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LFF Paradox Slant and the "Starving Student"

post #1 of 64
Thread Starter 

Recently, I purchased the very first "Starving Student" edition Paradox Slant. Since receiving it, I've spent a significant time listening to it and I'm starting to get a grasp of what this headphone really is.

 

LFF describes the Paradox Slant as a "classic" Paradox with a slight bass boost and an enhanced soundstage. I haven't heard the original Paradox, but having read some impressions describing the bass as anemic and the soundstage as somewhat small or closed, I can only assume that LFF achieved his design goals with the Slant. I would never describe the bass as anemic and I wouldn't call the soundstage on the Slant small unless you listen exclusively to studio recordings which generally offer smaller soundstage on any headphone.

 

This headphone is neutral sounding overall, with a very slight emphasis on the bass response. This doesn't mean that the bass is boomy, muddy or excessive by any means. It's still very close to neutral. It simply offers a touch of extra "oomph" for listeners that prefer to feel the kick drum in addition to hearing it. The midrange is fantastic. It is neutral, clean and detailed. This headphone exhibits the now cliche planar midrange. It never sounds grainy. It is smooth and it just sounds right. The treble sounds like it may have a slight roll off toward the top, similar to other T50RP mods. However, the roll off is less dramatic and the treble sounds very close to neutral as a result. This is brighter than the Mad Dog 3.2, for instance. The treble sounds a bit more similar to the HD600, if memory serves me right. Unlike the MD, I've never listened to the Slant and felt a need to bump up the treble using EQ. It is never harsh, but it also doesn't ever sound like anything is missing.

 

The Slant is also very comfortable; I would say that it is the most comfortable one I've owned. The HD600 and MD 3.2 tie for a close second place, for different reasons. The HD600 is very light and has a comfortable headband but had a pretty strong clamping force for as long as I owned them and though the velour fabric was soft to the touch, the earpads were pretty firm and did little to alleviate the pressure that the headphones applied to my head. The MD 3.2, on the other hand, is heavier, but offers a similarly comfortable headband and some more cushion-y pads. The Slant is similar to a combination between the two. Despite being nearly as heavy as the MD, the Slant offers far better weight distribution using a suspension headband. It's a very simple solution to the weight problem; LFF hangs a thin, wide strip of soft leather between the risers on the headphone, using elastic. This allows the headphone to "float," for lack of a better way to describe it. It also uses angled leather pads, offering an experience close to MrSpeakers' Alpha Pads. The end result is a headphone that feels lighter than it really is, with a softer clamp than many other headphones.

 

Of course, for $700, you should expect a pretty high level of excellence. LFF delivers this and then some from the T50RP. The problem is that there are a lot of people who can't afford a $700 headphone, especially amongst the younger Head-Fi population. LFF goes the extra mile and solves this problem as well.

 

The "Starving Student" Paradox Slant is the same thing as the regular Paradox Slant, minus the fancier paint and cable. Externally, it looks like a plain T50RP with an additional leather suspension headband. It's not exactly pretty, nor does it look impressive, but it carries the sound of LFF's $700 headphone, at a significantly lower price: $525. This increases the value proposition by a great deal. Students, then, can get the Slant for only $30 more than the basic Paradox, offering them the ability to choose between LFF's original reference T50RP mod or the newer enhanced version without having to stretch their budgets too much if they want the Slant over the Paradox. This offer is currently only available to students. Anyone interested should contact LFF and ask for additional information.


Edited by C.C.S. - 6/28/14 at 9:57pm
post #2 of 64

Interesting read. How about posting a few pics?

 

Congrats on your purchase!! It seems that they are a hit. 

post #3 of 64
Thread Starter 

My cell phone's camera is about as bad as it gets. If you're willing to look at pictures taken on that, then I'll be happy to post them, but they certainly won't look good.

post #4 of 64

Wow, congrats!! I've been wanting to hear this headphone for a very long time, and it sounds like it fixed the stuff the Paradox did wrong. I need!;)

post #5 of 64

Is the slant hard to drive?  

post #6 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawaiiancerveza View Post
 

Is the slant hard to drive?  

To get it to sound great, or to get an appreciable volume level?

post #7 of 64

To drive properly.  

post #8 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawaiiancerveza View Post
 

To drive properly.  

