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post #2881 of 12183
Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post

You're pretty funny. Thanks for the new info I had no idea such flawless arguments were out there. Can you recommend me a amp that can do exactly 85 decibles for the HE-500? I don't believe in any headroom and anyone who says otherwise doesn't understand science and math. I listen around 75db~85db max so I don't need anything more than that. Oh wait... I think my ipod might do this. Problem solved! Selling all my useless gear now. Just awesome. It's definitely loud enough, which is the whole point of amps, to make things loud.


Hey, don't let facts get in the way wink.gif

 

But seriously, I'm just trying to help out. The Asgard packs sufficient punch to take the HE-500 beyond painful volumes. The Lyr certainly has enough to drive the HE-500 as well, I'm not denying that. All I'm saying is that if you have an Asgard, then you can already drive the HE-500 to ear damaging levels. Therefore, loudness is not the reason to get a Lyr. Lyr would offer a different, customizable, sonic quality, and that is a perfectly valid reason to get one. biggrin.gif

If you were talking about the HE-6's, the story would be different. L3000.gif



Why don't you look at what I've got? I've got a Modi (1.5V rms i.e. +3.5 dB)+ Magni (14dB gain) and HD280pro (114dB/V sensitivity) and these are loud at the full software volume and the minimal pot setting that is still channel balanced (about 9 o'clock ~ -35dB). If you add it up, that's 114+14+3.5 - 35dB = 96.5 dB rms at the minimum pot setting and at full software volume.

If you wanna be practical about it, I use replay gain which sets the rms volume at -14dB from full scale. That gives me a minimum listening volume of 82.5 rms, which is right at the edge of hearing loss for long term exposure. I'm not asking anybody to listen at 85dB rms MAX. It's totally fine to have an amp that can get too loud. The only thing is, now you have no useable range on your volume pot, or you have to settle for using software volume control to get a reasonable useful range out of your volume pot.

 

If you've got a 2V DAC (ie Bifrost ie +6dB)), an Asgard( +16.5dB), and an HE500 (102dB/V), you'll get 126.5dB SPL at max volume. Add replay gain and you're sill in excess of 112 dB SPL rms! 

 

I stand by the fact that the Asgard can get HE-500's to be really loud.

 

Cheers!

 

PS. check the math for the Asgard configuration and see if you can identify a limitation---there's a subtlety there. wink.gif

post #2882 of 12183
Quote:
Originally Posted by ab initio View Post

 

I stand by the fact that the Asgard can get HE-500's to be really loud.

 

Cheers!

Oh no doubt. It gets crazy loud with the Magni as well, and also is loud enough on an ipod. I guess my point is that you need to start experiencing higher end amps because once you do you'll put away your numbers and wonder why you're keep hearing improvements. You'll one day realize it's not about loudness, which I know sounds odd to you because you've been zombie brainwashed by psuedo science and engineering by that moron who is banned and operates his own blog. Having almost infinite headroom is nice/wanted because the amp operates at close to idle and is the most linear as possible. You want overkill headroom if at all possible, especially with planars. I think those numbers and forumlas are for ideal conditions and does not accurately simiulate how the driver will react under a lot of stress/load when actual complex music is playing instead of test tone bursts to collect data.

 

*also consider that the HE-500 drivers have been measured as low as 86 decible efficiency instead of 89 and 60 ohms insteadof 38ohms, depending on product variation. So yeah having insane headroom is nice and never unnecessary for planars. The new Schiit Rag will be putting out 9+ Watts into 50 ohms and I'm excited about that. According to your monkey formulas not even 1/100th of this is necessary, so those formulas are not giving us a complete picture. There are other variables to driving headphones.

 

*Also to be clear I think the Magni does an admirable job of driving the HE-500. Not the best but certainly more than ok and a great value of an amp.


Edited by M-13 - 7/25/13 at 3:08pm
post #2883 of 12183
Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post

Oh no doubt. It gets crazy loud with the Magni as well, and also is loud enough on an ipod.

