Impressions Seattle meet Saturday January 25th (north Seattle) - revised forum category
Jan 25, 2020 at 9:43 PM Post #2 of 8

DecentLevi

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Hey guys just a brief shout out - I had a fantastic time and loved the vibe. Fine, friendly and insightful team and very high performing gear. I wish we had more time because everything seemed a bit rushed. A few initial standouts to me:

RJM Sapphire Class-A headphone amp. This medium-size (DIY?) solid state amp packed some serious fidelity clean, resolving sound with great slam to the drums. I kept switching back & forth between the HD-660S and Hifiman HE5-SE, IIRC. I also liked the Tubelab SET 45 amp but it seemed a bit more picky on headphone synergy. It had paired better with different headphones than the SS amp... though which ones seem a little fuzzy by memory. These are both from @itsikhefez and I think he said he's selling the SS amp.

For me this was THE PAIRING to beat:
Stax Lambda L300 "Limited edition" + HiFiMAN Jade II Electrostatic energizer.
Show stopper full & proper! Perhaps the best visceral impact I can remember in the hobby, like I'm on stage and one with the music, almost boundless soundstage. These were my limited run L300's from Head Amp that are said to be virtually identical as the L700's, and paired with the HifiMan energizer meant for its' Jade headphones, much better than with my Stax SRM-1 MKII energizer. Myself along with at least 2 other people who heard it actually agreed it beat the 'Baby Orpheus' (HE-60). Legendary synergy here. While I don't proclaim the L300 limiteds as 'superior' to the HE-60, it was just some immense synergy, full stop and something to brighten up the whole week!! :L3000:
I believe the energizer was part of @Brainiac9000 's rig?

A few photos - sorry for the crappy result.
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Jan 26, 2020 at 8:00 PM Post #4 of 8

DecentLevi

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I was also fairly impressed with that Ampsandsound Mogwai SE OTL amp. It was perhaps somewhat picky on synergy with headphones, but it did have three different outputs at varying current to choose from for the best match. I probably liked it better than my Euforia, though mine is the original V1 so things could change with their newer 2018 V2 or Euforia Anniversary Edition.
 
Jan 27, 2020 at 3:19 PM Post #6 of 8

DecentLevi

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Thanks. And the positive impression with the L300 limiteds, was that when it was on my long black energizer unit, or the HifiMan one next to the window? I'm actually surprised you would compliment the bass, as most including myself think it's a bit bass light. I've previously done one internal mod to improve the low end a little, and soon will swap with specific earpads to bring it into focus even more.
 
Jan 27, 2020 at 3:48 PM Post #7 of 8

carlman14

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My positive impression was on your system. I didn't listen to the HifiMan energizer long enough to form an opinion. As for the bass, there may be a couple reasons for that. I was listening at a much louder volume than my normal listening level, so that could have given me the perception of more bass than it would have at a lower level. Also, maybe the tube preamp you had hooked up helped the bass a little?
 
Jan 28, 2020 at 9:47 PM Post #8 of 8

itsikhefez

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A bit late but wanted to thank @DecentLevi for arranging this unique meet and everyone else who attended. @Brainiac9000 brought some serious gear ... really impressive!
I had a chance to listen to a wide variety of headphones I've been reading about for years on my 45 SET.
I really really enjoyed the ZMF Atticus (thanks @carlman14 for bringing those), the Sony MDR-Z1R, Focal Elex and HD660s.
I liked the 660s enough to order a pair that same day.

This was also the first time I heard an electrostatic and the airiness and openness really impressed me. Both on @DecentLevi system but in particular on the HIFIMAN energizer.. which I agree was one of the most realistic presentations I've experienced.
The meet went by really fast... in retrospect I should have spent more time listening than talking! (which was hard since everyone was super nice)
 

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