Gold Planar GL1200

General Information

UPDATED 5/18/21​

Gold Planar GL1200

GL1200 UPDATED 5/14/21 Full Frequency True Ribbon Driver Headphone​

Gold & Silver Ribbons Tested​

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  • NOTE: This headphone needs professional audio amplifier to power. We suggest to play with 4ohms load, single track/100Watt.The sound quality is soft and clear, the bass is deepHigh frequency is flexible and excellent. Transient state is outstanding than most headphones. High resolution, broad sound stage. Amp liaison/interface is included as shown in this picture. Also included is speaker wire cables to connect to your own supplied amp with banana plugs.

True Ribbons for A Reason​

The GL1200 is the first True Ribbon headphone from Gold Planar. Highly specialized ribbon drivers are made from aluminium and were developed to reproduce 15Hz to 40kHz bandwidth in order to eliminate the need for sealed chambered bass. In this case, this design allows for open-air baffles (both front and back) for a true full-frequency soundfield.

PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS​

Price: $1,399.00 USD

Model: GL1200

Style: Open back

Soundtrack System Full: frequency aluminium ribbon driver

Frequency Range: 15-40000Hz

Impedance: 0.1ohm

Magnet Type: N52 Neodymium

Driver Dimension: 100*36mm

Sensitivity: 90dB, 1mW

Distortion: <0.1% THD

Product Weight: 520g

Connection 3.5mm plug

Cable Length: 2 meters

Cable Material: 6N OCC silver-plated cable

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Latest reviews

John Massaria

500+ Head-Fier
UPDATED 5/18/21 Gold Planar GL1200 Full Frequency True Ribbon Headphone -TWO RIBBON SETS TESTED
Pros: Very comfortable and light, TWO SETS OF RIBBONS TESTED- THE 'silver' and the 'gold'. Amazing sound stage, after break in- amazing image, amazing bass of any ribbon or electrostatic, amazing placement details and 3-D space. Like no other headphone I ever heard... Seriously like describing nothing else you have ever heard from headphones- Out of the box cold- they should not be judged until at least 20 hours of play time. These could test the limits of your hearing and all of your gear, music and recordings. These could test your living arrangements with others. You have to be slightly insane to own these... these DO make crazy worth it in every way... just know what you are in store for here... the rewards DO pay off as being the best sounding headphone at this time of me typing, creating space and dimension and involvement like no other. Another pro is the fact that the Ribbons are removable through a hatch door and can be swapped out for different sound signatures or repairs! (All this and more AFTER break in of 75hrs - the ribbons need to loosen up and yes it takes that long.) Two sets of ear pads are included- alcantara/velour and the other one is perforated p-leather. The amplifier junction box is constructed out of very thick aluminum case. This includes a set of 5ft speaker wire with very high quality "Made in the USA CMC Gold Plated Speaker Cable Wire Banana Plug Connector with 100% OFC Copper wire." Comes with 2 meter 6N OCC silver-plated cable (3.5mm left/right to 4 pin male XLR). Excellent Pelican style Cary case is icing on the cake here- all manufactures should include this kind of case since it not only protects the headphones during shipment but after can be used to store the headphones or cold cash when you sell your Stax or RAAL headphones. Not the last word in detail or microscope clinical sound like a Abyss Phi or Lcd4- these are more fun. These are song dependent and will be a love hate relationship with some material. You can now change ribbons out for one of two designs- silver or gold. Silver= brighter more detailed sound with tighter bass. The gold ribbon is more dynamic, fuller in lows to mid bass and slightly more even highs than the silver- my #1 choice is gold ribbon.
Cons: not ez to set up, not designed at all for portable use, tremendous sound leakage so bad that you may as well listen to speakers, size of headphone, look of headphones while on - these are ridiculous looking 100%, the construction on top where ribbon can be removed looks like someone cracked the plastic instead of a flush door without seems, ribbons are delicate and can break if you drop them or put too much power to the driver (no worse than a dynamic or planar headphones I would think), can sound a bit harsh if you make volume too loud BUT ah dah! just don't do that... like any headphone. Needs a separate amp (I am testing 3 different kinds right now) - all of these things mean zero when you consider the sound could make it all worth while... These are song dependent and will be a love hate relationship with some material- for the silver ribbon. The gold ribbon is more forgiving and universal.
GOLD PLANAR GL1200
Ribbon Headphone Review by John Massaria

THE 'silver' and the 'gold' Ribbons Both Tested

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"Nothing comes close...to being this crazy good"
I was not paid for this or any review I ever wrote-
I do all my reviews with passion and love for this great hobby... I do it for the love of music...





