Philips Fidelio X2?!
Dec 17, 2014 at 11:31 PM Post #1,741 of 15,018

rabbitsfoot

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Can anyone chime on on the differences between the x1 and x2? Are they subtle or noticeable? Like in a blond test could you pick the difference? How much more bass impact/slam/presence does the x1 have and how bad is the grainy lower treble?

 
There's a noticeable difference as has been discussed. I think the bass is pretty close in impact/slam/presence. The X2 didn't sound to me as if the bass was reduced much but the graphs indicate a bit less level. The X2 was maybe a bit more articulate-both have great bass-definitely not neutral which I find not realistic with most modern music. I find the bass as near perfect in the above attributes with both phones. I think the biggest differences occur in the mids-where the X2 is leaner and the treble-where the X2 is more accentuated. I think I preferred the treble tuning of the X1 as I thought it a bit more neutral and never offensive though still articulate and revealing.I think I'm in the minority on this preference though. Bear in mind our different music preferences as well as up stream components could change these observations. One of the things that Baycode has mentioned sometimes overlooked: the sound field presentation- both of these phones are so immersive that one seems to be able to really hear into the performance-just a really great job Philips. I don't have the X1 and X2 any longer and didn't have them at the same time so this is from memory and recollection. We all seem to hear a little different-and to different genres of music so this must be taken with a grain of salt and is only my opinion and observations.
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 1:11 AM Post #1,742 of 15,018

dryvadeum

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The following are my impressions. I am not a professional so take everything with a grain of salt.


I have in my possession both the X1 and X2.
The first thing I did after getting the X2 is comapre the two aesthetically.
The black on black looks really sleek. In terms of looks X2 wins this one.
I tested the swivel on each and the X1 has noticeably more. The cups can be moved around significantly more.
Observing the headband one will notice that the X2 has a higher peak. It is more "bent".  

Looks: X2 wins


Putting them on is where you start feeling differences. The peak and the more limited swivel impact the comfort.
They "dig in" below my ears a little bit. Now I may be spoiled by the X1s, but these are not as comfortable. Period. No discussion about this one for me. 

Comfort: X1 wins

Now for the interesting part; the sound.
Going forward I want to make a disclaimer: the differences aren't large, I am simply mentioning them because they exist.

Anyway, I did an A/B test on these. 
Personally, I like to feel like I'm surrounded by the sound when I'm using headphones.
When I first got the X1, I was amazed by the depth. It felt like they could reproduce sounds to fill the room I was in.
When I tested the X2, this is where I found the largest difference between the two. The X1 made me feel like I was in a room, the X2 made it feel
like I was in the same room but without a roof. This is probably (imo) where the "darker" vs "brighter" arguments come from. 
The X2 exposed the faults in the X1 that I hadn't realized before. To me, it just feels like the X2s are "airier". There seems a smidge more space between instruments.

The other aspect I've read about is the seeming lack of bass in the X2. In my opinion, this is not true. I still feel the kick without issue.
I think the reason people see the X2 as less bassy is because of the difference highlighted before (the closed room vs open roof room).

Purely soundwise, I'll have to hand it off to the X2, but BARELY.
For instrumental music, I'd go with X2. Drums feel fantastic. For music more along the lines of dubstep/hip-hop, I'd go with X1.

It feels like I'm beating a dead horse but I want to emphasize one more time that the differences are minimal (soundwise).

So what should you do? 
I would go for the X2. My main reasons are the slightly more airier sound and the fact that they have replaceable pads.
I plan on keeping these cans for a LONG time, and replaceable pads were a must for holding on to these.
X1 is still a fantastic choice. It is a clear winner to me for comfort. 

But make your own choice, this was just my two bits. Sorry if repeated myself too many times.




EDIT: 
Saw a post about blind tests. Yes I could probably tell which ones were which.

Second, I ran both through a FiiO E7.


Thanks for that comparison. Tyll mentions that the X1s have a graininess in the lower treble that can sound harsh or unnatural. How noticeable is that flaw?
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 1:29 AM Post #1,743 of 15,018
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There are similarities, but the difference between the X1 and X2 are clearly noticeable. The X1 is quite a bit warmer, and the looseness in the bass is evident compared to the X2. The X2 isn't lacking in bass, but there is certainly more ominpresence in the X1.

The X2 to me, is clearly the better headphone. I like my bass like anyone else, and I don't feel the X2 is lacking.
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 2:03 AM Post #1,744 of 15,018

dryvadeum

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There are similarities, but the difference between the X1 and X2 are clearly noticeable. The X1 is quite a bit warmer, and the looseness in the bass is evident compared to the X2. The X2 isn't lacking in bass, but there is certainly more ominpresence in the X1.

The X2 to me, is clearly the better headphone. I like my bass like anyone else, and I don't feel the X2 is lacking.


Thanks. That helps to clarify things a bit. I'm on the fence about buying the X2 due to all the rave reviews or buying another set of Denon D5000s cos I know I love their bass and overall richness to the sound.

I don't expect the X2 to have anywhere near the bass of the Denons but do they share that nice rich, warm, somewhat romanticised sound?
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 2:33 AM Post #1,745 of 15,018

zazex

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Thanks. That helps to clarify things a bit. I'm on the fence about buying the X2 due to all the rave reviews or buying another set of Denon D5000s cos I know I love their bass and overall richness to the sound.

I don't expect the X2 to have anywhere near the bass of the Denons but do they share that nice rich, warm, somewhat romanticised sound?

