A bit of advice on moving forward
Oct 8, 2009 at 7:11 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 20

928GTS

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So I've been into the whole hobby quite some time and you can see my gear in my signature below. I've been wondering where I should go next? I know this is might be a silly or a very general question but I'd like a bit of advice. I'm currently thinking of investing in a pair of HD595's.

Getting the Blue Jeans cable IC helped open things up a bit but I rather doubt spending another $80 or so odd on a "better" cable would really reward me with much. I'm planning on getting some more 6SJ7GT's for my 6P13S amp and some more 6GV8's for my Figaro to see if I can find any more "magic combinations" with that. I'm just not sure where I should go next. Should I work towards saving towards a new amp? A new IC? HD595 not good enough?

I'm really quite thrilled with the sound I'm getting now but I'm wondering if some extra investment will reward one of those "holy crap!" moments where the SQ level is dramatically increased.

Again I certainly hope this isn't ridiculously general or posted in the wrong place but I'd quite enjoy some opinions on this matter.

PS: I'm currently using a Creative Zen Vision M through line out for my source however does anyone have an idea for what would be a good MP3 player that does FLAC AND has a Line Out?
 
Oct 9, 2009 at 3:56 AM Post #2 of 20

priest

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I'm sorry if this is a really stupid question, and you've been at this way longer than I have, but you seem to have very involved set-ups and cables, but your only headphones are the MDR-V6?? Are you really thinking about anything other than upgrading your headphones?
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Why don't you skip the HD 595 and go straight to the HD 650, AKG K 702 or the beyerdynamic DT 880?
 
Oct 9, 2009 at 4:19 AM Post #3 of 20

928GTS

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If only I could afford the 650's. In fact my friend has a pair and she let me listen to them. I have them on right now and they're really delightful. They remind me a lot of my V6's except they're a bit more controlled and seem to keep everything weighted a bit more evenly. It's weird though when I switch back to my V6's I'm always quite surprised at how good they sound. They do a really good job of making a good sound stage and keeping everything well spaced. The 650's are a bit more chilled out than the V6 though,especially when it comes to the upper range of the treble.

Perhaps I'm crazy for liking the V6's? I tried someone's Grado 325's and I found the sound stage to be sort of disorienting and the emphasis of various frequencies to be a bit off putting. I like a neutral response to allow the amp to work it's magic and to bring out the changes in tube rolling as I do love my tubes.
 
Oct 9, 2009 at 4:28 AM Post #4 of 20

Uncle Erik

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Go with a better headphone. Nothing against the MDR-V6 (I loved them when I had them) but picking up a HD-650 changed everything. The MDR-V6 was idled and I eventually gave them away.

The biggest improvement is always in the quality of a recording. After that, headphones make the biggest difference. If you want to make a leap in sound quality, get better headphones.

I wasn't all that impressed with the HD-595. They're sort of in that mid-fi "hell" zone. You get a huge performance boost when you start off with the SR-60, MDR-V6, or other entry level headphones. They're pretty damn good. However, spending a little more on mid-fi lands you in the zone where the improvements are marginal.

I'd recommend stepping up to a HD-600/650, K-701, DT880, or RS-1. Those aren't the extreme high end, but they will make a significant upgrade to what you're using. Give it some thought.
 
Oct 9, 2009 at 4:48 AM Post #5 of 20

928GTS

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Yeah,if I'm listening deeply I always try to have something in 320 v0 or FLAC. I've always heard the 701's are hella analytical and need a very good amp to bring them out. I already find my V6's on the edge of being too bright. If you're listening to a bright recording you're really going to know about it.

What is the sound signature of the 880's?

When I sit and listen between the 650's and my V6's there are *some differences*,some things the 650 does better than the V6's and some thing the V6's do better than the 650's so it'd be nice to have a pair of 650's for a counterpoint to my V6's. I just need to track down a pair at a reasonable price.
 
Oct 10, 2009 at 3:05 AM Post #6 of 20

feifan

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Quote:

Originally Posted by 928GTS /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Yeah,if I'm listening deeply I always try to have something in 320 v0 or FLAC. I've always heard the 701's are hella analytical and need a very good amp to bring them out. I already find my V6's on the edge of being too bright. If you're listening to a bright recording you're really going to know about it.

What is the sound signature of the 880's?

When I sit and listen between the 650's and my V6's there are *some differences*,some things the 650 does better than the V6's and some thing the V6's do better than the 650's so it'd be nice to have a pair of 650's for a counterpoint to my V6's. I just need to track down a pair at a reasonable price.



Flac recordings are better than mp3, but if the original recordings were subpar, flac would still suck. As Uncle Erik says, make sure you have a known good quality lossless recording for your test. If the 650 still doesn't impress, you may need a beefier amp. If possible, borrow one from a friend and see if it makes a difference.

