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Fostex TH600 Dynamic Headphones - Page 173

post #2581 of 2594
I just bought a th600 earlier today, and it should be here this weekend. I'll be fully honest, I haven't read through much of this thread. My purchase was definitely an impulse buy. I rather enjoyed the th900s on a demo, but refused to buy them because of their price and how fragile they seem, or maybe how not-delicate I handle my hd800s. Either way, I couldn't pass these th600s up since I've been looking for my perfect closed can for a while now. So I have a couple of questions before I dig straight into the thread...

1) why have th600s fluctuated so much in price over the last couple years?
2) there's so many opposite reviews on these, it seems like a love-hate headphone... any thoughts?
3) any build issues to be aware of? I always read about paint chips on the FS/FT forum...
post #2582 of 2594
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrscotchguy View Post

I just bought a th600 earlier today, and it should be here this weekend. I'll be fully honest, I haven't read through much of this thread. My purchase was definitely an impulse buy. I rather enjoyed the th900s on a demo, but refused to buy them because of their price and how fragile they seem, or maybe how not-delicate I handle my hd800s. Either way, I couldn't pass these th600s up since I've been looking for my perfect closed can for a while now. So I have a couple of questions before I dig straight into the thread...

1) why have th600s fluctuated so much in price over the last couple years?
2) there's so many opposite reviews on these, it seems like a love-hate headphone... any thoughts?
3) any build issues to be aware of? I always read about paint chips on the FS/FT forum...

As a former TH600 user, here are my answers to your questions.
1. I believed Fostex sets the RRP very high when they launched their TH series. IIRC, the TH900 was launched at US$2k, before they reduce it to $1.5k. Both the 900 and 600 appeared on Massdrop for a few times making the price fluctuations look serious.
2. If you can get used to their V-shaped/U-shaped sound signatures, you would love them.
To me, after 6 months of using the 600, I still can't get used to the "suck-out mids" as compared to my other headphones, i.e. HD800, LCD-X, MDR-Z7, ESW9Ltd.
3. No build issue during my 6 months ownership. To me the black magnesium cups look like it can take abuse better than the HD800 grill
post #2583 of 2594
Quote:
Originally Posted by akhyar View Post

As a former TH600 user, here are my answers to your questions.
1. I believed Fostex sets the RRP very high when they launched their TH series. IIRC, the TH900 was launched at US$2k, before they reduce it to $1.5k. Both the 900 and 600 appeared on Massdrop for a few times making the price fluctuations look serious.
2. If you can get used to their V-shaped/U-shaped sound signatures, you would love them.
To me, after 6 months of using the 600, I still can't get used to the "suck-out mids" as compared to my other headphones, i.e. HD800, LCD-X, MDR-Z7, ESW9Ltd.
3. No build issue during my 6 months ownership. To me the black magnesium cups look like it can take abuse better than the HD800 grill

Thanks for the feedback. My main headphone is the HE-4. It is said to be V-Shaped, so I probably won't have any issue adjusting. That said, my K7xx seem so mid-foward, si maybe I've been ruined, haha.
post #2584 of 2594

Okay... just came in the mail, and I have to run to work (late of course, cause I had to listen to a few songs)... 

 

These have a super fun signature. 10 minutes is not enough to peg anything down, but first impressions are good.  I can see if anyone had a brighter amp, these could be a bit on the fatiguing side.  Luckily for me, I have an Audio-GD amp and it's super warm and musical.  Perfect pairing.  I have to say, the bass is almost as good as my HE-4 when perfectly driven (Balanced from Oppo HA-1).  Bonus, these do not sound like closed cans to my ears!

 

I will most likely be keeping these... damn you Headfi... look what you did it to my wallet again!

post #2585 of 2594

I love mine. I had the AH-dxxx swivel problem on them, though. :/ So now they're held together with a lot of shoelaces. Sound great, though! 

post #2586 of 2594
I'm really impressed with these. I'm not a basshead, but it seems like these can with certain generes just show off. They are incredibly fun and forgiving with movies but are horrible with podcasts. The bass is so pronounced that the "P"s and "T"s are unbearable.

That said, even on music without bass presence, the weight of the bass seems to add something to the atmosphere. I need to try it on my styles of music, but I keep getting distrated bass-forward styles I'm not used to.
post #2587 of 2594

After incredibly exhaustive testing of many headphones I bought a pair of these about 6 weeks ago. I very rarely buy new headphones - up until 6 weeks ago I'd continually stuck with my PXC300 from 2008. I still use those for my computer. Anyway, I can't ever see myself changing headphones now. The TH600 are superb with classical and to be honest I would not even know these were a closed design. Comfort is superb and build quality appears to be a step up from anything I have seen before.

 

I did audition the TH900 at the same time and the budget could have stretched to them if I thought they were worthwhile. However I object to products such as these with fragile looking high gloss finishes because they simply don't go the distance, especially with a headphone that by necessity gets a huge amount of handling. Apart from that, I did not think the improvement with classical music in the TH900 was sufficient to justify the extra cost. If anything, with the equipment I used for the audition, the difference was actually negligible.

