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Denon AH-D7000 Appreciation Society - Page 3

post #31 of 521
Hey. Do the Denons become increasingly difficult to drive as one goes up the line (D2000 to D5000 to D7000)?
post #32 of 521
Thanks for starting this thread, Wovenhand. I was ready to post the D7000 love thread about three days after bringing them home, but at that time only a few folks had them. It has been a lot of fun to see more and more members chiming in and enjoying them as much as I do. It is good to have a place to meet with like-minded members and gush about them without restraint.  I have yet to subscribe to a thread at HeadFi; this one I will!

So, let me contribute something meaty to our new little ‘association’:

These are the first headphones that I have found that are completely satisfying to me in that they fit my tastes well, bring multiple true high-end aspects to their sound signature, seem to handle every genre that I have thrown at them with aplomb, and have no deal-breakers. That last one is pretty big, as settling on a #1 headphone for me is like Seinfeld trying to choose on a girlfriend. Here are a few of my deal-breakers and the headphones sent packing because of them: excessive brightness (W5000), insufficient quantity and quality of bass (K701), smallish sound/headstage (RS1), poor fit (K1000), and prohibitive price (L3000).

For my tastes and the music I listen to, the D7000s are nearly ideal. For me, it all starts with the lower end. I love bass and I love funky music that features it. Even with other kinds of music that do not really emphasize or rely on the lower end, I still prefer to be able to enjoy whatever bass is there. When I audition headphones, I look to the bass first and want to see that it runs deep, is prominent but not overwhelming, shows good definition and speed, and still has something very, very special on top of it all.

I have owned two pairs of headphones that completely satisfy my demanding bass needs: the L3000 and the D7000. I would really like to have them both side-by-side to compare and contrast, but the L3000s are gone (see above). Perhaps the L3000s do surpass the D7000s in most ways, but I am not so sure without having them at the same time. My sense is that they are equally impressive but just in different ways. However, I do feel quite confident about this point; if someone offered to give me either pair for free with the knowledge that they would be the only headphones I could own, I would grab the D7000s without hesitation. Outside of the bass, everything else about the sound signatures is tipped towards the D7000s for me. Throw in the price as a factor, and it is no contest.

A few other points of adoration-

-I really like bright phones but too bright is a problem. I love the GS1000s but they are too bright at more involving volume levels. The D7000s just hit it perfectly. Occasionally a little bright toe just crosses the line, but 99% of the time, they get it just how I like it.

-They have a very speaker-like sound- deep, rich, big, full-bodied.

-They are perfectly comfortable. The D5000s were the king of comfort for me, but these are better. I have tried on a few too-loose D5000s at audio stores, and the D7000s are a bit tighter but in no way uncomfortable.

-I think they amp well. I have tried them with a variety of respectable amps (tubes: Leben CS3000, HA-02 and SS: HA5000, Apache, CEC 53Rv8) and the sound signature changes slightly but they always sound great. I have yet to find an amp that somehow made them sound bad, even cheap ones (RA1, Marantz DV9500 headphone jack). I do not at all feel like I need to keep trying different amps to get them to sound acceptable (I am thinking of you GS1000s!). At the same time, they do scale up well and allow great amps to shine. They are quite neutral and so you can flavor them via amps quite nicely. I love what my Leben does in terms of soundstage, warmth, and sparkle but the Apache definitely provided more resolution.

-They are expensive, but not like the rare out-of-production headphones. If they settle in the $650 range, I would say they are a down-right bargain in comparison to flagship models from other manufacturers.

-They are gorgeous. Not eye-catching like L3000s or R10s, but they look and feel as luxurious as they sound.

-They do poor recordings very well. Sibilance is almost a non-issue.

-In fact, these are the best all-rounders I have ever heard. I have yet to hear a genre, artist, album that the D7000s do not handle well. I don’t feel like I need to change headphones every time I change the type of music I am listening to.

And now for the reality check-

Are they alien technology from the future? No. They are headphones and sound like headphones. They are a significant step up from the D5000s but clearly retain a very similar sound signature. I have owned or heard a few legends (K1000, L3000, Omega II, HP1000) and feel that they fit right in with that crowd (for my tastes, I would still take the D7000s over any of those). I have never heard the R10s, PS1s, Qualias or the Orpheus’. I do not think they are some revolutionary product, just dang good.

As far as my tastes go, I honestly do not feel that they have a weakness and I never feel like they are lacking when listening to music. But, I can identify a few areas that could be tweaked to make them even more impressive. First, they will never become famous for the size of their sound/head stage. I do so love a big soundstage and will pass on very good headphones without one. The soundstage is not like the K701s or GS1000s but it is still more than good enough for me. I also love detailed headphones. They are not hyper-detailed like the GS1000s or CD3000s but they are still very detailed. Finally, the bass is not the same hard-hitting, speed demon type found on the L3000s or the Ultrasones. But it is not far off and it has soooo much more going on that just may not be available if engineered primarily for speed. When I first got them, I thought they were a touch slow. Either my brain has adjusted or the issue disappeared with burn-in. My Ultrasone 780’s still hit harder but no longer sound faster.