Also, in general, if you prefer analytical to musical, then you may want to at least look at SS amps.

I have to agree with Uncle Erik. Get the best possible cans, first, and the HD650 is a highly respected reference model. With the 650 as your base, you can then experiment with different recordings and amps.

Without a base of known quality, upgrading is a crap shoot.
 
Oct 10, 2009 at 3:58 AM Post #7 of 20

charliex

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And my vote definitely goes for getting better phones - step up at least to a mid range phone such as the HD650, RS-1 (or HF-2), K701, DT880 or even an ESW10JPN if you want portability.
 
Oct 10, 2009 at 5:16 AM Post #8 of 20

priest

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I agree with everything that's been said (with the exception that I like the HD 595, although I grant that they are a little grainy). I did not intend to dis the V6. I had the 7506 and thought they sounded good.

Maybe you should audition the DT 880, especially since you indicated that money is an object (they are the cheapest of the mid-fi headphones I think). They would be a definite step up from your Sonys, and I would describe them as neutralish. While some people find them bright, and I agreed when I heard them at a meet, I bought a pair to audition at home, and instantly knew that I would keep them. They did not seem bright at all on my system. Just pure, clean, fast and involving. And incredibly comfortable and sturdy. In any event, I don't think you would find them nearly as bright at the SR325, especially if you were listening to the non-i version. Amazon has them for around $250, and you can return them if you don't like them. Something to think about anyway.
 
Oct 10, 2009 at 6:44 AM Post #9 of 20

malldian

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The 595 was my first head-fi purchase and I was pretty disappointed. That were dull and lifeless to me. Luckily I decided to give things another try.
 
Oct 10, 2009 at 9:19 AM Post #10 of 20
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Is your source just a DAP or computer sound card? As well as better headphones, a better source might be in order.
 
Oct 10, 2009 at 7:57 PM Post #11 of 20

Seamaster

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Quote:

Originally Posted by 928GTS /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Yeah,if I'm listening deeply I always try to have something in 320 v0 or FLAC. I've always heard the 701's are hella analytical and need a very good amp to bring them out. I already find my V6's on the edge of being too bright. If you're listening to a bright recording you're really going to know about it.

What is the sound signature of the 880's?

When I sit and listen between the 650's and my V6's there are *some differences*,some things the 650 does better than the V6's and some thing the V6's do better than the 650's so it'd be nice to have a pair of 650's for a counterpoint to my V6's. I just need to track down a pair at a reasonable price.



DT880 sound cool (cold) compare to HD650. Nice high. Less bass and body than HD650. More " open " sounding. I would suggest you to get HD600.
 
Oct 11, 2009 at 1:11 AM Post #12 of 20

928GTS

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I'm running from the line out of my Creative Zen Vision M. I'm thinking about getting a Hotaudio Straight so I can use my laptop for listening to FLAC material. I understand about the good source material,I've listened to quite a few poorly ripped albums and I know what you're talking about.

I really *do* like the 650's and the more I've been listening to them the more I can see differences between them. They both do their own thing really quite well. It's just that the 650 seems to do it's own thing a bit better than the V6's. I do appreciate the sound stage that the 650's present which is probably due to the fact that the drivers at least feel a bit further away from my ears than they do on the V6's. The 650's have a more 3D sound stage where the V6's are a bit more flat in terms of sound stage depth. I do appreciate,however,the V6's more up front presentation as it really helps for making guitar sounds more alive.

The amp is certainly substantial enough to drive the 650's. I can take them up to the level where they're pushing some serious air without any problem as well as having room left to spare.

If I have a chance to audition other phones I'll certainly give it a shot.
 
Oct 11, 2009 at 1:51 AM Post #13 of 20

Covenant

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Seamaster /img/forum/go_quote.gif
DT880 sound cool (cold) compare to HD650. Nice high. Less bass and body than HD650. More " open " sounding. I would suggest you to get HD600.


x2. I concur with the above impressions of the DT880 Vs the HD650, and I also suggest going for the HD600 rather than the 650.
 
Oct 11, 2009 at 2:14 AM Post #14 of 20

mrarroyo

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The DT880 are a tricky beast, I had an opportunity of trying different versions and impedances. My favorite was the 2003 in 250 ohms, it was the most balanced and clear of them all (over 20 year old unit to the 2005 250 ohm version). Another great can would be an used AKG K500/501, occasionally you can get them for under $150. IMO these out of production AKG's are amazing sounding cans. Cheers and good luck.
 
Oct 11, 2009 at 2:51 AM Post #15 of 20

erikzen

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Currawong /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Is your source just a DAP or computer sound card? As well as better headphones, a better source might be in order.


Another vote for a better source here.

One of my first "high end" headphones were the DT931. I wish I still had those cans. The DT880 has a similar sound signature. I think that's a can that punches above its weight.
 

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