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CanJam 2009 Impressions - Page 23  

post #331 of 636
Thread Starter 
Pics on 1st page updated with descriptions.
post #332 of 636

LAVRY Engineering ?

Anyone have any pics of the Lavry Engineering table?
I assume they had one as someone mentioned Dan and his wife were there but maybe not?
post #333 of 636
Wow! What a weekend!I don't even know where to start!

First off, thanks to JP11801 for spearheading everything and for that tasty beer he gave me. Many thanks to the other organizers as these things are never a one man show. We all tried to make each others life a bit easier and for that, I am thankful.

I was quietly going back and forth helping out with the event so I didn't get to listen to much the second day and listened to nothing at all the first day. My biggest pleasure (as always) was sharing my music with fellow members.

I did get a chance to briefly listen to The Shadow on the second day. While my listen was brief, it did sound smooth and warm. The thing is TINY! I am sure it will be a winner with many head-fi'ers.

Ray's Electrostat set-up was amazing. I played some Ella Fitzgerald on it and she sounded alive and well. The sound was fast and detailed yet smooth and warm.

Heed CanAmp: I won this at the first day raffle and have spent about 6 hours with it. I am surprised I have never heard of this amp before. It sounds fantastic and I am sure I am going to be using this amp a lot. I hooked up my D25s to this amp and played some jazz, classical, rock, etc. through the HF-2's, HD-600's and HP-2's. It handles everything beautifully. I want to spend more time with this before I write a definitive review, but 6 hours in, I am extremely happy to have this as my new main headphone amp.

HF-2's: Listened to these headphones for around 5 hours thanks to a fellow Head-Fi'er (Thanks Billy!) who lent them to me for the night. All of the music I played through it sounded nice. It might not be the last and final word on refinement but it does make everything sound good. That's something great in my book. If I had the money to burn, I would definitely get one. The main focus in our hobby should be the music, and a headphone that makes the music sound great is something we should all try to have. I think a vast majority would be happy with the HF-2.

JH13: In one word - AMAZING. The master of IEM's, Jerry Harvey, has made another masterpiece. I own the UE-10's and they are great but, sadly, a new champion reigns supreme - The JH13. Jerry is a super nice guy and allowed me to play some of my remasters on the JH13's. The detail, clarity and balance were much better than the UE-10's and the sound quality in general was phenomenal - better than the UE-10's again. I may have to sell some stuff and save some money because these are worth owning. Life is much too short for a music lover and every music lover should be pressed into buying these works of art. The sound really must be heard to be believed. Trust me - this is no flavor of the month - the JH13's provide amazing sound. Get your orders in people - this should be number 1 on your "To Buy" list. Me - I now have a coffee can labeled JH13 with $40 in it. I WILL have one eventually. To sum up - the best IEM I have ever heard.

Other stuff:

1) The Harley/Hoffman talk was amazing. Great music, great sound and lots of cool anecdotes shared by Joe Harley and Steve Hoffman. The good news for those of you living vicariously off this thread - I recorded BOTH talks in binaural sound for an upcoming Head-Fi podcast. It needs to be mastered a bit and edited, but you guys are in for a treat.

2) All of you! I may not have listened to much, but I always have a blast putting actual faces to the names and avatars together. Meeting you guys and chatting with you, however brief it may have been, it always the highlight of the meets. I only wish I had more time to have met more of you and chatted with you all about music and gear.

I hope all of you who attended had fun and I hope to see all of you again sometime in the near future.
post #334 of 636
Just a few pictures that I snapped on Sunday.

Frank Cooters Stat amps

Al's cable provider

Ironbuts awesome system

JP#'s Stacker Amp

Naaman's Blue Hawaii

Rockhopper's awesome Buffalo DAC

Grawk and my Begged, Borrowed and Stolen rig

Naaman's Bijou and B22

AMB's awesome B24 amp that when paired with his DIY speakers had everyone glued to their chairs at the end of the day on Friday.

Blubliss' ES-2

A quick shot of the loot I won/bought/picked up at the meet.
post #335 of 636
Did you get a chance to listen to PS-1000 or HD800 LFF?

