Pioneer's First Hi-End Headphones: SE-Master 1
Mar 23, 2021 at 8:05 AM Post #1,921 of 1,979

Benny-x

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Yeah, some stock cables are really bad and really hamper the sound. The stock cable on the SE-Master1 isn’t that bad, but I‘m wondering if anyone is using an aftermarket cable. I normally pair my headphones with silver cables because I like details and clarity. Based on what I’m hearing, I’m think that a good cooper cable might be a better choice. Interested in knowing what cable everyone is using.
I think back, just after they came out in 2014/2015, there were a couple custom cable shops that made SEM1 ones, but I haven't seen any in at least the past 3 years. They're so limited as well that I guess the sunset of owners that would also chase an aftermarket cable are small too.

I'm looking forward to trying out a few when I get my back in the coming months.

I'm also looking forward to that other driver replacement feedback vs. original. I'm praying there's no difference, I'm too OCD for that :frowning2:
 
Mar 31, 2021 at 12:35 AM Post #1,922 of 1,979

mrtim6

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Hi Benny the SEM1 cable hasn’t arrived yet the one that came with my repaired headphones was damage. They had to order from Japan, so I’m still waiting too. I’ll update the tread once I’ve given them some headtime.
 
May 31, 2021 at 1:07 AM Post #1,924 of 1,979

Benny-x

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Hi Benny the SEM1 cable hasn’t arrived yet the one that came with my repaired headphones was damage. They had to order from Japan, so I’m still waiting too. I’ll update the tread once I’ve given them some headtime.
Hey mrtim, any luck with the replacement cable yet? I'm still wondering what your impressions are with those new drivers :)
 
Jun 19, 2021 at 6:37 AM Post #1,926 of 1,979

Dynamo5561

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Hey there, just joind the club:

1624098499448.png


First impressions:

  • Very neutral with some treble energy, but nothing sibilant. Actually I prefer some treble energy. Was worried about it when I saw the FR chart but it is really moderate. In comparison to the TH900 it has less treble.
  • Bass is present, but could be a tad more precise, bleeds a tiny bit into the mids
  • Soundstage is really wide
  • Due to the treble peak it does not have the most natural timbre
  • Detail retrieval is good, but there is better out there
  • Quite full sounding
Over all I think it is a really good headphone, especially considering what I have heared in the > 1K€ price range. A very good all rounder. No house sound or anything that someone can dislike, very agreeable sound presentation. Not sure if I will keep it, as my A1266 outperforms it in every aspect. But definitely a very honorable headphone. As someone stated here in the thead, maybe it did not get the most recognition as it is done by Pioneer and in a very limited number.

Cheers
 
Jun 19, 2021 at 7:08 AM Post #1,927 of 1,979

Slim1970

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Hey there, just joind the club:

1624098499448.png

First impressions:

  • Very neutral with some treble energy, but nothing sibilant. Actually I prefer some treble energy. Was worried about it when I saw the FR chart but it is really moderate. In comparison to the TH900 it has less treble.
  • Bass is present, but could be a tad more precise, bleeds a tiny bit into the mids
  • Soundstage is really wide
  • Due to the treble peak it does not have the most natural timbre
  • Detail retrieval is good, but there is better out there
  • Quite full sounding
Over all I think it is a really good headphone, especially considering what I have heared in the > 1K€ price range. A very good all rounder. No house sound or anything that someone can dislike, very agreeable sound presentation. Not sure if I will keep it, as my A1266 outperforms it in every aspect. But definitely a very honorable headphone. As someone stated here in the thead, maybe it did not get the most recognition as it is done by Pioneer and in a very limited number.

Cheers
Similar thoughts as mine about the SE-Master1’s being a great all around headphone. It flew under the radar when announced, but boy is it a good headphone. It really does nothing wrong and I think the sound is very balanced.

You should take advantage of the PEQ feature on the RME and fix the quibbles you find with the SE-Master1’s. I’m using a Loki and the RME has a much better EQ. I have the AB-1266 TC’s as well and the SE-Master1 is a great alternative to it. Not many headphones can compete with the TC’s. When you take that into account the SE-Master1’s are a lot better sounding that a good deal of headphones out right now.
 
Jun 19, 2021 at 8:19 AM Post #1,928 of 1,979

Dynamo5561

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Similar thoughts as mine about the SE-Master1’s being a great all around headphone. It flew under the radar when announced, but boy is it a good headphone. It really does nothing wrong and I think the sound is very balanced.

You should take advantage of the PEQ feature on the RME and fix the quibbles you find with the SE-Master1’s. I’m using a Loki and the RME has a much better EQ. I have the AB-1266 TC’s as well and the SE-Master1 is a great alternative to it. Not many headphones can compete with the TC’s. When you take that into account the SE-Master1’s are a lot better sounding that a good deal of headphones out right now.

Totally agree. I tested so many headphones, finally settled on the A1266. But the Era-1 and the SEM1 were for me really outstanding headphones in their respective price range which I would highly recommend to friends. They do everything right which I don't find on many other headphones. I see the Susvara as a very good complement to the A1266 therefore I will sell the SEM1 and save up for the Susvara :dt880smile:
 
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Jun 19, 2021 at 9:13 AM Post #1,929 of 1,979

Slim1970

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Totally agree. I tested so many headphones, finally settled on the A1266. But the Era-1 and the SEM1 were for me really outstanding headphones in their respective price range which I would highly recommend to friends. They do everything right which I don't find on many other headphones. I see the Susvara as a very good complement to the A1266 therefore I will sell the SEM1 and save up for the Susvara :dt880smile:
I see in your signature you use to own the Susvara’s. You’re giving them another shot?
 
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Jul 11, 2021 at 10:12 PM Post #1,931 of 1,979

mrtim6

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Just a quick update guys, I’m listening to JRiver on Win 10 into RME ADI Pro FS2 (older generation). In balance mode. Wow these headphones have been missed. Just so well balanced for a dynamic driver. I replaced the headband, drivers & ear pads ( included with new drivers). Only my Utopias have more detail- not by much either. These phones are such a great all rounder. Decided to try a few old favourite. The drivers might be an small improvement on the initial drivers that came with the phones in 2015. Very happy I decided to have Pioneer do the maintenance In Japan.
 
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Jul 11, 2021 at 11:22 PM Post #1,932 of 1,979

Slim1970

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Just a quick update guys, I’m listening to JRiver on Win 10 into RME ADI Pro FS2 (older generation). In balance mode. Wow these headphones have been missed. Just so well balanced for a dynamic driver. I replaced the headband, drivers & ear pads ( included with new drivers). Only my Utopias have more detail- not by much either. These phones are such a great all rounder. Decided to try a few old favourite. The drivers might be an small improvement on the initial drivers that came with the phones in 2015. Very happy I decided to have Pioneer do the maintenance In Japan.
Agreed, these are great all around headphones.
 
Jul 12, 2021 at 2:05 AM Post #1,933 of 1,979

mrtim6

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Listening to Cafe Blue UN-mastered version great test for any headphone. The Pioneers really shine with this album as the recording is awesome and really natural. No nasty compression here. “To Rich for my Blood” is a great drum test track. Vocals are rendered really well as PB is often dramatic with an amazing vocal range. I know this might sound like an audiophile cliche album - but really the music is really good too!
 
Jul 18, 2021 at 7:43 PM Post #1,934 of 1,979

Slim1970

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The Pioneer SE-Master1's are simply brilliant directly out of the Chord Dave.

IMG_1184.jpg
 

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