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Ray Samuels SR71-B & LCD-2 (r2)

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

I could use some help with optimizing my SR71-B and LCD-2(r2) combo.

 

I emailed the folks at Audeze yesterday asking them which volume selector on the SR71-B would pair best with their 'phones, high, medium or low.  They needed a manual so they could look up some technical information and advise me.

 

I've been emailing Ray Samuels requesting a link to either a SR71-B manual or technical information and he won't give it to me.  All he will say is that the SR71-B can drive any headphone out there, and whatever setting those selectors are on will make no difference on performance.  I don't know why he is taking this position, but there it is.

 

Does anyone have the kind of information that Audeze would want to be able to tell me which volume selector to use to optimize the pairing of their headphone to the SR71-B?

 

So far, the medium setting seems lacking and either the low or high setting sounds best.  On low, I have to crank the volume up a lot, and on high I only need to move it up a bit to hear.

 

I'm not sure from a technical perspective what the issues are here.  I have never understood the concept of impedance and headphones.  I always thought that you plug them in and turn up the volume until you could hear.  If someone could jump in here and set me straight, I'd welcome that because maybe I am asking something from Ray that is a false question.

 

At any rate, I got the balanced termination for the universal cable made by ALO and I am liking what I am hearing at this early stage.

post #2 of 28

Hey Mike...

I really gave you the info needed to make you happy. There is no one way to listen to LCD-2 & SR-71B. Depending where you want your volume knob's indicator to be according to the iput signal strength,

you can choose the gain you desire with out any concern at all. The LCD-2 is very easy to be driven by SR-71A specially in balanced. If you like the middle gain that of 6 in SE, then use it my friend.

The low gain is 3 & the high gain is 11. But as I said from source to source & from recording to recording the signal strength will varry so you will need to adjust your volume control or gain setting, sometimes.

Hope this will shed some light.

Ray Samuels

 

 

post #3 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Samuels View Post

Hey Mike...

I really gave you the info needed to make you happy. There is no one way to listen to LCD-2 & SR-71B. Depending where you want your volume knob's indicator to be according to the iput signal strength,

you can choose the gain you desire with out any concern at all. The LCD-2 is very easy to be driven by SR-71A specially in balanced. If you like the middle gain that of 6 in SE, then use it my friend.

The low gain is 3 & the high gain is 11. But as I said from source to source & from recording to recording the signal strength will varry so you will need to adjust your volume control or gain setting, sometimes.

Hope this will shed some light.

Ray Samuels

 

 


Ray,

 

Thanks for stepping in and adressing my question.  Also thank you for what I percieve from you as just listen and use what sounds best.

 

As I tried to tell you in my email, I am only asking the question because the folks at Audeze asked for it.  I'm asking them, what output would be optimal with their headphones, they reply, they need more technical information to answer.  When you reply I don't need that information, it cuts me off and puts an end to my conversation with the people at Audeze because I can't give them what they are asking for. 

 

I am not trying to cause trouble or start any bizarre technical arguments with anybody.  I am consumer who bought your amp, and their headphones, and I want to get the most out of what I paid my money for.  They are willing to tell me what level to set the output at to optimize their headphones.  I think this is a reasonable question on my part.

 

I am using a balanced connector on the LCD-2 headphones, and I don't know what you mean by middle is 6, low is 3 and high is 11.  Do you think they will understand that?  If you do, I'll give them those numbers, but I suspect that will not be enough.  Please advise.

 

You are an accomplished highly respected person and any help and understanding you can give me to move this issue along and resolve it will be greatly appreciated.

 

Thank you.

 

post #4 of 28

Hi Mike,

 

Do you hear any sound improvement with SR71b ? as oppose to without SR71b directly connected to your source ?

 

I have the same setup like yours, LCD2 r2, SR71b and ALO balanced cable but don't hear noticeable differences.

 

Thanks in advance.

 

post #5 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadian411 View Post

Hi Mike,

 

Do you hear any sound improvement with SR71b ? as oppose to without SR71b directly connected to your source ?

