Toys for Boys
Nov 9, 2013 at 9:36 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 93

musikaladin

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...returning home after a long and hard working day you quickly rush to the shrine and ...there it is... your favourite toy...errrr... or second favourite, or whatever...
 
Anyway... your set-up is more than just about listening music? It is passion for design, fine mechanics, precision, digital and analogue circuits... Fine-tuning the system to achieve best performance is not a burden but a pleasure.
 
It is the condensed substance of your boldest boyhood model-railway fantasies.
 
Below pictures show my little "system for modern nomades". Due to my job, me and my family are relocating quite frequently within Asia. As such the system is supposed to remain rather compact.
 
The heart of the Set-Up is a Jeff Rowland Capri Preamp with a Sennheiser HDVD800. Connections are balanced wherever possible. Souces are Krell Kid, Micro Seiki DDX-1000 and a Shanling Music Center. A small active studio-monitor, in this case the Focal Solo6 is doing the job in combination with a (closed cabinet) Velodyne Sub. Headphoes are Denon D7100, AKG K-1000, Hifiman HE-400 and a AKG K-702 and some others which are not shown on the pics here.
 
Depending on the headphone the sound ranges from rather slim & dry to quite full & bloomy. I choose based on the music-genre, recording quality and the mood I am in.
Still, the speakers clearly have the lead: "Un"-distorted, precise & detailed, no listening-fatigue and a wonderful imaging and sound-stage.
There is surely lots of space for further improvement (...so from time to time I wonder how it would sound with my Backes & Mueller U-Sub2 instead of the Velodyne), but still, sound-wise I am a very happy with the system as it is.
 
Anybody else who every now and then surrenders to the child inside and gives full attention to such kind of toy...? Feel free to share here...
 

 

 

 

 
Dec 23, 2013 at 12:24 AM Post #4 of 93

musikaladin

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After some years of service, the Krell Kid's I-Phone socket started making problems. So I brought it to a service centre and wait for return now, and took the chance to buy a Cambridge ID100.
 
Now things changed totally:
The Krell actually took a balanced analogue signal from the i-Pod and then passed it via balanced output to the Capri pre-amp.
The Cambridge Audio doc ID100 picks up the digital signal and passes it optically to the Sennheiser HDVD800. The HDVD's internal DAC is converting and passing a output signal directly to the headphone or via balanced cable to the pre-amp.
 
This is a huge improvement compared to the Krell Kid and I will keep it like that (....for the time being:).  I will put the Krell to my desktop system...
 

 
Dec 23, 2013 at 4:08 AM Post #5 of 93

money4me247

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booo! this thread is sexist. i want PEARLS for GIRLSSSS!!!!!!
 
Feb 14, 2014 at 2:35 AM Post #8 of 93

goldendarko

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How do you like the X's so far? Are they your first pair of Audeze's?
 
Feb 14, 2014 at 5:14 AM Post #9 of 93

musikaladin

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How do you like the X's so far? Are they your first pair of Audeze's?


It's my first LCD, but I had a LCD-3 for some days, borrowed from a friend. As such I am relatively well acquainted to it. To make it short, I prefer the X... even if it was not a love story all along... here my experience with the X and how I finally came closer to the sound I was looking for...
 
Feb 14, 2014 at 1:43 PM Post #11 of 93

Androb

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Amazing stuff! Loving the vinyl :D
 
Any short comparison of the LCD-X vs Akg k1000?
 
Feb 15, 2014 at 5:00 AM Post #12 of 93

musikaladin

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 Amazing stuff! Loving the vinyl :D
 
Any short comparison of the LCD-X vs Akg k1000?


sure, here the two contenders...
 

 
...to the right the veteran AKG K-1000...
 

 
 
 
...and to the left the newcomer LCD-X...
 

 
 
Since both have been reviewed comprehensively I will just focus on the differences between the two cans, at some points referencing both of them back to my Focal Solo 6 active studio speakers with the support of a Velodyne subwoofer.
 
