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K1000 Room Impression Thread - Page 6

post #76 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by foo_me View Post
Switching to my capitole player, everything was the opposite...muddy and limited soudstage. Good, but not great...not the sound that I heard from the air tight/ayre 5xe combination that I had previously demoed.
Was not going to buy it.
Luckily for me and him, the seller was a great guy and took the time out to try different tubes, different ICs, and power cords.
Everything completely changed.
Still not equivalent to the emm labs/zanden combo, but 85-90% there. It's missing the extra body that made the sound so balanced and dynamic.

This is a great amp...the sound is incredible and I like the fact that it can grow and improve by changing anything that's attached to it.
Wouldn't say it's better or worse than the air tight that i demoed, just that they both have the same potential depending upon what components and tubes are used with it.
Given that, I can just imagine what Nik's system must sound like given the amount of tweaking he has done for it.

Unfortunately, getting that last X% might lead me to an emm labs source and other expensive components.
But that's for another day...for now, enjoying the k1000 ALOT and just plan on listening to music for a while...
So the Zanden and Moth take top honors, but what does this mean to you and future upgrades for your K1000 rig?

I'm hooked on K1000s, and look to threads like this to learn from others' experiences, and naturally hoping for reinforcement that "...yeah, I did the right thing(s) building my rig -- and yes, K1000 really ARE a world-class headphone."

But there's something I just can't get out of my mind: “Systems not driven by foo_me’s Capitole were greatly handicapped." [A careful read of foo_me's comments above only reinforces my thinking.]

I was not there, so set me straight if I'm off track -- but as far as I can tell there were two constants: (1.) With exception of the Sig 30, all rigs started with AC from the same Power Company, and (2.) attendees heard music reproduced by AKG's dynamic transducers. Beyond these, taking into account the various pigtails, hardwires, ICs. etc., the potential variables were vast.

Ahhhh, but there was another constant wasn't there? With the exception of the Zanden and Moth, all (or at least most???) rigs were driven from the same streaming source graciously supplied by Slim Devises and Headroom, right?

To my point...

1.) Source matters. A lot. The Audio aero Capitole Mk.II se retails somewhere around $8,700. And what source does Headroom use as their reference? If I'm not mistaken, it's a top-of-the-line Wadia -- likely at a similar price point.

2.) Cables (even AC cords) matter. Even in foo_me's comments, he indicated that it was only after a few tweaks to tubes / cables and such that the Zanden became magical.

3.) Once you have a good source / amp, ICs begin to take on an increasingly important role in what you hear. In my personally experience, the difference in resolution and soundstage between an AudioQuest copper and Hudson Audio AudioPath 8-wire silver IC ($275) was nothing short of astounding.

So what do this mean to you? (IMHO)

- The Zanden and Moth received great accolades throughout this thread -- deservedly so. But it takes more than a great amp (and great headphones) to deliver great sound. Synergy between EVERY component in the audio chain matters.

- For those who already own an F1 or Signature 30 driven by a Lavry DA10 or maybe a Benchmark DAC-1 with XYZ ICs, you may want look beyound your amp -- and set your sights on upgrading to better ICs, or maybe a high-end CDP, and possibly even experiment with power cable upgrades (read number 17 in this review: http://www.head-fi.org/forums/showthread.php?t=221635 for example) as ways to bring your system closer to the audio nirvana you experienced from the Zanden.

- Don’t get me wrong – amps matter. But once you hit the level of a relatively affordable F1 or Signature 30 (or maybe a used Moth or similar tube amp [with the right tubes]), the remaining components in your rig may become primary limiting factors in what you hear.

Again I was not there, and these are only my opinions, but after playing with 3 amps, a few ICs, balanced vs. unbalanced, with and w/o a sub woofer, I can tell you that even my (entry level) Wadia 830 CDP (with factory upgraded power supply and aftermarket power cord) and $275 (AudioPath) IC, matched with the relatively inexpensive RWA Signature 30 amp delivers an extremely open, detailed and natural sound. Put head-to-head with foo_me’s rig, mine would undoubtedly fall a few steps short. But I doubt it would be considered a Class-level downgrade.

In contrast, substitute a DAC-1 for the Wadia in my system, and I would not be surprised if the result turned out to be noticeable to the point it could be classified as a Class-level downgrade (I base this on my own experience comparing the Wadia to a DAC-1 – I do not have personal experience with the Squeezbox or any other mid-priced DAC).

