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They're good, even though they are not an investment..
Investment for the hobby
Would it be better to get a pre-owned set here or a new import from Japan, which is usually around $700 on ebay (and occasionally around $600 with deals). Don't know how long the evil me inside would ask for an upgrade .
Around a year in my case.
When I bought my used SRS-3100, the amplifier had a higher gain than it should - don't know if it is a defect or if it was modded.
You better buy a new local one, so you don't have to deal with voltages. It's one hell of a combo, and the amp is quite good, can be reused with other headphones.
Honestly, just go straight to the best one that you can afford.
There is no point of using the Lambdas as a transit point, while you know that you will get the Omegas later.
We all know that feeling of longing for something better..
Yep! That's pretty much the Stax formula....purchase the best you can afford.
In my case, it was L700 + 353X. Omegas (and their appropriate money-sink amps) are just too much for me. And I'm happy staying right here. No longing for more
While I'd say the L300 are great for female vocals, I'd hesitate to go with an immediate recommendation because of what you currently have.
The L300 are definitely a lot thinner-sounding than both the HD6xx and HD598. It can sound slightly hard and metallic in comparison to the lush and mellow Sennheisers. In exchange, you get much better treble extension with the Stax, along with a lot more texture in the upper mids. While I won't call the Sennheiser headphones veiled (maybe just mellow), they really do sound muffled in comparison if you switch from one to the other right away. Conversely, if you're used to the Sennheiser sound, you might find the L300 harsh and abrasive at first.
The Stax also have a lot less mid-bass, which you might miss coming from the much warmer HD6xx.
I think it comes down to what you're willing to risk in making such a dramatic jump in sound signature. If you're willing to give the "mental burn-in" some time to get used to the L300, then go ahead with our blessings. But if you want something that's more immediately similar to the HD6xx but with more upper mids, I'd hesitate and maybe look at something like the Elier for a similarly priced headphone.
Or, like others in this thread have pointed out, you might be better off biding your time and jumping straight to the L700, though I haven't tried that Stax yet (much to my personal shame).
If it's up to me, I'd actually be pretty happy owning the L300 over the HD6xx, since I do enjoy the sound of the L300 a lot. Also, I do enjoy the L300 a lot more than the Elier. But that's just my personal pick, and I'll really be cautious about the audio whiplash you might experience right away. Do think about it.
Hope my two cents have helped, hope either way you'll find something that'll make you happy.
**For clarification: I've owned the HD598, and have demoed the HD650, L300, and Elier several times but have not owned any of those three headphones. Take my impressions with a grain of salt compared to other owners of the L300.
Yeah, I'm also seriously considering getting a 3100 system as the entry point to stax. Thanks for the tips.
Thanks for the detailed reply! It seems that L300 is a good option as I want to try something different from HD6xx this time. It's likely that I will keep both (at least for quite a while) so that I can switch between the two for different scenarios. I have heard that listening to stax sounds like the singers are just singing directly into your ears. Can't imagine how delightful it would be .
I also own the 6XX and it’s pretty much my go to HP for most occasions (more comfortable sound and less of a hassle to deal with), but when I truly want to engage myself with the music I go to my L700 on the weekends.
I would never part with either of them!
Well said. For me, my modded TH-X00PH would be my main daily but the modded L300 Limited (L700 pads and headband arc assembly) is when I really want to experience the music.
I will say, what you drive them with makes a difference - going from the STAX SRM-323S to the NAD C275BEE stereo amp with Mjolnir Audio modded SRD-7 transformer noticeably improved the low end, dynamics, and smoothness. Best bass I've yet heard from any headphone.
Those L700 pads seem to do a really nice job of extending the L300's bass, based on FR graphs, probably due to the much better seal. I've been having the hunch that the new Lambdas' new mounting system is partially to blame for the new series' (relatively) poor bass extension. I'm planning on modding my L300's mounting system, as well as crafting my own lambskin ear pads, some time after their arrival (~10 days from now).
The L300 Ltd is very similar to the L700 to begin with, sounds different from a normal L300. Has the same stator design as the L700 and L500 pads:
L700 pads are a very minimal change from the L500 pads for the L300 Ltd, does extend the bass just a tad and slightly smoother sound. Mainly a comfort increase though... much softer than the L500 pads. Bass extension of the L300 Ltd is comparable to my modded TH-X00PH... it digs deep and gets down there. Actually has slightly more midbass punch than the TH-X00PH's but does not have the subbass impact/presence. Detail, speed, and finesse is on an entirely different level from anything else not STAX.... that combined with its extension is why the bass is the best I've heard so far.
I agree on this l300ltd bass quantity and perhaps qualityy is better than l700, wherease l700 have better highs (much better) with less bass quantity. For accoustic l700 is much real sounding while l300ltd is better for modren pop and forgiving of bad recordings.