Headphones or Speakers
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David1961

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I know this is an old argument but  I choose headphones, for me not only do l seem to be more in touch with the music but l also get musical sensations speakers can't give me, i.e. l have a CD by Mike Oldfield called Crises, one of the tracks on that CD is called Crises which is about 20 minutes long, about 10 minutes into the song a musical instrument [ l think it's some kind of synthesizer ] starts from the left ear over the top of the head and into the right, and then dances around the head, l've listened to Crises through speakers and give me headphones anytime.
                                                                     Dave.
 
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Loevhagen

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A speaker systems takes much, much more work to set up and then there's the room acoustics / treatment that needs to be done proper. I've spent some time making my own listening room for speakers, and when done sufficiently; speakers can sound as good as headphones and better. But, most people do not implement speakers in their room to a sufficient degree. Hence, headphones is easier to acheive good sound quality.
 
Disclaimer: I'm not implying you personally haven't implemented speakers the way it should. My comment is more a general comment that many don't, and judge their speaker setup without proper implementation based on the actual room's artifacts.
 
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David1961

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Quote:
A speaker systems takes much, much more work to set up and then there's the room acoustics / treatment that needs to be done proper. I've spent some time making my own listening room for speakers, and when done sufficiently; speakers can sound as good as headphones and better. But, most people do not implement speakers in their room to a sufficient degree. Hence, headphones is easier to acheive good sound quality.
 
Disclaimer: I'm not implying you personally haven't implemented speakers the way it should. My comment is more a general comment that many don't, and judge their speaker setup without proper implementation based on the actual room's artifacts.


Hi Loevhagen,
The only speakers or speaker l have is positioned under my TV, it's a soundbar, l dare say there are speakers available which as you say when positioned in the right place will give similar effect to an headphone, but my headphones are Stax sr007mk1's so to get the same sound quality from a speaker system l think quite a lot of money would have to be spent, l'm not knocking speakers it's just IMO headphones are better partly because l feel l'm not disturbing anybody else.
 
 
 
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Quote:
Hi Loevhagen,
The only speakers or speaker l have is positioned under my TV, it's a soundbar, l dare say there are speakers available which as you say when positioned in the right place will give similar effect to an headphone, but my headphones are Stax sr007mk1's so to get the same sound quality from a speaker system l think quite a lot of money would have to be spent, l'm not knocking speakers it's just IMO headphones are better partly because l feel l'm not disturbing anybody else.

The Stax Omega 2 Mk1 is one of the best headphones ever made, so of course its going to make short work of any soundbar. I prefer my O2 to speakers because I can use them fully in my office, which is an acoustic disaster area and just not friendly to even the best studio monitors. I can also move around as much as I wish while getting work done, and I'm always right in the sweet spot as it were. Frankly I also like being that near to the top of what's technically possible with headphone performance. You can get pretty much to the absolute peak if you spend about $15K or so. That's a considerable sum for headphones of course, but getting near the peak with speakers means spending more like a half million dollars on equipment, and maybe even a new house.
 
I'm confident that no headphone will ever reach the likes of the Rockport Arrakis or Nola Grand Reference in sound, it's just not physically possible. And yes, if you have the space, that same $15K can get you a seriously good speaker rig. For me though, I'm quite happy with my O2.
 
By the way David, I see in your profile that you're using an SRM-007t. You're gonna want to check out a Blue Hawaii.
 
 
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I love both.  My headphone rig gets about 70% of my listening time, just out of convenience.
 
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I have a nice main system in my great room that I listen to speakers ~80% of the time. In my office system I listen to headphones ~70%.
 
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David1961

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Quote:
The Stax Omega 2 Mk1 is one of the best headphones ever made, so of course its going to make short work of any soundbar. I prefer my O2 to speakers because I can use them fully in my office, which is an acoustic disaster area and just not friendly to even the best studio monitors. I can also move around as much as I wish while getting work done, and I'm always right in the sweet spot as it were. Frankly I also like being that near to the top of what's technically possible with headphone performance. You can get pretty much to the absolute peak if you spend about $15K or so. That's a considerable sum for headphones of course, but getting near the peak with speakers means spending more like a half million dollars on equipment, and maybe even a new house.
 
I'm confident that no headphone will ever reach the likes of the Rockport Arrakis or Nola Grand Reference in sound, it's just not physically possible. And yes, if you have the space, that same $15K can get you a seriously good speaker rig. For me though, I'm quite happy with my O2.
 
By the way David, I see in your profile that you're using an SRM-007t. You're gonna want to check out a Blue Hawaii.
 

Hi DaveBSC,
Regarding the BHSE, l placed an order for one in March, l've gone for the silver faceplate with black rings around the base of the tubes, l'm also going to be getting the sr009's, but next year when my long term savings plan matures l'm getting the Esoteric K-01, l think when that happens l'll be an even more happy Head-fier.
                                                                                            Dave.
 
