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Koss Pro DJ 100 - The Budget King - Page 104

post #1546 of 2251
Thread Starter 

Totally addicted to the TBSE with these new modded Pearstone pads. That was even with just the Ipod Touch 2G with LOD to amp. I think the Schiit Magni may very well be my favorite amp for the DJ100/TBSE. It's just so crystal clear sounding with the headphone.

 

Seriously I'm doing some major A/B checks between my DJ100 with modded Pearstone pads and the HD-650 and there is not much difference and they both have the same amount of warmth. Same amounts of bass (DJ100 has a little more forward low-bass). Treble is just so similar. Obviously the DJ100 has more with stock or M50 pads. No way the DJ100 can compete when just from a portable setup.

 

When switching to the HD-650, the mids are a bit less forward and "softer" sounding. I don't know if that makes sense.They're just not as clear, but still good. The HD-650's soundstage is a little more airy. TBSE has better bass and I don't mean more.

 

After listening to the Ipod Touch to amp nearly all day it's now much easier to spot the differences between it and the ODAC. With the ODAC there much better imaging and a larger soundstage. The DJ100 is much more spacious sounding, but not like my Q701. No portable source can ever do compare to the ODAC in making the DJ100 sound almost like an open headphone.

 

I love how with the ODAC it gets all the spacing right with all the placement of the vocal and instruments. Right now I'm listening to some live Jpop with female vocals and it sounds like she's on stage and her vocals are quite distant. Just the way it's supposed to be IN the recording. I mean it's almost like pinpoint accuracy like my old K601. The HD-650 is just as good when it comes to this.

 

With recordings with a good soundstage, the Ipod Touch just can't compete with the ODAC.

 

I think when I move and have more money I'm going to get the Schiit Asgard 2 or the Lyr. I didn't like the Asgard 1, but maybe the 2nd will be OK. I'm worried I won't like the Lyr, but it has a 15 day trial or so.

 

BTW I noticed yesterday the 598's mids are much more forward than those of the 598. Maybe it was the recording or something...my DJ100/TBSE always improves or worsens with every single thing. About the same as my HD-650 and Q701. It's nuts to think this since it's only a $50 headphone after all biggrin.gif

 

EDIT: It's amazing how many recordings have bloated bass IN the recording. Ugh. I heard some U2 song and it was totally ruined by this. I can't see how they'd let that pass. For reference I do check with other headphones.


Edited by tdockweiler - 2/16/13 at 7:52pm
post #1547 of 2251

Trying to understand some of the things you have written about these headphones because i am interested in purchasing them. What do you think about these headphones without an amp? Also, do they break easily or are they solid? Portability? Comparison with the Audiotechnica m50s? Or Vmoda m80s?  Or DJ headphones? And most importantly what do you think about their comfort? Thanks. I tried to read your review on front page but i get confused. 

post #1548 of 2251

I have both the DJ100s and the M-80s.  They are different beasts, but both work well without a dedicated amp.  I'd summarize the difference as the M-80s have more lower end bass and more rolled off treble.  Their sound is fuller, but also a little more cramped.  The DJ100s are a little more open sounding and have better mids.  However, the bass doesn't extend as deep and they have a papery quality to their sound.

 

I like them both and use both frequently.

post #1549 of 2251

tried hm5 pads vs m50 pads on my pro dj200 today. like the m50 pads better, as they give more soundstage depth and a more open sounding to them. highs are more crisp. hm5 pads are slightly more comfortable though.

post #1550 of 2251
Thread Starter 

Was up all night again listening to the DJ100/TBSE with modded Pearstone pads. Didn't want to sleep. Pretty amazing with Magni and even Ipod Touch 2G (docked for Line Out).

I can't understand why the soundstage is so much larger. Makes no sense to me at all. With so many songs it feels like an open headphone at times, but more so with the ODAC. With the stock pads you don't get this as much and everything is more up-front.