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"WHEN CRAZY MAKES SENSE"

TIME BREAKDOWN FROM DAY ONE ON...

FIRST DAY: 4/20/21- I just updated this review- as they break in for what has to be a mandatory period of nearly 100+hrs for ribbons to loosen up and sound like music I would enjoy... I have to question why I bought these (Z reviews may really owe users full disclosure here) - many new owners need to know all the quirks of these very strange headphones and I will explore them here in this review)
Right now I am trying to break them in without annoying my my wife and kids who also live here and are no where near these headphones - we have a nice sized home but they kept complaining how loud they were while trying to break them in. First I put pillows in between the drivers and on either side and covered them in multiple layers of blankets- and they still leaked through!... Then I tried using the plastic case they came in with several blankets over the nearly closed case and I can still hear the music screaming inside the black box, like I buried some poor musician inside a Pelican replica case... I can not understand this kind of headphone if it's not close to being a semi-private intimate listening experience... I may as well use my near-filed monitors I am thinking- there is so much sound escaping I am perplexed as to a remedy during break in period- maybe if I lock myself in a padded room when they come and get me. Just me and these headphones inside a padded room... yea. That may work... How is this practical unless you live alone... and then there is the sound signature- they need to be broken in... an absolute must as I remember with all ribbons when they are new- my Magnepans needed at least 150 hours to sound like they did in showroom and my friends Perfect 8 The Force use a ribbon tweeter which sounded harsh when they were installed for at least 100+ hrs... they all need break in for the ribbons.
First impression: A absolutely ridiculous and crazy purchase with a potential to turn the headphone industry on it's head... if break in does what it did for my Magnepans and for my buddies Perfect Eight.

DAY TWO AM 4/21: AT 18hrs break in- yup too much sound leakage is a con in my review. I own open backs, the HD600, Kennerton Thekks and Kennerton Wodans, the Gold Planar GL2000, maybe my SR-Lambda Stax's leak three quarters as much... none of them sound as loud as a speaker like these do... I should repeat... "nothing even comes close to how insane these headphones are" when it comes to sound leaking in the room... yes I consider headphones somewhat of an intimate instrument for personal use - some leakage is acceptable of course... as I break these in more and more I will say maybe the sound benefits could make all the negatives of this crazy headphone a worth while purchase- BUT as a reviewer I feel the need to keep it all in balance- pros and cons... and so far the break in period nearing 18 hours they are already making me feel like I need to update the review further- they sound unbelievably good... and may just make crazy make sense...

DAY TWO PM: 4/21/21 - Like any headphone review- some sound nice right out of the box and some do not... these fall in to the... umm no they do not sound good at all out of the box- they make burn in a mandatory practice and anyone looking for right out of the box pleasure look else where- you will be disappointed and maybe like I was nearly angry at how bad they sounded out of the box.. Out of box these get a 3 star rating. At 20hrs they moved up to 3.5-4 stars... So I reserve my star rating to change as I near the 100+ hours needed for typical ribbons to stretch and become musical... but know this review will be an explorative explanation of time - from the moment I unboxed them and first plugged them in... always updating what I see, feel and more importantly what I hear as they continue to break in -just stay with me...

DAY THREE 4/22/21- The continuous break in over the last 3 days has paid off and the once harsh sound is now nothing short of amazing. Bass, mid range and tremble all blend with a speed I have never heard before in any planar electrostatic or dynamic driver- a perfect blend of timing and acoustic bliss.
Are they worth the money, time to break in, the excessive amount of sound leakage? Yes the money part seems fair for what you get here. These are not precision made like the HEDD German headphones or like the RAALs- the construction is better than the STAX SR-Lambda for example, but not a robust build made with exacting construction- The door which gives users access to change the ribbons for different tuning or repairs is poorly designed and looks like you cracked the area on top where the door is visible. The space of the door and the headphone itself is large and feels cheap once removed. The silver plastic/metal like feel of the headphone is light but you know they are not metal- rather a plastic coated in silver paint. They do make the headphones light and comfortable however- some may like to use more padding such as Dekoni Nuggets at the top part of the headphone band which touches the cranium frontal and parietal area. Right now I am using the perforated leather like pads and they could be 'hot' if worn for a long while, unlike other genuine leather from Kennerton or Spirit headphones. I can say the soft velour may change the sound and I will report on that latter. The pads come off with Velcro so changing them should be ez. For now I am just sitting back and enjoying what I am hearing like nothing else I have ever put on my head. They do not need a ton of volume to hear the clarity and near perfect sound... bass and the entire midrange and tremble blend well at low-medium to medium and even loud volumes. There is a sweet spot for volume which is mid though I wills say for ideal listening over long periods... These will play loud but like any headphone go too far with them and they will let you know.. If you turn the volume up to much they will strain the ribbon - but at that volume level you would go deaf and probably blind at the same time anyway so just don't do that... They are truly like my Magnepan 3.6r fully broken in... I am using my Adcom Mosfet Amp which drives a 4 ohm load to 125watts cleanly. My Ray Samules Apache is acting as a preamp and my DAC is the Topping D90 with the Mojo Mystique R2R EVO Pro else where in my home. I can not wait to hear how these sound with the Mystique. All I can say is this is one crazy headphone that does make it all worth the trouble price and time it takes to break in, the leakage will varry among households... I know my use on these will be much less than say my closed back Kennerton GH50JM Edition which for me is my #1 go to for private listening sessions... but GL1200 may just be a top pick for the rest of the time...