Just my 2cents, but I hope these comments add perspective for those who have now heard the best, and wonder where they go from here to upgrade their K1000 rig.
post #77 of 236
Forgive me for asking: Was the Sig 30 even represented at the Meet?????
This is important to me as I am thinking about upgrading. Where is the love?
post #78 of 236
Good points alwayswantmore!
post #79 of 236
Yup I agree...and I never really thought it was a big difference until I did hear the Zanden with different sources and interconnects. I know the difference between subtle and instant awareness. For the most part, I have always heard subtle changes with equipment--not this time.
That being said, I wouldn't say that listening to the k1000 was greatly handicapped, but would say that you're not hearing the real potential of the amp or the k1000 if you're not using good sources and interconnects and if you're not using them, then it's pointless to upgrade to an amp like the Zanden.

One head-fier at the meet mentioned that he couldn't hear the difference between the benchmark headphone amp and the singlepower extreme amp. I do not doubt that he couldn't...but in situations like this, it could be many things including what alwayswantmore has described...system synergy matters and maybe some piece along the chain was a limiting factor in reproducing the music.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Alwayswantmore View Post
To my point...

1.) Source matters. A lot. The Audio aero Capitole Mk.II se retails somewhere around $8,700. And what source does Headroom use as their reference? If I'm not mistaken, it's a top-of-the-line Wadia -- likely at a similar price point.

2.) Cables (even AC cords) matter. Even in foo_me's comments, he indicated that it was only after a few tweaks to tubes / cables and such that the Zanden became magical.

3.) Once you have a good source / amp, ICs begin to take on an increasingly important role in what you hear. In my personally experience, the difference in resolution and soundstage between an AudioQuest copper and Hudson Audio AudioPath 8-wire silver IC ($275) was nothing short of astounding.
post #80 of 236
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ken36 View Post
Forgive me for asking: Was the Sig 30 even represented at the Meet?????
This is important to me as I am thinking about upgrading. Where is the love?
The Sig didn't get a lot of love because it wasn't connected to a source as much as some of the other amps. We had some issues with power cords (not for the Sig 30) and IC's. Also, once the Zanden entered the picture, some other gear was pushed aside. The Sig 30 is an excellent amp for both high efficient speakers and the K1000. It is off the grid (battery), produces no heat and sounds great. For me, I preferred the F1 but it wasn't by a large margin. In some ways I regretted selling it in favor of the F1 as the heat it produces in conjunction with the ZD is too much. The Sig is a contender. The Zanden was amazing but it's in an entirely different price range.
post #81 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alwayswantmore View Post
So the Zanden and Moth take top honors, but what does this mean to you and future upgrades for your K1000 rig?

I'm hooked on K1000s, and look to threads like this to learn from others' experiences, and naturally hoping for reinforcement that "...yeah, I did the right thing(s) building my rig -- and yes, K1000 really ARE a world-class headphone."

But there's something I just can't get out of my mind: “Systems not driven by foo_me’s Capitole were greatly handicapped." [A careful read of foo_me's comments above only reinforces my thinking.]

I was not there, so set me straight if I'm off track -- but as far as I can tell there were two constants: (1.) With exception of the Sig 30, all rigs started with AC from the same Power Company, and (2.) attendees heard music reproduced by AKG's dynamic transducers. Beyond these, taking into account the various pigtails, hardwires, ICs. etc., the potential variables were vast.

Ahhhh, but there was another constant wasn't there? With the exception of the Zanden and Moth, all (or at least most???) rigs were driven from the same streaming source graciously supplied by Slim Devises and Headroom, right?

To my point...

1.) Source matters. A lot. The Audio aero Capitole Mk.II se retails somewhere around $8,700. And what source does Headroom use as their reference? If I'm not mistaken, it's a top-of-the-line Wadia -- likely at a similar price point.

2.) Cables (even AC cords) matter. Even in foo_me's comments, he indicated that it was only after a few tweaks to tubes / cables and such that the Zanden became magical.

3.) Once you have a good source / amp, ICs begin to take on an increasingly important role in what you hear. In my personally experience, the difference in resolution and soundstage between an AudioQuest copper and Hudson Audio AudioPath 8-wire silver IC ($275) was nothing short of astounding.

So what do this mean to you? (IMHO)

- The Zanden and Moth received great accolades throughout this thread -- deservedly so. But it takes more than a great amp (and great headphones) to deliver great sound. Synergy between EVERY component in the audio chain matters.

- For those who already own an F1 or Signature 30 driven by a Lavry DA10 or maybe a Benchmark DAC-1 with XYZ ICs, you may want look beyound your amp -- and set your sights on upgrading to better ICs, or maybe a high-end CDP, and possibly even experiment with power cable upgrades (read number 17 in this review: http://www.head-fi.org/forums/showthread.php?t=221635 for example) as ways to bring your system closer to the audio nirvana you experienced from the Zanden.

