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The Audiophile Thread


DEALUX

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1 hour ago, owl-man said:

Got a question, is an ex-display ATH-A1000x for about 470 aud a deal I should go for or pass on

You'd really need to try them. I really rate the ATH Art series I've tried (the 990Z and 1000Z) but I've never tried the older X models. They have a very typical Audio-Technica profile with a bit of boost in the mids and midbass which suits the majority of music I listen to.

The headband design is very much an acquired taste though- I've modified mine for a better fit.

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12 hours ago, sivispacem said:

You'd really need to try them. I really rate the ATH Art series I've tried (the 990Z and 1000Z) but I've never tried the older X models. They have a very typical Audio-Technica profile with a bit of boost in the mids and midbass which suits the majority of music I listen to.

The headband design is very much an acquired taste though- I've modified mine for a better fit.

I wish I could try it before buying, but it's a store in WA, not Vic. Can't try the 1000z either because we don't get that model, not that I'd get it anyway since it's over 700 dollars.

 

Probably a better deal than kph30i for 70-80 dollars tho.

Edited by owl-man
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3 hours ago, owl-man said:

I wish I could try it before buying, but it's a store in WA, not Vic. Can't try the 1000z either because we don't get that model, not that I'd get it anyway since it's over 700 dollars.

 

Probably a better deal than kph30i for 70-80 dollars tho.

Oh undoubtedly, but I am also left wondering how long they've been sitting out as "display" models given that they were released in 2011 and replaced by the Z series in 2016.

 

I imagine they're very similar to the Z, certainly from the specification there's not much difference between the two. 

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On 2/18/2021 at 4:48 AM, SilverRST said:

Beyerdynamic makes amazing audio stuff like the headphones. I have 5 Beyer headphones lol

The DT990 is usually known for painfull treble. I'm sensitive to painfull "sss" so the DT990 probably would murder my ears. I do have the DT880 250ohm and it's one of my favorites. The soundstage is big and am not sure why it's labeled as semi-open. The Beyer Tygr 300R seems to be a DT990 with less aggressive treble.

I noticed that even the 990 has a bit more dampening on the back than something like the HD600 or HD800 (which are completely open). They do isolate somewhat but sound very open and spacious. They are harsh for sure but a bit of EQ helps. I just love how good the imaging and clarity is for $150 so it makes me more forgivable of their other flaws.

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36 minutes ago, DEALUX said:

I noticed that even the 990 has a bit more dampening on the back than something like the HD600 or HD800 (which are completely open). They do isolate somewhat but sound very open and spacious. They are harsh for sure but a bit of EQ helps. I just love how good the imaging and clarity is for $150 so it makes me more forgivable of their other flaws.

It does indeed. Beyers do have a lot of great headphones with many different sound signatures. Ever tried Amiron Home? That's the perfect headphone for movies because of its cinematic audio and great bass extension details and it's amaing too for gaming. Just because something is more expensive doesn't mean they are automatically superior to less expensive ones. Also not sure why the DT880 is semi-open because it sounds very open and spacious too lol

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Yeah the treble harshness on the 880 and 990 are the only real criticisms for them, especially at the price.

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On 2/19/2021 at 3:17 PM, sivispacem said:

Yeah the treble harshness on the 880 and 990 are the only real criticisms for them, especially at the price.

Turned down the frequencies that are responsible for the harshness and it's a damn good headphone.

 

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On 2/19/2021 at 4:17 PM, sivispacem said:

Yeah the treble harshness on the 880 and 990 are the only real criticisms for them, especially at the price.

Yeah, it's kind of uncanny. Even without the peaks at 6K and 8K (250 ohm model apparently has a peak at ~13K as well) the upper treble is 2-3 dB too elevated. It makes them sound very spacious but it reveals the harshness in most recordings.

 

The articulation would be improved without the peaks and artificial elevation. The clarity actually reminds me a lot of some in-ears. There's something about that direct interaction with the eardrum that makes treble sound very precise but in-ears severely lack in terms of extension up top, so they perform poorly for detail overall.

Edited by DEALUX
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There are different types of trebles. Soft treble, harsh treble, fatiguing and other trebles. My Klipsch Heritage HP-3 have a very sparkly and vivid treble and no harshness. Sibilance is the most annoying, that sh*t can be really painfull and ear and brain piercing.

Edited by SilverRST
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4 hours ago, SilverRST said:

There are different types of trebles. Soft treble, harsh treble, fatiguing and other trebles. My Klipsch Heritage HP-3 have a very sparkly and vivid treble and no harshness. Sibilance is the most annoying, that sh*t can be really painfull and ear and brain piercing.

All Beyers have one or two spikes in the treble that deviate from a generic HRTF (basically how your ear subjectively perceives a flat set of reference speakers, AKA studio neutral) hence the harshness. They also overdo the upper treble.

 

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19 hours ago, DEALUX said:

All Beyers have one or two spikes in the treble that deviate from a generic HRTF (basically how your ear subjectively perceives a flat set of reference speakers, AKA studio neutral) hence the harshness. They also overdo the upper treble.

 

Xwmzzik.png

Well, not really 😛 Amiron Wireless (Copper) and T5p.2 do not have the spikes. The "sss" is so silky smooth, like an angel is pissing in your ears lol

But those are not studio headphones of course, more for home use. But screw it, EQ the DT880/990 and they are damn awesome!