SUB BASS PLENTY HERE WITH GL1200
You may not be able to split your ear drums with large amounts of volume
but these do go very low and are 100% on the money for satisfaction and creating 3d space



4/26/21 - After some 75 hours of break in - these are truly a 5 star reference anyone with the knowledge base of it's limitations and quirkiness allow- I can say my copy of the GL1200 is far superior to any headphone I have ever heard to date in every aspect except perhaps very complex bass passages such as those on the Blade Runner 2049 track #23 Blade Runner or the grueling torture track#20 called Sea Wall but I am fine with that limitation (I just have to turn the volume down and it's fine) as most music is not that demanding and for those tracks I fall back on my GH50JM Edition if I need it to be louder or more impact- the GL1200 sound is utterly addicting and over the top for everything else- after some 75hrs of break in- they have finally transformed into something I treasure - the out of head experience is like that of my Magnepan 3.6r speakers while my closed back Gjallarhorn GH50JM Edition is like my Vandersteen 3a speakers- both I truly adore for what they do right - the leakage into the room through the GL1200 is something I need to live with or should I say my family needs to be absent for me to truly enjoy - I can not imagine it getting any better than this visceral utopian experience. Comparing the GL2000 to the GL1200 - where by the GL2000 is very wide sound stage and image among the largest I ever heard for a planar design the reduction in sound-stage is apparent when switching over to the GL1200. It's akin to listening to my Magnepans 3.6r's or as close as one can expect while wearing headphones. Insane detail that immerses you in the full mastering of the recording- without any hint of listening fatigue. I will say do not attempt to use these headphones at all with a sterile amp such as some Class D's or very linear amps like a Rotel 1050 which would be a terrible match. I would stick with Class A or Mosfet as I have done here. I have not tried a tube amp but I would expect it to do fine so long as impedance matches the headphone- forget an OTL if you need to use tubes try Push-Pull, SET or Ultralinear. Using the Adcom Mosfet I am all but 100% satisfied- the GL1200 is always composed. The amp needs dynamic range power reserves- but at that point the amp will not be the fault when trying to reproduce very complex bass passages at loud volumes- the GL1200 nature of being a ribbon will be tested most here... bass is tight 99% of the time except when the bass track is overly complex like those "artificial"recordings of Hans Zimmer in Blade Runner 2049- don't get me wrong many tracks from the soundtrack sound sublime - and don't think hard hitting bass is not done well- it's just that you may need to turn down the volume to enjoy it like a dynamic driver... As I explore more with this I will add more in next update... but I can say this is truly an insane piece of equipment that does so many things so well the faults and quirks make it all worth while... an absolute addicting sound like nothing else I ever heard in a headphone.


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BEYOND MY FAVORITE ON THE GL1200 - too good to be true
the closest I can come to listening to my Magnepans for nearly one fifth the price



I didn't think Worms or Ain't Nice would play nice with the GL1200 but they did
they are complex compilations with high energy and high BPMs - just remember to truly enjoy these complex passages with the GL1200 volume adjustment is key




SUB BASS AT PROPER VOLUME LEVELS IS EXTREMELY WELL CONTROLLED HERE WITH THIS INSANE SUB SONIC SUB BASS TRACK WITH THE GL1200 you can feel it and it's very satisfying in a way I can not describe except as "finally real bass" not club bass. The Gold Ribbon sounds fuller and rounder with less parkle but more even handed and fun. The Silver ribbon is a bit more tight yet unable to go down as deep yet has more sparkle in the higher registers.