You sold me on the JH13. I'm in. Now I will have to put the label on the jar and start saving also. I'm set with everything but a top level custom IEM.
post #336 of 636

New York, New York

The family that Can Jam together...

Mr. Woo must be an Allman Brothers fan because he handed me their latest prototype, The Peach, which had me eating a peach--literally. It had lovely tone, a round and full body, deliciously sweet. My small audition with the peach left me wanting more. Thanks for the refreshment.

Actually, the new prototype is Woo DAC. Woooooo! Woo!

The Woo family isn't the only NY family working hard to build a business. See Fang work his wife to death like a slave driver while he spends his time leisurely chatting with head-fi members about gear. Here she is quickly gulping down morning coffee before the crowd comes in...

Greeting customers...

surfing for the latest meet impressions on head-fi...

and left alone to pack up... Woman's work is never done.

... while Fang talks shop with Tyll

Fang, in expanding his ever growing lineup, introduced some new prototypes at the meet. The HiFiMan (I hope I got that right) looks like an unassuming walk man but is really an iPod killer. It's an SD card based drive + DAC + amp, using a very high quality DAC to get a one box portable sound solution worthy of the craziest of head-fi portables freaks. He also brought a prototype headphone using some kind of planar driver. It sounds very natural--like planar speakers. There's still one kink to work out--it uses a 4 ohm driver, and there aren't many headphone amps capable of driving it turned up to 11. Or even much past 3.

daveDerek wasn't expected, but decided late on Wednesday night to come to CanJam after all. He was scheduled to work, and from the looks of it, must've come straight from work without evenhaving time to change his clothes.

And Surprise! Surprise! Who's that over there? Romanee & wife managed to get away from more pressing business matters to make it to CanJam 2009 for a few hours

He didn't waste much time schmoozing... Right to business.

Oh, that's sweet

Not sure whether he's trying to say it's so-so or to pitch one low and inside

Well, that's all folks. Back to business.

What! I missed Romanee again?
post #337 of 636
Originally Posted by robm321 View Post
Did you get a chance to listen to PS-1000 or HD800 LFF?

You sold me on the JH13. I'm in. Now I will have to put the label on the jar and start saving also. I'm set with everything but a top level custom IEM.
Unfortunately - no. I completely missed out on listening to the PS-1000 AND the HD-800. Both were high on my list. However, being a staff member really killed all of our time to listen. I think JP11801 got to listen to what he wanted for all of 5 minutes.

You won't be sorry with the JH13. I own a ton of IEM's and have heard many of them as well. The JH13 is simple the best IEM available at the moment followed by the UE-10. Before yesterday, on a scale from 1 - 10 the UE-10 was...well... a 10 with the SE530 being a 7 and the UE-11 and Triple-Fi being a 5. Today, the JH13 is now a 10, the UE-10 is a 9 and the the SE530 is 6. Everything else is just not worth it IMHO. If your looking for an amazing, well balanced and detailed sound - the JH13 is it. I can only imagine how great it could be once it is a custom.

Jaspper994 and I are both IEM fanatics and between us both - we have probably heard nearly every IEM on the market. We both own UE-10's and felt they were the best...until the JH13. Both of us, despite owning the UE-10's, are now lusting over the JH13. It's number 1 on my "To Buy" list. Jerry Harvey really does have a winner here.
post #338 of 636

And the winner is...

After a lot of hard work

And a little hot air

We all gathered

To give everything to the new King of Bling

I bought a few of my own prizes
post #339 of 636
Originally Posted by LFF View Post
1) The Harley/Hoffman talk was amazing. Great music, great sound and lots of cool anecdotes shared by Joe Harley and Steve Hoffman. The good news for those of you living vicariously off this thread - I recorded BOTH talks in binaural sound for an upcoming Head-Fi podcast. It needs to be mastered a bit and edited, but you guys are in for a treat.

Ah, so you were the one holding up that dummy. It'll be interesting to hear what your recording sounds like compared to actually being there.
post #340 of 636

All good things must come to an end

Sadly, CanJam only lasts two days, and people must eventually depart to get back to their real lives. *@#"^%#@$

It's quite an exhausting experience for all

But packing up is never easy. Todd, did you find some new high-tech damping material, or is that a wad of chewing gum on the back?

