Headphone Inventory
Sennheiser HD800:
+ Forward & revealing mid-range & vocals.
+ Top tier clarity/detail retrieval.
+ Widest soundstage. Though over-hyped & not quite out of head experience type.
- Recessed/diffused/veiled/thin body of music without a top of the line amp & DAC
- Bass & dynamics only really appear with proper amping.
- Slight edge & tiniest bit of sibilance to the treble.


Meze Empyrean

ZMF Auteur


Sennheiser HD820
- Not full closed back, doesn't isolate well & leaks a lot of sound.
- Grainy resolution.
- Bass isn't tight.

Abyss 1266 Phi
-SUPER hard to drive.
-Fit is ultra finicky.

Stax L700
+ The best separation I've heard from a headphone.
+ Vocals are much more distinctively separated from the music vs the HD800/HEK.
+ Resolution/small details are better heard than the HD800.
+ Feels less prone to sibilance than the HD800.
+/- Soundstage is average. Definitely a more intimate sound presentation.
- Bass & dynamics are lacking for my tastes.
- Slightly overall thin sound signature.

Hifiman HE-1000 V1
+ Very solid soundstage. Just behind the HD800 of all the headphones I heard. Without first doing A/B tests between both, I could have sworn the HEK was almost just as wide.
+ Very thick, weighty, musical & full sounding sound signature. Makes the HD800 kinda sound thin in comparison.
+ Incredibly dynamic & separated. Maybe the best I heard. Only again, 2nd to the HD800.
+ The resolution, fullness, dynamics & soundstage are a nice improvement over the HEX v2.
+/- Sub-bass is good, but not amazing. Nothing spectacular about it like with the Fostex TH-900.
- There is a softness & lack of energy/bite to the sound. Only noticeable when compared with a high energy headphone, like the HD800.
- Midrange is good, but ever so slightly distant/diffuse. Nowhere close to being called V-shaped, just slightly behind other cans that have prominent mids.
+/- the slight softness can be remedied quite a bit with silver headphone cables & V2 earpads.
+/- The softness can also play as a strength because these cans are never fatiguing. Though, electronic music does lack the energy.
+/- The resolution/treble might not be as detailed as the HD800. Could be from the thick bass drowning out some of the smaller treble details.

Hifiman HE-X V2
+ Very good soundstage, nearly comparable to the HD800.
+ Solid sub-bass extension.
+ Neutral sound without sounding thin or lacking in any frequency.
- Mids maybe not as lush & energetic as the LCD-2 & HD800.
- Resolution is quite not on par with something like HD800 or the HEK.
- Doesn't scale with higher end equipment.

Hifiman HE-6 (4 screw)
+ Wide spacious soundstage, though not as wide as the HE-1000
- Bright sound signature
- Needs a power amp or a powerful headphone amp to drive them properly.
- Thin sounding compared to the 6 screw

Hifiman HE-6 (6 screw)
+ Warmer sounding with more mid/bass presence than the 4 screw.
+ Not as bright or sibilant either.
- Smaller more intimate soundstage & separation overall compared to the 4 screw.
- Seems a trifle harder to drive than the 4 screw version

Fostex TH-900:
+ Insane sub bass!
+ Clear clean vocals.
+ Spacious sound, especially for a closed back.
- Noticeably recessed mids, makes the music sound hollow-ish.
- Vocals & music sounds "small" compared to the HD800, LCD2, HEK etc...
- Very sibilant.
- Not true closed back, leaks sound.

ZMF Blackwoods:
+/- Good solid sub-bass extension, but not as good as the TH-900 or JVC DX-1000
+ Actually closed back that doesn't leak sound!
- Small enclosed soundstage.
- Reminds me of a warmer closed version of a HD600. Doesn't do any one thing spectacular.

JVC DX1000:
+ Fairly open sounding & spacious sounding for a closed back.
+ Very good sub-bass, somewhere in between the Fostex TH-900 & the Beyerdynamics T1.
+ Similar sound signature to Beyer T1 without being as bright.
- Not true closed back, leaks sound.
- Not quite on the level of HD800 in terms of resolution.
- Mids sounds off, a tad recessed.

