Audeze LCD-4
Dec 5, 2020 at 6:22 PM Post #8,881 of 9,853

jlbrach

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what is missing from the topping aint power....there is a reason it const thousands less than the better amps...I am not suggesting it is bad it isnt for the cost
 
Dec 6, 2020 at 10:09 AM Post #8,882 of 9,853

Kozwoz

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I'm not a Topping A90 fanboy. The sound it provides is neutral, clean, powerful. It doesn't emphasise any part of the frequency range, it's not sterile or warm. I would describe it as flat. It is only bested in my opinion by the Benchmark HPA4 which costs thousands more. The A90 provides an excellent base to then apply DSP. I have access to all my AU plugins including Waves, FabFilter and Abbey Road analogue emulation for example. Where as other people will spend thousands on an amp that will essentially change the tonality or sound of the headphone and provide some synergy. I can dial in as much bass weight, warmth, smoothness and soundstage in a matter of mins and the beauty is I can do this on the fly based on my preference that day or I can recall a chain of DSP presets i've created before that work. If I want I can make the LCD4 sound like it's running on a tube or Class A amp and I would be really surprised if anyone could tell the difference. It really is no effort at all on my part and I saved a lot of money... You guy keep spending your hard earned money on the expensive amps.
 
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Dec 6, 2020 at 11:03 AM Post #8,883 of 9,853

driftingbunnies

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I'm not a Topping A90 fanboy. The sound it provides is neutral, clean, powerful. It doesn't emphasise any part of the frequency range, it's not sterile or warm. I would describe it as flat. It is only bested in my opinion by the Benchmark HPA4 which costs thousands more. The A90 provides an excellent base to then apply DSP. I have access to all my AU plugins including Waves, FabFilter and Abbey Road analogue emulation for example. Where as other people will spend thousands on an amp that will essentially change the tonality or sound of the headphone and provide some synergy. I can dial in as much bass weight, warmth, smoothness and soundstage in a matter of mins and the beauty is I can do this on the fly based on my preference that day or I can recall a chain of DSP presets i've created before that work. If I want I can make the LCD4 sound like it's running on a tube or Class A amp and I would be really surprised if anyone could tell the difference. It really is no effort at all on my part and I saved a lot of money... You guy keep spending your hard earned money on the expensive amps.

Stop the presses everyone! Topping has cracked the code! They've made the amp to end all amps and have made all the research and development that other companies have done for decades essentially useless. What a time to be alive!
 
Dec 6, 2020 at 11:05 AM Post #8,884 of 9,853

Kozwoz

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Stop the presses everyone! Topping has cracked the code! They've made the amp to end all amps and have made all the research and development that other companies have done for decades essentially useless. What a time to be alive!
Well actually my point is that it sounds fairly uninspiring which is a good thing for the way I use it and because it's so flat with conjunction with DSP you can make it sound like whatever you want it to with the power it provides. So yes amplification has been achieved for a fraction of the cost of more expensive amps. It is rather remarkable what you're getting for your money compared to more expensive amps.
 
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Dec 6, 2020 at 11:09 AM Post #8,885 of 9,853

Bhk1004

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Well actually my point is that it sounds fairly uninspiring which is a good thing for the way I use it and because it's so flat you can make it sound like whatever you want it given the level of power it provides.
I dont think you actually get it but that's fine. I am happy you are happy. Your wallet thanks you.
 
Dec 6, 2020 at 11:17 AM Post #8,886 of 9,853

a7xdeity

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I mean my observation of owning the a90 is nothing beats it for the price , however I have owned higher end audio-gd and a Rag v1. I was trying to find a decent Class A amplifier without spending too much money but I'm guessing I'll either go for the rag v2 or the Audio-GD Master 9.
 
