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The (new) HD800 Impressions Thread - Page 32

post #466 of 14679

^^ Very informative.  How much does the DAC play a part in the sound coming from the Stratus? 

post #467 of 14679
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post

^^ Very informative.  How much does the DAC play a part in the sound coming from the Stratus? 

 

+1

Quote:
Originally Posted by fejnomit View Post

That thread in the pirate site is hearsay.  Notice that anyone commenting on the Stratus, first of all, doesn't actually own it.  They heard it at meets.  To me this explains a lot about the so-called muddy bass - when have open-backed phones ever transmitted their bass well in a large boomy room?  I have never once experienced this and - in stark contrast - feel that *bass mud* is the downfall of the EC sound... 

 

Second of all, they are talking about the Stratus with stock tubes.  When I first heard the BA with stock tubes I didn't want to buy it.  Then Craig rolled in the KR PX-4s and a very nice 6SN7 variant and it was a done deal.  So those listeners who have never tried the Status -> HD800 combination with various tubes should categorically NOT comment.  Simply changing the stock rectifier for the EML 5U4G, for instance, gives gorgeous, extended, detailed bass...  Not to mention what happens with better 2A3s...  And the notion that the S7 is some tube-rollers dream makes no sense to me.  You have a bunch of 6SN7s or 6SL7s.  And?  You better love that tube, or else...  To my hears that tube does no wonders for the HD800s.  It does not make them come to life...

 

And the accusation that "fanboys" have populated the Stratus thread is utter B*S*.  I don't see how the same accusation can't be made for the BA thread.  The poster then goes on to say that the Eddie Current 2A3 with BA heater/psu is sure to be the ultimate.  Who says?  Why?  Based on what? 

 

He is right about the output transformer playing a large role in the sound of the Stratus.  Same goes for the BA.  And the Electra-Print tone to me ears is inferior to the OPT chosen by Donald...  Also Solen caps sound to me quite dull and lifeless compared to the Jensen caps in the Stratus.   Point is, I would not let the EC *fanboys* turn you off from the Stratus - I would bring your HD800 to a meet to hear both if you can.  If you can't - and the only phone you're really looking to pair with an amp is the HD800 - then I would hands down choose the Stratus.  I would choose the Stratus for the LCD-3 as well, just with different tubes. 

 

Hope that helps...

Absolutely. I just mentioned the fan boyism and qualified it because I did not want to get lumped with those who originally posted it, since I called attention to the thread.

 

In any case, thanks fejnomit! This does help. Unfortunately I am on the East Cost and no one I am aware of has that amp to check out with my HD800. Bought the Sonett blind though and I am happy with it. For a while i was thinking of selling it but every time I plugged my fav cans (HD800 and K702) that the Sonett can handle I changed my mind and took it off FS threads. The price of the Stratus though makes it harder for me to buy it blind. I am also looking at the GSX mk2 for my HD800 -- which I have heard (Justin is few hours away from me) and thought that it had many things I am looking for to drive the HD800. With my current set up, I have a feeling that I have not squeezed out the last bit of performance out of my HD 800 -- even driven off my F3, which I really really like. Eventually, I would love to get the GS-X and the Stratus. For now, the feedback I get from all you Westerns is being recorded for future reference. Thanks!


Edited by Cante Ista - 3/3/13 at 11:35am
post #468 of 14679

I've had six DACs with the Stratus - I know, stupid, but hey...

And keeping in mind this is an HD800 thread, these comments go for those phones primarily:

 

They are:

 

Meitner M1

W4S Dac II Modded

 

PS Audio DAC III with Cullen Mods

Stello DA100

 

Eximus DP-1

Lampizator 5.4

 

The DACs in the top group worked better with both the Stratus and the BA with the HD800.  Their precision, objectivity and resolution provided the crystal clear core to the sound, then the Stratus and BA could layer in their tone.  Then the HD800s could transmit it all in perfect balance.  I have found these two DACs most helpful in comparing headphone amps and tubes with the HD800 because they import so little of their own sound.  Got rid of the Meitner because it was just too SS sounding to me, but the W4S is my go-to DAC for the Stratus with HD800 combo (although same goes for LCD-3)...

