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Seattle / Woodinville (July 17th) meet impression. - Page 2  

post #16 of 70

The Red hook meet was one of the best meets in a long time. The MOT's that came this time had some amazing gear. Doc B is a Rock Star.  Had some of his fans come check out the meet. Audiowize had some cool swag to give away at the meet. Joe from Kosmic.us is a wealth of information on audio gear. Brought that summit-fi gear down to earth. Will get to there gear in a bit.

It was great to see old friends and new ones. We were packed for a bit. The gear that was just brought by head-fiers was phenomenal. I witness four people side by side listening to T-1's, there was 2 sets of Audeze LCD-2's, 2 loaner amps from TTVJ. The Luxman P-1 and the Apex peak w/ Volcano. besides iamoneagain's AT DHA-3000 amp and L-3000 set up and Kingstyles sic total off the grid laptop set up. The first thing I did is grab the LCD-2's and listened to them on Kingstyles rig. To me the Audeze were everything everybody says there are . Great headphones,  I really like them. There was a line forever trying to listen to Doc B's gear. Well that and the Apex next to it. Got to listen to the Wiess DAC 202 with Kosmic's custom server. It was like I was a kid in a candy store. Finally I got to Doc B's and audiowize's table. Doc B had this amazing set up with a Reel to Reel feeding his amps with some great blues. Got to listen to the P-1. Very nice SS amp. Alphaphoenix saved the day with the water and snacks. That water was gone by the end.

The aftermeet was a whole different animal. Joe from Kosmic joined us joined us at Red Hook. It was a little crazy trying to get a table and that place was huge. We did finally get a couple tables outside and after many pitchers of beer and nachos the craziness was soon forgotten. Just a few random thought until I see some more pictures.
 


Edited by BIG POPPA - 7/18/10 at 8:25pm
post #17 of 70

 

Quote:
Doc B is a Rock Star.

LOL, that's the first time I was ever called that! The meet was great fun, the folks in attendance were all very friendly and PB and I hope to attend more in the future. Sorry we couldn't make it to the brewery, we had a design meeting to attend after the meet. Thanks to everyone who brought all the great headphones and generously allowed me to listen to them. And a big thank you to you, Gil, for putting the meet together. Sorry that it was difficult for everyone who wanted to to get a listen even with three headphone rigs running off the tape machine. I will try to figure out a way to squeeze in a couple more rigs next time.

 

I can't say that the line to hear the tapes is something that I will complain about...but I do want to make a standing invitation to HeadFier's who may not have gotten a chance to listen or who would like to hear more. Some great news for us is the day before the meet I signed a lease for our dream office/lab/listening space on Bainbridge Is. We hope to be in by late August and have an open house soon thereafter. Not only will we happily have folks over by appointment to audition gear, the space has been chosen with events like classes and meetings in mind and we hope to be able to sponsor a Head-Fi meet there at some point.

 

Oh BTW - to the gent who bought the kit yesterday - thank you very much, and please give us a call. Eileen reminded me that we have a couple of back ordered resistors arriving by UPS tomorrow that we want to get to you ASAP.

post #18 of 70

Gathering my thoughts for review......

post #19 of 70

AAARGHHHHH 

I wasn't paying attention! Looks like this was an amazing meet! I've wanted to hear a K1000 for ages.

Oblivious to the fact that this was going on, I was wandering around Hi-Fi row on Roosevelt shopping for amplifiers during the meet. At least I can find a little comfort in my new toy...

post #20 of 70

It would be nice to hear some thoughts of the 1st timers and the newer Head-fiers?

post #21 of 70

The MOT rigs were a blast to listen to overall.  Loved listening to the Weiss DAC and also the CD/DAC and amp rig from Bottlehead was stellar.  The Protector was really impressive, especially for the form factor.  I mean, the thing is smaller than a lot of the AC adapters I have and it powered the LCD-2's pretty well.  The Schiit Asgard was also pretty impressive for the price point, so I can definitely see how it could be recommended on a budget, though folks were not exaggerating when they talked about the heat that sucker gives off.  Pretty much everything down to the volume pot could have probably kept my coffee hot.  OK...total exaggeration, but it does run really warm, but with pretty good sound.  The breadth of stuff available to listen to was great and I definitely had a blast.

