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KOSS ESP-950 Thread

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by milosz, Nov 22, 2011.
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  1. ratboi
    FWIW, I bought mine on what turned out to be a very extended Black Friday sale back in 2016, for 35% off. A lot of speculation followed, that they would repeat that sale or something like it - or better. In 2017, they did NOT repeat that sale. Koss have stuck to basically full price since early 2017. I'm willing to stand corrected, but I believe any exceptions were few and far between. I think there was a 25% sale on "all" Koss, but the ESP-950 was excluded when I checked.

    I'm guessing this will be Koss' grand gesture for 2018, and they will be looking to the response to see if they even want to continue manufacture of these earspeakers. The Massdrop price is special, in my estimation. The improved pads are wonderful, they DO include the extension cable, and they MAY even be making available an optional cable to connect to a Pro Bias Stax-style electrostatic earspeaker amplifier. Heck, they even make these things in the CONUS.

    They've already sold 303 (nope-304...), so I wouldn't wait to long to get in on the fun. Just sayin'...
  2. darinf
    FYI, they definitely do NOT include the 5-pin headphone extension cable in the Massdrop 95X.


    • ESP/95X electrostatic headphones
    • E/90X electrostatic energizer
    • 110V or 220V AC adapter (add plug adapter for your country’s outlet)
    • 3 ft (0.9 m) RCA-to-RCA cable
    • 2 ft (0.6 m) 3.5mm–to-3.5mm cable
    • Koss's limited lifetime warranty (see warranty card)
    (Who knows if they change their minds by Feb. though. I think the extension cable is invaluable given the short 4ft. hard wired existing cable.)
    i also don't think you can buy the extension cable separately anymore. If anyone has success ordering an extension cable, please let me know. I haven't been able to buy them from Koss for many months and I am a Koss dealer.
    timb5881 likes this.
  3. ratboi
    I got in the discussion before the drop started, and _Massdrop_ floated the idea of including a 5-pin adapter cable as an option. I responded that I supported the idea, it was endorsed multiple times. It may or may not happen.

    They changed their listing, and I'm upset by this. Originally, it read:

    "Cable: Straight, dual entry, 4 ft (1.2 m) with 6 ft (1.8 m) extension"

    Now, it just reads:

    "Cable: Straight, dual entry, 4 ft (1.2 m)"

    You are right, I've kept my extension cord as part of the connection from day 1. That should be shouted at them in their discussion. The extension needs to be included.

    Well, I bought a pair of them after an email exchange in early February of this year. As was suggested in this group, I needed to contact them by phone. I believe I paid $20 per 6 ft cable. It is not listed as an accessory, the phone call was necessary. Many months would describe the time since February and now. That would be suckage. Maybe my cables are worth more now... :)
  4. illram
    Massdrop has sold the 950 before but it was the retail version. I think it was like $600. (Which is still a good deal.) That was how I got mine.

    Given this run was fairly successful I wouldn't be surprised to see this again, but who knows when.
  5. ratboi
    No mention of it by the Massdrop folks, thanks for correcting my mistake.

    EDIT 1 - Total DUH, it was only 9.5 months ago, and went for $599.95. I found my comments in the threads. Oh the horror...

    Just asked CEE_TEE where the f??? the extension cable went in their product description. Truly not cool if they don't include it, as it seems they might be trying to do.

    EDIT 2 - he responded, wrote "Yes, we are working on this preliminary change and in-progress, not necessarily final. We're working to resolve this and will update you as soon as we can... " Grrr...

    They've already got about 306 of the run of 360 committed, and have added an option for 220 or 120V for the wall wart to accommodate international customers. If they stick to making this drop 'wart(squeal)-free', this could be really good for Massdrop AND Koss. We shall see...
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2018
    barondla and trellus like this.
  6. fpantalone
    Yep ... I bought mine from Massdrop last November (ALL accessories included) for $600. Massdrop has not claimed that the new pads are actually 'Vesper' pads. They could have sourced them anywhere, and not be Vesper quality. Has anyone asked them if they are Vesper's?? Also ... I bought (separately) the 220V bit for $20 from Koss.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2018
  7. ratboi
    Nothing I read gave me the impression they were including VA pads. More like Dekoni maybe - "thicker, more comfortable foam wrapped in velour" - is how they describe the new pads. All I ever really wanted over the stock pads was maybe 1/4 of an inch more thickness. The darn things are so close otherwise, they very nearly brush my 'bat-like' ears. The Vesper are probably too tall, and likely cause the imaging problems complained of by VRacer111 because of it.
  8. kid vic
    They probably won't address the squeal, I really doubt Koss is going to do much if any changes to the ESP950 aside from paint.
    I had thought that the Elex would become a fixture but as of yet no indication of that so you may be right about that too.
  9. illram
    They don't look like the vesper hybrid pads, which are part leather and part alcantara. These look all velour.

    I went ahead and ordered the vesper pads yesterday (thanks Darin!), this new drop piqued my interest in finally trying them out.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2018
  10. darinf
    Hi @illram , yes, thank you for your order!
    It's interesting that since the Massdrop ESP-95X drop went live, I have had a bump in Vesper pad sales. I know it's not from people who are getting their 95X's in Feb of next year. I guess the drop got existing ESP-950 owners to think about upgrading their pads.
    Hopefully in Feb once all 300 people get their ESP-95X's, some of them will want Vesper pads too. (We'll have to wait and see what the velour pads are like though.)
  11. ratboi
    DF has settled on the memory foam variant, I got mine when it was being deprecated so mine are "fast foam" - whatever the freak _that_ is... The things are comfortable as all heck. Hoping you don't have 'dumbo' ears that don't fit in the opening!
  12. barondla
    Heard the 950 few years ago on a Stax amp. Enjoyed it a lot. Preferred them to the Sennheiser HD800 and Focal Utopia at the same meet. Saw the Massdrop and couldn't resist. Looking forward to Feb. 2019.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2018
  13. Den Sol
    I ordered one as well. Hopefully I wouldn’t need to get HD800 and Utopia once I get this:).
    barondla likes this.
  14. Lurker0918
    Yes I did read the description and the discussion. One of the posters mentioned "I bought a Koss ESP/950 system from Thanksgiving drop last year. It sounds amazing! Thank you, Massdrop! I wonder if Massdrop could sell the new memory form velour pads separately. For previous ESP/950 user, the new pads looks so comfortable and attractive."

    That was why I was asking. thank you.
  15. ratboi
    My apologies for being so snarky. Technically this _is_ a first, where it is a Massdrop x model and not just selling the ESP-950, but I'd be dodging my responsibility for being (yep...) an ass once more by hiding behind that. Don't take my response as typical of the group, or even (most of the time...) typical of me.

    Again, my apologies. Welcome to the group. Really... 8-/
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2018
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