 

What will fool people is that some things sound more distant, but it's 100% the recording. With stock pads there seems to be a little less space between all the different instruments and sounds. How far away the vocals are depends on the recording. I can imagine someone being fooled into thinking it's recessed mids or something. Some vocals sound like they're 5 foot away from the listening position. Others are right in your face (if it's that way in the recording). Maybe the difference is that the M50 and Pearstone pads put your ears VERY slightly further away from the driver. I think these two pads also give you a better seal than stock. That's probably very important.

 

I had a funny thing happen..I was playing Dark Souls with my TBSE and the new pads. It sounded really hollow and awkward. On other headphones it was fine and sounded OK. Turns out I forgot to realize I was inside a square building made out of brick and I was just hearing the echos and what it would really sound like in this room. It wasn't cup resonance or anything like that. I walk outside into an open area and it's totally different.

 

I've noticed one thing similar on the Pearstone pads that are on the M50 pads! There is a foam backing on the pads! It doesn't muffle the sound but seems to smooth over everything. No way of knowing for sure but it seems like it.

 

One thing someone could do is take some acoustic foam (like as found on the K240 Studio etc) and place it over the driver with stock pads in place.

 

I bet now I might be able to make the DT-250 pads work by putting holes inside of them just like on the M50. I can't remember if the DT-250 pads came with those foam circles, but DT-250 pads sounded awful IMO.

 

There also HAS to be a way to mod the SRH-940 pads to have good bass on the DJ100. No such luck..

 

So right now the TBSE with Pearstone pads (modded) sounds like a more energetic and fun HD-650. Just as balanced, but clearer and more detailed. Both of them are very accurate to the recording and don't color it too much. I A/Bed them for an hour and there isn't any radical difference. Obviously the HD-650 is more airy and spacious sounding. I never would have imagined i'd like a headphone that's warmer than the HD-650. The DJ100 with modded Pearstone pads is, but only slightly. Stock DJ100..don't think so.

 

BTW for some reason M50 pads are best for the DJ100 for portable use. It makes the DJ100 sound less congested with warmer portable devices like the Clip+. The DJ100 never sounds congested with a good budget desktop amp/dac. I kept wondering why the DJ100 sounded amazing unamped with the Clip+ with M50 pads, but not so good with stock pads. My idea was the M50 pads reduced the warmth very slightly and increased the treble a tad.

 

If you have an Ipod Touch with a LOD cable or dock and love the DJ100 you HAVE to try the Magni with it.

 

It's hard to want to suggest someone buy Pearstone pads for their DJ100 and then poke holes into them to make it sound better biggrin.gif The pads also get more comfortable after a few days and are less scratchy. I only made 4 holes on the inside of each pad. Size of an eraser head. You might be ok with the amount of warmth as long as you use very transparent gear that's not warm or bassy. For me stock Pearstone pads were TOO warm.

 

EDIT:

 

IMO Pearstone pads (modded) seem better than M50 pads, but I never did any A/B comparisons. The extra warmth is addicting. It's not so much to annoy me or transform the DJ100 into something it's not.

I think the soundstage SEEMS a tad smaller than those of the M50 pads (based on memory), but I think this is only due to the extra warmth. Whenever a headphone is made warmer, it magically seems like the soundstage got smaller!


Edited by tdockweiler - 2/18/13 at 9:43am
post #1551 of 2251

Tdockweiler, I certainly respect your enthusiasm for this hobby and comment your willingness to post and share.  But, time and time again, you seem to have fallen victim to expectation bias.  So many of your posts and claims, to me, are just posts about all these amazing changes you experience whenever you make a subtle change to your gear.  Clearly, it's expectation bias.

 

But, that's the fun of this hobby.  We get lost in the music and have more fun because we want to have more fun.  There's something to say about that.


Edited by hodgjy - 2/18/13 at 9:53am
post #1552 of 2251

I just don't like the idea of putting oval pads on round headphones. They look a bit weird.

 

Has anyone found actual round earpads that work well? Maybe the 750dj?

post #1553 of 2251

Some of his posts read a bit weird regardless of the accuracy of his findings, hodgjy, like he'll say something then quickly contradict himself on purpose as to hedge his bets on what he's stating or something? Maybe I just don't get the writing style... I guess it's that stream of consciousness thing a lot of posters seem to do so, he's hardly alone.

