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ZP3 Reviews (Read 8055 times)
Barnharty
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ZP3 Reviews
01/26/17 at 19:50:40
 
Does anyone know of any online reviews besides the Tone Audio one? I'm feeling like I'm ready to make leap and purchase one based on his much I love my SE84UFO2, but I'd like read more opinions before I spend such a large amount of money.

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Lon
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #1 - 01/26/17 at 20:59:58
 
The opinions of all of us on the forum that love the ZP3 are not good enough for you? Smiley LOL
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HR-1,ZTPRE,ZBIT,ZROCK2,SE84UFO3-25th x2, CSP3-25th.Taboo Mk IV;Rega RP3 all GrooveTracer mods;PSAudio:PST+DSD,P15,NPC,PowerBases,AC-12 pwr cbls,Reference spkrcbls; Mapleshade SamsonV3;VooDoo:Cremona+Amati interconnects, IsoPods; headphones:Sennheiser HD800S,ZMF Or
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Barnharty
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #2 - 01/26/17 at 23:55:51
 
Haha, no just checking if the was anything else out there. One of my favorite things about buying a new piece of equipment is doing all the research beforehand. I've definitely scoured this forum and you're the main guy that's got me sold on the ZP3 Smiley
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Lon
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #3 - 01/27/17 at 00:22:51
 
Well, I definitely don't have an unbiased view. I LOVE the ZP3. I think the Tone Audio and the  impressions shared here on this forum are most of what you may find. You may want to look at audio circle.com . . . they may have some owners talking there. . . .
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HR-1,ZTPRE,ZBIT,ZROCK2,SE84UFO3-25th x2, CSP3-25th.Taboo Mk IV;Rega RP3 all GrooveTracer mods;PSAudio:PST+DSD,P15,NPC,PowerBases,AC-12 pwr cbls,Reference spkrcbls; Mapleshade SamsonV3;VooDoo:Cremona+Amati interconnects, IsoPods; headphones:Sennheiser HD800S,ZMF Or
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pursuitofnow
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #4 - 01/27/17 at 00:52:09
 
It is fantastic. You will not be disappointed.
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VPI Classic Signature | ZP3 | ZSTAGE
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ZBIT | ZROCK2 | SE84UFO3
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Jasondw1971
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #5 - 01/27/17 at 01:40:40
 
I have a Budgie now.  Would love to hear how the ZP3 compares against the Budgie as well as other phono stages.

Any inputs?
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Barnharty
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #6 - 01/27/17 at 01:42:16
 
I'm also curious about this. Right now I'm using a Little Bear tube phono stage. A friend of mine has a budgie and he loves it.
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effluviography
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #7 - 01/27/17 at 02:00:18
 
I'm not great at audio descriptions but I have both a Budgie and a ZP3. The ZP3 is in my main system with a Mini-Torii (v1) and the Budgie is in my second system with a SE84CKC. Different tables, but both have Ortofon Bronze cartridges and the speakers are each Omega RS5 based models.

The budgie is nice and with NOS Amperex 6922 I think it does a good job of creating crisp highs, clear mids and strong, well defined bass. It is a good preamp. However, the ZP3 is a clear step up. All frequencies are better defined, while the sound is musical (not clinical, but with a lot of detail) and there is a noticeably more pronounced texture (hard to describe, but it feels to me like texture). This makes my digital sources sound tame in comparison. Vinyl on this setup is the best stuff I've heard in my little audio world.

If I could afford it, I'd upgrade the budgie. As it is my ZP3 has the standard caps and was purchased used. I will point out that I have rolled a bunch of stuff through the ZP3 and now have something that is absolutely incredible (in order from front to back: Amperex Bugle Boy 12ax7, Mullard Long Plate 12ax7, Telefunken 12au7, Raytheon 5u4 and RCA 0A3).

The budgie is good, but not great. Once you hear the ZP3, you'll hear the difference. If you find the right NOS tubes, it is quite magical.

