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SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5 (Read 2511 times)
pursuitofnow
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SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
04/25/17 at 19:18:56
 
Wondering if anyone has thoughts or could explain the sound differences between these two amps. Seem similar power wise. Is it mainly the voltage regulation?
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ANALOG: Thorens VN-150, 2M Black, ZP3, ZSTAGE
DIGITAL: Apple TV, Moon 230HAD, ZROCK2
AMP + SPEAKERS: SE84UFO, Omega Super 3 HO XRS, DeepOmega 8
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Rivieraranch
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #1 - 04/26/17 at 05:31:48
 
You are basically asking for a comparisone between the Zen Monoblocks and the Rachel. I had a Rachel and didn't like it. The amp was too smooth and mellow. Its gain characteristics were such that it began clipping at higher volumes. The Zen I had on the other hand was nice and lively, never clipped and gave that wonderful Zen presentation. The voltage regulation on the monoblocks is very worthwhile. I would go with the Blocks. With 4ohm speakers the Zen will play louder than Rachel. She is more compatible with 8ohm speakers. With 4ohm speakers  she only puts out around 3 watts. Also the Blocks will give you a great sense of stereo separation. I first experienced this with my dual mono Mini Tori.
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SE84UFO; ZSTAGE; HR-1 SPEAKERS; TECHNICS SL1200MK2 KAB MODDED TT; AH! NJOE TJOEB CDP; MARANTZ 2226B; SENNHEISER HD-580 headphones
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jorgen
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #2 - 04/26/17 at 12:10:09
 
I'm sorry I can't compare and there are few who have these new mono blocks. They might be pretty similar to the earlier model,  but still a significant difference. I haven't heard the Rachel.

You can't go wrong with the MBs (probably not with Rachel either I guess) but these amps are very exciting
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Rivieraranch
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #3 - 04/26/17 at 20:49:40
 
Since you already have a Zen amp, the blocks are the ultimate refinement of that design. You will experience darker backgrounds on account of the voltage regulation and better stereo separation. You may be able to use shorter speaker wires. The blocks end up with a bit more power than the stereo Zen amp. You would have to decide which bias you want the input to have as the Blocks don't have a bias switch as the stereo Zen amp.  
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SE84UFO; ZSTAGE; HR-1 SPEAKERS; TECHNICS SL1200MK2 KAB MODDED TT; AH! NJOE TJOEB CDP; MARANTZ 2226B; SENNHEISER HD-580 headphones
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Lin
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #4 - 04/26/17 at 22:42:46
 
The mono amps are 2.7w and Rachael is 5.8w, hard to say if it will make a difference in your system.
I think the output of amps with UFO transformers is the same at 4 and 8 ohms, if switched to match the speakers.

$2400/pair vs. $1500
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Rivieraranch
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #5 - 04/26/17 at 23:52:11
 
The UFO transformers changed the game regarding output. I was thinking of how they were before the impedance switch and UFO transformers. With efficient speakers either amp will get loud enough. However the Zen platform and the Rachel platform are very different. I've owned both so I can attest. The question is whether Rachel is "different" as in better, or just different is a personal call.
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SE84UFO; ZSTAGE; HR-1 SPEAKERS; TECHNICS SL1200MK2 KAB MODDED TT; AH! NJOE TJOEB CDP; MARANTZ 2226B; SENNHEISER HD-580 headphones
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jorgen
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #6 - 04/27/17 at 13:50:44
 
Bias switch can be added for the mono amps for 150$. Glad i added that option
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Rivieraranch
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #7 - 04/27/17 at 18:12:21
 
I personally preferred the hot setting on my Zen so I would order mine biased hot, not the switch.
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SE84UFO; ZSTAGE; HR-1 SPEAKERS; TECHNICS SL1200MK2 KAB MODDED TT; AH! NJOE TJOEB CDP; MARANTZ 2226B; SENNHEISER HD-580 headphones
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Lon
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #8 - 04/27/17 at 18:39:12
 
Yes, we're all different. I've always preferred the laid back position on any Decware amp, but it's nice to have both options really as rooms and surrounding components can change. And it can help resale.
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HR-1,ZP3,ZTPRE,ZBIT,ZROCK2,SE84UFO3-25, Taboo MkIV;PS Audio: Soloist SE, DMP+DSD, P10, PowerBases, XStream Statemt spk cb, AC-12 power cds; Mapleshade:SamsonV2+V3; Oppo UDP-205;VooDoo Cremona +Amati,Iso-Pods;MD90-T SE tuner; headphones: Oppo PM-1,Audeze LCD-2
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pursuitofnow
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Posts: 213
Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #9 - 05/07/17 at 18:10:47
 
I have compared my SE84UFO (with copper foil caps) to a friends Rachael (non jupiter caps) and I prefer my amp. The speakers are very efficient at 98db, and I feel the zen suits my listening preferences more. The Rachael seemed masked or veiled in comparison. At least to my ears.

Sounds like there wouldn't be much of a volume difference between the mono block version and my amp. I'm not even sure I need more volume, though I'm curious, I don't want to give up the characteristics the zen gives me. It is an amazing amp. I was thinking the mono blocks would give a little more volume.
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ANALOG: Thorens VN-150, 2M Black, ZP3, ZSTAGE
DIGITAL: Apple TV, Moon 230HAD, ZROCK2
AMP + SPEAKERS: SE84UFO, Omega Super 3 HO XRS, DeepOmega 8
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Rivieraranch
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Posts: 1499
Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #10 - 05/07/17 at 18:48:29
 
You order those monoblocks, Boy! Now you hear for yourself the Rachel and how laid back it is. Zen is where it is at!
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SE84UFO; ZSTAGE; HR-1 SPEAKERS; TECHNICS SL1200MK2 KAB MODDED TT; AH! NJOE TJOEB CDP; MARANTZ 2226B; SENNHEISER HD-580 headphones
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FullRangeMan
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #11 - 05/09/17 at 13:16:51
 
Hi all,
Do the power transformer from these amps have the same core weight?
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DBC
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #12 - 05/09/17 at 17:28:58
 
FullRangeMan,

Saw a couple of your posts suggesting possible concern for the UFO transformers. I have a 15 year old Zen Select and a 1 year old Zen UFO. I leave my UFO "ON" for days / weeks at a time, no issues. In my opinion the UFO sounds a bit louder compared to the Select. This may be due to the added clarity of the UFO?

Recently Palomino, Lonely Raven and I listened to Pal's Rachael and LR's UFO in Pal's room. I thought the UFO played a bit louder despite the published power differential.

Some of the difference may be that the Rachael requires a 2.5 volt input source to come up to full power where the UFO only requires a 2.0 volt input to reach full output power?

It would be natural to assume a 6 watt amp will play noticeably louder than a 2 watt amp. I don't think this is necessarily the case when comparing these two amps back to back.



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Main System: Oppo BDP-105D, SE84UFO amp, Omega Super Alnico Monitors, Twin Custom SLAB 15's (Low Frequency Open Baffle).
Room #2: Oppo BDP-83SE, SE84CS amp, Omega Super 3i Monitors, Twin Custom SLAB 12's (Low Frequency Open Baffle).
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Rivieraranch
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Re: SE84UFO3 vs SE34I.5
Reply #13 - 05/10/17 at 03:02:42
 
You are right because the Rachel will clip before it reaches full volume whereas the Zen will not.
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SE84UFO; ZSTAGE; HR-1 SPEAKERS; TECHNICS SL1200MK2 KAB MODDED TT; AH! NJOE TJOEB CDP; MARANTZ 2226B; SENNHEISER HD-580 headphones
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