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The Stax Thread III - Page 118

post #1756 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by dripf View Post

I'm sorry, but this discussion is deranged madness. I'm saving up for one of these models and have been reading people's experiences with them.

The 404 and 303 are supposed to 'suck', being white-hot strident with an "impossible peak" and no inter-unit variation by the word of internet Stax experts. The x07 series are supposed to be 'fixed', and you tell me the previous series is smooth by comparison?

That was my understanding as well (haven't experienced a lambda that did not have this etch though).

I did not ever read about measurability of the famous treble etch, my guess is it lies in the csd curve / transient response (some underdamped resonance(s) in the mid or or upper midrange) you wouldn't see anything in the typical FR charts if these resonances don't stand out there (look for ridges that appears after the initial decay of the csd).
post #1757 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by dripf View Post
 

 

I'm sorry, but this discussion is deranged madness. I'm saving up for one of these models and have been reading people's experiences with them.

 

The 404 and 303 are supposed to 'suck', being white-hot strident with an "impossible peak" and no inter-unit variation by the word of internet Stax experts. The x07 series are supposed to be 'fixed', and you tell me the previous series is smooth by comparison?

 

Did you mean your 404LE, or have you heard these?

 

I've looked at the data on the internet available for the 404 and 207. Alongside a small high frequency attenuation, they are identical to the thirty year old model!. Where are these defects located? What is their Frequency and BW Oct? Three minutes and a youtube sine sweep is sufficient. By mids do you mean 2 or 8 kHz?

 

As an aside, rates for second hand ebay systems are completely excessive. Averaging 75% of the price shipped of a 3170 to my country. That's for an srm-1 which has never seen maintenance and a lambda pro for which I must pore over photos if available for perforations and defects.

There are differences in the driver tension that differentiates many (not all) of the lambda models. Among the current offerings the 207 is supposed to be the best (not my account), and I imagine by their used prices the 40x, 30x models you should be able to audition something that fits your needs.

 

You are looking in the wrong place if you want quantifiable data, and I'm not sure what you were looking for by reading people's subjective experiences with them? I'm sorry to hear about your import woes.

 

There is also a breakdown of the SR-507 somewhere that points out some structural frame/driver assembly changes that stax adopted over the adhesive-based(?) solutions of the previous generations. This is all from poor memory so take it how you will.


Edited by NoPants - 3/19/14 at 1:56pm
post #1758 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by ThePartyPooper View Post
 

I finally joined the Stax ranks. Now a proud owner of of an SR-202 and SRM-252II  :) 

Good choice : D
He will give you envy to discover of other pearl of Stax : )

post #1759 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by dripf View Post
 

 

I'm sorry, but this discussion is deranged madness. I'm saving up for one of these models and have been reading people's experiences with them.

 

The 404 and 303 are supposed to 'suck', being white-hot strident with an "impossible peak" and no inter-unit variation by the word of internet Stax experts. The x07 series are supposed to be 'fixed', and you tell me the previous series is smooth by comparison?

 

Don't know which Stax experts you're referring to but those that have owned, heard the whole lot here including myself would put the new x07 Lambda's on the bottom of the list. The 207 is a slight exception. 

post #1760 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by dripf View PostI'm sorry, but this discussion is deranged madness. I'm saving up for one of these models and have been reading people's experiences with them.

This is the only statement I would believe to be accurate regarding the Lambda generations.

 

Even impressions on the new Lambda line by the Don (where is he these days?) have flip-flopped over the course of one or two years.

 

I would say that the only conclusive way to be sure is to hear them side-by-side, but this is of course easier said than done.

 

This isn't just a case restricted to Lambdas either. Read comparative impressions between the SR-007 vs. SR-009, SR-007 vs. SR-Omega, and SR-009 vs. SR-Omega and you'll find the same complete absence of a proper consensus.


Edited by 3X0 - 3/19/14 at 3:26pm
post #1761 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3X0 View Post
 

This is the only statement I would believe to be accurate regarding the Lambda generations.

 

Even impressions on the new Lambda line by the Don (where is he these days?) have flip-flopped over the course of one or two years.

 

I would say that the only conclusive way to be sure is to hear them side-by-side, but this is of course easier said than done.

