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PS1000 Impressions Thread - Page 66

post #976 of 1236
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackstoneJD View Post

By the way when I say your wife, dog or neighbors won't let you use speakers, I'm talking about me. Except in my case it is my wife, my neighbors and their dog that don't like my speakers or my music.

Look, if you are using graphs to make purchasing decisions you are going about this in the wrong way in my opinion. My dealer lets me borrow the phones for two weeks before making a decision. There is no need for graphs when I can use my ears to compare.

I understand what people say about the Grado treble, ect, because I've heard it myself. But in my opinion, that harshness or sibilance is nothing but noise in your system that the Grado is just relaying. It could be anything, issues with your power lines, deficiencies in the way your dac or amp is designed. One issue Ayre addressed with the DSD upgrade to their QB-9 DAC was the power supply to the USB interface, for example, which supposedly makes performance more consistent regardless of what computer, motherboard, or usb port you are using. When I made that upgrade, some recordings that used to be a bit harsh now tickle your ears with the PS1000. When you make improvements to upstream components like that and the headphones sound TOTALLY different, that is transparency. When the headphones put their ugly sound signature on everything you listen to, that is a problem. I don't hear a Grado sound at all. They TOTALLY disappear. I think they have a really bad rap on these forums.

 

I'm sorry, but this is circular logic. You are presenting a theory that can't be falsified. If anybody experiences something different it can never be the headphone, it has to be everything else. Not trying to be rude or argumentative, but if this was an argument being presented as a valid theory (which in reality it is) it fails the very first test of a good theory; that being that if a theory can't be falsified, it is not a good theory. There are several other possible explanations that you are seemingly discounting out of hand. One such alternative explanation is that you are less sensitive to the particular sound signature that for others is an issue. That seems far more plausible then micro levels of noise being delivered through utility power having such a profound effect on the sound.


Edited by Sonic Defender - 6/28/14 at 9:20am
post #977 of 1236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonic Defender View Post

I'm sorry, but this is circular logic. You are presenting a theory that can't be falsified. If anybody experiences something different it can never be the headphone, it has to be everything else. Not trying to be rude or argumentative, but if this was an argument being presented as a valid theory (which in reality it is) it fails the very first test of a good theory; that being that if a theory can't be falsified, it is not a good theory. There are several other possible explanations that you are seemingly discounting out of hand. One such alternative explanation is that you are less sensitive to the particular sound signature that for others is an issue. That seems far more plausible then micro levels of noise being delivered through utility power having such a profound effect on the sound.
well, maybe blackstonejd is right and its just the source and dac... Only one way to find out I say! Try the same setup he is using and compare to other setups.
post #978 of 1236
Quote:
Originally Posted by LCfiner View Post

As someone who just got a MAD Ear+, hearing that someone thinks it makes an excellent pairing with the PS1000 is making me reach for my wallet… 



 



I’ve had the PS1000 twice before. I have a weird relationship with this headphone. I loved it the first time, but then wanted to downsize and sold it. I got it again a year later - impulse buy at a great price - and actively disliked it. Second time was with the aggressive Burson Soloist so I think that may have had a bit to do with it - the highs were too much for me.



 



But I liked my first time with this headphone so much that I’m thinking of going big again and picking up an e series (I’d want that slightly improved bass and soundstage capability if I’m spending well over a grand) later this year.



 



I know firsthand how the Ear+ can make the RS1i a little smoother but still have lots of depth and detail. So hearing that it could do the same to the PS1000 is very tempting...



 



 



side note: it’s interesting to go back to the first posts in the thread from 2010. A lot of the popular kilobuck headphones head-fiers use now weren’t around so points of comparison are limited. and, even in those early days, there were sill lots of talk about the treble and how it had to be tamed for some people (some liked it as-is, of course).



 



I think if we were to talk about why this headphone isn’t more popular around here, it comes down to a few things, imo.



 



1) The price is very high - way more than an LCD-2 or HE-500 - and it scares people off even before they do a lot of research.



2) For those who do research and read impressions, they find a lot of people have issues with the treble or are disappointed with bass extension, and it scares them off



3) Grado quirks that are cute or charming on 200 or even 300 dollar headphones (the messy glue, the packaging, the basic rodblock and gimbal assembly) become sticking points on 1700 headphones.



4) And, yes, finally, they are the worst measuring and least accurate of all the main 1000+ headphones according to measurements and (most) listening impressions. They do not have real sub bass. They do have a hard to tame treble. They are more fun than accurate and, for this price, that’s a niche within a niche audience. Fun can be had for cheap, after all.



