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Yes another HD590 vs HD600 question - Page 6

post #76 of 159
Quote:
This leads me to something very important that Vertigo-1 pointed out and that is "speed". The reason the 600's sound more pleasant (I actually don't really think that is true but that is the general overall impression that fans of this phone have) is because it is so slow sounding as compared to the 590. In actual fact it is compressing the audio signal.
By compressing, don't you mean loss of dynamics? How does that relate to speed?

Anyway, that's an interesting overall take on the HD600. One of the reasons that I am considering the 600 is I have found it to be more forgiving of lesser quality CDs than my AKG 501.
post #77 of 159
Pigmode,

Your'e everywhere!

Compression is some weird stuff and almost no one who is not familiar with it is going to believe it is done on purpose to recorded material.

Compression does the same thing tubes are supposed to do to an audio signal. It knocks off or softens the peeks on the note. This is a simplified version of it but this is what happens when you use just a little bit. With just a tad of the stuff it can seem to make a signal tighten up or if enough it is used it can radically change the overall sound of an instrument by reducing the signal to an unusual proportion of fundemental tones. Listen to the rythym guitar tracks on the Eagles later recordings.

I have not been involved in the mastering process much in the last few years so I can't say for sure what is happening currently but compression is often (almost always) added to the fianal mix and at the mastering stage to make the recording sound like it all happened together in the same place and at the same time (which it, of course, didn't with modern multi-tack). It does this by adding the same coloration to everything on the recording which gives everything on the recording the same overall sound. Again, this is simplified but is is basically the correct view.

I recently heard someone describe the 600's as having a "coherent soundstage" and I could not help but think that yes that is correct as long as you spell coherent C-O-M-P-R-E-S-S-I-O-N!!!

How fast a driver can react to the signal can affect the eventual outcome of a note being replicated. If it is slow it will never fully get there. It will die under its own weight or as Vertigo-1 is suggesting its still working on replicating the note when the next signal hits it.

Once again, this is a simplified explanation and I truthfully have not thought about this stuff in years but it is really simple physics. Heavy is slow light is fast. Notice that alll the new speakers are using lighter and faster materials. There is a reason for that.

Hope that helps.
post #78 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by bkelly
I should say that I'm not sure that the 600's are actually slower although they do sound that way and the bass does seems to have a resonant frequency that the drivers like but also what I think is happening to make them sound so slow is that all the fast acting transients have been compressed. You do not hear the stick hit the drum, the hammer strike on a piano string, the guitar pick against the string and the bow dragging across the the strings of a violin or cello is really muted. These instruments are far more dynamic than the 600's are able to portray. This is probably also why the 590's sound bright to 600 fans. More transient information = more detail. Simple as that.
I doubt that the HD600s are in any way slower of course then the actual speed that the music is hitting those drivers. It's just the way they reproduce bass makes it seem slower. But I do believe you filled in what I couldn't quite put into words before. Compressing of dynamics would be a good way to put it.


Quote:
Originally posted by bifcake
Someone mention that the Etymotics produce greater bass extension than the HD600's. How is that possible given that the HD600's have bigger drivers, thus move more air, whereas Etymotics are small, in-ear phones? Logic would dictate that Etymotics would not be able to produce neither the visceral impact nor the extension of the 600's simply due to its design limitations. Am I missing something here?
One word: speed. The Etymotics have a much thinner and lighter diaphragm then the HD600s. This translates into faster response times, which translates into being able to hear more because of more clean seperations between instruments. And there, you'd probably be able to hear bass instruments clearly delineated that might've just been one big clump before on something like, the HD600s. I'd still say the Etymotics lack visceral bass though. They have fast impact sometimes, but they utterly lack the drawn out visceral bass that some dynamic headphones are capable of.

