The best headphones in terms of dynamics
Dec 21, 2013 at 11:35 AM Post #46 of 70
I went back through the thread and just corrected my earlier post: only some people had it completely wrong, not most. Notably TMRaven, but also fishski13 and Austin Morrow. Dynamics isn't only emphasis (the term for emphasis by itself is sforzando), and it's definitely not "slam" either. It's essentially a volume scale along a period of time.

never did i say that dynamics was "only emphasis".  excellent dynamic portrayal does include these "micro-dynamics" i was attempting to describe.     
Dec 21, 2013 at 4:07 PM Post #47 of 70
I think it's fair to say that we're all going to focus on certain aspects and examples of dynamics, relative to how we individually perceive them.  Given that we're essentially talking about a topic as broad as the rate and degree of change in levels over time across the entire spectrum, there are plenty of ways to quantify that individually - especially taking musical preferences into account. 
That said, I do concur with edstrelow here when he points out...
  It doesn't make sense to talk about dynamics from a speaker or headphones without also considering the amplifier used to drive them, and even the rest of the signal chain.  The ability of a transducer to accurately present loud and soft passages is very much a function of whatever amp is driving it and the efficiency of the transducer.

...which essentially means that we're probably going to end up citing a lot of personal and highly subjective experiences with certain rigs (or at least pairings) on the whole.  And on that note, I'd have to point out that third_eye's DNA Stratus & HD 800 rig was pretty up there for me in terms of dynamics.  That rig's ability to rise brutally fast and strong, and fade just as quickly, was impressive.
Dec 24, 2013 at 5:26 AM Post #48 of 70
I totally get what the OP means when talking about K701's. I also always thought they had extremelly good dynamics and transient response. They just have this ability to explode all of a sudden that other dynamic headphones I've heard don't do, not even my T1's.  There are a couple of spots in certain music, like for example Patricia Barber - My girl...towards the end of the song after the guitar solo, there are several plucks on the guitar that sound REALLY fast and loud on K701' BAM and it just happens, like a gunshot almost, with other headphones (even T1's) it sounds like the pluck of the guitar is slightly compressed, it doesn't have the quickness and sharpness of the K701.
Dec 24, 2013 at 5:54 AM Post #49 of 70
You know I've been wondering this question for a long time. What is dynamics in relation to headphones incorporating different transducer technologies? Is it the tight punchy bass line that makes your ear drums rattle or is it the ability to bring forth set a unique musical presentation noticeably different from each type of headphone that uses different transducer technology?
The HD600's are often well regarded to compare to mid range Stax Lambda lineup in certain areas, for myself I've owned/heard nearly all the Stax Lambda family lineup from the normal bias Lambda from 1978? to the SR-507 (the only Lambda I have not heard yet is the Lambda Pro Classic and the Lambda Signature) but that's a different story, the point being is, when I listen to classical, more so larger compositions mainly orchestra or so, the Stax offers unparalled transient, treble extension (sometimes a bit too much), great highs and tight bass, down to earth flat neutral sounding prat and good mids, but switching over to the HD600's or equivalent, flaws in the sound are easier to pick but the musical is more musical, I am sucked more into the music itself rather than being impressed by the technicalities of the Stax, so what is dynamics? You tell me.
Dec 24, 2013 at 8:55 AM Post #50 of 70
^ I don't think that's dynamics, but I do get what you mean when you talk about 'following the music', especially with slow romantic orchestral music. I've noticed that those melodic lines were more evident when I tried the STAX SRM007ii (the tube amp), compared to my SRM600ltd. Not sure why, though :)
Dec 24, 2013 at 4:53 PM Post #52 of 70
I have and it's different to how reviewers here have gone expressing there meaning of dynamics, again different to how I interpret dynamics in terms of speakers and different to how the headfi audio glossary sticky thread defines it.
Dec 24, 2013 at 7:29 PM Post #53 of 70
dynamic range would be the range between the smallest nuances and the loudest sound reproduced
by this by looking to your oscilloscope in foobar (or whatever) most of the amplitude of the waveform is that of the lower frequencies, which requires the most energy to be reproduced, the higher frequencies will define the crest of the waveform
so it's easy to figure out that at different frequencies a headphone will have different dynamic ranges, depending on it's frequency response and volume/loudness they are driven
that's where it gets confusing since most perceive music with higher dynamic range compression (lower dynamic range) as being/having more dynamic/dynamics
and the hi-fi "definition" of dynamics is not really strictly related to the technical definition but more to the sense of perceived energy
so if you think of dynamic driver headphones they get easily bright at higher volumes exactly because they can't keep with the full frequency range dynamics, or in simpler words preserve the amplitude difference (energy ratio) between the lowest and highest frequencies of the audio waveform being reproduced, but because of that they have more treble (high frequency) energy, therefore perceived as more dynamic
so actually lcds have a higher dynamic range and that's why they are dark sounding, well actually in hi-fi terms they have less treble energy so they are less dynamic, wait what !?!
Dec 26, 2013 at 2:27 AM Post #54 of 70
  dynamic range would be the range between the smallest nuances and the loudest sound reproduced
that's where it gets confusing since most perceive music with higher dynamic range compression (lower dynamic range) as being/having more dynamic/dynamics
and the hi-fi "definition" of dynamics is not really strictly related to the technical definition but more to the sense of perceived energy

I think you've nailed it pretty well Rakijadon, that pretty much sums up my interpretation of dynamics with headphones. Good job.
Dec 26, 2013 at 5:30 AM Post #55 of 70
If I compare Sen HD 650 to Stax sr-x3, cetainly, hd 650 gives the impression of bigger difference between orchestral tuttis and preceeding pianissimo compared to stax. But I also think that this is part of the specific coloration of Senn (or dynamic headphones, if you like). Not only the well known effect of mid-bass boosting of senn contributes to this perception of bigger impact of tutti, but maybe the slower transducers of the Senn respond less to micro-dynamism, and thus given suddenly more impact of changes of energy at the expense of real life changes in music.
Dec 26, 2013 at 10:13 AM Post #56 of 70
I think that not the bass boost is what gives illusion of big dynamics, but upper mids and treble humps. They emphasise strings, cymbals and drum attack in acoustic music.
Dec 26, 2013 at 1:28 PM Post #57 of 70
But than you should hear HD800 as the more dynamic can compared to 701, should'nt you?
Dec 26, 2013 at 5:14 PM Post #59 of 70
Yeah dynamics is one of those things like soundstage and imaging which cannot be represented by FR measurements but more dependant on the actual design of the headphone.
Jan 10, 2014 at 11:26 AM Post #60 of 70
than the safest bet for most dynamic transducers would probably be multi driver (crossover) structures, like in iems (balanced armatures)
and the ultimate transducer in terms of dynamics would be some kind of floating type, independent from mechanical constraints, like plasma transducers
plasma headphones imagine that


Users who are viewing this thread