One thing I like is that there are some mods out there that can be applied to the Denons DIY or through a service. Thanks MarkL. Do I think the D7000s NEED to be modded? Absolutely not. Will I try some of the mods? Probably. Specifically, I would like to stuff the pads and maybe try one of the larger woodie cups to see what that does to the sound stage. As far as the damping goes, I am much less interested. If it speeds the bass up a bit and makes it a little more hard-hitting, that would be fine but not at the expense of anything else that I love about the bass. I had the MD2000s with APS v3 for a little while for comparison and while they were extremely impressive, I am not sure that the full mod will move the D7000 bass in a direction that I like. At the very least, the option is there. Maybe later when the D7000s are completely familiar will I see about tweaking. At the moment, I just see no need to void my warranty.

Could they be replaced? Absolutely. If another pair of headphones comes around that bests them for my tastes and price range, I will gladly say “Thank you very much” followed by a friendly “Smell ya later” as I see the D7000s out the door. But, it would all start in the lower end. They would have to have an equally special bass (or better, a guy can dream!), have a completely agreeable sound signature, reasonable price, good comfort, bigger soundstage, more details, etc. and yet still not sacrifice anything critical. When I find that, I will move on with an even bigger smile on my face. I am a big fan of the D7000s, but not an irrational fanboy.


Now, for a little more love to wrap things up.

If you search my posts, you will find a respectable period of time that I gushed almost entirely about the GS1000s. I went through many headphones to find them and was quite satisfied despite a few short comings (too bright and not perfect all-rounders). I was really hoping for a complementary phone to replace the L3000s when I brought the Denons home. Previously when I auditioned new headphones, I patiently listened and cycled through my standard demo tracks trying to get a handle on the signature, but before long, I would reach over for my GS1000s and say “ahhhhh…. that is what I want to hear.” The D5000s went like that, but not the D7000s. The first day of listening I was just impressed how good they sounded right out of the box. The second day it began to dawn on me that these headphones could actually challenge my Grado’s top dog title. On the third day, it was clear that this was a complete knock-out. It was entirely unexpected. Three months or so on, the Denons are essentially the only headphones I listen to. The GS1000s will go to my office and the other potential ‘side-kicks’ are being prepped for sale. Yes, I can enjoy a little variety, but everything else I have just seems noticeably lacking and only stays on my head long enough for a quick check to see what the sound signature is like with this or that particular track.

I have listened to many headphones and many of them were very very good, even those with serious deal-breakers. But with the D7000s, I feel that I have reached some kind of headphone nirvana where everything is at peace and I can just focus on enjoying my favorite music and exploring new genres, artists, albums and tracks. If something new and better comes along, I am all for it. But, I am not desperately hunting for it any more.

I am sure they are not for everyone, but they are definitely for me!
post #33 of 521
Gu Sensei, the pad mod is cheap and takes but a small chunk of change, and provides immediate results. I'd say you should give it a shot at your soonest convenience.
post #34 of 521
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taikero View Post
Gu Sensei, the pad mod is cheap and takes but a small chunk of change, and provides immediate results. I'd say you should give it a shot at your soonest convenience.
Taikero, actually, I have tried it already. I swapped pads when I had the MD2000s. I didnt find the change too drastic, but it was noticeable and I liked it. As described, I really love huge soundstage headphones. The K701s were my number one before the GS1000s because of the soundstage. If the K1000s were a bit more comfortable to wear, they would be keepers for sure. I am all for a bigger soundstage with the Denon line. I will get around to it before too long, but I want to really get to know these headphones before I start messing with a sound signature that I already find wonderful. Also, I am enjoying that I can completely like them right out of the box.
post #35 of 521
Gu Sensei,
It may be a while but there will be time when people realize that the mads ( not a typo) take away the very thing I like most about the Denons. To me the bass is not bloated, it's just "Real".
I can't feel the bass in any other can I own. The Beyers could put out the bass and fairly clearly but the Denons make you "feel" the bass. They are soooo spacious and real like the music is part of you not just going into your ears.
post #36 of 521
Quote:
Originally Posted by boomy3555 View Post
Gu Sensei,
It may be a while but there will be time when people realize that the mads ( not a typo) take away the very thing I like most about the Denons. To me the bass is not bloated, it's just "Real".
I can't feel the bass in any other can I own. The Beyers could put out the bass and fairly clearly but the Denons make you "feel" the bass. They are soooo spacious and real like the music is part of you not just going into your ears.
This is why I'm considering doing the earpad mod, maybe a bit of Dynamating on the frame/back of the driver (not to the wood), and that's probably it, unless I add a bit of fiberloft in the cups to dampen the bass a tiny bit to slightly balance them out for my taste (if the earpad mod/Dynamating the frame doesn't do it already). I still want the sound to bounce off the wood, I think.

I like the bass in my D5000 mostly as is, but I want it to become slightly more controlled. I don't think I'll make any real changes beyond the earpad mod before my KICAS makes it here, because a proper amp might help tighten everything up and I might not need more than a little fiberloft in the pads. We'll see.