And now I'm going to contradict what I posted above and previously...the Etymotics lack visceral bass. I've discovered that this lack sometimes translates into completely missing bass notes that would've been present on a larger headphone that portrayed some sort of visceral bass. So maybe "feeling" the bass and "hearing" the low notes must go hand in hand after all for one to really get the whole picture of deep bass?
post #79 of 159
bkelly
I agree that the HD600 does not sound as fast as the Etymotic or the Grado HP-1000 but I'm surprised you find it to be so different from the HD590. I really think in that case that it's more of an effect of the bass hump than of an actual difference in transducer speed. I'm especially surprised to hear your comments since you have a Melos. Your views are more similar to people who have only heard the HD600 out of poor amps and sources. Maybe they can make you their leader.

vertigo
I disagree entirely. I've clearly heard bass notes on the ER-4S that the HD600 could not produce -- not as visceral bass or audible bass, nothing. I have never heard the reverse of that. I'll bet you can't do it with test tones.

It's good to find myself in the minority again. I think I feel more at home here and I was beginning to feel lost without Macdef around to chide me.
post #80 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by bkelly
MacDEF,
You are missing the point.
I am?

Quote:
There is no real need for headphone accuracy in a recording environment. The singer/instrumentalist is listening to unmixed tracks in their headphone for reference only. So they will know when to come in and such. Often the headphone mix is adjusted to suit the singers/instrumentalists preferences. More piano less drums, etc.
There's no need for accuracy in a recording environment? Mike Walker, where are you???

Quote:
Rarely are headphones ever used for mixing and never used to check for tonal accuracy. In fact, Ronnie Montrose is the only one I ever saw who used them much in the mixing phase and then only to check things.
When you said that lots of studio people use Grados, that was the first time I'd ever heard that. Ever. Now you're saying that headphones are rarely used for mixing, etc. First time I ever heard that, either.

Not really much to stay here, other than I stand by my original statement that for every pair of Grados in use in a studio, there are probably 100 pairs of AKG and Sony.
post #81 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by bifcake
With regard to your objections of my description of the META amp production techniques, the things I stated are factual. META IS produced by a bunch of guys on this forum, rather than a well established company. Are they trustworthy? They might be. I never said they weren't.


You said they might not be, which isn't much better.




Quote:
However, due to the fact that this is not a well established company, there is a greater risk.
Now that is not factual. You simply can't say that there is "greater risk" with these guys than with an established company. In fact, it could be argued that because these guys are longstanding, respected members of this community, there is less risk.
post #82 of 159
Vert, I think you're mixing up definitions here. Bass "extension" is what you seem to be calling "deepness." Bass extension is how low in the frequency spectrum a particular headphone can produce a note with relatively flat frequency response. So a headphone with great bass extension, like the Sony V6/7506, can produce VERY low bass notes at a relatively flat level.
post #83 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by kelly
(You know me, just chiming in to disagree.)


Quote:
I don't at all agree that the HD600 has the best bass EXTENSION. Phones that better it include (but are not limited to) Sony V6/7506, Grado HP-2 (and presumably HP-1), Etymotic ER-4S, Audio Technica W2002.
I agree with you, Kelly. The HD 600 have great bass extension, but they don't have the "best" bass extension. The V6/7506 and Etys both have a bit better extension (can't say for the other two, as I haven't heard them).

Quote:
The HD600 has good bass in that it can (with the right amp) be quite articulate but is still in my opinion a little loose and definitely "bumped" in the midbass compared to other headphones.
Also agree here: with the right amp the HD 600 is amazingly articulate in the bass. However, in the midbass there is a bit more there than with, say, Etys.


Quote:
This subject seems to be very confusing for most people and I've caught myself up in a number of debates here at HeadFi on the subject. I think the confusion between bass impact and bass extension (which is typically synonymous with "bass depth") is a large part of the problem.
Also agree Bass extension generally deals with frequencies below 70Hz or so; bass "impact" generally deals with frequencies much higher.
post #84 of 159
I somehow overlooked that whole bashing the garage guys thing. I will post a more formal review soon, but I wanted to immediately take issue with anyone dissing the DIYers on this board. Morsel, Eric, Tangent and Appheared have earned trust and respect from this community a lot more than some of the commercial companies have. Builders like JMT receive pretty high praise, too. I'd suggest you do a search here and at HeadWize and tread carefully when it comes to insinuating that kind of thing.

Macdef agreeing with me point by point... it's so twilight zone.
post #85 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by bkelly
Keeping in line with the current controversy I am going to say, without exception, the 600's are far more colored than the 590's. No doubt about that in my opinion and I think I can prove it to anyone who is willing to listen.
Not to be too contrarian, but I don't think you can, even to someone "willing to listen."

