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Stockhom, Sweden (Sept. 11-12, 2009) Impressions  

post #1 of 71
Thread Starter 
First Swedish Head-Fi Meet

September 11-12, 2009, Stockholm




I participated in the meet the entire Friday and I hope that the continuation on Saturday is equally great (meet is still going on). This was my first Head-Fi meet and it was a great success, no masses of participants but very engaged and knowledgeable people and very good equipment.

I also want to thank Audio Concept for excellent support - not only for access to the local but they also contributed with equipment as power conditioning, some amps and headphones and, most essentially a number of high-end CD-players from Boulder, MBL, Audio Research, Gamut etc. That´s the worst thing to carry to a meet and we are grateful for the help.

Some short impressions - as always take it with at least one grain of salt depending on meet conditions. Listening conditions were good but listening is by necessity rather short, often unsystematic and it is more of comparing systems than components.

The greatest attraction was the Sennheiser Orpheus system fed by an enormous sized Boulder CDP (model 1021 if I remember right). I have heard Orpheus a long time ago at an exhibition and thought that my very favorable memory partly depended on that it was a one system demo and there was no competition. My impression was very similar now although I have listened to many other systems. Very large soundstage and 3D sound with a warmth and smoothness that catches you. No surprise, it is outstanding on classical music but I was surprised by how good it was on rock and pop.

I got an opportunity to listen to K1000 with an Audion 300B amplifier and liked it a lot - much better than the Antique Sound Lab amp with a decicated K1000 output (don't remember model nr.).

One of the surprises was that Donald Norths new amplifier was available at the meet. Also very good - it was driven with a 110 - 230V transformer and this probably subtracted somewhat from sound quality. I tested a similar transformer (looked the same) on Stax 717 and sound quality increased clearly when I set it for 230V operation. I liked the DNA much more than a Trafomatic amp that I connected to the same system (but I think they are in different price classes).

I compared two HD800s - with stock and APS cable - on the DNA amp and think it sounded better with APS cable - a little more color and warmth of tone and better bass. It might help with HD800 tendency of too much "monitor sound". With reservation for unknown burn-in status of the headphones.

I liked the Naim Headline - it is a bit behind the better amplifiers but with an honest sound and maybe better with the Naim power supplies. I did not like the Rudistor RPX-33 - the sound was warm and relaxed but the treble was suppressed in a way that made instruments soundunnatural.

There was also a Lawton DA2000 headphone that sounded quite good - warm and listenable without being blurred - but I preferred HD800 for more transparency andbetter bass.

Finally I had an opportunity to compare my new Lavry DA11 with a Weiss Minerva. The DACs got a digital signal from the RCA output of a MBL CD-player and further in the chain was a Stax 717/O2 mk. 1 system. I wish I had more time for this before going home because they were close. I did some comparisons and initially I thought Minerva was slightly better but then doubted it and thought it was more a matter of somewhat different sound signatures. Of course, it is possible that Minerva on the Firewire input is better than Lavry on USB, but that was not possible to compare in this setting. Anyway, I think that DA11 competed well with a DAC that costs more than the double.

To conclude - a great meeting and I hope there will be more. Thanks to the organizers and the sponsor.

post #2 of 71
I was supposed to be there yesterday but had an operation so couldn't come :'(
post #3 of 71
I'll post my impressions later but I just wanted to thank everyone who came along, especially those who came from far afield, and those who brought gear.

Most of all I would like to echo Anders' sentiments and thank Audio Concept who made the whole thing possible. I cannot begin to describe how much easier their backing made realizing this pipe-dream! Not only did they contribute the venue, tables, power, absolutely top-flight sources and some very interesting headphone equipment but I would also like to acknowledge all the invaluable assistance that Robert, Gunnar, Conny and Likki provided over the last two days. THANK YOU GUYS!

I can promise a few interesting photos and look forward to reading everyone's impressions!
post #4 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by struts View Post
I can promise a few interesting photos and look forward to reading everyone's impressions!
Looking forward to it!

Do you know if the JH13 universals were Audio Concept's, and may be availbale for demo in the shop?
post #5 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deadmeat View Post
I was supposed to be there yesterday but had an operation so couldn't come :'(
Hope everything went well during your surgery and you get well soon!

How about some pictures of the meet!
post #6 of 71
Hi, hope you had a great meet! Thanks for the impressions so far.

Keep'em coming! Yeah, and photos too! Looking forward to it.
post #7 of 71
Thanks guys for a really nice meeting!
With a special thanks to struts and Robert (Audio Concept) for making this possible. Thanks!

All these great rigs in one place. HE90, HE60, O2, K1000, HD800, JH-13 Pro, RS1, HF2, ... to name a few of the 'phones. Not to mention the amplifiers and sources. Nice!
I auditioned the HE90 and HD800 for the first time. Really enjoyed the HE90, but the HD800 was not really to my taste. My O2 driven by $60,000 worth of Boulder gear (1021 Disc Player and 865 integrated) was just stunning, and I have never heard it perform on this level before. It is also safe to say that 300B tubes and K1000 is a nice match...

No pictures from me either. I snapped a few, but forgot to bring an USB cable with me so they are stuck in the camera for now. Sorry!


Edit:
Impressions will follow. But they will have to wait until I have made my way back home to Norway tomorrow...
post #8 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by spahn_ranch View Post
Do you know if the JH13 universals were Audio Concept's, and may be availbale for demo in the shop?
Yes, yes.

I didn't listen to them myself as I have a pair of UE10 Pros and didn't want to be tempted but they were one of the most talked-about pieces of the meet among those that did. The general view seemed to be "don't audition them if you can't afford them"!

post #9 of 71
Pictures ? .... I can arrange that



I will send the rest of the pictures to Struts so he can write nice comments to them as well
I'm afraid my english or knowledge about the equipment isn't good enough
post #10 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by struts View Post
Yes, yes.
I like the sound of that

Quote:
Originally Posted by struts View Post
The general view seemed to be "don't audition them if you can't afford them"!
That's what they say about geetars too. I think the most expensive I played was in the 40k SEK range. How much was that JH13 thing again
post #11 of 71
Look forward to more impressions and pics. That's some serious gear at the meet.
post #12 of 71
I had a really great time meeting all of you and listening to all the amazing gear I will post some impression later when I get the time. I think the best headphone related moment was playing "Opeth - Hessian peel" through (unfortunately) the Sennheiser Orpheus
post #13 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by P-pan View Post
Pictures ? .... I can arrange that
Thought that 'cover picture' was really stange at first glance but I have just figured out what it is, now I see! All I can say is that P-pan has a wicked sense of humour Now I'm really looking forward to the pictures of the gear.

Wonder if anybody else can figure it out...
post #14 of 71
It was truely an amazing meet with an great amount of gear just coming from a few guys alone.
Having the meet at audioconcept was truely a great idee and you cant thank them enough for their friendly approach.

I'll make a bigger write up of the meet later on when I find the time, but these 2 days was great fun and had me smiling all the way.
post #15 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by struts View Post
Wonder if anybody else can figure it out...
Something related to your glasses... I saw him snap it though, so I am biased.

I am safely back home. The flight went smooth, and even the trip through the Tax free store. he he
Had a really nice first trip to Stockholm, and will definitely go back some day.
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Head-Fi.org › Forums › Meets, Get-Togethers, Factory Tours › Head-Fi Meet Impressions, Trade Show Reports, Factory Tours › Stockhom, Sweden (Sept. 11-12, 2009) Impressions