Just got back to town one week ago and received the V2 upgrade for my 9SE's. An extremely quick, professional, and painless process. Nuforce really takes care to handle your precious amps carefully through the process. My SE's were basically brand new before the upgrades, and afterward, look perfect. The new faceplate is nice. I like how the V2 is a subtle labeling on the left of the face. Very nice choice there on aesthetics.
My review will come in a few phases. This is the quick initial impressions, early in the break-in process. Let me start by saying what you don't hear in these amps, immediately upon power up. Nothing. I mean, these amps are super quiet. With my 101db Zu Druid's let me tell you, they 'hear' everything. It's really true, and very noticeable improvement, no noise at all. Their is no longer any significant sound, pop, or click upon power up of the amps either.
Musically, the first thing I noticed was a markedly deeper soundstage. Normally this is hard for me to discern, but not after this upgrade. I noticed it right away on Sting's All This Time live recording of his somewhat acoustic/jazz rendition of Roxanne. (AAC Lossless audio via Sonos, out to the CIAudio outboard DAC, then to my Nuforce P-8) A really incredible experience! Also the music presentation was much more forward and detailed. I felt like vocals and instruments really jumped out of the speakers and onto a real soundstage. Most noticeable at this stage of the break-in was in the ADSR. The speed of these amps seem much improved from their already hyper fast action. The attack and decay of notes are super crisp, likely made more discernible by such a low noise floor. The Zu's are so coherent and fast, probably one of the few speakers that can truly keep up with the 9SE V2's and reveal the range and magic of these amps.
The bass notes are even cleaner, and more transient than the 9SE V1's. This is important. I really like deep bass, but for me it must it tight, transient, and clean. The SE V1's were definitely deeper, heavier than the 9.02s that I originally had in my system. The V2's have extended the depth of the bass, while tightening it up at the lowest end of the range as well. The V2's are definitely squeezing a full 35Hz (or lower) out of my crossoverless "1.5 way" Zu's.
Mid's and treble are also much improved. Smoother and more revealed and detailed. I often read people's reviews that claim things like "these amps or pre-amp have tube-like quality to them..." and always wonder how real those claims are. Today I feel like one of those reviewers. I think that the tube-like feel of these amps has to do with the deeper and more detailed soundstage and smoother more forward and detailed mid-treble range. In all, a great combination of improvements that make these my favorite amps, and perfect pairing for my Zu's. Tube-like, but cleaner, more detailed-- and much better in this way.
I'm looking forward to further break-in, and some follow up remarks over the next couple weeks. In summary, if you are considering this upgrade, even at the SE level, it is definitely worth the investment. Big props to Nuforce on this one.