 



Personally, I’m at a point where I know that I want that fun again, but with more details and clarity and bigger  soundstaging than the other Grados. so that’s why I’m thinking of jumping back in.


 




Please allow me to hurt your pocket book a little more.

I had an A/B comparison of two very different amps using the PS1000 for about two weeks--that was all that my friend was willing to lend me the amp..
By a small margin, with the PS1000, I preferred the sound of the MAD Ear+ HD ($750) to that of the...Apex Pinnacle ($10,000)

Unfortunately, that was the only battle that David won against Goliath.
The Apex Pinnacle trounced the MAD Ear+ HD with all other headphones except for the HE-6 where they both ran out of jiuce.

For the PS1000, you cannot do much better than the MAD Ear+ HD at any price.

It is not a matter of quality, transparentcy, etc. It is just a freaky perfect fit.
post #979 of 1236
Quote:
Originally Posted by DisCHORDDubstep View Post


well, maybe blackstonejd is right and its just the source and dac... Only one way to find out I say! Try the same setup he is using and compare to other setups.


 That is another possible explanation.

post #980 of 1236

I can't make sense typing on a freakin' iPhone so I am breaking out the mechanical keyboard. First of all, I am VERY sensitive to the type of sound signature that is commonly attributed to these headphones. That is precisely why I have such a strong opinion on the subject. I absolutely cannot stand harsh, raspy treble, or what people call a "hot" sound. I would not even recommend PS1000 to most people because they are so susceptible to sounding hot. It can manifest itself as actual pain in your ears. I get it.  My premise is that the vast majority of dacs and front end components are themselves hot, even some really good ones. Even good systems, especially digital systems, are hot. The best manufacturers are continually refining their products in ways that bring out more detail with less sizzle and noise at the same time.

 

Further, even if you spend oodles of money on front end components, various factors can make your system sound hot. Do you have dimmer switches in your house? Have you ever seen what a dimmer switch does to a line noise indicator like a PS Audio Harvester. Even if you don't believe in that stuff, there is no question that it is a variable when the dimmer switch is activated and the light on the noise harvester is blinking like crazy.

 

The majority view is that PS1000 is a hot sounding headphone. It is hard to argue with that. Compared to HD800 and LCD3, which I just heard today, they are much more aggressive sounding and brighter with the same equipment. The HD800 is very laid back in comparison. The LCD perhaps even more so. The HD800 is perhaps cleaner with less distortion.

 

The problem I have is that when you start pairing the PS1000 to a reference level system, in my experience, and you feed it a more refined signal, that extra treble that would otherwise annoy simply becomes more detail and I believe it becomes a strength, not a weakness. When you can eliminate the harsh treble completely with a dac revision like I just did, and get more detail, ambient information, better imaging, tighter punchier bass, and a more balanced sound at the same time, that is not a headphone that is hot. That is a headphone that simply has potential that needs better upstream components to be realized. That is an empirical observation based on recent experience.

 

And this is not a system where one day it sounds hot and the next day it sounds nice. These phones deliver CONSISTENTLY with this particular setup. They never sound hot. It does not matter if I drink or don't drink, or if I am tired or cranky or the moon is full or whatever, or whether my ears are waxy or not.

 

Further, regardless of their deficiencies, no headphone I have heard does a better job of emulating the experience of a high end speaker. The HD800 has their tilted forward drivers, the PS1000 has its tipped U shaped sound or whatever you want to call it, but subjectively PS1000 is just the most right sounding to my ears when you get it dialed in. 

 

Just my not so humble opinion.


Edited by BlackstoneJD - 6/28/14 at 2:49pm
post #981 of 1236
BlackstoneJD,

I understand your point about the role of various links in the chain.

If you dabble in Audio long enough you also know this: audio gears are NOT perfect, far from it, high prices, manufacturers’ hyperbolae or owner's bias notwithstanding. Once we accept that, things gets a little easier to understand.

So, selecting the right combination of cable and amplifier for our favorite pair of headphones, in this case the PS1000, is not a simple matter of assembling the most neutral, most transparent, most expensive or even the highest quality DAC, cable, amp, etc.. Rather it is a difficult balancing act of matching the strengths and weaknesses of each link in the chain to achieve the sound that we prefer, which varies from person to person depending on our musical taste our hearing acuity.

