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Some OVERRATED High End Gear. - Page 7

post #91 of 285

Agreed on all your points.  I like HF since there's so much communication going on, but it's gotten to the point where I automatically check a person's profile to do a first pass of their credibility (and sometimes check their past posts).  There's a lot of ridiculous stuff like people who main $100 gear cavalierly commenting on $5000+ gear, like people with low-end Senns and Sonys talking about R10s and SR009s like they're best buddies.  Unfortunately you need to pay to play, but that's why there are so many regional meetups, so people can have a chance to listen to gear without any dealer pressure.

 

Another thing I'm noticing is a lot of hostility towards other views (from psychoacoustics to music preferences), and those threads go on for pages before a mod finally steps in to tell people to knock it off.  It's often the native English speakers, not the ESLs, who are the most belittling.

 

I think a lot of threads would be improved if people weren't afraid of losing face, and admit that they have no direct experience with the gear they're commenting on.  I think it's great that there's so much thread participation, but misinformation doesn't help.  I hear things used to be a lot more civil, and some of the most informative threads I've run across are dated back to 2006-08.

post #92 of 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elysian View Post

The electrostats have such a different sound signature that I don't think it's a better or worse argument, similar to how it's hard to say whether wine or beer is better.

 

That said, the cost to get into the higher-end electrostat gear is probably beyond what most people think is worth spending on listening to music.



I have experience in both systems and I do agree that a TOTL electrostats is "better" than TOTL dynamics/ortho but at a significantly higher cost. It's also a shame that the HeadAmp KGSS has been discontinued which probably represents the perfect price/performance ratio as far as driving the Omegas goes. 

 

The $500 - $1500 is where the grey line lies which an electrostat is not necessarily better than its dynamic counterparts. I jumped from the SR404LE to the LCD2 after all...

 

On another hand, one can't help to wonder whether at the price range of the SR-009 and its accompanying TOTL energizer wouldn't it be wiser to invest in a true speaker setup? I find that no matter how good your headphones are, its imaging and soundstage capabilities are very well behind a proper speaker system. 

post #93 of 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by K3cT View Post





I have experience in both systems and I do agree that a TOTL electrostats is "better" than TOTL dynamics/ortho but at a significantly higher cost. It's also a shame that the HeadAmp KGSS has been discontinued which probably represents the perfect price/performance ratio as far as driving the Omegas goes. 

 

The $500 - $1500 is where the grey line lies which an electrostat is not necessarily better than its dynamic counterparts. I jumped from the SR404LE to the LCD2 after all...

 

On another hand, one can't help to wonder whether at the price range of the SR-009 and its accompanying TOTL energizer wouldn't it be wiser to invest in a true speaker setup? I find that no matter how good your headphones are, its imaging and soundstage capabilities are very well behind a proper speaker system. 



I have an HE-6 and I still have not experienced a hint of the 3D soundstage my speaker system can project when I had them even playing the same music.

Even those who were not into this used to say that without me referring to the 3D soundstage. This was playing well recorded jazz.

When I read posters here stating depth I've always wondered.

post #94 of 285

The closest I've heard to a soundstage on my O2s is on really well-recorded classical.  Taking the O2s, LCD2 Rev2, and GS1000i into account, my perception of soundstage/depth is almost non-existent compared to any multichannel speaker setup I've heard.  I love detail over soundstage so headphones work for me, but if I was still DJing, I'd be making far more use of speakers throughout personal use.

 

I've actually been thinking of picking up a used pair of Lambdas just to hear what some people say about the Lambdas with piano and vocals.

 

It probably comes down to living conditions and listening preferences, as the headphone vs. speaker utility graph likely overlaps quite a bit between $1000 to $5000.

 

I'd love to hear a TOTL ortho/dynamic setup, especially after I get my BHSE, but I have a feeling even the TOTL ortho/dynamic won't be able to get close to the effortlessness the electrostats have.  For my personal use, I really like that sensation of hearing sound just materialize out of air.  Would especially love to hear the high-end Sonys to get a sense of how they compare vs. the O2 and SR009.

post #95 of 285

I had a 2 channel system with a pair of 5 ft. ribbon speakers. Listening to LA4 jazz band, I can tell where the 4 band members are and which one is in front of the other.

 

Come to think of it now, that could be the effect of a dipole. A ribbon speaker radiates front and back. If the back is a few feet away from the wall, the wall reflects back and you hear it slightly delayed.