Also, sorry for hijacking to talk about my D5000. I just don't own a D7000 so I can't really make comments here other than when posts concerning generic topics (like modding) come up.
post #37 of 521
I too have only unmodded 5k's but if the stock on the 7k's at Amazon can hold out until my Tax return Direct deposits into my account this Friday then I will be a new proud owner.
I just refuse to pay full retail.
They say that the better bass control in the 7k's makes the modds a moot point
post #38 of 521
I like the tactile feeling of the bass of the D7000 but it is much less present than with the D5000s, which was a bit much for my taste. Again, for now, I am quite happy with the entire presentation of the D7000s but it is cool there are specific instructions for some tweaks that can be applied to adjust a Denon if so desired.

I suspect the price of the D7000s will settle a bit in the $600 range. Considering the going rate for high end phones, I think that price is quite a bargain.
post #39 of 521
Quote:
I have tried on a few too-loose D5000s at audio stores, and the D7000s are a bit tighter but in no way uncomfortable.
Do you think that - if the D5000 was too large for me (I have a small/narrow dome) - that the D7k would fit better?
post #40 of 521
Quote:
Originally Posted by xenithon View Post
Do you think that - if the D5000 was too large for me (I have a small/narrow dome) - that the D7k would fit better?
Yes, that would be my guess. The grip is noticeably firmer, but not unpleasant or distracting in any way. I thought the D5000s I owned were extremely comfortable, just a touch on the loose side. But, I suspect they may loose their grip with time as many of the demo pairs I put on at audio stores feel very loose.

In efforts to find music that wasnt well suited for the D7000s last night, I dug deep into my music collection and pulled out some good ole hardcore punk: Minor Theat, Angry Samoans, and Dead Kennedys. The Angry Samoans really got my head bobbing and I realized just what an excellent grip they have as they stayed put quite well.

You could also do the pad mods described by MarkL. I would guess that would put some extra pressure if necessary.
post #41 of 521
Thanks for the info. The issue in my case wasn't so much the pressure (though there was barely any clamping force at all) but the cups sat too too even with the headband at its shortest position. The drivers thus fired at the lower portion of the ear rather than directly into it.
post #42 of 521
I haven't done any official comparison, but I have both the D7000s and L3000s on hand right now (both stock). In my opinion the L3000s still have a slight edge over the Denons in most categories.

But that doesn't detract at all from how much I love my D7000's. The D7000's have better highs alongside a comparable bass (I still think the L3000's bass texture is unmatched). Listening to my L3000's there are definitely times I miss the highs I get from the D7000s.

To put things in perspective:
I'm quite the opposite of Gu Sensei; my ears are very sensitive toward the higher frequencies. So for me the D7000s and the L3000s are simply great compliments for each other.
post #43 of 521
Cool. It is good to find someone with both the D7000 and L3000. I am sure I just need to hear it for myself, but I am curious to see if the L3000 offers both the speed, impact, great texture that I love about the its bass AND can put out one thing I specifically love about the D7000 bass- the decay (or possibly 'bloom' but that term ain't in Describing Sound Glossary, at least on the first page and my vocabulary feels limited as I try to describe this specific aspect). That decay/bloom/?better descriptor? makes it sound like the bass notes are breathing- exhaling and inhaling; more organic or alive maybe (sorry, I am struggling for the right analogy) and not just hitting with the leading edge. The JVC DX1000 has it, but the bass sounds a couple steps slower than the D7000s. The HiFi 780s and MD2000s have less than the D7000s I feel. Does any of my poor description resonate with you (pun intended)? Can you hear a difference between the two in this aspect?

Actually, my ears are fairly sensitive to highs as well, but my tastes still run that way. This is big point for me as the D7000s give me great highs but not painful ones. The L3000 signature was quite easy on the ears, but just a bit too dark(?) for my preferences to really serve as a One Can to Rule Them All.
post #44 of 521
Quote:
Originally Posted by xenithon View Post
Thanks for the info. The issue in my case wasn't so much the pressure (though there was barely any clamping force at all) but the cups sat too too even with the headband at its shortest position. The drivers thus fired at the lower portion of the ear rather than directly into it.
Ahh... I get it. As I check now, yep, mine are fully pushed in. If I pull them out even one notch, it does not feel right. I never really noticed it and can see how this could be troublesome for someone with a little less length or girth. I suppose you could pad the underside of the band or wrap it or something, but I can imagine not wanting to deal with that. Bummer, what are you going to do?
post #45 of 521
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lornecherry View Post
could some contrast the HD650 (or 600's) with D7000's. I know the Sens well, but have never heard the Denons.
Lorne,
I'd give you a longer description if I had the time. But, luckily, there's no need to be long-winded in answering your question. I know the Senns well. The Denon is much better in every regard. It's a massacre.

My #1 favorite is still the JVC DX1000, for the midrange and the gigantic soundstaging (there's just endless fun there). But the D7000 is my king of top-to-bottom neutrality. No major "wow factor", unlike the DX1000, but still supremely involving and transparent, with fantastic PRaT.

Hope this helps.
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