Seattle Meet at Bottleheadquarters 5/5/2018 impressions
Status
Not open for further replies.
post-14221684
Thread Starter
Post #1 of 21

BIG POPPA

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Jun 8, 2006
Messages
4,100
Reaction score
100
Joined
Jun 8, 2006
Posts
4,100
Likes
100
This meet was so GOOD, if you missed it um you really missed a great meet. A lot of peeps showed up. The hosts were so gracious. We had a lot of new faces. and new gear.
Walked on the ferry with my son GabeZ and we both had a great day. Ran around downtown Winslow. Picked up provisions from Hitchcock Deli and checked out Sound records before hopping in a lyft to BottleHeadquarters.
Did it to see how easy it was. Really easy to do from Seattle. Just a few thoughts
 
     Share This Post       
  • Like
Reactions: Mshenay
post-14221765
Post #2 of 21

DecentLevi

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Sep 13, 2014
Messages
3,408
Reaction score
852
Location
Seattle area
Joined
Sep 13, 2014
Location
Seattle area
Posts
3,408
Likes
852
     Share This Post       
post-14221959
Post #3 of 21

Soundsgoodtome

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Apr 19, 2013
Messages
6,871
Reaction score
1,251
Location
SEATTLE
Joined
Apr 19, 2013
Location
SEATTLE
Posts
6,871
Likes
1,251
Thanks to Gil and Doc and Eileen for getting the meet together and providing a very cool space for us to gather.

Be sure to check out Bottlehead products here:
https://bottlehead.com/bottlehead-products/

I'll have some impressions soon, it was a fun meet and got to see many familiar faces as well as new ones. Apologies for the blurred pics, I think I got a smudge on my camera phone along the way:

31944728_10215756986540265_7556906072963809280_o.jpg
Ham Sandwich's Cavali Amps (Liquid Glass and Carbon) with his Gumby behind the headphones.

31945886_10215756985980251_4025972802761785344_o.jpg
Levi's amp Euforia

31946426_10215756985460238_9073380148107018240_o.jpg
I want to say a Cavalli on the left, a custom amp center, and not sure of the unit under the headphone stand.

31946525_10215756984140205_890344293804277760_o.jpg
Atomic Bob's Soekris 1541 DAC with the Lyr3 and the fancy tube!!

Doc's many setup upstairs from Mainline, to SEX, to Crack, and I'm not sure what amp is hooked up to the reel system but it was impressive with the K1K.
31944685_10215756980100104_6411575673944539136_o.jpg

31947754_10215756979420087_8204233055506792448_o.jpg

31949003_10215756980540115_7461938294440329216_o.jpg

31949460_10215756983140180_1986447542908354560_o.jpg

31950097_10215756982700169_5647155406032601088_o.jpg

31955474_10215756978540065_7755251957660385280_o.jpg

31946327_10215756981260133_1149295474172231680_o.jpg

Musiqboy's ever expanding tower! It's front and center for a reason, so many custom work throughout this system there's nothing that can be bought off the shelf except the computer and monitor.
31956358_10215756977860048_8539038434973450240_o.jpg
My humble/portable FiiO X7ii/Chord Hugo 2 with the even more humble but kickin Project Horizon 3. The Campfire Audio Cascade close back headphones were a hit with everyone who tried them! The Hugo 2 also was showing some FPGA magic and was very well received.
Eric's Spring DAC with a Project Ember and as the many 64Audio IEMs that Eric has collected over the years!
32072931_10215756986940275_9214893784297373696_o.jpg

Empty ferry? Nope, just a shot of the tail end leaving Bainbridge Island.
31958710_10215756987300284_5164443275720916992_o.jpg

Ferry ride back to the city:
31945613_10215756988660318_7953286070680944640_o.jpg
 
Last edited:
post-14222465
Post #4 of 21

Doc B.

Member of the Trade: Bottlehead Corporation and The Tape Project, LLC
Joined
Sep 10, 2002
Messages
761
Reaction score
208
Location
Bainbridge Island, WA
Joined
Sep 10, 2002
Location
Bainbridge Island, WA
Posts
761
Likes
208
Website
bottlehead.com
Thanks everyone, that was a really good meet! Great to see so many new faces. I mentioned this to a lot of you, but I'll say again that we are always happy to demo our stuff if you would like to come back for a more focused listening session without so much else going on. Just give us a call ahead of time and we can have what you want to hear warmed up and ready when you get there. Lots of interesting gear at the meet. This time I made a concerted effort to listen to headphones that were new to me. Of note to my ears was the Cascade Audio Campfire. Nice sounding cans with a Mainline. Hopefully lots of pics will be posted.
 
post-14222814
Post #5 of 21

DecentLevi

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Sep 13, 2014
Messages
3,408
Reaction score
852
Location
Seattle area
Joined
Sep 13, 2014
Location
Seattle area
Posts
3,408
Likes
852
I Enjoyed Atomik Bob's setup as probably the best performance from a smaller / transportable rig there. Very euphonic and realistic, with nice slam to the drums and almost a holographic soundstage, though to me it seemed there may have too much effect on perhaps stereo virtualization or the like, which I'm sure is easily customizable.

