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MrSpeakers Alpha Dog Revealed! - The World's First Production 3D-Printed Headphones - Page 310

post #4636 of 8806
Quote:
Originally Posted by kstuart View Post

Alpha Dog Tip:

I did some experimenting recently with the position of the Alpha Dogs on my head, while listening.
The User Manual suggests turning the pads 10 degrees, and for me, that would match the angle between the vertical line of my ears versus the vertical line of my head.
However, I tried a larger angle and found that a larger angle was able to seal better at the point behind my ears, where my jaw meets my skull.
When I did that, the existing slight emphasis to upper mid and treble vanished, and now the overall balance is more like the Mad Dog (not identical but less of a difference in frequency balance than I found at first).

Flat, neutral headphones seems to be very dependent on having them placed just right on your head - because if you have something wrong, then the bass response will be too low (and you will think "these headphones suck").  Whereas with "fun" headphones that have boosted bass, if you have them placed wrong, you just lose most of the boost, but it still sounds pretty good.

(I am also finding that if you have a good EQ like on Jriver MediaCenter, you can also get some of the same "fun but not flat" sound on the Alpha Dog (that you get on the Mad Dog) by boosting the bass by a few db - somewhere like 100hz or 150hz.)

Thanks for hint. I knew they sound different depending of position, but I couldn't decide which position is best. Like you say around 10 degrees, and bottom of pads should touch where jaw connects to skull. Yep, it is better sound. However did you not notice that they don't grip very well in that position - I mean they feel like they were to fall of.
post #4637 of 8806
Quote:
Originally Posted by koolas View Post


Thanks for hint. I knew they sound different depending of position, but I couldn't decide which position is best. Like you say around 10 degrees, and bottom of pads should touch where jaw connects to skull. Yep, it is better sound. However did you not notice that they don't grip very well in that position - I mean they feel like they were to fall of.


They certainly don't feel like they are about to fall off my head, in any position.

 

People have a very large variety of heads and ears and everyone is going to have a somewhat different experience for each pair of headphones  (they are somewhat like shoes in that sense).

 

Another way to summarize my tip:

 

Make sure there is not a gap between the pads and your head at any point, and if there is, try rotating the pads so that they line up with your jaw and thus close the gap.

post #4638 of 8806
Ok, good tip cool.gif

I'd like to go back to AD performance with binaural records. I mentioned that few times here, but no-one responded, while in people's reviews I see you use binaural tracks. So, my question again: what are your impressions listening binaural on AD?
post #4639 of 8806
Soundstage and imaging with binaural tracks was pretty good with the Alpha Dog. There was a nice sense of depth with Ottmar Liebert's Up Close as well as Lenny White's Explorations in Time and Space albums, but not very much width, at least with the Objective DAC and Objective 2. The instrument separation wasn't quite what I'm used to with open-back headphones though, so it didn't sound completely realistic to me.
post #4640 of 8806
I just tried C.C.Colletti Bring It Home with RH-A30 (open) vs Alpha Dog. There is audible difference in how these two headphones present the sound. The sound stage of RH-A30 presentation is wider. I can sense distance in X axis very well, however all sounds seem to have Z=0, i.e. no depth. When I put Alpha Dogs on the situation turned immediately different. There is more sense of depth, but scene is narrower.

I am listening on Pan Am as DAC and amp. Some reviews say Pan Am makes sound stage wider. This is possibly true, because Alpha Dog's don't sound too narrow with it. Maybe Pan Am is a perfect pairing for Alpha Dog's, who knows...

I am having hard time. I like the wide and open sound of RH-A30 and that it is genuinely flat FR, but then I love Alpha Dog's for that extra detail that I can hear. Actually it is not any more detail, because RH-A30 has already a very high detailed presentation and you can usually hear all the things that are on the record, but with Alpha Dog's sound is sharper. It has better SNR, i.e. how cleanly I can hear note that is being played and how much does it blend with background noise. On RH-A30 it blends much more than with Alpha Dogs. I can't say I heard better sound on any headphones or speakers, but I surely heard the sound of real guitar, and obviously with no accompanying background noise.

