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Auditioned STAX new SR-009 - Page 3

post #31 of 54

While I'm sure the 009 is a great advance vs. the Lambdas, it sounds as though they have voiced the new unit back in that direction somewhat, yes? Is it something like the best elements of the 007 Mk. I&2 blended with the best of the more forward Lambdas? Or perhaps it is a completely different sound...
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnaud View Post



 

SR-007mkII being warm / even dark sounding with Stax amps is not news. I am 100% in agreement with Sasaki on this: the SR-009 clearly outshines the SR-007mkII in the transparency / clarity department and the tonal balance is clearly more neutral than Omega 2 mkII (out of 727A). I had very similar impressions to him during my time with the SR009.

 

Before dismissing this, wait for your chance to listen to these headphones. As I said before, these news Stax redefine what can be done achieved with headphones in my experience. It does not turn the omega 2 into a bad headphone. To be noted also, the gap between omega2 and sr-009 may be less pronounced out of an amp like the BHSE. 

 

 



 

post #32 of 54

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnaud View Post

Working my way through the interview, that's pretty good for studying Japanese. If I catch anything, I may post here but there's 90% chance of me misunderstanding ;). Well, a native speaker like sasaki could maybe correct the wrong bits, (kana? sasaki-san ;) )

 

 

Last time I asked my father-in-law to translate the very first interview with him (the stax engineer), my father-in-law said: "Humm, he goes too much technical... I do not understand..."

 

rolleyes.gif

 

I am looking forward to hearing from you!

 

biggrin.gif


Edited by jgazal - 4/5/11 at 5:35pm
post #33 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgazal View Post

 

 

Last time I asked my father-in-law to translate the very first interview with him (the stax engineer), my father-in-law said: "Humm, he goes too much technical... I do not understand..."

 

rolleyes.gif

 

I am looking forward to hearing from you!

 

biggrin.gif


Indeed, it's not easy. Fortunately I work in the field of vibro-acoustics so some of the technical vocabulary, I can catch. But overall, it is difficult to follow... I am a bit over half way through and started to post my interprations here: http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/547356/wanna-buy-the-stax-sr009-should-i/45#post_7385453

One thing that caught my attention is the mention of a change in policy for the sr009. It would be great if sasaki-san could confirm / correct:
- Fujiya avic mentions that stax gear is popular in japan but also especially overseas
- Interviewer adds that they got request from outside japan right after the announcement ( some of the stax mafia I suppose wink.gif )
- interviewer adds that unfortunately they cant ship outside japan
- to this, stax answers that sr009 is a special product and that the warranty policy will changr for the sr009 series.
- here's where I am probably not getting it right, but it would seem stax will accept direct returns from customers as long as they provide sales receipt and have registered the product. I guess before you were forced to go through the reseller?
- I will listen again but maybe I won't catch the precise detail.

Another thing of interest mentioned so far is that the design was driven out of "lack of satisfaction" with the omega 2 performance. From my previous discussion with the same stax person, he said the omega2 frame and electrode were designed under certain cost constraint which forced them to make compromises. Not this time, it seems, or at least less compromises, especially for key mechanical parts.

More later...
post #34 of 54

Some more on the Stax interview (question / answers at the end): 

> People are surprised why Stax is machine the arc assembly rather than the cheaper formed sheet metal process.

> Stax replies that it's difficult to achieve such a finish unless you are milling. For instance each edge has a kind of 45 degrees "wedge" (I don't know how to say in English) and you can't see it in the video but the finish / precision of the machining is indeed glorious when seen upfront.

 

> The main differences between the prototype that I could listen to last year at the Fujiya Avic festival (and later on as Fujiya Avic shop during the new year break) resides in the arc assembly / where it meets the headband. No changes were made to the electrode itself so only cosmetic changes to improve the finish.

 

> About which stax amps are suitable (~37min): 727A, 007Ta, even 600 limited edition amp is suitable. However, at about 38 min he seems to be referring to the importance of the driver for optimal sound of the earspeaker but what the price / weight of the driver quickly goes out of control if they want to improve the current design. Here, I might be completely wrong, it'd be nice if someone who speaks Japanese could listen to that part.

 

> People asking if tubes or SS which is better. Suzuki-san prefers SS.

 

> In regards to the headband design, it is common with the 507 but actually the shape was developed for the SR009 and it was used for the 507, not the other way around. Actually, they expect to use this headband across the line in the futur (as Birgir justified in another thread recently).

