Seattle Head-Fi meet Saturday January 25th - ORIGINAL for this date
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Dec 24, 2019 at 5:48 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 43


Headphoneus Supremus
Sep 13, 2014
Seattle area
Greetings fellow Seattle area hi-fi audio hobbyists! Let's ring in the new year in style with a new concept meet at a cafe venue. After 3 highly successful meets in the S.F. Bay Area I thought I'd set up a headphone meet at a cool venue in my hometown.

I've visited and confirmed they have 2 long wooden tables and 8 taller black metal tables which are very rugged and will be put together for even better stability. Also at least a dozen pairs of electric outlets and many chairs, easily enough for 30+ people sitting and more standing.



Saturday January 25th from 11am - 4pm

Urban Luxe Cafe
6105A Roosevelt Way NE Seattle, WA 98115
(right between UW and Northgate)

* Q: Will there be much noise from the coffee grinder or cafe patrons?
A: I have checked this out and it's actually not so loud :relaxed:. We will use the rear half of the cafe and let's try to keep a medium talking level

* Q: What happened to our usual Seattle area group leader?
A: He's still around and is welcome to join us

Q: Can I bring a visitor?
A: Absolutely! Feel free to bring a friend or two

Q: Do I need to bring any gear?
A: Nope, feel free to come just for the experience... thus being said, this is a member-contributed event so you are encouraged to being equipment as possible

Any other questions, feel free to ask here no matter how small the concern. :thumbsup:

Keep it proper (polite / reasonable) just like anywhere - follow the Head-Fi rules on etiquette, both online and offline.

  • In case anyone wants to expand on their audio experience before / after or just take a break, there are 3 audio related shops within 2 blocks walking distance: The Trading Musician (buy / sell music equipment like drums, keyboards, effects, etc.); Hawthorne Stereo (home stereo systems including vinyl, accessories and repair); and Definitive Audio (hi-fi home theatre systems and free auditioning)
  • I will be bringing a demo unit of the newly released SoundMAGIC HP-1000 closed back headphones which will shortly be sent to me for review by the fine folks at SoundMAGIC. I'm a fan of their HP-150 and have high hopes
  • Early 2020 I have in the works a super custom designed OTC SET tube amp (output transformer coupled single ended triode) on the way from respected boutique amp designer Glenn Studio. I may not get it in time for this meet but would love to showcase its' prowess at a next local meet, along with a planned purchase of the emerging technology HEDDphone One that I tailored the amp around
  • The cafe owners are reserving most of the space for us free of charge, but we are encouraged to buy drinks or food to make it worth while for them
  • Security: Let's all (myself included) look out for each other's gear, and only change equipment around with permission
  • This event will be open to the public so let's feel free to welcome in any visitors to our special hobby... show the locals there is more to sound reproduction than those wireless earbuds!
  • Clean up is planned from 4 - 4:30, subject to change
  • If you are planning / considering to attend, please post here to say hello and what you are thinking to bring
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Dec 24, 2019 at 5:52 AM Post #2 of 43
(tentative) List of members and gear:

SoundMAGIC HP-1000
HD-600 with upgraded cable
HD-380 Pro
Focal Spirit Classic

HD-650, Hifiman HE5-SE
Tubelab SET 45 amp
RJM Sapphire Class-A headphone amp
Twisted pear Buffalo 9038Pro DAC

TH-X00 Mahogany, Thieaudio Phantom
Sony XBA-N3, maybe MDR-EX1000, Magaosi K5

(see below for list in progress)

amp: Ampsandsound Mogwai SE
dac: Pure Audio Lotus Dac5
headphones: One of - ZMF Atticus, ZMF Auteur, Hifiman Arya.

+ more to come
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Dec 24, 2019 at 11:25 AM Post #3 of 43
Count me in!

AMP/DAC: THX 789, Cavalli Liquid Carbon X, Topping DX7s, Topping DX3 Pro, JDS Labs Atom, DarkVoice 336E
Headphones: Hifiman Arya, Hifiman Sundara, Hifiman HE4XX,Sony MDR-Z1R, Sennheiser HE60 (if fully restored by then), Sennheiser HD6XX, Sennheiser HD660S, AKG K712 Pro, Focal Elex, Modhouse Argons Mk.III, Beyerdynamic DT1990, Monolith M1060, Monolith M1060C

I may bring more or less depending on what I can comfortably pack.
Dec 24, 2019 at 3:22 PM Post #4 of 43
Fantabulous, good sir - you have enough gear to have a meet just me and you :grin:
Looking forward to it.
PS- I love the Liquid Carbon X and thought it's what the Liquid Carbon should have performed like, would like to hear it again but for me I'm leaning towards the iFi Micro Black label for my next transportable amp, though am open to opinions.
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Dec 28, 2019 at 2:00 AM Post #6 of 43
Count me in as well..

