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The diary entries of a little girl in her 30s! ~ Part 2 - Page 287

post #4291 of 21392
Quote:
Originally Posted by Achmedisdead View Post

We're always open to suggestions....wink.gif


Hmmmm

...............

.....................

freaky February maybe?

post #4292 of 21392
Quote:
Originally Posted by MuppetFace View Post

 

Oh, and the Tzar 350 is here. So far I'm actually really impressed despite my ears being in pain somewhat lol.

Everyone on the appreciation thread is throwing the word neutral around. From your listening impressions would you call it neutral or would you call it a treble happy analytical (you know overly bright and cold with a metallic tinge) with no bass authority? Oh, and is there a big spike somewhere in the highs like a couple of people have reported?

post #4293 of 21392

The Putting of Things On and In Ears in 2012

 

 

 

gotted:

UE TF10

Porta Corda III

Red Giant A03

Heir Audio A.4

Sony CD 3000

RSA SR-71B

wires, oh so many wires

Hidition NT 6 Pro

another iPod

 

situations:

I began a new job shortly (4 days) before the start of 2012. The variety of places I'd be working -- open and semiprivate offices, as well as my home and the occasional hotel room -- made earphones seem a good idea again -- smallness and good isolation counts for a lot more than the aversion towards IEMs that I'd had over the past few years.

 

Also, there was an extended trip to South Korea near the end of the year.

 

In case further reading is hard and/or unappealing:

2012 was a year of portable audio for me.

 

700

 

 

 

happened and thinked:

It seemed like a good time to get into customs. Latching on to the diary thread floating party, and Heir Audio's initial splash on Head-fi, got me interested in IEMs generally and customs in particular. I put in an order for the 4.A shortly after the New Year, and also picked up a Tri.Fi 10 to tide me over.

 

The TF 10 is... nice. It's hard to say more than that. I haven't bothered with it in any memorable way after the A.4 arrived. The scooped out middle and general softness works better than that description implies, but I found myself cranking the volume a little higher than I'm comfortable with to hear what I was expecting to hear. It probably works better with an appropriate amp or in ears that are happy with loud music. Otherwise, sonically it fills a middle ground between the Heir 4.A and Red Giant A03 but without the quality of execution either of them provides.

 

Early in the year TTVJ found some new old stock Meier Porta Corda IIIs and let them go for a song. I picked up one out of a combination of curiosity over Jan Meier's amps and an expectation that I'd be shipping my UHA-6S back to Leckerton for the iPad compatibility fix. Although that didn't happen until almost six months later. The construction is clearly from a past era: Plastic case, tiny volume/power knob and an included belt clip (!) all point to this having been built for expectations other than current trends in mobile hi-fi. Inside, the guts are solid and robust. The Porta Corda III is an odd beast in some ways: It tends to make non-bassy IEMs sound a little soft and bassy relative to the UHA-6S; but bassy IEMs like the TF10 seem to tighten up and balance out a bit, which I attribute in part to the crossfeed diminishing perceived bass impact. The amp is really made for full-size portable cans, though; even on low gain, its most comfortable listening level for me with any IEM is where the volume pot begins its sweep, where channel imbalances are to be expected. I usually use this amp with an impedance adaptor connected to the iPod's LOD to drop the input signal.

 

In fact somebody could probably make decent book custom-building LODs with T-pads in them to lower the output signal. Get on that, somebody.

 

In March I breezed through the headphone meet in Charlotte, a little too wired up on caffeine and probably getting on everybody's nerves. There was lots of good stuff to be tried, like the literal fistsful of electrostatic headphones, from the Stax 202 to an HE-60.

 

700

I also briefly tried the ED 10 and didn't hear the treble that made it famous, but odds are good I wasn't going to anyway, given the system, its recabling (it was part of Moon Audio's demo table) and the room being quite noisy. I preferred Ultrasone's Sig Pro to the ED 10 at the moment, for ineffable reasons that could probably be easily overturned if I had gone about listening to things in a less frantic way. The day also provided me the opportunity to try all of Ray Samuels' portable amps with my iPod and 4.A, not to mention the opportunity to drop Ray's SR-009 but fortunately not harm it.

