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Audeze LCD-3 and $1K amp or Audeze LCD-2 and $2K, where is the sweet spot? - Page 7

post #91 of 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarknightDK View Post

 

You mentioned that your preference in music are along the lines of mainstream music such as hip hop, rnb, drum n bass, dubstep, pop, rock, house, dance which you also agree do not have the best mastering altogether. Mainstream music are typically produced to sound good over the radio (i.e. excessive treble, muddy bass, etc). Hence, I suggested the LCD-2 as, given your preference for mainstream music, you will not need a more resolving headphone as it will not sound any better. Hence, the LCD-2 is more than sufficient for your current requirements. However, if you intend to listen to more resolving and HD tracks in future, then you can consider the LCD-3.

 

I have the WA22 paired with the LCD-3 and they are an excellent combo (with the right tubes of course).

 

For now, I would advise you to settle for something which your budget allows. If you want to go with the LCD-3 and top tier amps, be prepared to spend north of $6000 (at least - for quality amp / dacs / tubes). Anything less and you will not notice much of a difference between the LCD-2 and LCD-3. Just my humble opinion of course.

 

Well I very humbly disagree. Why are you so hung on the "resolving" bit, whatever that means? All that "mainstream" mastering is also a terrible generalization. rolleyes.gif

 

LCD-2 and LCD-3 have a different sound signatures, which have been documented here over and over. You should choose the one you like more. I have no problem running my LCD-3 on a lowly Lake People amp. I wouldn't have chosen LCD-3 unless it sounded (much) better to me, not to mention the comfort? It's ridiculous suggesting that I should have not chosen LCD-3 since it's "not much different" to LCD-2 on the same amp? confused.gif


Edited by hekeli - 7/30/12 at 6:50am
post #92 of 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by hekeli View Post

 It's ridiculous suggesting that I should have not chosen LCD-3 since it's "not much different" to LCD-2 on the same amp? confused.gif

 

Agreed. While amps are important to fine tune a sound and under some circumstances can make the difference between you being satisfied long term with a headphone or not, they simply can't make the sorts of radical differences that are being implied here (and elsewhere). An amp's function is to amplify, and unless there's something grossly wrong with the design, it cannot make one headphone sound much like another, lesser headphone. As for a headphone being underpowered, I don't buy it that these phones are that hard to drive. And if gross underpowering is taking place, such as could change the nature of the sound, distortion would be evident. I've been into headphones since 1969, and frankly, much of what I read about the importance and function of amps here and in other forums strikes me as pure BS.

 

Sorry. but I have to call it as I see it.   

post #93 of 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post

 

Agreed. While amps are important to fine tune a sound and under some circumstances can make the difference between you being satisfied long term with a headphone or not, they simply can't make the sorts of radical differences that are being implied here (and elsewhere). An amp's function is to amplify, and unless there's something grossly wrong with the design, it cannot make one headphone sound much like another, lesser headphone. As for a headphone being underpowered, I don't buy it that these phones are that hard to drive. And if gross underpowering is taking place, such as could change the nature of the sound, distortion would be evident. I've been into headphones since 1969, and frankly, much of what I read about the importance and function of amps here and in other forums strikes me as pure BS.

 

Sorry. but I have to call it as I see it.   

I'm trying to understand what you ment. Are you saying a lesser headphone can't scale on a good amp?

I think it's also important to note that if an amp gets some kind of a rave reputation, it's not just about the amp,

the source is just as important, but here I thought that was a given.


Edited by paradoxper - 7/30/12 at 9:05am
post #94 of 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post

 An amp's function is to amplify, and unless there's something grossly wrong with the design, it cannot make one headphone sound much like another, lesser headphone.

 

Sorry. but I have to call it as I see it.   

 

Yes it can and you really should call it as you hear it ;)  The LCD-3 on the Liquid Fire and Peak are wildly different.  To the point that the HD800 on the Peak sounds very similar to the LCD-3 on the Liquid Fire :O

post #95 of 209

As science and Bob Carver have proved, all amps with similar frequency response, power output and distortion specs will sound pretty much the same.  That said, many amps don't have flat frequency responses, vary in power output and have audible distortion, particularly when driven hard.  Combined with the fact that headphones vary in frequency response, I have no doubt that some amps are better suited for one headphone vs. the other.  However, listening to 2 reasonably good SS amps (the Burson HA 160 and my Adcom pre-amp) side by side for many hours, on 6 different high-end cans, I could not tell the difference between the amps.  The difference between sources and headphones was obvious, even between the LCD-2 and LCD-3.  That's why I bought the LDC-3

 

Tube amps are a completely different ballgame from SS.  Tubes do often add coloration -- i.e., non-flat frequency response, and sometimes distortion -- to the sound, and depending on quality control, might vary in performance from tube to tube. 

