FINAL IMPRESSIONS: HORNET AFTER 500 HOURS
Feb 14, 2007 at 4:45 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 159

KrooLism

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[size=x-small]First Impressions: Hornet - Dear Lord this thing is small...[/size]

(I used to have a Bithead)

Setup: See signature.

Music:
Massive Attack - Protection, Dissolved Girl
Vanessa Mae - Classical Gas, Toccata and Fugue in D Minor
The Gorillaz - Re-Hash, 19/2000
Groove Armada - Suntoucher
Eric Clapton - Tears in Heaven
Nu Energy - Atomic Orbital

I don't really believe in burn-in for amps and cables. Headphones *maybe* as the diaphragm needs to stretch and warm up.

As for a review, let's just say my quest in the walkabout department is finally over.

Build Quality: The Concrete Nuclear Fallout shelter of portable amps.

Bass: If your ER4S lacks bass, it's just not amped properly.
After amping through the Hornet, the bass is smooth and punchy. Didn't even know my ER4's could do that...!

Mid and Highs: Excellent as usual but more refined.

Detail: My music is now super clear and detailed. Sound-stage has improved remarkably. Better than the bithead's crossfeed.


The ER4S is extremely inefficient and even on an amp as powerful as the Hornet, I've got it on high gain with the potentiometer at 12 o'clock.

But the Hornet can hold its own and like I said, my portable quest is officially over.

KrooL

Quote:

Originally Posted by KrooLism /img/forum/go_quote.gif
OK, second impressions. 100 hours of play time and 85 hours since last used.

Is it just me or am I hearing slightly less bass?

The music seems smoother and clear, but I have the feeling it's lost some of its dynamics.

It's really hard to tell.
First Impressions are always the best. It may have hit me like a freight train first time because I was using ER4S unamped through the headphone out, where the music was boring, flat and lifeless... to a new Hornet.

Now, as some of you will claim, the music has changed but I can't hear any difference because the change has been slow.

I really need to compare after I have had mine for over 500 hours and someone gets a brand new one.

Who want's to order one just in time for the AU meet in Sydney?
eggosmile.gif



 
Feb 14, 2007 at 4:48 AM Post #2 of 159

Morph201

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Haha, well that sums it up!
wink.gif
That was my first reaction to! It looks a lot bigger in pics. Grats on your amp! Think it sounds nice now, wait till 400+... I'm @ hour 300 on mine and it's really opening up nice!
 
Feb 14, 2007 at 5:19 AM Post #3 of 159

pretzelb

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Congrats of the purchase. I'm still debating my next move but the Hornet is tempting.
 
Feb 14, 2007 at 5:26 AM Post #4 of 159

MatsudaMan

aka JohannesBrahms, KittlesLittles, Bigglesworth.
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With er4s you shouldn't have to be at 12 o'clock on high gain. That's craziness. I usually listen on low or medium gain. Better sound quality that way.
 
Feb 14, 2007 at 5:32 AM Post #6 of 159

trose49

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Quote:

Originally Posted by KrooLism /img/forum/go_quote.gif
(I used to have a Bithead)

Setup: See signature.

Music:
Massive Attack - Protection, Dissolved Girl
Vanessa Mae - Classical Gas, Toccata and Fugue in D Minor
The Gorillaz - Re-Hash, 19/2000
Groove Armada - Suntoucher
Eric Clapton - Tears in Heaven
Nu Energy - Atomic Orbital

I don't really believe in burn-in for amps and cables. Headphones *maybe* as the diaphragm needs to stretch and warm up.

As for a review, let's just say my quest in the walkabout department is finally over.

Build Quality: The Concrete Nuclear Fallout shelter of portable amps.

Bass: If your ER4S lacks bass, it's just not amped properly.
After amping through the Hornet, the bass is smooth and punchy. Didn't even know my ER4's could do that...!

Mid and Highs: Excellent as usual but more refined.

Detail: My music is now super clear and detailed. Sound-stage has improved remarkably. Better than the bithead's crossfeed.


The ER4S is extremely inefficient and even on an amp as powerful as the Hornet, I've got it on high gain with the potentiometer at 12 o'clock.

But the Hornet can hold its own and like I said, my portable quest is officially over.

KrooL




You will learn my son!!! Burn-in of a Hornet is a must. Even Ray of RSA will tell you the same. Your Hornet will go thru many changes over the next 400 hrs. I recommend juts getting it over and letg er rip day and night logging the hours and listening when you want.

But you will hear the following. Bass goes from slighlty overstated to Deep punchy accurate and perfect. Mids will smooth out and become less grainy. Highs will be come as if they were made of liquid.

Correct me if I wrong Boys!

You will have many more rto collaborate my story!!!

But Enjoy. You have just entered a new level!

Whats the source?
 
Feb 14, 2007 at 5:46 AM Post #8 of 159

KrooLism

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Quote:

Originally Posted by MatsudaMan /img/forum/go_quote.gif
With er4s you shouldn't have to be at 12 o'clock on high gain. That's craziness. I usually listen on low or medium gain. Better sound quality that way.


120'clock on high is probably the loudest I would want to listen to my headphones on. It did drive it on medium gain quite well. I thought the gain didn't affect sound quality. Isn't that "gain" by definition?

Quote:

Originally Posted by lmilhan /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Have fun with your new toy.