Dec 6, 2020 at 11:17 AM Post #8,887 of 9,853

Kozwoz

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Well I encourage discussion. What am I missing? People can continue to ridicule me thats fine. I do wonder if I'm getting it all wrong also... I've tried expensive amps with the LCD4 and the plug and play aspect of not having to deal with DSP is the only advantage that I can see. Analogue emulation and EQ provides so much more imo. People are missing out I think if they're not at least doing some EQ with the LCD4. Which is what the Audeze plugin aims to do anyway.
 
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Dec 6, 2020 at 11:20 AM Post #8,888 of 9,853

Bhk1004

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Well I encourage discussion. What am I missing? People can continue to ridicule me thats fine. I do wonder if I'm getting it all wrong also... I've tried expensive amps with the LCD4 and the plug and play aspect of not having to deal with DSP is the only advantage that I can see.
Reread your last sentence. That's not encouraging discussion, you are telling everyone they are idiots for spending money and that you know a secret we dont.
 
Dec 6, 2020 at 11:46 AM Post #8,892 of 9,853

driftingbunnies

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Based on my knowledge, I don't believe there's a way that you can truly replicate class A or tube sound just from EQ. If that were truly the case, I believe more people would do it and we would see more of it. As much as audiophiles enjoy chasing the next gear, I believe a lot of us also want to make sure that the money we spend is worth it. If software can replace thousands of dollars of gear, I think people would be willing to try it so that they can use that money for more headphones or on other pleasures of life.
 
Dec 6, 2020 at 11:58 AM Post #8,893 of 9,853

Kozwoz

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Software has very much replaced thousands of dollars worth of gear. For starters most audiophile enthusiasts are no longer spending hundreds of dollars on hardware EQ's which would not have been possible 20 years ago. Music producers no longer need to rent expensive studios to emulate analogue gear, in can be done in the box. There are plenty of plugins that replicate different desks and amps adding subtle distortion, warmth and weight in the bass.

Waves vinyl tape, tubes and transistor plugins.. FabFilter Saturn has a lot of different amps and saturation options including different tubes. Abbey Road Brilliance pack is also great.

I'm not trying to have a dig at anyone. I think in my initial post it was a bad attempt at smug humour and for that I'm sorry. As a professional sound engineer that uses plugins every day to attain a certain sound I am here to tell everyone that a lot can be achieved with software.
 
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Dec 8, 2020 at 6:10 AM Post #8,894 of 9,853

Solan

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I'm not trying to have a dig at anyone. I think in my initial post it was a bad attempt at smug humour and for that I'm sorry. As a professional sound engineer that uses plugins every day to attain a certain sound I am here to tell everyone that a lot can be achieved with software.

I believe you. The interesting part, to me, is what can and what can not be fixed through software. I would believe distortion tops that list. Frequency range too. And also, some fundamental quality aspect of the headphones (or amp) in question. But what else? And what are the limits to what you can drive from the software/source end? Can you make an Empyrean sound like an LCD-4, and vice versa? (Maybe?) But can you make any of them sound like a high-model Grado ... or the other way around? I guess you can EQ out a few dB, but how many before it starts to distort things?
 
Dec 8, 2020 at 6:17 AM Post #8,895 of 9,853

Solan

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Based on my knowledge, I don't believe there's a way that you can truly replicate class A or tube sound just from EQ. If that were truly the case, I believe more people would do it and we would see more of it.

I believe you too. Class A is about qualities like distortion. By all means, it might be that in the future, your source gets equipped with an AI that can compensate for the difference between a class A and a somewhat lower standard, by feeding the amp a signal that is initially distorted, but that the AI has calculated that the amp will distort in a way that goes the exact opposite way of the distortion it fed the amp. Maybe. But we're not there yet, and EQ is not even close to AI.

But that said, I must admit I look forward to when we get "smart EQ" that is actually smart! EQ that can truly separate each instrument, even, and let us control each of those individually. "Adjusting the bass" would suddenly mean adjusting the instrument known as a bass, and only that, and not the deeper tones of each and every instrument. That would be quite awesome! It would probably require a current supercomputer, but who cares? In 10-15 years we'll all have one of those in our cellhones.
 

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