Cool, I'll try that 1st. Thank you. Any idea about that loose cap? I'm trying to determine if it's a sign to replace it. Also, I was asking the community if I should reduce pot impedance while I'm at it. That's why I detailed the issue is with 250 ohm cans, not just ask about theory. I hope those who have gone through this experimentation already could perhaps save me a few hours and expense of my aimless troubleshooting (admittedly breaking things as I go). I wish I had the time and cash to just try whatever comes to mind, not there right now. Thank you, anybody who can help.