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Fostex x Massdrop TH-X00 Review

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by jude, Nov 24, 2015.
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  1. Richter Di
    Hi, I ordered the Dekoni Audio Fostex TH900 Elite Hybrid. Is there a video somewhere how to switch the pads of the Fostex TH-X00?
  2. jmills8
    Unscrew pad, left, counter clockwise. Remove pad from the plastic ring.
  3. Richter Di
    That's it?
  4. koover
    It is so simple and maybe one of the easiest pad changes out there. Takes about a minute or 2 total for both. You’ll laugh when you’re done it’s so simple.
    Have fun!
    Richter Di likes this.
  5. loki993
    Ok Ive been looking at these recently because Im looking for an upgrade to what I have now and I really like the bassy signature these seem to have. Here is the question though it seems that most people seem to consider the Emu Teaks as better than these in most ways. However Ive never seen the Emu Teaks directly compared the the X00 Purplehearts, only seemingly the mahogany's.

    so that said has anyone compared them directly and which did you like better? is it worth the extra 50 to 75 bucks the Teaks seem to be going for
  6. CoFire
    I have the THX00 Mohagany and PH. Both with the Eikon pads and attenuators, love them! They are different, PH more bassy, more bloat and the Mohagany with more energy in the mids. I understand the Teak to be less bassy than either of these with more lush mids but I've never heard Teaks.

    So the Lawton driver only damping mod seems to be a no brainer for the PH, has anyone tried this on the Mahogany? Worth it?
  7. loki993
    Well here is the deal for me, I love bass, I started out with DT770s pro 80s. Went to the K7xx because I wanted some more clarity and midrange, I was satisfied with them for a while, but now Im realizing that I dont really like them and now Im looking to step up to the next level. Something a little, maybe a lot, more expensive to give me the bass I want with the clarity and with less, or better no, glaring weaknesses like the Beyers or AKGs have. So if you say the teaks may have less bass I wouldn't be interested in that.

    Im basically looking for the most slam I can find, but not something that craps all over the rest of the spectrum while its at it. At least to the extent that its detracting from the experience.
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
  8. koover
    It’s a long thread so I understand you may not want to research. Good stuff though and I encourage you to do so.

    With that said, THE DRIVER DAMPENING ONLY (sorry about all caps) is what you’ll need to keep your bass and slam. It cleans up the mids by smoothing them out and brings them to the forefront somewhat and tamed the treble a bit. Not to mention the detail is better. I do need to mention, with this mod, it may seem like you lost a bit of bass but you really don’t. What you lose is some loose, fat bloat that can have a tendency to bleed into the other 2 frequencies. Whatever you do, (even though some will disagree) don’t swap out with the Lawton pads. If you do, you most certainly will lose the bass and your Purplehearts will now attain a more neutral sound instead of what it’s known for, dat bass!!! Not saying that’s a bad thing, it’s just not the same headphone anymore.

    I personally swapped out pads to the Ori’s so both played a big enough part together that I sold my TH-900 and kept these. Don’t get me wrong, the 900’s are better for sure. Nevertheless, I’m happy with the Purplehearts with spending the extra $100 I in mods which is easily 1/2 what you’d spend on the TH-900.

