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The JPS Labs: Abyss AB-1266 Impressions Thread - Page 41

post #601 of 1568

The JPS Abyss AB-1266 have arrived Munkong Thailand for 2 weeks. One week later the MalValve three followed along with HE90, Sony MDR R10,

Stax SR009, Fostex TH900, LCD3, HD800, HE6 and HE500   etc.

At first impression,  the Abyss impressed us with deepest and best quality bass while the mid was a little bit recessed and mild sparkling treble.  The

background was dark, quiet with huge soundstage and excellent detail.  We tried several amplifiers at first with burson conductor, bakoon amplifier,

AudioGD and Schiit Mjolnir.   The Burson conductor seems to be underpower and the soundstage was small and compress.  The bakoon was better

with excellent dynamic swing.  At Munkong some said that the best match may be the AudioGD and Schiit Mjolniris also very good but the sound quality was different while the audioGD was more analytical and Schiit mjolnir produced thicker warmer sound.  

When Mal Valve Three arrived it can drive the Abyss very good however in some music which require excellent dynamic swing i.e. The rite of Spring

it seem to be under power but the sounds was very nice.  The MalValve three was excellent with HD800 (may be the best I have heard), Sony MDR R10 (equal to EAR HP4 that I also own) .It is a perfect match for the HE6 ahd HE500 and their bass with the HE was perfect.  LCD3 also shines with Mal Valve Three.

We tried more of the Mal Valve Three with fully balanced setup and use the Ayre DSD DAC with volume control.  Now you get the perfect combination

(from what I heard from Munkong and Louis) between Abyss and MalValve Three (at least 30% better than the SE setup).  We will have more chance to directly compare with other legendary and other better current headphones


Edited by kiertijai - 8/29/13 at 7:33am
post #602 of 1568

here are the amplifiers that we tested and matched very well with the JPS Abyss (which still needs more burn in)

Mal Valve Three in fully balanced setup is one of the best combo out there especially it brings life to the mid

especially for vocal music for the Abyss, if you want more laid back mid you may try Bakoon Amplifier and for

really good dynamic swing AudioGD is the better one.  Burson Conductor and other in Munkong are under power

post #603 of 1568
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiertijai View Post



here are the amplifiers that we tested and matched very well with the JPS Abyss (which still needs more burn in)
Mal Valve Three in fully balanced setup is one of the best combo out there especially it brings life to the mid
especially for vocal music for the Abyss, if you want more laid back mid you may try Bakoon Amplifier and for
really good dynamic swing AudioGD is the better one.  Burson Conductor and other in Munkong are under power

Interesting review.

The abyss pairs wonderfully with the audio-gd nfb27. Some people in another thread questioned my judgement without trying the combo themselves.

What audio-gd amp did you use? Was it a master 8 or a reference 10?
post #604 of 1568
Interesting findings - specially with the mjolnir, it'd be interesting to pair the abyss with the new schiit ragnarok (whenever that arrives).

More importantly how does the abyss compare against the lcd3 or any other cans mentioned above? I know you find the ayre+malvalve+abyss impressive/perfect and one would hope a +$15k setup sounds pretty darn good but how would you rate it against say an ayre+malvalve+lcd3 or even ayre+malvalve+sr009?

Thanks

C
post #605 of 1568

More importantly how does the abyss compare against the lcd3 or any other cans mentioned above? I know you find the ayre+malvalve+abyss impressive/perfect and one would hope a +$15k setup sounds pretty darn good but how would you rate it against say an ayre+malvalve+lcd3 or even ayre+malvalve+sr009?

Thanks
      It also depends on personal taste to say which headphone is better.

      However IMO Abyss+Malvalve three  or even Bakoon or Schiit Mjolnir is far better than LCD3 and most people

who have listened to SR009 vs Abyss also preferred the Abyss which is more exciting, dark background , better soundstage

and best bass resonse.  Even witht he use of Bakoon or Schiit Mjolnir (which is not as expensive) it is still better.  There is

one cheaph AudioGD Precision one just coming out (550$ price with speaker post option) with the power of 16W at 40 Ohm

hopefully it can also do a good job on the Abyss.  Munkong just recently has them and will try them soon.   We also use the

Benchmark DAC and the result are similar.   IMO the Abyss is one of the best current headphone, better than SR009 and LCD3

HD800 drive byMal Valve Three may be closer to the abyss.

post #606 of 1568
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiertijai View Post

      It also depends on personal taste to say which headphone is better.

