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GeoffreyW's picture
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Graham Slee Novo kit

My current headphone listening is done via Grado SR80s, from the headphone socket of my Denon DRW 650 cassette recorder, and I was considering the purchase of the Graham Slee Novo/DAK kit amp, because it's in my price range, and more affordable than the Novo. And it also promises Graham Slee quality. 

Firstly, would it be much of an inprovement on my present set-up, and secondly, as I have a Naim 72/140, and want to listen to all my sources - CD, phono, tv, and tuner, I assume that it could be connected to the tape socket currently used by the Denon, but would the Novo, which has phono in/out, need the out sockets be connected to anything, or just left unconnected, please?

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Re: Graham Slee Novo kit

Yeh u should notice a vast improvement ,for starters u wont get any distorsion ,if the headphone socket is anything like the one on my nad amp it distorts a lotÿ

U should also notice a much better all round sound as Graham slee headphone are supposed to be some of the best u can get .Those Grados will be crying out for a better signal

And yes u can connect like u want toÿ any piece of equipment thats got left/right phono out sockets .The idea of haveing 2 sets on the back of the Gs amp is to do with the tape out ,u are basicly wireing the amp in series ,if u see what i mean, u are not looseing ÿthe phono outputs{tapeout} on the back of ur amp ,as the outputs on the back of the Gs amp take there place {the outputs on the Gs amp can be left disconnected unless u want to use theÿ tapeout for ur tape player}


Mark

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Re: Graham Slee Novo kit

The big benefits of a dedicated headphone amplifier over standard "headphones" sockets is that they are designed for the main function of giving you the best possible sound from your headphones. It may be argued that "headphones" sockets on most amplifiers are last minute additions included to bump up the feature count - with the exception of any with a dedicated (i.e separate) internal HA.

Headphone amps are designed to drive a range of headphones and often do a better job with more demanding models. They also benefit from having their own power supply and enclosure.

As with anything though, its always worth having a listen as the quality of headphones sockets can vary quite a bit. Novo has the benefit as well of having input/output rather than 2 inputs so can be "daisy chained" in your source as an alternative to the tape out connections.

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Re: Graham Slee Novo kit

Just seen your post in the Sound Advice section of the Feb 2011 mag.

If you take a look at my useful threads (see signature), you'll seen that I wrote up my own experience of making the Novo.

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Re: Graham Slee Novo kit

....although it seems that you've gone for the Little Dot III. Proabably just as well, as the DIY bug may have struck.

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Re: Graham Slee Novo kit

Greetings, PJPro. Yes, I was seduced by the promise of valve amp sound, something which I've always wondered about. And it looks quite sexy, too. After some consideration and debate, I decided that I'd always wonder whether the Little Dot was as good as the reviews said and what I was missing. Must say that so far, I'm extremely happy with the sound. I'm now wondering whether it would be feasible to try it as a pre-amp, into my Naim 140, but connections could be problematical, I think? I've tried connecting the LD to the tape out of my 72, and also direct from my AAAA5, via SHB Avatar, and the jury's still out. I have a Flashback cable to try, yet. I wish I could afford to achieve this sound quality from my speakers, though, to share it with others. It's a real sonic sensation (sic) or experience. I'm jealous of those who can afford higher quality equipment. It must be marvellous !

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