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K1000 vs R10 ... - Page 7

post #91 of 198
I've got the R10 and K-1000/hardwired Equinox, and in all honesty, can't even begin to compare them. For certain aspects of music, each one does some things that the other cannot. Which is better? Meaningless question.
Want wide open space? K-1000. Want absolute detail? Forget both and get Qualia (so far, this has more detail than any other headphone I've heard, including HE90...but I don't have an ES1 yet ). Want a unique musical experience where the headphone becomes part of the experience? R10. Put the right system behind any of these headphones, and let them shine. You'll be much too involved in the music to worry about whether one is better than another.
post #92 of 198

All comes down to preference

I think it's all about what you value. The R10 clearly is the best resolving headphone I've heard. It also clearly beets the K1K in the smooth somewhat romantic sound. BUT I value money and at 4x + the cost we shouldn't even be comparing these headphones, but we are and frankely the R10 does not dominate like it should at it's price.

I'm using the K1K with ASL AQ1001DT in triode (w/RCA "black plate" NOS )

stock cable - I don't think the argument is that it is a smoother more romantic headphone than the Sony, but it clearly brings the soundstage outside of the head and makes it much bigger. That alone puts it above the Sony for my preferences - Add to that the tightest bass (and extended - I don't understand why people are talking about it rolling off. It extends all the way down on my setup) - but the bass isn't reinforced by any walls like speakers or all other headphone being reinforced by the transducer - which colors the sound whether you think it does or not, so you don't get the flood of bass reflections like in a room or other headphones.

Not only that but when you angle the ear monitor (or whatever you call them) right, you will get a flat frequency response). Detail - they are very close - who cares if one exceeds the other if it is so close that you have to listen for hours to even notice. The sounstage and imaging decide it for me. (I beleive the imaging is better on the K1K but that's me, I could be wrong

If I had the R10, I would enjoy it as well. It's just not worth it when you consider the money for me. - For smoothness I'll use my Grado RS-1/RA-1 w/flats. My whole K1K system with amp and CD player are less than the R10 by itself. Price does matter.
post #93 of 198
Wise advice, although I look forward to your comparison of the performance of the balanced R10/SDS-XLR system, versus the HE90/ES1 system. Although, in one of your previous posts, you said that the HE90/ES-1 system is the best that you have ever heard, I wonder whether you'll like a balanced R10/SDS-XLR system better. I also think that I've heard Wayne say that a balanced HD650/SDS-XLR system that he heard, even exceeded the performance quality of his HE90/HEV90 system. I, for one, am really looking forward to your review comments regarding your two top systems.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hirsch
I've got the R10 and K-1000/hardwired Equinox, and in all honesty, can't even begin to compare them. For certain aspects of music, each one does some things that the other cannot. Which is better? Meaningless question.
Want wide open space? K-1000. Want absolute detail? Forget both and get Qualia (so far, this has more detail than any other headphone I've heard, including HE90...but I don't have an ES1 yet ). Want a unique musical experience where the headphone becomes part of the experience? R10. Put the right system behind any of these headphones, and let them shine. You'll be much too involved in the music to worry about whether one is better than another.
post #94 of 198
Thread Starter 
Thanks for these last posts... very interesting!
My dream to keep one only king do not have any sense more...

Best!
Nicola
post #95 of 198
I don't have as much experience with top-tier heapdhones as you guys, and I have not heard HE90 (no So-Cal owners?). As a happy owner of K1000, I would say the only headphones I have heard at meets that allure me are Omga II and R-10. I suspect that if I actually own these two I will be sharing time between them and K1000. I don't see other cans like HD650, K701, W1000, SA5000, UE-10, DT880, PS-1 and Qualia seducing me away from what I use my K1000 for.
post #96 of 198
Mid-range cans like the HD650 (esp. with its stock cable) sound like they're reproducing music behind thick gauze compared to the transparency of the K1000 (IMO).
post #97 of 198
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeg
I also think that I've heard Wayne say that a balanced HD650/SDS-XLR system that he heard, even exceeded the performance quality of his HE90/HEV90 system.
Nah, I don't think I've said that. Or if I did, I shouldn't have because I've never had the chance to compare them directly.