 

I have the same setup like yours, LCD2 r2, SR71b and ALO balanced cable but don't hear noticeable differences.

 

Thanks in advance.

 


You mean connecting the Solo to a different headphone amp and comparing it to the SR71-B?
 

 

post #6 of 28

411, if you are only using balance out of the SR71b, the improvement may not be as big as using balance input also.  

 

As for Mike, you need to know that each song is recorded in a certain level of signal strength, that is why nobody can tell you to set the gain switch at certain level.  You have to listen to your music and decide if the signal strength of your materials are appropriate for each gain level.  If you set the gain state at low and you have to turn the volume all the way to the max, then its time to move up to the mid level.  You just have to play around until you can find a level that sound good to you.  For me, I'll start from high gain state unless the volume is just too much without turning the pot much.  Otherwise, I'll keep it at hi.

post #7 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jalo View Post

411, if you are only using balance out of the SR71b, the improvement may not be as big as using balance input also.  

 

As for Mike, you need to know that each song is recorded in a certain level of signal strength, that is why nobody can tell you to set the gain switch at certain level.  You have to listen to your music and decide if the signal strength of your materials are appropriate for each gain level.  If you set the gain state at low and you have to turn the volume all the way to the max, then its time to move up to the mid level.  You just have to play around until you can find a level that sound good to you.  For me, I'll start from high gain state unless the volume is just too much without turning the pot much.  Otherwise, I'll keep it at hi.


Well, I am not sure it is all that simple. 

 

I am still learning about voltage out/impedance and how different headphones like different impedances.  I am not sure if I even have the concept right.  What I was trying to get at with Ray, and what the people over at Audeze were trying to help with was something similiar to the way my WA22 works.  There is a low and high impedance switch, and depending on the type of headphone you have, you set that switch.  That is a starting point.  So what I am trying to do is to understand with the SR71-B puts out at each setting so the Audeze people can say, it is what their headphone likes.  I want to start there and will then work my way around.

 

So, I am going to keep learing about this stuff.  Right now I have my gain set at high and sometimes I set it to low based on the output levels of the songs.  Some songs are so hot, I have to turn the switch to low to have any granular gain control.  Other times, the recording is so low that I don't feel comfortable turning the volume all the way up to hear.  That is where I am with this.

 

Thanks.
 

 

post #8 of 28

Impedance, gain and volume are different.  Enjoy learning.

post #9 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jalo View Post

Impedance, gain and volume are different.  Enjoy learning.


 

Jalo, thanks. Care to explain or do you have a link or two you could point me to?
 

 

post #10 of 28

I think what Mike is asking for is the impedance at each of the gain settings. 

 

There is no reason why Ray shouldn't know this or want to keep it secret, so Ray, what is the output impedance of Hi (11) gain, Med (6)  gain and Lo(3) gain?

 

Thanks.beerchug.gif

post #11 of 28

Ray's answer was spot on and more tech info would just have you on tangents that would not address the issue and get you asking more questions. If you relate this reply to Audeze, I'm sure they'll agree. The 50 ohm load of the LCD is simply a non issue here. You're asking about gain but it's relative and no one can give you the simple answer you want even if they knew the gain of the amp and output voltage of your source because what some everybody has their own concept of loud enough and too loud or noisy. It's why the amp has selectable gain. Assuming that all levels sound the same, simply pick the one that allows you to play at your personal maximum volume while using most of the Volume control. It will give the least noise and finest adjustability in use.

post #12 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by upstateguy View Post

I think what Mike is asking for is the impedance at each of the gain settings. 

 

There is no reason why Ray shouldn't know this or want to keep it secret, so Ray, what is the output impedance of Hi (11) gain, Med (6)  gain and Lo(3) gain?

 

Thanks.beerchug.gif


Unlike tube amplifiers, the output impedance of most solid-state amplifiers is very low, often less than one ohm, although most speaker amps have their power ratings specified at 4 or 8 ohms.  Tube amps, especially those using output transformers, can have output impedances much higher than those of solid-state amplifiers and often use a switch in order to optimize the output impedance for a particular application such as speakers of differing impedances .  