Look, I'm not trying to tell anybody they need to use iPods (i tend to dislike apple, anyway) because there is a lot more to the story than loudness. But the example of the iPod is a particularly weak one because the iPod only spits out 1.5 Vrms or so, which---according to these formulas that you are discrediting---is not enough to get the HE-500's to 110dBSPL

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post

You'll one day realize it's not about loudness,

 

This is exactly the point I'm trying to make.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ab initio View Post
 loudness is not the reason to get a Lyr. Lyr would offer a different, customizable, sonic quality, and that is a perfectly valid reason to get one. biggrin.gif

 

Also, about this:

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post

You'll one day realize it's not about loudness, which I know sounds odd to you because you've been zombie brainwashed by psuedo science and engineering by that moron who is banned and operates his own blog.

Please don't do this, I'm not calling you names.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post

Having almost infinite headroom is nice/wanted because the amp operates at close to idle and is the most linear as possible. You want overkill headroom if at all possible, especially with planars. I think those numbers and forumlas are for ideal conditions and does not accurately simiulate how the driver will react under a lot of stress/load when actual complex music is playing instead of test tone bursts to collect data.

I'm arguing that Asgard still has headroom for the HE-500 at any reasonable listening volume. That's the point of the target 110dB SPL---that represents a really really loud transient

 

I haven't said anything of test signals, simulations, or anything else. However, I can tell you than every HiFi audio amplifier or driver strives to respond linearly to the input signal---if it doesn't response linearly, then it is distorting the audio. For this application, see Hi-Fi vs Pro-Audio. What linearity means is that those tone burst tests that you are bashing are an excellent diagnostic of the Hi-Fi audio system if they are done carefully.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post

*also consider that the HE-500 drivers have been measured as low as 86 decible efficiency instead of 89 and 60 ohms insteadof 38ohms, depending on product variation. So yeah having insane headroom is nice and never unnecessary for planars.

This is the first good point that you've made biggrin.gif

Product variation is certainly something to keep in mind! However, I'd like to point out that the Asgard can drive the same power into 50hms as it can into 32Ohms (see the numerous asgard links above). What this means is that the asgard is current limited at lower impedance, and as the impedance of the headphone it is driving increases, so will the available voltage swing increase. The end result is that the less efficient headphone actually becomes a bit easier load for the voltage-capable Asgard

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post
 The new Schiit Rag will be putting out 9+ Watts into 50 ohms and I'm excited about that. According to your monkey formulas not even 1/100th of this is necessary, so those formulas are not giving us a complete picture. There are other variables to driving headphones.

Let me reiterate that nowhere am I attacking high power output amps. Also let me reiterate that I personally use an amplifier that has way more gain than I could ever use with my headphones. I am not trying to insult anybody with an overpowered amplifier. I was calculating the power and hypothetical sound pressure levels for a given headphone-amplifier combination to show that loudness is not the limiting factor. I have very clearly stated that the merits for getting a different amplifier (Lyr, Mjolnir, or whatnot) is because of characteristics other than loudness. Let me remind you:

Quote:
Originally Posted by ab initio View Post

The only reason to get a Lyr would be for a slight change in tone due to the added harmonic distortion from the tube stage, and then ability to swap out tubes for the coloring that best suits your taste :)

In the case of Lyr, you would sacrifice the noise floor (-92dB with Lyr vs the -102dB with Asgard) for tube sound. (Notice we're not discussing the Valhalla because it lacks the current to sufficiently drive the HE-500)

In the case of Mjolnir, you get better noise floor than the Asgard (-104dB) and better frequency response and better distortion performance. I'm not arguing about needing more/less loudness. I'm only pointing out that the reason to get different amps lies in their tonal characteristics. If you prefer the tube sound of Lyr then you by all means should use Lyr. But it is dishonest to tell somebody that they *need* to upgrade to Lyr in order to use their HE-500s because there is no evidence that says their Asgard cannot! The Asgard will drive the HE-500s and it will sound like Asgard and it is capable if getting more than loud enough.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post

*Also to be clear I think the Magni does an admirable job of driving the HE-500. Not the best but certainly more than ok and a great value of an amp.


