The guy I bought it from says it's ultra smooth, lush, and just seductive.
hope you got this on a written guaranty backed by an irrevocable letter of credit. if not, then like all those who buy any piece of audio equipment without an audition: you shall reap what you sow; dont expect giant beanstalks.
Yes, Cornfedboy. It is definately a risk, and I would have never done something like this even a year ago. But the the Chinese products are so reasonably priced, I would not be losing out on that much if I don't like it. It's not just the guy who told me about the ultra smooth, lush, and seductive sound. It's the two reviews, one on the 88D and the other on the higher priced monos (similar house sound), and at least 4 members I can recall on on A-gon and AA who have had the same experience with the 88D. I have had very good experience with recent Chinese products from Shengya and Cayin. Unlike 10 years ago when there was no such thing as A-gon, I may have lost out on alot, but on most equipment these days you can get 70-75% or more back on mint condition electronics. Unfortunately, it's not possible to get a in-home trial or a dealer audition on many good Chinese products.
Dracule1, please revisit with impressions/review when you have had some time with the amp. This was on my list to audition but the heat of the Class A operation scared me off for now.
There is precious little in terms of reviews on this amp, pro or amateur.
I'll have it early next week. Will keep you posted? From what I hear, the integrated does not run as hot as most class A because of the elaborate heat sinks inside the chassis.
This really is a great sounding amp, and a tremendous value. Bound For Sound reviewed the amp several months ago and recommended it highly. I passed because of warranty issues, but the sound is spectacular. I believe it's a real stretch to say it is as good as the DK, but it's very nice.
I'd be glad to hear what you have to say too. They are sold about an hours drive south of where I live.
Have you heard the 88D and DK personally in your own system? Otherwise, I don't think you could say which is better. The guy I'm buying from has heard both in the same system and recommends the Jungson. I have no reason to believe he's being dishonest. I have heard the DK with NOS Mullard tubes driving the VS VR4jr at the 2005 NY HE Show and was extremely impressed with the sound. Many seem to think the stock tubes are unimpressive. I for one do not want to spend another $200 for NOS tubes on top of $3000 for the DK when there is a comparable integrated for nearly half the price. May be I'll get burned but that's a risk I'm willing to take.
dracul1, If you order the Jungson you won't get burned, it's outstanding! Yes, I have listened to both the Jungson and DK extensively, for many hours in the same system. I have a friend who has both and he and I both easily prefer the DK. Dealers sell the products they have in order to make a living so they have a vested interest. Personally, I don't care what you buy as I'm not making money off of anything you purchase. Again, I think they are both very good amps, but in my opinion the DK is better. My intent is not to rain on your parade---If you're happy I'm happy for you, and my guess is that you will love the Jungson. The 88D is a great choice and a killer value, but imho the DK is in another league.
84audio, sorry I was not trying to come down on you. If you have heard both in the same system, I believe in your opinion. The dealer I bought it from sells both the DK and Jungson. He would have made more money if he sold me the DK, but he really preferred the Jungson. He said he has had customers sell their DK for Jungson and vice versa. So in the end, it's really a matter of preference.
Like I said, I have heard the DK with the NOS Mullard and really enjoyed the sound. Dynamics, staging, and imaging were incredible. But I did hear what I can only describe as "tube resonance" or kind of a scratchy sound in the upper midrange or grainy quality that begin to tire me after awhile. I've heard this from some other lower end tube equipment also. For some reason, I'm very sensitive to this. The higher end tube equipment like the AR, Atmosphere, McIntosh, and the like do not have this quality - they're velvity smooth. It's hard to describe, but I can't live with it in the long run.
The best sounding amps I ever heard were both SS, a modified Threshold SA-3 class A amp and the big YBA mono blocks. Both were grain free and just transparent as hell. May be your right, I may end up preferring the Jungson if it is smooth and luscious as some describe it to be.
Thanks for your input 84audio.
Where did you see a review of the monoblocks? As to the temperature it runs cool for class A. I use it in a 12x13 room and no problem even in the summer.
Maxxc, here's the review of the JA-100 monoblocks:
Good to hear from you.
Thanks, Still using the Cayin Tube amp? I think you'll really like the difference. I had a Jolida 202A which probably isn't quite up to the level of the Cayin. None the less I think you'll probably find the midrange more resolving but probably not quite as warm. Treble more extended and natural. Big difference will be in the bass and slam department. Speakers will probably sound an octave deeper.
