I was at the Dallas meet today and met Dan. He is a very nice fellow and clearly very knowledgeable about his craft. He had two Alpha Dogs there, One was being driven in a balanced configuration, and the other was unbalanced. I got a chance to listen to the unbalanced Alpha Dog out of his Burson DAC/amp, at which point I then listened to the Alpha Dog connected to my portable setup consisting of a iPod Video 5th gen connected to a Fiio E12 on high gain via a LOD.
The thing that struck me about the Alpha Dog was how well controlled the bass is. I normally EQ my headphones via Rockbox at the low end, with the goal of a flat steady-state response to as low a frequency as I can muster without going crazy with gain. The Alpha Dog needs no low end EQ - nor any EQ period, in my opinion. The sound is neutral and yet engaging. I was also pleasantly surprised as to how well the E12 drove the Alpha Dog. Dan said that the E12 is one of the few portable amps that can drive his headphones, and clearly they need higher power in order to really sing. He also had a portable stack with him at the meet, consisting of an AK100 connected to an iBasso DAC/amp via optical.
The treble on the Alpha Dog sounds sweet without being analytical. To me, I preferred it to the closest thing I could compare it to, which is the Fostex TH600. I heard the TH600 at the last Dallas meet thanks to Justin from Headamp, and while it sounded quite good, the treble sounded hotter than I am used to. Not so with the Alpha Dog. I think there will be many more comparisons between the Alpha Dog and the TH600 given their price points and sonic characters.
The fit and finish is top notch. It is a very attractive headphone. I own the Fostex T50RP, and bought the Alpha Pads some time ago from Dan for comfort and better sound from the T50RP, but the Alpha Dog takes both the build and the sound to a much much higher level.
Edited by jazzman7 - 9/30/13 at 8:30am