That noise is an effect of imperfection of the headphones. The fact that RH-A30 use dynamic driver, which weighs more than thin foil in ortho-dynamic Alpha Dogs, and that makes them sound less detailed than Alpha Dog. One would conclude the headphones with dynamic driver are sentenced to be less detailed than ortho-dynamics. But then is Alpha Dog more detailed than HD800? The answer is probably "no". But look at that this way: one could very easily bring to the table orthos which are better than HD800, but other way around would be a hard task to do.

So, Alpha Dogs are not the end of world when it comes to detail, but they certainly astonish. There are two reasons I am comparing their sound with RH-A30. One is very obvious, and it is because I heave these two pairs. Second is that drivers of both of these come from cans, which cost around $130 (T50RP and ATH-M50).

Why binaural? I would even go further and say binaural and high-rez. The answer is simple. Human ear is a very precise measurement apparatus, and the sense of space is very strongly connected with detail and stereo separation. I mentioned binaural in this Alpha Dog thread simply because I was in a genuine shock hearing that combo. Again I am using Pan Am and it is known for bettering soundstage biggrin.gif
post #4641 of 8806

BTW, I recently upgraded my DAC to the Schiit Bifrost Uber, and I am finding that the Alpha Dog is more revealing of the DAC differences than the Mad Dog (in other words, "it scales more").

 

And, I realized that the correct answer to the question from a few weeks back - If you only had one pair of headphones - would actually be the Sennheiser RS-180 Wireless (not either of the Dogs).  I actually use the RS-180 more than any other, since I can do household chores while listening to any audio (or video) in my collection.  The sound quality is roughly equivalent to HD598.  It has a very even bass/midrange/treble balance and works pretty well for all genres.  The combination of wireless and audiophile sound quality would make them best for "if I could only have one".  See headfonia.com for a review (sorry haters of Mike).

post #4642 of 8806
What about RS220? And also, don't you find Senns signature boring when compared to dogs?
post #4643 of 8806
Quote:
Originally Posted by kstuart View Post
 

BTW, I recently upgraded my DAC to the Schiit Bifrost Uber, and I am finding that the Alpha Dog is more revealing of the DAC differences than the Mad Dog (in other words, "it scales more").

 

And, I realized that the correct answer to the question from a few weeks back - If you only had one pair of headphones - would actually be the Sennheiser RS-180 Wireless (not either of the Dogs).  I actually use the RS-180 more than any other, since I can do household chores while listening to any audio (or video) in my collection.  The sound quality is roughly equivalent to HD598.  It has a very even bass/midrange/treble balance and works pretty well for all genres.  The combination of wireless and audiophile sound quality would make them best for "if I could only have one".  See headfonia.com for a review (sorry haters of Mike).

I'm with you here.

I find the resolution of the Alpha Dogs out-shines my Mad Dogs.  Though I got love for them both.

When making system changes - the differences pop much faster to my ears on the Alphas!

post #4644 of 8806

I've had my ADs since the first batch shipped - balanced, running exclusively out of my M8.  Having lived with them for a while: I love them to death.  A lot of the discussion here has been about the fine points of frequency response and soundstage, but the biggest impression they make on me is just how clean, precise, and altogether coherent they are.  Imaging, separation, the space between instruments and notes, attack and decay, tonal balance, all that sort of thing are just superlative.  It's a sum-of-its-parts thing; focusing on each element doesn't capture just how integrated and "right" they sound.  And comfortable and beautifully made on top of that.  (My previous best closed headphones were D7000s, and the ADs make them sound downright muddy.)  Tastes differ, but these play with the best, and the fact that they come in at the price they do is I think really pretty amazing.  

post #4645 of 8806
Quote:
Originally Posted by barbes View Post
 

I've had my ADs since the first batch shipped - balanced, running exclusively out of my M8.  Having lived with them for a while: I love them to death.  A lot of the discussion here has been about the fine points of frequency response and soundstage, but the biggest impression they make on me is just how clean, precise, and altogether coherent they are.  Imaging, separation, the space between instruments and notes, attack and decay, tonal balance, all that sort of thing are just superlative.  It's a sum-of-its-parts thing; focusing on each element doesn't capture just how integrated and "right" they sound.  And comfortable and beautifully made on top of that.  (My previous best closed headphones were D7000s, and the ADs make them sound downright muddy.)  Tastes differ, but these play with the best, and the fact that they come in at the price they do is I think really pretty amazing.  

