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Fostex TH900 Impressions & Discussion Thread - Page 44

post #646 of 7451

Another thing that bugs me is the box.

Foam inserts for glossy lacquer? How much would a bit of silk have cost extra?

post #647 of 7451
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleheadMay View Post

Another thing that bugs me is the box.

Foam inserts for glossy lacquer? How much would a bit of silk have cost extra?

 

 

FWIW, the Stax SR-007 comes with even cheaper foam inserts and no silk. Same with the SR-009. And Edition 10. And Edition 8. And HE-6. And H2+. And ERGO AMT. Hell, I don't think the Qualia even had foam.

post #648 of 7451
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleheadMay View Post

Nice vid Driver8, haven't seen any video reviews here but Jude's and I must say it's refreshing.

Oh and two of my cats were suddenly very interested in your video as well.  ;)

 

Jude's video review? where :P

 

I thought he only had made a Head-Fi photo album about it, and about his unboxing.

post #649 of 7451
Quote:
Originally Posted by devouringone3 View Post

 

Maybe you absolutely need to insert the quarter inch plug into the Fostex "logoed" holder (joining the two ends of the shaped metal bar that is the stand) at the base and behind, to act as a crucial counter-weight? I still think such a flimsy stand is stupid and useless and a waste of space inside the box of the TH900, but maybe it was designed so extremely peculiarly and precisely (it's a Japanese thing, so it's very possible) that you absolutely need to put the plug of the headphone in its place, for the stand to "work".

 

For illustration, this would be what is to not be done:

 

<photo clipped>

 

And rolling the cable around the circle base before inserting the plug?

 

After that I won't be insisting anymore on trying to save that silly stand.

 

Phew!

 

Jude's video review? where :P

 

I thought he only had made a Head-Fi photo album about it, and about his unboxing.

 

I didn't realize that hole in the stand's base was for the plug. I'll try it later, see how much of a difference it makes. As represented in the photo above (without the plug in), that stand is (as you've all pointed out) not exactly the Rock of Gibraltar. I do not use that stand. Who knows...maybe plugging the headphone in will make a big difference, in terms of balance. I'm not betting on that, though.

 

I haven't done a video of the TH-900 yet. If you're wondering what I think of it, I love it, for many of the very same reasons MuppetFace does.

 

If plugging the plug into the stand somehow transforms it, I'll let y'all know. Again, I'm not counting on it.

post #650 of 7451
Quote:
Originally Posted by devouringone3 View Post

 

Jude's video review? where :P

 

I thought he only had made a Head-Fi photo album about it, and about his unboxing.

 

I meant video reviews in general, not about the TH900. I was referring to HFTV.

post #651 of 7451

About the stand...

 

I tried wrapping the cable around the base and plugging in the adapter into the fostex label, while it stands its still rather flimsy and it just doesn't look good (but it does stand - the cable is hefty enough to give some weight to the base).

 

On the other hand, with the cable wrapped at the bass and the headphones in place it really looks like I took a wire hanger and some elbow grease to make this thing, like I said before it doesn't do these 'works of art' justice. While its a miss, I wasn't buying the TH900 for its headphone stand biggrin.gif so I can live without it..

 

Also, I hear AppleheadMay's disappointment with the padding, I was initially disappointed too, only because the D7000s looked so lush in their box with all that silk wink.gif, but as MF pointed out, lots of high-end'ers come with similar types of packaging (so no biggie, box is outa sight outa mind right now anyways).


Edited by Ahzari - 5/11/12 at 6:49pm
post #652 of 7451

The Stax headphone stand is perfect for the Fostex.

post #653 of 7451
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgs9200m View Post

The Stax headphone stand is perfect for the Fostex.

 

TH900 is worthy enough to crown the STAX stand, in m opinion :P.

 

SR009 might be less prone to micro-scratches than TH900 so foam is, adequate enough, I'd think. TH900 is a very fine and sensible piece gear, it's visually "enriched" with silver and bordeaux red colored Urushi lacquer (it's not really functional or anything, only for aesthetics). On the other hand a SR009 is a blunt object you could use to knock out an aggressor from behind (I would personally put my SR009 on the floor gently, and then jump at the back of my aggressor and strangle him, with more fighting and risks), and I bet that the headphone wouldn't be altered so much after a hit.

 

But all in all I agree that the TH900 could have arrived in a soft-cloth surrounding, instead of a more "harsh" material like that of this plastic bag:

900x900px-LL-189ad002_DSC_9911.jpeg

(those are Jude's by the way, they are among the first pictures of this headphone available on the internet)

post #654 of 7451

But the Fostex headphone stand is perfect for my old Grado RS1s (they are featherweight and don't imbalance the stand; the Fostex phones are just plain way to heavy for it).

post #655 of 7451
Quote:
Originally Posted by MuppetFace View Post

 

 

FWIW, the Stax SR-007 comes with even cheaper foam inserts and no silk. Same with the SR-009. And Edition 10. And Edition 8. And HE-6. And H2+. And ERGO AMT. Hell, I don't think the Qualia even had foam.

 

The Rutheniums and the Palladiums don't come in foam.  The carrying pouch they come with is legitimately one of my favorite pack-in accessories of any headphone, though.

post #656 of 7451

Now that package is just sad. = ( For example ATH-W3000ANV was packed much more nicely and I think it's an appropriate compare in many aspects.

 

Still interested in these though, but if I'd end up finding them less pleasing than my current phones...