Some of the vendors packed it in pretty quick

Most want to stay just a little bit longer

Others linger until it just has to be done

But eventually, even the Energizer Bunny begins to wind down

The member are always slow pack up

And there's always a few members that just want to keep on jamming

But eventually, even the members need to break it down

And there's always one member who flatly refuses to leave until you turn out the lights.
post #341 of 636
Love this small pic of me from the above photo SiBurning!

Reminds me of my original avatar.

post #342 of 636
First of all, I had a great time organizing and executing this fantastic meet. I was so happy to help everyone enjoy such a fun weekend. Although I ended up running the check-in area nearly all of Saturday, I still had a great time greeting all of my friends, old and new, as they arrived for the biggest headphone meet ever. In the end, I am just proud to have been part of a team that worked so hard to make this meet the best we could.

A big thanks to all the volunteers who helped us get through that mad onslaught of head-fiers, especially morphsci and zippy2001 who also put in a lot more time than they originally planned for. Also a big thanks to blessingx for closing out the day in the booth, and letting me have the time to listen a few of the big ol' list of new products.

So for now, here are some audio impressions. Pictures will be coming up ASAP. More people pics than gear pics, I must warn you

JH Audio JH13
Where do I begin? It has been an extremely long time, if at all, since and audio product has truly wowed me like this one did. Knowing Jerry Harvey's history, I knew his new products had the potential to be great, but I had no idea. Listening to the "universal" version of the JH13, I was simply blown away by their speed, detail, amazing low distortion, and clear, clean, neutral tone. They sounded every bit as fast and detailed as the planar headphones I listened to just prior.

Every track from every genre I threw at them only further confirmed my suspicions: this might be the custom IEM that I'd give up traditional headphones for. Following my listening experience, I felt the compulsion to tell everyone I came across "go listen to the JH13, NOW!" And nary a person I spoke to who'd taken a listen was anything less than thoroughly impressed, including UE10 and UE11 owners.

By the time I'd heard the JH13, I'd already listened to the HD800 on several rigs, and was finally starting to agree with some of the hype. However, the JH13 impressed me more, and out of a portable rig (IHP-120/Headamp Pico) no less! Whereas the HD800 felt like an open window to the recording, the JH13 felt like a direct injection of music to the brain. I thought for a minute or so and concluded that not only was the JH13 more sonically impressive, it is also more comfortable (proper custom fit + no headphone to trap heat), much more easy to drive, much more transportable, and it is less expensive to boot. At that point, I knew, the JH13 had to be mine. Now time for the 2-3 week wait to have one of the first off the line!

On that note, thanks a bunch to Uncle Wilson of Crossroads Audio for taking many ear impressions, including my own, which will be the basis for fitting our JH13's. And Jerry, we're glad to have you back, even if you're not just down the road in Irvine. Congrats on the most significant product launch of CanJam 2009!

Audeze Planar Headphones
These were a big surprise to me, as their OEM'd headphone shell did not inspire confidence. However, once I started listening, I was quite pleased, by headphones with the lightning-fast response of electrostatics, without the ever-present amp or transformer box. At 20 ohms, they had plenty of power directly from my portable amp, and jumped to life with lightning dynamics. There is certainly a bit of room for improvement, in terms of making the soundstage a bit more continuous, and perhaps adding a touch more body or richness to the tonality. At around $400, they sound better than Stax SR404's (no graininess/etchiness to the treble), and don't require a separate, dedicated amp.

Headamp Pico Slim prototype
The new digitally-controlled analog volume attenuator of the Pico Slim was everything I expected it to be, delivering great sound quality down to the absolute lowest hearble volumes on my uber-efficient Shure SE530. This should be the new standard-bearer for volume control on amplifiers, replacing the muffling, occasionally scratchy or mis-aligned sound of potentiometers, and the unsatisfying coarse adjustments of most stepped attenuators. Time to put this in your home amps!

Neko Audio D100
Listening to this DAC with the GSX and L3000, it was rather clear that it is very much top class in its' price range. The high end was smooth, natural, and detailed in a way that your average sub-$3k DAC just can't match. The overall presentation was very balanced and relatively neutral, with great imaging. On sound quality alone, it is at the head of the class for $1300. Adding features like a USB input (direct to I2S) would really push it above and beyond.