 

I once again recommend that anybody about to plunk down thousands of bucks on equipment should listen to the equipment first, on the type of music that they listen to most.  Whether that's at a meet, at your local Audeze or Sennheiser or Company X dealer, or using the Cable Co's library.  While I would love for everybody on the planet to like what I like, and generally to agree with me on every subject, that would be a very boring world, with very few choices.  I love reading various people's opinions on this forum, but in the end, I let my own ears/brain combination determine my headphone/amp combination.


Edited by Gary in MD - 7/30/12 at 6:59pm
post #96 of 209
Comparing amps at this level is tricky, propably less than 10% performance difference.
post #97 of 209

Again, if you read my post above, what I'm saying is that, with the LCD-3, the source matters more. All the way from the type of music you listen to (i.e. MP3 / AIFF / etc) to the DAC to the Amp. Sure you can use your LCD-3 with whatever source you want, but you won't be hearing the LCD-3 at its full potential. This is my point all along. However, with the LCD-2, the source matters less and that is why I implied that, with lesser source material, there would be less of a difference in sound quality between the LCD-2 and LCD-3. Again, IMO of course.


Edited by DarknightDK - 7/30/12 at 6:12pm
post #98 of 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solude View Post

 

The LCD-3 on the Liquid Fire and Peak are wildly different.  

 

 

"Wildly"?  Did you really mean to say "wildly"? I don't believe that word has any business loitering around amps and sources, only speakers and headphones. Or maybe your definition differs "wildly" from mine.  

post #99 of 209

Well if an amp makes one headphone sound like another, I'd say that's pretty wild :p  What did you think of the Peak and Liquid Fire?

post #100 of 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solude View Post

Well if an amp makes one headphone sound like another, I'd say that's pretty wild :p  What did you think of the Peak and Liquid Fire?

 

You're not a lawyer, are you? They say lawyers only ask questions to which they already know the answer. wink_face.gif

 

Of course I don't buy the first proposition. Or rather, I would say that if an amp makes one phone sound like another, they were pretty close to begin with. As for your question, I don't own and have never heard either amp. The whole point of my argument is that expensive amps simply aren't necessary. Of course, if you have the money and wish to buy one, by all means do so. As I said above: "amps are important to fine tune a sound and under some circumstances can make the difference between being satisfied long term with a headphone or not". (Notice I say "long term", as the effects are subtle). My objection is not with people buying expensive amps or even waxing lyrical over them, but rather with advice that exaggerates the difference and puts people off buying a better headphone for fear they won't hear any improvement. They'll hear an improvement with any well-designed amp, and well-designed doesn't have to mean expensive. I currently get great results from my LCD-2 Rev1 with an amp that cost me less than $100 on Ebay (the Muse mini dac, a clone of the Aune). I switched at one stage to the Matrix M-stage with Class A mod but found it not quite as open and resolving, though very neutral. It was difficult on A-B to hear much difference, but it did become apparent over time. That's how it is with amps. No doubt a $2000 amp would give me better detail, more punch, but it wouldn't make the LCD-2 sound like a 3, any more than would driving the 3 with a Matrix make it sound like a 2.

 

Of course you'll object that I haven't heard a $2000 amp and therefore can't know. No, but having been in hi-fi for 47 years I have a pretty good idea of what electronics can and can't achieve. We'll probably have to agree to disagree on this one, but I just wanted to put the other side of the argument for those who own decent but not expensive amps (like the Matrix, say) and are contemplating upgrading their phones.

post #101 of 209

Hmm. in my experience, running headphones from high end amps to cmoys, I've never experienced any amp that can drastically change the final sound to such a degree.

 

An LCD3 running off a cmoy still sounds like an LCD3 (though not a great one). And HD800 running off a cmoy still sounds like an HD800.

 

I've taken both headphones and run them off Lyrs, headroom amps, Burson amps, RWA amps and they still don't sound anything alike. They sound slightly different from one amp to another but no amp can (or should) make one headphone sound like another one.