Edited by TheOtus - 5/12/12 at 2:02am
post #657 of 7451
Thread Starter 

You can always buy a swatch of silk for next to nothing and stick it in there.

 

Aesthetics and presentation are somewhat important to me, especially as I approach this hobby from the angle of collecting just as much as I do music listening. Headphone design is an artform in my opinion, and this extends to the way they're packaged, sure. However I will say that compared to a lot of flagships and high-end headphones, the packaging on the TH900 isn't that bad.

 

Some companies use silk: Audez'e, Audio-Technica, Denon, Sennheiser, Sony 

 

Some companies don't: AKG, Beyerdynamic, Grado, HiFiMan, Koss, Precide, Shure, Stax, TakeT, Ultrasone

 

It just doesn't bother me at all, and while the package is minimalistic, it actually functions quite well for storage and protecting the headphones.

post #658 of 7451

What you think MuppetFace, if the most important aspects to me in the ATH-W3000ANV are the way vocals, electric guitar and treble are presented, would it be likely that TH900 would top them?

post #659 of 7451

Too early for a review per se, so just a few musings.

 

Now, I am not much for talking about stuff other than SQ, but the "headphone stand" is strictly from hunger. In fact, I think it is worse than useless, it is a net negative. In addition to the slight problem that it can fall over, damaging your circa $2000 phones (!), the storage box ends up bigger and shipping potentially more costly for essentially nothing. Reminds me of a company I worked for many years ago that made a big deal about a "raise" that turned out to be 5 cents/hour. I told them to keep it, they obviously needed it more than I did and I felt less insulted that way. rolleyes.gif Note to Fostex, if you can't include a stand worthy of the product, please don't bother. Throw the stand out, glue a piece of silk to the inner box foam and we'll call it even. Anyway...

 

Otherwise, the phones are nice to look at and nicely made (LOL).

 

I had intended to do a comparison to some other phones I own/owned, but found it hard to do. These are so facinating I just wanted to spend my somewhat limited listening time just on them. The TH900 are pretty much free of any egregious colorations and give a quite clear sonic picture. They don't have the degree of out of head image that some of the best of it's competitors do (say, the HD-800), but a natural headphone-centric image. Like the HD-800, they have a front-of-hall perspective, but I must say they do it with a bit less insistance and a bit more naturalness in the treble than the Sennheisers. Bass/midbass is slightly forward, but pleasantly and subtly so and doesn't seem to obscure any other range. In fact, detail and noise floor seems excellent overall, not from the "hey, dig that detail" school, but just placed there for you to appreciate when doing so would enhance the musical experience.

 

In fact, I would say the design brief of these phones must have been "to enhance the musical experience". Not that they aren't reasonably close to some notion of neutrality (whatever your definition of that may be), but that they aren't slaves to that notion. I am generally not too enamored with the "boutique balance" design school of headphones intended to flatter some particular style of music or to cater to a particular taste in sound, but I can admire it where it is done well and for the right reasons. Here, the tuning is subtle and done with almost exquisite taste leaving even a mean ol' reviewer like myself in admiration.

 

When I buy a pair of headphones, I always do so with the idea that if they don't please I can return them or sell them on to someone else who may appreciate them more than I do. My intent is not to feel boxed in by a new purchase, that having spent the money I can't afford to not like them. So far, the TH900 are justifying their high cost. Value is, of course, a subjective issue. My view is that the most valuable commodity a person has is time and that life is too short to listen to mediocre headphones. So a phone that doesn't produce at a high level is a bad value no matter how cheap it is. The TH900 delivers at a high level, so it can be consider a good value by that measure.

 

Kevin

post #660 of 7451
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOtus View Post

What you think MuppetFace, if the most important aspects to me in the ATH-W3000ANV are the way vocals, electric guitar and treble are presented, would it be likely that TH900 would top them?

 

Hard to say.

 

If you like the specific coloration of vocals on the W3000ANV, then no, the TH900 isn't going to be too similar. The midrange on the TH900 is clearer and more transparent sounding by comparison, though it still has a certain special quality to it like the W3000ANV, just different. For me the effect of the W3000ANV here is somewhat akin to a filter, that "antique hue" I'm always on about when I mention it. To my ears it's more sultry, romantic, ambient, hypnotic, and heavy-lidded. Like sitting in a smoke filled nightclub or an opium den. The TH900's presentation of vocals on the other hand sounds more lifelike, more alert and awake, refreshing, sincere, full-bodied, and most importantly to me it has a sense of presence that makes the W3000ANV sound a bit thin and shallow by comparison.

 

Neither one is better than the other for me per se, and both suit different moods. Most of the time however I prefer the TH900. It's just more satisfying with a wider range of music for me. I have to be in the right mood to choose the W3000ANV over the TH900, but when I am in the right mood, it's hard to beat.

 

As far as treble goes, I prefer the TH900 hands down, but then I tend to prefer less bright and "sparkly" top ends. The W3000ANV isn't overly bright to me, but it is brighter than the TH900 somewhat. I feel the upper registers are closer to neutral on the TH900 than W3000ANV. In both cases the treble is clear, crisp, detailed, exciting and involving. I don't think the TH900 loses out by being more restrained in this regard, but some may like the little bit of extra bite that the W3000ANV has up top perhaps.

 

This is sort of an oversimplification, but for me it comes down to this: I'm of the opinion that in most technical aspects and in presentation the TH900 handily bests the W3000ANV, however the W3000ANV has a very specific coloration that the TH900 (and most other headphones) do not reproduce, so if you're looking for that coloration in particular, the TH900 isn't going to replace it.

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