Edited by wuwhere - 9/5/11 at 1:29am
post #96 of 285

I may get some flak for this but imo the most overrated piece of gear I have heard recently is the Schiit Valhalla. I have a Lyr and really like it and have heard a Asgard and like it too. However, I find the valhalla to be quite poor compared to other amps in the price range such as the asgard, LD mk4 and the nuforce hd

post #97 of 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by OzarkTom View Post

The all time Best electrostatic loudspeaker was the Acoustat X's with the Acoustat direct drive OTL tube amps. Those were built back in the late 70's and no ESL has ever come close to the X's. In fact, those make every other ESL that ever has been made sound broken. With no transformers anywhere in the signal path, you had the most detailed and dynamic ESL ever made.


Curious, have you heard the TOTL Soundlabs? I'm really not a huge fan of most modern stat speakers, but I think those are very, very good, provided you can fit them in your room.

 

post #98 of 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by K3cT View Post

On another hand, one can't help to wonder whether at the price range of the SR-009 and its accompanying TOTL energizer wouldn't it be wiser to invest in a true speaker setup? I find that no matter how good your headphones are, its imaging and soundstage capabilities are very well behind a proper speaker system. 


In many cases, yes. In my case no. I work from a home office, which is a small and somewhat awkwardly shaped room full of desks and equipment. Acoustically its a mess, from 100Hz on down, response is all over the place. I could try to throw some kind of DSP or treatments at the problem, but its far easier to just enjoy my headphones and not have to worry about any of that. Plus, even if I could manage to deal with the uneven FR, there's just no room for speakers to achieve any depth or much in the way of height to the stage - they have to go too close to the wall for that.

 

 

post #99 of 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveBSC View Post




In many cases, yes. In my case no. I work from a home office, which is a small and somewhat awkwardly shaped room full of desks and equipment. Acoustically its a mess, from 100Hz on down, response is all over the place. I could try to throw some kind of DSP or treatments at the problem, but its far easier to just enjoy my headphones and not have to worry about any of that. Plus, even if I could manage to deal with the uneven FR, there's just no room for speakers to achieve any depth or much in the way of height to the stage - they have to go too close to the wall for that.

 

 




Agree, the number one thing that seems to be over looked in what some posters are saying is Room Acoustics. Without the proper room acoustics and room size, even a very high end speaker system will sound odd like a echo or a reverb because the sound is bouncing off the walls, there by loosing a lot of detail. Yes you can use some sort of DSP but still will not come close (for the most part) to the real thing.

 

Actually you can achieve a very nice illusion of a great speaker system (5.1/7.1), room acoustics, etc, coming from headphones like the HE6's. There by giving you the illusion of great depth and a 3D surround effect, to the point it becomes difficult to tell if you are using headphones or not, except for the fact you can feel the headphone on your head.


Edited by sillysally - 9/5/11 at 5:36am
post #100 of 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by sillysally View Post

Actually you can achieve a very nice illusion of a great speaker system (5.1/7.1), room acoustics, etc, coming from headphones like the HE6's. There by giving you the illusion of great depth and a 3D surround effect, to the point it becomes difficult to tell if you are using headphones or not, except for the fact you can feel the headphone on your head.


With a half decent recording my Omega 2s are able to easily disappear as obvious sound sources over my left and right ears. Most dynamic phones sound like various shades of this: O--O a sort of stretched infinity symbol with a kind of semi-globe shaped soundstage around either ear, and a largely flat center image inside the head. The Omega 2 doesn't have that obvious headphone sound. Close your eyes and its possible to fool yourself into thinking you're listening to speakers in a small room. The sound is easily better than the nearfield monitors I have on my desk.

 

post #101 of 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveBSC View Post




With a half decent recording my Omega 2s are able to easily disappear as obvious sound sources over my left and right ears. Most dynamic phones sound like various shades of this: O--O a sort of stretched infinity symbol with a kind of semi-globe shaped soundstage around either ear, and a largely flat center image inside the head. The Omega 2 doesn't have that obvious headphone sound. Close your eyes and its possible to fool yourself into thinking you're listening to speakers in a small room. The sound is easily better than the nearfield monitors I have on my desk.

 


Yes I have heard the Stax system's and they also will archive a wonderful sound-stage and everything you may want from a headphone. But what I am talking about just isn't headphones, its a full system.

 

post #102 of 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by Head Injury View Post


Better how? Subjectively, someone could prefer just about any dynamic to an electrostatic if they don't like electrostatics.

 

I'd say at the very least the top tier Stax are overrated for their price. These days it seems ridiculous to charge $5000 for a headphone when there are so many good $1000-1500 performers, even if you like the Stax better.


