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Seattle Head-fi meet at BottleHeadquarters 7/27/13 Impression  

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 

The trip to Bottle Head Headquarter really worth the time and drive. Thanks for Dr. B 's hostility and kindness. Dr. B 's setups are all about music, organic and natural. The technical aspect of our meet is getting better each time. Of course the great beer right next door, I really mean at next door!!


The prototype "Mainline" headphone amp had great synergy with HD800,and also worked well with LCD-2, which is a rare found for an amp to drive both headphones well. This amp let me have second look/opinion about HD800 that I never liked before.


Thanks for KingStyle's effort to bring all his gears to the meet, a full car load, it was a lot of work to setup and pack away. The highlights of meet are:


DIY Blue Hawaiian and headphones to go with it.

Bottle Head prototype Mainline tube headphone amp

Many LCD-2s and HD800 in different version and cables


Fostex TH900

Stax 009

Stax 007 V1.

Airbow SR-SC21

Cavalli Liquid Fire Amp

Hi-Fi Man ? (I did not have time to check them out)

Eddie Current BA with KR and ECC35 tubes

Eddie Current Electra

Eddie Current Zana Deux


The meet was in very small group. Everyone had time to sit done and listen.

post #2 of 29
Thread Starter 

OK, let me start the round one: LCD-2 V1 with ALO cable VS. Fostex TH900 with (? cable, I need help here),  I was very focused on the music. Both headphones was driven by Eddie Current Zana Deux. The TH900 was much more efficient than LCD-2 and easier to drive, but still, I like it on "hi" with Zana Deux. Both Headphones were head to head, not a huge improvement of each other, they are tonally more similar than difference. The TH900 is more natural and organic than LCD-2 with a little bit mid-bass hump, it did not bother me too much but it is there. I never feel my LCD-2 is unnatural until comparing side to side with TH900. TH900 has more sense of air and space and nicer vocal but at $600 better? I don't know, the law of diminished return in Hi-Fi world is strictly applied here. I would not pick either headphone after I listened to other ones at meet.

Edited by Seamaster - 7/27/13 at 11:36pm
post #3 of 29
Originally Posted by Seamaster View Post

Thanks for Dr. B 's hostility and kindness.

post #4 of 29
Thread Starter 

Oh, ha ha, a typo. Sorry

post #5 of 29
It was a nice mellow meet, pretty much the regular gang. My head count was 20. I wasn't sure of how many would show so we were set up for more like 35 or 40 like we have seen at previous meets. With all the extra table space available I took the liberty of reserving the upstairs for demos of our gear, with our server playing through a Crack and a S.E.X. and a Mainline amp, where everyone could plug their own cans in each and decide which amp worked the best for them, and a second station with my tape machine playing through our own HD800s on a Mainline amp and our K1Ks driven by a BeePre and Paramount 300B amps. Unlike the last meet where folks were discouraged having to wait for a turn at the one Mainline I brought, hopefully this time everyone who wanted to got to spend some time with the Mainlines.

As usual the gang was very friendly, good natured, and very respectful of each other's gear both physically in with regards to impressions and constructive criticisms. Always a pleasure to have to you guys and gals over.
post #6 of 29
Only Seamaster.....lol. The meet was great. Getting there..... Was another story... Lol... Anyway it was great to go to Bottlehead again in perfect weather. Doc B is just a great host and Big supporter of us local Head-fiers. Yeah some of us arrived a little late from a little ferry traffic. Equus, KingStyles and I were hanging out catching up waiting for the feery to pick us up.
Dude_500's DIY Blue Hawaii was awesome to listen to. It worked perfectly. Yes I could nit pick, but it deserves some serious Head-fi street cred. And to audition this at BottleHead.. Perfect Venue!
The Electra very nice to listen to. Very well behaved amp. Listen to Royksopp and really enjoyed it laidback mids and mellow highs, the bass was just fine.
M2man's rig goes beyond any normal head-fi common sense. We have these meets to listen to gear to have a better idea before you spend a ton of money. I do not reccommend to do what Andrew did, but his system is totally off the chain, it works perfectly together. An Eddie Current Zana deux, fostex th 900s, and is ps audio perfect wave dac, hooked up to his imac. I rocked out to AC/DC Back in black. It rocked, the amp was fast and did not lag or distort. I listened to that song twice.
Since I am listening to a mpx3, I really liked Equus' liquid fire a lot more. Really dig the mids, I get it with the lcd2s. Anything box was great to listen to.
Palmfish's rig, it is small now, but sounds great. His netbook, asus dac, and hd800's. the rig makes the hd800 sound realistic. I appreciated that alot. Listen to Neyo on that rig.
Everybody knows I like Postal Service........,, you had to be there...
Yes i did listen to a lot of stuff this time around. Dont get to most of the time.
It was great to get in a dicussion with Bottlehead Josh and dude_500 about how changing cables and capacitors changes sound. We may have some great experiments next summer.
It was nice to see 4nradio, atomicbob and shortiefish with her amp fixed.
Just a few thoughts, off to work.
post #7 of 29

I had so much fun at this meet! Everyone was really sweet and so were their rigs *v*


I was very excited because this was my first meet with a real, semi-proper setup! FiiO DAC, Front Panel Express amp, D2ks, and my puny little laptop... I felt pretty proud of myself, even though my rig's not much of a big deal. To pat myself on the back a little more, I was really happy with how my stuff sounded-- I hadn't set it all up like that before, so to hear it sounding so lovely was mega-coolio.


