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La Figaro 339 Tube Headphone Amplifier

La Figaro 339 Tube Headphone Amplifier

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Product Description
A follow-up to the highly regarded DarkVoice 337, the La Figaro 339 tube headphone amp has a dual-mono, output-transformerless (or OTL) design that allows the vacuum tubes to drive the headphone directly. The result is a clear, accurate, distortion-free sound and the ability to drive low- and higher-impedance headphones alike Read More

Customer Reviews

4.4
(17 reviews)
5star
(11)
4star
(4)
3star
(1)
2star
(0)
1star
(1)
83% would recommend to a friend
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DareToBe
213
Mar 20, 2019
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What a combo with HD800! Amazing soundstage with warm bass. I enjoy HD800 much more than before.
MichaelAnda
111
Jun 17, 2019
DareToBeAmazing what this amp does for the Sennheiser HD6XX. I own the whole stable of Massdrop built amps and none of them breathe life into the Senn's like the LF339. They do nice things elsewhere, mind you.
Horseknight
179
Dec 1, 2018
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I have owned Darkvoice 336 for a few months and I love it. I received my 339 a few days ago. First of all, 339 is a nice piece of beautiful equipment that is well put together and HEAVY in weight.
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Compared to 336, 339 has a much wider soundstage and more power to drive my Hifiman HE-560. The sound image is much more 3-dimensional from 339. I also find that when I connect 339 to my balanced sound source (TRRS and/or balance XLR outputs) , the image is so clear and filled with pleasant details. This draws the line between 336 and 339. And to me, the extra monetary investment on 339 is so well worth it.
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I really LOVE my 336 which I use almost daily with my Senn HD650, Hifiman 560, and Audeze whenever I have free time to indulge myself. But for the past few days I am surprised to find that 339 is a few obvious steps above 336. I own both and glad I have both.
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The larger 6AS7 tubes were packed in their own small paper boxes and placed on top of 339 when they are all shipped in the same large box. The 339 and its two smaller tubes were nicely packed together inside protective foams. In the photo, I set up my new 339 with my own set of 6AS7 tubes from my tube collection.
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As soon as I plugged in my own set of 6AS7 tubes and let the set warm up, my new 339 sounds AWESOME with many different headphones (low & high ohms)!! Really really love my new La Figaro 339. By the way, the silver 339 looks really nice when mixed with my mainly black color sound gadgets!
audiotubes
9
Dec 23, 2019
HorseknightIf I had to guess I would think the brass lion is a good heatsink ;)
AmJosh
128
Jan 21, 2021
HorseknightI am surprised that you like the pairing of the DV with Hifiman 560. I tried that and result was not good at all. The volume had to be increased quite a bit more than what I was using for HD6XX and still sound was pretty bad. Which tubes do you use? I have currently ordered the Shuguang Treasures, based on discussion in another thread. The sound also improved from stock tube, to Tung Sols that I am currently using.
zenbert
175
Apr 28, 2019
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I bought the LF 339 for work--paired with the Topping D50 as DAC. I'm on the fence between scoring 4 or 5. I'll cover my experience so far and what I think of it. The short version: seems like a terrific amp particularly with quality sound output and reasonably priced but there are a few kinks...
  • > The smell that folks mentioned was very present for the first 2 to 3 hours of operation. Smells like something melted. I had read article on head-fi that mentioned OTK2 tubes are the cause. Not sure but smells like kind of melted adhesive. Unit operates fine however. A feint burn smell persists after the initial few hours. I am getting additional tubes to test the mention about smelly OTK tubes
  • > The 6N5PJ tubes generated loud hum even without 0 volume. Posts online suggests checking cables, swapping tubes, etc. I reseated the tubes, swapped them, changed up USB and RCA cables. No dice. Finally I swapped out the 6N5PJ tube for my spare 6080 tubes and the hum went away completely
  • > LF339 delivers power to the headphone with authority. No issue driving the 200 ohm LCD4 or 300 ohm HD820. Sound delivery/resolution is excellent. No crackling, pop or odd noise artifacts.
  • > The aluminum frame generates significant amount of heat--bordering on hot to touch particularly on the top. Posts online indicated folks deploying fans to cool unit.