 

No offense tdoc, I appreciate the enthusiasm and the effort you've put into playing around w/the DJ100 tho, even tho it's mostly lost on me.

 

BTW for a second there I actually thought you were referring to the echos of the room you were sitting in with that last post tdoc. I'm like "wait what? echos from a headphone? thru closed cups?!" then I realized you meant the room you were standing in WITHIN the game, hah. Pretty cool that the game engine and headphones were able to accurately reproduce that effect as to make you do a double take.


Edited by Impulse - 2/18/13 at 10:53am
post #1554 of 2251
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hodgjy View Post

Tdockweiler, I certainly respect your enthusiasm for this hobby and comment your willingness to post and share.  But, time and time again, you seem to have fallen victim to expectation bias.  So many of your posts and claims, to me, are just posts about all these amazing changes you experience whenever you make a subtle change to your gear.  Clearly, it's expectation bias.

 

But, that's the fun of this hobby.  We get lost in the music and have more fun because we want to have more fun.  There's something to say about that.


Oh give me a break..

 

Please tell me where I said some pads magically transform this headphone into something that's 10x better. I know my enthusiasm makes it sound that way.

 

I really do think stock pads really limit the sound of this headphone and what it's capable of. I don't know if you've tried other pads for the DJ100 or not. It really is a dramatic difference and not exactly subtle.

 

The only "amazing" changes the DJ100 has seen are when I switched from my HRT MSII to the ODAC and then again when I took someone's advice and tried the M50 pads. Ok and now with these new pads. I won't lie. We'll know for sure if I still have these pads on for months. I have no doubts.

 

FYI I've held off on my praise of different pads until I've used them for a very long time. I actually didn't even review the DJ100 until I had used the M50 pads on them for at least 6 months.

 

Since modding the Pearstone pads I've given them at least 12 hours of use. People can feel free to ignore my posts and try whatever pads they want.

 

Also... one last thing and I know you might disagree here and that's OK. Based on my experiences and with MY setup, the DJ100's sound changes more with every single change than even my HD-650 and Q701. In fact, I never knew my surge protector was degrading my Headphone Amps sound quality until I heard it on the DJ100! I'm now using one with TVS-diodes. It's due to using a MOV based surge protector and is not simply expectation bias. The degraded audio occurs on my Micro Amp and Magni. Straight to the wall would always result in better sound.

 

Oh and I did cut holes in my Pearstone pads, so calling that possible expectation bias is understandable. I just know for a fact that the Pearstone pads sat in my closet for a year because they made the DJ100 too warm. If you would like, I will buy another pair and do A/B experiments to confirm my results for you biggrin.gif

 

Trust me, i've had the DJ100 for over 3 years so I know none of this is expectation bias. I've put more use on this thing than any other headphone (i've had 7 pairs and I know that's NUTS!). I know when the DJ100 is a bit "off". Now modding the inside of the cups..that's another story. Sometimes it sounded great for awhile and then a week later I'd remove all mods. Those changes are ultra subtle and in the end not really worth it.

 

So if you haven't tried the DJ100 with different pads, you should!! I wish you could hear what this one sounds like with the same pads i'm using. I bet the Asgard is fairly similar with the DJ100 as the Magni. Who knows..I still need to try the DJ100 with the Asgard 2 or Lyr.

 

I bet the DJ100 with the Lyr and Bifrost will be a MASSIVE UPGRADE. By my estimates about a 99% improvement in sound quality normal_smile%20.gif

 

I think i'll probably be the first person on Head-Fi to buy a $450 amp for a $55 headphone!

post #1555 of 2251
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Impulse View Post

Some of his posts read a bit weird regardless of the accuracy of his findings, hodgjy, like he'll say something then quickly contradict himself on purpose as to hedge his bets on what he's stating or something? Maybe I just don't get the writing style... I guess it's that stream of consciousness thing a lot of posters seem to do so, he's hardly alone.