 

700

A fellow head-fier learned that there is no dark side of the moon; it's all dark.

 

Charlotte's head-fiers hosted an awesome show, and I only wish I could have spent more time there with fewer distractions. There's another meet in a couple weeks, and I hope to attend.

 

Red Giant hove into view at some point during the year. tomscy's posts about the company and their designs intrigued me greatly and I landed the A03 as soon as I could. It's a weirdly spacious sounding thing, one of the most immersive IEMs I've heard (headphones, for that matter) and making up for many of its shortcomings -- but the fit is so problematic. If Red Giant can overcome the problems in their first line of products, they're really going to have some giant killers. So to speak.

 

Got a good deal on an RSA SR-71 B, and it's kinda-sorta my new favorite portable amp -- it's good but not necessarily worth the price when used in unbalanced mode, considering the proliferation of new amps in the market this past year. In balanced mode, though, the SR-71 B gave the 4.A a sound you could swim in. I've said elsewhere that it's tubey to the UHA-6S's transistory. Which is not a reliable comparison to make (not least because they're both solid state, but mainly because not many readers will have heard the better tubed audio setups that make the comparison meaningful), but kind of gets you in the ballpark of the nature of their difference; where the Leckerton's literalness sometimes fails the music, the RSA is better at relaying the spirit of it. Maybe more on that eventually.

 

My only significant home audio acquisition happened over the summer -- a Sony CD 3000. The two most surprising things are its appearance and its demanding nature -- I hadn't expected it to be as large as it is; the huge grey cups make them look more like industrial or shooting range ear protectors. I've never experienced the CD 3000 with its original earpads, and...


Sorry, it's time to break for a public rant about earpads.

Hey Japanese headphone manufacturers! Yes, you there, Sony and, well, a few other of you! I've got thirty and forty year old German-made headphones with pleather pads whose surface materials are still soft and intact. I've never had a Sony headphone whose pads lasted six years without flaking apart and sprinkling magic toxic-seeming black particles on everything they touch, such as ears and hair. I've got an old Audio-Technica electret headphone that I would use if it didn't shed like a mangy dog.

Stop doing that

It does not make me want to buy more of your stuff new, at retail prices, when I have to assume they've got the shelf life of an off-vintage wine.


Okay, back to the year in review.

...I assume the CD 3000's original pads were softer and did a better job of conforming to the contours of the skull around the ears. I'd love to try these with a set of good leather oversized pads. Introducing them to my home stereo was interesting, too; they sounded harsh until I shook some bugs out of my home stereo setup. With everything dialed in, these are a treat, providing detailed spaciousness that the HE-6 lacks, albeit without the physicality and range that the HiFiMan has -- I can feel bass impact in my chest with the HE-6, a phenomenon the CD 3000 can't replicate. They complement each other well.

 

Incidentally, until I got the CD 3000 all happy-sounding, my favorite home listening setup this year was the Heir 4.A driven by the Violectric HPA-100. Not the most technically excellent but certainly the most amiable, making it easy to enjoy music all day without noticing much of anything in the way.

 

I got into cable-building in about as big a way as I could manage. Honing my technique has led to a reliable signature style of ugly and tenous cables. Despite all, the super-compact LOD for the iPod and the silver-plated-copper teflon wire for the 4.A ended up being keepers. A particular TRS plug from Radio Shack wins the Timex award for taking a licking and continuing to tick; where Neutrik plugs tend to withstand a limited amount of resoldering until they're ruined, the Shack's plug has proven to withstand anything short of arc welding. Like old Toyota pickups, they're pricey and ugly and bear up under egregious abuse. Unlike a certain manufacturer's IEM plugs...