The HD 600 and the HD 590 have VERY different sounds. The HD 600 have a midbass hump and (without a cable upgrade) are a bit laid back on the top end. The HD 590 are lacking in the mids and are overly bright on top. The problem is that many people consider the "addition" of a midbass hump to be "more colored" than too much treble -- I think it comes down to the fact that many people seem to equate "audio color" to the midrange/midbass area. But that doesn't get around the fact that the HD 590 are also flawed in their own way.

Quote:
The reason the 600's sound more pleasant (I actually don't really think that is true but that is the general overall impression that fans of this phone have) is because it is so slow sounding as compared to the 590.
Only in its stock configuration without an amp, IMO.

Quote:
In actual fact it is compressing the audio signal.
A headphone cannot "compress" anything.

Quote:
You could take the 590 and run it through a studio grade compressor and simulate this effect. Is this more pleasant? Is it less fatiguing. Is it coloring the sound. The answer is a resounding yes to all of the above.
And the HD 590 is also "coloring" the sound by lacking a bit in the mids and being a bit bright in the highs... is this "decompressing" the sound?

Quote:
You do not hear the stick hit the drum, the hammer strike on a piano string, the guitar pick against the tring and the bow dragging across the the strings of a violin or cello is really muted. These instruments are far more dynamic than the 600's are able to portray. This is probably also why the 590's sound bright to 600 fans. More transient information = more detail. Simple as that.
I don't know what equipment you're using with the HD 600, but they sure don't sound like that. I hear every drum hit, every piano hit, every guitar pick, every bow scrape, every quick draw of breath, every inadvertent cymbal nick, etc. The HD 600 can portray each of these things in all their glory. If you don't think they HD 600 can do that, there are problems with either your HD 600 or your system.


Quote:
at the end of the day the 590's, win in the accuracy of portrayal debate, in a big way. The 600's are yesterdays news.
You may prefer the HD 590, but you try to present both these statements as "fact." There's a good reason that so many people love the HD 600 over the HD 590, and it's not as easy as they being flawed listeners.
post #86 of 159
I think you guys are mistaking good decay extension with "slowness" (that is so bizzare). Perhaps it's your hearing that's not able to register both decay and detail at the same time...

I found the HD590 to sound thin and lifeless (the midrange really sucks, no offense), maybe you just prefer a more analytical dry sound? Where as I tend to like it on the warm side. And we all know Vert likes it bright.

Something about perceived transients/detail: I think that many people mistake that with articulation, they simply don't pick up on much of the info that's there because it's not jumping out at them.
post #87 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by MacDEF


You said they might not be, which isn't much better.

Now that is not factual. You simply can't say that there is "greater risk" with these guys than with an established company. In fact, it could be argued that because these guys are longstanding, respected members of this community, there is less risk.
MacDEF,

If something is unclear or ambiguous, then it may or may not be so. Therefore, if someone does not have a long term record, they may or may not be trustworthy. I don't know how much more clear or neutral I can be.

With regard to risk, let's face it, the guys producing META42 amp are kids. Their livelihood does not depend on whether or not META42 succeeds. As far as I can tell, they're doing it for fun and because they like it, and they want to make some extra money on the side. Therefore, the risk lies in them being unable to deliver, deliver on time, payment receipt problems, or getting bored with this project and moving on. If that were to happen, there would be no longer support for META42 amps. Having said that, if one is willing to take these risks, there is nothing wrong with that decision. META42 can be the best bang for the buck out there and the possibility of losing support for the product may not be an issue for the buyer. That's fine. However, I think that risk, and it is a risk, should be considered during the amp selection process.
post #88 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by bifcake
With regard to risk, let's face it, the guys producing META42 amp are kids.
I'm getting the hell outta this thread...
post #89 of 159
MacDEF,

Agreeably the "590's are flawed in their own way". My point is that their flaws are noticeably less than the 600's.

By the way, I have no real investment in the 590's one way or the other. I am looking for a better set of headphones at this very moment. If it wasn't for "kelly" becoming dissastified with his W2002's and selling them I would have already purchased a pair of those. I might still.