For the PS1000, the easier solution for me was to pick a relatively inexpensive amp (MAD Ears+ HD; $750) that has a smooth and forward-sounding midrange and limited extension in the trebles. Add to that an OCC Copper cable with smooth transient and rounded high frequencies, and that pretty much took care of the PS troubles in the trebles with only a minimal sacrifice in soundstage and inner details (an apologies to Star Trek fans).

A more difficult and far more expensive but also more rewarding solution is to find a source, cable and amp that are prestine in the high frequencies. Using the PS Audio PerfectWave transport and DAC ($8,000) or an analog source (SME 30/2; SME V and Lyra Titan: about $ 40,000), OCC Copper Venom cable (Toxic Cables; ~$750) and any one of the four excellent amps, the Woo WA5 (~$4,500 with upgrades), or EAR HP-4 (~$5,000) for tubes and the Bakoon HPA-21 (~$3,000) or HeadRoom GS-X Mark 2 (~$3,000) for solid-state, I was able to re-produce wonderful music with the PS1000. One benefit of this approach was that any one of these four amps can deliver excellent sound with most of the high-performance headphones out there.

So why going to all that trouble? With the right associated gears, the PS1000 has a highly musical and unique sound that cannot be found in other headphones. As a matter of fact, I would go so far as to say that each pair of the following headphones has its own unique sonic signature: Grado PS1000, Sennheiser HD800, Fostex TH-900, Audeze LCD3, HiFiMan HE-6 and Stax 007 Mk1. And therein lies my problem: I have to keep them all to the detriment of my pocket book.
post #982 of 1236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin_Time View Post

BlackstoneJD,

I understand your point about the role of various links in the chain.

If you dabble in Audio long enough you also know this: audio gears are NOT perfect, far from it, high prices, manufacturers’ hyperbolae or owner's bias notwithstanding. Once we accept that, things gets a little easier to understand.

So, selecting the right combination of cable and amplifier for our favorite pair of headphones, in this case the PS1000, is not a simple matter of assembling the most neutral, most transparent, most expensive or even the highest quality DAC, cable, amp, etc.. Rather it is a difficult balancing act of matching the strengths and weaknesses of each link in the chain to achieve the sound that we prefer, which varies from person to person depending on our musical taste our hearing acuity.

For the PS1000, the easier solution for me was to pick a relatively inexpensive amp (MAD Ears+ HD; $750) that has a smooth and forward-sounding midrange and limited extension in the trebles. Add to that an OCC Copper cable with smooth transient and rounded high frequencies, and that pretty much took care of the PS troubles in the trebles with only a minimal sacrifice in soundstage and inner details (an apologies to Star Trek fans).

A more difficult and far more expensive but also more rewarding solution is to find a source, cable and amp that are prestine in the high frequencies. Using the PS Audio PerfectWave transport and DAC ($8,000) or an analog source (SME 30/2; SME V and Lyra Titan: about $ 40,000), OCC Copper Venom cable (Toxic Cables; ~$750) and any one of the four excellent amps, the Woo WA5 (~$4,500 with upgrades), or EAR HP-4 (~$5,000) for tubes and the Bakoon HPA-21 (~$3,000) or HeadRoom GS-X Mark 2 (~$3,000) for solid-state, I was able to re-produce wonderful music with the PS1000. One benefit of this approach was that any one of these four amps can deliver excellent sound with most of the high-performance headphones out there.

So why going to all that trouble? With the right associated gears, the PS1000 has a highly musical and unique sound that cannot be found in other headphones. As a matter of fact, I would go so far as to say that each pair of the following headphones has its own unique sonic signature: Grado PS1000, Sennheiser HD800, Fostex TH-900, Audeze LCD3, HiFiMan HE-6 and Stax 007 Mk1. And therein lies my problem: I have to keep them all to the detriment of my pocket book.
are the akg k812 and k1000 so easily forgotten?
post #983 of 1236

It's really weird that there's so little talk about K812 on head-fi in general...

post #984 of 1236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin_Time View Post

BlackstoneJD,

I understand your point about the role of various links in the chain.

If you dabble in Audio long enough you also know this: audio gears are NOT perfect, far from it, high prices, manufacturers’ hyperbolae or owner's bias notwithstanding. Once we accept that, things gets a little easier to understand.