I really enjoyed those funny-looking Audio Technicas (I think?) that were upstairs, hooked up to the BeePre Bottlehead amp and the tape machine (which was awesome to look at). I haven't listened to headphones like that before, and they sounded crazy nice! I really adored how detailed the vocals were.


I also loved the LCD-3s (as usual). I could listen to those for hours. I wish my dad were into them/they costed less money! Oh well, I'll find a way to get a pair someday. I need to get a job.


There were plenty of other highlights of the meet for me, but I don't remember what the heaphones were called, haha. I should probably remember to write these things down next time.


Thank you everyone!!

Edited by ShortieFish - 7/28/13 at 12:28pm
post #8 of 29

aaww.. miss you guys so much. Living the experience through your words. Where did you go for the after meet?  Did Stan make an appearance?

post #9 of 29
Originally Posted by Seamaster View Post

OK, let me start the round one: LCD-2 V1 with ALO cable VS. Fostex TH900 with (? cable, I need help here)
The Fostex has a Silver Dragon cable (24awg 7N AG)...

I wish I had gotten there earlier, I didn't think to try the LCD-2 on the ZDSE. 2 hrs is not long enough to visit all the gear.

I was glad we got so many stats this time. I could almost do the 007's. They would need some silver cables to tame the highs a hair. Very nice though. The 009 is pretty bright. Clearly I'm in the bass head camp. Thanks to Josh and Dude_500 for bringing those.

Anyone get the particulars on the homemade stats? What thickness membrane? What dust cover? Rear dust cover or not? Diameter? Spacing? I need more details.
post #10 of 29

It was great to see everyone and hear all the rigs. When I heard Andrew's setup, I could have stopped there, had a beer and spent the rest of the afternoon listening to the TH-900 on the ZDSE. Mindful that others might want to listen I didn't. Great synergy in that setup. Josh's rig was impressive as always. Appreciate his commitment to let others experience what he has assembled. Then there was the peanut gallery in the foyer where curbfeeler, miceblue and I held court with the Benchmark DAC1 HDR, O2 + ODac, and Woo WA7. Thanks again to our esteemed host, Doc Bottlehead.

post #11 of 29
Picture time!!!
post #12 of 29
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by MomijiTMO View Post

Picture time!!!

I had my D90 with me but I was so busy to listen and drinking beer...... It was too late when I pulled out my camera, everyone was packing up already. Someone may help me out here?

post #13 of 29
Thread Starter 

Round 2, the hype of Stax 009:

First of all, Kingstyle told me his Eddie Current Electra is tubed on the warm side the factory setting. Eddie Current house sound is known (to me) as neutral with very small touch of warmth. Someone may say the 009 is bright, well, yes and no. Put aside the HF, the 009 is effortless, open, (very) transparent, organic, natural, great vocal, and with great believable bass. It is hard for a pair headphones to accomplish all of these at the same time. The 009 is technically superior to Fostex TH900, LCD3/2, HD800, and 007s by a large margin, salute to Stax beerchug.gif. Now count in the HF, for pop and most rock records (often badly recorded) the exteme HFof 009 is counter productive (to me) than help. The other part of frequencies of 009 are right on, but the HF is too "aggressive", again to me, Kingstyle is fine with the HF presentation. In the Pink Floyd " the Dark side of the Moon", the opening bells in the "time" is ear piercing bright, unbearable.  Same song with the warm 007 V1. was fine, but also you will lose the openness and effortlessness of 009 when use the  007 v1. I switched to Enya and norah jones, the presentation of 009 is lovely with the extreme HF kicks in from time to time, especially with Norah Johns's at the beginning of each sentence of the lyric when she try to use her female HF magic, the 009 gave me a sharp pinch that remain me I am listening to a record not a real person. Like I said other frequencies of 009 is very beautiful that included vocal and bass. I can imagine this setup is good for classical music. I really wish this is a "L" pad device can adjust HF of 009, I would be a real happy man.

Edited by Seamaster - 7/29/13 at 8:43am
post #14 of 29
Originally Posted by sachu View Post

aaww.. miss you guys so much. Living the experience through your words. Where did you go for the after meet?  Did Stan make an appearance?


Missed you too man.  We actually had Seamaster back (obviously, since he's posting), despite the work, school, military, and kids obligations.  We ended up just grabbing some beer and stuff after the meet at the brewery next door.  They already had a tab going for me so it seemed to make sense.  :)

post #15 of 29
Thread Starter 

Thanks for you guys to encourage me (going) to finish my Stax energizer project. Very "unfortunate" is the word in my mind after I listen to the 009, is the Stax engineer should have better understanding of music, not to just achieve technical superiority

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Head-Fi.org › Forums › Meets, Get-Togethers, Factory Tours › Head-Fi Meet Impressions, Trade Show Reports, Factory Tours › Seattle Head-fi meet at BottleHeadquarters 7/27/13 Impression