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Technology or Ideology: Electrostatics vs Planar Magnetic

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 

I've been intrigued by electrostatic headphones and planar magnetic headphones but I have to admit that I have never actually listened to either. I guess that need not stop me from asking questions and seeking answers. So here goes...


1) Are planar magnetics similar to electrostatics except that stators are replaced by magnets and the diaphragm is magnetic instead of electrostatic?

2) Do electrostatics and orthodynamics produce a planar wavefront? Is better imaging a consequence of this?

3) Ignoring all other differences, how different are electrostatics and orthodynamics sonically? I can imagine some difference arising from the physics behind their operation [eletrostatic vs magnetic]

4) Despite a large diaphragm how is it that electrostatics are known for a "weaker" bass than orthodynamics? I'm basing this on independent reviews of Stax and Audedze headphones albeit by different people at different times. Question is with a similar sized diaphragm how would the bass differ in quality and quantity between the two technologies?

5) How different are the two types with regard to harmonic distortion content of the reproduced sound? I understand that this might irrelevant to the joy of listening but I want to satisfy my quest for knowledge as much as my love for music.

Thanks for anyone who can contribute. I greatly appreciate it.

post #2 of 2

I can't help much here as I've owned mostly planar magnetic hp's. I chimed in only to say that you get get on the list to audition the planar magnetic hifiman hp's from Justin at headamp.com. Then you can listen for yourself. 

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