A new Team STAX member is born.....
Mar 22, 2002 at 5:40 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 14

Keiso

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Well, I did it. I just shelled out $950 bucks and bought a set of STAX 3030 Classic System II.

I'm wearing them now as I'm typing this. Was it worth it? I'll wait till I've burned them in for at least 200 hours before I make any final statement about their sound quality... but so far so good
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First impression:

The amp is beautiful.... the volume knob, the finish, everything smells quality! Very nicely packed in too, you can tell they have been exposed to minimal stress during transport.

The cans.... more comfortable than the HD 600, IMO. Doesn't cramp your head like a vice. That's because the frame is made of thin plastic. But if you should break it, it's easily replaceable if you've got the spare part.

As for the leather pads.... feels very "cool" at first, but after an hour on my head, I miss my Senn HD590 pads. You can buy new pads in Japan if these should wear out, but it's still the same as the stock ones. I'm going to write to Stax later and ask them to make something ala Senns
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Sound quality? Well, if you have heard electrostat speakers before, you know what to expect. Absolutely no tactile bass at all. Really. There are bass, but not the same kind of bass from dynamic headphones. Whether it's a bad thing or good, it's a personal preference I guess.

I was originally going to buy the Basic System set, but after reading Kelly's comment, I auditioned the Classic model for half an hour today to find out if there's indeed such a difference....

Using the CDs I listen to most, I can't say if the Classics have deeper or higher extension than the basic, but one thing I could notice rather clearly this time, was that the treble is much more "airy" on the Classics. I couldn't get the same sensation right now at home, I guess partly because I haven't burned them in yet, or most likely because my Sony SACD player is far inferior compared to that bad @ss Cary Audio player they hooked up with the Staxes at the shop. I hope this will improve after burn-in, if not, it means my CD player just suck @ss, and that I need to upgrade it to match my Staxes. God!!!
eek.gif


Back to the sound, like I said, there's no tactile bass, as people already have mentioned here. So I guess some people will not like Stax if they are used to Grados (or Senns). I found it rather weird at first, because my HD590s seemed to give more life to the music.

But I like eletrostat sound. In fact, I reckon the best speakers in the world are the Quad ESL 989. What these Staxes do in the rest of the freq. spectrum, more than makes up for the lack of tactile bass.

Well, this is just a first impression. Gotta go to work now to the hospital (even though I do not want to leave these babies alone at home....)

To be continued!!
 
Mar 22, 2002 at 5:58 PM Post #2 of 14

Driftwood

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congratulations on your purchase! I am glad to hear you are enjoying them! Please remember to post a review after you have listened to them for a while!

However, as a side note, I do not understand why people complain about the fit of the HD-600. Once I get it adjusted right, I can't even feel it! Of all the headphones I have tried, the HD-600 seems to put the least pressure on my head!

The only thing I can guess is that people need to tilt the earcups forward or backward where they connect to the band? If I tilt them all the way forward, there is a little pressure I guess, but even then it is not enough to make me really note this as a negative aspect of the HD-600....

Maybe I just have a skinny head?

Driftwood
 
Mar 22, 2002 at 6:42 PM Post #3 of 14

Trawlerman

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You lucky man. The 3030 system is a killer.

I've been using the Lambda Nova Basic system for 5 years now and can say that they are the best headphones i've ever heard.

I daren't listen to a pair of Stax Phones with a tube driver as I know i'll want them. Made that mistake too many times.



Anyway, enjoy your new purchase
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Sound As Ever
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Mar 22, 2002 at 7:19 PM Post #4 of 14

kelly

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Keiso

Thanks for posting your impressions. I think the high frequency information and the feeling of "more air" are relate but from what I recall I think you're right. Either way, I think upgrading from the Basic was probably not a bad way to spend money.

As you know, Stax are almost certainly in my future at some point so I look forward to hearing your long term impressions. If you don't mind, could you also post where you bought, how much you paid and whether they ship to the US. It seems that most of the places in the US that carry Stax charge full retail for them and no matter how nice the sales guy is, I'd probably still have to go mail order. (The Classic II that I auditioned was $1400. The Basic II was selling for $800.)
 
