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SPL Phonitor Roll Call & Appreciation Thread - Page 3

post #31 of 679
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by argentum View Post
Good to hear that. What about your K701 and GS1000? My current amp has actually pretty good synergy with Senns too, but with K501 it sounds OK-ish , but nothing spectacular. I want to try decent solid state amp and it should spec wise have the power output that my AKG needs.
The Phonitor with the K701 and GS1K sounds great, too, but the lineup has to be right. In the configuration described above, both cans are excellent. However, when I compare them to the HD800, I find the major difference is in the bass. If I didn't compare it to the HD800, I wouldn't know anything was wrong.

I use Brian Bromberg's "Cantaloupe Island" (Downright Upright, Artistry Music, 2.20.07) to test sub bass and bass, roughly 40-250 Hz, and with the HD800 I can clearly hear the bass strings vibrating. With the GS1K and K701, I hear the bass sounds but not the actual string vibes.

Also, the GS1K colors the bass, and the initial impression is that it may be better than the 800 in this range. But on closer listening, it's clear that it's coloration.
post #32 of 679
YouTube - Musikmesse 2009: André Inderfurth über den SPL Phonitor und SPL Auditor (http://www.96kHz.de)

Shame its in German, but the HD quality makes up for it
post #33 of 679
DA10 got here today. Just waiting on the Auditor now!

And yeah, I read those specs. I know that the circuits are shared between the auditor and the phonitor.
post #34 of 679
We actually have a mini meet at my place few weeks ago, day after I got my HD800. A nice review which was posted in other forum from a fellow friend, Kchew . It will give you an ideal on this amp.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kchew
Many thanks Cal, for letting me try them all today. ;D All were driven by an SPL Phonitor with Cambridge Audio Azur 740c as the source.

First one I tried: the Ultrasone Edition 8.

It was a bit fiddly, I had to remove my glasses as the cups were small. I also didn't get a very good seal on the right cup, so I could only get enough bass when I turned to face right. Very fast, bass was not as powerful as the Edition 9, which is better for me. Not exactly my cup of tea though, especially since it doesn't like my head shape. But I did prefer it over the Edition 9.

Next up, Sennheiser HD800.

Woah, comfy! Probably the most comfortable I've tried yet. It really envelopes your ears with no excess pressure anywhere. Detractors call the HD800 bland, soulless, unengaging; I call it the reverse. Maybe it's the Phonitor, maybe it's all the insane tweaks applied by Cal, maybe it's the sound signature I was looking for all along, but I instantly connected with this beautiful German. Taut and accurate bass, sweet engaging mids, extended treble and expansive soundstage, my AD2000 was left weeping in one corner except for one detail (I'll cover that later). No specific area calls attention to itself, it somehow combines neutrality with a natural sense of musicality. It sounds REAL.

After that, the Grado PS-1000 steps right up.

Rock on! Bass hits hard and hits fast without tainting the midrange. Don't headbang too hard though, it is a heavy beast and might slip off your head. The bass combined with the natural midrange and sparkly treble make it the best among the wallet-busting trinity for rock, metal, anything high in energy really. Not as natural as the HD800, but it makes you want to groove along to the beat.Those looking for emotion, musicality and enjoyment over neutrality must try this hunk of a headphone.

Next was to try the Phonitor with some other cans...

Like the rare Grado RS-1 Vintage S.

Now I know why people turn to the RS-1 for rock. Super upfront and lush mids and solid bass make for an irresistable headbobbing experience. Someone mentioned that the AD2000 was as if the singer was right in front of you, for the RS-1 Vintage S it was like she's on your lap whispering sweet things in your ear. I just couldn't believe how much more forward a headphone could be in the midrange. Definitely a keeper.

What about my Audio Technica AD2000?

Left crying in one corner after trying out the Crème de Crème. However, the Phonitor brought out the best in the midrange, sweeter and more forward than my Stello HP100. I still prefer it for female vocals, even over an RS-1 or HD800. The neutral Phonitor may not be the best match for the AD2000 considering the Audio Technica's light bass.

But what about the 30 year old AKG K240 Sextett?