I bought an M8 in anticipation of the arrival of the ADs also added both cables to my order so I'm looking forward to listening.

 

Love the M8 btw

post #4646 of 8806
Quote:
Originally Posted by dc-k View Post
 

I bought an M8 in anticipation of the arrival of the ADs also added both cables to my order so I'm looking forward to listening.

 

Love the M8 btw

Likewise.  The AD is my only balanced headphone and the M8 my only balanced amp, so I can't make any comparisons, but they go beautifully together.

post #4647 of 8806

Anyone using a parametric equaliser with the Alpha Dogs? Can you share a picture of what you are currently using.

 

I'd be especially interested in those who are trying to EQ them to neutral.

post #4648 of 8806
Quote:
Originally Posted by koolas View Post

What about RS220? And also, don't you find Senns signature boring when compared to dogs?

The RS220 were not yet released when I bought the RS180.  And, again I am referring simply to the practicality of the wireless.

 

The RS180 (and presumably the RS220 which I have not heard) are good enough (roughly HD558/598 level) that when I am doing the dishes, I am thinking about "the burnt-on spot is going to be hard to get out" and not "these headphones suck".  In an A-B comparison to better $300 headphones, the other headphones (like the Mad Dogs) would win out.  But, cueing up a portal setup just to do the dishes is too much trouble, and I can use the RS180 to listen to whatever music or TV show was playing on the main setup, while walking around the house.

 

Anyway, this is getting off-topic, the point there was just to answer the question posed earlier in the thread.  Now, On-Topic:

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by barbes View Post
 

I've had my ADs since the first batch shipped - balanced, running exclusively out of my M8.  Having lived with them for a while: I love them to death.  A lot of the discussion here has been about the fine points of frequency response and soundstage, but the biggest impression they make on me is just how clean, precise, and altogether coherent they are.  Imaging, separation, the space between instruments and notes, attack and decay, tonal balance, all that sort of thing are just superlative.  It's a sum-of-its-parts thing; focusing on each element doesn't capture just how integrated and "right" they sound.  And comfortable and beautifully made on top of that.  (My previous best closed headphones were D7000s, and the ADs make them sound downright muddy.)  Tastes differ, but these play with the best, and the fact that they come in at the price they do is I think really pretty amazing.  


I agree entirely with the above, and again, the more that the DAC and Amp have those qualities, the more you will hear them on the Alpha Dogs.

post #4649 of 8806
Quote:
Originally Posted by kstuart View Post

 

The RS180 (and presumably the RS220 which I have not heard) are good enough (roughly HD558/598 level) that when I am doing the dishes, I am thinking about "the burnt-on spot is going to be hard to get out" and not "these headphones suck".  In an A-B comparison to better $300 headphones, the other headphones (like the Mad Dogs) would win out.  But, cueing up a portal setup just to do the dishes is too much trouble, and I can use the RS180 to listen to whatever music or TV show was playing on the main setup, while walking around the house.

 

 

 Dishwasher with decent sound insulation?

post #4650 of 8806
Just wanted to chime in here and say that the Alpha Dog is the real deal.

Super fast, extremely tight, and highly balanced. No lack of bass, though its fully integrated with everything else.

It sounds like a reference headphone through and through. My only real gripe is that there is some articial twinge up top, near the region of S sounds. Same problem I had with the MD.

The AD isn't fatiguing in the slightest, but that sizzle sticks out.

This is definitely a step above the MD, though I think I still would personally enjoy the warmth, body, and slower decay of the MD more. Personal preference.

I think those looking for technicality, neutrality, and detail retrieval can do no wrong with the AD. And it's highly enjoyable and musical enough to satisfy elsewhere.

Quick impressions, and I need a bit more testing.
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