I'm not saying that the Mad Dog is in any way technically superior to either of those two flagships: it's not. However, what I realized today was that the PS1000 and T5P never truly allow me immersion into my music; they lose sight of the goal of musical enjoyment in favor of sonic reproduction.
What I get from the headphones I'm keeping (my Mad Dog and ESP950) is something much more important to me than pure resolution or accuracy. I found myself truly enjoying my music for the first time in what seems like months today, coming through a meek uDAC2 and a $300 pair of headphones. In the past I've longed for an SR009 or an Orpheus, but I think my ears have found their true home here. The Mad Dog never sounds screechy, never lets me down on a song I love, and yet is able to astound me with detail almost at the same level as the TOTL gear I own, even on a modest setup.
I listened to Passengers, Sparklehorse, Broken Bells...and by the time I realized it was 10:30 and I'd done nothing with my evening by society's standards, I simply didn't care anymore. Thank you, Dan, for making what is definitely my sweet spot.
That, my friends, is what it's all about. After all the scouring and searching for the best of the best, we sometimes lose sight of what's best for our own ears. I'm thousands into this hobby, and only now am I realizing that the greatest satisfaction I get in it is with a half-K committment of cash between every audio component in my system. I'm rethinking it all, and I'm loving the way it sounds.
Edited by ssrock64 - 3/15/13 at 8:34pm