Grado HF2
This is probably the best headphone John Grado has ever put out. I personally find the PS1 and PS1000 simply have too much bass. The GS1000 is too bright. The RS1 sounds great with some albums, but less than pleasing with others. The HF2 excels by providing that fun Grado sound, without any of the brightness/harshness/over-bassiness of the other models.

The HF2 is certainly a warm headphone, no doubt, but I didn't feel that warmth getting between me and the music. While a more neutral headphone would expose the greater differences in recordings, the HF2 just makes it all very listenable. Certainly one's liking of the Grado sound is conditional on taste, but the HF2 makes it easier to enjoy the Grado flavor thane ever before.

Lavry DA11
Without a DA10 side-by-side to compare, and not having owned one in over a year, it is hard to say exactly whether the DA11 made any significant changes to the basic sound. The spatial imaging processing is very cool, though, as it can significantly expand a headphones' soundstage given the right music (particularly with eletronica and orchestral music), with no significant degradation in detail or tonal quality. Dan Lavry also showed me that it can compress the soundstage of older records mastered such that instruments had only a presence in the right or left speaker alone. By removing that hard-right/hard-left channel separation, old recordings became much more listenable.

HifiMan HM-801
I listened to the DAC section of this unit, and it is quite impressive sounding, in addition to being a portable DAP. The sound quality has all the realism and detail of your average $800-$1200 home DAC, with a very nice, ever-so-slightly warm tone. Once the final details of production are worked out, this will, without a doubt, be the smallest complete high-end audio system around.

Features like the digital inputs, USB DAC capability, swappable battery, microSD card slot, and mass storage support make it a real digital audio hub. The swappable amp module is just icing on the cake, and makes this extremely unique product even more so. I've had a glimpse of the future of digital audio, and it is the HM-801.

Sennheiser HD800
Without a doubt, the HD800 was the most hyped and publicized product debut of CanJam 2009, and with good reason, as they are excellent headphones, perhaps some of the best ever made. However, I think the pre-show hype had grown a bit out of control.

The HD800 is not as fast or detailed as the Qualia 010, nor most of the better electrostatic and/or orthodynamic headphones. Their soundstage is not larger than that of the K1000. The HD800 does most remind me of the HE60, albeit a slightly slower HE60, with more bass. What the HD800 is, is a very close to neutral, very detailed, and very natural sounding headphone, given a good system behind it. It will likely not wow you in any one regard, but it will give you a very open and cleanly polished window on your system, and the recording you've chosen.

Where the HD800 succeeds is that while it may not be the absolute best in any given category of headphone performance, it does extremely well in just about all of them. It is a major step beyond the HD580/600/650 design, and one that can justify its' price. It performs much better than any sub-$500 headphone I know of, and definitely hangs with many at and above its' price range.

The HD800 did seem very sensitive to both the source and amp behind it. I only really felt that the HD800 was showing what it could do, when connected to 909's Reimyo CDP/Eddie Current HD2 rig. The other rigs I tried the HD800 in were lacking either in the source, amplification, or synergy department, and left me rather nonplussed. Of course, mileage will vary with different people, but make no mistakes, and please try the HD800 on different equipment if you are not initially impressed with it. You would be doing yourself, and the headphones a disservice otherwise.
post #343 of 636
Originally Posted by LFF View Post
Love this small pic of me from the above photo SiBurning!

Reminds me of my original avatar.

Sorry you were cut out.

I took about 60 pictures of that first day's raffle. Forget who it was taking pictures in the front row, but we met later, and he said he was wondering what idiot was standing on the side with a cheap camera and a kit lens who thought he'd get even one picture to come out.

This was all that was salvageable.
post #344 of 636
Overwhelming props and thanks to all the organizers, volunteers, and vendors for this awesome event!

What an amazing turnout by everyone and a massive array of equipment brought forth by the community.

Finally, HUGE thanks to Audio-Gd, as I was one of the lucky winners of a Compass!

Edit: Hey that's me!
post #345 of 636

California burgers, brew, and bouncers

Dinner after the meet on Sunday. Lots of beer and sweet potato fries with our burgers

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