Monitoring amp + vintage monitoring headphone strut their stuff with aplomb. Tight, impactful bass combined with lush mids and natural treble make it a very musical jack-of-all-trades if you don't mind the small soundstage. Like the RS-1 Vintage S, someones Old is Gold. The Phonitor did not stumble when confronted with this 600 ohm granddaddy, but in the words of someone else who tried the pairing with the volume knob at 10 o'clock: "wow, so soft!" He had to cranked it up to 1 o'clock.

Once again, many thanks Cal. I told myself my next major upgrade would be in two years time, but this visit may just hasten the upgrade process...
post #35 of 679
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gundogan View Post
Shame its [YOUTUBE video] in German, but the HD quality makes up for it
Thanks, Gundogan. Is the speaker saying nice things about the Phonitor/Auditor? Or is he just introducing it? German is so close to English that I feel as though I can almost understand what he's saying.

Quote:
Originally Posted by EugeneK View Post
DA10 got here today. Just waiting on the Auditor now!

And yeah, I read those specs. I know that the circuits are shared between the auditor and the phonitor.
The DA10 is a beauty! I can see you've planned your purchase well. For the price of a Phonitor, you've got a first-rate DAC and the Auditor! Smart move.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ical View Post
We actually have a mini meet at my place few weeks ago, day after I got my HD800. A nice review which was posted in other forum from a fellow friend, Kchew . It will give you an ideal on this amp.
Please thank your friend Kchew for the review. It's excellent! He seems to be confirming a lot of what we've been saying and thinking re the HD800 and the PS1000: One's more analytical, and the other, more musical -- but they both have enough of each that they're standouts.

I've got the now infamous HF-2 on order and can't wait to try it out with the Phonitor. I'm not expecting PS1K performance, but I'm hoping it'll be better than the GS1K.

Thanks, Ical, for sharing the review. An eye-opener!
post #36 of 679
Quote:
Originally Posted by feifan View Post
Thanks, Gundogan. Is the speaker saying nice things about the Phonitor/Auditor? Or is he just introducing it? German is so close to English that I feel as though I can almost understand what he's saying.
Think it mainly talks about what the amps (well, the phonitor for the most part ofc) can do and how it helps with monitoring using headphones vs. reallife speaker experience.

The phonitor looks like the next step in headpphone amplification indeed. Instead just being an excellent amp, it introduces all this cool stuff on it to enchance the headphone experience to the next level.

And with a price of under 1500 euro (~2100$), it doesnt seem to be a bad deal. And its easy to get/cheaper in the EU, while most other highend amps are all outside (which means hefty shipping cost + customs).

And the auditor is 'only' ~600 euro, which seems nice too for just the amp part of the phonitor.

Edit: http://www.soundperformancelab.com/index.php?id=430&L=1 whats this
post #37 of 679
Quote:
Originally Posted by feifan View Post
Re having to give up speakers -- is this why you went for the Phonitor? To get some of SQ control that speakers gave you?
haha...yap, I like it neutral and transparent sound and the SQ control. Now saving up for a new can
post #38 of 679
it's good to know it sound good with k701 but how does it sound with other akgs such as k501 or even older akgs? i don't expect this to sound good with k340 though
post #39 of 679
Quote:
Originally Posted by feifan View Post
The DA10 is a beauty! I can see you've planned your purchase well. For the price of a Phonitor, you've got a first-rate DAC and the Auditor! Smart move.
Actually, I spent less on my setup than a phonitor, the DA10 is used so I got a pretty hefty discount, and it's only 4 months old.

I don't know why they are chaging so much for the phonitor (or so little for the auditor)..... I mean, it's just crossfeed, which you can do for free with a winamp plugin. /shrug.

Of course the phonitor is way prettier than the auditor. The auditor looks like a box with a huge knob attached to it, the little needle displays and knobs on the phonitor add so much character to it.
post #40 of 679
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gundogan View Post
Think it mainly talks about what the amps (well, the phonitor for the most part ofc) can do and how it helps with monitoring using headphones vs. reallife speaker experience.

The phonitor looks like the next step in headpphone amplification indeed. Instead just being an excellent amp, it introduces all this cool stuff on it to enchance the headphone experience to the next level.

And with a price of under 1500 euro (~2100$), it doesnt seem to be a bad deal. And its easy to get/cheaper in the EU, while most other highend amps are all outside (which means hefty shipping cost + customs).