I don't know about the 009 (it sounds better than anything i've owned or heard) but incidentally i was posting this in another thread: http://www.head-fi.org/t/285743/goldmund-v-s-pioneer . You can't say its overpriced when looking at the manufacturing cost in Switzerland and owners might love the sound too but, just from an engineering perspective, this kind of rebadging is overrated.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elysian View Post

Yes, but as an unfortunate consequence of that, very few people here have significant experience living with an electrostat setup.  Most people I see criticizing electrostats either only demoed them for 5-20 minutes, or are operating off of hearsay, but feel qualified to argue the merits of HD800 vs O2 to hell and back.

 

Based purely upon summit-fi regulars, there seem to be few people here who actually have lived with various dynamic and electrostatic setups, and experimented with numerous chains.

 

With some of the comments on the O2 here, you'd think Stax made an inappropriate pass at a lot of mothers.


So well said, I had to quote. Let's not mix inaccessibility with overrattedness ...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redcarmoose View Post

http://hotronica.com/bang-and-olufsen-headphones/

 

 

 

I have always looked at Bose as the new Bang and Olufsen.  Overrated and pretty.

 

 

 

 

Real high end? I guess any Clearaudio Cartridge that comes close to 12K is starting to get in the overrated area. I used to think Nagra was overrated until I studied how some stuff was built then I was amazed. Maybe a lot of high end is well made if you start to really study how it's built. I think that some stuff actually takes an education just to understand what your looking at.

 

 

Clearaudio+Goldfinger+Phono+Cartridge+[large+view].jpeg


Could this be another example of bling bling driven design?
post #103 of 285


I have heard many of the Soundlabs, the A1, A3, and some others. The DD OTL Acoustats are much better. If someone would design a DD OTL amp for the Soundlabs, I am sure they would match or beat the Acoustats. Again, it is all in the transformer that causes the lost of information.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveBSC View Post




Curious, have you heard the TOTL Soundlabs? I'm really not a huge fan of most modern stat speakers, but I think those are very, very good, provided you can fit them in your room.

 



 

post #104 of 285

I'd like to put a word in to defend the B&W 683. I think they provide good value for money sonically if you take care when pairing them with an amp (sound varying considerably depending on what you plug them into). I don't know if they are "perfect" speakers for the price, but I have heard worse things costing similar money (like Klipsch floorstanders). Also, they have terrific looks if you're into this styling, which is actual value when buying furniture. So there. :)

post #105 of 285
Being new to high end audio, I'd like to put in a word for Bose being overrated. I'm indian and every single indian thinks that bose is the best of the best. That is because there is a 30-300% markup on crap bose makes that is sold in india. I'm in america now but family members come over here, do well, and want to buy a 5.1 bose system for their house because that is part of "the dream".

I'll admit I got caught up in all that too. My parents have a bose home theater system and it DOES sound nice. until you hear the price tag they paid for it or try to listen to actual music. I tried listening to music in 2.1 mode and Disco mode (stereo x2) and the sound quality was abysmal. Those speakers are great, yes, but only for their loudness, given their tiny size, and for movies/explosions. My parents babied the speakers so they've lasted us since 1997, and they've more than gotten their money's worth from them. Considering they dont buy/rent dvd/bluray anymore and the terrible compression that ATT Uverse service uses, theres no point in having a 5.1 speaker system anyways.

I used to have Koss Sparkplugs. I was looking for headphones that were just plain loud because my PSP had no ability to pump out a decent volume, and neither did (does) ipod classic. Then I went to Creative EP 630's. I was looking at sennheiser's earbuds (i think the cx 80 or 880) but the price of those was much higher and they looked exactly like the creatives so I was not about to spend money on them. I instead went with Bose On Ears for 160 bucks. I thought I was in audio heaven when actually all they did was improve the bass response of the 30 dollar creatives I had. There was slightly more detail and slightly more treble detail also.

Then after reading this site and using my bose into the ground, I got the monster turbines (regular). I was blown away that sound quality like that even existed. Now i'm saving up for either ATH M50 or some really really expensive pair of over ears. The m50's seem to have the sound quality and characteristics i'm looking for but I wont know until I try some true neutral phones like the hd 800s or similar. Also looking into 1964 ears triple driver customs.

the monsters suck too for the price at which they are sold. I get nearly the same sound quality from m11p+ by Meelec. The m11's have somewhat fatigueing highs compared to the monsters but the monsters have such terrible build quality issues (driver flex like a mofo, casing falls apart) that they are hardly worth 180 bucks retail price. If I paid a dime over 70 for them id be extremely upset.
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