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Head-Fi Buying Guide (Over-Ear Headphones)
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The diary entries of a little girl in her 30s! ~ Part 2 - Page 724post #10846 of 217604/30/13 at 6:17am
Gear mentioned in this thread:post #10847 of 217604/30/13 at 6:21ampost #10848 of 217604/30/13 at 6:24am
Troll level: wink
Corrupting threads left and right!
I'm not going to further defile MF's thread responding to you.
Edited by Achmedisdead - 4/30/13 at 6:25ampost #10849 of 217604/30/13 at 6:29ampost #10850 of 217604/30/13 at 6:39amThread StarterQuote:
AFAIK the Jade II is still quite a ways off as Fang wants to take his time with it and get it right the first time. Definitely a good thing, as the original was plagued with major quality control issues and went through several different iterations.** Yet despite being this ghastly thing cobbled together by a dude in his home in China, it's still one of the nicest sounding headphones evaar, so I'm definitely looking forward to a follow-up with better build quality. It could be a "game changer" or whatever lingo one wants to use.
A new planar magnetic flagship beyond the HE-6 is still an exciting prospect for me, as I'm quite interested in the development of new approaches and their implementation, especially in planars. Given the expanding infrastructure of Head-Direct and their increasingly automated approach however, I must confess to being a little concerned; the launch of the HE-400 for instance was quite shaky until the various wrinkles could be ironed out. Fang really stands behind his products however, and he tirelessly works to correct everything that needs correcting, so I'm sure it'll work out either way. I'm especially curious as to what the price point will be, especially given the increasing prices among competition.
Speaking of which, the LCD-4 will probably be out sooner rather than later, and I think that's going to dictate future trends in this area more than just about anything else. Whereas the LCD-3 was treated as an upgrade from the outset, hints on the LCD-4 suggest it's going to be a major step forward (at least in the minds of the Audez'e duo), so the price could be quite steep. $3,000 USD? Possibly $4,000? Along with the Abyss AB-1266 and its $5,500 MSRP, it seems like things are only going to be more ridiculous in the coming years. I mean a while back $200 was considered mid-fi, but now we're seeing stuff like the LCD-2 and HE-500 being labeled as such. Meanwhile $99 earphones sound better than $400 flagship in-ear offerings from a few years back. In summation of all of this: I suppose these days less will buy you more, but more will buy you less..
** The Jade's lineage is quite fascinating to me. I believe it goes something like this: the original pre-production EH-1.2 looked quite similar to the HE90, and when it was shown off at trade shows the feedback involved a lot of comments about it being a knock-off Chinese HE90. To try and differentiate his product more, Mr. He (the designer behind HeAudio) changed the look of the production model so that it had these rather bizarre light wood-trimmed cups, renaming it the EH-1.3. I've been trying to track down a pair of these to go along with my other versions of the Jade, but they're pretty elusive since there were issues early on for many customers. They were problematic enough for Mr. He to go back to the original blueprints and release the EH-1.2B as a replacement for customers who sent in their 1.3s. This looks more Orpheus-like, but it has a gold trim around the edge of the cups. The final revision was the Jade which had the best (relatively speaking) build quality of the bunch and looked the most refined. These changes all seem to be on the level of build quality and aesthetics, and the sound from one to the next is apparently the same more or less.post #10851 of 217604/30/13 at 7:20amElectrostats are an interesting technology -- in many ways it's the easiest headphone to genuinely build from scratch using easily-sourced raw materials. Dynamic and BA headphones are dependent on working parts sourced from elsewhere, electrodynamics are best made using dedicated assembly tools, and other technologies are inherently limited (electret) or require novel workarounds (piezo).