This is a very difficult track for ribbons and I have to say it's confusing- Jacks voice sounds great but the pounding drum with electric guitar make for a difficult job for the GL1200 so while done very well here- I would say I would switch to my GH50JM Edition for this track...
The gold ribbon tackles this track much better than the silver ribbon.


Well done with the GL1200 but still my GH50's do it better for sub bass/bass
it's not to say the GL1200 silver ribbon don't perform well- they do but to reach deep down and keep up dynamic drivers
do it better... however the gold ribbon makes this track sound awesome. There are extremes such as the Spirit Torrino which are over the top exaggerated bass but the GH50 again brings it home for me more with track like this... which if anyone knows me is always my go to HP


I use the high res flac but this YT video will give you an idea of the mastering here- guitar rift with Chris's deep voice will challenge any ssytem for accuracy and distortion if there is any faults with your DAC/AMP/PREAMP and Speakers/HEADPHONES-
If You turn it down and you will be fine with the GL1200- the track is very well done here...
but go too loud and Chris's Voice will let you know. The gold ribbon tackles this track much better than the silver ribbon.
A torture test for most Planar and Dynamics alike... the Spirit Torino failed here with too much over done bass while the GL1200 plays nice at low volumes and my GH50's top off this track with my favorite playback...


You can just stop here- the GL1200 does tracks like this better than anything else period- you may weep with silver ribbon.

Forget getting any kind of volume with tracks like this from a ribbon like the GL1200
except when using the gold- The gold ribbon tackles this track much better than the silver ribbon.

Bass Plucks are so well done here with the GL1200- tempo pace and vocals are as good as headphones can go with silver ribbon.

Again same thing the GL1200 will be fine BUT again mind your volume
except when using the gold- The gold ribbon tackles this track much better than the silver ribbon.

Not the best track for the GL1200 silver but the gold does it better for sure. awesome.

What the GL1200 does better than anything silver...
the gold just sounds juicy and meaty and well evened fun.

You either buy the GL1200 w/silver ribbon installed for tracks like this or you just will never experience it so well.

IN HIGH RES YOU WILL LOOSE YOUR SH!T when played back with the GL1200 silver ribbon.
The gold ribbon tackles this track much better than the silver ribbon.


Sub Bass here is done so well I have no issue with recommending these at all for EDM Lovers
The gold ribbon tackles this track much better than the silver ribbon.



Review continues:
The included Pelican type hard case which is very well made and certainly practical to use after the unboxing for keeping your headphones safe and well protected or can be used for stacks of money you will save when you sell all your Stax or RAAL headphones....
THE UNBOXING OF THE BOXES
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(left the outer box) (center: inner box) (right the case inside the box) CLICK TO ENLARGE
3d space video test

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Two different types of ear pads are included. One is a sort of alcantara/velour and the other one is perforated leather.
The 2 meter non-microphonic high quality soft fabric insulated headphone wire is constructed from 8 strand 6N OCC silver-plated wire. Connectors for each ear cup are 3.5mm left/right (marked red-thank you Gold Planar) and a 4pin XLR wire which connects to the amplifier junction box. CLICK IMAGES TO ENLARGE
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AN EXTREMELY WELL DONE ALBUM/MASTERED VERY WELL- THE SOUND IS VERY IMPACTFUL including the bass- this is a very addicting sound with the GL1200 - the sub bass is magnificent here- so do not read into the GL1200 can't do sub bass they can and do very well- its just a handful of crazy hyperactive high BPM tracks I mentioned like the ones from from Blade Runner 2049 that need to be played lower than a dynamic... Arpeggi or On or Melt! by Kelly Lee Owens are perfect examples how sub bass play perfectly with the GL1200 - unlike anything else I ever heard... very addicting. These are gentile giants and will never ever beat your heard up with bass pounding sound like the Spirit Torino Radiante Ragnarr I reviewed before.
The GL1200 is how bass should sound for me... balanced...


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The amplifier junction box is constructed out of very thick aluminum case.
This includes a set of 5ft speaker wire with very high quality
"Made in the USA CMC Gold Plated Speaker Cable Wire Banana Plug Connector with 100% OFC Copper wire."
CLICK TO ENLARGE