    But?.....Since you said you’d be willing to spend more money, you can also pick up a cherried out TH-900 for bout $800 max (maybe less) for the TH-900 mk1.
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
    DavidA likes this.
  9. CoFire
    From my memory (reading), ebony would have the best slam and subbass with least glare in treble. The PH is the most V shaped and will have more treble energy than the Mohagany and Ebony. If you like to listen at louder volumes, I'd consider the Ebony and then perform a driver only Lawton mod which which would help with the clarity (I think this goes for the THX00 regardless of wood but varies slightly due to wood resonance properties). The PH and a little less so the Mahogany can get fatiguing at higher volumes, primarily in the treble. I listen at lower volumes, but some songs have a way of making the volume creep up. New pads are a MUST imo and I have the ZMF Eikon, love them, but people highly regard the ZMF Ori as well. I've heard the Lawton pads are a no go and the Dekoni THX00 are not in the same league. ZMF are pricier but as the saying goes, cry once. I have the Alpha Pads too but I think they suck out too much of the mid range. Attenuators can be made from a manila folder or purchased from Dekoni. I have the Dekoni because I bought them long before people started making them and I guess I just wanted something ready to go and just wasn't creative enough at the time. I still want to make my own and compare actually. I've heard there can be reflections from the Dekoni attenuators because it's hard plastic and part of the edge is exposed to the driver but I've not tested this out nor do I hear it. I was gonna dampen the attenuator surface with felt but haven't gotten around to it. I almost bought new cups (Ebony or Rosewood are what I'm considering) to pursue the sound signature I think you are going for but I haven't done the Lawton driver only mod yet and as I understand it, this may have more impact than wood selection. I want to pursue this first. The PH more so than the Mohagany do have bass bleed into the lower mids which I hope the Lawton driver damping will address. These headphones are great for rap and EDM but I think with a little more clarity in the mids, it would help other genres, rock and alternative primarily. Bottomline, the are fun, fairly clear out of the gate with an ear pad problem with great alternatives available. Last note, you will have to buy some Pom Plates (ear pad mounts) for the new ear pads from Full Compass. Again the 3D printed options people are mentioning weren't available when I did all my mods.

    To keep people happy, I'm adding a paragraph. Good luck. If I did it all over, I'd get the Ebony or Rosewood but then again, I don't know if I can part with my Mahogany or PH, yeah, none of this makes any sense.
  10. VRacer-111
    You really need to get the Lawton dampening and replace the Dekoni attenuator rings with custom open C/crescent moon shaped attenuators on the PH. There is ZERO bass bleed or flabby anything on both my a Lawton dampened and custom attenuated PH with Jmoney pads and 'PS' with ZMF Ori suede pads. The Dekoni attenuators are part of the cause of the bloat...
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
  11. VRacer-111
    I'll give you two recommendations that AREN'T Fostex TH series cans if you really want to step up the bass experience. My recommendations would be the Focal Elex or a STAX Lambda setup. Have not heard the Elex, but currently just about finished demoing a borrowed Elear. More impressive bass than the TH series cans, not because of impact (which theTH-X00PH does better than most any other headphones) but basically everything else - the dynamics, extension, quickness and detail of the bass... the Elear has the best bass I've yet heard from a dynamic driver. The Elear just has some funky highs that are about the only negative of it, but are not a minor thing - basically really hurts the overall impression of it.The Elex fixes the highs but has slightly reduced lowend compared to the Elear. I'd take a slightly reduced lowend over troublesome highs. Lowend can be EQ'd well on them. And the STAX SR-L300LE when EQ'd simply has the best bass quality I've yet heard from a headphone... period. It's everything the Elear is but better and with no treble issues whatsoever.

    The TH-X00PH would be a good midway stepping stone to a higher level bass experience (both in sound and cost), but it absolutely does excell at impact and doesn't mess with the other frequencies or sound boomy at all once you dampen and pad attenuate it. It just lacks in dynamics, precision, detail, and speed of bass compared to the much more impressive Focal Elear and STAX Lambda series.
  12. loki993
    That's sort of exactly where I was heading. I was going to pick up a pair of these and then keep an eye out for a decent pair of elex when people inevitably start selling them once they have them for a bit.

    But them again there are quite a few people selling Elears at a decent price, there is the temptation to get overzealous and grab one of them.
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2018
  13. loki993
    Ok I just have to ask now does Lawton sell just the dampening or is it something that easily DIYed..because what Im seeing it "the Lawton" mod starts at 135 dollars, add 3 bills for a nice used set of PHs. Then I start throwing other stuff at it and Im getting to the point where Im pushing into the 500+ dollar range and some other headphones come into play.
  14. GenEricOne
    The DIY Tune-Up kit is $45 and easy to install as long as you have a 00 Phillips screwdriver (instructions). Tile near the top right advertising it as $45 from this link http://www.lawtonaudio.com/fostextune-up.html (page isn't totally clear).
    Richter Di likes this.
  15. VRacer-111
    Driver dampening only (you have to ask for driver dampening pieces only via email) will run about $30 shipped. Normal Tune-up D.I.Y. kit runs around $50 shipped...


    Don't ever bother with the Lawton Angle pads... absolutely ruin the TH-X00 sound.
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