 

No offense tdoc, I appreciate the enthusiasm and the effort you've put into playing around w/the DJ100 tho, even tho it's mostly lost on me.

 

BTW for a second there I actually thought you were referring to the echos of the room you were sitting in with that last post tdoc. I'm like "wait what? echos from a headphone? thru closed cups?!" then I realized you meant the room you were standing in WITHIN the game, hah. Pretty cool that the game engine and headphones were able to accurately reproduce that effect as to make you do a double take.

 

Sometimes I think I type too much and it's too randomly weird. I love talking about this headphone, so some of my posts are information overload and a bit overkill. Heck, just look at my review! It's like 200 pages!

Best advice I can give is to take everything I say with a grain of salt and try things out for yourself. I'm not trying to prove anything to anyone, so if my findings are not accurate to someone, then that's fine.

There's still plenty of people out there who think the DJ100 100% does not need an amp. I just choose to use a desktop amp and DAC because I think it benefits from them and sounds best.

I could make a list a mile long of the differences between a Clip+ and my Magni and ODAC.

 

I pretty much will post what I'm hearing or any changes that are audible. People can ignore them if they want. Nobody will hear any setup in the same way to begin with..

 

Of course nobody here is going to believe this non-sense about how I think the DJ100 is as good as the HD-650 (if not better) on the same setup. It's not preferences and I love both headphones.

 

I think overall I'm just trying to squeeze the last bit of audio quality out of this headphone. After 3 years it's nice to find even one tiny thing that can do this.

post #1556 of 2251

I kind of agree with the stock pads almost being mediocre depending on how they happen to settle on your head... They're shallow and not very conforming, I don't find them uncomfortable per se but I can see how they'd often fail to create a solid seal, etc. ('specially w/eyeglasses)

 

Now, the extent to which different pads can really improve matters and how worthwhile it is for $55-80 headphones, that's another matter. Personally I wouldn't suggest someone buy them with the expectation of spending another $15+ on pads that don't even fit seamlessly, but maybe I'm just being silly about aesthetics or whatever. Some people aren't really looking to use these as portables so that'd be irrelevant to them.

post #1557 of 2251
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Impulse View Post

I kind of agree with the stock pads almost being mediocre depending on how they happen to settle on your head... They're shallow and not very conforming, I don't find them uncomfortable per se but I can see how they'd often fail to create a solid seal, etc. ('specially w/eyeglasses)

 

Now, the extent to which different pads can really improve matters and how worthwhile it is for $55-80 headphones, that's another matter. Personally I wouldn't suggest someone buy them with the expectation of spending another $15+ on pads that don't even fit seamlessly, but maybe I'm just being silly about aesthetics or whatever. Some people aren't really looking to use these as portables so that'd be irrelevant to them.

 

The big mystery for me is figuring out why the stock pads sound a bit worse than M50 or Pearstone pads. I mean they're not terrible at all, but they do give you a reduced soundstage slightly.

The comfort on the stock pads is good for me as long as they're broken in. It makes no sense but they do get more comfortable after a few weeks and they can be stretched. I had this same experience with my KRK KNS-6400. The stock pads were horribly uncomfortable the first day (they're pleather).

 

I think the slightly reduced sound quality is due to them not being very deep, a poor seal and maybe lacking that foam to smooth over the sound. Even foam can make a headphone sound warmer. I didn't realize this until I tried placing foam inside the M40 pads.

 

Oval pads do look a bit goofy, but I don't care about this much and I don't wear them in public. I just have a feeling that oval pads might sound better than round pads (on the DJ100). What I'd like to know is if foam inside round pads could get them to sound as good as M50 or Pearstone pads.

 

Stuffing some foam in the edges of the stock pads make them sound a little better, but there's more to it I think. I think foam over the driver and something to lift the edges of the stock pads might make it sound identical to M50 pads.

post #1558 of 2251

Biggest thing with the pads is the seal.  Bottom line. The stock pads aren't bad but they don't have the best seal. The M50 pads on the other hand, my ears fit perfect into the " Oval" and seal perfectly around my ears/head.  It has way less room for sound to escape.  It has a tighter chamber which makes the music more pleasing!!