      However IMO Abyss+Malvalve three  or even Bakoon or Schiit Mjolnir is far better than LCD3 and most people

who have listened to SR009 vs Abyss also preferred the Abyss which is more exciting, dark background , better soundstage

and best bass resonse.  Even witht he use of Bakoon or Schiit Mjolnir (which is not as expensive) it is still better.  There is

one cheaph AudioGD Precision one just coming out (550$ price with speaker post option) with the power of 16W at 40 Ohm

hopefully it can also do a good job on the Abyss.  Munkong just recently has them and will try them soon.   We also use the

Benchmark DAC and the result are similar.   IMO the Abyss is one of the best current headphone, better than SR009 and LCD3

HD800 drive byMal Valve Three may be closer to the abyss.

 

Quite interesting this... thank you for your impressions. I'm saving up for an LAu... but the abyss sounds pretty good with a mjolnir, you say... I happen to have a mjolnir... and the wait on the LAu seems so long....

 

It totally sucks that now there's finally a couple of pairs of these babies in Thailand, I will not be anywhere within 500km of either for at least the next 2 weeks. Arrrrrrgggghhhhh!!!!!

post #607 of 1568

I'm extremely fond of the Abyss, and I'm one of the folks kiertijai mentions who prefers it over the SR-009. I'd go so far as to say there's really only one headphone I prefer over the Abyss, and that's the Sennheiser Orpheus HE90, but only on the right amplifier (there seems to be quite a bit of variation among HEV90s in my experience). Then again the Orpheus costs double what the Abyss does.

 

In my opinion the Sennheiser HD800 is still better at resolving micro detail compared to the Abyss. The Stax SR-Omega midrange still sounds a bit more 'correct' with certain instruments. The SR-007mk1 is still less fatiguing and easier to listen to for longer periods of time. The treble on the SR-009 sounds smoother and more refined. The treble on the Sony R10 sounds sweeter while its mids sound more emotional. The Qualia 010 sounds more spacious and airy. However none of these headphones---each one exceptional in its own right---get as much right to my ears overall as the Abyss. None of them sound as natural or as balanced in frequency response to my ears as the Abyss. So while other headphones may excel over the Abyss in certain respects, for me its hard to beat as a complete package. No headphone is perfect by any means, even the $12k Orpheus. It's really a matter of finding something that does what you prioritize best while minimizing the flaws that bug you the most. For me the Abyss does just that.

 

As kiertijai says, the bass response is just awesome. Best bass I've heard in a pair of headphones to date: taut, punchy, extremely well textured while not at all overbearing. The Abyss' strong suit IMHO is how well controlled those drivers are. It starts and stops on a dime with a stunning sense of speed and articulation. As purrin noted so astutely, flagship Stax tend to more gracefully accelerate and decelerate which lends them a more ethereal kind of sonic presence. It's a more refined type of sound that some people will definitely prefer. For me however the Abyss just sounds more true to life in comparison.

post #608 of 1568
MuppetFace, what amp(s) did you try the abyss with, just out of curiosity.

Also, I seem to recall you got yours quite early on. Any change after break-in?
post #609 of 1568

In my opinion the Sennheiser HD800 is still better at resolving micro detail compared to the Abyss. The Stax SR-Omega midrange still sounds a bit more 'correct' with certain instruments. The SR-007mk1 is still less fatiguing and easier to listen to for longer periods of time. The treble on the SR-009 sounds smoother and more refined. The treble on the Sony R10 sounds sweeter while its mids sound more emotional. The Qualia 010 sounds more spacious and airy.

     Thanks Muppetface. I haven't tried other Stax yet but I will soon especially the SR Omega  that I  have kept in the box for too long looking for adequate amplifier to drive it.

     You share my experience with HD800 and Qualia 010,  I also felt that the sound of the Qualia seems to be richer as well as the HD800.  MalValveThree may be the best amplifier

to drive those phones besides the EAR HP4.