The only expose I've has to the HD650/SDS-XLR was under meet conditions, but it definitely left an amazing impression. In balanced mode, it transformed the HD650/Zu into an entirely different creature than the same pair of cans run in single ended from the same amp. So the HD650/SDS-XLR (balanced) is definitely, and by far, the best I've ever heard the HD650's sound. This may well be the very best I've heard from ANY dynamic headphone setup (except perhaps the Qualia 010/Singlepower balanced "bling bling" gold amp at a later meet in New York). But that's hard to say.

What I have said of late is that in some ways the K1000/EAR V20 is at least commanding more of my attention and listening time than the HE90/HEV90, but I haven't really compared those two systems in a head to head manner either.

I agree entirely with Hirsch in that at some level, all of these top headphones we're talking about here are capable of performing at incredible levels and it really makes no sense at all to argue about which is "superior" to the other. To do so would first require a lot of "context" (both in a system sense, and also in terms of the music selected, your particular sonic preferences, etc.) and second would never completely hit the nail on the head because, as Hirsch has stated, each of these top headphones is capable of doing certain things that none of the others can do! His examples of the K1000, Qualia 010, R10, and HE90 are all spot on. I could add another example based on the PS-1, for instance.

This reminds me of a story... A couple of years ago, I was attending an office Christmas party for a very small company. There were about 12 of us at the table and we were having dinner at a fancy, high-end restaurant. Not really my thing, typically, but it's nice to do every now and then (and espeically on someone else's nickel). We had our appetizers and were just settling into the entrees, when a waiter came by and asked us (with a very presumptuous tone in his voice, as though he had been trained to speak this way), "How are the flavors developing?" My first reaction was to snicker, but I noticed that others at the table felt that it was a genuine question, and they murmored and nodded in approval and nothing was said about it. Afterwards, a couple of days later, I made an omlettee for my then girlfriend and asked her the same question in the same tone, and she burst out laughing! Her reaction had been the same as mine, but she too, was afraid to say it at the time! Then she said, "Do you mean how does it taste? It tastes good!" We laughed until we cried.

But I think that with certain headphones, and especially when placed in the right system, as Nik apparently has done with the K1000's and his Leben amp (and I know I have with the K1000/Ear V20), it begins to "taste" so good that you just want to savor every note. Not necessarily because it's so terribly expensive (as was our dinner that night) but because there is really something special going on and your senses are on overload. You become drenched in music and get goosebumps at times because it creates moments in your musical memory that just seemed so "perfect" that they're hard to describe, even just a few minutes later. Yet, of course, as with any restaurant, even the finest of them all, there is always something that could have been done better to improve the overall experience. And this is why, as much as we may truly love one, we still get a lot of enjoyment out of trying another, at least every now and then.
post #98 of 198
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wmcmanus
I agree entirely with Hirsch in that at some level, all of these top headphones we're talking about here are capable of performing at incredible levels and it really makes no sense at all to argue about which is "superior" to the other. To do so would first require a lot of "context" (both in a system sense, and also in terms of the music selected, your particular sonic preferences, etc.) and second would never completely hit the nail on the head because, as Hirsch has stated, each of these top headphones is capable of doing certain things that none of the others can do! His examples of the K1000, Qualia 010, R10, and HE90 are all spot on. I could add another example based on the PS-1, for instance.
Thanks for those excellent thoughts Wayne (and to Hirsch). I strongly agree that analysis can only be taken in context of the system at hand and that most, if not all of the popular headphones can be combined in a system that plays to its strengths to create a special and unique listening experience.

None of these headphones is perfect. It's all about playing to the strengths that make the music most appealing to our senses. That is what makes the equipment search most rewarding.
post #99 of 198
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nik
Thanks for these last posts... very interesting!
My dream to keep one only king do not have any sense more...

Best!
Nicola
Yep I gave up trying to find the one "perfect" headphone for me a long time ago. I find it works quite well to have 3 or 4 pairs and either use them for different music types or go through phases were you prefer one or the other. Also its good to keep in mind that at these price levels it is almost soley about preference and not what is best or better.
post #100 of 198
Thread Starter 
Very well said, agree!

BUT... do you think that, if not is possible to declare which is the "best" or the superior performances of these cans (R10, K1000, HE90, Qualia...), are you able to say which sound you find more COMPLETE ?

