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SR60-Mod - Page 37  

post #541 of 5003

After finishing up a set of mine, I have a newfound apreciation for your work Bill. And yes, there are scorchemarks on most of my rings too, I just put them where they are unseen, I'm tricky like that. Endgrain is a PAIN to stain evenly, as the vertical grained portions and horizontle stained portions take stain at different rates, even after using a wood conditioner. Luckily these were single rings and you can't see half of the grain. I've found that the best way to run the wires is by drilling a hole for them, and then cutting in on the hole so you get an upside down U shape, this allows the drivers to be removed without soldering. I can't report on the sound changes, because I've only listened a little because my pads still turn my ears black. I need to find some retayne color fixative, but I can't come across it anywhere. The other solution is to just order bowls, which I know sound better but I have heard are uncomfortable. I'm also having trouble finding black metal screen, because all the screen I've found is either black nylon, or shiney/grey aluminum.

post #542 of 5003

I just got my woodies today, and I must say that substituting wood for plastic singlehandedly had the greatest increase in SQ over any other tweak I've heard. I'm very impressed. Everything just sounds... right, somehow. I'll be "upgrading" (not a cable believer) my cable as soon as I get all the materials together. It truly sounds fantastic.

 

I'm also building a new amp and DAC in the next couple weeks, but everything sounds so good right now, I can't imagine it sounding better.

post #543 of 5003
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Armaegis View Post

I am beginning to suspect that this thread is really about Bill taking pictures of himself biggrin.gif (also, quick! someone get this man a comb for Christmas!)

 

Wouldn't holding the shells with your fingers affect the sound? Perhaps not as pronounced as mechanically coupling the drivers, but it's still removing vibrations.

 

As for wood treatment, I started thinking about stringed instruments and what their makers use. Apparently I have a lot of reading to do... here's a couple samples off google:

http://www.gussetviolins.com/varnish.htm

http://www.violins.ca/varnish/violin_varnish_recipes.html

http://www.leroydouglasviolins.com/varnish.htm

 

1. You're onto me.  I'm here for the glamour shots.

 

2. You're right.  Holding the shells does affect the sound; it damps it.  Yet, even with two fingers damping them, these wooden shells vibrate like an extension of the drivers.

 

3. Keep reading up on the issues that go into instruments employing wood - whether they're percussion or stringed.  It's a fascinating discussion, one that has gotten me quite interested in the usefulness of employing tonewoods to get better sound.  Next week, I have an appointment to meet with a man who knows about as much about cocobolo as anyone I know.

 

4. I never turn down a breath mint or a comb, though I'm more likely to use the former than the latter.  I have no vanity to serve, just an interest in headphones that puts me to bed at night and wakes me in the morning.


Edited by Bilavideo - 12/24/10 at 3:51pm
post #544 of 5003

Crazy idea. Make a shell just a few millimeters bigger, then attach it to the backplate, effectively "floating" it from the back of the driver.

post #545 of 5003
Quote:
Originally Posted by Armaegis View Post

Crazy idea. Make a shell just a few millimeters bigger, then attach it to the backplate, effectively "floating" it from the back of the driver.


How would you attach it to the headband then? I must say, I don't think touching the shell does anything.

post #546 of 5003

I dunno... attach the arms to the driver housing? Or why not just attach the arms to the shell like normal?

post #547 of 5003
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bilavideo View Post

Originally Posted by Armaegis View Post

I am beginning to suspect that this thread is really about Bill taking pictures of himself biggrin.gif (also, quick! someone get this man a comb for Christmas!)

 

Wouldn't holding the shells with your fingers affect the sound? Perhaps not as pronounced as mechanically coupling the drivers, but it's still removing vibrations.

 

As for wood treatment, I started thinking about stringed instruments and what their makers use. Apparently I have a lot of reading to do... here's a couple samples off google:

http://www.gussetviolins.com/varnish.htm

http://www.violins.ca/varnish/violin_varnish_recipes.html

http://www.leroydouglasviolins.com/varnish.htm

 

1. You're onto me.  I'm here for the glamour shots.

 

2. You're right.  Holding the shells does affect the sound; it damps it.  Yet, even with two fingers damping them, these wooden shells vibrate like an extension of the drivers.

 

3. Keep reading up on the issues that go into instruments employing wood - whether they're percussion or stringed.  It's a fascinating discussion, one that has gotten me quite interested in the usefulness of employing tonewoods to get better sound.  Next week, I have an appointment to meet with a man who knows about as much about cocobolo as anyone I know.

 

4. I never turn down a breath mint or a comb, though I'm more likely to use the former than the latter.  I have no vanity to serve, just an interest in headphones that puts me to bed at night and wakes me in the morning.


