W2002 bass or no baas?
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halcyon

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Another silly question from a headphone novice.

Kelly stated in his W2002 review that:

"In the lowest frequencies, the W2002 substitutes some air pressure for true bass notes. Audibly, the W2002 CANNOT reproduce the same notes that the Sony V6/7506 or Etymotic ER-4S can produce. In fact, it's arguable whether they can reproduce what the Sennheiser HD600 can, given a good cable and a big amp."

Kelly was running his W2002 off Corda HA-1 (?)

Wheres markl stated that:

"If there is one aspect of the W2002's sound that deserves "special recognition", it's their bass response. Bass is very deep and full and more impactful than the R10 [...]"

MarkL was running his W2002 off Melos SHA-Gold headphone amp.

My simple question is:

Could this remarkable difference in the perception of amount of bass on W2002 be contributed to the amplifier differences? If so, what difference in amp attributes could explain this?

I'm not perhaps yet so easily convinced that it was merely a personal preference


Comments?

regards,
Halcyon
 
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joelongwood

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Quote:

Could this remarkable difference in the perception of amount of bass on W2002 be contributed to the amplifier differences?


Yes.
Quote:

If so, what difference in amp attributes could explain this?


No clue. But I'm sure someone here can explain it.
 
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andrzejpw

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I'm interested as well. Although I haven't heard the w2002, I've read here that it absolutely HATES tube amps. Markl was using a tube amp. . . right? Kelly was using a corda, which although a great amp, can't really compare to a melos.
 
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kelly

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Halcyon
Never, ever underestimate differences of preference.

If you read the thread attached to that review there is actually a rather colorful disagreement about the bass of the W2002--and some of the guys in that debate on the other side were using a stock Corda HA-1 just like I was.

Just to clarify my personal position:
It was only in the VERY lowest lows that the W2002 couldn't reproduce the audible note -- this I woudl imagine in the 20-40hz region. The Sennheiser HD600, which everyone loves and most people love the bass in, also has trouble with that area. Almost every headphone does with only a scant few exceptions (DT770, ER-4S, HP-1000, Stax).

For most listeners this would simply never be an issue. It was only with specific recordings that I was able to isolate the trouble spot and that's another big difference you should consider. Even with the exact same amp and headphone (and even similar sources), without a recordings and the same AB comparison, one cannot presume that my experience was capable of being identical to someone else's.

I did also try the W2002 on the Melos SHA-1 with stock Sovteks. Markl was using a Melos Gold at the time and I'm not sure of the tubes.
 
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markl

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Somwhere in one of my reviews, I noted that the w2002 doesn't seem to go any deeper than any other quality headphone I've heard (R10, CD3K, HD600, ER4S). But it has the DADs system, that I speculate acts to trap and release air which gives you the *feeling* of actual bass notes hitting your ear you get in the real world or with a sub woofer. I called this effect "ear massage" and found it a pleasant sensation.

So you aren't getting any lower notes than with other headphones, but you will get the physical sensation of the low-bass audio waves that other headphones don't give you.

Mark
 
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kelly

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As strange as it may seem to our regulars, I concur with Markl completely. The sensation is there and I think most anyone would like that. I'm probably one of only two or three people on Head-Fi who find bass pressure in the ears a little fatiguing.
 
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andrzejpw

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Kelly and Markl: both of you have very interesting takes on the w2002s. A question: what would you prefer, a w2002 or a cabled 580/600? Personally, I've found that with a cable upgrade(clou blue in my case) the bass extension and detail improved quite a bit. Do you think that the nature of the phones is holding the bass back, or could it be something else?
 
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markl

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No contest-- W2002.

A more interesting battle is between the w2002 and the CD3K. Still give the nod to the W2002, but not by much.

Mark
 
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andrzejpw

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Which amp are you using with the w2002s, still the melos? How about the cd3k, the emp?
 
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kelly

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andre
The W2002, as mentioned, didin't respond well to the RKV.

I liked the W2002 a lot on the Corda HA-1 but for very different reasons than the HD600/RKV. Ultimately the RKV outclassed the Corda HA-1 so much that my preference was for the HD600/RKV and that combined with my audition of other stuff made me decide to part ways with the W2002.

On other amps, it might have been different but my belief is that on any amp a signature would persist with the W2002 that I found somewhat distracting and I'd have probably moved on anyway--especially considering the price of the phone.
 
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markl

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I had my unmodified Melos Gold when I had the w2002. I now have a Gold that has internal parts upgrade to "Maestro" level.

Now, I'm still talking overall headphone performance, not just bass above. Overall, I preferred the W2002, not just in terms of bass.

An interesting side-note-- bkelly recently sent me his HD590s and HD600s (which I owned previously and got *phenomenal* head-splitting bass response with the EMP) for a shoot-out between the two as I had never heard the 590s (I ultimately liked the HD590 a little bit better, but that's another story contained in another thread here).

Long story short, I just couldn't believe how much *more* bass in terms of depth and impact I now get with my R10's through my Meastro than I got with either Sennheiser. (I'd never thought of the R10 as a bass-monster, although now I am mighty satisfied after all the cable/power cord/tube swapping I've done.) Yet, through my 0-ohm output Melos, designed with low-impedence phones like my R10 and grados in mind, I got squat for bass from the high-impedence HD590/600.

Yet the EMP bass-monster is seemingly unable to drive low-impedence headphones (at least it couldn't drive my Etys, others seem to have had luck with other cans) without clipping.

Moral of the story-- headphones do not exist in a vacuum--you need an amp to hear them. there is ever so much more to a headphone's bass response than you can deduce from how it reacts with any one amplifier. So summing up bass response of a particular phone is a very dicey and tricky prospect. Bottom line: YMMV.

Mark
 
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Quote:

Originally posted by kelly
Just to clarify my personal position:
It was only in the VERY lowest lows that the W2002 couldn't reproduce the audible note -- this I would imagine in the 20-40hz region.



To clear up the question about frequency reproduction, the Quad Mzximus cd from Bass Mekaniks has 4-5 second tones of every frequency from 10-100+Hz!! I tested my Senn 600s and found that they really didn't have any great bass that was audible until somewhere in the 30's. Anything below that and it just made a sound that was more felt than heard. This started at the 10Hz note and continued well into the 30's. I will give them another listen and see where the bass becomes hearable as well as felt.

I will try and do the same test on the new W1000 cans once I get them.
 
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kelly

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ServingEcuador's system is QUITE capable of producing adequate bass to the headphone jack, so I'd say his results are of a "best case" nature, here.
 
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W2002 works GREAT with my headmaster, it gives better detail and bass compare with my old headphone system (HD600 + MG-Head). I know it is hard to compare a $1700 system to $600 system. But it is what I feel and what I hear!!!
 
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About R-10 bass!

My experience with a lot of cans is that I never heard a perfect reproduction of bass region as I’m hearing with the R-10/R-10H. I think that when you are testing a cans and in your first listening you notice and you say: “Wow!!! Very impact bass in this headphone!!!”, you are not hearing the “real” bass as in the recording is, but a technical work of the cans. The R-10 is the only headphone that reproduce all the quality of the bass: no exaggerated, no “slam”, no aseptic, but “realistic” bass presentation. You have the perfect impression of the deepest bass only when this is really present in the recording, I tell this because some cans have a sort of “bass continue” or a disproportion impact of the bass. The R-10 (and when I speak of the R-10 I’m consider his R-10H amp combo) has the capacity of a very equilibrated, harmonic and natural bass, a full body bass that respects the entire spectrum.

Nicola
 
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