 

The middle group offers a bit more tone of their own and were very sweet with the Stratus and BA, but again, a bit more of their signature came through so it was harder to decipher which component was providing what...  The PS Audio wasn't great for the HD800 - too thin.  Not using those any more either...

 

The bottom two are my favorite DACs *over all* as stand-alones with just about anything.  Either of those feeding the Phonitor is heard to beat - and that combo with the HD800 is sublime.  In terms of tubes, however, I really like to hear my DHT output tubes and both of these DACS have much more of their own tube sound (the Lamp being literally tubed) and can end up blowing out the Stratus a little and fattening the bottom end of the HD800s a bit too much.  Like I said, I find myself using these two DACs more for my main speaker rig and my SS amps.  (The Lampizator into my Blue Circle monos feeding the K1000s or the HE-6s is *killer*). 

 

I guess if there were a formula it would be an interchange between tonal and neutral:

 

Neutral DAC -> Tube Amp -> High-Rez Phones

 

OR

 

More Musical DAC -> Neutral Amp -> More Musical Phones

 

As the HD800 falls into the top equation, the W4S Dac2 is my go-to DAC for them and the Stratus is go-to amp...

 

Hope that helps...

post #469 of 14679
Quote:
Originally Posted by fejnomit View Post

I've had six DACs with the Stratus - I know, stupid, but hey...

And keeping in mind this is an HD800 thread, these comments go for those phones primarily:

 

They are:

 

Meitner M1

W4S Dac II Modded

 

PS Audio DAC III with Cullen Mods

Stello DA100

 

Eximus DP-1

Lampizator 5.4

 

The DACs in the top group worked better with both the Stratus and the BA with the HD800.  Their precision, objectivity and resolution provided the crystal clear core to the sound, then the Stratus and BA could layer in their tone.  Then the HD800s could transmit it all in perfect balance.  I have found these two DACs most helpful in comparing headphone amps and tubes with the HD800 because they import so little of their own sound.  Got rid of the Meitner because it was just too SS sounding to me, but the W4S is my go-to DAC for the Stratus with HD800 combo (although same goes for LCD-3)...

 

The middle group offers a bit more tone of their own and were very sweet with the Stratus and BA, but again, a bit more of their signature came through so it was harder to decipher which component was providing what...  The PS Audio wasn't great for the HD800 - too thin.  Not using those any more either...

 

The bottom two are my favorite DACs *over all* as stand-alones with just about anything.  Either of those feeding the Phonitor is heard to beat - and that combo with the HD800 is sublime.  In terms of tubes, however, I really like to hear my DHT output tubes and both of these DACS have much more of their own tube sound (the Lamp being literally tubed) and can end up blowing out the Stratus a little and fattening the bottom end of the HD800s a bit too much.  Like I said, I find myself using these two DACs more for my main speaker rig and my SS amps.  (The Lampizator into my Blue Circle monos feeding the K1000s or the HE-6s is *killer*). 

 

I guess if there were a formula it would be an interchange between tonal and neutral:

 

Neutral DAC -> Tube Amp -> High-Rez Phones

 

OR

 

More Musical DAC -> Neutral Amp -> More Musical Phones

 

As the HD800 falls into the top equation, the W4S Dac2 is my go-to DAC for them and the Stratus is go-to amp...

 

Hope that helps...


Awesome! Very helpful! Thanks!beerchug.gif

post #470 of 14679
Quote:
Originally Posted by fejnomit View Post
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

 

That thread in the pirate site is hearsay.  Notice that anyone commenting on the Stratus, first of all, doesn't actually own it.  They heard it at meets.  To me this explains a lot about the so-called muddy bass - when have open-backed phones ever transmitted their bass well in a large boomy room?  I have never once experienced this and - in stark contrast - feel that *bass mud* is the downfall of the EC sound... 

 

Second of all, they are talking about the Stratus with stock tubes.  When I first heard the BA with stock tubes I didn't want to buy it.  Then Craig rolled in the KR PX-4s and a very nice 6SN7 variant and it was a done deal.  So those listeners who have never tried the Status -> HD800 combination with various tubes should categorically NOT comment.  Simply changing the stock rectifier for the EML 5U4G, for instance, gives gorgeous, extended, detailed bass...  Not to mention what happens with better 2A3s...  And the notion that the S7 is some tube-rollers dream makes no sense to me.  You have a bunch of 6SN7s or 6SL7s.  And?  You better love that tube, or else...  To my hears that tube does no wonders for the HD800s.  It does not make them come to life...