Mar 22, 2002 at 7:35 PM Post #5 of 14

setmenu

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Keiso
YO! welcome to Team Stax...hehe
very_evil_smiley.gif

On the bass front try lifting the rear corner of thr earpad...see
what you think,I find it helps with some recordings[maybe a bit petty see what you think].
Bass aside that open sound is nice isn't it?

Anyway happy listening with your new toy
biggrin.gif
biggrin.gif


Setmenu
 
Mar 22, 2002 at 8:01 PM Post #6 of 14

RickG

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Congratulations on your new Stax phones, Keiso! In your preliminary discription, I'd say you nailed the sonic character of the electrostatics. If your experience is anything like mine, you'll only grow to appreciate them more as time passes!.......
wink.gif
 
Mar 22, 2002 at 8:33 PM Post #7 of 14

Keiso

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A small note about Omega II:

I still find the traditional earspeaker design better than the Omega II shape, and the owner of the shop agreed with me.

I really want to give the 4070 earspeakers a listen. They are of the same spec as the Omega, but with the traditional design and are closed for studio use.....

I guess I'll have to wait till I get back to Japan to try that one out
smily_headphones1.gif
 
Mar 23, 2002 at 12:10 AM Post #8 of 14

Keiso

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Kelly:

The Classic II that I auditioned was $1400. The Basic II was selling for $800.)

That is outrageous.... no way in hell are the Basics worth 800 bucks! For that price, you can import a Classic set from EIFL....
(which is $720 + $80 in postage). $800 bucks for a set of Classics is a steal, IMO.
 
Mar 23, 2002 at 12:17 AM Post #9 of 14

kelly

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Quote:

Originally posted by Keiso
Kelly:

The Classic II that I auditioned was $1400. The Basic II was selling for $800.)

That is outrageous.... no way in hell are the Basics worth 800 bucks! For that price, you can import a Classic set from EIFL....
(which is $720 + $80 in postage). $800 bucks for a set of Classics is a steal, IMO.


This is what I suspected. Thanks. This was also the math I did when I determined that I could not in good faith keep the W2002 even though I thought it to be a fantastic headphone. With a good source (which I'll be working on), I'd rather my $800 headphone be the Stax.

I emailed EIFL for a price list yesterday.

Of course, the W2002 has other benefits--doesn't require a specialized amp, is easily driven (thus not really requiring any amp), is a closed design (isolation), is rare, beautiful, is more forgiving if you had to use it portably or somewhere away from your rig, etc. etc. There are many reasons why I'd like to have kept them but ultimately I liked the Stax better. Maybe by the time Audio-Technica does a full release of them, I'll be up to RickG's count and can jusitfy my fourth (or seventeenth as the case my be with Rick) headphone.
 
Mar 23, 2002 at 12:27 AM Post #10 of 14

RickG

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Quote:

Originally posted by kelly
Maybe by the time Audio-Technica does a full release of them, I'll be up to RickG's count and can jusitfy my fourth (or seventeenth as the case my be with Rick) headphone.


LOL, Kelly...go pick on joelongwood....he's got more phones than me. Some people collect shrunken heads, ....hey, I collect headphones...
wink.gif
 
Mar 23, 2002 at 1:10 AM Post #12 of 14

kelly

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Quote:

Originally posted by RickG

LOL, Kelly...go pick on joelongwood....he's got more phones than me. Some people collect shrunken heads, ....hey, I collect headphones...
wink.gif


I'm not sure being a shrunken head collector and a headphone collector are mutually exclusive. In fact, headphone collecting may very well be a "gateway" into collecting. Sure, lots of kids start out with just headphones, then it's fingers and toes and before you know it, shrunken heads. I bet you even have a clown suit.
 
Mar 23, 2002 at 2:39 AM Post #14 of 14

joelongwood

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Quote:

Originally posted by RickG

LOL, Kelly...go pick on joelongwood....he's got more phones than me. Some people collect shrunken heads, ....hey, I collect headphones...
wink.gif


Leave me out of this.................................please.
 

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