I'm curious how the Magni will pair up with the Paradox headphones I have on order! I'm quite anxious to try them out. I think the T50rp's are a little easier to push than the HE-500, so I've got high hopes that it will make a nice paring! biggrin.gif

 

 

I guess the whole point of this in the first place was to point out that the Asgard is capable. I'm not trying to bash anybody's Lyr. I'll be honest, if I have a wad of change to drop on a new headphone amp, the Lyr would be number one on my list so that I could try tubes and tube swapping since I already have a solid state.

 

 

Cheers!


Edited by ab initio - 7/25/13 at 4:06pm
post #2884 of 12183

just ordered magni from schiit site yesterday and they posted it out on the same day~ wow! talk about efficiency

 

so, since I'm from Malaysia, it could take weeks to reach, haha

 

oh well, just thinking, will the Magni be an overkill for my custom one pro? lol, or maybe get the best sound out of it?

post #2885 of 12183
Quote:
Originally Posted by ab initio View Post

Look, I'm not trying to tell anybody they need to use iPods (i tend to dislike apple, anyway) because there is a lot more to the story than loudness. But the example of the iPod is a particularly weak one because the iPod only spits out 1.5 Vrms or so, which---according to these formulas that you are discrediting---is not enough to get the HE-500's to 110dBSPL

 

 

This is exactly the point I'm trying to make.

 

Also, about this:

 

Please don't do this, I'm not calling you names.

 

 

I'm arguing that Asgard still has headroom for the HE-500 at any reasonable listening volume. That's the point of the target 110dB SPL---that represents a really really loud transient

 

I haven't said anything of test signals, simulations, or anything else. However, I can tell you than every HiFi audio amplifier or driver strives to respond linearly to the input signal---if it doesn't response linearly, then it is distorting the audio. For this application, see Hi-Fi vs Pro-Audio. What linearity means is that those tone burst tests that you are bashing are an excellent diagnostic of the Hi-Fi audio system if they are done carefully.

 

This is the first good point that you've made biggrin.gif

Product variation is certainly something to keep in mind! However, I'd like to point out that the Asgard can drive the same power into 50hms as it can into 32Ohms (see the numerous asgard links above). What this means is that the asgard is current limited at lower impedance, and as the impedance of the headphone it is driving increases, so will the available voltage swing increase. The end result is that the less efficient headphone actually becomes a bit easier load for the voltage-capable Asgard

 

Let me reiterate that nowhere am I attacking high power output amps. Also let me reiterate that I personally use an amplifier that has way more gain than I could ever use with my headphones. I am not trying to insult anybody with an overpowered amplifier. I was calculating the power and hypothetical sound pressure levels for a given headphone-amplifier combination to show that loudness is not the limiting factor. I have very clearly stated that the merits for getting a different amplifier (Lyr, Mjolnir, or whatnot) is because of characteristics other than loudness. Let me remind you:

In the case of Lyr, you would sacrifice the noise floor (-92dB with Lyr vs the -102dB with Asgard) for tube sound. (Notice we're not discussing the Valhalla because it lacks the current to sufficiently drive the HE-500)

In the case of Mjolnir, you get better noise floor than the Asgard (-104dB) and better frequency response and better distortion performance. I'm not arguing about needing more/less loudness. I'm only pointing out that the reason to get different amps lies in their tonal characteristics. If you prefer the tube sound of Lyr then you by all means should use Lyr. But it is dishonest to tell somebody that they *need* to upgrade to Lyr in order to use their HE-500s because there is no evidence that says their Asgard cannot! The Asgard will drive the HE-500s and it will sound like Asgard and it is capable if getting more than loud enough.