The attention to detail, trimming and tuning necessary to turn out a working electrostat is easier for a hobbyist to do, too; they're building this as a hobby, after all, and so all the time spent on the effort is rewarding for as long as improvements continue. This tends to be mislead a lot of home craftsmen (in all kinds of fields) who end up underestimating the actual cost of building their things commercially; the hundreds of hours a hobbyist spends on a stat (or an amp, or a bookcase) is not a writeoff, it's productive effort. Spending hundreds of hours -- or even dozens of hours if the product's going to sell in the low thousands or high hundreds -- on each headphone for sale would be ruinous.post #10852 of 217604/30/13 at 7:27am
I finally started my custom rifle project. Just bought an old Remington Model 30/Enfield action to be the basis for it. Once it comes in, it'll get sent off to the gunsmith for the next 2 years to build it. It took me forever to find a barrel-maker for the oddball caliber. And wood prices are hideously expensive...post #10853 of 217604/30/13 at 7:39amThread StarterQuote:Originally Posted by ardgedee
Electrostats are an interesting technology -- in many ways it's the easiest headphone to genuinely build from scratch using easily-sourced raw materials. Dynamic and BA headphones are dependent on working parts sourced from elsewhere, electrodynamics are best made using dedicated assembly tools, and other technologies are inherently limited (electret) or require novel workarounds (piezo).
The attention to detail, trimming and tuning necessary to turn out a working electrostat is easier for a hobbyist to do, too; they're building this as a hobby, after all, and so all the time spent on the effort is rewarding for as long as improvements continue. This tends to be mislead a lot of home craftsmen (in all kinds of fields) who end up underestimating the actual cost of building their things commercially; the hundreds of hours a hobbyist spends on a stat (or an amp, or a bookcase) is not a writeoff, it's productive effort. Spending hundreds of hours -- or even dozens of hours if the product's going to sell in the low thousands or high hundreds -- on each headphone for sale would be ruinous.
Yup. Like I said a while back, you can source a lot of parts for DIY stats from places like Home De[s]pot. The results from this can often times be quite good, too. The tricky part is building up any level of refinement. The Jade for instance has some of the thickest (maybe the thickest? It's up there w/ the Koss) diaphragms of any commercial stat. Generally speaking, the thinner you can make them the better your results, so it's kind of crazy that the Jade sounds as good as it does, ie. even better than stuff like the HE60 and numerous Stax. Really the problem with the Jade wasn't the stators themselves, but the surrounding frame. There were no dustcovers to speak of and so they were exposed to the elements and would get dried out which resulted in crackling. The assembly was made of poorly treated wood so it was fragile and would break. The way it was all setup, you couldn't really take it apart easily to work with it. It was kind of built like an old Spanish guitar and not a headphone lol.
I guess what I'm getting at is that it's "easy to pick up but difficult to master." What makes Stax so special is the attention to detail and finesse they've mastered over decades. They have environmentally controlled rooms above and beyond anything you'd need for a dynamic headphone, technicians who massage the diaphragms by hand for hours, and they can produce some of the thinnest materials of anyone out there.post #10854 of 217604/30/13 at 7:44amYup. I have family in the custom lumber industry and a brother in law who's a cabinetmaker. It would appall you, the numbers of people who think slow-dried hardwood should cost as much as commodity pine, or who think that a custom-built, filigreed black walnut bookcase should cost as much as anything from Ikea.post #10855 of 217604/30/13 at 8:13amQuote:Originally Posted by ardgedee
Yup. I have family in the custom lumber industry and a brother in law who's a cabinetmaker. It would appall you, the numbers of people who think slow-dried hardwood should cost as much as commodity pine, or who think that a custom-built, filigreed black walnut bookcase should cost as much as anything from Ikea.
That last bit amazes me. Even this early on in life, I recognise that essentially Ikea is the McDonald's of the furniture world. Expecting anything more is like expecting 3 Big Mac patties to be well-made steak.post #10856 of 217604/30/13 at 8:27ampost #10857 of 217604/30/13 at 8:29ampost #10858 of 217604/30/13 at 8:44ampost #10859 of 217604/30/13 at 8:50amHow do you call it when you watch or read something that causes discomfort or negative emotions exactly because it causes such emotions? It's different from masochism, but definitely related to it.
Just now I was watching the anime Aku no Hana. Using a Kafkaesque setting the show stimulates emotions of fear, anger and disgust. Yet I really like the show from an 'artistic perspective'. Why is that people tend to like watching such things? Is it because of empathy for the main character, or is sadism? That is, do we do perhaps like watching these things because we know they are not real, and like seeing situations where a fictional person is feeling really negative emotions just to assert that we are much better of?post #10860 of 217604/30/13 at 8:59am
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- The diary entries of a little girl in her 30s! ~ Part 2
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