These are just guesses, not having heard the Cayin. But I think you'll find music alot more exciting. Should match real well with the Shengya tube CDP.
Looking forward to your impressions once you have it burned in.
All Chinese rig cool!
Hi Maxx, I sold my Cayin and Shengya CDP. Although I enjoyed the openness of the Cayin, I wanted more extension and dynamics. The other problem was tube noise especially with a tube Shengya CDP I had. The soundstage collapsed and sound became harsh on loud classical passages. You can only ask so much from a 30 watt integrated. I also ordered the Marantz SA-11 SACD player, both the amp and player should arrive around the same time. I think I'll get all the things you mentioned and more, if there is synergy between the Jungson and Marantz. I will write a review of both units once everything has broken in. I could never afford this level of sound if it weren't for the new wave of excellent Chinese gear.
Same here no way I could afford this type of performance with domestic/euro gear. Thats what I had heard about the Cayin. Thats why I think you'll find this alot more exciting amp. Its anything but boring, big big 80wpc.
The owners manuel is intersting. English on the front and back. First page is in English with the same thing in Chinese under it saying be sure to read the manuel. Everything after that is in Chinese. LOL Not that you really need instructions.
One thing I did learn though is if you hold down the mode button on the remote, which is used to select the input source, it allows you to go up and down much faster on the volume control which being a stepped attenuator is fairly slow.
Love to see the Luxury Edition. Andy at Sekei after seeing the LE said he was going to be ordering it as standard rather then the non LE because its such a cool looking amp.
Probably not totally relevant to this thread, but I just bought the Jungson 88C (budget 80W, class AB integrated) used (on Audiogon of course). It was interesting for me to read the link to the review that Maxx posted on the more expensive gear, as the 88C exhibits the same kind of behaviour with the volume control as its more expensive brethren in the lineup. I have never had the volume control past about 18-20 for serious listening, but there is a point at which going one notch further seems to harden the sound up noticeably. I think this is a characteristic with most gear, but it was noticeable immediately with the Jungson; it would be nice if there was a little less gain delivered between "notches" on the volume control as you get higher up on the volume scale.
That, however, is a pretty minor quibble and I can tell you that I am thrilled with this amp. It replaced an older Audiolab 8000A which I bought used for about $400 Cnd. in 1990 or so. The Audiolab had been modified a bit (Vampire RCA's, Cardas jacks, extensive damping of the chassis) and sounded considerably better than it did stock and was pretty highly thought of in the budget integrated category for a long time (it retailed around $900-$1000 Cnd. in the early to mid 90's). I paid $300 U.S. (about $380 Cnd.) for the Jungson expecting it would be kind of a sideways move sonically but I'm getting old and lazy and really wanted a remote. The 88C is miles ahead of the Audiolab in terms of digging into the recording, transparency, smoothness, bass control, etc. etc. I can literally hear stuff on many recordings that was not there with the Audiolab and the overall presentation is much more refined and less aggressive. The 88C, however, will not make poor recordings sound good; certain (particularly pop-fortunately I don't listen to much of it) recordings which sounded hard and aggresive on the Audiolab sound even worse with the Jungson, but well recorded material sounds significantly better.
Unless there are reliability issues (and I would doubt it based on how the stuff appears to be built-it is gorgeous and appears to be of extremely high quality), this stuff is an absolute bargain. I have always been a "value for money" audiophile; I'm not particularly interested in paying 2 or 3 times as much for what I consider to be limited performance gains, so the Jungson stuff is pretty appealing to me. I know that Maxx had an e-mail from the previous owner of the 88c that I now have who felt the amp might be a little weak dynamically (he ended up upgrading to the class A 88D) but I honestly don't hear that. I'm a very happy guy.
Small world. Daniel emailed me and said he sold his 88C to someone who was a little apprehensive about the dynamics before buying it.
Actually the dynamics thing was a little out of context. What I basically said on AA was that I had not heard the 88C. Recommended the 88C on what other owners were saying.
He really liked the amp but thought it might not be quite as dynamcic as his old setup. This really had me curious since the 88C like the 88D is suppose to be quite dynamcic.
It really floored me to find out the 88C had replaced his Bryston 2B LP amp/Forte3 preamp combo. Nuff said?