 

Thanks to Big Poppa for organizing!  Meet was great...good gear, good people, good times.  After-meet was great too (after we got seats)...good beer, good people, good times. 

post #22 of 70

This meet was my first time, so my head-fi virgin status has been officially popped so to speak.  I was amazed at the breadth of rigs and the room just oozed with hi-fi passion and comaredy.  The opportunity to audtion for the first time the HD800, T1, Ultrasone Edition 8,  LCD-2, K1000, ESW10, and the Markl Denons was mind and ear blowing.   Below are my honest impression results and reconciles with the discussion threads about them:

  • The LCD-2 I found very neutral and sounded sublime with the Beta 22 and SPL PHONITOR. They certainly are a few leagues above my HE-5 and basically corrects all the flaws inherit with the HE-5.  The LCD-2 have a slight clamp feel, but I think this a positive thing, as it's overall comfort is unsurpassed.  If I had a grand to spend, would I buy the LCD-2?  Maybe, but not until a full Markl D7000 (LA7000) is in my possession.  I guess I'm not much of an Ortho guy as I've have recently sold my HE-5. 
  • My favorite cans at the meet was the full Markl D7000 supplied by KingStyles.  I've never experienced bass as tight, clean, and impacting for a closed can, or any other type of can for that matter.  I don't know who brought the Meridian(?) rig, but damn, this paired with the D7000 blew me away when listening to Alice in Chains live.  The last time I felt this way was when I was at Magnolia Hi-Fi a few years ago and Sumiko auditioned the Sonus Faber (forgot the model) loudspeakers carrying the tones of Leonard Cohen.  Of course they had the speaker setup perfectly, and that "sweet spot" that magically takes you from where you are to the moment and location recorded on vinyl.  These two moments were nearly identicle.  So, if I had about two grand to blow, these were be my purchase.
  • Behind the LA7000 is the HD800.  To my ears, they are the most speaker like and the soundstage was absolutely huge.  I had the pleasure of listening to them on the Doc's tape rig coming out the heavily modded S.E.X and damn!  I can now hear why analog has such a strong hold within the audiophile community.   If I had the funds to only have two cans in my possession, it would be these and the LA7000.  I totally agree with KingStyles that the two perfectly compliments each other.  The strange thing I found was the T1 sounded very similar to the HD800, but for my ears, it sounded more natural.  Since I'm a cheap-ass, if I only had a grand to spend on headphones present at the meet, it would be without question the T1 and I would have picked up Poetik's T1 forsale.
  • Over in the corner was the Head-Direct Jade electrostatic.   I don't specifically recall the rig setup, but Diana Krall never sounded so sweet and intoxicating.  I wonder how they compare to the O2, which had been for a while the pinnicle of my headphone possession (money is no object).  I was hoping the O2 would be present, but maybe next time.  However, having heard the pair in the last bullet point, this could be a moot point.
  • Whomever brought the Edition 8 (I hope I'm right, and it's not the 9) thank you as I requested them in the meeting thread.  These are indeed very fun sounding cans.  But to my ears, it was below the ideal two. Still, for me it carries the crown as the most beautifully crafted cans I've ever layed my hands on, and truly embodies the industrial statement of art and hi-fi purpose.  If the HD800 asthetics is a Ferrari, the Editions are Bentleys, and the T1 would be Skyline as from afar it looks very similar and somewhat plain to other Beyers, but like the Skyline the inards speaks and commands a diffierent story. 
  • I have little experience and exposure to high end DACs, but the Wiess DAC 202 with Kosmic's custom server sounded pretty sweet, like being in a candy store without fear of cavities. 
  • What else, oh yes, the K1000 was a real treat to listen too.   Playing with the angles of the ear speakers yielded a suprisenly different soundstage for me.  But, the HD800 was next it, and I preferred it over the K1000, plus I don't think I could ever wear the K1000 for longer than 30 minutes as the temple pads were, well, drilling in my temples.  Yest another nice treat was the third can supplied by the Doc - the HF2.  I'm so glad I was able to audtion them as now, I won't be canceling my order from TTVJ.  Even though the RS2 has a soft spot wit me, I can easily see only owing the HF2 if I was only able to to choose one Grado.  Next time, maybe a PS1 will show up and kill that thought. 

 

I apologize for not giving attention to the other gear at the meet. 