 

400

 

I don't feel like my 4.A really came into its own until I made it a cable out of teflon-jacketed silver-plated copper. The 4.A sounds different through their SPC wire when compared to their all-copper RSA-terminated cable, as well as through their stock TRS-terminated cable. Consider me continuing to straddle the fence regarding the relevance of wire material in audio (there are aspects aside from the wire that can matter), but I can tell a difference and that's about all there is to say about it. I've got some spools of wire at my arm that will become cables for the NT 6 Pro, hopefully starting this afternoon.

 

I roached an iPod by building a homemade LOD backwards. Fortunately GameStop gave me a good trade-in allowance on the iPod (it was in pristine condition otherwise) and its successor, beat-down and functional, now sports a 120 GB SSD and will be getting a battery transplant some time soon as well. As far as I can tell, both iPods sounded identical, but solid state storage improves the user experience immensely. People are experimenting with even more intricate storage hacks for the iPod 5G series -- if they come to fruition, expect to hear about 500 GB iPods some time in the coming months.

 

Capping off the year: The Hidition NT 6 Pro. I had the rare opportunity to visit Hidition and meet the designer in person, and tried both the NT 6 and 6 Pro and decided on the 6 Pro, with silicone tips. In lieu of my own long-pending writeup, I can happily refer you to average_joe's review; my differences with his opinions are in details which may have as much to do with our separate tastes as with Hidition possibly having continued to refine the design since he received his second set. It's become my mainstay IEM, as much for its construction as its sound quality -- The (optional) silicone canals and added acrylic fill makes them ideal IEMs for the workplace and when traveling -- the larger tips also make it more difficult to get them in and out quickly, so wearing them is not so awesome on workdays when people are repeatedly dropping by your desk, or if you have to equalize your ear pressure frequently on a flight. Also, the stock (for foreign orders) cable is incredibly microphonic.

 

700

The Hidition also proved to be an odd player, amp-wise: Clear and razor-sharp with the Leckerton UHA-6S, but with a space that has a distinct emphasis on the left and right extremes at the expense of the middle. The RSA brings the soundstage under control at the expense of the sense of detail; I found myself cranking the amp louder than I really should some times. The Meier amp brings almost the best of both worlds while also bringing forward the midrange a little more, yet at the same time it's just not the amp I reach for first, and without putting more thought into it I couldn't say for certain why.

 

wrapping-upping and future prospects:

iPod -> RSA -> Heir is my Tinker to Evers to Chance. In 2013 it looks like the team will be breaking up for a while, but they should reunite by Spring. iPod -> Leckerton -> Hidition became my go-to listening system for the final quarter of the year but I still don't know what to make of it, in a way. It has extension and low-level detail that the Heir does not; it is spacious and intricate in ways the Heir can only wish it was -- but the NT 6 Pro is not as easy a swim.

 

Home audio is beginning to interest me again; DACs in particular, but also planar headphones and maybe another vintage receiver. First on the list is to unload a lot of home equipment I'm not using any more, to free up space for anything that might come along.

 

By head-fier terms, it's a pretty simple agenda. Other than this, I plan to listen to more music. That's the point, anyway.

 

Happy New Year, y'all.


Edited by ardgedee - 1/1/13 at 9:53am
post #4294 of 21392
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgray91 View Post


Daddy Warbuck??? what.
@CdC, how is your search for some Warhammer 40k books goes?

Ouhff, each time I glance at that page with the myriads of ebooks, I get overwhelmed by the sheer amount of reading, so I keep postponing it. 

 

I think I need to just download some book and start somewhere, and go from there. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mutabor View Post

 

I feel that if you don't have strong agendas then you are not really addicted to this hobby or you are not cool in this hobby. Even when MF says that she is not an audiophile then there is something crazy about her ever growing collection. Neutrality means that you are rather not really into the hobby. 