If you'd like more info, I'll certainly try to answer.
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// Mini-torii, CSP-3, ZP-3, Pioneer PLX-1000, Ortofon 2m Black, Denafrips Ares 2 & Iris DDC, Cambridge Audio CXU, Omega CAM's & Deep-Hemp Sub, ZMF Atticus, Emotiva CMX-6, Decware Styx, DHC1, DHC3 & IC's, Sky Audio Cables, Supra Exc. USB, Roon & Mac Mini Server //
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Jasondw1971
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #8 - 01/27/17 at 02:01:06
 
I almost bought the little bear.  I read to much about hum problems, so I decided to spend the money on a Budgie.  The Budgie is very detailed.  The only thing I have to compare it to is my Mapleshade HH Scott.  The Scott has better bass with its 12AX7's, but not as detailed.  Iv been thinking of the ZP3 due the gain on the budgie.  Its not very good.  I have to turn my preamp up over half way to get a decent volume.
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Barnharty
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #9 - 01/27/17 at 02:16:34
 
Thanks for the comparison and description, Eff. I think I get a pretty good picture of what you're saying. By "texture" do you mean the timbre of instruments sound more real to life? Or that maybe you're listening to something real, as opposed to a flat recording?

Jason, I bet you made the right choice with the Budgie. The Little Bear sounds pretty good for the price. It's really full sounding and easy to listen to for hours at a time. There's certainly a Goldilocks zone for placement, to avoid him. I can still hear a slight hum between tracks and usually a local radio station it's picked up.  :o
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metropolis7
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #10 - 01/27/17 at 03:50:56
 

Texture, that is spot-on. I notice it all the time on the ZP3. What it means to me is actually hearing the wood-on-metal of a drumstick-on-cymbal. The friction of a gut string as it's being pulled and released by an index finger. A sense of the actual physical properties of the people and instruments responsible for the sound.

I will add to that "truly grain-free". I didn't think my old phono stage added grain until I heard the remove it. "Haze" "grit" "glare" there are lots of similar words for it. But what you'll hear is an airy, extended treble that is very pure and inspires you to keep turning up the music.
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effluviography
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #11 - 01/27/17 at 04:15:41
 
I think Metropolis7 gets it right. There is something more real about the music, more layered. Texture is what it feels like. And very true about the lack of grain. The music feels very analog, very alive because of the texture but as my partner pointed out, it still sounds as detailed as the digital stuff (so you don't lose anything moving from the digital to vinyl). It is not that it feels like you're necessarily at a live event, but that the music is alive in front of you (and you can hear a lot of subtlety, not just detail, if that makes sense). NOS tubes just make it that much better.

I would definitely recommend the ZP3. If on more of a budget, I would also recommend the Budgie. I got both the budgie and ZP3 used because of my budget (most of my stuff is used or demo).

That being said, if you can, go for the ZP3 as it is pretty amazing.
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// Mini-torii, CSP-3, ZP-3, Pioneer PLX-1000, Ortofon 2m Black, Denafrips Ares 2 & Iris DDC, Cambridge Audio CXU, Omega CAM's & Deep-Hemp Sub, ZMF Atticus, Emotiva CMX-6, Decware Styx, DHC1, DHC3 & IC's, Sky Audio Cables, Supra Exc. USB, Roon & Mac Mini Server //
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Barnharty
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #12 - 01/27/17 at 05:09:56
 
I'll be putting my order in for the ZP3 next week  ;D
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Jasondw1971
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #13 - 01/27/17 at 05:42:45
 
I'm  still waiting on a CSP3, but from what Iv read tonight, I think a ZP3 is in order. Cheesy
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hdrider
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Re: ZP3 Reviews
Reply #14 - 01/28/17 at 14:41:24
 
When I started rebuilding our system, the ZP3 was the first thing I had my heart set on and I am SO happy I ordered it. I just need to feed it with a better cartridge now. Order it, play the heck out of it and happy listening. You will not be disappointed, Chris.
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CSP3, Rachael, ZP3, ZMC 1, Oppo BDP-93, Sota Star TT w/ FR-64, Dynavector D17 DX Moving coil, Omega 7XRS Mk 2 walnut, DeepOmega 8 sub, Morrow Audio PH3 and MA3 IC's, Gamma Electrostatic phones.
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