 

 


I'm curious how the Magni will pair up with the Paradox headphones I have on order! I'm quite anxious to try them out. I think the T50rp's are a little easier to push than the HE-500, so I've got high hopes that it will make a nice paring! biggrin.gif

 

 

I guess the whole point of this in the first place was to point out that the Asgard is capable. I'm not trying to bash anybody's Lyr. I'll be honest, if I have a wad of change to drop on a new headphone amp, the Lyr would be number one on my list so that I could try tubes and tube swapping since I already have a solid state.

 

 

Cheers!

Wow ab......you are sure a patient and agreeable person. Not sure I could keep my calm answering to all the stuff that was thrown at you. Well done!

post #2886 of 12183

ab inito simple question: why is 110db SPL necessary? Who came up with this figure as the ideal amount of headroom? Where is the science behind this 110 number? Why not 111? or 121? Who's to say when benefits from headroom stop at 110? What if I say the benefits of headroom continue till 140db SPL? or 150db SPL?

 

Ipod will get me to the desired volume according to your formula. No headroom of course but to a normal listening volume. I''m only giving this as an example because your formula would indicate there isn't anything more necessary than to reach certain SPLs, which just isn't true. There's more to driving a headphone then just reaching loud db SPL.

 

For the record I did not call you names I said you're likely "zombie brain washed". The moron I was referring to is obviously not you unless you operate your own blog and have been banned from Head-Fi previously.

 

Edit:

 

So the other thing I find objectionable from your long answer is:

 

"But it is dishonest to tell somebody that they *need* to upgrade to Lyr in order to use their HE-500s because there is no evidence that says their Asgard cannot! The Asgard will drive the HE-500s and it will sound like Asgard and it is capable if getting more than loud enough."

 

My answer:

 

Dishonest? Seriously? Have you heard the Lyr? It's not about noise floor and SPLs and tube tonality changes. The Lyr flat out sounds better than the Asgard on the HE-500. The proof is in the hearing, not in crunching numbers. I gave my views based on personal experience. You gave your views based on no experience and just pure number crunching. The real world sometimes doesn't act in the way your think it should. This is why I said you're zombie brain washed because you feel comfortable dissmissing the experiences of others based on no experience using just data. How do you know all relevant factors have been measured and quantified? You really don't if you're honest with yourself. Becuase you only know how to run  numbers they give you and don't know what else can be measured.


Edited by M-13 - 7/25/13 at 4:57pm
post #2887 of 12183

All this talk reminds me of a quote from Happy Camper:

 

If it sounds bad but measures good, then it's bad. If it sound good but measures bad you measured the wrong thing.

 

I know you have good intentionas Ab inito and you feel so smart about saving yourself $200 because people who buy the Lyr are getting a worse performing amp so they can satisfy their weird desire for distortion and coloration from tubes. But this world view is not true. The Lyr can be even more neutral/cleaner sounding while extracting more details than the Asgard 2. Some of the best amps in the world are built with tubes. Like the EC Balancing Act, and Blue Hawaii. People are not just paying for coloration and distortion. Most of these owners place neutrality as a high prority if not the highest priority. They're paying for superior performance simple as that. So yeah man go out a listen to more gear and less time crunching numbers.


Edited by M-13 - 7/25/13 at 4:56pm
post #2888 of 12183
Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post

All this talk reminds me of a quote from Happy Camper:.

Haha.

 

"If it measures good and sounds bad, it is bad; if it measures bad and sounds good, you have measured the wrong thing." - Daniel R. von Recklinghausen, former Chief Research Engineer, H.H. Scott

post #2889 of 12183
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eee Pee View Post

Haha.

 

"If it measures good and sounds bad, it is bad; if it measures bad and sounds good, you have measured the wrong thing." - Daniel R. von Recklinghausen, former Chief Research Engineer, H.H. Scott

Ah! Nice catch my friend.beerchug.gif touche

post #2890 of 12183
Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post

ab inito simple question: why is 110db SPL necessary? Who came up with this figure as the ideal amount of headroom? Where is the science behind this 110 number? Why not 111? or 121? Who's to say when benefits from headroom stop at 110? What if I say the benefits of headroom continue till 140db SPL? or 150db SPL?

