Gustard H20 Balanced Headphone Ampsearch

Gustard H20 Balanced Headphone Amp

Gustard H20 Balanced Headphone Amp

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Missed the last drop and kicking myself for not having pulled the trigger. Any idea if/when this will drop again?
Cheers
How does it compare with AudioGD 1Amp?
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I will wait for your review. Thanks!
Did u review?
So after much research i finally bit the bullet and bought this as my endgame balanced headphone amp. Does anyone know if there is any popping or noise that comes through the headphones when adjusting volume? I know there is clicking from the relays opening and closing on the amp itself but does any audible popping go through the headphones?
How does it compare with Aune S7?
Yeah, so, the output impedance is definitely not 200 Ohms LOL
Will the H20A ever be a drop?
The matching DAC-X22 has dropped: https://www.massdrop.com/buy/gustard-dac-x22
FREE volt ?
ascii24
I don't know what this means but it has a voltage selection switch on the back for 115/230V
Massdrop, please contact Gustard to sort out the error in your specs regarding the output impedance. 200 ohms is for the rear XLR line-outs, not the headphone outputs.
No USB input?
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This is just another combo consisting of an amplifier with an integrated DAC inside, like so many others. Albeit likely a very good combo in terms of performance, still it is an amp with an integrated DAC. Where H20 is stand-alone amplifier with its only function being the amplification of analogue sound, nothing else.
Please don't take my response as something that requires responding to back - I am not interested in furthering this discussion as we don't seem to refer to the same thing here, and so I'll refrain from posting back on the subject, no offense meant.
As you wish.
I got mine, but it seems to be behaving strangely... maybe I'm doing something wrong?
In summary, the amp is only producing sound from one channel at a time. The particulars are as follows ...
1) From both 1/4" inputs: a) part way in => sound comes only from left side b) fully in => sound comes only from right side
I tried 3 different headphones with the same results, so it's not the headphones, cable, or plug.
2) From the balanced headphone out, sound comes only from the right side (Yes, I confirmed that the headphone is plugged into the Bal output, and not the Lch or Rch jack.)
It's not a channel balance issue - it's producing either normal sound levels, or zero. In all cases the sound is consistent - it's not intermittent with manipulating either the input or the output plugs. I'm using the RCA inputs, in case that matters (my longer balanced cables haven't arrived yet).
Any suggestions for what might be wrong before I contact customer support?
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Sorry for the delay, had been preoccupied elsewhere...
Yes I did. It turned out to be a cable connection issue at the source, and NOT the amp. The amp is working, and sounds great.
(Which is a good thing, as MD's proposed remedy if it _had_ been the amp involved a refund and waiting for the next drop for a replacement - everyone please be aware that if you _do_ get a bad unit, this seems to be MD's policy).
FL_Guy
Oh, awesome! That's two good pieces of news in one!
I received this amp yesterday it makes enjoyable clicking noises when turned on and when you rotate the volume knob. Will they eventually go away? I hope not.
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Just counted, and it has 64 steps, like the Schiit Ragnarok.
DontDooDad
I'm pleased to learn that enjoyable clicking=quality.
I got a delivery notification today!
I has a tracking number!
Some details about the amp from the Gustard representative: “Hi The output impedance of the main amplifier circuit is less than 0.05 ohms. The common headphone impedance is much larger than this value The "L" output port is used to drive some special low load , To avoid the amplifier circuit working under overload conditions for a long time. “ In sum, this amp should be able for low impedance headphone (may be Ath-W5000 or Final Sonorous VI).
Waiting for next drop. Want to pair it with some low impedance headphones.
I have a question: if there are high and low gain outputs why is there also a gain switch? What does a gain switch do anyway?
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It's dropped twice since march, so I would not be surprised. If you are willing to pay a bit more I believe its on Shenzenaudio.
WESXF
I am not that engaged to have H20. I have one for high impedance headphone whci should be fine with Elex. I use it for K701 which is 62 ohm impedance.
Jump in..., further secure this deal
So I'm thinking about pouncing on this -- currently my main amp is a Darkvoice SE336, which I love. Also tried a CTH which I liked but did not love. Will be driving HD800 and Beyer T1.2. Any advice?
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Thanks WESXF. I am contacting Sparkos. Do you need to do anything other than plop in the replacement using an chip removal tool? Is there soldering involved? Is there a specific model of the SS3602? Is the sound much improved?
airjames
I too vouch for Sparko's opamps wholeheartedly, best opamps I've tried, and I've tried Burson as well as NewClsssD (still have the latter). And yes, go with SS3602, the dual design - you'll need 2 of those, they are expensive but 100% worth it especially if you have really good set of cans. Soundstage is expanded, lows hit deeper with higher overall resolution.
There's no soldering involved, just get a pair of tweezers, pull the OEM ones and insert the new in their place. H20 is a beast, and with discrete opamps like those it delivers some serious sound, I dare say it beats just about anything within $2-2.5K,
P.S. Forgot to mention that you should exercise care when replacing the opamps and make sure the you position them exactly as the original ones were positioned - there's a half-circle notch on one side that should match the opamp's base, or simply note how the OEM were plugged in and plugged the Sparko's the same way.
Have been interested in this amp. Decided to seal the deal.... That makes 3.
TJG-MD
Yaaaay, thank you! It took me a long time to decide in favor of this amp, but now I'm stoked and want to see it happen. Welcome on board!
DontDooDad
Figured it would make someone happy. Looks like great value and I like having socketed op amps. Plus the designer listened (supposedly) to the Cavalli Liquid amps. So interested to see if the amp is cut of the same cloth. If it is, will be heck of a value.
In the next drop, sure!!!! I wonder the difference in front of an Audio GD like Master 9!
Next one seals the deal! Do it! :)
A Gustard rep posted the corrected specs on head-fi.