 

 

Here are some constructive feedback for future meets where noobs may be found:

  • An introduction to who's who or even a name tag of the head-fi alias as names were mostly known at the brewery where alcohol was a play, but maybe that's a good thing
  • Somehow, my HE-5 right side got bent during the meet.  I don't know how it got like it was, but I was able to bend it back without consequence.  So, I'll leave at that, but I hope head-fi veterans and noob know about gear respect and accountability should one f**** up somewhere else's gear whether it was an accident or not - enough said.
  • I hope the events never experience an incident of theft, but at times I did question who's who.  Perhaps I'm being a little paranoid and should lighten up a bit, but the gear at the meet has some serious coin behind them and are without question, delicious eye candy.  I'm probably going over the edge and killing some fun factor, but a roster wouldn't be a bad thing.  It's part of my corporate crap that carries over. 

 

All in all, it was great times and I'm so glad I was able to attend.  I'm greatful of the local head-fiers sharing their rigs, answering questions, and supporting the persuit of "that sound". 

 

 

Regards,

 

David


Edited by alphaphoenix - 7/19/10 at 1:59am
post #23 of 70

Sounds like it was a great meet! Really wish I could've been there, would have loved to hear some of the gear being mentioned.

post #24 of 70

Damm, there was a beta 22 and a jade there? Bummer I never made it to that corner of the room.

post #25 of 70

Hi David,

 

Nice recap. Regarding keeping track of equipment, that's why us manufacturers tend not to leave our tables. If I may have been looking past some of you now and then when I was talking to you, it's because I was keeping an eye on a set of phones that were borrowed and being used elsewhere. That said, we've been to one of these events in the Bay Area and one up here now, with no problems. The Bay Area event was in three rooms and the general rule there was "you can borrow my headphones but please don't take them out of this room". If one is a little unsure of letting someone else borrow your cans maybe the best thing is to go with them to the rig they want to try them on.

 

My one suggestion for development of a useful etiquette would be if you put some cans on at someone's table, turn the volume up a bit and nothing happens, talk to the guy sitting at the table and make sure you are adjusting the correct rig. A couple of times folks got headphone cables crossed at our table and the guy on the left just about blew the guy on the right's eardrums out when he just kept cranking the volume on the wrong amp up past stun and almost all the way to kill.

post #26 of 70

 

Quote:

 

  • Somehow, my HE-5 right side got bent during the meet.  I don't know how it got like it was, but I was able to bend it back without consequence.  So, I'll leave at that, but I hope head-fi veterans and noob know about gear respect and accountability should one f**** up somewhere else's gear whether it was an accident or not - enough said.
  • I hope the events never experience an incident of theft, but at times I did question who's who.  Perhaps I'm being a little paranoid and should lighten up a bit, but the gear at the meet has some serious coin behind them and are without question, delicious eye candy.  I'm probably going over the edge and killing some fun factor, but a roster wouldn't be a bad thing.  It's part of my corporate crap that carries ove



 



One thing I did notice about the he5 was that they are very stiff to adjust. If a person was adjusting them while on there head by grabbing the adjustment area with there fingers and there thumb on the casing, it was almost unmovable and would put a lot of strain on the curved piece on yours that bent. I had to take them off, ( at least this was the case with the other pair that was there) and adjust them by grabbing the metal where the adjustment was and the wooden adjuster and it was still pretty stiff. if you know something like this about your cans, you should place a disclaimer or advise in the meet thread or on a sheet of paper at the table. Not blaming the owner here, it was just something I noticed. It to bad that the owner wasnt notified of the damage when it was done. I would hope that if some damage was done to someones equipment that as a community we could reimburse the individual for the damages. Thanks for coming and sharing and hope future visits go without incident and let us know if there is anything we can do to help.

post #27 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingStyles View Post

Damm, there was a beta 22 and a jade there? Bummer I never made it to that corner of the room.



Oh, you missed Markj's B22. It sounded quite amazing as SS amp. Paired well with LCD-2

post #28 of 70

Our meets becoming bigger and bigger. Will have to talk to some Seattle Head-fiers to see if we have to amend some policies we have with caring for equipment. If anything happens please contact me ASAP. We do this fairly often and have most concerns handled. A sign in sheet with a gear log is not a bad idea since the meets are getting a little bigger. Most of the meets prior everybody knew just about everybody by a face and gear. Glad the meets are getting more popular, just have to keep policies in place to keep everything fun and accountable simultaneiously. No biggie.
 

post #29 of 70
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingStyles View Post

Damm, there was a beta 22 and a jade there? Bummer I never made it to that corner of the room.



