No problemo Pabbi1, it's just an occupational hazard of the meet. Sooner or later, someone's ankle will get snared by the lair of cable snakes and it was your turn tonight. I'm just glad the flower vase didn't go flying with it! (note: actual flowers in actual water... yikes!). At least I now have personal confirmation that the stock HD800 cable/connectors really are delicate and really do kinda suck. On the upside, they weren't HiFiMan HE-6's... might have been torqued to death in that case.
BUT HEY... what a fun meet! I think we hit a new record in terms of attendance. As mentioned above, thanks very much to Justin for traveling so far and bringing so much gear and Purk for lending us the fabled Orpheus HE-90 headphone. Wow wee. Hoo boy. Oh yeah. Driven by the Blue Hawaii it simply has no peer. Stax-009 included. Hey Sennheiser, just make more, OK? We'll buy 'em!
I saw lots of new faces tonight. Some familiar, some as brothers/friends/new recruits for the Head-Fi Legion of Bankruptcy. Er, I mean, "eager new headphone enthusiasts". Yeah that's what I meant.
During every meet I try to cross a new price/performance threshold. This time, a customized (and woodgrain-ified) O2 amp/DAC combo was the ticket. I could not believe it was only $300 for the pair. Usually when I plug my HD800 into a rig, it will almost instantaneously reveal any flaws. Too etchy on top. Weak bass. Too sterile. But it took quite a while for any deficiencies to reveal themselves on the O2 stack. Maxvla and I exchanged astonished looks while demoing it with our HD800's. "Am I really hearing what I'm hearing?!?" Eventually the HD800 outran the O2 stack but not before leaving us impressed. Word is that particular O2 stack had been customized and tweaked by its previous owner. All I can say is that whatever was done, for $300, I've not heard a better combo at that price. A serious game changer at the value end of the spectrum... totally.
I'm still quite pleased with my Decware CSP2+, Concero DAC, and HD800. I've since upgraded the rectifier with the EML meshplate 5U4G which adds a touch more resolution. Otherwise it remains, in my opinion, the best price/performance tube-based HD800 rig for digital playback. I also think every component in the chain is visually gorgeous, but that's more of a subjective thing.
BTW, if you are a fan of the board game Quarto, you might be challenged at the next meet. Thank you Trevor for indulging me in a few games.
Okies... let's hear your 2c folks!
(foodie note: I think I should have put out a sign suggesting how to mix the guava juice with the carbonated lime water. I think a lot of folks just drank the plain unsweetened water...)
Just got home a bit ago. Thanks to everyone who came. I'll post some impressions later, but I wanted to also thank Purk for the HE90 loaner. Second time I've heard them, but this time on a better amp. They are 99% perfect. Give me that signature but with HD800 presentation and I would do whatever it took to get one.
I took a big bite of that salsa and THEN read the jar...oh habanero ! Could of gone back for more, loved it. Thanks to Nick for being such a great host, and Justin/everyone else for bringing all that great gear. I fell in love with the Fostex TH600. I am going to get Burrito to find out exactly how the O2 combo was modded and then we can build another set for fun. I look forward to playing with the CSP2+ next time. I am curious if it would be a suitable pre-amp for my Mcintosh?