 

Ipod will get me to the desired volume according to your formula. No headroom of course but to a normal listening volume. I''m only giving this as an example because your formula would indicate there isn't anything more necessary than to reach certain SPLs, which just isn't true. There's more to driving a headphone then just reaching loud db SPL.

 

For the record I did not call you names I said your likely "zombie brain washed". The moron I was referring to is obviously not you unless you operate your own blog and have been banned from Head-Fi previously.

 

110dB as a target SPL is a great question. It's just a reference point, and you are absolutely right that 111 vs 110 is arbitrary. The fact is, when you want to do systematic comparisons, you have to choose a reference and stick to it. In this case, xnor choose 110dB SPL as a target SPL and what you should probably do is ask that questions here, but I can summarize in my own words why this is a pretty reasonable target loudness.

 

First off, 110dB is loud. Like chainsaw loud. This is really really really bad for your hearing to experience 110dB for a duration of time. The point of having the ability to reach 110dB is for dramatic effect during transients (for example, passages like this). Sure, I guess you could go a little louder, or perhaps you don't like blowing your eardrums into your skull.

 

There's practical limits to how loud a headphone can go and if you try to go louder, then the headphones distort until finally the magic smoke can escape.

140 and 150dB SPL are at a ridiculous level and is well beyond hearing damage.


As far as headroom goes, the whole point is to have linear output. As you reach the limits of  your amplifier, you will begin to clip your signal, which adds distortion. The headroom that is enough is that which allows any permissible input signal to result in an output signal that is within the linear operating range of the amplifier. For a given amplifier, if you look at total harmonic distortion vs signal input amplitude, you can see that there is a certain point where the distortion explodes---this is where the amplifier is clipping. Every amplifier will be different, and the point of clipping will depend on the amplifier and on the load it is driving.

 

For example, in the case of the asgard, the amplifier will run out of available current before voltage---this is what i was alluding to in my comment:

Quote:
Originally Posted by ab initio View Post

PS. check the math for the Asgard configuration and see if you can identify a limitation---there's a subtlety there. wink.gif


This is evidenced by Asgard being able to drive 1W into 50Ohm and still only 1W into 32Ohm. The maximum voltage swing that the Asgard is capable isn't available at the lowest impedance because the amplifier will "run out of available current" before it reaches peak voltage. Note, that 1W into 32Ohms (similar to 34Ohm HE-500) is still way more than what we estimated we need for 110dB SPL. We estimate that the HE-500 needs about 2.5V to get to the excessively loud 110dB SPL level. Asgard can swing 5.7Vrms across (5.7Vrms = sqrt(1W * 32Ohm) ) the HE-500.

 

What does this mean? It means that you need 2.5 Vrms to get to freaking loud volume and the Asgard can deliver more than twice that. On top of that, 110dB SPL is supposed to represent the absolute maximum transient you would want to experience---it gives you headroom for your music which should have rms levels closer to 90dB rms (which is still hearing-damaging when listened to for any length of time!!!) that's 20dB of head room built into our reference. So what voltages does our amp need to spit out on average when the average SPL is 90dB? well, it's 20dB below 2.5Vrms ....

Vtypical = 2.5Vrms@110dB SPL * 10^( (90dB target - 110dB reference)/20 ) 
         = 2.5Vrms * 0.1 
         = 0.25 Vrms

 

So....

Asgard can swing 5.7Vrms and the typical, loud-listening voltage is 0.25 Vrms and we would like peak transients to reach 2.5Vrms

that means the 20dB headroom has > 6dB headroom L3000.gif

 

This is only applicable to music that has high dynamic range---- like 20dB of it. What's pop music typically these days? like 6dB? Classical and jazz recordings are probably the places where 20dB headroom is required. (someone care to chime in on this?)

 

Note, the iPod can reach the 0.25 Vrms easily, so yes, it gets the headphones loud-on-average. But the iPod lacks the headroom for dynamics that the Asgard provides, which means that the Asgard is going to provide an enriched listening experience over the iPod, even though both get "loud"---the iPod will be more compressed.