So, selecting the right combination of cable and amplifier for our favorite pair of headphones, in this case the PS1000, is not a simple matter of assembling the most neutral, most transparent, most expensive or even the highest quality DAC, cable, amp, etc.. Rather it is a difficult balancing act of matching the strengths and weaknesses of each link in the chain to achieve the sound that we prefer, which varies from person to person depending on our musical taste our hearing acuity.

For the PS1000, the easier solution for me was to pick a relatively inexpensive amp (MAD Ears+ HD; $750) that has a smooth and forward-sounding midrange and limited extension in the trebles. Add to that an OCC Copper cable with smooth transient and rounded high frequencies, and that pretty much took care of the PS troubles in the trebles with only a minimal sacrifice in soundstage and inner details (an apologies to Star Trek fans).

A more difficult and far more expensive but also more rewarding solution is to find a source, cable and amp that are prestine in the high frequencies. Using the PS Audio PerfectWave transport and DAC ($8,000) or an analog source (SME 30/2; SME V and Lyra Titan: about $ 40,000), OCC Copper Venom cable (Toxic Cables; ~$750) and any one of the four excellent amps, the Woo WA5 (~$4,500 with upgrades), or EAR HP-4 (~$5,000) for tubes and the Bakoon HPA-21 (~$3,000) or HeadRoom GS-X Mark 2 (~$3,000) for solid-state, I was able to re-produce wonderful music with the PS1000. One benefit of this approach was that any one of these four amps can deliver excellent sound with most of the high-performance headphones out there.

So why going to all that trouble? With the right associated gears, the PS1000 has a highly musical and unique sound that cannot be found in other headphones. As a matter of fact, I would go so far as to say that each pair of the following headphones has its own unique sonic signature: Grado PS1000, Sennheiser HD800, Fostex TH-900, Audeze LCD3, HiFiMan HE-6 and Stax 007 Mk1. And therein lies my problem: I have to keep them all to the detriment of my pocket book.

Just my two cents...I never really got the PS1000s when hearing them at various meets/audio stores. But that was always on gear that wasn't "optimal" IMO. They sounded pretty good out of the MAD Ear+HD when I heard the combination, but not enough to motivate me to buy them. Then I got to audition the PS1000s in my home on my BDA-2 / GS-X Mk2 setup...and a few weeks later I bought them. Now with the PS1000e's in house, I'm a happy camper. They aren't as ruthless of my upstream gear like my HD800s (but then again, no dynamic headphone I've heard really is).

post #985 of 1236
If you are in the Chicago area Audio Consultants (Evanston) now carries Audeze LCD3, Grado PS1000 and Sennheiser HD800 and they have a booth with those phones, the Bryston amp, the Sennheiser amp, and a decent Arcam CD player so you can compare.

They have pretty much all the phones from those brands I think.

Not sure if their demo model is the PS1000e though but the phones are voiced so differently it doesn't really matter.

They added Audeze to the line a few months ago.
Edited by BlackstoneJD - 6/28/14 at 9:11pm
post #986 of 1236

Surely I'd like to give a pair a try, but won't have the budget for a loong time

post #987 of 1236
Quote:
Originally Posted by pearljam50000 View Post
 

It's really weird that there's so little talk about K812 on head-fi in general...


I find it kinda weird that the whole hype-train thing has gone AWOL from head fi in general...I kinda miss those.

 

Anyways, I'm looking forward to hearing the new Grado e series including the PS1000s, which I dismissed before realising that the V curve has its place in audio.

post #988 of 1236
Quote:
Originally Posted by SP Wild View Post
 


 before realising that the V curve has its place in audio.


What about taking very good neutral headphones like the Beyer T1, and instead just applying a v-curve DSP in the processing chain? Like in Foobar..

post #989 of 1236
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicoguy View Post
 


What about taking very good neutral headphones like the Beyer T1, and instead just applying a v-curve DSP in the processing chain? Like in Foobar..


For one, the T1, whilst I think sounded brilliant, never came off as a true open headphone to me and secondly, the whole desktop listening thing isn't for everyone...I am a potato couch kinda guy...I prefer the Xbox gaming experience, movie and audio experience on my couch...and sometimes an EQ is not conveniently available.  I know, I know...for you new millenium types this is not an issue...but I now count myself amongst the old geezers.  :wink:

post #990 of 1236

Hey MacedonianHero, , of the cans in your signature, if you had the pick just one to keep as your go to for versatility, engagement and musicality, which would you elect to keep? I sold a D7000 recently and have been considering something like the TH900 or maybe an HE560. I would be interested in your thoughts on your collection.

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