I can bring my DIY gear:
1) Tubelab SET 45 amp
2) RJM Sapphire Class-A headphone amp
3) Twisted pear Buffalo 9038Pro DAC

I'll bring an HD650 and and Hifiman HE5-SE.... maybe the ZMF Aeolus
Dec 28, 2019 at 3:00 AM Post #7 of 43
@caenlenfromOCN got you down - hope to see you down wit' us :L3000:
@itsikhefez Got you down too. Your gear sounds fabulous and just might give us a good taste of my upcoming OTC SET amp. :smile_phones: Do you want me to bring my modded HD-650? It has its' place depending on source chain but I've personally been gravitating towards an unmodded HD-600 with older drivers.
@Brainiac9000 Got you down for the event too. Let me know if you'd like me to post your gear list, or just leave it unless anything changes.
Dec 28, 2019 at 3:51 AM Post #8 of 43
Which mod do you have on your HD650? I only did a basic coin mod and have been thinking about the KISS mod but have not gotten around to it.
I actually enjoy the 45 SET the most with the HD650... it may be worth bringing your pair so that you have a familiar baseline.
Dec 28, 2019 at 6:30 AM Post #9 of 43
Which mod do you have on your HD650? I only did a basic coin mod and have been thinking about the KISS mod but have not gotten around to it.
I actually enjoy the 45 SET the most with the HD650... it may be worth bringing your pair so that you have a familiar baseline.
Mine is the coin mod plus some additional dynamat strips for sound reflection I did about 4 years ago. I'll bring it no sweat. I think we would like to see a photo here of your 45 tube amp if you got one. Is it OTL or OTC?
Dec 28, 2019 at 9:50 AM Post #10 of 43
Here are some photo's of the 45 tube amp and the RJM Sapphire.
The 45 is built around the Tubelab SE-II PCB. It is a transformer based circuit.
The tubes I ended up using are Sylvania 45 power tubes, Western Electric 417A driver tubes and Amperex 5AR4 rectifier.
Power tx was custom ordered from ISO in Japan. Output tx are from ElectraPrint. One deviation from standard CLC power supply was incorporating a HV regulator, since otherwise there was some hum with sensitive headphones.
This was pretty much a cost no object build, with DACT stepped attenuator and WBT RCA sockets.

The RJM sapphire is more basic but still a nice build with independent PS and circuits per channel. Only the oversized power transformer is shared. A nice TKD pot was used for this build.... it's performance is quite impressive IMO.

2019-11-04 10.37.33.jpg 2019-10-26 07.46.49.jpg
2019-04-06 13.41.58.jpg 2019-04-06 13.42.13.jpg
Dec 28, 2019 at 3:01 PM Post #11 of 43
I'd like to come as well.

I can bring my Fostex TH-X00 Mahogany, Thieaudio Phantom, Sony XBA-N3, and maybe MDR-EX1000 if I get my hands on one by then.
I also might have a Magaosi K5 on loan at the time, so I'll bring that if I have it.
Dec 28, 2019 at 3:13 PM Post #12 of 43
Very cool spot. Will have to check out that cafe one of these days. Can't do weekends but I realize that is the best time for most people. My headphone gear changes a lot but I always keep my custom Mapletree tube amp and woody headphones utilizing Grado drivers along with those from Symphones and Elleven Acoustica so one of these days they will make it out of the house and into the wild :wink:
Dec 28, 2019 at 6:28 PM Post #13 of 43
@itsikhefez looks stellar, this will be excellent to hear!
@gulag_me Got you on the list, I'm sure many of us would love to hear your Thieaudio Phantom and Magaosi K5 especially!

Also I'm sure some of you have noticed we have 2 Seattle meets at the same time. For a reason that shall remain confidential out of respect for the other party, the two Seattle meet organizers have momentarily parted ways so now we have two separate meets at the moment. I would very much enjoy saying hi to you folks for the first time in almost 2 years and try your unique rigs. Moreover I'm hoping as many of you as possible can experience this new-concept cafe venue meet up, and the fine owners of Urban Luxe Cafe are selflessly opening their space for the community and hope for at least a sizable turnout, so I hope to see anyone there that can make it! :smile_phones::thumbsup:
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Dec 28, 2019 at 11:05 PM Post #14 of 43
Also would anybody have a turntable they could bring? I would love to hear well mastered vinyl with a decent headphone amp. Not to mention it would look quite stylish in a cafe. I heard one at a CanJam but there was literally no proper amp.
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Jan 5, 2020 at 8:26 PM Post #15 of 43
This (possibly one-time-only) meet is still happening, in full effect, less than three weeks away and it will be unique guaranteed. Also is there any Verite owners out there (open or closed)? Myself and others would be keen to hear it.
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