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post #151 of 163

Too bad no one took a pic of Nick with the 009 - ya know, the Stax without the "etch"?  :-)

 

I actually liked the LFF Planar phones, but it would take an amp search to match with them - for my taste... and, remember why I sold the (balanced) HD800. We were not meant to be together... like me and my first wife. Just following the SR-009 path, while deciding that I could live with the Ayon as a source for a little longer, mainly because no one brought a PWD.

post #152 of 163
Well this meet was certainly less mini than before, and people stayed past the end! Thanks again to Nick for hosting. It was good to see everyone again and meet new people.

On to the impressions...

First some group A/B results:

Schiit Mjolnir vs Bryston BHA-1:

9 people surveyed
2 preferred the Mjolnir outright
1 preferred the BHA-1 but would buy the Mjolnir based on price
5 preferred the BHA-1 outright
1 preferred the BHA-1 but the price difference was too close to call

Performance winner: Bryston. The Mjolnir certainly gives it a run for it's money though.

Schiit Bifrost vs Schiit Gungnir:

5 people surveyed

Unanimous decision for the Gungnir being a very noticeable clear upgrade over the Bifrost

Schiit Gungnir vs Audiolab MDAC:

3 people surveyed

Unanimous decision for the Gungnir being a slight winner over the MDAC. The MDAC was noted to have some smearing in the lower treble, and overall a hair less detail. A close competition, really though.

Some personal notes:

LFF's Paradox is excellent. It's comfortable, looks good, and most important sounds fantastic. It's flat, so less treble than I'm used to with the HD800, but it still sounded right. Soundstage of course was not quite as good being a planar, but I didn't have nearly the issue I normally do with planars. I would have to hear the competition again, but from memory I prefer it over the Audeze, Hifiman, and most of the Staxen planars.

Denon D7000 - Bright and bassy. Fun signature, but not really my cup of tea. I could live with it if it was my only option, but it isn't giving me a realistic presentation from any measure.

HE60/LL/Ayon - Still think this combo rolls off too much. Turns the HE60 into a super HD650, which I've never been too fond of. Starting out being a stat makes it livable, but for the same money I would go a different route.

SR009/LL/Cambridge 851 - Very nice. Still too polite. The detail level makes it sound like there is good slam and drive, but the energy level doesn't match so it ends up sounding odd. Still has the soundstage issues I have with most planars. Impressive, but still not for me.

Grado RS-1 - Found my last Grado I haven't heard besides unicorns (HP1000, etc) and yes it's a Grado. Still don't like them. This one was better than most, similar to the RS-2 which I also sort of liked. Still prefer the PS500 from the Grado line, but not enough to actually want one.

Looking forward to the next tier from Schiit, and also looking forward to next meet in Austin around March.
post #153 of 163

Funny thing is that I never cared for the HD650 either, and like to think of the HE60 as a super HD600 - just to perpetuate a decade long debate.  :-)

post #154 of 163

The real question will be, will the new Senn stat follow past sound, or be something altogether different?
 

post #155 of 163

Awesome meet! Thanks Nick for being a fantastic host and providing a great location!

 

So, yeah, I made a rash decision and traded my somewhat vintage RS-1s away at the meet. I picked up ktm's Stax SRM-1/MK-2 / SR-404 combo in the trade. Any regrets? Nope! I still have a pair of SR-225's to satisfy my Grado love anyway.

 

It'd been a while since I'd heard a Stax setup, and I was really enjoying the combo / lots of musicality, which is my ultimate goal in a headphone setup (not chasing details or neutrality). If my foot is tapping, if my body is moving to the music, then I'm happy. This probably explains why I'm a fan of Grados, but the SRM-1/MK-2 / SR-404 combo did that for me as well. It's smoother and more laid-back, and with a wider soundstage than the RS-1 / MAD Ear+ combo. Something I didn't know I was looking for at the time, but I'm glad I found.

 

But now I'm at that point where I have to make it just a little bit better. So I'm going to pick up Yuceka's SRM-1/MK-2 since I think it sounded just a tad smoother and more refined than ktm's version (Revision C vs Revision B apparently). And then, I think I need to improve my source (currently a Bifrost). Not sure what to do about that just yet / maybe a Gungnir?