If you think the Hornet is small, you should hold a Tomahawk in your hand. The Hornet looks like it could eat the Tomahawk in 1 or 2 bites.

evil_smiley.gif



I know - that scares me. I might lose it between the stitchings of my pants pockets.

Quote:

Originally Posted by trose49 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
You will learn my son!!! Burn-in of a Hornet is a must. Even Ray of RSA will tell you the same. Your Hornet will go thru many changes over the next 400 hrs. I recommend juts getting it over and letg er rip day and night logging the hours and listening when you want.

But you will hear the following. Bass goes from slighlty overstated to Deep punchy accurate and perfect. Mids will smooth out and become less grainy. Highs will be come as if they were made of liquid.

Correct me if I wrong Boys!

You will have many more rto collaborate my story!!!

But Enjoy. You have just entered a new level!

Whats the source?



Source is the iAudio X5 though for the test, I didn't have the ALO dock on.

OK - if perhaps this is true and I am hoping to convince a friend to buy a Hornet now. By the time he gets his act together, should be about 400 hours on my amp. I will do a test then.
evil_smiley.gif


I may then be converted to a beliver for burn in for amps.
 
Feb 14, 2007 at 5:58 AM Post #9 of 159

trose49

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Quote:

Originally Posted by KrooLism /img/forum/go_quote.gif
120'clock on high is probably the loudest I would want to listen to my headphones on. It did drive it on medium gain quite well. I thought the gain didn't affect sound quality. Isn't that "gain" by definition?



I know - that scares me. I might lose it between the stitchings of my pants pockets.



Source is the iAudio X5 though for the test, I didn't have the ALO dock on.

OK - if perhaps this is true and I am hoping to convince a friend to buy a Hornet now. By the time he gets his act together, should be about 400 hours on my amp. I will do a test then.
evil_smiley.gif


I may then be converted to a beliver for burn in for amps.



you will! I did a post on here that breaks down the hour by hour changes I

experienced I would be curous if you hear the same I will look it up for you!
 
Feb 14, 2007 at 11:32 AM Post #12 of 159

DJShadow

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I was gonna make a thread on the Hornet, but after seeing this one, I'll just post my thoughts here. It is incredibly small. Even after seeing the pic of the Hornet alongside the credit card on Ray's website thinking 'wow thats small', I was still unprepared for how petite the Hornet is. Its disconcertingly small.

Now the bit thats really killing me; I've had it in my possession for 1 and half hours but haven't listened it. The mini to mini hasn't arrived (come on oicdn!) and even if I did, the e3c is no judge of its characteristics. My Senns have been borrowed out and the sa's are still unconscious. The size of this thing keeps making wonder whether I made the right choice-was it worth the >$300? My intial choice of amp was the Gilmore Lite and as luck would have it, one appeared on the For Sale forums the day after puchasing the Hornet. Does the Hornet have even a fraction of the GL's sound quality? I'm just posting all this because the anticiption is unbearable. I have to know how much of an improvement I'm getting
blink.gif
 
Feb 14, 2007 at 11:41 AM Post #13 of 159

jdimitri

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It's worth it.. trust me
Well, maybe it's not better value than the supermicro but when the hornet works with a headphone, it WORKS

Plus, hornet has absolutely no hiss. at all. no noise, no random ringing, just music

I think at least all ES2 owners should own one
 
Feb 14, 2007 at 3:50 PM Post #14 of 159

Morph201

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Quote:

Originally Posted by DJShadow /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I was gonna make a thread on the Hornet, but after seeing this one, I'll just post my thoughts here. It is incredibly small. Even after seeing the pic of the Hornet alongside the credit card on Ray's website thinking 'wow thats small', I was still unprepared for how petite the Hornet is. Its disconcertingly small.

Now the bit thats really killing me; I've had it in my possession for 1 and half hours but haven't listened it. The mini to mini hasn't arrived (come on oicdn!) and even if I did, the e3c is no judge of its characteristics. My Senns have been borrowed out and the sa's are still unconscious. The size of this thing keeps making wonder whether I made the right choice-was it worth the >$300? My intial choice of amp was the Gilmore Lite and as luck would have it, one appeared on the For Sale forums the day after puchasing the Hornet. Does the Hornet have even a fraction of the GL's sound quality? I'm just posting all this because the anticiption is unbearable. I have to know how much of an improvement I'm getting
blink.gif



Oh Ye of little faith!
frown.gif


biggrin.gif
Hey, expect the worst possible results... and you won't be disappointed!
wink.gif
 
Feb 14, 2007 at 5:40 PM Post #15 of 159

artears

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Quote:

Originally Posted by KrooLism /img/forum/go_quote.gif
120'clock on high is probably the loudest I would want to listen to my headphones on. It did drive it on medium gain quite well. I thought the gain didn't affect sound quality. Isn't that "gain" by definition?


There must be something wrong, high gain at 1200 hours?? I have a Hornet too and with my E500s, I cannot go beyond 9 o'clock or so with the lowest gain setting. I even listen to my HD650s with the lowest gain setting at around 1 o'clock or 2. I would suggest you let someone else listen at that volume level just to understand if the problem is with your hearing or the amp itself. The high gain is really high on Hornet. The low one is meant for IEMs and the high one for Senns actually.

The gain is basically the amount of increase of output level to the input. So, with higher gain settings you increase the volume of the background hiss as well.
 

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