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PSB M4U1 - Thoughts?

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by swmtnbiker, Nov 13, 2012.
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  1. bigro
    You set the Bar so high at Home. [​IMG]    Have you tried the PSB's with your home rig? WIth Tubes in the Mix I would be curious if the PSB's sounded close to the th900's on your home rig. Getting a tube sound on the go may be hard
     
    I have not seen many mods outside of the cabling. And I am not that adventurous to tear mine apart. A pad swap may be interesting. Since your current pads are worn maybe removing some of cloth in front of the drivers would change things a Bit. I saw some people do things like that in the Grado threads. I have not seen any aftermarket direct replacements maybe some people know of others that may be subbed ??
     
  2. cheeseeater

    I have tried the PSB with the my liquid glass amp and it didn't fare so well. I think it hits its ceiling with the dx90. That's ok. I do still really enjoy the PSB. I decided to go ahead with the mod attempt. And it worked beautifully. I can't say it'd recommend this to anyone. I thought I might be able to remove the plate over the driver using the 4 screws. But I removed the screws and discovered that the speaker is permanently adhered the the cover plate. So I replaced it very carefully. I don't recommend anyone remove this plate. Real damage could be done. But I decided to try to enlarge the holes using a Dremel tool. I very carefully cut away at as much plastic as I dare. The diaphragm is very delicate and clear, so it is practically invisible. I did this to one of my PSBs first and then did an A/B comparison. I have two of them. For me and my wife. Before the mod the were identical except that one was less comfortable. That's the one modified. Before the mood their sound was identical. After, the modified PSB has more detail, more natural voice, more volume/efficiency. Better timbre. More bass. AND I was surprised to discover that the moded phone is more comfortable too. I feel like the phone is better in every way. I'm definitely going to cut up the other one too. [​IMG][/IMG]
     
  3. cheeseeater
    IMAG0396.jpg
     
  4. bigro
    Pretty Fancy with the Dremel work There is some one ( maybe diamond ears??) that has taken it apart to rewire  maybe you can search for that post before you do # 2. I do not have the stones to use a dremel with the driver in place.
     
     
     
  5. Vero Golf Champ
    DSC_00091.jpg
     
    With regard to the stridency of the M4U1s, I haven't used them straight from my phone, but it wasn't much of an issue with the FiiO E07K DAC/amp due to the warmth of the amp section. It did become an issue when I added the clean sounding Pro-Ject Head Box S amp and used the FiiO as a DAC only via the L7 line out adaptor. Substituting the Pro-Ject DAC Box S USB I grabbed this week banished any hint of such treble sharpness, although it possibly loses a smidgeon of detail and sparkle up top to the FiiO as DAC. In all other respects the Pro-Ject DAC bests the FiiO, as you'd expect, but not by a huge margin. They both recognise the flac feed from my phone via OTG usb. In my view the PSBs scale up very well with better recordings, sources and amplification. They are just so transparent. 
     
  6. diamondears
    iFi micro iTUBE>>>iFi micro iCAN>>>PSB M4U 1 is really addicting. Even with the XBass on the iCAN at the maximum level, details are still very clear on the M4U1. Can't believe why I decided to get the 2 gears just now.
     
  7. bigro
    I ran across this Cable from FIIO . According to the website It is OCC copper. There are two different ends. One with a very thin 3.5mm jack that slides perfectly into the M4U1 Jack and the other end is a nice silver metal one that would go to you source. Its $28 on amazon with free shipping. Its about 4 feet long. I do hear a very noticeable decrease in sibilance as opposed to the stock cable. I was shooting for the Oyaide mentioned earlier. but in my research I came across this one and figures I would give it a shot.
     
     
    http://www.fiio.net/en/products/22
     
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GGL5TKI?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s01.
     
    I still have not grown the stones to hack into the psb's for any modding otherwise.
     
    Vero Golf Champ likes this.
  8. Bansaku
     
    The OCC cable I posted on the last page came in (yay!), but the connectors were still on their way so I decided to use it for my Grado SR60i that needed a new cable and wait for the 2nd cable to arrive to do the M4U1. All I can say is that I am expecting greatness when I do up the PSBs as the cable I got from China significantly improved any shortcomings of the SR60i. I have 2 pairs, one modded with the 3 holes and one that wasn't (that needed recabling). After I did up the wires I was shocked at how much the sound improved; Bass is kicked up a notch and cleaned up significantly (so much so it is on par with the 3 hole mod), the mids became more smooth and open and the treble lost quite a bit of the Grado bite. The 3.5mm plugs arrived 2 days later than the cable, and I wish I had held off and did the PSBs. 
     
    In short, an OCC cable (with dual plugs) is the key to greatness for the M4U1.
     
    [​IMG]
     
  9. bigro

    With Dual plugs.... You are killing me here. [​IMG] 
     
    I had a Pair of Grado SR80's. I could not get over the mid high bump it made them almost unbearable.
     
  10. diamondears
    FiiO cable uses the same supplier of the OCC material (Furukawa IIRC) as Oyaide.
     
  11. bigro
    Good to Know.  Now If I can get that whole dual plug thing out of my head.
     
  12. diamondears
    If you want to save money WITHOUT losing in incremental SQ improvement, iPhone 6+>>FiiO E12 is really kind of end game. If you like bit forward/emphasized mids/vocals, FiiO E12A. Just make sure you always put iPhone volume to maximum.
     
