Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o

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flintstone

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #20 on: 26 Nov 2007, 12:39 am »
I had an H2O Fire preamp in my system last year, on loan for two weeks.... I thought it an outstanding preamp. I've never heard any of the amps.


Dave

mr_bill

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #21 on: 26 Nov 2007, 03:30 am »
I had an H2O Fire preamp in my system last year, on loan for two weeks.... I thought it an outstanding preamp. I've never heard any of the amps.


Dave

Did the fire preamp have remote volume, volume display?  the pictures on the website cast a shadow on the front of the preamp and are not very good.
Does anyone know the price of the fire?
Thanks,
Bill

Zero

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #22 on: 26 Nov 2007, 03:38 am »
Mr_Bill -  The production FIRE will have a remote control.  There will be no volume display (call it a 'purist' approach)..  The price will be in the 5-6k range (not yet 100% determined).


muralman1

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #23 on: 26 Nov 2007, 04:36 pm »
Zero -

I hope you won't be offended by a little advice born of 2 years experience with Henry's critters.

I have the Fire, and H2O monos. I can say this without flinching, what you put through these two amplifying units is what you hear. Although I could find very little on your Arcam. there may be a problem. I have had yet an over sampling CDP that didn't sound contrived. The highs always seemed forced, and astringent. Maybe your unit will fare better.

Your power cords are iffy. Zu calls them, self shielding. Outside speaker cables, class D owners have found up-grade power cords make the most difference, and the difference is not small. Again, they just may have the requisite shielding.

I doubt the conventional Monarch amps will have the clarity where you can hear upstream defects. I haven't heard a conventional amp that does. When I was running Pass Labs X-600 amps, I couldn't tell the difference between power cords, and CDPs were a matter of taste.

I preferred my non-oversampling Audio-Note DAC over other CDPs, but it didn't occur to me how necessary it would become when I bought Henry's amps and preamp. Through lots of trials, I found speaker leads should be bare, ultra thin and wide.

I commonly hear, "Class D is in it's infancy." Quite to the contrary, it is our understanding on how to get the best out of class D that is in it's infancy.

« Last Edit: 27 Nov 2007, 12:54 am by muralman1 »

Zero

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #24 on: 1 Jan 2008, 10:21 pm »
Ok Boys - the comparison is up!  Check it out at;  www.affordableaudio.org - Jan Issue! For this particular review, I decided to structure it in a very unorthodox way in an effort to make the read a bit more straight-forward and direct.

Vince - Your feedback is welcome. Ultimately, there is only so much expendable cash I can throw at this hobby. I have to work with what I've got. At the end of the day, my concern is being able to ascertain, within a good degree of accuracy, what a product can and cannot do. Throughout the review process, I've kept in very, very close contact with Henry to assure that all I experienced was right in line with the amp. I give every manufacturer the same treatment. The power cords aren't the best... neither is the source. I'll give you that. Nonetheless, I am able to extract enough performance/resolution from them to give me a very solid idea on how these things perform.

muralman1

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #25 on: 3 Jan 2008, 07:47 pm »
 :thumb:

Sean, that was a truthful, and surprisingly positive review of Henry's H2O. I say surprising, because I am use to reviewers not understanding class D's special requirements. You were afforded a really big step up in understanding when you coupled the H2O with the Fire. I promise you, just about any other preamp out there would have mucked up the sound. They, nearly to the last one, exhibit some negative. Although I liked what I read, I know how tubes in the CDP bring out all the true acoustic instrument timbre in the H2O you missed. As you know, it is the tubes located in the Monarchy that affords it pleasing color.

From what I can gather, your CDP is well thought of and has been compared favorably to other popular brands. I have a tubed CDP. Just like a sprinkle of salt awakens a good winter time Mulligan stew, that bit of, "Tube color," works it's presence magic on the H2O in the same manner that you enjoyed with the Monarchy.

Did you use the Fire preamp with the Monarchy? They make their own preamp. I would think the Fire gives any amp a big boost in most judgement categories.

Thanks for a report of your fine trial run of Henry's creations.

Vince

Zero

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #26 on: 3 Jan 2008, 09:13 pm »
Vince,

Thanks for the comments. Yep - the 'FIRE' is a bad-ass component. It is one of the most natural sounding pre-amplifier's I've come across. The sense of scale that thing delivers is astounding.

As one would expect - The FIRE made for a great match with the Signature 100. As one may not expect - it was an even better fit with the Monarchy mono's. Henry wasn't surprised at all.  In fact, he suggested I give the affordable Transcendant Ground Grid a whirl, a unit he feels is a wonderful match with his amps. Unfortunately, I never had the chance to try out his suggestion - I'll just have to take his word for it. There are plenty of great pre-amplifiers that compliment the Signature 100... such as the Blue Circle BC3, or the Lamm LL2 Deluxe.

Bob Wilcox

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #27 on: 4 Jan 2008, 12:48 am »
Sean

I recall you had the input impedance of the H20 listed as 100 Kohms. Is that a misprint? The other H20 models have an input impedance of 10 Kohms.

Bob

Zero

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #28 on: 4 Jan 2008, 02:11 am »
Bob - Good catch.  That inflated spec is brought to you by my lazy fingers...   :lol:.  Like the rest of the gear, the Signature 100 has an input impedance of 10 Kohms. Time to e-mail Mark again..   :lol:

Affordable$$Audio

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #29 on: 4 Jan 2008, 02:49 am »
Jeez Zero, now I got to work again.  I think you need to change your nickname to "Beavis" :thumb:

Zero

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #30 on: 4 Jan 2008, 03:12 am »
Hey, at least you're kept busy old man!  :icon_lol:

muralman1

Re: Upcoming (H2O and Monarchy) amplifier compar-o
« Reply #31 on: 13 Jul 2009, 12:15 am »
I had to report here I finally took care of my weakest link, that being the all important source. I built an Audio Note DAC 2.1 kit. It sounded more resolving and much more pleasant with strident music. On the whole the sound was polite.

Then, I sent the DAC to Henry. It came back transformed into the most natural sounding source I ever heard. I have heard an Audio Note 4.1 on my system. By natural, I meant, without inhibition, the source handles every disc, from Andrea Giuffredi and his in your lap crazy jazz, to Pepe Romano playing Bach. My system is at end game.