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SUB BASS: 8.0/10 (silver ribbon) 9.5/10 (gold)
(AS TESTED WITH THE GRUELING BLADE RUNNER 2049 SOUNDTRACK/PURE WATER MIGOS)
BASS: 8.5/10 (silver ribbon) 9.5/10 (gold)
(AS TESTED WITH THE GRUELING BLADE RUNNER 2049 SOUNDTRACK)
MIDS: 9/10 (gold/silver)
HIGH FREQ: 10/10 (silver) 9.5/10 (gold)
SOUND STAGE: 10/10 (silver) 9.5/10 (gold)
IMAGE: 10/10 (silver) 9/10(gold)
BUILD: 8.5/10
SUPPLIED CORD: 9/10
ACCESSORIES: 9/10 (CASE AND EAR PADS ARE TOP NEAR NOTCH. FAKE LEATHER CAN GET HOT)
CLINICAL EVALUATION OF MUSIC: 10/10
PLEASURABLE SOUND OF MUSIC: 10/10
COMFORT: 8/10 (suggest
Dekoni Nuggets for long listening)
+10 FOR SPEAKER JUNCTION BOX - BUILT LIKE A TANK
+10 FOR INCLUDED 100% OFC COPPER SPEAKER WIRE WITH HQ BANANA PLUGS
+10 FOR 3-D NATURAL SOUND LIKE NOTHING ELSE OFFERED FOR SALE AT THIS TIME OF PUBLISHING
-10 FOR EXCESSIVE SOUND LEAKAGE
-10 FOR LONG TIME BREAK IN TIME AND TERRIBLE SOUND WHEN NEW OUT OF BOX
+50? FOR IMAGE AND TRUE RECORDING RENDERING LIKE NOTHING ELSE ON PLANET INCLUDING STAX
SUITABLE FOR: INDUSTRIAL, ROCK, EDM, BLUES, JAZZ AND CLASSICAL -
(Note: has some trouble playing really loud if the track is filled with too many complex fast BPM subass and bass notes from 20 to 60 Hz - you may need less volume than a dynamic driver to enjoy it more)

PORTABLE USE: NOT POSSIBLE FOR PORTABLE USE B/C OF SOUND LEAKAGE/AMP REQUIREMENTS AT THIS TIME

AMP/DAC DEPENDENT: YES- YOU WILL HEAR WHAT YOU PLUG IN- NO HIDING HERE WITH THIS RESOLVING HP

OTHER NOTES: USE ALL COPPER WIRE, THE SILVER COATED STOCK CABLE MAY BE TOO MUCH FOR SUCH A RESOLVING HEADPHONE
THE VELOUR PADS ARE MUCH BETTER COMFORT. THE ALL PLEATHER EAR PADS WHICH COME INSTALLED SOUND A HIT MORE WITH TINY BIT MORE BASS AND HIT MORE WITH HINT OF MORE ENERGY IN HIGH FREQUENCY WHILE SMOOTHING OUT THE MID HUMP. I WOULD LIKE TO TUNE THE PADS MORE... WE WILL SEE... I WOULD LIKE TO SEE A PAD WITH VELOUR THAT TOUCHES YOUR SKIN AND PERFORATED LEATHER COMBO LIKE THE DEKONI HYBRID ELITE
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FINAL NOTES: THESE MAY TURN THE HEADPHONE INDUSTRY ON IT'S HEAD AND BRING ALL HIGH END MANUFACTURERS BACK TO THE DRAWING BOARD... THEY ARE WORTHY OF ALL THE AGGRAVATION


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THE HEADPHONES CAN LAY FLAT



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4/27/21UPDATES ADDRESSING OTHER REVIEWS:
Measurements from The HEADPHONE Show youtube channel screen shot. CLICK TO ENLARGE
I will say that I never measure my satisfaction of headphones with graphs or consider myself to hang out with graph "people." "Measurements" for STAX should be an epic fail but they have their cult following for more than 40 years because they do things no dynamic can do and that's timing, image, sound-stage presence and sense of real space. The GL1200 for me do more right than the STAX and most other headphones. Are they perfect? No but they truly are unlike anything else I have ever heard- the stage images and localization is simply unmatched.