  13. Bansaku
     
    My next post won't help with this...at all!  [​IMG]
     
  14. Bansaku
    Heyas good folk! The parts came in from China and I finally got my new cable constructed! I have had it done for a few days but I wanted to get a full set of testing done before I post anything. First off, as much as my previous posts were genuine and honest in regards to my impressions on the increased sound quality between cables, forget everything I said! My new OCC dual plug balanced cable is a whole new beast!
     
    But first, a few pictures. Sorry for the potato quality, the ambient lighting was at the perfect level that my 6th gen iPod hates.
     
     
    The Preparation
    IMG_1011.jpg
     
     
    IMG_1019.jpg   IMG_1021.jpg   IMG_1022.jpg
     
     
    IMG_1025.jpg
     
    First Impressions on build quality:
     
    My first impression was that of worry. The cable was the size of the Sennheiser IE80. I knew I ordered essentially an IEM DIY replacement cable, but the pictures made the thickness seem beefier than it was. After re-wiring my one of my SR60i and A/B'n the stock cable vs the new one, all worries went out the door.
     
    The cable is very light, and essentially feels invisible when dangling from the cups. Construction wise, while light feels very durable. The outer cable casing does not feel cheap, and both the metal plug and the y-split relief feel like they will out live the cable. Microphonics are literally absent; No matter what the cable rubs on (shirt, collar, chair, beard) or even if I tap the cord, it is dead silent!
     
    In terms of any EMI/RFI, the cable offers none. Moving the cable close to my WiFi router and cordless phone, I could hear nothing but a dead black background. Not only are the OCC strands twisted, they are coated with a non-conductive teflon-esque material, and the signal/return wires themselves are twisted, so there is no need for elaborate shielding that are required for straight leads.
     
    The Sound:
     
    One word: MAGIC!
     
    Game over, I am done! See ya'll later! [​IMG]
     
     
     
    OK ok, I will elaborate.
     
    Speed: The first major change I noticed was the increase in speed. Not just the lower frequencies, but across the whole spectrum! I never in a thousand years would expect a cable to increase the speed of a dynamic transducer, but it did, and not in a subtile way either. The added speed is very tangible, I would even go so far as to say visceral.
     
    Bass: The mid-Bass definitely slams harder, and the sub-Bass (while not as increased) has added weight. Thanks to the increase of speed, the added control on the bass is simply astounding. I would say a good 1.25dB gain and 100% added control. 
     
    Mids: The mids were always pretty smooth and detailed, but the new cable added a good dose of body and added transparency. I hate to say it, but even with my Audiophile OFC interconnects, as well as my previous custom cables, there was invisible grain. I never noticed it before, but after the OCC upgrade, it becomes quite apparent. It was especially prevalent in the upper-mids (i.e. female vocals) but that is all gone.
     
    Treble: OMG! Pure bliss! I am now hearing the nano-details I have only heard with beyerdynamic's Tesla series drivers. Dead serious here! Not only does the treble come across as more airy, the detail just pops! Again, thanks to the added speed, the treble is very controlled. No glare, no peakiness!
     
    Soundstage: While the left/right and the up/down space remained virtually the same in comparison to my old custom cable (which was significantly better than the stock cable), what was significantly increased was the depth. Listening to some of Chesky's test tracks sound even more lifelike and amazing. My ears may have flinched before when Edgar the Barber was giving me a virtual haircut, now they curl!
     
    Transparency: Metaphors best describe the added transparency. The stock cable is like a dirty pane of glass. Upgrading to (virtually) any aftermarket cable is like wiping the pane of glass with your sleeve to clean it. Upgrading to an audiophile/custom cable is like using Windex and a soft chamois to clean the glass. The OCC cable is equivalent to outright taking away the glass altogether!
     
    Volume increase and the break-up of sound: This is kind of an off-ball category, but is worth a mention as it is not only a big factor, but one that many professional reviewers have given the M4U 1 a negative for (usually their ONLY negative). At higher volumes, the sound tends to not sound as smooth, and at loud volumes tend to break-up. The most noticeable degradation of sound is that of peakiness, greatly effecting sibilance (both harshness and stridency), adding glare to the upper registers of instruments, and generally taking away from the overall transparency. The OCC cable completely remedies this! I listened to my M4U 1 for 3 hours straight last night at a level that would make most audiophiles cringe, and my ears heard nothing but euphoric bliss! I could have easily listened for another 2 hours but it was already very late and sleep was a good option.
     
    Well, that's about it. In closing, if anyone is interested in a cost effective way of significantly increasing the performance of your M4U 1 (or any headphone for that matter) I suggest taking the route I took. Seriously, $15 total cost! One does not need to be an expert in soldering to make this happen, but if anyone is unsure, or unequipped to make your own cable, PM me and we can arrange for delivery to me and I will gladly make one up for you and ship it (assuming you live in North America, it should be a couple dollars shipping from me to you). Anyway, I am off to enjoy the fruits of my labour!
     
    [​IMG] 
     
  15. Broo0d
    I'm thinking of buying a new headphones.

    I like my psb m4u1, but I also like to explore the open backed planar magnetic. Hifiman he400s to be exact.

    Any recommendations?
     
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