Originally Posted by amartignano
Very interesting insights of higher-end setups!
As a "proud" HE60 owner I have a question:
ok, it's somewhat natural that the HE90 sounds better than HE60, given the HE60 is a "cheap" derivate of the HE90...
But can you guys say something about HE60 vs OmegaII?
And, moreover, specifically, in what parameters the HE90 was better than the OmegaII and HE60 respectively?
thanks in advance
Originally Posted by Nik
Andrea, I think that they have listened the HE60 with the Orpheus amp, this is not a little thing !!! (Keep in mind my friend !!!).
Hey guys, I'm glad our meet has some interest for you. Ok, so HE60, HE90, OmegaII. First of all, I think the HE60's sound fabulous out of the HEV90, probably the best I've heard them. They gain a warmth and naturalness that the HEV70 cannot touch. Other amps like the Blue Hawaii and the 007t seem to either lose microdynamics or detail in comparison.
The Omega2 is not at its best (i'm guessing) on an HEV90. It did have good bass, and it did sound quite nice actually, but I feel like a blue Hawaii or possibly an ES-1 would have been a better match. Actually Mikhail called me during the meet to wish us all a good meet. He was actually planning on coming but it snowed heavily on Colorado the night before. He is still working on my ES-1 and so it will have to wait for another meet (tentatively planned for the 3rd week of Feb).
Anyway, during the meet I kept thinking and commenting that, while the HE90 is clearly in a league of its own (not even close), the HE60 and Omega2 are natural contenders. With an HE90 around, I would never feel the urge to pick up an Omega2, but with just the HE60, there are trade offs.
The Omega2 can almost have too much bass. It can be almost boomy sounding to me. This can be gotten used to, but once you switch to another headphone, like the HE60 it can be quite evident. The Omega2 has a great midrange that is smooth and non-fatiguing. I can generally raise the volume quite a bit higher and not get any hard sibilant transients or the like. I like this aspect of the Omega2, and it tend to see it as a very euphonic headphone that imparts its own signature very strongly to the material. The HE60 on the other hand is more like the HE90 - it is euphonic, but not obviously so. In comparison to the Omega2, it doesn't have as much bass, but it does have more impact around 80hz-160hz than the Orpheus. However, it doesn't extend very low and tends to drop off quickly. Hence impact without much sustain. Whereas the HE90 bass is simply amazing. I felt the same thing about the K1000 - it has good bass but it doesn't extend or sustain nearly as long or as well as the Omega2 or HE90. I'll have to do some more listening to comment on the high's of the HE60 and Omega2. Nothing really stuck out other than the fact that the HE60 retained none of its metallic edge (which can be readily heard on the HEV70). The Omega2's sounded great in this dept as well.
If I were to only have these two phones, I wouldn't know what I was missing since they provide a very enjoyable experience. However, the reason the HE90 cannot be compared and why it is so much better has to do with the fact that it does things these other headphones do NOT even attempt:
1) Vertical soundstage. This is for real. The sound is large, like speakers. The K1000 does amazing horizontal soundstage, but vertical soundstage gives a whole new dimension of realism to the sound.
2) Depth. Vertical soundstage coupled with depth allows these headphones to project sounds both seemingly from inside of your listening perspective (as if I was singing the lyrics for instance) and out and away from you. Sometimes at the same time in the song. Much of 1) and 2) have to do with the large diaphragm the headphones have that covers your ears entirely.
3) This last point brings me to the "disappearing act" effect. Several of us commented on how, when we put the HE90's on, we completely lose awareness of any external sounds, chit chat whatever. With other headphones, outside noise becomes an issue, especially for critical listening. Not with the HE90 to a large extent (but obviously within limits). It seems to envelop our ears ability to focus and concentrate. With the headphones on, it is almost as if our ears are pushed to magnetically focus entirely on the music. This is almost like a very natural external noise canceling effect. This effect is startling because the volume does NOT have to be very high to hear it. Put on another pair of headphones like the HE60's or Omega2's and even raise the volume, and still, external sounds can be distinguished.
If I was to make a comment on the Omega2, in regards to all the headphones we heard, it would definitely be the midrange, and its fun almost bloated but euphonic bass presentation (which may be controlled better with another amp/tubes).