 

I've been following this thread closely, as I want to do these mods on a lower level grado if I can find one cheap enough. I couldn't help but chime in when you mentioned the cocobolo though. I'm currently using a pair of heavily modded 325i done by stevenkelby, and he tried a bunch of different wood cups before he decided on, guess what? Cocobolo! I don't know the exact reasons he chose cocobolo (he didn't go into much detail, just told me they sounded better than anything else he tried), but I love his choice. They look great, and they sound even better. Every time I put them on I'm amazed. I'm eager to hear your results too, but I'm sure you'll love this wood.

I know I took the lame way out and bought someone else's pre-modded Grados, but that was before this thread was started and I had no idea it was this easy to modify Grados to your liking (and I say easy with a grain of salt... i.e. I thought you might have to have a lathe to turn some nice cups, but I've clearly been proven wrong!). I will definitely be doing these mods when I can find some cheap Grados and I'm back home with a decent drill.

post #548 of 5003
Thread Starter 

 


Originally Posted by Armaegis View Post

I dunno... attach the arms to the driver housing? Or why not just attach the arms to the shell like normal?


It's not a critical issue.  What I was saying, a few threads back, was that I can see why Grado wanted minimal contact.  These shells are not completely analogous to loudspeaker cabinets.  In the loudspeaker world, it's not a good idea to have the cabinet vibrate.  The cabinet is supposed to be stiff, all around.  The only thing vibrating should be the driver itself.  Cabinet vibrations can interfere with driver performance.  Coming on the heels of the driver, the resonance produced muddies the presentation with colored and distorted echoes - or produces cancellations.  If Grados were meant to behave like loudspeakers, there would be no end to the efforts to stabilize the shells with as much damping as possible.  There are headphones that are designed exactly like that.

 

But with Grados, the attempt to vent back-wave resonance leaves the bass anemic.  You've got amazing clarity but you've also got an LF drop.  There are ways to compensate for this.  One would be to add mass to the driver, tamping down the HF and creating a basis for increased LF.  You could throw up a filter.  Either of these would require greater amping.  The further one goes in this direction, the more tied-down one becomes.  Whether he wants to admit it or not, Grado has co-opted the shells as extensions of the drivers.  That's why a tonewood, with greater resonance qualities, helps amplify the bass.  To be sure, this is not as pure as having a single driver large enough and deep enough in timbre that one hears only what emanates from it (Hence my interest in creating such a driver).  On the other hand, as any HTS builder will tell you, there's a much greater sensitivity to distortion as one reaches higher in the audible spectrum.  Until it reaches a certain threshold, bass distortion is not a problem.  Given its slower speed, we have a harder time telling the difference between the original signal and its ghost.  As bass waves are less directional, we are less apt to even sense where they're coming from, which is how subwoofers can be placed in room corners and successfully pull off the illusion that the sound is coming from "all over."

 

Vibrating shells allow a selective degree of back-wave resonance to come back into the presentation.  Like "bass reflex" systems (which are often used with general-purpose and wide-range drivers), the idea is to let that aspect of the presentation get what somebody here called a "megaphone" effect.  The point I am making is that, if we're basically making the best of the "vibrating shell" game, we might as well use shells that are the most euphonic.  Grado uses mahogany, which is an excellent tonewood.  There are other tonewoods out there that are also worth pursuing, though some of them are more expensive than mahogany.  Brazilian rosewood was the king of the hill, but it has been put out of international trade and what's left of it is prohibitively expensive.  This leaves a number of alternatives, including East Indian rosewood, Honduran mahogany, Cuban mahogany,  Maple, Koa, Alder, etc.


Edited by Bilavideo - 12/24/10 at 8:35pm
post #549 of 5003
Thread Starter 

 

Originally Posted by pbandstefanwich View Post

I've been following this thread closely, as I want to do these mods on a lower level grado if I can find one cheap enough. I couldn't help but chime in when you mentioned the cocobolo though. I'm currently using a pair of heavily modded 325i done by stevenkelby, and he tried a bunch of different wood cups before he decided on, guess what? Cocobolo! I don't know the exact reasons he chose cocobolo (he didn't go into much detail, just told me they sounded better than anything else he tried), but I love his choice. They look great, and they sound even better. Every time I put them on I'm amazed. I'm eager to hear your results too, but I'm sure you'll love this wood.

I know I took the lame way out and bought someone else's pre-modded Grados, but that was before this thread was started and I had no idea it was this easy to modify Grados to your liking (and I say easy with a grain of salt... i.e. I thought you might have to have a lathe to turn some nice cups, but I've clearly been proven wrong!). I will definitely be doing these mods when I can find some cheap Grados and I'm back home with a decent drill.


Man, I want to thank you for this posting.  You made my day!  I'm meeting with a guy on Monday.  I'll have to travel an hour to get there but I'm stoked!  


