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Which Audeze is the one for me?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

I listen to all kinds of pop music from Evanescence to Robbie Williams. Lana del Rey (yes i agree she can't actually sing but technology made her sound perfect) to Breaking Benjamin.

 

Format FLAC on Ultrabook (Laptop)

Might use USB DAC if needed to but prefer portability

 

Sound signature:

Lots of bass - must have quality and quantity right to the lowest sub bass notes

Good soundstage imperative

Cannot tolerate sibilance

Like to have decent midrange and treble but MUST have oodles impactful bass

 

Of course if I can get away with the LCD 2 it's cheaper but if i can get better I will invest.

 

Also are there any other options apart from the LCDs

 

Thanks

 

(my nearest audition shop is 600 miles by flight or 1600 miles to the nearest country - could be going to the next country in the next 24 months)

 

PS current cans

- HD600 via Dell Haswell XPS 15 (Dell MaxAudio MaxBass at 100%) - love the soundstage and clarity and detail but not enough treble and too much midrange without EQ and definitely not enough bass for me although it extends to the lowest sub bass notes you can find hence I am always listening to them with EQ'd bass to the max.

- Westone W3 - sibilance hurts me - not as detailed as HD600 clarity definitely lacking too. bass does not extend as low as I like but the quantity is beginning to be adequate, i still EQ up the bass a tinge

- used to plug the Fiio E17 to my laptops (got 5) but it is not able to drive the EQ'd bass to the HD600 and it clips, moreover the midrange is way too piercing if there's a word. some people say all DACs are the same i'm not so sure! how can a crappy Dell MaxAudio hardware+software processing delivery superior quantity of bass and quality of midrange!


Edited by joker97 - 1/31/14 at 2:54pm
post #2 of 17
Thread Starter 

sorry if I asked a dumb Q

 

can anyone help?

post #3 of 17

LCD2 isn't very portable friendly, in fact none of the audeze are. You 100% will need an amp, straight from a laptop will not have near enough power. You'd be looking at getting something like a pico power or another powerful portable amp and then still a dac even then I'm not sure that you will be getting near to the full quality available. It is a waste of money itself to buy such a good headphone and plug them into a schiit laptop soundcard do yourself the favor to get a dac and amp when you upgrade.

 

Interesting you are eqing the bass massively up on the hd600 and it still is too weak? The Audeze have phenomenal bass quality and while more powerful than most other high end models it is not extreme basshead levels.

 

Considering your desire for extreme bass and extension in the high end plus portability I think the ultrasone Signature DJ would be down your alley. It is more powerful in the bass than the LCD series as well as having some superb bass quality (at least at that elevated level). I ruled out the TH600 on your quota of sibilance as it can bit very glasslike in certain upper registers. The Signature DJ soundstage will not be as big as the HD600, but most cans that are both portable and bass heavy won't. Most bass heavy headphones do not have the soundstage size of their more analytical brethren except Denons D2000/5000/7000 and Fostex TH series, but the TH series in particular tend to need amping due to sensitivity. 

 

Do you also listen to a lot of EDM like Dubstep, Trance, House ect...?

 

None of the artists you mentioned I would associate with deep sub bass or being bass heavy at all. Personally I don't listen to rock much on my TH600's as I prefer a bit less bass for rock music ~ more midrange importance. Neither would having flac vs mp3 matter as much as they are not typically that high standard recordings. I can't imagine how muddy the HD600 must sound, depending on your laptop they might be underpowered themselves and not at their best as you don't seem to be using a dac or amp.

 

Considering the comment made that the HD600 has too much midrange for you then the Sig DJ fits even more as it is U shaped somewhat, lower in the mids than treble and bass. Not sibilant for me at least.

post #4 of 17
Thread Starter 

Hi many thanks for your reply.

 

1) Whoops I thought my Senn was hard to drive at 300Ohm, and that the LCD2 at 40Ohm would be piece of cake! Is there another factor I'm oblivious to (*blush)?

 

2) By portability I mean taking things from one room to another, not out of the house, and I realise the LCDs weigh a tonne. THanks :D

 

3) I probably should fly the miles and audition but my understanding was the Audeze is like a senn 600/650 on steroids - I really love the space and the detail and the timbre of the HD600 and just wanted more bass. I am ok with the midrange of the HD600, but find it shouty when I ramp up the volume. I heard the midrange of the LCD2 is less fatiguing so that's great.

 

4) I am not sure about a U shaped can as I have the Westone W3 which is a little U and I am losing a lot of midrange for my liking. I have a feeling more bass quantity and more treble quality vs HD600 is what I need. I find that bass heavy cans tend to miss the mark on the midrange and give me too much treble.