Can you EQ them yes- my question why would you want to- they sound fine and don't really require EQ... with that said you can EQ them to even them out in mid and higher frequency to your taste but not so much in bass region and frankly the bass doesn't really need any eq'ing at all, something Andrew and I both can agree on. But according to Andrew- the GL1200 aren’t the most detailed headphones but I 99% disagree - they are detailed enough for pleasurable listening and reveal just about everything one needs to have for pure enjoyment after a good break in period of at least 75 hours... And Andrew said he has a hard time recommending the GL1200 unless you have a speaker amp already- and certainly thinks these would be better choices if you didn't: LCDX (no way), LCD2 (not even), Sennheiser HD800s (which I personally have a strong disgust for due to their artificial stage and strange upper mid and high frequencies that boarder on harsh and shrill) or the FOCAL CLEAR (are you serious? this is a nearly a detail monster but not an all day driver for pleasure)- these recommendations by The Headphone Show should tell you everything Andrew looks for in a headphone and how different peoples tastes differ. For me its all about the music and loosing yourself the emotion of bliss and euphoric sound that makes you want to listen all day... where times stops as you melt in the musical magic- goose bumps and smiles on passages for god sake man! EMOTION! the clears never are emotional headphones they are sterile... And about the frequency graphs... they are and never will mean anything to me other than a guide- if frequency response matters all that much and that were the case we would all own JBL LSR305
desk top monitors or B&W speakers which I LOATH! B&W put frequency response over time and phase coherence and for me I can not stand that kind engineering. The graphs never tell you about image and timing, space and image- two thing the ribbons on the GL1200 do better than anything. Go listen to Magnepans and you will see why they are loved and never forgotten once you hear them. If they are set up properly the Magnepans will go down deep enough in the bass without the need for a sub yet send you to the place no dynamic driver speaker will ever- the sense of liveliness and space and timing unlike any other. The exception would be a ribbon/driver combo like the Perfect Eight The Force which one of my friends owns. I also don’t really look for or like detail monsters like the Focal Utopia for everyday listening unless I am into S&M on most recordings....Be like water my friend flow... balance is a virtue in any system. Detail/frequency is only ONE part of the multiple 3d space equation that is music. Give me the GL1200 which detail plenty... any more detail would bring them over the brink and would be too much- they wouldn’t be an all day driver without listener fatigue - the way they are now is nearly ideal... can you tweak them more to get more out of them - I think the next big thing for these headphones may be tweaker pad mods- we will see... but like I said for all the quirkiness of these headphones - they do more right than wrong... they set the bar for immersing you in the mix unlike any other headphone...


A Knock out performance that no headphone I ever heard can do so well - a great recording with the best mics and mastering
AEA Mics and Preamps used here and no other mastering comes close to this perfection and the presentation by GL1200 does it better than anything else- every other headphone sounds like a headphone - the GL1200 sounds like being at the venue more than anything else- not at the recording studio at the console BUT rather to be clear- as if you are in front of the guy playing the drums live - the hits are so dam tight and the cymbals sound so realistic again like NO OTHER HEADPHONE I EVER HEARD.

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Lastly: I should mention-The one that ships with the Linsoul version is a silver type ribbon at this time. I am reaching out to find out more details on what else is available.. - They are removable and that makes them interchangeable in case one gets damaged BUT you will need to break them in as pairs so keep this in mind. The gold and silver ribbons are tuned slightly different- I will report on those as I read more and learn more-the gold one may be more bassy at the expense of detail. The silver is reportably the better one which comes standard. The gold is fuller and warmer and he better of the two for me- the silver is very revealing but not as dynamic and fulfilling for sinking into the music and loosing yourself. The silver is more expressive and expansive into the recording. Its a good life to have both to choose from. Both are unlike any headphone I ever heard I can not pull myself away from listening. I think I prefer the gold for most songs but the silver has it's place...
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The gold or silver ribbon- if you want nice sparkle and nice tight lighter bass the tighter stretched thinner aluminum material 'silver' ribbon may be for you however if you like more warmth and body and over all roundness with deep punchy pleasurable but never over done bass -try the 'gold' ribbon installed. I am truly amazed at what this headphone can do... the sky is the limit... becareful not to touch the ribbon or blow on ribbon- you may just ruin it when you take it out to change. Luckily if ribbon does get ruined you can get more from Linsoul or your distributor and change them easily. Uncertain of replacment ribbon costs but you wil need a set of two at a time since they need to break in together. My suggestion is get a pair as a spare for the future.



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My test gear is Mojo Audio Mystique EVO Pro R2R DAC, Topping D90, Sony CD Transport, TrippLite Medical Grade IS1000HG Isolation Transformer for my PC. Ray Samuels Apache as a preamp for the amps, B&K Mosfet Amp, Adcom Mosfet Amp.
I may be getting a VTV Class D Amplifier if the manufacture wants to send one for this and their own review... and I may be getting a test review amp from Schiit Audio called the Vidar, maybe even a Jotunheim R which is designed for ribbon headphones like the Raal and the GL1200... we will see what this Shciit does for the GL1200...
I am set with teh B&K and Adcom - I think Schiit knew they were better amps than the Jot R but not as convenient - I still would test the Vidar since it's smaller- but Schiit never followed up... so instead I am... and as for Class D the GL1200 are way too good for such nonsense amps since most sound artificial/cold in the affordable range.