 

And the accusation that "fanboys" have populated the Stratus thread is utter B*S*.  I don't see how the same accusation can't be made for the BA thread.  The poster then goes on to say that the Eddie Current 2A3 with BA heater/psu is sure to be the ultimate.  Who says?  Why?  Based on what? 

 

He is right about the output transformer playing a large role in the sound of the Stratus.  Same goes for the BA.  And the Electra-Print tone to me ears is inferior to the OPT chosen by Donald...  Also Solen caps sound to me quite dull and lifeless compared to the Jensen caps in the Stratus.   Point is, I would not let the EC *fanboys* turn you off from the Stratus - I would bring your HD800 to a meet to hear both if you can.  If you can't - and the only phone you're really looking to pair with an amp is the HD800 - then I would hands down choose the Stratus.  I would choose the Stratus for the LCD-3 as well, just with different tubes. 

 

Hope that helps...

 

 

 

So instead of simply disagreeing with other's opinions you rather completely disregard their findings, nice.

 

I think you completely missed the context which things were said. Purrin never said the Stratus was just a muddy amp,

he was specifying in comparison to another amp.

Anyways, it was his findings and other's opinions and I just felt you were rude.

 

The only thing you got right was..each individual should hear both and decide for themselves, IMO.

 
post #471 of 14679
Quote:
Originally Posted by paradoxper View Post

Exactly. Also my ZDSE with Sophia 6SN7 has tighter bass, more impact, texture, and extension than any ss amp I've owned. FWIW.

-Daniel
post #472 of 14679
Quote:
Originally Posted by BournePerfect View Post


Exactly. Also my ZDSE with Sophia 6SN7 has tighter bass, more impact, texture, and extension than any ss amp I've owned. FWIW.

-Daniel

 

 

If this is the case - where is the harmonic distortion that tubes are know for?   

post #473 of 14679
Making magical mids.

biggrin.gif

-Daniel
Edited by BournePerfect - 3/3/13 at 2:32pm
post #474 of 14679
Quote:
Originally Posted by BournePerfect View Post


Exactly. Also my ZDSE with Sophia 6SN7 has tighter bass, more impact, texture, and extension than any ss amp I've owned. FWIW.

-Daniel

So it's the ultimate SS amp then? biggrin.gif

post #475 of 14679
Quote:
Originally Posted by third_eye View Post

So it's the ultimate SS amp then? biggrin.gif
Wouldn't be the first time that has been said about an EC amp. cool.gif Would love to hear a Stratus at some point too.

-Daniel
post #476 of 14679

 I tried getting through all the info on this thread and became saddened at the fact that my Lyr probably won't scale well with the HD800's. I was extremely close to grabbing a set to compliment the LCD2.2's, but have no intention on grabbing another desktop rig (at 3-4x the cost of the Bifrost/Lyr) to power the HD800's 'properly'. Someone please tell me I'm mistaken so I can justify the purchase.

post #477 of 14679
If you're enjoying it-what's the problem? Have peace of mind knowing when you upgrade the rest of your gear down the road, that the Senn will give back even more.

-Daniel
post #478 of 14679
Quote:
Originally Posted by fejnomit View Post

I've had six DACs with the Stratus - I know, stupid, but hey...

And keeping in mind this is an HD800 thread, these comments go for those phones primarily:

 

They are:

 

Meitner M1

W4S Dac II Modded

 

PS Audio DAC III with Cullen Mods

Stello DA100

 

Eximus DP-1

Lampizator 5.4

 

The DACs in the top group worked better with both the Stratus and the BA with the HD800.  Their precision, objectivity and resolution provided the crystal clear core to the sound, then the Stratus and BA could layer in their tone.  Then the HD800s could transmit it all in perfect balance.  I have found these two DACs most helpful in comparing headphone amps and tubes with the HD800 because they import so little of their own sound.  Got rid of the Meitner because it was just too SS sounding to me, but the W4S is my go-to DAC for the Stratus with HD800 combo (although same goes for LCD-3)...