 

The reason this is important is that the output impedance of an amp can greatly affect the damping factor of a speaker which is basically the ability of the amplifier to control the driver.  You can read more about that here

 

This is of far greater concern with loudspeakers than with headphones, due to the very small size of headphone drivers vs that of loudspeakers and also because of the fact that the damping factor becomes much less of an issue with the very low output impedance that is typical with nearly all solid-state amplifiers, especially portable headphone amps.  

 

I suspect that Ray didn't elaborate on this as output impedance/damping factor is, for all practical purposes, a non-issue with headphone amplifiers. 

 

 

post #13 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodvibes View Post

Ray's answer was spot on and more tech info would just have you on tangents that would not address the issue and get you asking more questions. If you relate this reply to Audeze, I'm sure they'll agree. The 50 ohm load of the LCD is simply a non issue here. You're asking about gain but it's relative and no one can give you the simple answer you want even if they knew the gain of the amp and output voltage of your source because what some everybody has their own concept of loud enough and too loud or noisy. It's why the amp has selectable gain. Assuming that all levels sound the same, simply pick the one that allows you to play at your personal maximum volume while using most of the Volume control. It will give the least noise and finest adjustability in use.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HiFlight View Post
Unlike tube amplifiers, the output impedance of most solid-state amplifiers is very low, often less than one ohm, although most speaker amps have their power ratings specified at 4 or 8 ohms.  Tube amps, especially those using output transformers, can have output impedances much higher than those of solid-state amplifiers and often use a switch in order to optimize the output impedance for a particular application such as speakers of differing impedances .  

 

The reason this is important is that the output impedance of an amp can greatly affect the damping factor of a speaker which is basically the ability of the amplifier to control the driver.  You can read more about that here

 

This is of far greater concern with loudspeakers than with headphones, due to the very small size of headphone drivers vs that of loudspeakers and also because of the fact that the damping factor becomes much less of an issue with the very low output impedance that is typical with nearly all solid-state amplifiers, especially portable headphone amps.  

 

I suspect that Ray didn't elaborate on this as output impedance/damping factor is, for all practical purposes, a non-issue with headphone amplifiers. 

 

 



Thanks goodvibes and HiFlight.  You guys make sense.  I got the impression that Ray totally understands what I'm driving at, and he just gave me the bottom line that is true and credible.  It must be frustrating for him at times when he is dealing with customers like me who don't know the difference between gain and impedance.  So, now I have my switches set at high (as opposed to medium or low) because it works best for me and I'm enjoying the SR71-B.

 

I do appreciate you guys taking the time to explain a little more to me, and I'm going to take up HiFlight's link and do more reading.

 

post #14 of 28


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HiFlight View Post

Unlike tube amplifiers, the output impedance of most solid-state amplifiers is very low, often less than one ohm, although most speaker amps have their power ratings specified at 4 or 8 ohms.  Tube amps, especially those using output transformers, can have output impedances much higher than those of solid-state amplifiers and often use a switch in order to optimize the output impedance for a particular application such as speakers of differing impedances .  

 

The reason this is important is that the output impedance of an amp can greatly affect the damping factor of a speaker which is basically the ability of the amplifier to control the driver.  You can read more about that here

 

This is of far greater concern with loudspeakers than with headphones, due to the very small size of headphone drivers vs that of loudspeakers and also because of the fact that the damping factor becomes much less of an issue with the very low output impedance that is typical with nearly all solid-state amplifiers, especially portable headphone amps.  

 

I suspect that Ray didn't elaborate on this as output impedance/damping factor is, for all practical purposes, a non-issue with headphone amplifiers. 

 

 


That's my understanding as well, nerver the less,  I'd still like to know what the output impedance is at each of the gain settings.

 

It looks very bad when a manufacturer won't post a straight answer to a very simple question.

 

post #15 of 28

It is all a matter of personal taste. I keep mine in the middle and use the volume control of my source because I'm runnign a slight imbalance heavy to the left so when I get the SR-71b volume where I want it I very rarely change unless I'm going between IEM's and Headphones. You just have to experiment until you get it where you want it

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