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An Audiophile’s Journal: Introduction

post #1 of 105
Thread Starter 
How close does an Aria / ER-4S combo come to a moderately priced, but well designed (audiophile) component stereo system? And while admittedly not a fair comparison: How much difference can be heard between a mid-fi CDP and the Wadia 830 costing nearly 15 times as much? Or between an iPod G5 and a mid-fi CDP?

As this series begins – having NEVER heard a modern head-fi rig – I don’t know the answers. But, before heading off to work today the postman delivered my new Cordia Aria, so I’m about to find out! And I plan to share my impressions here at Head-Fi. So please join me as I experience my first head-fi rig.

Additional Links

- Bought new Ety ER-4Ps for $175.95

[Edit: Removed a forward looking statement.]
post #2 of 105
Quote:
How close does an Aria / ER-4S combo come to a moderately priced, but well designed (audiophile) component stereo system?
It will easily have the detail, and transparency of a high-end speaker rig, but will fall short in imaging, depth, and dynamics.

Quote:
How much difference can be heard between an iPod G5 (or a mid-fi CDP) and a Wadia 830 costing nearly ten times as much?
The Ipod is basically low-fi the Wadia is a state of the art digital source. There is no comparison.
post #3 of 105
Quote:
How close does an Aria / ER-4S combo come to a moderately priced, but well designed (audiophile) component stereo system? And while admittedly not a fair comparison: How much difference can be heard between an iPod G5 (or a mid-fi CDP) and a Wadia 830 costing nearly ten times as much?
I think you are setting yourself up for disappointment. There's no way that headphone/iPod system can compare to your home stereo.
post #4 of 105
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by markl
I think you are setting yourself up for disappointment. There's no way that headphone/iPod system can compare to your home stereo.
I know the head-fi rig will not reach the same level of SQ. But I'm willing to bet that dollar-for-dollar it will be some of the best money I've ever spent on audio. I can already say that I think the stock iPod was a great investment just because it allows me to get closer to music in a variety of settings. So I don't think I will be dissapointed.
post #5 of 105
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alwayswantmore
I know the head-fi rig will not reach the same level of SQ. But I'm willing to bet that dollar-for-dollar it will be some of the best money I've ever spent on audio. I can already say that I think the stock iPod was a great investment just because it allows me to get closer to music in a variety of settings. So I don't think I will be dissapointed.
Although sonically, there will be differences, there is something special about a nice headphone rig. It lets you be one with your music. It is a much more intimate and satisying experience.
post #6 of 105
To be totally fair you will need to plug the Aria / ER-4S combo into the Wadia to make comparisons between the two.
post #7 of 105
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CRESCENDOPOWER
To be totally fair you will need to plug the Aria / ER-4S combo into the Wadia to make comparisons between the two.
I'm using a mid-fi Denon CD changer for burn-in. Ultimate home for the Aria will be my media room, connected to the Wadia.

I am interested to see how much difference the various combinations of equipment makes. This forum was extremely valuable as I made my purchase decision. This journal is my attempt to give something back to this great on-line community.
post #8 of 105
Hi,

In fact what you're about to find is the limits of the Etys.

I have tried them with many high end CDP and they cant change their nature. But if you like details they will respond in a big way.
A good investment?....You bet!!

Keep on writing we'll keep reading....

Amicalement
post #9 of 105
Thanks for sharing your experience. I am awaiting your thoughts on the ARIA
post #10 of 105
I was shocked when I tried my headphone setup with my home CD player. There's an improvement in pretty much any parameter you want to name.

The biggest thing was that the bass was just so much more pronounced. I actually had the bass boost engaged on the Supermini when used with my iPod. It was a bit excessive but fun on the go. When I hooked it up to my home CD player the bass was so strong that it was almost unlistenable. I took out the bass boost and the result was almost as much bass as I was getting with the bass boost with the iPod but far more natural and detailed. I didn't think the iPod has any bass roll-off through the line-out, but I really can't explain this.
post #11 of 105
Thread Starter 
OK, gang, I'm about to connect the Aria to my Wadia 830 CDP!!!

It's about 11:30 PM New Year’s Day, and I just got home from another day of working a holiday weekend (I worked Christmas weekend too). Unfortunately my work schedule has left little time to listen or write.

I had planned to run the Aria through a number of scenarios (iPod / Denon CD / Etc.) prior to connecting to my Wadia, but I can no longer stand to wait , so I'm minutes away from connecting the Aria to my Wadia 830 and getting my first real exposure to Head-Fi!

I've been using my home office CD changer for burn-in. I’ve had 5 reference CDs playing in rotation for about 34 hours now. And so far I've literally spent less than five minutes listening to the Aria, so this will be a big night!

I am back to work again tomorrow, but I will try to post my impressions as time allows.

Thanks again for your interest and support.
post #12 of 105
Quote:
Originally Posted by sxr71
I didn't think the iPod has any bass roll-off through the line-out, but I really can't explain this.
The ipod doesn't have any bass roll-off through the line out. The bass roll-off is a function of the ipod's internal headphone amp, not the line out.
post #13 of 105
Thread Starter 
Now 55 minutes later I've got it connected >>> Wadia 830 / Audioquest Quartz / Aria / Ety ET-4P with P->S connector. First impression is that I will like my new rig, especially for vocals and acoustic. But while the bass is tight, it doesn’t go very deep (Etys ???). Sounds like quality monitor speakers with no sub-woofer. More impressions to come...
post #14 of 105
I'm looking forward to a long thread. And your next few pairs of headphones...
post #15 of 105
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teerawit
The ipod doesn't have any bass roll-off through the line out. The bass roll-off is a function of the ipod's internal headphone amp, not the line out.

I know, but I can't explain why the bass is so much more prounounced coming from my home CD player.
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