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review by JM
(bought @ full price)​
SIDE NOTE: So you know, I have 3 systems at my home- my speakers are Vandersteen 3a Signatures, Magnepan 3.6r and my desk top system which uses SEAS drivers in custom D'Appolito configuration.
I edit videos and film on location for professionals- I mix sound for a living occasionally after I film them in person- sometimes I am handed tracks that are terrible masters but am asked to make videos from them without re-mastering the sound.
My IMDB page is https://www.imdb.com/name/nm8127846/ I also do IT support for Hospitals all around the NY Area.
I am not a flake or hard of hearing at all-I get sound tested by my doctor each year or two. I grew up with sound engineers in the studio who were mixing albums at The Mix Palace and Platinum Sound Recording and The Power Station, Electric Lady Studios Studios in NY to name a few. When I like something I will review it such as the Kennerton headphones I reviewed on head-fi before. If I take the time to review something it has to be meaningful- it must have moved me and compelled me to do so- I do not get paid for any reviews. I do this because I care to set the record straight on what I hear and how I felt about a particular piece of equipment.
Headphone user, music lover and professional video and audio producer
I wasn't paid by anyone to write this - so honesty for me is the best policy!
https://www.imdb.com/name/nm8127846/

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Lokiiami
Lokiiami
Hi MAURO16164 can you share the contact to this cable builder ? Thank you.
John Massaria
John Massaria
If changing ribbons out be careful not to push on edges or to touch aluminum at all
Do not force ribbons in place - just a reminder and I would ask everyone ask Linsoul or other distributors for pricing for replacing gold or silver ribbons by manufacture ASAP
MAURO16164
MAURO16164
Hi Lokiiami, As I wrote earlier this cable builder is a very good Italian craftsman but he does not have a shop or a business on ebay.He builds cables only for friends but they are the best I have ever heard, even better than the Moon Audio.I can leave you his telephone contact in private and you can contact him on wathsapp

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John Massaria

500+ Head-Fier
Does anyone knows of this is a real dealer?
2👈,IaS4czdNHXW嘻 https://m.tb.cn/h.4lNY9Ch?sm=41529c 金平面GOLDPLANAR头戴式全频气动式平板耳机 高保真HiFi旗舰GL850
That’s the link for Chinese buyers. Unless you can communicate in Chinese or have someone who can to help you, you may just buy from Linsoul if you’re interested. And apparently, they get to choose between a “overall balanced” version and a “bass boosted” version. NOT COOL I WANT BOTH FOR SAME $$$$
 

bluesaint

500+ Head-Fier
btw a friend got his from Linsoul and it comes with the silver one (the better one imo). So I'm guessing they are defaulting to that now for US/International.
 

John Massaria

500+ Head-Fier
These look very interesting especially for the price but I hope other sellers pick them up because linsoul is one of the worst companies I've ever dealt with
I 100% agree they do not have any English speaking people working at customer service-I asked about the ribbons several times in emails and they do not answer the question at all- they are polite robotic responses finally I got word they only send one set of ribbons out with their version.
 

Lokiiami

100+ Head-Fier
I have the GL850 and really curious how the GL1200 sound in comparison. If anyone is located in Singapore that own the GL1200 and if you are keen to listen to the GL850 please let me know.
 

John Massaria

500+ Head-Fier
I have the GL850 and really curious how the GL1200 sound in comparison. If anyone is located in Singapore that own the GL1200 and if you are keen to listen to the GL850 please let me know.
I can tell you Zreviews did a comparison on his youtube channel he liked the GL2000 better than the GL850
 

Lokiiami

100+ Head-Fier
I can tell you Zreviews did a comparison on his youtube channel he liked the GL2000 better than the GL850
GL850 is the best headphones I've heard so far. Requires about 200hrs burnt in. I believe Z reviews didn't burn in the set enough, it sounded veiled out of the box but problem is gone after more than 200hrs burn in. That's the reason why now I'm so curious about GL1200. Hope to hear more reviews on the GL1200.
 

buffer

100+ Head-Fier
Hi,
Thought I would give some initial impressions of the GL1200. I ordered mine from Linsoul and it was shipped from China and took a couple of weeks to receive. I paid retail, and requested a price match but they would not. Unfortunate, given they are cheaper on Drop but sometimes you win and sometime you lose. This will not color my impression of the headphone. The headphone came with 2 sets of pads.I quickly switched to the velour pads before doing serious listening or comparisons so all comments will be based upon use of the velour pads. Switching the pads was easy as they are attached with velcro. Not sure I like that method for long-term durability but I had no problems changing the pads.