Doing a several tuberolling, I can notice that with certain tubes, the K1000 shines and shows a glorious sound, not same tubes produce the same highest sound with the R10, they need others tubes to show the same (but still different) highest qualiti sound.

Best!
Nicola
post #101 of 198
Wayne - I'm sorry that I misquoted you, but it did elicit your preceding excellent discussion, which I really appreciate. As for the choice of optimal system, the following appear to be some candidates: K1000/EAR 20; HE90/HEV90; R10/SDS; and HD650/SDS-XLR (balanced). My very limited comparisons of my R10/SDS versus HE90/McAlister systems indicate that the HE90 system is substantially more open, detailed, and specious than the R10 system, and that it's presentation is often startlingly holographic. So, what comes next. Do I return the SDS amp. to Mikhail in trade-in toward his electrostat headphone ES-1 amp? Or toward his SDS-XLR (balanced) amp. (and also possibly have him modify the R10 to a balanced headphone)? Do I sell the ASL AQ-1005DT amp, which now drives the K1000, and buy an amp. such as the EAR V20? I suppose that some of these decisions will wait until we have some head-to-head comparisons of the ES-1 to the HEV90, and until Wayne does some direct comparisons of his forthcoming balanced SDS-XLR system to his HE90/HEV90 system. I hope that these answers will also follow from listening sessions at the forthcoming National Head-Fi Meet in April.
post #102 of 198
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeg
Wayne - I'm sorry that I misquoted you, but it did elicit your preceding excellent discussion, which I really appreciate. As for the choice of optimal system, the following appear to be some candidates: K1000/EAR 20; HE90/HEV90; R10/SDS; and HD650/SDS-XLR (balanced). My very limited comparisons of my R10/SDS versus HE90/McAlister systems indicate that the HE90 system is substantially more open, detailed, and specious than the R10 system, and that it's presentation is often startlingly holographic. So, what comes next. Do I return the SDS amp. to Mikhail in trade-in toward his electrostat headphone ES-1 amp? Or toward his SDS-XLR (balanced) amp. (and also possibly have him modify the R10 to a balanced headphone)? Do I sell the ASL AQ-1005DT amp, which now drives the K1000, and buy an amp. such as the EAR V20? I suppose that some of these decisions will wait until we have some head-to-head comparisons of the ES-1 to the HEV90, and until Wayne does some direct comparisons of his forthcoming balanced SDS-XLR system to his HE90/HEV90 system. I hope that these answers will also follow from listening sessions at the forthcoming National Head-Fi Meet in April.
Sorry for the OT but I would like to offer my opinion on this side story here. I was able to get a balanced Qualia cable at the Saratoga meet, at which I also had extensive audition of the HE90/HEV90/Blue Hawaii. So far, to my ears, the HD650 is heads and shouders above the balanced Qualia in terms of overall musical enjoyment. With the SDS-XLR, the HD650 gains speed, dynamics, impact, and even bigger soundstage: big sound. The balanced Qualia sounds mediocre by comparison. I am actually a little disappointed as I have paid much more for the Qualia, but I guess I am getting old and have been an HD650 fan boy much too long.

HE90/HEV90 v. the HD650/SDS-XLR? I hope other head-fiers get a chance to compare the two side by side at the National Meet. All I can say is that I was ready to shell out for an HE90 system. After coming back from the meet and listening to the SDS-XLR, I asked myself why?

---Pat
post #103 of 198
Pat - I wonder whether a balanced R10 would sound still better than the balanced 650, with the SDS-XLR. I know that Mikhail has modified his R10, and hopefully he'll bring this combo to the the National Meet.
post #104 of 198
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeg
Pat - I wonder whether a balanced R10 would sound still better than the balanced 650, with the SDS-XLR. I know that Mikhail has modified his R10, and hopefully he'll bring this combo to the the National Meet.
I am actually hoping that is the case. AYT999, if you are reading this, please balance your R10 so I can come over and audition it with your SDS-XLR
post #105 of 198
When Mikhail coverts an R10 to balance mode, I think that he provides an adapter for using the R10 with regular amps.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PATB
I am actually hoping that is the case. AYT999, if you are reading this, please balance your R10 so I can come over and audition it with your SDS-XLR
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