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MrSpeakers Alpha Dog Revealed! - The World's First Production 3D-Printed Headphones - Page 556

post #8326 of 8339
Quote:
Originally Posted by goldenSHK View Post
 

Haha, I just thought that if a headphone is already ear splitting loud through an amp, but people claim that other amps still "sound better" 

 

It's something to do it "grip and control". Loudness doesn't mean that that the amp has wads of power to grab the earphones and wring every last drop from them. Especially true with magnetic planar. I noticed a big difference between about 500mW per channel and 2W per channel. Both were ear piercingly loud, but only one had the grip and control to really make the bass go wow.

post #8327 of 8339
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lillee View Post
 

 

It's something to do it "grip and control". Loudness doesn't mean that that the amp has wads of power to grab the earphones and wring every last drop from them. Especially true with magnetic planar. I noticed a big difference between about 500mW per channel and 2W per channel. Both were ear piercingly loud, but only one had the grip and control to really make the bass go wow.

I'm not saying you're dead wrong, but I'd like to see some concrete numbers/equations as to what correlates to "grip and control" and "making the bass go wow." To my knowledge (and I'm not claiming I know everything there is to audio engineering, that's why I asked for proof and didn't just outright say you're wrong), the only discernible difference between two amps at identical volume with all other things equal up the audio chain is the differences in their sound signature. Whether to you that correlates to describing the sound signature as having "grip and control" vs. wildcatsare1 describing it as "soul of the music" is all descriptive style of language for talking about the same thing - just different sound signature of the amp. 

post #8328 of 8339

You simply cannot attribute all these non-engineering terms to engineered phenomenon with any accuracy or certainty.  "Grip" and "Soul" and "wow" and "air" and "PRAT" and anything else are all purely subjective descriptions and are unique to the listener.  What "grips" me may leave your opinion covered in "veils."  :)

 

This is why I dislike the whole audiophile hype world.  It's nonsense to everyone except the listener (and those who convince themselves they understand the listener, but unless you share that person's head you are fooling yourself.)

 

Use what you like.   Make up your own mind.  If you wish, pay attention to others who like A more than B and try it yourself  Describe your reaction by saying "I like A more then B too" (or not) and leave it at that.  Nothing else matters (cue Metallica)

post #8329 of 8339

The O2 amp was specifically designed to be audibly transparent and to accommodate the power requirements for a wide variety of headphones.  I have no issues with my Mad Dogs and the O2.  I don't see any major differences in the specifications for the Alpha Dog.  The O2 should be a good SS amp to use with the Alpha Dog.

post #8330 of 8339
Quote:
Originally Posted by sonitus mirus View Post

The O2 amp was specifically designed to be audibly transparent and to accommodate the power requirements for a wide variety of headphones.  I have no issues with my Mad Dogs and the O2.  I don't see any major differences in the specifications for the Alpha Dog.  The O2 should be a good SS amp to use with the Alpha Dog.

I think one of my posts started this tangent and I'm thankful for all the various perspectives of the experienced posters here. Your first sentence above was pretty much the reason I chose the O2 as my first headphone amp to go with my first $500+ headphones (most I'd ever spent was about $100 in the mid 90s which has to be in the range of $200 in today's dollars).

I do think I'll be picking up a tube or hybrid amp at some point along with a higher end open orthodynamic headphone. I do prefer to listen at lower volumes, with that being the case will my ADs likely sound better with a lyr2? I guess what I'd like to better understand is whether there is any support/evidence that it could be more than just a preference for a warmer sound signature that drives some of the glowing reviews for the lyr2 and AD combo?
post #8331 of 8339
Quote:
Originally Posted by goldenSHK View Post
 

I'm not saying you're dead wrong, but I'd like to see some concrete numbers/equations as to what correlates to "grip and control" and "making the bass go wow." To my knowledge (and I'm not claiming I know everything there is to audio engineering, that's why I asked for proof and didn't just outright say you're wrong), the only discernible difference between two amps at identical volume with all other things equal up the audio chain is the differences in their sound signature. Whether to you that correlates to describing the sound signature as having "grip and control" vs. wildcatsare1 describing it as "soul of the music" is all descriptive style of language for talking about the same thing - just different sound signature of the amp. 