 

Cheers!

post #2891 of 12183
Need some help have the he500 the lyr and I am using the Odac would the bifrost USB be a major upgrade in sound need advice
post #2892 of 12183
Quote:
Originally Posted by tuna47 View Post

Need some help have the he500 the lyr and I am using the Odac would the bifrost USB be a major upgrade in sound need advice


Since you are double posting, so will I:

 

Dude, it's a $150 portable DAC, what do you think? It will smoke it, be realistic (not the Radio Shack kind)

 

Stereophile reviews the Bifrost this month and called it the best value per dollar he has EVER reviewed, or something to that effect...

 

You will see god

post #2893 of 12183
Quote:
Originally Posted by tuna47 View Post

Need some help have the he500 the lyr and I am using the Odac would the bifrost USB be a major upgrade in sound need advice

Yes Tuna, as jmsaxon69 says your Odac will be "smoked" LOL. Evaluating DACs are one of the harder things to do in this hobby, but once you "get it" you'll hear the differences loud and clear. I think you'll be happy with the Uber-Frost.

 

*jmsaxon you must remember to turn off your "invisibility mode" so people like Tuna stop ignoring you. LOL beerchug.gif

post #2894 of 12183
Quote:
Originally Posted by M-13 View Post

All this talk reminds me of a quote from Happy Camper:

 

If it sounds bad but measures good, then it's bad. If it sound good but measures bad you measured the wrong thing.

 

I know you have good intentionas Ab inito and you feel so smart about saving yourself $200 because people who buy the Lyr are getting a worse performing amp so they can satisfy their weird desire for distortion and coloration from tubes. But this world view is not true. The Lyr can be even more neutral/cleaner sounding while extracting more details than the Asgard 2. Some of the best amps in the world are built with tubes. Like the EC Balancing Act, and Blue Hawaii. People are not just paying for coloration and distortion. Most of these owners place neutrality as a high prority if not the highest priority. They're paying for superior performance simple as that. So yeah man go out a listen to more gear and less time crunching numbers.


This has nothing to do with me. You are clearly misinterpreting my posts. I'm trying to demonstrate the fundamental principles at play and provide examples for the types of quick checks people can do to see if Headphone A can be drive by amplifier B. Nowhere have I made any claims about one thing being better than another. I've stated the most accurate information available about the products in question and proceeded with a fundamentally sound analysis to determine whether or not the Asgard can drive the HE-500 to sufficient levels.

 

You can prefer the Lyr. I've never ruled out that possibility. I've stated my own desire to own a Lyr. I cannot afford one because my stipend doesn't allow me to. I do not come from a wealthy background. I have looked to find the best audio equipment that I can afford. It is unfair for you to demand that I have to purchase thousands of dollars in high end audio equipment. I cannot.

 

If you look elsewhere on the forums, I have stated that tube amplifiers are capable of exceptional performance and measureables. This has nothing to do with owners of high end tube amplifiers. This has nothing to do with owners of low end amplifiers. This has everything to do with the fact that the Asgard will drive the HE-500 like an Asgard.

 

You told TheChoosenOne that if he/she got the HE-500 that they might have to upgrade to the Lyr. I was just commenting that the HE-500s fit within the Asgard's operational envelop and that the Lyr is optional according to theChoosenOne's taste. This is the only thing that you should have taken from my original post. I haven't seen anybody come out and say that the HE-500 doesn't work with the Asgard.

 

If this is incorrect, then I hope that Jason or Mike from Schiit will correct me. There are the only ones who have knowledge of the Asgard beyond what's reported on the Schiit website or subjective impressions.

 

 

By the way, the Schiit website specifically says that the Asgard works well with the HE-500.

 

Cheers!


Edited by ab initio - 7/25/13 at 7:38pm
post #2895 of 12183

Hey ab initio, Let's just stop. I think both of us have made our points and people can decide on their own now.confused_face(1).gif

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