I have many amplifiers but wanted something small and light. I purchased a 100 watt BA20 Fosi Amp with tone controls. It shounded quite good but I had the treble control and the bass control up. The treble control was boosted significantly more than the bass control to get what I felt was neutral sound. The GL1200 sounded promising. I knew, however, that the little amplifier was completely inadequate. It simply lacked sufficient current and seemed to clip a little, even at lower volumes - especially when midbass was required. I was interested to see whether I would like the GL1200 without tone controls when properly amped. My Pass X150 was missing the fuse cap and fuse so shout out to PASS Labs, a wonderful company with wonderful support - they willingly sent me what I needed without any trouble,

Equipment
So here is the equipment I am using. Pass Laxs X150 amplifier, Adcom GFP-750 preamplifier, and of course the speaker adapter box that comes with headphones. I use the iFi Bluetooth DAC to receive music from Youtube, Tidal, etc.

So how does the GL1200 sound?
I had seen the Zeos review and also the review from @Resolve so I didnt know what to expect. @Resolve pretty much said the sound was warm, muffled, in need of EQ and not that impressive. Zeos said they were amazing and rivaled the newer Orpheus. So which would be the case? I don't have an Orpheus so I cannot say but here is what I did here.

These headphones sound great. Comparible to my Final Audio D8000/Pro, the Susvara, and the Abyss. They reveal things in music that did not catch my attention with other headphones. They seem to have a wide soundstage. They are well balanced, though I must admit to not looking to see how low in bass they go. If anything, i might say they have slightly elevated midbass, but if so, only mildly. I felt the headphone had an appropriate amount of punch and did so in a natural way. I do not feel like the midbass creeps into the midrange at all. I also like that the lower midrange doesn't seem boosted in any way. Lower midrange is not lacking, but I notice many 'audiophile' headphones artifically boost lower midrange. These do not. Upper midrange may sound slightly relaxed on some music, but that could be a function of the Pass X150 or the songs I have heard thus far. I like neutral to bright sound and I do not feel the upper mids to be lacking or warm. I think the upper mids are fairly neutral, just not exagerated like some other headphones. The overall sound is natural and coherent and very pleasing to me. Clarity is also very good, and while I do sometimes here things hidden from other headphones, I would say clarity may not be quite as good as some other flagships such as Susvara, Final Audio, or Abyss, but extremely close to them. The GL1200 may also fall slightly behind a little in terms of dynamics, but they do have really good dynamics and I don't feel any significant sense of compression on well recorded music. Vocals are neither forward or recessed, just present. They don't strike me as a stellar attribute of the headphone, but again, they are natural and match many other flagships. In other words, I don't find them lacking in any way. Also, I would note that I do not have that many hours on these headphones, so they might change or ...well you know about brain burn-in too.

Ergonomics and some other thoughts
The headphones are big, but comfortable and feel relatively light. Claming force is fine - not overy loose but not overly tight. They generally do not creek or squeak, but I wouldn't put build quality with the very best. And if I do move my head suddenly I can on occassion here a creek, but not bothersome in the least. I do really like the cable provided as it is light and flexible. I hear no microphonics andit appears to be a cable I could use with other headphones too. I also very much appreciate the nice case that comes with the headphones.

Conclusion
These headphones are holding up to the bery best and I am impressed with their performance, regardless of, but especially in light of their price - although it is less of a bargain if you have to go out and buy equioment to properly amp the headphones. Also, I am using the setup as I type these impressions to run my Susvara. The interface box provided with the GL1200 works nicely to allow me to use the X150 to power the Susvara and that's a feature I appreciate. Keep in mind the speaker box only allows for a balcned headphone connection.

So my impressions of the GL1200 are very positive. I didn't form a solid imprression on timbre or imaging yet, but I would say these headphones sound natural and relatively transparent. The fact that these compete against the best is surprising to me, but is there a down side? Absolutely. While I like the GL1200 as much and maybe even slighty more in some respects than some of the aforementioned flagships, the GL1200 requires a massive system and those flagships provide equal or slightly better sound quality from conventional headphobe amplifiers. Even the Susvara, for example, can run with my GS-X Mk2 or Woo WA5LE, or my THX AAA789 amplifier. I could pretty much transport any of these headphones to a friend's house for their listening pleasure. This is not really possible with the GL1200.
 

John Massaria

500+ Head-Fier
You need to try the other ribbons now- the gold ones for deeper bass and fuller sound- to compare.... I prefer the gold now over the silver BUT it is song dependent for sure... this is probably the best kept secret in headphones available today since few people get the depth and versatility these headphones have with the two tuning ribbons to chose from
 
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