LCD-X vs HD800s vs HEDDphone - portable reference mastering
Nov 23, 2022 at 2:18 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 17

oaks2thepokes

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LCD-X (or MM500) vs HD800s vs HEDDphone

Hi, please can someone advise which of these headphones are best suited for portable reference mastering when out of the studio to get enough information (clarity, freq response and transient speed) to work on and make decisions effectively.

Running unbalanced from an RME ADI-2 Pro FS BE or ADI-2 FS.

Thank you.
 
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Nov 24, 2022 at 10:55 AM Post #6 of 17

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Just a heads up on the HEDDphone: if you're working for hours, it may not be the choice for you. A handful of people find it comfortable, but most people say the weight and narrow headband are an ergonomic problem.

I did watch a video review on YouTube from a mastering perspective that said that in some ways it's tough to master on due to the unusually wide soundstage, but that's someone else's opinion.
 
Nov 24, 2022 at 10:59 AM Post #7 of 17

gimmeheadroom

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The RME does not do a great job with the 800s (neither the 800 nor the 800 S). On the other hand they drive my LCD-2C superbly and my 3F surprisingly well. So based on your choices and budget LCD-X seems like the right choice.
 
Nov 24, 2022 at 3:28 PM Post #9 of 17

DigitalJust

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Nov 24, 2022 at 3:38 PM Post #11 of 17

DigitalJust

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Thank you. I have sonarworks. I’m in the UK price over here is around £1,000.
Id still say LcD-x. I'm a mastering engineer. Sonarworks sounds good. I run it with a little 2.5 db bass boost.

Also...the lcd-x are built like tanks. Parts are replaceable too. Before the lcd-5...the mix and mastering engineers who do work on headphones, a lot were using the lcd-x for a reason. A lot still are.

Go for it. If you are working in audio and traveling around, the lcd-x just fits the bill better. The heddphone is uncomfy and the hd800 has too many exposed parts to be a travel headphone
 
Nov 24, 2022 at 4:23 PM Post #12 of 17

oaks2thepokes

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Id still say LcD-x. I'm a mastering engineer. Sonarworks sounds good. I run it with a little 2.5 db bass boost.

Also...the lcd-x are built like tanks. Parts are replaceable too. Before the lcd-5...the mix and mastering engineers who do work on headphones, a lot were using the lcd-x for a reason. A lot still are.

Go for it. If you are working in audio and traveling around, the lcd-x just fits the bill better. The heddphone is uncomfy and the hd800 has too many exposed parts to be a travel headphone
Thank you. This was my gut too. Is the ADI-2 FS (non-pro) a good combo for this? any other DAC/Amp options you'd recommend above the ADI for the price point?
 
Nov 24, 2022 at 4:33 PM Post #13 of 17

DigitalJust

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Thank you. This was my gut too. Is the ADI-2 FS (non-pro) a good combo for this? any other DAC/Amp options you'd recommend above the ADI for the price point?
Depends on what you need routing wise. It will do the trick. Monitor at a consistent level and don't change your setup too often.

For a portable setup..one thing that is often missing is a monitor controller. Sonnox has a software called listenhub that is just a Monitor section. Does 6 db volume steps, standard mutes and dims, has listen by frequency.

Ive never used it myself, but the mastering engineer glenn schick is using lcd5 and an ifi diablo as his portable rig. If you need the outputs to go to some monitor speakers, then go for something more like the rme.

As far as better dacs, it really depends on your budget and how compact you need your portable rig. That lcd5 and ifu Diablo combo glenn schick uses for instance...it all fits in a briefcase with a small cube computer.
 
Nov 24, 2022 at 4:41 PM Post #14 of 17

oaks2thepokes

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Depends on what you need routing wise. It will do the trick. Monitor at a consistent level and don't change your setup too often.

For a portable setup..one thing that is often missing is a monitor controller. Sonnox has a software called listenhub that is just a Monitor section. Does 6 db volume steps, standard mutes and dims, has listen by frequency.

Ive never used it myself, but the mastering engineer glenn schick is using lcd5 and an ifi diablo as his portable rig. If you need the outputs to go to some monitor speakers, then go for something more like the rme.

As far as better dacs, it really depends on your budget and how compact you need your portable rig. That lcd5 and ifu Diablo combo glenn schick uses for instance...it all fits in a briefcase with a small cube computer.
Ok the Diablo looks interesting. I'm looking at the RME ADI-2 and the Grace Design M900 (https://gracedesign.com/products/monitor-controllers/m900) at the moment. Size is a factor, but RME size is fine, although for high power it needs a power adaptor. The DAC and amp in it is really nice though.

EDIT: oh they're the guys that do the ZEN units! Nice.
 
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Nov 24, 2022 at 4:44 PM Post #15 of 17

DigitalJust

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Ok the Diablo looks interesting. I'm looking at the RME ADI-2 and the Grace Design M900 (https://gracedesign.com/products/monitor-controllers/m900) at the moment. Size is a factor, but RME size is fine, although for high power it needs a pawer adaptor. The DAC and amp in it is really nice though.
If size is fine, go for it. The next tier of dacs for mastering are going to be rack unit size or something like the lynxx hilo. The rme also gives you some outputs where even if you are mastering mostly on headphones, can still reference on some monitors if you purchase down the road.
 

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