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WESXF
I'm guessing they took the single-ended output and put a few resistors in it - essentially a built in "impedance adapter".
Yeah, just relaying the confusion :-D
I received the amp last week, and will have it running for another ten days or so before I start evaluating the value proposition here. With that said, right out of the box this thing is really, really good - stands its ground to my heavily modified Yulong Sabre A28 which is awesome. As far as power goes, the main question posted here by many - it drives two planars at once without any effort whatsoever, the volume at about half-way for very loud listen. The cans are MrSpeakers Ether and Alpha Prime, and the later is very much a power hog.
I'll post some impressions in about a couple of weeks, but so far I think it is worth every penny, and then some considering one can swap the OEM opams with discrete ones.
.........
Two weeks later now...
I'm still trying to find time to do side by side comparison with my Yulong A28. Been listening to H20 exclusively for few days now, after having it burn about 300 hrs, and it sounds simply awesome. Awesome! The fullness of the sound is the first thing that jumps out to me, my Ether C which is not exactly a bassy set of cans, produce unbelievably potent lows to the point of rumbling. Soundstage, detail, everything really, rivals the best I've heard. But I realize that even though this amp will make most headphones shine, I'd recommend against spending this kind of money unless one owns truly high resolving headphones - I'm talking HD800 and above. Lesser quality headphones will simply not benefit to the fullest from the amp's ability.
Will post more as I get around to run some tests...
I don't understand why anyone is interested by this Amp !
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The spec just says "Output Impedance: 200 ohms", which would be terrible if it were the front output experience. That's why a lot of people stayed away. Neither Massdrop nor the manufacturer are apparently paying attention to our concerns here or on Head-Fi, otherwise they would have clarified this by now.
DontDooDad
The 200 ohm is actually the output impedance of the xlr preamp output.
It’s the poor translation from the manufacturer that caused this confusion.
This amp is quite popular in China, by looking at the inside of this amp you can tell the build quality of this amp is pretty good.
It is considered one of the best amps you can choose at this price range. I'm guessing the only guy that have joined the drop is a Chinese. This drop apparently has failed, hope next time it will be better after reviews come out.
Sure would love a DAC to pair with all these balanced amps massdrop. Wink wink.
Sure would be a shame if they dropped this particular Mass again.......just sayin'......
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Re: Free gear...yeah, what YOU said, lol. I have an iFi iPhono. It's quite fine. Without being sent a next gen version free for evaluation, that's all I'm saying about it, lol...
HeadphonulusMaximus1
Speaking from experience, you'll have to put some effort into it ;) Like, file a bug or whatever their next campaign is. And actually there's an xDSD tour going on right now, apparently they will give the loaners to randomly drawn participants after.
I received this amp 7 days ago and have already blown a fuse while powering it on for perhaps the 5 time. Upon closer inspection I cannot see any markings to indicate the type of fuse required. There is NO owners manual to consult included or available on-line . Also this amp comes with a VERY poorly fitting power cable. Although the sonic performance of this unit seems promising I certainly have not had enough time to judge it fairly. But these issues I give to you that are considering this as part of your set up.
I should also qualify this by saying I am running this off of a Panamax M 5400-PM Voltage Regulator / power conditioner off the high current out.
UPDATE: Ava (Massdrop Community Support)Feb 14, 6:02 PM PST Hi ,  Thank you for contacting Massdrop, Ava here to assist you. I am really sorry that the amp you received caused you issues and am happy to help. I just reviewed your order and it looks like this product didn't come with a manufacturer's warranty, which would be noted on the product drop page. Since we do not have any inventory in stock, I am only able to offer a refund. Below is a link to the prepaid shipping label you will need to use to return your item to us: Please include the RMA sheet inside the shipping box with your item. If the RMA sheet is not included, it may cause processing delays or refusal at our warehouse. If you're re-using another shipping box for the return shipment, please make sure to remove or cover old shipping labels or stickers. You must use the prepaid UPS label within 14 days, otherwise it will no longer be valid. Once our warehouse notifies us of your return, a refund will be issued to your original payment method. You should receive a confirmation email once this happens. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions or concerns and hope you enjoy the rest of your day. Best regards, Ava For a complete list of our policies and FAQ, please visit the Help Center!
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RRM1
Looks like MD handled this as we would have hoped/expected.
From Head-Fi: "no matter which dealer you are buying from, as long as the product is still under warranty, we will definitely provide product warranty service.
However, when you need a warranty, you must first contact the dealer at the time of purchase. Then they are responsible for shipping the product back to China for repairs.After that we will handle all the rest." (Source: https://www.head-fi.org/threads/gustard-h20-headphone-amp.850661/page-9#post-14129285)
I have a Schiit Mjolnir 2 in backorder now for over 6 months and they keep on changing delivery date. Might jump ship and go for the H20. Seems very capable to drive the Ether C.
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mjolnir 2 now delayed till 6 march on their website, been waiting for mine since september
Love my MZ2. Wouldn't trade it for anything else.
I have an ak24, a pono and an m1. I am tired of swapping cables to change sources. Needed an amp that can handle all with the flick of a switch, ak and pono balanced, m1 single. Here I go in. Hope it worths the price.