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Stax SR-404 Limited. Which amp?

post #1 of 50
Thread Starter 
Hi.
I've just bought a new Stax SR-404 Limited,
which amp do you prefer?

Thanks in advance.

Stefano
post #2 of 50
Congrats on a nice purchase, if the initial impressions from Japan are true, it should be much better than the standard SR-404.
Usually tube amps do the best job with Lambdas. The SRM-007t is probably the best choice, but the SRM-T1 offers better bang for the buck. Its successor, the SRM-006t isn't nearly as good as the T1 even they are supposed to be almost identical.
The SRM-313 is poor, the upgraded SRM-323ii is probably a bit better but not as good as a T1 or an SRM-1/MK2, if you prefer a solid state amp.
I suggest to read more about it in the Stax thread, where you can find even more useful information.
post #3 of 50
I am not sure anyone around here have actually heard an SR-404 Limited.
A lot of us have heard or own(ed) the SR-404 though, and found it to be a nice match with the SRM-007t (like padam). No idea how much you would benefit from something like the HeadAmp KGBH SE, RSA A-10, Woo Audio WES, and such though.

Welcome to Head-Fi!
post #4 of 50
I don't know of anybody that has a set of SR-404LE's yet (though I will be receiving my set soon) so the only impressions are from Japan. I'm not expecting any fundamental changes to the stock sound (too bad since the SR-404 sucks) so an amp that dulls down the very noticeable upper midrange coloration would be in order.
post #5 of 50
Potter...the srm1/mk2 pro amps play well with all the lambda's. ..especially the Lambda pro's. And probably the best bang for the buck in the amps as it will play the normal bias too. Not enough people out there yet to tell if tube or ss better for it. You are one of the first to have it...so get an amp and tell up what you think!!! Too bad you are so far away...
post #6 of 50
Lambda Pros are quite different to SR-404s, if it turns out that the 'problems' hadn't been fixed then it will definitely need a good tube amp to at least tame the peak a little bit. The 006t is known to have a similar kind of coloration so it should be avoided.
post #7 of 50
Didn't the 404 Limited just receive leather earpads?

~Phewl.
post #8 of 50
DHL notified me that PriceJapan has shipped my SR-404 Limited today so it should be in my hands in a couple of days. I will be driving it with both the SRM-717 and SRM-007tA. I'll compare it to my SR-404 Signature and post my findings in a few days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by spritzer View Post
I'm not expecting any fundamental changes to the stock sound (too bad since the SR-404 sucks) so an amp that dulls down the very noticeable upper midrange coloration would be in order.
I think you're being a bit oversensitive to the slight upper midrange coloration. I actually prefer the SR-404 to the O2 with some recordings that need a bit more presence. It's good to have both!
post #9 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by WilCox View Post
I think you're being a bit oversensitive to the slight upper midrange coloration. I actually prefer the SR-404 to the O2 with some recordings that need a bit more presence. It's good to have both!
Actually several people here hate the SR-404 for the exact same reason, so I don't think it is a slight coloration. Personally, I only heard it with the SRM-1/MK2 it for a short time when I was a 'rookie', but it just didn't sound right to me(good, but flawed). I really like this comparison: http://www.head-fi.org/forums/4733161-post8106.html
post #10 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by WilCox View Post
I think you're being a bit oversensitive to the slight upper midrange coloration. I actually prefer the SR-404 to the O2 with some recordings that need a bit more presence. It's good to have both!
No other ESP has turned as many people off electrostatics as the SR-404 so I highly doubt I'm too sensitive. Just this last month I persuaded a member here to give the SR-007 a shot after he had been scarred by the SR-404. The midrange coloration on the SR-007A/Mk2 is slight (but enough to utterly ruin the phones for me) but the coloration on the SR-404 is as obvious as being hit in the head with a hammer. It took extreme damping and a complete rebuild of the phones to get rid of it.
post #11 of 50

Stax SR-404 Limited. Which amp?

I started my own thread on this before finding this one, so now I'm joining in here.

spritzer answered me there: "I know that prices for new Stax gear in Germany are nuts so you should be looking to buy used, the older amps are also better then the new ones."

I am planning to buy direct from Japan and get a voltage converter, because prices here in Germany are 2.5 times what they are from Japan...

And seeing the comments about the tonal balance of the 404 I will probably go with my first gut reaction and get the SRM-007t.

I read somewhere that the different voltage versions of Stax amps use the same transformer but with jumpers inside which can be changed. Does anyone know if this is true?

best
Nic
post #12 of 50
Stax amps for all regions use the same transformer but have to be changed internally for the correct voltage. Stax has been known to make this hard on the 100v units by cutting wires etc.
post #13 of 50
The 404's upper midrange peak certainly scared me off 'stats for a while, and it took some faith to get back into them again, though I'm glad I did.

In most other respects the 404 does very well, but then that peak comes in and completely ruins their tonality, and makes whatever they do well irrelevant. It's like taking a great sports car and making it side-wheel drive.

But I do have to admit that I listen to tonality first of all, and I'm very sensitive to this sort of thing.
post #14 of 50
I got my hands on a pair of SR-404 LIMITED headphones last Saturday here in Tokyo. I've only used them for a few hours so far, so they aren't run in yet, but I'd say that they are a definite improvement over the standard 404 in terms of texture, resolution and - last but not least - comfort.
Recommended.
post #15 of 50
^ Sweet! Many of us have waited for the first SR-404 Limited to land, and the impressions to come. Great to hear that its most likely an audible improvement over the SR-404.

Welcome to Head-Fi!
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