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09/22/23 at 11:42:48†




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Decware // Reference ZMF OTL? (Read 529 times)
hmss007
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Decware // Reference ZMF OTL?
08/02/23 at 16:42:50
 
I just watched Zach's video on the new Decware // Reference ZMF OTL that is based on the CSP3, I'm wondering if anyone has purchased or had any experiences with it yet.
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JL
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Re: Decware // Reference ZMF OTL?
Reply #1 - 08/28/23 at 04:44:37
 
I was on here looking for tube rolling advice and saw this thread, registered to post this hope it helps someone!

Speaker setup: PC USB or WiiM Mini optical to Denafrips Pontus II to ZMF Decware Reference OTL to Audiolab 6000A to Klipsch Forte IV

I ordered this thinking it will be a good preamp option for the SE84UFO25 that is on order, but still waiting on that to arrive. This is my first Decware (/ZMF?) piece and first higher end amp/preamp so please understand that my impressions may differ from someone who has more experience with tube equipment. Prior to this the only tube piece Iíve used is a Schiit Valhalla 2 as a headphone amp and speaker pre-amp.

These are impressions from day 3 of having the amp:

The Audiolab 6000A in my opinion is a bit dry and boring listen, adding the new OTL preamp Iíve noticed greatly improved soundstage- deeper and wider. Certain sounds come out smoothly and have that ďliquidĒ feel. The combination of these two traits to me, makes things sound much more natural and fun, without any loss of detail. The speakers disappear more and things donít sound so forced.

Headphone impressions: These days I donít spend much time on headphones but comparing to Schiit Valhalla 2 and a Qudelix 5K, it is obviously VASTLY superior, and for the price of course it should be. Same characteristics- natural, smooth, spacious, detailed. I found comparing my HD800 vs HD650 on these, while the HD650 sounded great, the more revealing HD800 really loved this amp. Oddly enough I find it very easy to sit back and relax with the HD800 on my head and become immersed, my body and mind turning into jelly, which is a total surprise to me. I love the HD800 but typically find it fatiguing.

Overall VERY happy with my purchase though it stretched my budget a bit and I was nervous that I would find it being a small upgrade but that is not the case, it has completely transformed the sound of my system. Iíve always felt the Forte IV were missing something, seems that Iíve finally found ďitĒ, and now Iím even more excited for the SE84UFO25 that is hopefully about to ship soon!
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LiquidBlue
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Re: Decware // Reference ZMF OTL?
Reply #2 - 08/29/23 at 02:31:32
 
Congrats on the Decware preamp! I got a used CSP3 about a year before I got my amp. It was paired with a Schiit Aegir and sounded amazing. Sending it back for full anniversary upgrades took things up another big notch. I got a cheap 3 watt tube amp to try, to see how a low powered SET would do in my system, while I waited for my Zen amp. Sounded really great, but things were going to take a big jump forward. I got my SE84UFO25 about two months ago. Iíve got a little over 500 hours on it now and all I can say is strap inÖ youíre in for a real treat! Just give it about 250-300 hours to break in before forming any real impressions.
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Mofi Ultradeck w/ Hana ML>Sutherland Insight>Bluesound Node N130>CSP3-A>SE84UFO25>Energy Veritas>REL T7i
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hmss007
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Re: Decware // Reference ZMF OTL?
Reply #3 - 08/30/23 at 18:04:20
 
I took the plunge and have been listening to my Decware // Reference ZMF OTL amp for a couple weeks now. I've been using the tubes Zach included and it sounds great. I'm using both my ZMF Atrium Open and ZMF Eikon Closed headphones.

I'd been looking at Decware for quite some time as a ZMF owner, so the this amp was a perfect combination for me. So much so, that I'm selling my ampsandsound Kenzie Ovation v2 that I paired with my headphones a couple years ago. (It sound amazing too, I just like the Decware//ZMF amp better).

As a bonus, I didn't know I needed the preamp feature. I'm using that to drive my Omega speakers with an Inspire by Dennis Had Kleen-Sweep amp - so tubes, tubes & more tubes. The Decware brings out the best of the Omega speakers and gives me some additional kick with the sound.

Overall, very happy with my investment.
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