Silly enough, I don't think I got the chance to try any actual Bottlehead headphone amps; though I certainly have at past meets. Did I miss out too much on any of their amps that may have especially stood out?

I was also quite impressed with the Fostex TH-900 headphones (with the impractical seeming dual 3-pin 3.5mm to 4-pin XLR balanced cable with 4-pin XLR to 6.5mm adapter BTW, OMG!!! :flushed:) - very detailed, dynamic presentation with vivid mids and superb dynamics with good slam to the drums and great bass definition. Seems to pair well with many amps, and IMO better than any of the 3 Fostex TH-X00 series that I've carefully reviewed (more linear and less lush / overdone, larger soundstage). Of course not quite on the same level as the flagship closedbacks Mr. Speakers Ether C Flow.

I missed the chance to demo Musiqboy's tower as well
 
Last edited:
     Share This Post       
post-14222883
Post #6 of 21

DecentLevi

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Sep 13, 2014
Messages
3,408
Reaction score
852
Location
Seattle area
Joined
Sep 13, 2014
Location
Seattle area
Posts
3,408
Likes
852
BTW I had some of the best beer of my life that I sampled next door afterwards and discovered I like Stout and Scottish Ale - at Bainbridge Brewing I think. And I much enjoyed the insightful and humorous chats with Big Poppa and others.
 
Last edited:
     Share This Post       
  • Like
Reactions: Zachik
post-14223051
Post #7 of 21

bimmer100

Member of the Trade: Kitsune HiFi / HoloAudio USA
Joined
Feb 5, 2015
Messages
1,332
Reaction score
420
Location
Washington State
Joined
Feb 5, 2015
Location
Washington State
Posts
1,332
Likes
420
Website
kitsunehifi.com
Thanks to Doc B and Queen B for hosting a wonderful event for the locals to come by and enjoy some music. I was quite impressed with Doc's own Jäger loudspeaker system upstairs and would love to have kicked back on the couch for a while to relax to some of his music. I meant to ask for the track name of one of the songs I heard up there. That room is well dialed in for excellent acoustics. I would like to have system like this at home for sure. I found it to be the most impressive setup at the show, however unfair to compare to headphone setups :D

I must apologize for the photos since I had my camera setup incorrectly and some photos were quite blurry. :/

The Campfire Audio Cascade headphones were excellent, those 42mm Beryllium drivers deliver excellent speed and decay. Lovely delicate details can be heard when a transducer is as efficient as one made with Beryllium. The Utopia's have that Beryllium drivers and its fun to think that the Cascade's are a small fraction of the cost yet deliver excellent sound.

Here are some photos to share.
bottlehead2018 (1).JPG
bottlehead2018 (2).JPG
bottlehead2018 (3).JPG
bottlehead2018 (4).JPG
bottlehead2018 (5).JPG
bottlehead2018 (6).JPG
bottlehead2018 (7).JPG
bottlehead2018 (8).JPG
bottlehead2018 (9).JPG
bottlehead2018 (10).JPG
bottlehead2018 (11).JPG
bottlehead2018 (12).JPG
bottlehead2018 (13).JPG
bottlehead2018 (14).JPG
bottlehead2018 (15).JPG
bottlehead2018 (16).JPG
bottlehead2018 (17).JPG
bottlehead2018 (18).JPG
bottlehead2018 (19).JPG
bottlehead2018 (20).JPG
bottlehead2018 (21).JPG
bottlehead2018 (22).JPG
bottlehead2018 (23).JPG
bottlehead2018 (24).JPG
bottlehead2018 (25).JPG
 
     Share This Post       
post-14223858
Post #9 of 21

thegabe

Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 19, 2016
Messages
58
Reaction score
23
Joined
Nov 19, 2016
Posts
58
Likes
23
It was fantastic. I didn't care much for the sound profile of the K1000s, it was superb with my Utopia. It was playing music off tape and it sounded like I was there.
 
     Share This Post       
post-14224290
Post #10 of 21

BIG POPPA

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Jun 8, 2006
Messages
4,100
Reaction score
100
Joined
Jun 8, 2006
Posts
4,100
Likes
100
Anyone try that amp?
The 845 amp? Of course. It's a beast. One of the first things I did when it was made. Case work is crazy good. Imagine the tubes you could roll with that?
 
     Share This Post       
post-14224480
Post #11 of 21

Torq

Sponsor: Headphones.com
Joined
Sep 2, 2015
Messages
1,810
Reaction score
2,041
Location
Seattle, WA
Joined
Sep 2, 2015
Location
Seattle, WA
Posts
1,810
Likes
2,041
First, thanks to both @BIG POPPA, @Doc B. and Queen Eileen for arranging and hosting this as well as for the excellent hospitality; couldn't ask for better hosts! I've been meaning to go to this event every year since I became aware of it and this is the first time I managed to make it. It was well worth the trip and it was a wonderful afternoon getting to reconnect with some old faces, meet some new ones and finally get a chance to explore the Bottlehead line-up in more depth!

