Some W100 questions
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elnero

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Hey all,

Just got my 280's on the weekend and I'm already thinking about my next set of headphones, damn you all!
The W100's intrigue the hell out of me. I don't know whether I lust after that gorgeous wood or the description of the sound that Tomcat and some other people have given.

I may be coming into a bit of cash soon which may allow me to look at getting the W100's (either used or new)or maybe the HD580's depending somewhat on what comes of this thread.

I have a couple of concerns I have with the W100's. First off I've never had much luck with fit with that style of headband. I know it's different in that it's not really a band but it still worries me. I've got a really small head so that style is usually too big on me. Can anyone who owns them give me an idea how they compare to say an AKG 501 style band?

My other concern is sound, like the 280's the W100's have recieved some very mixed reviews. Tomcat's review makes them sound tubelike and lush yet detailed and powerful. Other reviews though have made them sound excessively bright and terribly colored. I don't mind somewhat colored as I like tubes but not excessively so and I'm somewhat sensitive to bright phones/speakers. Now by bright I mean spitty cymbals and excessive sibilance. I don't mind detailed bright and in fact prefer it to a dark sound.

Can anyone give me an idea how the W100's compare to the HD280's? I know the W100's are in a different league but this is really my only point of reference so a comparison of the characteristics might give me a better idea if the W100's are the way to go or whether I should just play it safe and get the HD580's with an amp.

Thanx for an help,


Phil
 
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Gus B

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Geez Phil, you lasted only 2 days as the honorary head of team HD280 pro. I think you should break-in & try out the 280s for at least 3 days before you upgrade. In any event, we need a new leader!
 
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Matthew-Spaltro

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the way the W100 fits on your head will take alot to get use too.
 
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PianoBlack

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I have a regular sized head for a girl (so take that as you may), but I did not experience discomfort when I first put it on. The push/uplift system on that headphones works, keeping the earcups where you want it. The pads are soft and comfy, if merely only a leather-lookalike. At times, I use it as a very expensive earmuff. Indoors. When my source crashed. ......

After pulling an allnighter with my Senns, I woke up with the feeling of very very pinched ears. Talk about head-fi hangovers.


...out of curiosity, why do you, Matthew, feel that it takes some time to get used to?

Sound:
1. I believe in burn-in. The period when I felt the W100s were bright was pre-100 hours. And it took me sometime to remember this--for I haven't experienced a sensation of brightness since.
2. You will be moved by these 'phones...with the right music. Strings seem to do *very* well here. Amazing imho vibrancy and woody richness.
3. Female voices IIRC seem warmer--rounder and richer.
4. Soundstage is good. Hmm... even though I feel the HD 600 seem less atmospheric, I'm actually more surprised when I hear extreme directional sounds with the Senns. [ie. I peer around paranoically if a whooshing sound effect is thrown in from left-field].
This I attribute to the Sennheiser's open structure--it mixes in outer noises with the music so that you do get an auditory sense of your surroundings when wearing the HD600s. This makes you more susceptible to audio directional aids, since there is a feeling of them being sounded in the 'real outer' world.
And the reverse can be said for closed phones.
 
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elnero

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Hi Gus,

Hehehe, well I really didn't plan on doing anything quite so soon. I decided to sell my bass which I haven't really touched in quite awhile. I really didn't think I would sell it right away but it looks like I might be gone by the weekend. That said I'm really not sure where I'm going, I'm just going to take my time and try to make the right decision with this money because I don't usually get much to spare. I may take it and buy a decent pcdp and amp or I may invest in a second set of phones so I'm not carting the 280's back and forth. Incidently as the 280's are breaking in I'm loving them more and more, my only complaint is just a touch of hardness and simbilance in the treble but it seems to be smoothing out a bit with break in.

So can I still be honorary head of Team 280 Pro for a little while longer?


Pianoblack,

Thank you for your input. Are you saying that even with a small head they should fit well? My fear is I won't be able to adjust them small enough for my head and the drivers will sit a bit below my ears.

Do you feel that the W100's are only good for acoustic music as I've heard some people say? I listen to a bit of everything from Tool, to Tori Amos to Miles Davis so I would want something that would be good on all things but really shine on the lighter more acoustic stuff. That more acoustic stuff and jazz is what I really sit down and "listen" to so as you say I want to be "moved" by it.

How about recommendations for amplification? Is there any combo that would work particularily well with the W100's and the 280's as well?

Thanx again everyone, I know I have alot of questions. I have no exposure to anything where I live so any decision I make is an educated guess, and guess where I'm doing my educating?


Phil
 
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Nick Dangerous

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NOTHING written on Head-Fi, HeadWize, or anywhere else adequately described the character of the W100 compared with how I perceived it myself.

Try before you buy.
 
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elnero

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Nick Dangerous,

Hehe, I gather you weren't too happy? Too bad it's almost impossible to try these cause you can't get em in North America.


Oh well.

Phil
 
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millerdog

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elnero,
they are available from audiocubes.com
check out the head-fi mall
md
 
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elnero

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Hey millerdog,

I already knew about audiocubes but thanx for thinkin of me.

I just meant it would be nice if you could go to your local audio store and be able to try em out. It sucks that you Audio Technica doesn't distribute them in North America.

Phil
 
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JML

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First, I fell in love with the W100s immediately, and they only got better. I sent the HD280s back the day I got them. The W100 is very, very comfortable, the HD280s are not (for me, anyway).

The HD280 reminded me in every way of a Sony V6. Not bad, but not in the league of the W100 or the HD580/600.

The sound is totally different, and I think the reviews say it all (pro and con). While they sound very good with almost any garden-variety source, if you get an amp you need to find one ready and willing to work with the impedance of the W100). The Corda HA-1 and the Ear Max Pro are not very expensive, but seem to many people to match up well.

I think they're wonderful with any type of music, which is what one should expect of any good transducer. They're not perfect, but nothing is. And at that price level, they have few peers.

Have fun -- and remember, if you don't like them, you can always sell them for around what you paid for them.
 
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elnero

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Just an update. The bass is sold and the money is in hand. Now to sell the amp.
I'm still not exactly sure what to do. Part of me wants to throw caution to the wind and order the W100's but then reality sets in.

Looks like my wifes pcdp will have to go in for repairs and may be a couple of months before we see it again. That leaves us both with out a source.
Also the 280's have shown just how awful my Sounblaster card at work is. So it looks like I have to change my plans around a bit. I think I'm gonna take the money and buy a SlimX and an amp, probably a meta42 from JMT, and put the second set of headphones idea on the backburner for now. This will give me more time to get used to the 280's. Hopefully I'll get a chance to demo some other stuff including the W100's in the near future so I know for sure if that's the route I want to go.

Would the Meta42 be a good choice to match with the 280's and eventually the W100's? JML mentioned the Corda HA-1 being a fairly good match with the 100's, what about the Porta Corda?

Thanx everyone,

Phil
 
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