That former owner to which Hdm refers is I. I am starting to think that the dynamic weakness I noticed was due more to the awful wiring/power of my house than the actual unit. I live in a hundred year old house that hasn't been updated electrically in a long time (I want to say that the house is not even properly grounded), and since I share a circuit with some two other people and a bathroom, I don't have the best setup in terms of power. It was supposed to be updated a few years ago, but an estimate of $70,000 to get everything up to date scared off the house manager from doing it.
Anyhow, glad to hear that the 88C is working out for you, Hdm. It is a wonderful piece especially for the price. Have you compared the balanced inputs to the single ended ones yet? I never got around to doing that (anyone done this with the 88D?). Furthermore, I must agree that it does justice to well-recorded material.
However, I have gotten around to listening a "little" to the 88D as well. By far the biggest difference between the two is the warmth of the 88D. Never before had I ever enjoyed listening to vocals (and all music for that matter) as much as I do now. More importantly in my opinion is that the presentation is not colored overly with warmth, and details remain detailed but never near a point where it can be fatiguing, just as BFS, posters here (and AA) have described.
Actually, I wasn't really overly concerned with the dynamics issue; I was just kind of pulling your leg Dan because I read on Audioasylum after I'd bought the amp from you but before I met to take delivery that Maxx had the e-mail from you that he described above. There's no keeping anything from anyone with all the information on these forums! I figured if the amp didn't work out, I'd sell it, perhaps at a small loss, but I can assure you that won't be happening. Thanks again Dan for a smooth transaction and I'm glad your happy with your new Jungson as well.
I haven't used the balanced outputs yet and will probably not use them in a totally balanced mode anyway. My intention is to run my CD player on one single ended input, my turntable on the other and my satellite receiver (single ended) into the balanced input. Still have to buy a new phono stage.
But I'm in total agreement with Maxx that it is pretty impressive that this level of performance and quality of workmanship is available at these kinds of price points. While I don't have any sonic comparisons other than my Audiolab, the build quality of this piece at $399 U.S. full retail is comparable to things like Classe, Musical Fidelity, Sim Audio, and other pieces costing 3 to 4 times as much. Not that I'm into "audio jewellery", but it really is an "audio jewellery" piece at a Best Buy price.
The instruction manual is a bit of a hoot though; either Chinese has a bit of a problem being translated into English or there are some pretty quirky expressions and ways of describing things in Chinese.
I should also state that all of my listening with this amp has not been done with the stock power cord, which I never even put on. The cord in use on the 88C is a fully cryoed (cable and connectors) DIY cord made with JPS in-wall cable and Marinco male and IEC.
Even smaller world. LOL Hey Daniel :)
If is difficult to describe the midrange using normal audiophile jargon. But I think you've perty much hit the nail on the head. Natural warmth with detail. Funny though seems like everyone who hears this amp hears it the same way; very unusual, as we all tend to hear different.
Still using the E5? In my case the balanced thing didn't work as well as RCA because of the difference in the E5 RCA and balanced output. Like I said before I believe the balanced on the E5 must have been a after though or not worked out as well as the RCA since Eastsound didn't bother to include balanced outputs on the matching S8A integrated.
Hdm not suprised. Seem to be a fair number who are reporting the 88C is equaling or bettering amps in the $1200-1500 range and above in both sound and build quality.
Hdm, this whole email/forum thing doesn't really allow sarcasm to be fully communicated as I knew that you were joking about the dynamics when we met, just couldn't convey it via email/posting.
Maxx, I am still using the E5 (and loving it) but haven't considered comparing xlr to single-ended because it just would not be fair to compare the two.
Dracule, do you know what exactly the differences between the LE and the normal version? Obviously cosmetics play a role, but I also remember reading somewhere that there is a cap upgrade...
Dan, according to the dealer I got my 88D LE from, there's supposed to be better caps and resistors in addition to the cosmetics, connectors, and better binding posts. But when I asked the guy exactly what the upgraded caps and resistors were, he didn't know. According to him, communication with the Chinese Jungson reps is difficult - kinda like trying to decipher the Jungson user's manual with their quircky English expressions I suppose. If anyone has seen the inside of a standard 88D and the LE, please let us know the difference.
Hi Drac, I checked into the Luxury edition when it became available. The reason the dealer dosen't know the internal differences is, there arn't any. External only. Black and Chrome case, upgraded remote and not sure about better binding posts.
Jungson offers Luxury editions on perty much all their equipment: Amps, pre, integrated, CDP and tuner. Option at DEALER COST can run from a little under $50 to multiple hundreds depending on the equipment being upgraded to LE.