Transparency / Resolution: All over the audible bandwidth resolution is on a high level with both cans, whereas the LCD-X has a certain winning-margin to the K-1000. In detail, for low- mid- and high- range, this means:
 
Low-Range: The LCD-x has a far deeper bass compared to the K-1000. The reason seems mainly to be in the K-1000's open design (in this context I am not referring to the open back, but the open sides, where the LCD-X is well closed) Actually the K-1000 has to fight a acoustical short-circuit. The positive and negative pressure-fields created inside and outside of the driver are kind of eliminating each other. This cancellation-effect increases with lower frequencies and higher distance to the driver and is also depending on the size of the membrane.
So why can we here any deep bass at all? Simply because on it's way from inside to outside and vise-versa, the pressure field is passing by the ear and this is what you actually hear (similar to dipole subwoofers). Still, the mentioned relation to frequency and distance remains, and as such the driver of the K-100 would simply have to migrate far too much in order to produce the same sound-pressure as the LCD-X in the lowest frequencies. Also the resolution (the precision with which the membrane can follow the signal) seems slightly better with the LCD-X. I guess this is owed to it's orthodynamic driver and it's supposedly lower mass. As I wrote here to me the X's bass is rather like physically experienced alternating pressure-fields... amazing!
 
Mid-Range: This is the domain of the K-1000. Very much focused, very real-sounding and highly transparent. To me both are on par here concerning the resolution. But the K-1000 really focuses on the mid-range, whereas the LCD-X is rather "embedding" it between it's more pronounced low- and high-range.
 
High-Range: Here the LCD-X's resolution seems superior. But I have to notice, that I am not sure in how far this is owed to the fact that the K-1000's treble is rather recessed in comparison to the LCD-X what makes the LCD-X's high range better audible (what also could lead to the effect of supposed better resolution), or whether the LCD-X membrane really follows the signals more precisely.
 
This is leading us to the  Sound-Stage both cans create: This might be the biggest surprise when comparing them. When you just look at them, I guess you easily might come to the conclusion that the AKG, due to it's open design, also sounds much more open. Not at all. The opposite is the case. The AKG is much more focused and creates the sound-space rather inside your head whereas the LCD-X is projecting it more to the outside (as far as a headphone is able to). This effect is strongly audible when you close your eyes. To me this effect seems to be independent from the construction principles of those phones, but rather owed to their different frequency-responses. The K-1000's emphasis on the mid-range of the music is creating this focus-effect whereas the LCD-X's comparably pronounced and extended frequency extremes lead to this wide and open spaciousness. This effect with the LCD-X is similar to what I can experience with my Focal speakers and their Beryllium tweeters. They already create a dramatically open sound with a wide and deep stage, and when then turning on the subwoofer the space opens up even much further...
 
Whether all such effects described are owed to different basic-materials that material-science might have come up with along the recent years, or to the different driver technology (dynamic with voice-coil vs. ortho-dynamic) or to the totally different design approaches (sides open vs. closed).... I do not know. I guess it is a cumulation of all such factors.
 
Conclusion: If I had to decide between both (the old lonely island question) I would prefer the LCD-X. But as long as I can keep them both I will keep both.
And since I own the LCD-X there were still quite a number of occasions where I preferred using the K-1000. I could not even tell you whether I prefer the LCD-X or the K-1000 depending on the music genre. The decision to use the K-1000 is rather a question of mood. And then the K-1000 is still doing a great job.
 
Just one thing I really wonder: How would a new K-1000 version sound? ...if AKG had all the latest materials and computer simulation software to it's disposal....
 
Now, that could be a totally different story then....
wink_face.gif
 
 
Feb 15, 2014 at 11:05 AM Post #13 of 93

Androb

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Oh awesome :) I actually thought the Akg would be the best but isn't, that's amazing! But yeah a new k1000 would be cool, seeing as akg are one of the companies with some of the biggest potential, could probably make it even better. It got a cool design aswell!
 
Feb 16, 2014 at 4:40 PM Post #15 of 93

TwoEars

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Fantastic little setup you've got there!
 
Great mix of old and new and every part picked with care!
 
Always fun to read left-field comparisons as well! There was a car magazine that used to do that long time ago. They did S-class against skoda, hummer against lada, and jeep vs ferrari. Those test were a ball to read lol!
 

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