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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. phthora
    I agree with you entirely. I also find them more comfortable than the ultrasuedes, but I have a hard time with any non-leather, non-pleather pads.
  2. stilleh
    I´ve just ordered an 8 core OFC cable with 2.5mm TRRS jack for my NO. I have the newer version of audioquest cable but I just find it bulky and difficult to handle. Hope to get in within a few weeks so will review it later here.
    Colors likes this.
  3. Colors
    Loving the low distortion and organic/mellow sound of these headphones.

    ...Gah they sound so good I’m going to demo the NightHawk and see if they’re worth buying as well. Or perhaps look at the 6XX for variety.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2018
  4. Colors
    Thinking of getting a 2.5mm balanced Lavricable cable (pure silver) for my NightOwls...price is like $190 for a 1.2m...

    Almost half the price of an on sale NightOwl...anyone experienced good results with pure silver or cable upgrades in general? Seems like there's a lot of potential to be tapped.
  5. Bern2
    NightHawk for 299 on Amazon (US).
  6. nwavesailor
    Just 'one NH left' at $299!
  7. phthora
    I switched to a OFC cable and noticed a decently sized improvement in sound. Not sure if it changed the FR at all, but it seemed to bring the sound into greater focus, making things sound clearer and more detailed. Going balanced has further improved those aspects of the sound. I use a Venus Audio cable with them at home and a Dyson Gotham cable for them on the go. Unfortunately, I cannot weigh in about silver cables with this headphone.
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2018
    Colors likes this.
  8. nwavesailor
    I am NOT a cable guy and I found little differences between the OEM cable(s) that came with the NH and an aftermarket amazon / E-Bay cable. Then I tried a WyWires Platinum and was quite surprised how much better the NH sounded............crazy good!
    Colors likes this.
  9. Colors
    Thanks for the comments. Might have to bite the bullet and buy it. The stock cable (although good sonically) is too thick and troublesome.
  10. phthora
    I hated the stock cable and thought it was a ridiculous design. Too thick on the lower end, too thin on the top end, too short, ugly, and worst of all, I think it adversely affected the sound. I didn't like the headphones much until I switchted the cable to a Periapt I had for my 400is. After the switch, it sounded a good deal more resolving and clear.

    The nice thing is that the 2.5mm connectors on the NOs are pretty common. I've been able to try out 5 different cables I had for other gear before buying a cable specifically for the NO and, of course, you won't be stuck with something that only fits one headphone (like with my balanced cable for the EL-8).
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2018
    Joong and Colors like this.
  11. kennyb123
    I had a chance to audition the Wireworld Nano-Platinum headphone cables with my NightOwls. This all-silver cable delivered what I considered to be a fairly significant upgrade. There were obvious improvements in clarity and transparency. What most amazed me was the improvement to tone and timbre. I evaluated this cable using most Miles Davis' "E.S.P." and the sense that I was hearing a real trumpet a a real saxophone almost knocked me out of my chair. But these cables are pricey and I couldn't justify the expense for the NightOwls. I went one step down with their Nano-Silver, which features silver-clad copper.

    Some day I hope to less pricey silver cable - like either the Lavricable or Moon Audio's Silver Dragon. I wonder how close these would get to the performance of the Nano-Platinum.

    As far as cable upgrades in general - personally speaking I consider it a must with the NightHawk/NightOwl. The stock cable stinks.
    trellus and Colors like this.
  12. lugnut
    That's not too bad of a price, if it is pure silver. Pure silver is very expensive. I would stay away from silver plated copper, but that's just me.

    I also could not deal with the stock cable. I bought a 6n pure copper balanced and felt it made a audible difference, not night & day, but a difference.

    I have not heard the Platinum, too much for my budget, but have a WyWires Red that I like a lot. Also have the Moon Audio blue that I use on my Senn hd 650 that was not too expensive that sounds good. For me cables just add that last little bit, I also just like a well made non rubber coated cable. JMHO
  13. Joong
    As electrical engineer for long time I have had hard time to understand the cable impact of the sound, but I had good experience for the significant improvement by changing cable.
    And it was very surprising one. It might be capacitance / inductance change of the wires as in typical electric filter, or some antenna action on long wire for EMI.
    Since then I was very serious for changing cable for sound improvement which is not very predictable for given setup of the chain of gears for my music.
    Still I am not so sure that certain type of metal wires like silver / silver coated copper / cyro-treated 7N copper have their own impact.
    But I can be persuaded by the dielectric property / thickness, winding type, the total length, or / and etc...
    For sure thing is the brand / model number of the cable for the good matching phone.
    I think that there should be a chart for characterizations as in a simple table for choose the right one.
    Jearly410 and Colors like this.
  14. Colors
    I think the most obvious difference is when you switch from pure copper to pure silver. Try it and A/B it on the same headphones/IEMs and you will see what I mean.

    In general, I find: pure silver = soundstage, treble and mids, pure copper = mid-bass, sub-bass and silverplated copper = mids

    I find IEMs with warm sounding signatures, especially ones that have a dynamic driver pair well with pure silver or spc was it opens up the upper treble and makes the bass more tight. Anything with a lot of BAs (balanced armatures), I find pairs well with a SPC or copper cable to increase the low end and warmth of the sound signature.

    Just my observations and experiments with custom cables.
    Joong likes this.
  15. Colors
    The sound signature of these headphones (stock setup) is perfect for late night listening.
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