- Don’t get me wrong – amps matter. But once you hit the level of a relatively affordable F1 or Signature 30 (or maybe a used Moth or similar tube amp [with the right tubes]), the remaining components in your rig may become primary limiting factors in what you hear.

Again I was not there, and these are only my opinions, but after playing with 3 amps, a few ICs, balanced vs. unbalanced, with and w/o a sub woofer, I can tell you that even my (entry level) Wadia 830 CDP (with factory upgraded power supply and aftermarket power cord) and $275 (AudioPath) IC, matched with the relatively inexpensive RWA Signature 30 amp delivers an extremely open, detailed and natural sound. Put head-to-head with foo_me’s rig, mine would undoubtedly fall a few steps short. But I doubt it would be considered a Class-level downgrade.

In contrast, substitute a DAC-1 for the Wadia in my system, and I would not be surprised if the result turned out to be noticeable to the point it could be classified as a Class-level downgrade (I base this on my own experience comparing the Wadia to a DAC-1 – I do not have personal experience with the Squeezbox or any other mid-priced DAC).

Just my 2cents, but I hope these comments add perspective for those who have now heard the best, and wonder where they go from here to upgrade their K1000 rig.

Very good points. Sources and cables would change the resolution and image. For K1000, hardwired is a must. I never felt that way so strong for any other headphones and speakers. Amps would change the character of the sound, resolution and spacing. ICs and power cables would do their jobs too, but we did not get change to do any thing on them.

Only Zenden and Moth were connected to foo_me’s Capitole and Voltron’s hardwired K1000. I bet some other amps (feed by Slim Devices and Headroom DAC, half factory and half Moon Audio cabled) would sound good in the same set up too.

If we had the same setting for other amps, I felt that they would have different characters, some would turn modern performance Steinway in the recording into a vintage Steinway (it is not necessary bad, some people like that way – warm); other amps would turn Steinway into a Boston (Boston & Steinway = Toyota & Lexus, it is bad). The winner for me should the one be able to reproduce the same piano with resolution and image – real music.

The difference between Zenden and Moth is that, I felt the music reproduced by Zenden sounded as a truth piano in a concert hall, while for Moth with less resolution, less spacing and warmer tone, the music were not as real as Zenden produced.
post #82 of 236
Voltron does the SAA hardwire on your pair bypass the circuit board? Or do all SAA hardwires keep it in place?
post #83 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by J-Pak View Post
Voltron does the SAA hardwire on your pair bypass the circuit board? Or do all SAA hardwires keep it in place?
x2 ----- And were stock AKG cables used between Zanden and K1000?
post #84 of 236
I think it was listened to with both stock and rewire/hardwires since Foo_me's pair is stock and there were the other kind available.
post #85 of 236

Woo5 and K1000

It will be interesting to hear people's impressions between the Woo5 and K1000...since the Woo5 has a dedicated K1000 plug, it would seem to me that not having the tail to deal with would help the overall sonics?
post #86 of 236
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stax-i-nox View Post
It will be interesting to hear people's impressions between the Woo5 and K1000...since the Woo5 has a dedicated K1000 plug, it would seem to me that not having the tail to deal with would help the overall sonics?
I brought jp11801's K1000 with the Mogami re-wire into the large meet room to use with the WA5. I really enjoyed it. I can't give you any detailed impressions as I don't have any. There was too much going on and I was only trying to get a feel for what will be my next amp.
post #87 of 236
And what about the Dussun?? Is that a v6i or v8i? How did that sound??

A friend has one hooked up to his B&W speakers, sounded pretty okay! Wondering how it'll sound through the K1000...

Edit: It's the v6i... Sorry that I missed that. It's late here and I'm tired, I've been studying Financial Statement Analysis for CFA...
post #88 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by J-Pak View Post
Voltron does the SAA hardwire on your pair bypass the circuit board? Or do all SAA hardwires keep it in place?
The board contains an equalizer circuit. Hard to imagine it you'll remove that with any cable substitution unless you use an external circuit to do the same.
post #89 of 236
Patrick82 hardwired his norost cable to the K1000 drivers having removed the filter circuit. To my knowledge this is the only such instance and I have always read "hardwire" with respect to the K1000 as being a recabling which connects to the filter PCB in place of the stock cable, rather than, alternatively, connecting a new cable via a 4-pin XLR after a length of stock cable.

Could someone (a K1K owner) possibly comment on the accuracy of this. Have I got it right?
post #90 of 236
Thread Starter 
I thought I would post an update. I just bought a pair of pristine K1K's that should be here on Thursday. Now I need a driver for the old pair, someone to install it and I have a back up, if needed.
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