My subjective views are the follow -
  • > Definitely ample power for demanding headphones
  • > It's heavy and big so placement/space a consideration. It also gets hot. I think from a construction perspective, it might work better if the box was slightly higher to allow for more space and area that might help with heat management. However, it is already quite big. As a reference, the Woo Audio WA22 remains cool after long operations and also works well with any tube combination
  • > Dual monorail with two volume dial is a bit of love and hate--ability to control each side of the headphone is cool but was initially apprehensive (This thing has two power supplies)
  • > Sound output is excellent and clean. All the headphones produced quality music consistent with my experiences with other combos. The extra juice is definitely welcomed compare with other my amps/dac such as the LCX+SDAC, Audeze Deckard, WA7 fireflies, Chord Mojo, etc. I think folks used to more powerful amps would appreciate this
In sum, I think if you can manage the heat and find the right tube combination for your headphones (without the hiss/hum) then this could be a 5 out of 5 at the price point. The fact that you might need to buy another set or two of tubes could set you back a hundred dollars or more--as a consideration. Would I still buy this if I knew about these kinks? Yes but I'm still concerned about the smell (chemical?) and heat issues which I'll try to hack around with alternate tubes and portable fan. Lastly having the office space for it..
(Edited)
Coho
43
May 7, 2019
zenbertNice review...how does the 339 compare to the wa7’s . I like the wa7’s dead silent backdrop however I think they miss on the tuby syrupy richness of a classic tube sound. Does the 339 give more of that sound signature?
zenbert
175
May 7, 2019
CohoYes the WA7 has a very quiet backdrop in my experiences as well with different tubes. Also the WA7 pairs up quite well with pretty much any headphone. The only exception in my experience was with the HD820 where more power definitely opened it up to more enjoyment. The LF339 is less friendly out of the box in terms of noise from different tubes and headphone combinations. I'm not sure if it's a quality of components, design, or combination of those things. In fact I have just purchased a power conditioner to help normalize any cracking, hum, hiss that one might experience. When the unit works, it's marvelous, but there still are unpredictable occurrences of noise using the same tubes--sometimes quiet, sometimes transient.. Unsure of all and exact causes... The LCD-X and Ether CX seem to work fairly predictably with the 339. As I had mentioned the WA22 is rock solid like the WA7 in terms of backdrop noise rolling tubes. In terms of sound signature, I'd say the 339 does have more distinct sound signature. I think partially on the circuit, and partially the additional power output--tubes selection not withstanding. I wish the unit was built with less drama around noise surprises and varying experiences with different tubes and cables. The very reason that I was ambivalent between the affordable price, sound quality (when working), and the transient hum/hiss like noise with different combo's of tubes and headphones
(Edited)
Coho
43
Jun 27, 2019
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Hi All...playing with my new La Figaro
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Recommends this product? Yes
Major_Infidel
316
Sep 15, 2019
It appears that he’s deployed on a Navy ship, so he probably doesn’t have much choice regarding the furniture. ;-) :-D
Yurio
56
Sep 16, 2019
And I thought I lost my mind,,,,.🙃
MichaelAnda
111
Jun 28, 2019
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This amp pairs incredibly well with Massdrop's Sennheiser HD6XX. Pushes that headphone into another league, IMO. Adds dimension to the transparency/detail champ Sennheisers.
Recommends this product? Yes
MichaelAnda
111
Sep 20, 2019
To answer your question. I highly recommend the La Figaro amp pairing with your HD6XX headphones. I think the pairing is HIGHLY enjoyable and very capable. The pair together costs $820. Pretty good value based on their performance level, IMO. The other Massdrop pairing I find super appealing is the THX AAA 789 driving the HiFiMAN Edition XX. Two items available from Massdrop with a combined price of $1,000. Again, super value, IMO. At $1,100 I like the Cavalli Liquid Carbon X amp doing duty with the Focal Elex. Three pretty talented combinations in my view. If I couldn't afford all three but could afford just one right now I would select the HiFiMAN combo given my particular preferences. I believe you are likely to be VERY happy with the La Figaro/HD6XX pairing. I know I am. I am also VERY pleased with the Massdrop O2+SDAC AMP/DAC with both the Sennheisers and the HiFiMAN headphones. The O2+SDAC pushing the HD6XX headphones is crazy good value. I'd say go with the La Figaro if you want to make the most of your Sennheisers.