 
Are you sure you can get another set of Denon 5000's?
(Theyve been OOP for pretty long while; over a year IIRC)
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 4:43 AM Post #1,746 of 15,018

dryvadeum

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Hmm..There's a like new pair of X1s up for sale in Aust for $280. The X2s would cost about $115 more off Amazon.

Does the X2s improvement in sound over the X1 warrant me spending an extra $115?
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 7:39 AM Post #1,747 of 15,018

wanderingsounds

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MBP 2012 has high output impedance and sounds too warm to my ears. I just don't like it but yummy sound lovers might.
 
I have not personally heard LH Geek Out but it probably sounds a bit "digital"? I know it has a Sabre dac inside, and Sabre dacs are known for dry and clinical sound signature (only can be remedied by a musical amp). I heard Resonessence Herus and didn't like it, for instance. Too digital and clinical sound. Explorer2 on the other hand, sounds more natural and organic, more musical. Some like dry and detailed sound, some prefer musical sound like me. I prefer music similar to live performance over dry studio mastering/mixing sound.


Can you describe the impact of the Explorer2 on the X2's bass and sub-bass? Also, does it retain the balanced sound of the X2?
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 7:59 AM Post #1,748 of 15,018

rabbitsfoot

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Thanks. That helps to clarify things a bit. I'm on the fence about buying the X2 due to all the rave reviews or buying another set of Denon D5000s cos I know I love their bass and overall richness to the sound.

I don't expect the X2 to have anywhere near the bass of the Denons but do they share that nice rich, warm, somewhat romanticised sound?


Don't know how the D5000 bass compared with the D2000 I had, but I thought that while the bass was good in range and quality-the quantity was a bit overblown with much material. And I do like bass. There was also a treble peak that, while not too offensive, just drew attention to itself. The X1-X2 bass have just the right amount of bass quantity (X1 maybe a bit more)-elevated but more natural-I never felt like it was too much or too little. The bass quality is excellent and the extension very good. Listening to music, I always felt the bass was the most defining attribute of these phones along with the sound field presentation. Very, Very well done. Get the X1 first-on sale/used at a great price and see what you think. If you like what you hear but want a bit leaner midrange and more open top end, sell em and buy the X2's. If not, keep the X1's
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 8:27 AM Post #1,749 of 15,018

dryvadeum

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Don't know how the D5000 bass compared with the D2000 I had, but I thought that while the bass was good in range and quality-the quantity was a bit overblown with much material. And I do like bass. There was also a treble peak that, while not too offensive, just drew attention to itself. The X1-X2 bass have just the right amount of bass quantity (X1 maybe a bit more)-elevated but more natural-I never felt like it was too much or too little. The bass quality is excellent and the extension very good. Listening to music, I always felt the bass was the most defining attribute of these phones along with the sound field presentation. Very, Very well done. Get the X1 first-on sale/used at a great price and see what you think. If you like what you hear but want a bit leaner midrange and more open top end, sell em and buy the X2's. If not, keep the X1's


Thanks for your insight. Are the X1/X2s different enough to warrant owning both? Kinda like the HD600/HD650?

Just want to make sure as i be made too many blind purchases and regretted it.
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 8:38 AM Post #1,750 of 15,018

Nijjion

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Second, I ran both through a FiiO E7.

 
On the subject of a blind test... Can you tell the difference with an amp or not? I'm guessing it would be hard to get the volume similar.
 
Though I'm wondering about if it gives better base to the X2's? (I'm not 100% sure but some people say amps can improve bass/treble ect), is this true for the X2?
 
If I'm plugging it into a soundblaster Z or a Xonar soundcard would I miss an amp or not really is what I'm trying to get my head around.
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 8:43 AM Post #1,751 of 15,018

Sundown

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On the subject of a blind test... Can you tell the difference with an amp or not? I'm guessing it would be hard to get the volume similar.
 
Though I'm wondering about if it gives better base to the X2's? (I'm not 100% sure but some people say amps can improve bass/treble ect), is this true for the X2?
 
If I'm plugging it into a soundblaster Z or a Xonar soundcard would I miss an amp or not really is what I'm trying to get my head around.

I have mine plugged into a claro halo soundcard and don't go over volume 20. A non amped soundcard will be good enough.
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 9:03 AM Post #1,753 of 15,018

rabbitsfoot

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Thanks for your insight. Are the X1/X2s different enough to warrant owning both? Kinda like the HD600/HD650?

Just want to make sure as i be made too many blind purchases and regretted it.


   I'm not sure on this. You know we all hear a little differently-have different preferences, and I think you'd be best to check out the 'house sound' first and see if this fits with your preferences. I hear you on the 'blind regrets'-best to get a good deal on a used (amazon has some great deals with easy returns if it's not to your liking) set and give em a listen.
 
Dec 18, 2014 at 9:49 AM Post #1,755 of 15,018

obsidyen

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Can you describe the impact of the Explorer2 on the X2's bass and sub-bass? Also, does it retain the balanced sound of the X2?

 
Bass has more impact... It sounds stronger and more present. Kick drums especially.It's like Explorer2 has taken off a thin veil from the sound while also making it smoother and more musical.
 
What's great though is stereo separation improved tremendously. I'm starting to believe channel imbalances some owners have experienced might be due to the amp/dac they use. It's known mobile phones', tablets' and laptops' stereo crosstalk is really high compared to dedicated dac/amps. And it's even bad in some low quality amp/dacs. Explorer2 is great in that regard.
 

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