 

I know that I will never be cool here because I'm satisfied with little that I have ( I don't mind to upgrade though). And I don't really care.

The thing is, I think, that a lot of people here take their gear personally. Each time there is some criticism to be said about a certain headphone, the fanboys light up because you're not actually critisizing the headphones, but insulting the fanboys themselves. This is of course very true in any other consumer based community as well, with a very prominent example in gaming and the console (and PC) fanboy wars.

 

Now, I don't mind a good debate, at all, but when it goes to extremes it gets silly, and when it becomes the norm rather than the exception, it's just annoying for the readers (I don't think the participants really care TBH). People I liked when I joined this place, have turned out to be the same kind of people, saying stuff like "A ****s all over B" or "C is just pure garbage and you get HIV from listening to it" (there are some *very* "known" members of head-fi that seem to do this as well). It's just stupid, but then again, as said, I think this is more a case of me having to adjust to this type of lingo and just forget about balanced, respectful and mature discussions and debates.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ardgedee View Post

 

Happy New Year, y'all.

Happy new year to you too my friend. What do you think about Cosmic Ears? They seem very cheap, and people seem to enjoy their CIEMs. I'm maybe thinking of maybe perhaps kind of contemplating that if I ever were to plan on thinking about trying CIEMs...then maybe they could be worth a shot? Perhaps? Maybe?


Edited by Coq de Combat - 1/1/13 at 10:23am
post #4295 of 21392

@ard: I enjoyed reading that!

 

@warren: just the concept.  I think I'm better off sticking with Sci-Fi people I'm oddly attracted to.

post #4296 of 21392
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coq de Combat View Post

Ouhff, each time I glance at that page with the myriads of ebooks, I get overwhelmed by the sheer amount of reading, so I keep postponing it. 

I think I need to just download some book and start somewhere, and go from there. 

Hmm, I can see the problem. Sorry about that. I suggest starting with any of the Space Marines books, since that's what most first timers are interested in: the hulking superhuman in power armor wielding chainsword in righteous fury.
post #4297 of 21392
Quote:

Originally Posted by driver 8 View Post

 

I think you missed my post where the ellusive hum came back the next day.

 

As it was here one day, gone the other, and seems completely unrelated to the Stello now, I'm fairly sure it's just something going on elsewhere that the ECBA itself is picking up. 

 

Switching to the Stello has, however, stopped my DAC from being all buggy at random.  So it would seem that you had a better USB connection going than I did.  As for whether or not the Stello has improved my SQ... idk.  I get this feeling that things are more focused, but it's subtle.  I hate A/B testing lest I'd get another USB cable, plug it in, and switch modes to verify this.

 

I still have that Aqvox USB power dealie on the way so there'll be more voodoo trickery to come.

 

Yeah, I did miss that.  I do agree with you that it may just be your amp if the Stello didn't fix the problem.  Have you tried tube rolling?  Maybe one of your tubes is picking something up?

post #4298 of 21392

@Driver8

How about just moving the amp to another place in the room or another room altogether. It could be a bit of a hassle finding a good place where it doesn't pick up the hum but a far better compromise then throwing unneeded bones down on new tubes in the hope it fixes the problem.

post #4299 of 21392
Quote:
Originally Posted by driver 8 View Post

 

@warren: just the concept.  I think I'm better off sticking with Sci-Fi people I'm oddly attracted to.

 

Ahh, I gotcha.  So maybe something like Federation February would be more fun along those lines?  wink.gif

post #4300 of 21392
Quote:
Originally Posted by warrenpchi View Post

 

Ahh, I gotcha.  So maybe something like Federation February would be more fun along those lines?  wink.gif

 

700

post #4301 of 21392

I'm going to try another 6SN7 I already own next time I use it and maybe order a backup pair of 6X4 rectifiers because they're really cheap.  The PX-4's, though, are too expensive to just buy another pair for the hell of it.  I also don't think it's either of them because the hum doesn't belong to a particular channel (they're in a pair because they correspond with the 2 channels... right?), rather it's centered every time.  The PX4's were also thoroughly tested.  Like, they came with measurements and ****.  So maybe it's the single driver tube?