 
 
 
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Quote:
Hi DaveBSC,
Regarding the BHSE, l placed an order for one in March, l've gone for the silver faceplate with black rings around the base of the tubes, l'm also going to be getting the sr009's, but next year when my long term savings plan matures l'm getting the Esoteric K-01, l think when that happens l'll be an even more happy Head-fier.
                                                                                            Dave.
 
 
Well you've hit it there, speaking of the peak of headphone performance - that's it. I plan to stick with the O2 and KGSSHV, though eventually I might take a look at the 009.
 
 
 
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Quote:
 
Well you've hit it there, speaking of the peak of headphone performance - that's it. I plan to stick with the O2 and KGSSHV, though eventually I might take a look at the 009.
 
 

Regarding Amps, at the moment l've got the SRM 007t, Grace m902, and Silver Pico Slim, to help get the K-01 l'm part exchanging all my audio equipment apart from my portable stuff, so that means l'm also using my Esoteric x-03se and  sr007's as part exchange but l'm getting as l say the K-01 and the sr009's instead so l think it'll be worth it.
 
                                                                           David.
 
 
 
 
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While my thought about listening to music via headphones hasn't changed, sometime in the future l've decided on getting a top quality speaker system, the speakers l heard at Jack Lawson's place The Music Room made me decide that way, those speakers were Tannoy  Westminster Royal se and while they sounded incredible, Jack suggested to me the Tannoy Kensington se would be more suitable for my small size room, he said the Westminster Royal se only sound their best in large rooms, he also told me the Kensingtons in a small room sounded very similar to the Westminster Royal in a large one, he said aswell Tannoy speakers sound best when driven by Esoteric audio equipment, so with that in mind when l've got the finances to get the speakers l'll also get an Esoteric amp, l know l said only headphones were for me, but listening to Jack's speaker system has changed that thought somewhat.
 
                                                                                          Dave.
 
                                                                                    
 
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I use both. Speakers get about 80% of the listening these days, though. I prefer the soundstage and real bass.
 
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Quote:
While my thought about listening to music via headphones hasn't changed, sometime in the future l've decided on getting a top quality speaker system, the speakers l heard at Jack Lawson's place The Music Room made me decide that way, those speakers were Tannoy  Westminster Royal se and while they sounded incredible, Jack suggested to me the Tannoy Kensington se would be more suitable for my small size room, he said the Westminster Royal se only sound their best in large rooms, he also told me the Kensingtons in a small room sounded very similar to the Westminster Royal in a large one, he said aswell Tannoy speakers sound best when driven by Esoteric audio equipment, so with that in mind when l've got the finances to get the speakers l'll also get an Esoteric amp, l know l said only headphones were for me, but listening to Jack's speaker system has changed that thought somewhat.

What other speakers have you heard? The concentric full-range horn idea is an interesting one, but these things aren't exactly new designs. The drivers in Vienna's The Music and The Kiss for example are considerably more advanced, and have basically solved the issue that has always plagued concentric drivers - the "cupped hands" effect of the mid or woofer cone acting as an unwanted waveguide. There are other SOTA concentric designs as well like TAD's CR-1. Admittedly not cheap, but I have to imagine that it would outperform something designed 30+ years ago.
 
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Quote:
What other speakers have you heard? The concentric full-range horn idea is an interesting one, but these things aren't exactly new designs. The drivers in Vienna's The Music and The Kiss for example are considerably more advanced, and have basically solved the issue that has always plagued concentric drivers - the "cupped hands" effect of the mid or woofer cone acting as an unwanted waveguide. There are other SOTA concentric designs as well like TAD's CR-1. Admittedly not cheap, but I have to imagine that it would outperform something designed 30+ years ago.

Hi DaveBSC,
The only high end speakers l've ever heard were the Tannoy Westminster Royal se's, l've never heard any others, and l'm totally naive when it come knowing about speaker technology, although after receiving a Tannoy brochure from Jack l did learn a little about the concentric idea, but apart from that l know nothing,  l suppose l could learn more about how speakers work but l'd sooner listen to them, regarding the TAD CR-1 speakers, because my focus has only been on headphones l've never heard of them, but l have to say they are very nice looking speakers, the only problem is, l've seen them priced at $37000, if that's how much they are then that's way out of my price range, although l'd like to Thank you DaveBSC for mentioning about them, the Tannoy Kensington se's aren't cheap at £7000 each which is why if l wanted them it would take about two years to save the money, but if you know of any other speakers around £7000's that are very good sounding and would let me know, it would be much appreciated.
 
                                                                                David.
 
 
 
 
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Why not just listen to open-air headphones and speakers at the same time  like I do?

 
I get the headphone feeling and sub-woofer feeling all at once.
 
 
 
 
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David1961

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Quote:
Why not just listen to open-air headphones and speakers at the same time  like I do?

 
I get the headphone feeling and sub-woofer feeling all at once.
 
 
 


Sorry, it sounds intriguing but unpractical, but when eventually l get my new headphone and speaker system l may give it a try.
 
 
 
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