 

The only thing I wish is that the cable was detachable. As a big fan of Wireworld cable I now see they actually make headphone cables and this would have been the only upgrade / mod I would have been interested in. But I'm not keen on the surgery required. A pity, as I think using those new Wireworld cables would help a lot given how nice those cables work for speakers and as analogue interconnects.

post #2588 of 2594

Nice!

What other headphones did you test?

post #2589 of 2594
I broke down an bought a pair of Audeze micro-velour pads. Has anyone tried rolling these into the th-600?

I bought the pads mainly for my he-4, but now I'm wondering how big of a pain is it to swap the th-600 pads?
post #2590 of 2594
Quote:
Originally Posted by manbear View Post
 

Nice!

What other headphones did you test?

Absolutely heaps over an intense session lasting over much of a working day. From memory (I may have forgotten some) and in no particular order:

 

 

HD700

HD800

TH900

Oppo PM-1 (superb, brilliant but simply did not have the treble presence I wanted)

Oppo PM-2 (as above - if anything I preferred it for some strange reason - maybe I just thought the price / performance ratio was better)

AKG K812 (yes, this was the best headphone I have ever heard but out of my budget range unfortunately)

HiHiMan HE-560

Beyerdynamic T1

Alessandro MSPro

Shure SRH1840

HD650

HD600

Beyerdynamic T90

Audio Technica AD1000X

 

 

In the end, after about 4 hours I'd narrowed it down to the Oppo PM-2 and TH600. I spent the next 90 minutes alternating between them using a large number of short classical excerpts I'd specially compiled for the testing (designed to reveal weaknesses rather than glorify any of them). Obviously the PM2 and TH600 were very different and in the end I had to decide which flavour I would be happiest with long term. My belief was that I felt I would become bored with the laid back presentation of the Oppo over time and that when it came down to it, the much more intimate and present balance of the TH600 was much closer to my traditional way of listening using a high quality monitor.

 

Equipment used was a FiiO X5 running through SPDIF output to a Sennheiser HDVD800. 

 

And although I have no relationship to Minidisc Australia other than being a happy customer I really have to thank them for allowing to literally spend an entire day at the new storefront in Chatswood auditioning anything I could see for as long as I wanted. Was by far the best audio buying experience in my life because for the first time I could actually leave a shop with a product I had thoroughly tested and was 100% satisfied with.

 

In an ideal world I'd own the TH600, TH900 and Oppo PM-1 (or 2). The TH900 for special occasions to be handled by gloved hands only and the Oppo PM-1 for those perfectly balanced modern high res classical recordings. But the TH600 is the best middle of the road approach and does everything well no matter what you throw at it.


Edited by ADD - Yesterday at 9:08 am
post #2591 of 2594
@ADD

I haven't listened to any of Oppo's headphones, but to me, the TH600 sounds quite open and has a great soundstage with pretty great separation, giving it almost a layering effect for different instruments vs vocals. I'm curious how you'd compare soundstage between the two!

I'm interested in the PM series (down the road), so they have a noticeable improvement in soundstage width over the th600? What about instrument separation?

Note, I haven't played around with any of my other dacs/amps with my th600, just my AudioGD since I've been so satisfied with the pairing... to me, the th600 sounds like an open headphone with exceptionally great bass.

I might need to test out my Bushmaster and compare it to my more spacious headphones (hd800 and he-4) before making blanket statements.. the bushmaster dac/amp is known for its airy and holographic-like soundstage, which makes it a better tasting ground than my AudioGD, which is more intimate.

Can anyone comment on how well the TH600 scales, or is it just about synergy?
post #2592 of 2594

I think the soundstaging of the Oppo phones is slightly superior and they do extremely well with that "layering" effect you mentioned, but I think it would need very open, detailed solid state amplification to achieve that (the Oppo and TH600 really seemed to like the Sennheiser DAC/AMP which I would describe as very neutral, detailed and fast). But I really think in the end it comes down to synergy. There is no way I'd be pairing, for example, the Oppo with a dark, warm and cuddly tube amp whereas I think the TH600 could be happier with a much greater range of amplification.

post #2593 of 2594
If I get a chance in the next week or two, my local hifi shop has a Oppo HA-1, I'll see how it pairs with my th600! That's about the most neutral and balanced DAC/amp I've personally come across.
post #2594 of 2594

Well I was impressed with the Sennheiser amp at any rate. I can't say I have heard that many high quality headphone amps but that one seemed to do everything well. It might not have had an ultimate sense of scale like my Musical Fidelity M1 but I think a lot of that was related to the source. Despite using the digital output of the FiiO I just don't think a portable player like that can really compare to a high quality desktop source like a Rega CD player. Still, I am seriously thinking of getting the HDVA600 (I don't really need a DAC section as my source is a Rega Apollo-R).

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