 

Speaking of the Gungnir, Maxvla graciously set-up an A/B test between the Gungnir and Bifrost for me. After a very brief test with the HD800s, the Gungnir was the clear winner. Just so much more detail. I was listening to a Radiohead track at the time, and I could hear details in the individual vibrations of Thom Yorke's voice. Not so with the Bifrost / voice was smooth, but not detailed. Aside from that, in my quick test, I noticed that the overall presentation really opened up / clearer separation of instruments - Bifrost sounded compressed in comparison.

 

Maxvla also set-up an A/B test between the Bryston and Mjolnir. Since it was late in the day at this point, and since it was immediately clear that the Bryston is the better amp, I didn't bother listening to the Mjolnir for more than a few seconds. So take my opinion on this one for what it's worth, but if you are considering the Bryston and Mjolnir and the money difference isn't a problem, just go with the Bryston and be done with it.

 

BTW, the HD800s were a treat. I didn't think I liked them at first, but when directly comparing them with the RS-1s, it was clear / HD800s are a very nice headphone.

 

As far as my MAD Ear+ and Nick's MAD Ear+ HD 25th Anniversary / Nick's was the clear winner. Wider soundstage, more control, just, everything about it was better. Now I haven't rolled the tubes in mine, so it would have been interesting to swap out the tube in Nick's with the one in mine, but I never got around to doing so. And with my switch to the Stax setup, my Ear+ might very well go up for sale soon anyway.

 

Anything else?

 

Oh yeah ... I listened to MorbidToaster's set-up. You know, the Stax 009 + Liquid Lightning? I really don't get what the big deal is. Seriously, not that big of a deal. Really.

 

Except that it's ridiculously awesome. It handled any genre of music I threw at it with complete control. It was a ton of fun to listen to as well.

 

I think that sums it up for me. Great meet!

post #156 of 163

Sucks to be me:   I live in the DFW area and have only just now stumbled onto this thread - three days following a meet.  frown.gif

 

Hey, this is great!  I'm glad I stumbled onto this thread, just now!  I'm going to keep my eyes peeled so that I can make the next meet!  

 

Subscribed!

 

biggrin.gif


Edited by zilch0md - 10/17/12 at 5:37am
post #157 of 163

A club Polk member, I see. There were a couple of guys that didn't make it out. But there are quite a few that are in both forums. The headphone section over there has had

some activity. I was hoping someone would bring in a Polk Ultrafocus.

 

My Stax collection is much smaller now. I do enjoy having different cans to rotate through to keep things fresh.

I have put flats with the quarter mod on the RS! and that combo seems to work for me. The bowls don't

have the comfort, and flats without the quarter mod don't have the treble energy.

post #158 of 163

Did he not PM bomb like I told him to? Oh well. 

 

I'll be making the thread for planning Spring 2013 soon. Be sure to get in on it.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post

Sucks to be me:   I live in the DFW area and have only just now stumbled onto this thread - three days following a meet.  frown.gif

 

Hey, this is great!  I'm glad I stumbled onto this thread, just now!  I'm going to keep my eyes peeled so that I can make the next meet!  

 

Subscribed!

 

biggrin.gif

post #159 of 163

Roger that!  popcorn.gif

post #160 of 163

Ok guys,  I'm sorry I couldn't make it to the meet, but I had already booked RMAF/CanJam before this one was scheduled, so I missed out.

 

That being said, I got to hear a bunch of awesome gear at CanJam and just preordered the Cavalli Liquid Glass.  I already posted some impressions in another thread when prompted by MorbidToaster, but needless to say I loved it.  Perhaps I'll bring it down for the Austin meet this spring.  Anyway, I literally just made the preorder payment five minutes ago, so I thought I'd share with the local folk first.

post #161 of 163
Awesome! Congrats. biggrin.gif
post #162 of 163

Really great to hear. You won't get much better support than Alex. I should finally be getting my hands on one to listen to here in a week or so. 

 

I wasn't sure if you liked it that much, but obviously you did. Congrats. I'm jealous. I really want one for a preamp...and just as an excuse to fiddle with dynamics again.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzerdave View Post

Ok guys,  I'm sorry I couldn't make it to the meet, but I had already booked RMAF/CanJam before this one was scheduled, so I missed out.

 

That being said, I got to hear a bunch of awesome gear at CanJam and just preordered the Cavalli Liquid Glass.  I already posted some impressions in another thread when prompted by MorbidToaster, but needless to say I loved it.  Perhaps I'll bring it down for the Austin meet this spring.  Anyway, I literally just made the preorder payment five minutes ago, so I thought I'd share with the local folk first.

post #163 of 163
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