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Stax SR-404 Limited. Which amp? - Page 4

post #46 of 50
Most of that 6moons article is just marketing fluff since they aren't running at voltages anywhere near where this coating would be needed. Sound Lab are running at 12kV+ so any insulation you can apply will be a good thing and they use something similar on their diaphragms. That said the coating does have a large role to play when it comes to the life expectancy of the panels. Some older models used graphite coatings and since they absorb moisture their resistance drops which is never a good idea. As Audiostatic proved in the 70's you don't really need coating on headphones since the drivers are so small and the voltages relatively low but I've never seen a headphone with untreated mylar. Stax most definitely coats the mylar but they will never divulge what they use.

Stax did start the whole "thinner is better" as a way to market the "improved" models which often enough looked exactly like the older models. They went down to 1um with the Lambda Signature/Sigma Pro but as a part of the grand rethinking of electrostatic headphones project (which resulted in the SR-Omega) they went back to 1.5um and then settled on 1.35um.
post #47 of 50
OK. Well, I was really more hoping you could have advised if the new ESLs are generally good designs. But, from what you say, I guess you might rate them, but depending on whether their voltage requirement is fully met?
As we don't seem to be getting much interest from other Head-fiers on this thread (not one other person wants to post!) I hope it would be OK to PM you with the voltage details for my Cadences? Much thank for clarifying re the longevity situation though- I don't fancy shipping the panels back to India a second time!
post #48 of 50
Thanks to guidance and help from Spritzer and HeadphoneAddict, I am now the proud owner of a pair of 404LE. While I have very little recent Lambda experience, I can say that they are exactly what I hoped they would be...I perfect compliment to my O2's. They have an air on top, open midrange, and bass slam that neither my O2 Mk1 or Mk2 have without any issues or rough areas. They are just a great pair Lambdas. I will be bashed for preferring the 02 Mk2 to the Mk1 and the things I like about my Mk1 over the Mk2, the 404LE does better. They are not better than the Mk1 by any means, I just prefer them as an overall package on my system.

I am running an SRM-717 which seems about perfect for the 404LE but if the SRM-600 has enough current to keep the bass slam that I really love, it could be a very special sound. Time will tell.
post #49 of 50
Originally Posted by nicolashodges View Post
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?

2.5 times? That is ridiculous as price of Stax is already sky rocking as it is.

Originally Posted by kg21 View Post
I owned the sr-404 and srm-007t and yeah it was a great combo, best headphone+amp combo I've owned. Would have kept it but that was too much money invested in audio at that point, and now as well but I am glad I tried it.
When the the last time you heard Hi-Fi is cheap? But I love this hobby.

Originally Posted by JecklinStax View Post
I got mine this week from PriceJapan.com! No need for photo's; it looks just like the pictures on the Stax website. The black finish is beautiful: a lot better than the drab brown of the 404 Signature, and it goes wonderfully with my black SRM T1; the gold lettering on the amp matches the gold accents on the cable nicely too......
That is very educational, thanks for sharing.

Originally Posted by spritzer View Post
The major tweak in the SR-404LE is inside the drivers plus the new earpads and not the cable. Swapping cables on Stax phones makes a minimal difference at best.

I've never heard a Kimik amp but I know the circuit well and I really can't see how they could offer much improvement without some serious work on the amp. Replace the simple PSU's with a fully regulated units and dispose of those crappy 6CG7's once and for all would be my first course of action. Most of the stock amp would be discarded though so not really possible to do but some better tubes aren't worth what they are charging. Anybody can put in some well matched tubes and bias the amp down to 0v.
I got some UK made 6CG7 should do better.

Just bought 404LE, but left no money for an amp for a while

Special thank to spritzer for contributing to this community.
post #50 of 50
Woo Audio has 404LE's in stock. Just ordered mine.
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