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AudioQuest NightOwl - A closed-back NightHawk

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by xero1, Aug 14, 2016.
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  1. NoelAustin
    Camper1995, thanks very much for the comprehensive comparison. Is there a particular silver cable you would most recommend for the Nightowl? I will throw my hat in the ring as another who believes the hybrid pads are best for the NOs. Especially for classical music listeners. The pleather pads can make the treble too harsh and the microsuede pads can subdue the bass too much. I do enjoy the pleather pads for modern electronic music.
  2. Camper1995
    My pleasure, I personally went for this one, 1.5m balanced:
    I've had it for about 2-3 months and the build quality of it is superb, physically it's slightly stiffer to the touch but nothing crazy and you can't exactly bend it too much either, but imo that's a good thing because it prevents you from damaging the thin individual wires. I've talked about the sound part already, so overall I'm very satisfied with this one. Definitely gonna grab one for my Auteur in the future.
  3. Serge Bernamej
    I had the chance to hear the Denon to be honest. I did find the Denon a but shouty, but also more energetic and dynamic than the NO. Do you not find that the Denon is more “focused” and dynamic and energetic ? Maybe more expressive and musical ?
  4. Camper1995
    I mean, out of the two, Denon is the "better" headphone, definitely more "normal" sounding like most other headphones on the market. I don't know if I can call it musical, but it's definitely a good blend between analytical and musical, bit more on the analytical side in my opinion. For example, HD800 or Utopia would be on the analytical side for me and something like Nightowl, Auteur, Atticus or LCD2C musical.
    Audioquest headphones are definitely a love or hate thing.

    The real question is which one do you enjoy more, that's all this hobby is about :).
    Denon might be a more dynamic headphone with clearer representation of music, but I personally immerse into my music with NightOwls far more.
  5. Serge Bernamej
    Yes I totally get your point. One thing’s for sure I would never ever sell my Nightowl, precisely because it does things no other (closed) headphone does.
    Colors likes this.
  6. kennyb123

    I couldn’t agree more about the stock cable being garbage. It’s so bad that it surprises me that these headphones could have so many fans. I would have returned mine had I not been fortunate to have easy access to better cables.
  7. NoelAustin
    I am not returning my NOs because they are both the best sounding and most comfortable closed back headphones under $500. They would be worth the purchase price if no cable were included.
    dmdm, Beagle and Colors like this.
  8. kennyb123
    Wonderful. You will be that much more delighted after replacing the cable, should you choose to squeeze more goodness out of them.
    JohnBal likes this.
  9. Soundizer


    Great find and I share your enthusiasm.

    May I ask what you mean by they will be off the market soon?
  10. PinkyPowers
    Audioquest is leaving the headphone business.
  11. NoelAustin
    I am currently returning a Cowon Plenue D audio player I recently purchased. The sound quality is good, but for NOs and NHs I found that the Plenue D narrows the soundstage - it pushes the sounds of most interest toward the middle of the soundstage. This can make sense from a marketing perspective - portable audio players are mostly used by people for closed-back, over-ear, or in-ear headphones where soundstage is not of central importance. Any recommendations for portable players which complement the soundstage of a headphone like NO or NH?
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2018
    Grandmasboy likes this.
  12. Grandmasboy
    I too would love to hear what daps are recommended for either the NH or NO .. Preferably under or around $400-500

    I've never tried my shozy alien, colorfly c10 or AK jr with any full size headphone.. But I reckon one of them would be a nice match to a NO..maybe
  13. JerryLeeds
    Hello everyone .. I just joined the NO club a few weeks ago ... Loving this headphone ...

    Pairs well with massdrop CTH and Micca Origen G2 ... Neutraling with unbalanced into Questyle CMA400i ... I'm waiting on a balanced cable to retest with CMA400i

    Protein leather pads have a funky smell ... Replaced with a pair of older NH original leather pads ... Also got a replacement cable from arctic cables ... the stock silver cable isn't for me.

    Looks like I finally found my office setup.

    Linear power supply (dual USB and 5v DC)
    Micca Origen G2
    Portable dap (either Opus #1S or Questyle QP1R)
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2018
  14. waveSounds
    Another late joiner to the club here, came back to the office from a vape about 20 minutes ago to find that an Owl had landed! On sale for £350 down from £600 was too tempting to bury the itch.

    The build and presentation is exquisite. Giving them a run-through from my V30 and already love their presentation of music. I think they might actually have the edge over the 1540 for comfort, which is by far the most comfortable headphone I've worn.
    trellus likes this.
  15. DW75
    There is definitely a good burn in time on the Nightowl. I have seen some people claim that they need 300 hours. In my experience, my pair reached its final sound at around 150 hours or so. It is an awesome headphone though. Some claim that this headphone does not need an amp to shine. I don't agree with this either. When connecting to a quality amp, this headphone improves greatly.
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