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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. loki993
    Ok see I was looking and it seems I only could find the tune up with the pads, there wasn't a separate thing for just the dampening...that's a very busy site. Thats far more reasonable and doable.
  2. jsmiller58
    I just did the mod this weekend... I needed a 000 Philips screwdriver, not a 00 (or at least I needed to get a 000 screwdriver as the 00 was too big).

    A few other things. The mod is very easy to do. But be gentle as those little screws are very soft, and the heads seem easy to strip. Also, best to have a magnetized screwdriver... I did not and it was a PITA to maneuver the little screws.
  3. Richter Di
    Dekoni Audio Fostex TH900 Elite Hybrid arrived today.
    So @koover was right. The change is incredible easy.

    What wasn‘t easy: being honest that the Dekoni pads changed the headphones to the worse.

    It is important to mention that I only wanted to swap the pads as my ears start to hurt in the originial TH-X00 Ebony pad. Also I love to listen to music while lying in bed and the form of the original pads does not allow this.

    When I had put on the Dekoni pads I felt like a lot of the front oriented 3D sound was gone and also the bass had changed. So I inspected the original pads. closer.

    83DF4EF5-C416-4282-9CF2-7D2DFD5105F3.jpeg A1411E75-4342-41BA-9704-A08CA5EACAAC.jpeg

    As one can see clearly only a part of the sound of the speaker is allowed to get directly to ear. The rest is bouncing back building up some reflections.
    Plus, the „opening“ is not in the center but closer to the front, so further away from the thicker pad part.
    So I used a piece of placstic to try if this indeed is the reason for the difference in sound.
    After implementing this thin plastic piece in the headphone between the drivers and the pads, the more frontal presentation came back plus a lot of „boom“, maybe because the plastic was thin and non-absorbent.
    So I looked for a different material. As a Pilates teacher I have different ant-slide mats:

    So I cut the thinner one above.



    And istalled it inside the pad this time. The reasoning was that first of all it might be too thick to allow the pads to be attached to the white rings. Secondly the original pads have a much smaller pad „chamber“ and I thought that maybe reducing the Dekoni pad chamber could help.


    Not beautfiful but it works. Sound is back in front but without a big „boom“ like with the plastic.
    In general the sound with the Dekoni pads and this mod is a little bit smoother as before which is nice.
    So I will definelty give this combination a longer listening period.
    kukkurovaca, HungryPanda and DavidA like this.
  4. VRacer-111
    You might also try an open crescent moon shape attenuator instead of a full ring shape. It is placed in the rear of the pad, along the back half of your ear.


    I've yet to hear a Dekoni pad that sounds good or is a good improvement in comfort over the stock pads. ZMF Ori work REALLY well, both the sheepskin and suede versions, depends on if you want V or more neutral sound.
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2018
    Richter Di, Pahani and koover like this.
  5. Richter Di
    Seems I need to try these ZMF Ori pads.
    I would prefer a slight V, since I listen with low volumes. Which one would be the right one?

    Regarding the open crescent moon shape attenuator, is there somewhere a pdf with the measures?
    Which materials seem to work well?
  6. ScareDe2
    Hi everyone,

    how does the sound response of the X00 compares with a m40x? Is it dead neutral? Same frequency response? Asking this because Metal571 actually suggested the X00 as an upgrade for the M40x. I would like more feedback about the neutrality.
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2018
  7. Leopanda
    +1, we would like to have the measures :) I am thinking of getting ZMF ORI pad for my ebonies too.

    They are the most neutral of all three wood variants of TH-X00, but you can never call them neutral. They have a great bass impact and very "physical" sub-bass feeling. They are more then just an upgrade from entry-level headphones like an ath m40x, they are a whole another level of quality and engagement. If you have never had a pair of headphones of mid-fi level, you will be imediately blown away forever right after the first solo in your favourite blues-rock track.
  8. ScareDe2
    Thank you for this answer. But as for me, the only thing that can blow me away is neutrality. I listened to many hi-fi cans, all have their own technical achievement, but the music never seem to sound right. For example, the Utopia draw the listener attention on the nuances, K812 is spacious, LCD2 has rich mids, Grados have an "exciting" top region, etc... They are all sold and gone. So for me, neutrality comes first. Dead flat is the first thing I need.
  9. Richter Di
    So which are your cans today?
  10. gLer
    Then may I suggest you’re in the wrong thread :wink:

    Fostex is all about fun and energy and colour; you’re not going to find flat anywhere near this place.
  11. ScareDe2
    I use the M40x with sony v6 pads. I am waiting to receive my upgraded softer pads HP-EP.
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2018
  12. DavidA
    The headphone that many/most would consider "neutral" is the HD600 and they are not close to the M40x so I'd say that if you consider the M40x "neutral" then any Fostex TH series is not for you. As @gLer noted these THX00 and the family of TH series is more fun, colored and full of energy.
  13. Pahani
    Yeah, noone will accuse any of the TH-X00 variants of being neutral. I might suggest looking at HD600 or Stax.
  14. SilverEars
    Man, why are the cables so damn long!! This is one annoyance and the also plug being quarter inch, I'd prefer 3.5mm and just use an quarter inch adapter(so that I can use it with my DAP without an adapter). Other than that, I like the Ebony. I'm not all that familiar with closed-backs(or in this case, semi-open), and tried a few prior that just didn't get much close in performance to openbacks I generally use, until I tried the Ebony...

    I know these Fostex based headphones has been around awhile, and I didn't try any of them unit recently, and quite surprised how much I like them. Bass is quite interesting with the dynamic drivers on the semi-closed or cupped headphones. By the looks of it on Jude's graphs, the Ebony is more even response out of the bunch, and I prefer that as the treble doesn't get peaky, but good articulation with that bass. I enjoy the bass. I wouldn't consider it neutral in quantity, but it's not too much either(sounds pretty balanced across). Usually with cupped headphones, I expect mids bleed(degree to which depends on the warmth level), and I don't experience that with these. Pretty clear sounding.

    It's got a fun rumble in the low-end. I'm hearing the strength of dynamic drivers with these, especially the bass.

    For portable use, I drive it out of my Opus #2 DAP, and drives it pretty nicely. My desktop rig is slightly better, but these fit well for portable use(well, other than the cable).
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2018
  15. SilverEars
    I've been listening to this for the bass subs resonance. It's got that woofer sounds without being too intruding. :grimacing:

    jmills8 likes this.
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