And the auditor is 'only' ~600 euro, which seems nice too for just the amp part of the phonitor.
Gundogan, thanks for the translation and the info on EU pricing. Head-fiers in Europe are fortunate that so many of the top 'phone and equipment companies are over there. The Auditor price sounds really good!

Quote:
Originally Posted by kidult View Post
haha...yap, I like it neutral and transparent sound and the SQ control. Now saving up for a new can
I'm like you -- I prefer neutral/transparent. Which cans are you looking at? Seems like a lot of really good ones have popped up recently. The cost is a bummer, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fhuang View Post
it's good to know it sound good with k701 but how does it sound with other akgs such as k501 or even older akgs? i don't expect this to sound good with k340 though
Hi, fhuang. I'm not sure about the other AKGs. From what I'm experiencing, the Phonitor can probably sound good with a lot of different cans, but you have to futz with different equipment lineups and hard/soft adjustments. The best test, though, is to actually audition it with your cans or get a review based on your setup. But don't rule out the K340 until you've tested it with the Phonitor or Auditor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by EugeneK View Post
Actually, I spent less on my setup than a phonitor, the DA10 is used so I got a pretty hefty discount, and it's only 4 months old.

I don't know why they are chaging so much for the phonitor (or so little for the auditor)..... I mean, it's just crossfeed, which you can do for free with a winamp plugin. /shrug.

Of course the phonitor is way prettier than the auditor. The auditor looks like a box with a huge knob attached to it, the little needle displays and knobs on the phonitor add so much character to it.
You lucked out on the DA10! Almost new at a discount can't be beat. You won't see it come up often -- if ever.

Re the Phonitor's angling features: I think it might be more than crossfeed. But this feature is only important if your listening is enhanced by it or if you're re-engineering recordings and trying to achieve a different sound.

I like the looks of the Phonitor, but I also like the simplicity of the Auditor. They both appeal in different ways.
post #41 of 679
Quote:
Originally Posted by feifan View Post
I'm like you -- I prefer neutral/transparent. Which cans are you looking at? Seems like a lot of really good ones have popped up recently. The cost is a bummer, though.
I heard PS1000, HD800 & ED8 on Phonitor. to my decent ears, i much prefer 1) HD800 2) PS1000 3) ED8 pairing. while HF-2 is coming anytime next 2 months (I hope). i'll decide after received the HF-2. either PS1000 or HD800.
or maybe none haha...
post #42 of 679
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kidult View Post
I heard PS1000, HD800 & ED8 on Phonitor. to my decent ears, i much prefer 1) HD800 2) PS1000 3) ED8 pairing. while HF-2 is coming anytime next 2 months (I hope). i'll decide after received the HF-2. either PS1000 or HD800.
or maybe none haha...
Right now, I'm satisfied with the HD800 and don't feel an urge to get anything else. But I am still curious about the PS1000.

Looks like we have similar tastes. I ordered the HF-2, too. I thought it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own a piece of 'phone history. My only Grado experience is the GS1K, and I've been reading so much about the other Grados that I jumped at this opportunity. The price was right, and the reviews seem very positive. My gut feeling is that I'm really going to like it.

I'm finding that that both the HD800 and Phonitor are actually very easy -- easy to match-up with other equipment. Of course, when the lineup is wrong, the sound is crappy, but you almost have to work at getting it wrong. So I expect the HF-2 to sound great with the Phonitor.

Mine is due in late August, and I've got my fingers crossed that the wait won't be longer than that.

Re purchasing either, both, or none -- you're actually better off if you can hold off for a while. The longer you can wait, the better. The reason is that other 'phones are probably going to appear and, in all likelihood, they'll be better if not different. If you still want the HD800 or the PS1000, the prices by then should be a lot lower. Keep your options open, if you can.
post #43 of 679
Try PS1000 only when you're ready or you'll have many sleepless night.
post #44 of 679
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ical View Post
Try PS1000 only when you're ready or you'll have many sleepless night.
Oh, you're a , Ical. Tempting. Tempting.
post #45 of 679
OH wow, the Auditor drives my AKG K340 really well too - and I was going to build a speaker amp for it.

and the K340 sounds better than the HD800 for classical - violins are just magical.
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