 

The middle group offers a bit more tone of their own and were very sweet with the Stratus and BA, but again, a bit more of their signature came through so it was harder to decipher which component was providing what...  The PS Audio wasn't great for the HD800 - too thin.  Not using those any more either...

 

The bottom two are my favorite DACs *over all* as stand-alones with just about anything.  Either of those feeding the Phonitor is heard to beat - and that combo with the HD800 is sublime.  In terms of tubes, however, I really like to hear my DHT output tubes and both of these DACS have much more of their own tube sound (the Lamp being literally tubed) and can end up blowing out the Stratus a little and fattening the bottom end of the HD800s a bit too much.  Like I said, I find myself using these two DACs more for my main speaker rig and my SS amps.  (The Lampizator into my Blue Circle monos feeding the K1000s or the HE-6s is *killer*). 

 

I guess if there were a formula it would be an interchange between tonal and neutral:

 

Neutral DAC -> Tube Amp -> High-Rez Phones

 

OR

 

More Musical DAC -> Neutral Amp -> More Musical Phones

 

As the HD800 falls into the top equation, the W4S Dac2 is my go-to DAC for them and the Stratus is go-to amp...

 

Hope that helps...

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dleblanc343 View Post

I compared my HD800 (14793) with my two friends' (one ~800 and 1200's) as well as two models we have in stock in-store (20500's). That's a total of 5 HD800's head to head a/b'ing.

The results? They all sound the same with stock cables on. Mine changes a bit with my Q and my friend's with the black dragon is noticeably tamed; but I find it sacrifices detail.

For those who have previously owned and didnt like the phone and loves it this time around; you definitely changed components in your rig leading to the retry being more enjoyable.

The HD800 is the flagship that changes the most along with various component changes. My lcd3 retain their sound signature on no matter what, the HE6 is analytical on many amps but perfect on my McIntosh 225 and various vintage tube integrateds. The HD800's could be confused as entirely different headphones going from an amp to another. I.E I don't enjoy the 800's on my mjolnir or the bha-1 but it's phenomenal on the stratus, S7 and my mc225.

I repeat my experience on our tests; five different HD800's in stock configuration on the same amps are literally the same sounding. The variances are probably existant from model to model, but even my good ears can't differentiate no matter how much focus i put on a passage.

Comparisons were made on bha-1, b22, burson ha160, woo wa6se, nuforce hdp, fiio alpen, mjolnir, a vintage sansui integrated and a mcintosh mc225. Sources being bifrost, gungnir, m51

 

Very informative posts. Thank you to both.

post #479 of 14679
Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post

Very informative post dleblanc343. I'm afraid it's futile though, as the rampant speculation will no doubt drown out this and other data points.

 

Out of interest, have you tried the MJ>HD800 with the M51 behind it? I found the Gungnir wanting in that chain and all the qualities that irked me were addressed when the NAD replaced it.

I did, the NAD is a better dac overall, and I preferred it to my gungnir. I am tempted to buy it, but I will wait to compare to the statement before spending more. The gungnir is great for the price though, and  the performance is fantastic when paired with the mjolnir in most cases.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cante Ista View Post


OK Sounds like we can all rest now! That was sure an intense test. Thanks dleblanc! beerchug.gif

Someone had to try it out! Turns out I had access to a large sample so why not! beerchug.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by myc View Post

Nice info popcorn.gif.

 

Did you try it after "burning in" all the same 5 pairs? 

All pairs besides the 20500's were burned in 500 hours +.

Quote:
Originally Posted by soullinker20 View Post

which do you think is the best cable for the hd800 to decrease the sibilance? I use them with the Zodiac+ and it is the song/recording who has the sibilance, maybe I could decrease it somehow?

 

thanks

The black dragon works well, but I find it takes a bit too much away. DHC coppers are good, the Q is neutral and that's what I use of my rigs.

post #480 of 14679

I am curious if anyone has purchased a backup cable from Sennheiser and re-terminating it with a 4pin XLR? With the new Taboo MK III coming I would like a balanced cable to use, but I would like to keep the cost down a bit from custom. Any ideas?


Edited by longbowbbs - 3/3/13 at 4:13pm
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