 

> In a sort of tongue in cheek way, they said the color of the housing (brighter than the silver color of the 007a) was not decided before hand but a result of the design. Maybe they're referring to a maker like Ultrasone who probably worked the other way around for the Edition 10 for example.

 

> Although it is actually a bit heavier than 007a, it does not feel so because of the change in headband support. From my time with it, I indeed  could not feel the 009 being heavier on my head. Maybe have to see after 3-4hours of wearing it straight.

 

... More later...

post #35 of 54

I think that I posted this in the wrong forum, so I'll post here:

Stax SR-009 headphones

I've ordered the Stax SR-009, and a Smyth 'Realiser' processor, for five reasons:
 

 

1. Sound quality/realism may well be the best available for earphones.
 

2. The continuing threat of dollar devaluation/inflation - so, ‘get 'em while u can’.   Inflation can't happen here?
 

 

3. From watching the previously referenced {posted} Japanese TV interview video, it appears that the new Stax SR-009 is truly more an "Open Air" flow design compared the SR-007 (I have SR-007 Omega MK1.

 

Could somebody confirm that the SR-009 phones permit internal air flow true open air design)?

and they can fell 'hot' over the ears, and also subject to diaphragm noise (crackling noises when moving head, etc. -- diaphragm movement against the stators due to earcup pressure variation, lack of internal air flow/circulation with tight ear cup seal).

BTW, my Stax SR-007 somehow sounds more "real" to me than my Sennheiser HD800 phones (At this time can't explain why this is so).

The lack of air circulation in my Omegas (the ear cups have relatively tight seal) often causes me some discomfort after an hour or so -- and it's worse in warm humid summer days.
In the Japanese Stax interview video, the circular electrostatic sound transducer element in the SR-009 appeared to be open in the center, as well as having additional open holes around the periphery. So, I'm hoping/anticipating that the SR-009 will be much more comfortable for hot humid summer days.
 

 

4. I’m getting the Smyth 'Realiser' processor which reportedly offers a very good multichannel soundstage recreation from headphones (Stax phones have been recommended by Smyth)
 

5. Planning to downsize in retirement - move to smaller, lower cost of living housing where earphones might just have to be the primary sound source. Large loudspeakers (especially multichannel) ) no longer practical, & WAF. I use headphones most of the time even now - usually just more convenient to get system up and running.
_________________________
Thoughts about an amplifier for the Stax SR-009 and electrostatic headphones in general:
Currently, I’m listening to my Omega SR-007 phones with a SRM-252. IMO, for low & normal listening volume levels, the result is more than satisfactory.
The circuit topology and solid-state devices used are essentially the same as the SRM 323 amp (I have the schematic). Mainly, what’s different is the power supply, and the output stage bias – more voltage and current drive capability.
An electrostatic transducer basically presents a capacitive load to an amplifier. For a given voltage swing (producing a sound pressure level), amplifier output drive current is proportional to frequency, or rate of change of voltage (i = C dv/dt).
I feel that heroic output power capability (high current * voltage) provided by the far more expensive power amps is not really needed at normal listening levels (for me, anyway) – as long as the electrostatic amp behaves well with very low distortion at small to moderate voltage swings. I’ve listened to tube (I have a Stax tube amp also) and solid state amps, and feel that the well-designed Stax SRM-323S should offer all the amp power I need, even for the SR-009 (yes , perhaps a radical opinion). Even the lowly STAX SRM-252 amp is direct coupled, with no coupling caps in the path – IMO, a remarkably nice sounding design.
I used to feel that tubes were somehow naturally better than solid state for Stax headphones – not any more.

post #36 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sasaki View Post

IMO the difference between SR007 and SR009 is similar to the difference of HD650 and HD800.
So personal preference would also be a matter here. I think if you prefer HD800 rather, you would take SR009.


 

these mirror my thoughts in relation to comparing the lambda line to the 007mk1 (the 007 beign the 650), so it seems logical

post #37 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill13 View Post

I think that I posted this in the wrong forum, so I'll post here:

Stax SR-009 headphones

I've ordered the Stax SR-009, and a Smyth 'Realiser' processor, for five reasons:
 


Doh!  I can't imagine a better set-up. What will you be using for your source?

 

post #38 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by davidhunternyc View Post




Doh!  I can't imagine a better set-up. What will you be using for your source?

 

 

My source:

 

I have the OPPO BDP-95 multichannel DVD/Blu-ray disc player which plays almost every disc format including SACD, DVD-Audio.

The OPPO BDP-95 is an ‘audiophile’ player that does 7.1/5.1 channels, and so forth.