 

I wasn't referring to sound signature at all. Simply put, if your amp cannot at least output 750mW (give or take) bare minimum at the ohms for your magnetic planar earphones (50 Ohm for Alpha Dogs) then there isn't enough power to sufficiently drive them.

 

Here's what Audeze has to say, they recommend 1W

https://audeze.zendesk.com/entries/20866002-Selecting-an-amp- 

 

It's not just about loudness, as some amps with small wattage can play music loudly @ 50ohms but a 350mW amp being pushed to 95% volume and experiencing clipping is not going to the same as a 2W amp at 30% volume and no were near max. Both are playing music at 85db but one is significantly distorted when reaching dynamic peaks (complex passages of music) and hence "wow" bass just isn't there. The "grip" and "control" needs power. Without power there is no "grip" or "control". Never mind how warm/dark/textured the amp is, that is separate.

 

Here is another great, short read and although its talking about hifi amps, it's still relevant

http://www.gcaudio.com/resources/howtos/voltageloudness.html

 

Quote:
 As you can see, clean, undistorted power is the key. A 25 watt amplifier, constantly driven to clipping, is more dangerous than a 250 watt amplifier that is never taxed

 

Have a nice day everyone! 


Edited by Lillee - 10/13/14 at 4:05pm
post #8332 of 8339

From limited experience with Magnetic Planar headphones ( having owned LCD2r1, LCD2.2, Mad Dog 3.2, Alpha Dog and auditioned LCD3, Oppo pm1 and the medi-evil torture device - Abyss), I can safely say that they thrive on power.

 

That being said, all of the headphones listed above that I owned were driven to acceptable listening levels from my original ak100 and HTC One.

They were loud enough, however they lacked resolution.  Details simply weren't there.  They sounded slow and lethargic.  The bass was bloated, not tight.  It lacked texture through the mids and lows (which lets face it, why the heck are we listening to planars if not for that texture).

 

There is absolutely nothing wrong with the o2 amp.  It is amazing in fact.  For the price and form factor its hard to beat.  Heck you can even buy it with a DAC in the same chassis.

If you want a small form factor, affordable amp that will make your Alpha Dogs sound good, its a great choice.  I am thinking of picking one up soon myself)

 

However if you are on a bit of a budget and you really want to squeeze those planar's I suggest something like the Schiit Lyr.  It has buckets of power and you will really begin to understand what these cans are capable of.  Sure it will go louder than the o2, but heck the o2 will drive them louder than you can listen, so at this point its not about volume, its about resolution.  Grabbing those drivers by the balls and moving them as quickly and firmly as possible.  

Think of a low efficiency planar like a 2 tonne car with tall gears and a caravan on the back.  If you have 200ft p of torque, you might get it moving but its going to be slow and cumbersome, when you get to a hill or complex passage its going to struggle to keep up.  Sure it might get you there, but its not going to be the most enjoyable.

You take that engine out and replace it with a Big block torque monster and all of a sudden everything becomes easy.

 

I am not going to argue the technicalities of it, simply put I don't know them.  I just know what my ears have kindly expressed to me.

 

Yes, my LCD 2 and Mad Dogs sounded good from my ak/phone, heck better than most other cans, but they did not sound anywhere near how they should/can sound.

 

Ultimately its up to the listener, but if you are only using the Alpha's through the o2, you are selling them short.

 

As quoted above, even Audeze recommend 1w.  So why not indulge them :)


Scott

post #8333 of 8339
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wyd4 View Post
 

From limited experience with Magnetic Planar headphones ( having owned LCD2r1, LCD2.2, Mad Dog 3.2, Alpha Dog and auditioned LCD3, Oppo pm1 and the medi-evil torture device - Abyss), I can safely say that they thrive on power.

 

That being said, all of the headphones listed above that I owned were driven to acceptable listening levels from my original ak100 and HTC One.

They were loud enough, however they lacked resolution.  Details simply weren't there.  They sounded slow and lethargic.  The bass was bloated, not tight.  It lacked texture through the mids and lows (which lets face it, why the heck are we listening to planars if not for that texture).

 

There is absolutely nothing wrong with the o2 amp.  It is amazing in fact.  For the price and form factor its hard to beat.  Heck you can even buy it with a DAC in the same chassis.