True. Proper general consensuses seem to be pretty hard to reach within the realm of stax and this thread.

post #1762 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by davidsh View Post
 

True. Proper general consensuses seem to be pretty hard to reach within the realm of stax and this thread.


I disagree...:tongue_smile: 
just cuz...

 

But on another note, 3X0 "The 323S is surprisingly "just right" with the SR-009 and SR-Omega IMHO."  So you would consider this a viable option for an interim amp while waiting on a TOTL (BHSE or the like)?

post #1763 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by dripf View Post
 

 

I'm sorry, but this discussion is deranged madness. I'm saving up for one of these models and have been reading people's experiences with them.

 

The 404 and 303 are supposed to 'suck', being white-hot strident with an "impossible peak" and no inter-unit variation by the word of internet Stax experts. The x07 series are supposed to be 'fixed', and you tell me the previous series is smooth by comparison?

 

Had the 303's and now the 404LE's ... I find them very similar and not white hot strident at all. 

 

Also had the 307's very recently, for about three months, and did not find them white hot strident at all, either. I did find to be rather glaring in the midrange compared to the 303's and 404LE's, though. So much to my ear that I sold them pretty quick. 

 

White hot strident? I'd call Grado RS1's at times white hot strident ... and the GS1000's I had for a very long time and mostly loved to be occasionally off-white hot strident ... but any of the Lambda's I've heard? I haven't found any of them to be strident in the high frequencies at all. Just varying levels of "etch" in the mid range. 

 

I've found the 303's, 404LE's ... and especially the pair of Koss ESP-950's I currently have to be the least "etched" of any thing I've heard. And I haven't even started up the ranks of the really expensive Stax stuff yet.

 

Get the cans and decide for yourself mate. 


Edited by s1rrah - 3/19/14 at 5:40pm
post #1764 of 3324
The 507s I owned had zero etch and no hot treble. In fact, I thought it sounded slightly warm. The size and shape of your ears as well as how well you can seal the phones will have a BIG effect on the sound. This is one reason for the lack of consensus on many models.
post #1765 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonathan66100 View Post
 

Good choice : D
He will give you envy to discover of other pearl of Stax : )

I just hope I get the chance for my wallet to recover first! :D

post #1766 of 3324

My Lambda Signature have a very nice etch.  I like the etch.  It is some kind of treble emphasis- either in the frequency domain or the time domain, or both, but it has a certain subtlety to it that keeps from being painful / irritating, IMHO. It's a treble emphasis of some kind, bringing out out detail without being  overly strident or tizzy.  Somewhere I've read that the Signatures etch is the most easily heard of all the Stax headphones. Could be. I had a pair of 'regular' Lambda Pros and they were closer to neutral, didn't notice any etch in comparison to the Lambda Signature's. 

 

The etch makes treble detail stand out a little, which can be a fun sound.  Accurate / neutral  -  not so much.  But it can be likeable.  And also can be useful when trying to hear a specific thing in a recording.  If I only had ONE pair of headphones, though, they could not be Lambda Signatures- it's nice to have the option of listening to the etch, but I wouldn't want it to be the ONLY way I could hear music.

post #1767 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by milosz View Post
 

My Lambda Signature have a very nice etch.  I like the etch.  It is some kind of treble emphasis- either in the frequency domain or the time domain, or both, but it has a certain subtlety to it that keeps from being painful / irritating, IMHO. It's a treble emphasis of some kind, bringing out out detail without being  overly strident or tizzy.  Somewhere I've read that the Signatures etch is the most easily heard of all the Stax headphones. Could be. I had a pair of 'regular' Lambda Pros and they were closer to neutral, didn't notice any etch in comparison to the Lambda Signature's. 

 

The etch makes treble detail stand out a little, which can be a fun sound.  Accurate / neutral  -  not so much.  But it can be likeable.  And also can be useful when trying to hear a specific thing in a recording.  If I only had ONE pair of headphones, though, they could not be Lambda Signatures- it's nice to have the option of listening to the etch, but I wouldn't want it to be the ONLY way I could hear music.

Yeah, with the LS it just sounds like there are more details without getting harsh or jarring sound, kinda too detailed and airy to be neutral. My understanding is, that there are 3 narrow peaks in the treble if I remember correctly.