Was a very welcome surprise to see @atomicbob present and doing well, as well as listening to his dac1421/Lyr 3 (w/ a Western Electric 101d encapsulated 6SN7-SE) and HD650. It was a lovely sounding setup and definitely delivers results that are more than the simple sum of its parts. Great "system synergy" and the sort of thing one just gets lost in the music with. Fortunately it wasn't too busy when I got to listen to that so it was easier to hear it properly.

@Muziqboy's ever-evolving setup was even more impressive than the last time I got to hear it. Tweaked and modified to an extent that's well beyond my innate laziness, the results were incredibly impressive. It's one of the smoothest, most resolving, analog-like setups I've heard. Fortunately for all involved, it's much too big to sneak off with ...

@BIG POPPA showed a very interesting cable design that I'm going to have to experiment with myself. Extremely interested to see how that works out and what effects it realizes in my own system.

@Doc B. was very accommodating with my general chattiness and shared some fascinating insights and stories into his amp designs, about his history and "The Tape Project". That provided a really nice contextual setup for going into comparing the full line-up of Bottlehead headphone amps back-to-back (and from a common source). And this was an excellent reminder of how much of the price/performance ratio gets eroded with pre-built/ready-to-run products (especially those sold through the traditional distributor/dealer model) ... with each of the amps on display comfortably performing at a higher level than anything I can think for anywhere near their respective prices.

I'd been wanting to actually build some of these amps and never gotten around to it, and after getting to compare them all I think it's safe to say that I'll wind up doing at least the Crack (I took advantage of the current sale and ordered that with the Speedball upgrade immediately), Crack-a-two-a and the SEX 3.0 ... in order. I might do a Mainline as well, and my only reservations there are that I like to see my tubes exposed and the VHF tubes in use on that amp are shielded and not directly visible ... it was certainly an excellent listen!

I think the highlight for me, beyond connecting with old friends and meeting the new folks, was the "Neo Thorium" (I might be getting the name wrong ... still ...) which is the big, red, 845-based amp in the pictures above. That was being fed off a 1/4" 15 IPS tape deck and sounded absolutely staggering. Not only does it sound amazing, it looks spectacular too and the use of IN13 tubes in there for some very cool "bar graph" style level-meter displays. If I can figure out a place to put it where I'll actually be able to use it (downsizing one's living space has some real drawbacks sometimes) then I fully intend on acquiring this thing. Despite a bit more ambient noise from the relative-mass of people in attendance it was still very clear that this is the best sounding 845-based amp I've heard, and easily in contention as one of the top three amps I've heard period (I'd have to hear them all together to be sure, and they're all using different tubes and have different presentations/renderings to boot). I have 300B, 2A3 and 45 series tube amplification covered, and 845 is, for me, the significant missing element there.

I'd have loved to have listened to more of the, very interesting, rigs (at all levels), but for me this event was more about the people and the Bottlehead amps (coupled with dashing over straight from opening day of boating season and having to dash off for an event in Seattle right after the meet). All around it was a wonderful afternoon and I'm already looking forward to next year!
 
post-14224722
Post #12 of 21

Mshenay

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Mar 30, 2012
Messages
15,359
Reaction score
1,384
Joined
Mar 30, 2012
Posts
15,359
Likes
1,384
Website
oakforestaudio.blogspot.com
Wow awesome as ever! You west coast guys seem to have the coolest and most exotic gear!!!
Lovely pics thanks for sharing
 
     Share This Post       
post-14224755
Post #14 of 21

Doc B.

Member of the Trade: Bottlehead Corporation and The Tape Project, LLC
Joined
Sep 10, 2002
Messages
761
Reaction score
208
Location
Bainbridge Island, WA
Joined
Sep 10, 2002
Location
Bainbridge Island, WA
Posts
761
Likes
208
Website
bottlehead.com
Wow awesome as ever! You west coast guys seem to have the coolest and most exotic gear!!!
Lovely pics thanks for sharing
That reminds me of being in an elevator at the Venetian in Vegas at CES with my San Francisco business partners several years ago. We're all wearing jeans and t-shirts. Two guys get in the elevator wearing slacks, leather jackets, Italian loafers, gold chains. One of them says to us - so, youse guys east coast or west coast?
 
     Share This Post       
  • Like
Reactions: Currawong
post-14224848
Post #15 of 21

Mshenay

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Mar 30, 2012
Messages
15,359
Reaction score
1,384
Joined
Mar 30, 2012
Posts
15,359
Likes
1,384
Website
oakforestaudio.blogspot.com
That reminds me of being in an elevator at the Venetian in Vegas at CES with my San Francisco business partners several years ago. We're all wearing jeans and t-shirts. Two guys get in the elevator wearing slacks, leather jackets, Italian loafers, gold chains. One of them says to us - so, youse guys east coast or west coast?
Ahh neat, either way I'd love to head out for a visit. From what I understand there's a plethora of really outstanding companies in an around you! I think Audeze has headquarters there, A&K too, You guys, Schiit, so forth and so on! also nice to see some action from @atomicbob & @Torq

I always enjoy reading your impressions and input!
 
     Share This Post       
Status
Not open for further replies.

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Top