30 by polys »  
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