 

Expect this Oppo to sound great with the Smyth Realiser processor = a virtual multichannel SOA speaker system through a great pair of earphones.

 

 

 

As a retired hobbyist who plans a {typical senior} move to 'downsized' housing in a warmer climate, this setup should {hopefully} fulfill my desire for a ultra-high-end listening experience.

 

 

Only hope that my SR-009 has some venting for air pressure equalization == no 'Stax farts', and so forth).

 

The SR-009 ‘sound-element’ assembly (images on Japanese TV show) appears to have an open center hole plus many smaller thru-holes around the diaphragm/stators periphery (?).

 

 

 

BTW, Arnaud recently purchased Stax SR-009 phones, and posted his enthusiastic (!) comments – see the other SR-009 thread: ‘New Listening Impressions – C32 prototype ---'

 

 

Bill 
 

 

post #39 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill13 View Post

Only hope that my SR-009 has some venting for air pressure equalization == no 'Stax farts', and so forth).

 


Hi Bill, sorry, I think the SR-009 may not have venting like the 007mkII. It makes a sound as soon as you press the cups toward the ears even if slowly / not by much.

 

But, what is the major problem with this? For me, as soon as they're seated, it's all good. Plus, it's apparently not damaging in the least to the driver so, imo, it's a very minor for the sake of the best sound.

post #40 of 54

Arnaud,

Unless the new SR-009 ear pads somehow alleviate the ear-sweat problem I’ve experienced with my Omega SR-007 MK1 (sealed, no air venting), I’ve got something serious to worry about - so I think.

 

On hot humid summer days my sealed SR-007 MK1 becomes all but intolerable after an hour or so (ear sweat discomfort).  Maybe I’m just more sensitive to a lack of internal air venting, or tightly sealed ear cup construction/materials, than other people.

 

I’m now wondering: maybe I should wait until new SOA earphone competitive challengers appear on the market – or for now,  just settle for lower sound quality earphones (also, much less expensive).

 

Bill

post #41 of 54



manaox2, you look like Obama.

Quote:
Originally Posted by manaox2 View Post

Thanks for the quick impressions, great pics btw.



 

post #42 of 54

I also have the Oppo 95 - absolutely astounding quality in terms of bluray playback, and also not bad for 2 channel music, given its independent circuit and power dedicated to the stereo out.

 

I thought it was very good (and it still is) - until I had bought the Esoteric K-01 - and yes, at thirteen times the price of the Oppo 95 (more in the States) it'd better sound good with the Stax 009. I won't eorry too much - it made my LCD2 and speaker system like heaven and earth and night and day and all that, already.  Will let you guys know how the 009 sounds with it,  after I get the 009 one way or the other.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill13 View Post



 

My source:

 

I have the OPPO BDP-95 multichannel DVD/Blu-ray disc player which plays almost every disc format including SACD, DVD-Audio.

The OPPO BDP-95 is an ‘audiophile’ player that does 7.1/5.1 channels, and so forth.

 

Expect this Oppo to sound great with the Smyth Realiser processor = a virtual multichannel SOA speaker system through a great pair of earphones.

 

 

 

As a retired hobbyist who plans a {typical senior} move to 'downsized' housing in a warmer climate, this setup should {hopefully} fulfill my desire for a ultra-high-end listening experience.

 

 

Only hope that my SR-009 has some venting for air pressure equalization == no 'Stax farts', and so forth).

 

The SR-009 ‘sound-element’ assembly (images on Japanese TV show) appears to have an open center hole plus many smaller thru-holes around the diaphragm/stators periphery (?).

 

 

 

BTW, Arnaud recently purchased Stax SR-009 phones, and posted his enthusiastic (!) comments – see the other SR-009 thread: ‘New Listening Impressions – C32 prototype ---'

 

 

Bill 
 

 



 


Edited by googleli - 5/25/11 at 5:57am
post #43 of 54

Interesting news about the SR009, got a heads up on my pre-order that Stax is stopping production and delaying for a couple of months while they correct an issue that came up with some of the headphones ("about 12% of SR-009 developed noises due to microscopic dust between the stator and the film... Stax is currently revising the design and solving the problem.  Shipment will resume within 60 days").

post #44 of 54
I learned my lesson this time not to hesitate when deciding. See my avatar.
post #45 of 54

Congratz!!!!!!!!  She's the luckiest kid on earth!!!!!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

I learned my lesson this time not to hesitate when deciding. See my avatar.


 

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