If you want a small form factor, affordable amp that will make your Alpha Dogs sound good, its a great choice.  I am thinking of picking one up soon myself)

 

However if you are on a bit of a budget and you really want to squeeze those planar's I suggest something like the Schiit Lyr.  It has buckets of power and you will really begin to understand what these cans are capable of.  Sure it will go louder than the o2, but heck the o2 will drive them louder than you can listen, so at this point its not about volume, its about resolution.  Grabbing those drivers by the balls and moving them as quickly and firmly as possible.  

Think of a low efficiency planar like a 2 tonne car with tall gears and a caravan on the back.  If you have 200ft p of torque, you might get it moving but its going to be slow and cumbersome, when you get to a hill or complex passage its going to struggle to keep up.  Sure it might get you there, but its not going to be the most enjoyable.

You take that engine out and replace it with a Big block torque monster and all of a sudden everything becomes easy.

 

I am not going to argue the technicalities of it, simply put I don't know them.  I just know what my ears have kindly expressed to me.

 

Yes, my LCD 2 and Mad Dogs sounded good from my ak/phone, heck better than most other cans, but they did not sound anywhere near how they should/can sound.

 

Ultimately its up to the listener, but if you are only using the Alpha's through the o2, you are selling them short.

 

As quoted above, even Audeze recommend 1w.  So why not indulge them :)


Scott

I agree I don't think the o2 is capable of putting out earthquake-like bass that the Alpha Dog is capable of when driven correctly and with the right song. What I love about the AD is that whatever the bass on the track is like, that's what you get. If the track is bass-heavy so will the AD, if the bass is of a guitar and not of an 808 kick, it has the resolution to image a bass guitar accurately.

post #8334 of 8339
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wyd4 View Post
 

From limited experience with Magnetic Planar headphones ( having owned LCD2r1, LCD2.2, Mad Dog 3.2, Alpha Dog and auditioned LCD3, Oppo pm1 and the medi-evil torture device - Abyss), I can safely say that they thrive on power.

 

That being said, all of the headphones listed above that I owned were driven to acceptable listening levels from my original ak100 and HTC One.

They were loud enough, however they lacked resolution.  Details simply weren't there.  They sounded slow and lethargic.  The bass was bloated, not tight.  It lacked texture through the mids and lows (which lets face it, why the heck are we listening to planars if not for that texture).

 

There is absolutely nothing wrong with the o2 amp.  It is amazing in fact.  For the price and form factor its hard to beat.  Heck you can even buy it with a DAC in the same chassis.

If you want a small form factor, affordable amp that will make your Alpha Dogs sound good, its a great choice.  I am thinking of picking one up soon myself)

 

However if you are on a bit of a budget and you really want to squeeze those planar's I suggest something like the Schiit Lyr.  It has buckets of power and you will really begin to understand what these cans are capable of.  Sure it will go louder than the o2, but heck the o2 will drive them louder than you can listen, so at this point its not about volume, its about resolution.  Grabbing those drivers by the balls and moving them as quickly and firmly as possible.  

Think of a low efficiency planar like a 2 tonne car with tall gears and a caravan on the back.  If you have 200ft p of torque, you might get it moving but its going to be slow and cumbersome, when you get to a hill or complex passage its going to struggle to keep up.  Sure it might get you there, but its not going to be the most enjoyable.

You take that engine out and replace it with a Big block torque monster and all of a sudden everything becomes easy.

 

I am not going to argue the technicalities of it, simply put I don't know them.  I just know what my ears have kindly expressed to me.

 

Yes, my LCD 2 and Mad Dogs sounded good from my ak/phone, heck better than most other cans, but they did not sound anywhere near how they should/can sound.

 

Ultimately its up to the listener, but if you are only using the Alpha's through the o2, you are selling them short.

 

As quoted above, even Audeze recommend 1w.  So why not indulge them :)


Scott


This is good information for a Newb like me. Thank you.

 

I have two questions:

 

1) Have you heard the Alpha Dogs with an O2 or are you assuming they will sound better through a Lyr based on your other experiences with amps that are similar to the O2 specs? (This is not a rhetorical question at all, I just want to understand your frame of reference)

 

2) If the Lyr2 represents the most logical upgrade in the sub $500 range over the O2 then what would you consider to be the best $700 to $900 upgrade? 