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  • 2 weeks later...
Posted (edited)
On 2/24/2021 at 7:57 PM, SilverRST said:

Well, not really 😛 Amiron Wireless (Copper) and T5p.2 do not have the spikes. The "sss" is so silky smooth, like an angel is pissing in your ears lol

But those are not studio headphones of course, more for home use. But screw it, EQ the DT880/990 and they are damn awesome!

I actually kinda fixed the treble issue with this simple DIY trick lol.

 

MOMzmnl.png

 

I cut some pieces of cloth, fairly thin ones, from some cheap face masks and covered the driver with them. The stock tonality of this headphone is pretty good actually despite the somewhat v-shaped sound so killing a bit of the treble with some extra dampening makes it sound a lot more balanced and easy to listen to. It doesn't completely kill the resonances but I can actually use them without EQ lol. It's kind of a shock how simple this was.

 

Edit: This also makes them bassier funnily enough. An interesting sound signature.

Edited by DEALUX
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Decided to take some pictures of grandmas upstairs audio setup since I'm there.Z8StSrv.jpg

Spoiler
Spoiler

 

 

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Then she has an old Sony surround sound system for the rarely used tv in the same room.

https://imgur.com/a/RmUbiDY

8Qdaiy8.jpg

Then this downstairs which is only used for radio when they aren't home now.

PEEnHAO.jpg

Is any of this stuff worth asking for in the future? She hasn't used the upstairs stuff for almost 15 years.

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  • 2 months later...

RKoBnVW.png

 

It's funny how I keep going back to mid-fi headphones and find them superior overall to some $1K cans. These sound so natural and clean but perhaps a bit bright in some places and somewhat bass light. But still...amazing sound quality.

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Just because a headphone is $1k and up, doesn't mean it sounds superior to headphones cheaper than $1k.

I bought the Fidelio X2HR a month and some weeks ago and am really loving it! Bass is tight and punchy and bright is silky smooth and non-fatiguing.

At some point I don't even care anymore about expensive headphones, not worth the amount of money except if it's a very special headphone like the Klipsch Heritage HP-3.

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Posted (edited)

Some expensive headphones are definitely overrated but price does reflect sound quality somewhat. The issue is that when you get a more expensive set, while it may sound more detailed and clear in some sense it can also lack in other things like instrument clarity or timbre. The HD800 is a prime example (now replaced by the HD800S). It's touted as the most detailed dynamic driver headphone but you can't help but feel weird about its sound after a while. It doesn't sound natural in the way it spaces everything out to the point where you lose too much instrument clarity.

 

With the R70x and some other cheap dynamic open-backs, you don't get the same super wide soundstage effect and spacious sound, but in return you get a more narrow presentation with more focused images/instruments (the latter is a more natural representation of sound). The detail on the cheaper cans is not that far off from $1K cans. The R70x is like 95% there at least. You don't get much better than that unless you're willing to spend thousands on something like the Hifiman HE1000.

Edited by DEALUX
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Like most things, it's law of diminishing returns. A £200 pair of audiophile headphones can and do sound 10x better than a £20 pair but a £2k pair won't be an order of magnitude better than a £200 pair.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, sivispacem said:

but a £2k pair won't be an order of magnitude better than a £200 pair.

Funnily enough if you buy the wrong expensive pair it might actually be worse than the cheaper one. I mean I've had planar headphones with better bass. Well, better extended and more impactful bass, but there are things that I'm hearing on the R70x (which I bought in mint condition, used, for $200) that I can't even comprehend.

 

I was listening to some live recordings and I could actually hear the background noise of the audience while a male choir was performing. These subtle background details are the sort of things you can hear on super expensive well-tuned planar and electrostatic headphones (and some expensive dynamic ones like the Focal Utopia) but I sure as hell didn't hear them on my most expensive sets that were $1000 each (give or take). I only bought the R70x because it measured well and it was ranked pretty high by a person who has rated a lot of headphones (as objectively as possible). Other than a somewhat annoying treble peak at 8K and somewhat limp sub bass it's almost perfect.

 

Edit: What expensive headphones are supposed to do well is giving you that sensation that you are inside the recording and I believe this has mostly to do with the quality of the treble and upper treble (i.e. a smooth resonance free response brings out those subtle room cues that your brain picks up on). I'm just amazed that the R70x can give you a bit of that even though it's not super expensive (though the build is a bit questionable for $350 new).

Edited by DEALUX
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This hobby is also extremely subjective. The looks, comfort, designs plays important roles too.

Some heaphones do give a huge deminishing returns because a owner who has both Heritage HP-3 and Meze Empyrean said they sounds almost equal to each other and the Empyrean is like 3 times more expensive.

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12 hours ago, SilverRST said:

Some heaphones do give a huge deminishing returns because a owner who has both Heritage HP-3 and Meze Empyrean said they sounds almost equal to each other and the Empyrean is like 3 times more expensive.

That's probably a bad example because the Empyrean is designed to be a luxury headphone primarily and maybe not so much an audiophile one (sound wise). Most people rate it below the other headphone flagships in terms of sound quality/detail/etc.

 

They're built really well though and are very comfortable apparently. I would personally probably look at the higher end Hifiman planars like the HE1000 for better sound and good build/looks still.

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