What got me interested in this was when I heard them at the Headroon Tour after I heard all the disparaging remarks abut them from 600 fans mostly and after I read the comments Tyll had placed on a card at the dispaly referring to them as "mistakes". Just for laughs I picked them up and put them on and in seconds I knew someone was full of **** to put it mildly. A local engineer followed me and had the same reaction. By the way, this was just after I listend to the 600 (in an amp) and thought that they were "old timey" sounding.

I don't know where you get the idea that a headphone cannot compress anything. Anything that cannot complete a signal is actually compressing it. Making it smaller. Try using the word "surpressing" or "supressing the dynamics" if you like but it is the same thing.

As I have stated over and over the 590 do not need expensive amplification for a reason. They do not need additional flavoring to sound good. I have a good amplifier (Melos) and the 590's still win.


I disagree about the mids being better on the 600's. They are bigger and more lifelike on the 590's.

As far as whether or not the 590's are "decompressing" (I assume by this you mean providing more detail and dynamics than are actually on the recording) I refer you to my earlier comment that the recordings have overemphasized detail and bottom end any way so it's hard to argue. It is possible that the 590's are just giving you the facts but you don't like it, anyway.

I never personally said that, as my personal opinion, I think that Grados are more popular than other phones in the studio invironment. These are your reactions to my comments comments but not my actual comments. And you totally missed that it was an audio dealer who claimed that "with engineers and producers" they were more poular than the Sennheisers". You really need to go back and read some of this stuff again because, once again, you are taking your reactions to my comments and recasting them as my opinions.

A great example is how you have taken my comment the "There is no real need for headphone accuracy in a recording environment" and even though you reprinted that you rephrased it to say that I said that "There's no need for accuracy in the recording environment".

I thought about that comment made to me about the Grados being more popular with the engineeers and producers than the Sennheisers. If that is true it would be limited to just those two areas because I think the the Grados leak to much sound to be used as monitoring headphones.

For the same reason (the open back) you would never see the 600's in a recording studio for monitoring. They will bleed into the mikes.

So, MacDEF, I want to get along and I don't mean to upset you but my opinions have have been presented here with very strong arguments based on what I know to be facts. If you have facts that you would like to present, please do. I'd love to consider them. This is not something that I stay wound up with all of the time and, so, it's kind of fun to seriouslyl review my own prioriities and views on music reproduction.

In your next response please state your experience with these two phones. Have you owned both of them and listened to them side by side for a week or more. I have. Taphil has also and although he prefers the 600 he likes both of them and his overall opinion of the 590's is positive. Read his comments.

kelly,

You know what, you are absolutely right! Some of my feeling for the 590's seem to reflect how others feel about the 600's. Especiall the bottom end and the mid-range is quite a bit better on my 590's. I don't know why that is but it is.

It's hard to believe that the Melos is busted. I just bought it from "lextek' and he liked it. The 600's I purchased from Kurt Woodland and he has a reputation for taking care of things so I cannot figure it. But, at the same time, I cannot understand Tyll's publicly proclaimed statement that the 590's are a "mistake", either. In fact, when I see something like that I cannot help but feel that something smells. somewhere.

Your turn.




Best
Brian
post #90 of 159
bifcake
Some of these "kids" have engineering degrees. Tell me this -- do you know a single employee at Creek? (Now some other people here do, so this question is aimed squarely at bifcake.) I personally don't know anyone at Creek so I see that as being equally a risk. In fact, while Creek may be a fine and upstanding company, I have indeed bought many commercial products that sucked, had poor product support, etc. So, how am I to know that any amp manufacturer isn't like this? The risk is equal.

I communicate with several of the META guys regularly. If any of them screwed a single person over, their accountability would be far more personal and severe than any employee of any commercial company. It doesn't happen because they're good guys.

This shouldn't have had to be stated at all. This is brought on from simple closed mindedness and unwillingness to believe that a "meer DIYer" could make something better than a product you happen to have purchased. Get over it and stop insinuating things about people you OBVIOUSLY know nothing about. It is your credibility that will be destroyed in this thread if you continue it, not theirs.
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