In the case of the 88D the general DEALER COST seems to run between $150-160 for the LE upgrade.
Wanted to highlight the dealer cost thing since those who sell the LE seem to be only charging around $200 more. I'm fairly sure the dealer didn't intentionally mislead you. Theres virtually no additional profit and the Internal difference belief is common.
Yes it does have upgraded binding posts. Andy has a 88D LE for sale here on Audiogon that hightlights the differences between standard and LE.
Hey Maxx, did you have both the LE and standard 88D for direct comparison when you looked inside? I would think it would be almost imposssible to tell the difference in the caps and resistors comparing the LE with published pics of the standard 88D. It does make sense about the virtually no additional profit with the LE, but being a Chinese unit I wouldn't surprised if they were able to squeeze in some better caps and resistors. I would be surprised if the Chinese rep was misleading the dealer about the LE. May be there was a misunderstanding due to communication difficulty.
Comparing Andy's listing
to the specs of the stock unit doesn't result necessarily in a difference of the brand of caps but rather an increase in total capacitance by 80,000 microfarads.
Hi Dan, actually both the standard and LE versions have 240,000 mF of capacitance. His website lists the capacitance for the standard 88D which is for the Chinese market. All US version of the 88D have more capacitance.
...and I thought I already was getting a lot for my money : ).
Daniel no I have never seen the LE edition. Although Andy says it looks awesome and will be ordering it as his default player rather then the standard.
We checked into it and no differences. Andy is the man when it comes to Jungson perty much got the Jungson thing started here in the states.
However Jungson does do some customization. When looking into the Jungson Moon Harbor CDP, found out the Opamps are welded to the circuit board. Jungson said they could place the Opamps in the outputs and non welded which would allow easy upgrade to different Opamps such as the BB OPA627. So who knows there may be some Jungson products with mods we don't know about.
Have a great Weekend.
Drac is tomorrow the day?
Maxx, Tuesday is the day!
I've been lucky not having to wait, which has got to be tough.
Got my speakers used from a guy in Singapore. Sent the funds the day before I went on vacation and they were sitting on my kitchen table when I got home.
Jungson wasn't planning on buying. Went to Andy's to order a Mingda tube amp. Listened to the 88D for about an hour or two and took it home.
Called Andy to see if he had any CDP's available in stock. He usually has almost all his inventory sold by the time his order arrives. He only had one CDP that no one had claimed. Eastsound CD-E5. No one knew anything about Eastsound then, including me. Thought it looked cool and the price was right so I bought it. Pure dumb luck!
This one I did wait a few weeks on as his distributor wanted to hear the E5, so back to Florida for a few weeks. Still my Jungson was virtually new so I didn't mind as I wanted to get familar with the Jungson before upgrading CDP's.
Get your muscles ready, its a challenge to even get the 88D out of the box :)
As always BW
Just received my new Jungson 88D LE-it's a beast. Still in it's massive box. I'm too tired to open it at this time. Tomorrow morning I'll have a look. Can't do much anyway as I still have not received my Marantz SA11 player.
Well, I have been listening to the 88Ds for two days now. The previous posts about the 88Ds being "lush" is correct. This is the smoothest SS amp I have ever heard. I keep on thinking I'm listening to tubes. So far, it has about 20 hrs of break in time. I'm hearing some fog to the sound, eg the sound isn't as clear and open as I'm used to. I'm attributing this to lack of break in at this point.
Also, this could be due to my new, but temporary, Sony CE595 SACD player I just bought. Both have the same amount of break in time.
Maxx, did you hear this when you first got the amp? How long before this cleared up? Thanks.
Hi Drac, Yes I did. However I didn't notice it at the time because I was going from a Cambridge Audio A500RC amp and the Jolida 202A was a distant memory.
I really didn't bother to A/B with the CA as everthing was better although the clarity was about the same.
After the 100 hour mark I really noticed the difference and commented to my wife that it sounded like 2 or 3 layers of haze had been stripped away from the music. This suprised me because it didn't even realize it was there initially.
Like the BFS review says the amp requires some break in time. Probably about 200 for full breakin.
The Sony I guess is a cheap player till you get the Marantz and its new as well? Yep there definitly will be some clarity issues especially when going from the Shengya CDP to a unbroken in player. Got another very big jump in performance when my Camabrige Audio CDP was replaced by the Eastsound. Almost on the same magnitude as changing amps.