Edited by Bilavideo - 12/24/10 at 8:43pm
post #550 of 5003

Actually, I was thinking that by attaching the shell to the backplate, the shell is effectively acting as a diaphragm (er... sort of) instead of a resonance chamber. I think this would improve resolution going forward since the plate is now coupled and will vibrate less, and those backwaves are now transferred directly to the shell rather than reflecting. The floating aspect may be unnecessary. A couple small contact points from the shell to the driver housing may be necessary for support.

post #551 of 5003
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bilavideo View Post

 

Originally Posted by pbandstefanwich View Post

I've been following this thread closely, as I want to do these mods on a lower level grado if I can find one cheap enough. I couldn't help but chime in when you mentioned the cocobolo though. I'm currently using a pair of heavily modded 325i done by stevenkelby, and he tried a bunch of different wood cups before he decided on, guess what? Cocobolo! I don't know the exact reasons he chose cocobolo (he didn't go into much detail, just told me they sounded better than anything else he tried), but I love his choice. They look great, and they sound even better. Every time I put them on I'm amazed. I'm eager to hear your results too, but I'm sure you'll love this wood.

I know I took the lame way out and bought someone else's pre-modded Grados, but that was before this thread was started and I had no idea it was this easy to modify Grados to your liking (and I say easy with a grain of salt... i.e. I thought you might have to have a lathe to turn some nice cups, but I've clearly been proven wrong!). I will definitely be doing these mods when I can find some cheap Grados and I'm back home with a decent drill.


Man, I want to thank you for this posting.  You made my day!  I'm meeting with a guy on Monday.  I'll have to travel an hour to get there but I'm stoked!  


No, thank you for this thread! It's a great resource and I've learned a whole lot. And don't let the long journey deter you. I'm almost positive it will be worth it for you. I'm rocking out with the cocobolo right now and the SQ is amazing. It just sounds so... real. No sibilance or anything, with amazing bass extension. I'm always left in awe at the bass accuracy and extension when listening to a nice double bass recording or some electronic music (I have a secret soft spot for Gorrilaz on occasion). I tend to attribute the bass on these cans to the wood, but it's probably a combination of that along with all the other mods. In any case, I love the way these sound, and I like them more than the RS1i that I tried at the headphone shop the other day. I eagerly await your impressions of the cocobolo, as you've had detailed listening sessions with a bunch of other types of wood, which I haven't had the luxury of experiencing!

 

On a side note, did anything ever materialize with the carbon fiber cups? I think my friend has some, and I might be able to snag some from him if it'd be worth it!

post #552 of 5003
Thread Starter 

 

Originally Posted by Armaegis View Post

Actually, I was thinking that by attaching the shell to the backplate, the shell is effectively acting as a diaphragm (er... sort of) instead of a resonance chamber. I think this would improve resolution going forward since the plate is now coupled and will vibrate less, and those backwaves are now transferred directly to the shell rather than reflecting. The floating aspect may be unnecessary. A couple small contact points from the shell to the driver housing may be necessary for support.


You make an interesting point.  I wonder what would happen if the plate were braced, rather than damped with some goo.  Perhaps some kind of kinesthetic lightning rod could transfer that energy to the shells.  It's worth a second look.

post #553 of 5003

Dammit Bill, you've created a monster. very_evil_smiley.gif I'll be going up to Lowes to get some wood to try different shells. I'll be experimenting with different widths and lengths, and I'm going to write a review of each shell's strengths and weaknesses.

 

Should I just add it onto this thread, or create another thread and link it here? Should I do all the experimenting and release it all at once, or just add onto it as I go?

post #554 of 5003

I've been listening to the cans for quite some time now and.. I still can't figure it out. I don't quite trust myself because its easy to hear what you want to hear, and I can't quite remember what my Grados sounded like before the extensive modding anyway. I know I love what I'm hearing now and I'm more than satisfied with what I have.. but does changing just the shell on the back drastically affect SQ? And how so, actually?


Edited by Nightslayer - 12/25/10 at 2:54am
post #555 of 5003
Hi, I did the quarter mod and the dynamat mod on my recently acquired ms1, and the quarter mod worked really well, but the dynamat mod didn't. However, I used a piece of malleable rubber that I got from an art supply store instead of the dynamat; it's probably the reason why it didn't work so well. If I were to describe the sound after doing the mod, it increased the bass response and it felt tighter. Also, the soundstage decreased, I would describe it as if the music was concentrated in my nose, a more “nasal sound". In the end I reversed the mod and the sound felt more fuller in my head.
I'm sorry if I'm using vague terms to describe sounds. I am still on the learning side.

Btw Bilavideo, I really like your sense of humor. This is a great thread and thanks everyone.
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