 

The 307 oth sounds nothing like the LS with regards to 'treble etch' going from memory.

post #1768 of 3324

My 507 doesn't have etch either, and it's warm sounding. As open as the HD800, but warmer and less grainy.

 

But this post is about the SR-007 Mk1. I always wondered why Spritzer says it's the best headphones Stax made. He called my attention to setting the headband properly.

I've been playing a lot with the 007, and have ended up with some delightful discoveries.

 

While wobbling around the 009, I discovered the versatility of the 007-Mk1, which I can now make sound like... I want it. It can sound closed in with a lot of deep bass or as open as the 009 (within some debated limits of course) with more neutral and dry sound. Cutting the crap, here are my learnings:

 

1. It is so extremely sensitive to headband and earpad adjustments (even slight mods). The first revelation came when I made the headbands shape similar to that of the 507, i.e. flatter in the middle, the leather headband almost touching the metal bands. Then, set the angle of the drivers from the ends of the metal headbands, to follow the head and ensure even and the right amount of pressure around the ear. A lot of variables on how to achieve this one. The effect is opening up the sound and maximizing the snap and bass impact.

 

2. After the headbands are properly adjusted, then by rotating the earpad springs around the clock while keeping the pads still, the sound is affected between warm, melodic & a bit closed sound to completely open, neutral and more dry, and in between the two ends. I love it - and for what it's worth, I usually end up settling the spring at the positions mapping to 4-5 pm on the clock, where it has deep, well defined bass with an excellent base resonance, and it's open and fluid sounding in the same time. It can sound a bit syrupy and laid back around the 3 pm position, and getting more dry and more forward at 6 pm.

 

3. Setting the spring is easy since after a lot of testing, I stopped using the grills, and keep the phones in the box when not used, to prevent dust damage. Fortunately the air is very clean here.

 

4. Since I have 2 pads, and older and a new one, I modified the old pads while comparing them to the new. Based on countless experiments, I can say the best mod is to trim the soft part of the internal foam just lightly (~ 2 mm) from the thin (front) end, making it tilt more. This also accentuates the effect of setting the spring position. Skip this if you want, as this is non-reversible, or like me, do it with one pad and keep the other unchanged.

 

In the end I love this versatility to set the sonics to my mood and the music. I don't miss the 009 that much any more (the 007 is kind of more fluid). The SR-009 definitely has its own merits, but now I know what Spritzer meant about the excellency of the 007 Mk1. I can still imagine better sound, but it's good enough for me for a long while.

 

I think it is impossible to review the 007 Mk1 properly, unless the reviewer takes the time to properly adjust and personalize the 007. My settings are likely non-optimal for others, but my wife and kids hear similar differences with it as I do, so the mods definitely have some value.

 

I would be useful if 007 Mk1 owners could try and verify these, except perhaps step 4.


Edited by zolkis - 3/20/14 at 2:44pm
post #1769 of 3324
I can really relate to this. After some time fussing around I really found the 007 sound to open up nicely. Biggest gains were with improved bass impact, though it is still light compared to some ortho's (I can live with it.) I also found the spot for me where the phones really disappear which helps increase that sense of sound coming from behind you. It catches me off guard quite often.

Edited by paradoxper - 3/20/14 at 10:12am
post #1770 of 3324
Quote:
Originally Posted by bearFNF View PostBut on another note, 3X0 "The 323S is surprisingly "just right" with the SR-009 and SR-Omega IMHO."  So you would consider this a viable option for an interim amp while waiting on a TOTL (BHSE or the like)?

I can't say, but I tend to be far more of an objectivist than most here (and have an appropriately skeptical wallet).

 

I'm not sure I'd be able to discern improvements in the BHSE versus anything lesser with any semblance of confidence, but I have yet to hear it at length.

 

I certainly didn't perceive the KGSSHV to be much of an improvement over the 323S and in fact took some issue with what I perceived to be a slightly bright tonality with the Omega (not so much with the 007Mk1). The caveat is that meet conditions are of course far short of conducive to meaningful comparisons, but I was not inspired to rush out and commission a DIY build from what I heard.

 

The 323S is just a $500-700 amplifier that gets the job done without any issues worth crying about. I'm definitely in the minority here but  I'll sooner spend 10x as much on another SR-Omega than anything else...


Edited by 3X0 - 3/20/14 at 10:25am
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