 

Honestly, given the fact that it happens .0005% of the time I'm listening (2 seconds every hour or so), I don't care enough to start ******* with it a lot or send it back.  It's just strange, is all.  I'll email Craig if anything else starts happening, though.

 

@DF: I'm really particular about where I set this stuff up.


Edited by driver 8 - 1/1/13 at 3:13pm
post #4302 of 21392
Thread Starter 

Just placed my order for the JH16 Pro Freq-Phase. Got it for less than the price of what the JH13 Pro normally goes for thanks to the holiday sale. Went with all "sucker punch" shells and faces with white model designations.

 

 

1000

 

 

Yeah, I know the JH13 is more accurate. I don't care.

 

Feeling pretty good about this; turns out one of JHA's recommended audiologists is fairly close by, and hopefully that will translate into a better experience and better ear impressions and, ultimately, a better fit and sound. It's actually been something of a desire of mine to find a really good audiologist. I think head-fiers could benefit to be in such a professional relationship: getting one's hearing tested and ears professionally cleaned annually can be a major plus.

 

Incidentally, I discovered something very scary. Apparently Logitech has smaller tuning boxes now and will ship them out to customers, so now they don't have to go to a service center. Which means the UEPRM may be closer than I thought...


Edited by MuppetFace - 1/1/13 at 4:06pm
post #4303 of 21392
Quote:
Originally Posted by MuppetFace View Post

Just placed my order for the JH16 Pro Freq-Phase. Got it for less than the price of what the JH13 Pro normally goes for thanks to the holiday sale. Went with all "sucker punch" shells and faces with white model designations.

 

Yeah, I know the JH13 is more accurate. I don't care.

 

I don't think you're allowed to say that without clearance from the summit-fi tribunal.

 

You should have gotten lenticular eye artwork for the shell plates.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MuppetFace View Post

Incidentally, I discovered something very scary. Apparently Logitech has smaller tuning boxes now and will ship them out to customers, so now they don't have to go to a service center. Which means the UEPRM may be closer than I thought...

 

Scary indeed. Although I'd probably be inclined to get the tuning done at an audiologist's anyway, on the principle that what I lose in convenience would be made up for with closer attention from experts.

post #4304 of 21392

Does anyone else here who ones one or both of the Senn HD6x0's ever get a tingle down their back when listening to them?  I get it from both of them, depending on what I'm listening to, and have never experienced anything quite the same with another headphone.  It's like someone's whispering in my ear -- kind of seductive, really, and completely unintended I'm sure.

post #4305 of 21392

Man oh man, hang out on this thread long enough and you people can really change a guy. All the tea talk a few pages past has lead to a new trend on this side of the screen. It's currently 10:23 PM and it's -11 C and snowing outside. It's been a quiet New Years day of doing much of nothing except taking my elderly folks out for dinner. It's become a family tradition and every New Years day we all dress up in our Sunday church cloths and go out for a nice dinner together. I spent the rest of the day periodically checking in on head-fi threads and surfing around on the outer edges of the web. Feeling a little bored I decided to listen to some tunes. Me listening to tunes isn't anything new to report whats new though is the way I'm now choosing to do it. Currently I have my Studio V 3rd Anniv hooked up to my Westone 4's playing some nice uplifting music from the Best Of Acoustic Alchemy album. Beside me I have an overly large mug filled with English Breakfast tea. For whatever reason I've now incorporated tea toting into my mellowing out to music regiment. You guys are such wonderfully bad influences. i wonder what will be next....throw on some Slayer and kick back with some Chai maybe.

 

 


Congrats on the JH16's Romy. May you headbang yourself into a coma with them on biggrin.gif


Edited by DigitalFreak - 1/1/13 at 8:35pm
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