 

If an amp can so drastically change the sound of a headphone compared to other amps, then I would suggest the amp is broken and not doing its job properly.

post #102 of 209

I own the LCD2.2 and the Cavalli Liquid Fire and it is beyond great as a listening experience.  I do want to get the LCD3's at some point as well.  You mentioned Woo amps and having owned a WA22 I would skip those entirely-not enough power.  One of the guys I know here had excellent results with the Violectric V200 so at your budget I recommend getting the LCD3's and the Violectric V200.  Getting the LCD3's is going to give you the best non-Stat phone period so you won't suffer the coulda-shoulda syndrome and you'll be done on that end.  The Violectric is going to deliver and when you want to move on(no one is buying this stuff w/o looking ahead even if its years-my confession is that I'd one day I would like the Stax 009 and a LL to go with it!) it won't take a bath selling it.  Plus its just a beautiful bit of kit as well!  Good luck!

post #103 of 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post

 

You're not a lawyer, are you? They say lawyers only ask questions to which they already know the answer. wink_face.gif

 

Of course I don't buy the first proposition. Or rather, I would say that if an amp makes one phone sound like another, they were pretty close to begin with. As for your question, I don't own and have never heard either amp. The whole point of my argument is that expensive amps simply aren't necessary. Of course, if you have the money and wish to buy one, by all means do so. As I said above: "amps are important to fine tune a sound and under some circumstances can make the difference between being satisfied long term with a headphone or not". (Notice I say "long term", as the effects are subtle). My objection is not with people buying expensive amps or even waxing lyrical over them, but rather with advice that exaggerates the difference and puts people off buying a better headphone for fear they won't hear any improvement. They'll hear an improvement with any well-designed amp, and well-designed doesn't have to mean expensive. I currently get great results from my LCD-2 Rev1 with an amp that cost me less than $100 on Ebay (the Muse mini dac, a clone of the Aune). I switched at one stage to the Matrix M-stage with Class A mod but found it not quite as open and resolving, though very neutral. It was difficult on A-B to hear much difference, but it did become apparent over time. That's how it is with amps. No doubt a $2000 amp would give me better detail, more punch, but it wouldn't make the LCD-2 sound like a 3, any more than would driving the 3 with a Matrix make it sound like a 2.

 

Of course you'll object that I haven't heard a $2000 amp and therefore can't know. No, but having been in hi-fi for 47 years I have a pretty good idea of what electronics can and can't achieve. We'll probably have to agree to disagree on this one, but I just wanted to put the other side of the argument for those who own decent but not expensive amps (like the Matrix, say) and are contemplating upgrading their phones.

Nice explanation, but you really shouldn't be talking considering you haven't heard x gear. While making claims that x gear provides no change to x can.

This is still the recurring problem on Head-Fi, people talking without listening. Just my 2 cents.

post #104 of 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by Icenine2 View Post

I own the LCD2.2 and the Cavalli Liquid Fire and it is beyond great as a listening experience.  I do want to get the LCD3's at some point as well.  You mentioned Woo amps and having owned a WA22 I would skip those entirely-not enough power.  One of the guys I know here had excellent results with the Violectric V200 so at your budget I recommend getting the LCD3's and the Violectric V200.  Getting the LCD3's is going to give you the best non-Stat phone period so you won't suffer the coulda-shoulda syndrome and you'll be done on that end.  The Violectric is going to deliver and when you want to move on(no one is buying this stuff w/o looking ahead even if its years-my confession is that I'd one day I would like the Stax 009 and a LL to go with it!) it won't take a bath selling it.  Plus its just a beautiful bit of kit as well!  Good luck!

 

Good idea re principles; but beware the V200/LCD3 combo. It is surprisingly bad.

 

V200/LCD2.2 very very good

 

V200/LCD3 very bad

 

I don't know why, but it is quite a stark badness.

 

The cheaper Burson Soloist is a FAR better match with the 3.

 

This has become something of a mantra for me.... my apologies to those who have heard it before.

 

All IMO, of course :-)


Edited by Duckman - 7/31/12 at 5:33pm
post #105 of 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by paradoxper View Post

Nice explanation, but you really shouldn't be talking considering you haven't heard x gear. While making claims that x gear provides no change to x can.

 

 

That's a point I've already acknowledged. But if you told me that putting slightly bald tyres on a Ferrari would make it feel like a mini, I'd be equally skeptical, and I wouldn't need to have driven a Ferrari with slightly bald tyres to justify my skepticism. For me, what's being suggested simply goes against decades of experience.

 

Incidentally, I certainly didn't suggest that x gear provides no change to x can. If that were true this whole forum could close down now.

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