 

Cheers 

post #8335 of 8339
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alphanewb View Post
 


This is good information for a Newb like me. Thank you.

 

I have two questions:

 

1) Have you heard the Alpha Dogs with an O2 or are you assuming they will sound better through a Lyr based on your other experiences with amps that are similar to the O2 specs? (This is not a rhetorical question at all, I just want to understand your frame of reference)

 

2) If the Lyr2 represents the most logical upgrade in the sub $500 range over the O2 then what would you consider to be the best $700 to $900 upgrade? 

 

Cheers 

I haven't had any issues driving my Alpha's with my O2, but I haven't personally tried a Lyr with the Alpha yet. From most experience that I've had with solid state amps, the headphones themselves seem to make the biggest difference, rather than the amp. I haven't tried a tube/hybrid yet, but I imagine it's a very different story there.

post #8336 of 8339
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alphanewb View Post
 


This is good information for a Newb like me. Thank you.

 

I have two questions:

 

1) Have you heard the Alpha Dogs with an O2 or are you assuming they will sound better through a Lyr based on your other experiences with amps that are similar to the O2 specs? (This is not a rhetorical question at all, I just want to understand your frame of reference)

 

2) If the Lyr2 represents the most logical upgrade in the sub $500 range over the O2 then what would you consider to be the best $700 to $900 upgrade? 

 

Cheers 

 

I have heard the Alpha Dogs with both the o2 and the Lyr.  The o2 does a stellar job :), particularly if it is important for you that your amp be transportable, heck it even runs off a battery so it would be a nice coffee shop setup.

Other options for such a "coffee shop" setup with planars is the ALO Pan Am stack.

 

I ran my Alpha's for the most part at a compromise as well as I needed a transportable rig to and from work as that is where I do most of my listening and I work from multiple offices depending on the day.

 

But ultimately if you are stationary, something like a Lyr is definately worth that little extra.

 

As for moving up from there I have only heard the LCD's on a Cavalli on a demo, but that is well above your range currently.

 

Perhaps someone else has some input for this price range.

post #8337 of 8339
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wyd4 View Post
 

 

I have heard the Alpha Dogs with both the o2 and the Lyr.  The o2 does a stellar job :), particularly if it is important for you that your amp be transportable, heck it even runs off a battery so it would be a nice coffee shop setup.

Other options for such a "coffee shop" setup with planars is the ALO Pan Am stack.

 

I ran my Alpha's for the most part at a compromise as well as I needed a transportable rig to and from work as that is where I do most of my listening and I work from multiple offices depending on the day.

 

But ultimately if you are stationary, something like a Lyr is definately worth that little extra.

 

As for moving up from there I have only heard the LCD's on a Cavalli on a demo, but that is well above your range currently.

 

Perhaps someone else has some input for this price range.

So I've messed around a bit with my Alpha Dogs and have settled on a 15 degree turn of the pads along with one tuning disc per side. I listened to Daft Punk - RAM last night and really enjoyed the O2 / AD combo. So I'm really happy with my current set up! And as you've said above it will make a great "coffee shop" set up or in my case at least I plan to spend some of my downtime next summer in the backyard, I'm really happy that I went with the amp only battery powered option! I'm sure the ALO Pan Am stack would be a better sounding set up but I am very pleased with the O2 as my "gateway" headphone amp. My next amp will be my "end-game" set up with the goal of the best possible sound I can get out of my AD's (and likely some open planars in the future) for a given price, I just need to settle on how much I want to spend...

post #8338 of 8339

Curious if anybody has had the opportunity to hear the Alpha Dogs with the Turbo Charged O2 yet...    I've got one on order but have not heard it... should be interesting to compare with the standard O2 version as the Turbo has some very nice specs...

post #8339 of 8339
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dixter View Post
 

Curious if anybody has had the opportunity to hear the Alpha Dogs with the Turbo Charged O2 yet...    I've got one on order but have not heard it... should be interesting to compare with the standard O2 version as the Turbo has some very nice specs...

 

If you mean agdr's O2 booster board, then yes, and the combo is very nice!  Use the "search this thread" button up top and type in "agdr."  You will see the relevant posts.  

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