Originally Posted by laon
garbage in garbage out, hd800 is about the most transparent headphone in the planet, it will reveal all the flaw in your chain (source-dac-amp) without mercy. they've been known to be like that for ages and now you know it first hand.
as for euphonic phone, HD650 is a safe and fairly priced bet (if not boring for some) and will play nicely even with mediocre chain.
Well , my theory , is that the hd800 need some kind of overpriced garbage to be more enjoyable ( all kind of coloration / distortion from the source).
From what I've heard the very expensive amp hdvd800 have an output impedance of 43 ohms, which might contribute to tame the treble a bit (or make it more bearable).
The o2+dac have an output impedance of 0.54 ohm, so no mercy regarding the treble.
You can raise artificially the output impedance of your source, by inserting some volume adjustor between headphone & source (like koss vc20)
this really tame the treble (I tried), but I'm unsure the result is better than eq (or if it's optimal).
How about the TH900? Are they just an hd800 with bass or are they actually different?
Here's more explanation of why I've suggested the fostex TH900. They was a time denon was producing very beautiful headphones ( D2000, D5000, D7000),
and that got a high satisfaction ratio among people that bought them. These are a bit fun, and easy to drive ( now I understand by easy to drive, that actually you don't need to put some overpriced non transparent sources, to make it more "fun" or enjoyable, but that's my theory) , and there was a time they were sold at pretty good price at amazon (now prices have been multiplied by 2). Actually it was fostex that was producing these headphones for denon as an oem manufacturer. One day denon decided to stop their commercial relation with fostex , and released a new denon line. They tried to imitate the monster beat commercial success, by making their headphone portables, and some similar design choices. Unfortunately the new denon line is ugly for a lot of people, and some think they sound bad ( not everyone, you might like the D600).
So if you want the "new" original denon, you have to look at the new fostex models, with similar design as previous denon line.
The fostex th-900 is very expensive, partly because of the "urushi paint" (some kind of japanese stuff, that is precious).
You can look also to the cheaper fostex th-600 , that doesn't have that urushi paint (look for reviews, for th-600 vs th-900 comparisons).
Edited by extrabigmehdi - 7/20/13 at 11:07am