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Raal Ribbon Headphones - SRH1A

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by once, Oct 7, 2018.
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  1. Zhanming057
    Glad to hear that you got to try out @llamaluv 's setups. I actually haven't heard those two amps personally but my past experience with Pass has been very positive, maybe generally a bit warm for my likings, and all of the Bryston amps I've tried works incredibly well with the SR1a.

    Where are you located? If you ever find yourself in MA, feel free to drop by and check out the two SR1a systems that I run, or maybe meet up at Goodwin's high end with access to really "above and beyond" stuff such as a pair of DMA400's and the Octave V110SE :)
    BreadMaster and llamaluv like this.
  2. cladane
    If I may be allowed one digression, the MySphere 3.2 saturates quickly to low frequencies (quite striked as can do good speakers amps) like you can find in Symphonic movements and my question would be to know what is the behavior of the SR1a in such cases ?
  3. biscottino
    Hi Cladane, my curiosity is at least as great as yours ... I had the mysphere at home for about 2 months and I made it go with my Aic10 riviera, nothing to say about the fabulous timbre and the spatial reconstruction that it gave a unique realism, with classical and not amplified music it was the top.
    But the only real problem is that the driver was in compression with modern genres and when the volume was raised, I think it's a bit too small, only 40mm, maybe I'm wrong but it was too fast at the end of the race.
    I also have an old k1000 overhauled recently in Austria and all in all I preferred it because I never had the feeling that it sounded distorted.
  4. ctemkin
    I do not understand the question (it possibly may have lost something in translation) other than being an inquiry as to SR1a's performance regarding symphonies.

    I have stopped, at least for a while, tweaking the position of the phones or comparing them to my Stax equipment. Instead, I am just listening to music. I have recently listened to Beethoven's Eroica, Dvorak's New World Symphony, and, for something with a jazz feel, Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue. The first two, in particular, have plenty of low frequencies. I thought that the sound was resplendent. I have previously listened to Bach organ music, and I feel that the phones did as great a job on the lower organ notes as they did on everything else.

    I do not know if that was responsive. I would be happy to try to be more specific if you clarify what you are interested in.

    yates7592 likes this.
  5. llamaluv
    Really nice custom build from Triton Cables. Neotech 18AWG UPOCC Silver. First quickie A/B test very favorable. Also, can't say enough for @alpha421's professionalism. Thanks @Zhanming057 for the reco and specs suggestions.

  6. yates7592
  7. yates7592
    Looks like really nice cables. I think you have the warm Pass Labs amp? I could see that silver cables would be a very good match with that amp. I went for copper after market cables which I think will be better suited with my Bryston amp. All horses for courses.
    BreadMaster and llamaluv like this.
  8. llamaluv
    Hi, yes, it's for the Pass Labs amp. It has slightly raised mid-bass to my ears, and slightly rolled-off treble. Actually, I like silver regardless. Well actually, I keep going back and forth. LOL.
    joseph69, Zhanming057 and yates7592 like this.
  9. yates7592
    Actually I'm hoping when I receive my copper cables that the SQ difference is enough to swap out the stock cables back and forth for genre or source tuning.
    BreadMaster and llamaluv like this.
  10. cladane
    Hi Ctemkin,
    You have understood my questions about SR1a. Since I found, somewhat like @biscottino, that MySphere 3.2 has a saturation problem with low frequencies, I was wondering about how in this spectrum the SR1a performed.
    I think that very often dedicated headphones amps aren’t able to go really down 100hz and so MySphere 3.2 isn’t too much molested but since we are speaking of speakers amps for the SR1a, the story is different and it could become difficult to drive the two headphones on the same amp.
    Interesting to read your return on Symphonies and SR1a.
    BreadMaster likes this.
  11. Zhanming057
    Re: the Mysphere 3.2 - it's more of a philosophical point if you talk to Heinz Renner about this. With listening volumes that cause no mid to long term hearing damage, the bass energy level is sufficient on the Mysphere 3.2 although the fundamental frequency is only the same as the bass heavy K1000 (50hz). And this is indeed a restriction of the driver design itself and from a design to optimize for efficiency and finer control. The driver itself is actually larger than the K1000, utilizing a unique square design to get more surface area at a fixed enclosure size.

    @biscottino Modern genres do indeed have more dynamic range than older recordings but unless your pair has quality issues, bass distortion should not show up before the drivers are pushed significantly beyond 100db at ear point. I haven't run into bass distortion issues on the Mysphere 3.2 at my listening levels (even the louder "reference" level of around 95 db that I use to critically evaluate headphones), but each person's listening habit will differ on that point.

    I don't have a stance on whether this is a good idea - Heinz wanted something that will work well with headphone amps (the AIC10 is an excellent example), and overall the trade-off seems like a reasonable one given that performance is only sacrificed at listening volumes where arguably, people should not be listening at for periods of longer than 10-15 minutes. That said, it does limit the overall dynamic range of the cans if you chose to listen at those volumes.

    With the SR1a's the design should work until 120dbs at ear point - far louder than anyone should ever be listening headphones to, at least for more than 1-2 minutes. The fundamental frequency is lower than the Mysphere 3.2 at 30hz, but if you run music with a lot of sub-bass you'll still notice that energy is lacking at the <30hz range. Overall, the bass on the SR1a is much better than the Mysphere 3.2, and I would indeed say that they are technically superior headphones - although the Mysphere 3.2 will happily work on strong portable sources, and is much more forgiving of bad vocal recordings because of its particular midrange imaging.

    Headphone amps don't usually have sub-100hz issues, unless we're talking about old or rather low-budget designs. Bass response on speaker amps is probably better for each price point, but if you look at a GSXmk2 against something like a J25, I don't think that you can say that one's bass is better than the other.

    Driving the Mysphere 3.2 on speaker amps is mostly a matter of tolerance to the noise floor. I've generally had pretty good experiences, and something like the Nagra Classic INT (or CH monoblocks or an AHB2) is entirely noise-free on the Mysphere 3.2. I bought the Nagra for triple duty on the Mysphere, 1266 phi and SR1a and it works pretty well for all three cans.
    Last edited: May 6, 2019
    dieslemat, llamaluv and BreadMaster like this.
  12. Zhanming057
    David is one of the very best people I know in the general head-fi business. Lots of people do good work but few are as prompt and professional as he is. He's also a dealer for Viablue, they have some very nice cables for the price point. If you want something specific out of their catalog, he would be the person to ask.
    llamaluv likes this.
  13. joseph69
    I'm located in Staten Island, NY which isn't far from Lee's place at all. I appreciate your invite very much, but I only have tunnel vision out of my left eye (right is totally blind) so I cannot have a drivers license therefor I won't be able to make it. But again, thank you very much for the kind offer.
    514077 and BreadMaster like this.
  14. Zhanming057
    If you plan in advance, Amtrak tickets could be as cheap as $90 for both directions...which is probably cheaper than fuel plus Boston parking. Just saying :) I do the NYC-Boston trip about twice a month and rarely pay more than $150 per round trip.

    Could still be a bit hard to navigate with vision impairment, of course.
    514077 and BreadMaster like this.
  15. 514077
    Maybe a friend could bring you? A great way to share your enjoyment of the high-end hobby. I used to have tunnel vision until six years ago, and I still know good people who like to have me around.
    BreadMaster likes this.
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