Was there a B22?  I missed the chance of trying it with the LCD2 ....

post #30 of 70

The Woodinville Meet was my first foray into A/B'ing equipment setups as well as my first head-fi fanatics gathering.  I extend my thanks to all who showed mojo kindness and good cheer...Big Poppa must be grinning from ear to ear (as he was most of the day) for the collusion of great vibes and tunes he had the wherewithal to combine and I thank him for extending a warm welcome...I wish I had a chance to spend more time asking questions of people who obviously knew far more, but everyone was really into getting their jones' worth of cans and rigs.  A longer day, a bigger room, it would have been less hectic...but a quickie is as good as a long-nighter to us, anyhow, and one must make do with the cards dealt.  However, time heals all the bad....

 

I particularly would like to thank Seamaster and Poetik for their comments on my headphone amplifiers and to Replytoken for the chance to auditon the Apex/Volcano combo.  Iamoneagain brought a Zero DAC (am I right?) and I plan to inquire as to which opamp upgrade he used in the Zero.  (I have to admit when he told me how much he bought it for, I kicked myself for spending nearly a grand on a Lavry.  I felt even worse when I realized there is this massive thread on the Zero DAC...so I am going to swallow my pride and inquire if it is still for sale...ha!).

 

But back to the meet impressions.  The Apex combo and the Zero DAC were my favorites for a good reason: they closely matched my listening experience on my Cyber 20.  They carried alot of tone color on acoustic strings and the notes were fat and distinctly forward, which helped me appreciate them better as compared to the higher priced units. The dynamic range was there...Seamaster made some comments on the mid-range ("thin") and the highs being "not smooth"...but I had no idea of what the frame of reference was so that is something I am going to have to put under a microscope...

 

I learned alot. It seems like most of the big bucks rigs and cans are not for me (initial impression, so take it with grain o' sodium).   My theory is that the more expensive rigs are costly because the design goals are more complex: to capture the instrumental soundstage and put it out cleanly through the small transducer of a headphone requires quite a bit more finetuning and design work to get there, both for the amplifer as well as for the cans.  Consequently, there is a tradeoff or sorts between fine cuisine and Applebee's gluttony, if you get my drift.  I could not appreciate the HD800 or the Denons. In comparision thereto, the Tesla and Ultrasone Edition 8/9(?) struck me as more approachable.  I left with the Beyer 990s on a buy list and maybe with the right equipment (Apex?) the Tesla or HD800 might take possession of my gonads.  The ATH Grandioso was the only closed backed wood cans I could cotton to...again probably because I have the ATH-AD2000 and so, was in a familiar neighborhood....

 

To be honest, I got completely flustered by the first few computer based rigs I listened to because one after another, I couldn't hear a fooping thing on them...after a couple tries, I figured its either I couldn't tell from looking at the computer if it was playing or the amps did not have enought current to give me a noise level I could hear.  This was the case with all the Woo WA6s that were hooked up to computer rigs and I completely couldn't get anything out of the Weiss DAC, all $6K of it...perhaps I was just too tired and my hearing acuity wasn't there...yada yada yada....next time I am going to grab the owners and man up a closer try. 

 

I apologize to Kingstyles for not taking a chance on listening to his rig, though he was parked right next to me....the Redwine is on my short list to audition and I am sure I will have a chance in the future to spend more time at his corner of the room.  I am still kicking myself for not trying the Beta22....again, a chance might occassion itself, God willing and the creek don't rise.

 

I also have to agree that some caution was thrown to the wind with some seemingly non-head-fi attendees walking around. (One dude walked in and clearly had a rough night the evening before, gruff as he was and didn't know how to press the "play" button.  At least he wasn't a tweaker, otherwise some stuff woulda been.....).   So much for book cover judgements, I still think some monitoring for theft prevention could take place, like name tags and a gear list so that anyone leaving the room has to be paired to the gear list or owner somehow...

 

All in all, I learned alot...still need a few more meets to solidify my knowledge and then to make more informed equipment evaluations before buying.  At least, Big Poppa saved me alot of money (at least in the short term) because the meet utterly convinced me that trying out gear before buying is the sane path to fiscal irresponsibility...so I look forward to hearing about the next one in this here neck of the woods....can Can-Jam be too far away?

 

Thanks to all and Big Pops.

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