So yes expect a world of difference once your Jungson and Marantz are broken in. I also found that my speakers needed repositioning to sound their best.
Thanks Maxx. Your input is always helpful. I will be emailing you regarding a private matter.
Your welcome. Look forward to your email.
Maxx, email was sent yersterday. Did u get it?
No didn't get it. Have some trouble with Audiogon emails. Just type in Maxxc at Audio asylum you can find it there. Let me know if you can't find it.
Could you email me first? Then I can reply. Thanks.
Can't send emails via audiogon. Keep getting the set "Cookies" message.
I'll try to email u thru AA.
I have my Jungson since the beginig of april. Well, it's more than one month old, and I use it more then 300 hours. This amp need this 300 hours to break in. But I have a little problem with it still. Maybe somebody can help me.
Before Jungson I use Korsun Ks99 -, and a little bit Korsun V8i it wasn't mine. When I got Jungson and switch on in my system first I was very dissapointed. Compare with korsun - KS99, and V8i both - Jungson was slow, and not too detailed in high, and low. Was only good in the mid's, but soo slow.
I try Jungson with so many cables, and I think Jungson very sensitive aboute cables. I try it with AQ, Kimber, and Nordost quatrofil IC, and SPM reference LS. With nordost it was amazing, but still slow.
After that I try wit HT AC10 power, and PRo Silway MKII IC, and Kimber 8TC. The resoult suprise me, the detail growing, and it wasn't soo slow.
But I need little bit more qick, and dinamycs. If anybody has idea which cable can be made this please write it.
My new Jungson has developed problems. The left channel started to intermittently go out and produce crackling noise. The power meter went out, and there's hum from the amp and speakers. It was starting to sound so smooth, holographic, and clear. My dealer thinks it was dropped during shipping. I'm going to get a replacement but I will have to wait until end of June. Just goes to show ya, you really need a good dealer behind products from China. If my dealer did not stand by his product, I would be screwed.
Sorry Kocska. I'm not sure if I could help you since I have limited experience. I use Crystal Clear silver cables from PKMaudio.com. With these, it sounds very open and clear. The bass was not as dynamic as I would like but the amp only had 30 hrs of break in time. What kind of speakers and source do you have? A ultra smooth and lush amp like the Jungson may not mate well with speakers that are warm and do not have good control in the bass. I could see how the Nordost, a fast/lean sounding cable, may do well with the Jungson.
Koczka123 I think your problem is not going to be solved by cables.
If you read every single review of the Jungson 88d people say the same thing - It sounds like a tube amp, and has great mids -
If someone describes an amp as sounding like a tube amp, I immediately think of it as being slow and lacking in dynamics. It just depends on personel preference and it sounds like you prefer a solid state type amp.
Incidently all the comments I have seen about Korsun say it is fast and dynamic - the opposite of Jungson no doubt
Agisthos, well I think you right, but I hope not.
I couldn't belive many people say it's a good amp, if it sounds like I hear -withoute dynamic, and speed.
With this amp some of my CD's I can't hear. For example I have a Tori Amos unploged song (it's not an official CD as I know). In this song only Tori Amos and a Bösendorfer, when Tori beat the bass section of the piano it's unbelivable. So many energy, dinamycs and so on.
But with Jungson it's nothing, just a boring song....
I hope you don't mean all tube amps are slow and lacking dynamics. Only SS amps that try to emulate tubes. Please tell me this is what you meant.
Well, I'm not hearing what Agisthos is hearing. I agree it is lush and smooth, but not slow by any means. It's more dynamic than any tube amp I have heard under 200 watts (VTLs, AR, Atmosphere, etc). For example, I was floored by the dynamics in the SACD version of Pink Floyds Dark Side of the Moon. Literally shook the walls on certain passages in my set up. Every tube amp that I have heard is very midrangey compared to SS. The Jungson has a more balanced perspective with rest of the freq range. It's lush and smooth but not bloomy in the midrange like a SET. I liken it to a top non-oversampling DACs (eg, Audio Note, Zanden) with their natural presentation. Many SS amps tend to artificialy heighten the sense of dynamics with artificial detail, and if this is what your looking for then look else where. Or retrain your ear to hear what live music sounds like by going to a nice hall (eg, Boston Symphony Hall) playing unamplified acoustic music. You'll find the Jungson to be a close approximation to the real thing. This I know from 30 hours of listening to the Jungsons.
Sorry, my last remark was directed more to Koczka123.