Actually, LFF tunes his headphones with an O2 and other amps, so an O2 would work well.:bigsmile_face:

post #9 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfetan44 View Post
 

Actually, LFF tunes his headphones with an O2 and other amps, so an O2 would work well.:bigsmile_face:

Haha thanks.  I just placed an order.  But he did mention that the amp I am getting back will be good enough.  As far as he told me it can be run from the clip+ or even a iPhone.  I'll be using it for at home use though.  =)

post #10 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawaiiancerveza View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfetan44 View Post
 

Actually, LFF tunes his headphones with an O2 and other amps, so an O2 would work well.:bigsmile_face:

Haha thanks.  I just placed an order.  But he did mention that the amp I am getting back will be good enough.  As far as he told me it can be run from the clip+ or even a iPhone.  I'll be using it for at home use though.  =)

Congrats! I love the Slant, but I don't have one, so I'm pretty jealous;)

post #11 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfetan44 View Post
 

Congrats! I love the Slant, but I don't have one, so I'm pretty jealous;)

Thanks.  I'm getting the starving student version.  Cheaper, but sound the same.  I'll have to impatiently wait for about 2-3 weeks though...lol.  

post #12 of 64
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawaiiancerveza View Post
 

Thanks.  I'm getting the starving student version.  Cheaper, but sound the same.  I'll have to impatiently wait for about 2-3 weeks though...lol.  

 

The wait is definitely worth it. I remember sitting around, feeling like mine might arrive too late for me to use them during my winter vacation, around the middle of December. They arrived one day before I had to leave campus. Perfect timing. I spent maybe two to three hours, almost every day, with them on during the vacation. These are, without a doubt, the best headphones I've had the pleasure of experiencing thus far.

post #13 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawaiiancerveza View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfetan44 View Post
 

Congrats! I love the Slant, but I don't have one, so I'm pretty jealous;)

Thanks.  I'm getting the starving student version.  Cheaper, but sound the same.  I'll have to impatiently wait for about 2-3 weeks though...lol.  

Good choice :beerchug:

post #14 of 64

Thanks.  I can't wait to get them.  I am in school also but I'm hoping school will distract me while I wait for my UE11 (to return from a refit) and the Slant to come in. 

Quote:

Originally Posted by C.C.S. View Post
 

 

The wait is definitely worth it. I remember sitting around, feeling like mine might arrive too late for me to use them during my winter vacation, around the middle of December. They arrived one day before I had to leave campus. Perfect timing. I spent maybe two to three hours, almost every day, with them on during the vacation. These are, without a doubt, the best headphones I've had the pleasure of experiencing thus far.

 

Thanks. I'll have to wait impatiently.  I feel like Christmas is coming.  =)

Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfetan44 View Post
 

Good choice :beerchug:

post #15 of 64

The Slants are remarkable...burn-in definetly helps.  I have bought 10 hours of random noise burn on them with the jlabs burn-in app online.  Excellent tool.   

Lets just say the slants are magical devices that transport you to the performance and will involve, engage and enthrall you to a degree that will force you

into the moment in such a way that everything else will become irrelevant.   They are far more than just tonally neutral, that is only the beginning!  Muhaha!

 

%-)_,      That is my twitterpatted smiley!

 

 

Only two other devices have left me twitterpatted in the 30 years I have played with audio.   The Talon Audio Khorus, which I owned back in the day when I worked

as a loudspeaker sales rep and full cobalt transformered meshplate 2a3 Bottlehead Paraglow triode amplifiers.   These are of that ilk and comparable in terms of 

sheer enjoyment.  Albeit far more expensive.

 

The Slants are a steal at 700.  The starving student perhaps more so.  I had have better wire and I don't like connectors, avoid where ever possibly.  So mine are hardwired

with Luis rogue 7n wire.  The switchcraft 3.5 is okay.  I have some solid copper rhodium plated beauties from China, with a 3d looking carbon fiber wrap that will replace this. They

are surprisingly cheap and will match Luis' aesthtic nicely.   When I finish my gainclone amps these 3.5 will be copper rhodium plated Cardas Lugs.

 

Happy Listening %-)_,

 

jgwtriode

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