      I will try my other phones later when I figure out how to handle the Abyss correctly.  I will also try to compare with the new Jecklin Float QA and TakeT H2+ in the same setup

driven by my Zotl amplfier through jumpers (for new Jecklin Float QA, TakeT H2+) and special adapter cable (Kimber Kable 8TC) from speaker to 4 pin XLR next week at Munkong

I would like to have other Thai members to share their experience too.   Hope we have the Ayre DSD DAC there at the time.   One member (Moowan) is trying to convert my SACD collections

to DSD ISO and DSF file so we will have more to try i.e. Mariah Carey, Alison Krauss, Jazz at the Pawnshop, Queen , Black Sabbath, all Bernstein's Mahler, and other esoteric SACD e.g.

Swan Lake Fistoulari, recent Brahms' Piano concertos by Backhaus and Helene Grimaud.  There is one new site for DSD download www.superhirez.com but I don't know whether they

just ripped SACD to DSD or produce  DSD  download and only few selections seen : Shelby Lynne, Holly Cole , Phoebe Snow   etc.

post #610 of 1568

I mainly use the Liquid Gold with the Abyss. It's become my go to amp for planar magnetics in general. One of the most powerful headphone amps I've used, with immense control over the drivers while still maintaining an uncanny level of delicacy and finesse. It presents detail and layering in a very overt way but still sounds natural, open, and musical. Basically I feel it's the best solid state dedicated headphone amp I've ever heard for my personal taste.

 

I've also used the Abyss with the Liquid Glass, Moth Audio 2A3, and a prototype build of the Black Diamond from ECP (a transformer based amp rather than transistors or tubes). Additionally I'd tried it with portable amps, DAPs, and directly out of sources without any external amplification. To me the Abyss seems about on par with the HE-6 when it comes to power requirements, but I find it's a lot easier to drive than the HE-6 synergistically speaking, sounding better with a wider variety of gear whereas the HE-6 is pickier. That's not to say the Abyss sounds good on everything though, and some pairings are definitely better than others. The Liquid Gold remains my favorite.

post #611 of 1568
Quote:
Originally Posted by MuppetFace View Post

I mainly use the Liquid Gold with the Abyss. It's become my go to amp for planar magnetics in general. One of the most powerful headphone amps I've used, with immense control over the drivers while still maintaining an uncanny level of delicacy and finesse. It presents detail and layering in a very overt way but still sounds natural, open, and musical. Basically I feel it's the best solid state dedicated headphone amp I've ever heard for my personal taste.

 

I've also used the Abyss with the Liquid Glass, Moth Audio 2A3, and a prototype build of the Black Diamond from ECP (a transformer based amp rather than transistors or tubes). Additionally I'd tried it with portable amps, DAPs, and directly out of sources without any external amplification. To me the Abyss seems about on par with the HE-6 when it comes to power requirements, but I find it's a lot easier to drive than the HE-6 synergistically speaking, sounding better with a wider variety of gear whereas the HE-6 is pickier. That's not to say the Abyss sounds good on everything though, and some pairings are definitely better than others. The Liquid Gold remains my favorite.

 

Thanks for the info. Seems I'll most likely get LAu then the Abyss. Then finally just be flat broke.

post #612 of 1568
Quote:
Originally Posted by x838nwy View Post

Thanks for the info. Seems I'll most likely get LAu then the Abyss. Then finally just be flat broke.

Oh, and don't forget that DCS Vivaldi Stack! biggrin.gif
post #613 of 1568
Quote:
Originally Posted by zachchen1996 View Post


Oh, and don't forget that DCS Vivaldi Stack! biggrin.gif

 

There's currently no way of me acquiring that setup that does not involve jail time. Actually, I will avoid listening to a Da Vinci -> LAu -> Abyss and similar setup's just in case I eventually find a way to retionalize good sound vs. shower rapes and incarceration. My family may not appreciate such sacrifices.

post #614 of 1568

What audio-gd amp did you use? Was it a master 8 or a reference 10?

    It is master 8.  However it seems that other audioGD  is a good match for the Abyss.

    I wonder if the new audioGD precision one that recently came out is a good match too.  The price

is quite tempting 550$   with 16W X2  into 40 Ohm and with speaker post option.

http://www.audio-gd.com/Pro/amp/Precision1/Precision1EN.htm

    Three Precision One will arrive Thailand this weekend, hope that we have chances to try that too.

The dynamic swing with the AudioGd seems to be the best.

post #615 of 1568

will report the result of the Precision One

and also the comparison between new Jecklin float QA, TakeT H2+ and the Abyss  next week.

All set up is ready.


Edited by kiertijai - 8/31/13 at 4:08am
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