MichaelAnda
111
Oct 28, 2019
I recently purchased some Level 3 power cords from AntiCable for use on the La Figaro that has changed my opinion here. The La Figaro with good quality power cables like those from AntiCable surpasses what I get from the Bryston amp. Grace Balanced SDAC into La Figaro into Cardas Clear Light into Focal Elex is truly glorious. Perhaps a hint of fatigue still present. I'm thinking substituting Massdrop's Airist DAC will fix that. The bad news is the extra money involved deviating from stock. A pair of AntiCables Level 3 power cords cost $660 by themselves. Money well spent, IMO.
Sestoman
51
Sep 18, 2018
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The amp looks and sounds fantastic! I'm using this with the popular Massdrop x Sennheiser HD6XX and I'm blown away with the sound! You'll want to listen to everything you own all over again!
However, buyers beware of faulty shipping and handling methods. My parcel was poorly packed and resulted in a shattered tube upon opening. The package also had no "FRAGILE" sticker attached, so I'm sure it was thrown around a bit on the way up to Ontario, Canada. I'm not sure if this is Massdrop's fault, but it is something to definitely be aware of if you are considering purchasing. Thankfully, my support ticket was handled extremely well by Massdrop and the tube got replaced.
Sestoman
51
Sep 23, 2019
From what I remember, around $70.
Bpessoa
1
Sep 24, 2019
SestomanThanks Sestoman :)
cocoon
5
Jul 9, 2018
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It was badly packed! The amp can almost jump around inside the box while shipping which resulted in one tube post broken. So disappointing. This imperfect part shows in imbalance of sound between right and left sides. Cheap packing. They use old newspaper as a wrap paper! So poor!
Not recommend to anyone, unless improvement has been done.
PS: sound-wise, it is fine.
Offramp
76
Dec 3, 2018
Yes I can 5693 RCA reds. They sound even better now. I just bought some Stax cans but holding off on buying amp to steady myself. Gonna get a Hawaii or a Woo to power the Stax. With that said the 339 will always be my flagship dynamic and planar amp.
Horseknight
179
Dec 3, 2018
OfframpAgree. RCA 5693 works great with 339.
silau
11
Sep 19, 2019
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Good but smelly
This thing sounds pretty damn good. I've had my silver unit for several months now. The amp still starts smelling once it has been on for a while though, despite having swapped the tubes.
Recommends this product? Yes
adeadcrab
258
Sep 19, 2019
silauThat's the tube magic
Jakob
378
Apr 26, 2021
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Immersive experience.
This is exactly what I hoped with its warm and powerful sound as an alternative to my THX 789. This is very detailed but less sharp, more natural in a way. Very enjoyable. Vast sound stage that pulls you in with powerful bass. A good way to describe this is this is like watching a movie in a theater VS the thx is like watching at home on a excellent hi definition oled. If I were to critically listen I would choose the thx but for enjoyment this is tough to beat. Listening to 2049 soundtrack using Bryston bda2 and Emu Bamboo is crazy fun. The bass... Jaw dropping thunderous bass. Don't even try your Elex with this combo, it will clip non stop. Love that headphone but it has limits, 2049 via the 339 is definitely beyond that limit. Plenty of power. I did not like it paired with the Beyer dynamic 177x. I get a mild buzz usually in one side for some reason. Tubes are stock drivers and Russian power tubes. Looking for other tubes but they seem to fetch a lot of money and it's hard forking out hundreds just on tubes. The build is impressive. You get your money's worth. The chassis is stout, components appear high quality, construction equally impressive. Cannot imagine what this would fetch built in an English speaking country.
(Edited)
Recommends this product? Yes
DocBones
4
May 24, 2018
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Awesome, warm sound with very nice imaging and expansive soundstage. The negatives are the supplied tubes; these are rather noisy, even after burn-in. But, this was a minor problem that was quickly rectified by swapping out the stock tubes with quality RCA and Tung Sol tubes. I'm very pleased with the La Figaro 339 and can't wait to pair it with my Massdrop/Sennheiser HD6XX headphones when they arrive in August.
Offramp
76
Dec 3, 2018
Beyond awesome after tube change.
DocBones
4
Feb 16, 2019
Sorry for the late reply. The pairing w/ the Sennheiser 6XX is O.K. But honestly, the AKG 7XXX [paired with the La Figaro] is actually more subtle; the imaging and soundstage also seem more nuanced and detailed. Hope this is helpful—and, again, sorry for a nearly three-month(!) delay in my reply.
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