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King Sound Emperor: New Electrostatic Headphones! - Page 29

post #421 of 662

I've been held up at gunpoint to paste my impressions, so here you go:

 

 

Spent some time at the dealer's place with the KS amps for about an hour.  The SS amp sounded better to me.  More control, blacker background, etc.  The tube amp sounded wimpier.  SS amp got really hot near the top...I think they're gonna have to look at more adequate heatsinking.  Both amps were RCA input only (SS had a loop out as well).  He popped the top off the tube amp to change the tubes, so I got a peak at that at least.  2x 12AX7, 4x EL84, and 1x dunno.  I'm pretty sure it was some kind of rectifier tube. ??? 6-something-something-L I believe.

Looks-wise, the headphones scream MADE IN CHINA.  The plastic is really cheap toy stuff and I wouldn't try to bend them much.  The positive to that is they're super light and quite comfortable on my head.  I don't know if somebody with a bigger head can wear these without snapping the headband though.  Pad material feels decent (better than ESP950), and they're rather large in diameter so my ears don't really touch anything.  Again, comfy.  Cups don't have much travel to move up and down, but can swivel from side to side freely so you can fold them flat if needed (think Grado pizza box).  Cups don't really seem to be able to tilt much...it looks like they should but I don't want to break them.  Cable and connector both pretty nice.

You can't really see the stator design unless you hold it up to a pretty bright light.  Looks to be standard perforated metal, hole diameter about 60% size of those on the grill.  They're also using pinwheel/spoke bracing as found on the SR-Omega/SR-009.  Think 009 brace but with a quarter-size hole in the middle and 12 spokes.

I've spent some time comparing the KingSounds to a LNS, both driven from a T1S.  As the hours passed I definitely preferred the LNS.  My biggest complaint with the KS is that they sound super laid back.  I noticed this the first time I auditioned them, and ended up having to play them a lot louder than I normally listen.  At these higher levels, I noticed quite a bit of compression on loud passages...the drivers didn't seem to like being pushed that much.  I actually don't mind laid back phones at all, but these took it a little too far for me.  There's also a large difference in soundstaging between the two: the LNS has the typical Lambda soundstage, with decent size and really 'tall' imaging; the KS has a very natural soundstage with smaller but more believable sized instruments/sounds.  The KS are quite bass shy, with even less sub bass impact than the Stax which is saying something.  The KS also emphasize hissing/pops/ticks on the recording.  Comparing the mids of the headphones, the Stax is preferred once again.  The KS don't stray too far off neutral, but have a sort of echo'ey sound to the mids if that makes any sense.  Strings sound much more right on the LNS especially.  The KS are also one of the most veiled sounding electrostats I've heard.

I'm sure most people haven't heard the LNS before (plus it's OOP), so I'll try to compare the KS to my 207's later.  Note that the LNS is easily one of my favorite Lambdas.  I would say the KS actually sound somewhat like a less neutral ESP950 (more treble, less mids), with a slightly bigger soundstage and a bit less detail.

Also note that I was running the KS from normal bias voltage so there might be a little change in sound once I put the recommended voltage, though going by past experience it won't change much.

post #422 of 662

@ n3rdling , can we use the Kingsound with Stax amplifier at 580V?   will it destroy the KSA?

I wonder what is its performance with the higher voltage swing

post #423 of 662

I haven't tried yet.  I'd have to know the D/S gap to get a better idea.  KS amps are 450V bias, so close enough to be safe at lower volume levels.  I think as long as you don't crank up the volume too high (even instantaneous, as in large dynamic swings in the music file) you should be fine.  I don't think it'll make much difference to the sound though.

post #424 of 662

FWIW,, Kingsound doesn't recommend use with with pro-bias. 

post #425 of 662
I received shipping notice and will have mine on Monday.

Should I

1) listen to it, then take it apart
2) take it apart, then listen to it
3) listen to it while taking it apart
Edited by kevin gilmore - 8/16/13 at 6:01am
post #426 of 662
4) Listen to it while it's apart
post #427 of 662
Quote:
Originally Posted by kevin gilmore View Post

I received shipping notice and will have mine on Monday.

Should I

1) listen to it, then take it apart
2) take it apart, the listen to it
3) listen to it while taking it apart


Take a lot of photos, please.  ;)

post #428 of 662
I'm sure a few will do

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad Lust Envy

4) Listen to it while it's apart

This is actually my usual thing to do. I believe in open architecture.
Edited by kevin gilmore - 8/16/13 at 7:19am
post #429 of 662

While the jury is out on whether the KS work on Pro bias (I see no reason that they shouldn't be just fine) it is easy to lower the Pro bias voltage on most Stax amps and some DIY designs.  It will require soldering but it's just swapping one 1/2W resistor for another one. 

 

The ballast resistor is 5M on these so they are compatible with Stax in that regard. 

post #430 of 662
Quote:
Originally Posted by kevin gilmore View Post

I received shipping notice and will have mine on Monday.

Should I

1) listen to it, then take it apart
2) take it apart, then listen to it
3) listen to it while taking it apart

My vote is for #1...looking forward to your thoughts. popcorn.gif

post #431 of 662

1) listen to it, then take it apart soundwise..... a critical expose would be welcome.

2) take it apart physically, and critically expose the technical details and workmanship.

post #432 of 662
Moon audio site for the solid state amp lists 580v for the bias.
Anyone know if this is really true?
Any spec on capacitance of te headphones?
post #433 of 662

Specs from their web site

Quote:
Originally Posted by kevin gilmore View Post

Moon audio site for the solid state amp lists 580v for the bias.
Anyone know if this is really true?
Any spec on capacitance of te headphones?
ELECTROSTATIC HEADPHONES-H1
 
Audio Quality Frequency Response10Hz - 46kHz
 
Electrostatic Capacity140pF
 
Impedence113kΩ (at 10kHz)
 
Max. output sound level116dB
 
Physical Specifications Dimension (mm)220(W) * 40(H) * 250(D)
 
Sensitivity109dB(at 100Vrms)
 
Standard Bias voltage450Vdc
 
Weight0.4kg
 
Cable length2.5m
post #434 of 662

I just found that too.

 

I think that hooking them to pro bias stax jack is definitely going to damage the headphones.

quick calculations indicate that the diaphragm distance to stator distance is decreased

which matches the reduced voltage ranges of the 2 amplifiers they supply and the increased

capacitance of the headphones.

 

Lucky that the amplifiers I own have an adjustable bias output jack.

 

They are definitely going to sound thin on the low bias stax jacks.

 

moon audio needs to fix their specs on the solid state amp.

 

will measure tomorrow.


Edited by kevin gilmore - 8/18/13 at 7:35am
post #435 of 662

wow, just wow and I don't mean that in a good way.

http://gilmore.chem.northwestern.edu/m10.jpg

 

might as well be a tube amp. 47k plate resistors and .01uf  wima output caps.

STD1nk60 mosfet outputs. similar to sennheiser hev70.

no wonder there is no bass. 588 volt bias which does not match the specs.

lots of places in the middle to change resistors to get any bias voltage you want.

R108,R141,R142 in series directly off of B+, C122 directly to ground at output jack.

DO NOT EVER PLUG A SR007 or SR009 into this thing.

 

put the headphones on my T2 however and they really are pretty nice.

Now to spend some significant time listening to them vs equivalently priced stax.


Edited by kevin gilmore - 8/19/13 at 2:49pm
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