I was at the meet yesterday and would like to thank the organizers for doing a great job. There sure was a mindboggling amount of gear there!
Some brief and random impressions (sorry, no pics)...
Yuin PK-1: They sounded OK. From memory, not quite sure they are better than the KSC75s I have. Bass seemed kind of boomy. I must have really small ears since they felt really big in my ears and kinda uncomfortable. I'm glad I tried them out before buying them online. I'm gonna stick with the Koss.
Audio Line Out had some beautiful woodied and recabled SR series Grados (SR60,80,225). The shape and size is nearly identical to OEM Grados. They don't have the shortened plastic forks and rounded outer edges ala Headphile. The wood working is superb (ALOT better than Grado can do). The guy said they will run $450 if he offers them. He said something like they take a long time for him to make and may not be profitable for him to make. He also said he is working on a leather headband as well. They sounded great from what I heard. Looks like Larry may have some competition.
I listened to high-end Audio Technicas (ATH5000 and L3000). I don't really like the sound. The sounded kind of thin and reverberant. Must be the closed design. They also did not fit my small head (cans were too wide). Some other guy said the same thing about the fit as I was listening to them.
I listened to the Sony Qualias out of Ray's B52. I thought they sounded a little too bright. The balanced Senn 600 sounded good out of his new SS Apache amp/preamp and Meridian CD player (a little on the bright side). It will sell for $2400 his wife said. Those Tomahawk amps are really tiny.
In TTVJ's room, I did an A/B/A comparison with the Grado GS-1000 (with Moon Audio recable) and stock RS-1 (using RSA Raptor amp/Meridian CD player). I definately still prefer the RS-1 as I did in the previous meet. GS-1K was a little too bright and the bass was loose IMO. The midrange was OK, certainly not as engaging as the RS-1. The recabled GS-1K also had too short of a cable above the Y-junction and felt like a chin strap on me.
To beat a dead horse again, I was appalled by the poor woodworking of the recabled GS-1000. It would be what I would call a "Late Friday GS-1000". I mean 4:59pm Friday, folks. The inner rim (near the black grills) had noticable splinters stuck to it on the surface, which were laquered over so you can't just scrape them off. The woodgrain was also ugly as sin, with a darker "stripe" running down the middle. I would be PO'ed if I paid $1200+ and got that can. The other recabled GS-1000 was noticably better finished but not great. Grado should consult with the Audio Line Out guy.
The balanced HD650 out of Headamp's GS-X sounded too bright to my ears (certainly no veil). Maybe it was the CD player used. I used to own the HD650/Zu + GS-1 and never thought they could sound like that.
The new top of the line Shures (successor to E500) sounded great, better than the entry level model.
The new Ultrasone cans ($1500) were really bass heavy. The built quality was very solid.
Justin told me the new modules for the GS-1 will be out in June, I think he said. I asked him how they will sound but he said it is hard to say since it will depend on many factors or something like that.
There was a NOS Grado HP-2 in one of the rooms in 100% mint condition. The guy won it at last years meet. I was reluctant to touch it since it looked like a museum piece. I can't imagine how much it will sell for nowadays.
The highlight of the show for me was Steve Hoffman's lecture on mastering and his interactions with legends like Ray Charles, McCartney, Elton John. Very infomative and entertaining. The Sehring speaker system TTVJ set up as part of his presentation sounded superb. The small bookshelf speakers really filled the room with clean sound (deep bass).
Finally, I would like to thank Asr. I was checking out his setup when he spontaneously offered me a free pair of NIB SR-60s. Wow!