JVC SZ2000:
+ Best sub-bass on the planet!
+/- Soundwaves form sub-bass hit so hard that it literally can leave bruises inside ear canal!
- Massively veiled. Most veiled headphone I've ever heard in my life.
- Incredibly low resolution sounding.
- Mids & treble are non-existent.

Audeze LCD-2 Rev.1:
+ Top tier midbass quality & quantity.
+ Thicker sound makes for excellent instrumental imaging, Bests the HD800 a lot of the time
+ Good detail retrieval, though not on par with the HD800 & the T1.
- Small-ish soundstage, vocals feel congested.
- Definitely sounds veiled & not as open.

Beyerdynamics Tesla T1:
+ Excellent top tier imaging.
+ Sub-bass is surprisingly very good. Better physical rumble than either the HD800 or the
+ Emphasized treble.
- Emphasized treble.
+ Fun sounding & musical with the right combo.
- Needs a tube amps & preferably warm sounding tubes .
- Too bright at times with the wrong gear & can sound very metallic & painfully sibilant if so.

Sennheiser HD600:
+ Very good imaging.
+ Overall good in every area, though not spectacular at any one thing.
- Veiled sound
- Absolutely needs an amp to work.
- Average soundstage

AKG K-712:
+/- Modestly wide soundstage.
+ Fairly good detail & resolution.
+ Mid-bass is adequate.
- No sub-bass extension.
- Tad bright.

Philips Fidelio X1
+ Very impressive wide soundstage
+ Great bass quantity, lots of bass.
+ Fun & musical
- Bass quantity bleeds into the midrange/vocals & overpowers it at times.
Headphone Amp Inventory

Manley Absolute


Benchmark ABH2
+ Very clean, but maybe clinical sounding.

Eddie Current Super 7:
+ Ethereal Sounding!
+ Very Airy & super dynamic.
+ Good slam/impact.
+ Incredibly low noise floor for a tube amp!
+/- Warm signature, but never gooey or ever too overtly warm sounding.
- Not the last word in bass authority.
- Not the widest sounding tube amp I've heard.

Stax SRM-007tII:

Violectric V281:
+ Very powerful & can easily handle planar headphones.
+/- Very smooth & warm sound signature without making things too overtly warm or smooth.
- Soundstage is not very wide in comparison to the tube amps I've heard. Definitely on the intimate side in comparison to them.
- Maybe a little congested in the layering compared again to the better tube amps I had.

Woo Audio WA2:
+ Spacious soundstage.
+ Excellent dynamics, imaging & holographic sound.
+ Adds a lot of bass!
+ Adds body to the music.
+/- Adds noticeable warmth to the sound signature.
- Stock tubes are lousy.

Violetric V200:
+ Smooth, neutral & unoffensive.
+ Add body to the bass & mid-range
+ Multiple gain options for low & high sensitivity headphones.
- Small soundstage.
- Not a lot of bass extension.
- Doesn't offer any dynamics or layering
- Lacking in dynamic, detail & resolution.

Matrix M-Stage:
+ Excellent budget amp.
+ Decent resolution.
+ Decent bass & treble extension .
- Slightly harsh sounding.
- A bit thin in the midrange.

iFi Micro iDSD:
+ Smooth.
+ Punchy.
~ More towards analytical/harsh.
- A bit congested sounding.

Headroom Desktop Amplifier:
~ Neutral.
~ Slightly bright.
+ Good pair with bass heavy headphones.
~ More towards cold & analytical.
- Doesn't pair with bright or analytical headphones.

Bottlehead Crack (stock):
~ Very Warm.
+ Spacious, wide & open sound.
- Lack of body to the music.
- Doesn't pair well with bass or low impedance heavy headphones.
~ Stock tubes not very good & do the least with the amp.

Schiit Asgard 2:
+ Drives harder to drive headphones easily.
~ Slightly warm, but still can be considered bright.
- Slightly congested sound for higher end headphones.
Source Inventory
Denafrips Terminator
PS Audio Directstream
Schiit Yggdrasil v1
Sonic Frontiers SFD2 MkII SE+
Sonic Frontiers SFD 1 MkII
Schiit Gungnir Multibit
PS Audio Reference Link LS
Parasound D/AC 1500
iFi Micro iDSD
Music Preferences
Mostly everything.
Broke Gadabout.