 

5) No I don't do dubstep/trance, only pop.

 

6) It's a shame I missed out on sales on Philips SPH 9000 (no longer sold, when it was on clearance I was too immature to understand its merits), and the recent 50% off Philips Fidelio X1, both of which would blow my brains out with bass at minimal cost :D at the expense of other quality

post #5 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by joker97 View Post
 

Hi many thanks for your reply.

 

1) Whoops I thought my Senn was hard to drive at 300Ohm, and that the LCD2 at 40Ohm would be piece of cake! Is there another factor I'm oblivious to (*blush)?

 

2) By portability I mean taking things from one room to another, not out of the house, and I realise the LCDs weigh a tonne. THanks :D

 

3) I probably should fly the miles and audition but my understanding was the Audeze is like a senn 600/650 on steroids - I really love the space and the detail and the timbre of the HD600 and just wanted more bass. I am ok with the midrange of the HD600, but find it shouty when I ramp up the volume. I heard the midrange of the LCD2 is less fatiguing so that's great.

 

4) I am not sure about a U shaped can as I have the Westone W3 which is a little U and I am losing a lot of midrange for my liking. I have a feeling more bass quantity and more treble quality vs HD600 is what I need. I find that bass heavy cans tend to miss the mark on the midrange and give me too much treble.

 

5) No I don't do dubstep/trance, only pop.

 

6) It's a shame I missed out on sales on Philips SPH 9000 (no longer sold, when it was on clearance I was too immature to understand its merits), and the recent 50% off Philips Fidelio X1, both of which would blow my brains out with bass at minimal cost :D at the expense of other quality

 

What is more important than the ohm rating is sensitivity which is rated usually in db/mw. The other thing is that planars tend to sound better the more power you feed them. Audeze have recommended something like 2 watts output power to be optimal.

 

I'll give you an example on my amp on low gain the HD600 reaches high listening volume at 1-2 o clock while on high gain which is 10 times as powerful the LCD2 needs 12 o clock hd600 very loud at lowest settings.

 

The LCD2 has awesome mid range thats for sure less forward than the HD600 but the treble is weaker. The LCDX has improved treble response.

 

I can talk more later.

post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 

wow i learnt something new today :D just like loudspeakers headphones have a sensitivity rating!

 

no wonder my westone W3 hisses like a snake at 108dB/mW

HD600 is 97 vs LCD-2 at 91 which is very very soft :D

 

definitely needs a piece of Schiit to drive it then ... i had my eyes set on the asgard but couldn't bear the cost of a DAC

 

I wonder if I should get a Fidelio X1 just to satisfy my cravings

post #7 of 17
Try an audio gd product I own the NFB 28 now had the NFB 5 in the past work very well with lcd2. The lowest in the line can even power therm and have an inbuilt DAC.
post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 

thanks I had toyed around the idea of the NFB12.1 in the past but didn't go past ponder.

 

may I ask what is the benefit of a balanced DAC-amp? (as it is $500 more than the 12.1)

post #9 of 17
Balanced offers more power is one thing. Otherwise its highly debated what the improvements are objective vs subjective blah blah. I only grabbed a 28 as I got it at a steal from a mate.

For a lcd2 alone I would stick single ended to save your cash.
post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 

hmm so a solid amp has the lowest output impedence possible (although a minority say output impedence matching is good - what the??)

-> that would mean a schiit asgard (the $230 audiogd 15 has output impedence of 32)

 

but the schiit doesn't have a DAC.

how do i look for a good DAC? would my fiio E17 be a good DAC?

post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 
Is there an amp/dac portable or otherwise that is as clean (not necessarily powerful) as the asgard - bifrost combo for under $500?
post #12 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by joker97 View Post
 

(the $230 audiogd 15 has output impedence of 32)

"2 ohm /  Headphone output" Is the output impedance for the Audio-GD 11.32 and 15.32, which are both clean with lots of power as well. Even with shipping, customs fees, and TXCO upgrades, you'd still be under $500 for either.

post #13 of 17
Thread Starter 

thanks for the correction OOPS

 

so the nfb 15 vs 11 is the exact same thing apart from the "filters" on the 15 and the DAC?

 

which one is better - or are they both the same to a normal audiophile (not normal human)?

post #14 of 17

AFAIK, the amp sections are the same, but the difference is in the DAC section. The 15.32 is based off a relatively more musical chip with many filter options, while still offering great detail, and the 11.32 uses a chip that is often found in very high-end products, which is supposed to focus more on detail and neutrality. Either one should be incredible, and the differences are probably not as big as price would indicate.

post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 

ok thanks ... waiting to hear back from him

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