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post #16 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by ag8908 View Post
 

Less crisp, less detail, warmer. Like the effect of going from FM radio to AM radio.

 

Please note I listen to my setup in 5.1 surround sound (my receiver converts the 2 channel input into 5.1 using a variety of codecs, e.g. dolby I, dolby II, neo etc., or just pumping it out of all five equally without any codec, which sounds best to me).

 

What can't you get from speakers?

 

Sounds like your receiver's headphone amp is crappy. It's very rare to hear that a TOTL headphone is beaten in detail/clarity by a 5.1 1000usd setup.

post #17 of 71
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by elmoe View Post
 

 

Sounds like your receiver's headphone amp is crappy. It's very rare to hear that a TOTL headphone is beaten in detail/clarity by a 5.1 1000usd setup.

 

But if you look at the pieces, the 5.1 system is driving six separate speakers of 5" to 7" (not to mention the tweeters) + a subwoofer, all positioned around my ears, some 3 feet away, some 11 feet away, and calibrated so that all deliver about the same dB to my ear. These aren't top of the line speakers, but they're not super cheap speakers either. Their market value when I purchased them was probably about $500 or so (one half of the $1,000 speaker + receiver package I'm guessing).

 

The HD800 has two tiny 1-2" drivers. If you think of it, how could the HD800 possibly outperform the speaker setup in any sound metric, really in any way?

 

The problem is that if I want to really have fun, and have about 62-67db of music (measured at my ear, as opposed to at the speaker) I have to turn the speakers up so loud that my neighbor will probably hear it. And I listen at relatively low volumes, some people on Head-Fi like 85db and above of dBa when measured at their ear, which would require booming the stereo, something that only a person with land and property can do (and no family).


Edited by ag8908 - 3/15/14 at 5:37am
post #18 of 71

The technology that goes into building the HD800 and your speakers is very different, you can't compare size.

 

There are CIEMs worth hundreds of dollars that will greatly outperform much bigger 20 dollar headphones for example.

post #19 of 71
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by elmoe View Post
 

The technology that goes into building the HD800 and your speakers is very different, you can't compare size.

 

There are CIEMs worth hundreds of dollars that will greatly outperform much bigger 20 dollar headphones for example.

 

Isn't the HD800's technology just a driver just like the speaker, expect much smaller and placed much closer to your ears? I agree that at some point a driver is so poorly made that it's terrible, like a clock radio speaker as an extreme example, but these speakers aren't of that subpar quality.

post #20 of 71

You'd be surprised by the difference in technology between speakers, even in the same price range.

post #21 of 71
Thread Starter 

Well, even if you just compare headphones to headphones, the HD800 isn't that much better than a solid $300 to $500 headphone. I agree it's noticeably (i.e. not imagination) better in its engineering which is why I purchased and kept mine but I have to confess it's not that much better. Similarly, I think there is a point in speakers at which they've crossed the threshold into the "good" category. I don't know what an excellent speaker sounds like, but this setup really does sound very good, very natural, and very detailed, even relatively to the first-class HD800.

 

In general one thing I've noticed on head-fi, when people casually mention their lifestyle, is that they are either (a) always out and about and so need a headphone for portability, (b) they have families that won't let them play loud music; or (c) they live in apartments and are concerned that loud music will eventually get a complaint from a neighbor. Elmo, do you have room to enjoy a nice speaker setup?


Edited by ag8908 - 3/15/14 at 6:36am
post #22 of 71

Unfortunately the room I'm in isn't as big as I would like for my floorstanding (though small) Dynaudio Audience 62 speakers, but I listen to music quite loud and very frequently without problem. I've always thought the HD800 is way overpriced so no argument from me there ;)

 

This is my setup:

 

post #23 of 71
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by elmoe View Post
 

Unfortunately the room I'm in isn't as big as I would like for my floorstanding (though small) Dynaudio Audience 62 speakers, but I listen to music quite loud and very frequently without problem. I've always thought the HD800 is way overpriced so no argument from me there ;)

 

This is my setup:

 

 

When you have time you should consider getting additional speakers behind you. Huge improvement in experience in my opinion, especially if you can play them loud.

 

I don't dislike the HD800. They're basically the best headphones I could find so far (the only other really high end ones I've tried are the Audeze LCD XC and Beyerdynamic T1) so I can't complain.

post #24 of 71

Naw, I would rather invest in better acoustic treatment when I move to a bigger room. I like a stereo setup for music, which is mostly what I use speakers for.

post #25 of 71
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by elmoe View Post
 

Naw, I would rather invest in better acoustic treatment when I move to a bigger room. I like a stereo setup for music, which is mostly what I use speakers for.


Yeah my room is pretty big so that might help in some way. But if I switch my receiver from outputting to 2 speakers to outputting to 5.1 speakers (the system just pumps the same two channels out of all five speakers) that creates a very noticeable improvement. You still get the stereo effect (two right speakers vs. two left), but now it's all around you. Plus the receiver has this cool way of using a microphone to automatically calibrate the sound so you get the same dB from each speaker.


Edited by ag8908 - 3/15/14 at 7:53am
post #26 of 71

You should try demo'ing a good stereo hi-end setup at a shop sometime, with carefully placed speakers and proper acoustic treatment, 5.1 can't touch a stereo system in my opinion (for music).

post #27 of 71
Thread Starter 

By the way, what's that drink on your desk? Scotch?

post #28 of 71
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by elmoe View Post
 

You should try demo'ing a good stereo hi-end setup at a shop sometime, with carefully placed speakers and proper acoustic treatment, 5.1 can't touch a stereo system in my opinion (for music).


I totally would do this, but it's pointless because I really shouldn't be playing my stereo loud.

post #29 of 71

Yeah if you can't use your stereo loud it's a pain, but it's still worth hearing what a really good system sounds like! And yes, I like a little Scotch with my music.

post #30 of 71

It's hard to judge any system by price alone without hearing it. But in a good room, and properly set up, just about any halfway decent speaker system will have better imaging of sound stage than headphones. When it comes to the balance of the response and clarity, cheaper headphones are more liable to do a good job than cheaper speakers. But with really good speakers, no headphone can compare. 5:1 has a definite edge over 2 channel if the system is set up for music, not home theater. But six really good speakers are much more expensive than just two.


Edited by bigshot - 3/15/14 at 3:33pm
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