 They really do sound much better then the stock pads.

It's just like I said posts back.  The TBSE is a brighter headphone, so Personally I don't like the M50 on that set, But on the DJ100 they work fantastic.  The DJ100 has more bass out of the box but less brightness. With the M50 pads it add the extra brightness that the TBSE has but maintains the deeper/harder Bass that the DJ100 already has over the TBSE.

 

 It just like people who say the 400 Sennheiser series are not good.  With the simple Bass hole mod they have a harder/deeper and tighter Bass then the DT770, without the sucked out mids and sizzle Treble. But people just put them on and say Blah!!!   They are just Blah in stock form, Open one hole in the tuning ports on the back chamber and the drivers have room to breathe.  The 439 with one hole opened will give MANY cans a run for the $, They are just about the same level as the HD600 and at only $50...

post #1559 of 2251
Quote:
Originally Posted by Impulse View Post

I kind of agree with the stock pads almost being mediocre depending on how they happen to settle on your head... They're shallow and not very conforming, I don't find them uncomfortable per se but I can see how they'd often fail to create a solid seal, etc. ('specially w/eyeglasses)

 

Now, the extent to which different pads can really improve matters and how worthwhile it is for $55-80 headphones, that's another matter. Personally I wouldn't suggest someone buy them with the expectation of spending another $15+ on pads that don't even fit seamlessly, but maybe I'm just being silly about aesthetics or whatever. Some people aren't really looking to use these as portables so that'd be irrelevant to them.


Fit pretty seamless to me, Don't buy cheap Chinese knockoffs. The " Original M50's" cost $20 or over!!

post #1560 of 2251
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Magicman74 View Post

Biggest thing with the pads is the seal.  Bottom line. The stock pads aren't bad but they don't have the best seal. The M50 pads on the other hand, my ears fit perfect into the " Oval" and seal perfectly around my ears/head.  It has way less room for sound to escape.  It has a tighter chamber which makes the music more pleasing!!

 They really do sound much better then the stock pads.

It's just like I said posts back.  The TBSE is a brighter headphone, so Personally I don't like the M50 on that set, But on the DJ100 they work fantastic.  The DJ100 has more bass out of the box but less brightness. With the M50 pads it add the extra brightness that the TBSE has but maintains the deeper/harder Bass that the DJ100 already has over the TBSE.

 

 It just like people who say the 400 Sennheiser series are not good.  With the simple Bass hole mod they have a harder/deeper and tighter Bass then the DT770, without the sucked out mids and sizzle Treble. But people just put them on and say Blah!!!   They are just Blah in stock form, Open one hole in the tuning ports on the back chamber and the drivers have room to breathe.  The 439 with one hole opened will give MANY cans a run for the $, They are just about the same level as the HD600 and at only $50...

 

Have you ever had a chance to take a peek inside the cups of your  DJ100?

My idea as to why there is a slight variation in the sounds is due to the holes being drilled differently. On my TBSE they're drilled straight down to the aluminum. On my old DJ100's they're not drilled down that far.

Someone posted a picture of a more recent pair of DJ100s and they were drilled the same way. It's a bunch of holes directly behind the driver.

 

Now I have no 100% confirmation if this would alter the sound in any way, but it's possible. My idea is that the more room (air) inside the cups, the more treble you get. Maybe it helps cut down on resonance or something.

 

I want to get a pair and drill more holes. I bought another TBSE but returned it without opening it.

 

I never had a TBSE and a DJ100 at the same time, but the TBSE was so similar sounding to my DJ100 that there was no way to know for sure without an A/B. I did for awhile think it sounded a bit clearer, but figured it was just my imagination there.

 

My guess is that your DJ100 has no holes drilled down to the aluminum and this could alter the sound very very slightly.

 

Everything else inside appears to be identical.

 

Of course there could be something else different..

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