World of Headphones Tour Philadelphia
post-144401
Thread Starter
Post #1 of 8

JML

1000+ Head-Fier
Joined
Oct 26, 2001
Messages
1,200
Reaction score
157
Joined
Oct 26, 2001
Posts
1,200
Likes
157
I'm glad the tour stopped here and I had a chance (albeit all too brief) to hear items I'd never otherwise be able to listen to, or merely see in all their glory.

First, the very best thing was having a chance to meet Tyll Hertsens and talk with him at length. I'm tempted to say that he provided the best sound at the show! Tyll is clearly in love with headphones, and is one of those rare people who has the opportunity to combine his work and play. He's genuine, enthusiastic, and an all-around good guy. He even listens to people, which is a pretty rare quality these days, or in this field.

It was also great to meet DCG, a fellow Head-Fier, who was lucky enough to be selected to work this stop of the tour. It got pretty crowded as the night wore on, and harder to listen quietly or for extended periods without feeling as if I was preventing others from getting a chance at things.

The best electronic sound? For me, it was provided by the Senn Orpheus, the Blockhead & balanced HD-600, and the Cary & HD-600. The Blockhead's balanced circuitry is definitely a major leap forward -- and I hope that it's the harbinger of things to come (and hopefully for less money!). We should have a new slogan: "Down With the Common Return!" The new Stereophile review is an understatement, folks.

The Orpheus is, well, stunning. I could have listened to her all night, if everyone left her alone with me! The Cary sounded great with the HD-600 and with the ATH-W100, but I could only listen briefly. But the Blockhead is unique among amps. The veils stripped away with that amp and the rewired HD-600 are always there with the other amps.

I brought my ATH-W100, and let Tyll have a listen. The man's a quick study, and likes 'em (he kept raving about the build quality, and liked the sound). He's a diehard Senn HD-600 fan, however; but I wish he could have listened longer, with more stuff he's familiar with.

Funny thing is that I now have no interest in other cans. My ATH-W100 and MDR-F1 are quite good enough, with my Corda HA-1, to put to rest any ideas of any "minor" upgrades for quite a long time (at least until I win the lottery and my wife doesn't care that I might be spending money we otherwise need for the other necessities of life).

EDIT -- ADDED LATER...

I purposely did not read the other Tour postings until I went to my local stop. So I just read 'em tonight.

Briefly, I also thought the Sonys were awful. I A/B'd 'em with my ATH-W100. Twice, because I own an MDR-F1 and MDR-V6. Either something was wrong with them, or they were mismatched with the amps or what was feeding them, or they are just awful. Reverberant and thin. I was quite surprised.

The K-1000 was a nice experience. The imaging is similar to the F1, actually (and not surprisingly). Cohesive and clear, and I can understand why some folks love them, but it was hard to get any bottom out of them compared to the other babies on that rack. The other models from Austria didn't make me yearn for any of them. And they do look weird... Sorry, folks.

The Stax I heard aren't worth the space or typing. And to think I used to own SR-44s...

The Beyers, well, weren't in the running given what I already own and what else I heard.

I didn't listen much to the Grados. I can get them locally, and generally find them very uncomfortable and forward-sounding. The one plugged into the toaster wasn't bad, though. But the toaster didn't belong on that rack with the other big boys. Sorry, Vka.

However, the conditions were less than ideal, and several of the phones on display had clearly seen better days and nights. Some of the Senn HD-580 and -600 models were extremely loose fitting. Demo units lead a rough life. It could account for some of what I/we heard (on the other hand, some other demo units really did shine, so maybe it might reflect overall sturdiness).

Overall, the Cary combo is fun. The Orpheus is bewitching. The Blockhead combo is an eye-opener.
 
     Share This Post       
post-144443
Post #2 of 8

bootman

King o'Ping
Joined
Jun 22, 2001
Messages
3,308
Reaction score
10
Joined
Jun 22, 2001
Posts
3,308
Likes
10
Quote:

Originally posted by JML
Briefly, I also thought the Sonys were awful.


Be careful with what you say.
Team Sony might read this and take over this thread too.


[size=xx-small](Now ducks behinds his CD1700s)[/size]
 
     Share This Post       
post-144483
Post #4 of 8

andrzejpw

May one day invent Bose-cancelling headphones.
Joined
Jun 25, 2001
Messages
6,636
Reaction score
10
Joined
Jun 25, 2001
Posts
6,636
Likes
10
Philadelphia! That means they're getting closer to Pittsburgh, PA!


June 23rd. . . June 23rd. . .
 
     Share This Post       
post-144523
Post #5 of 8

JML

1000+ Head-Fier
Joined
Oct 26, 2001
Messages
1,200
Reaction score
157
Joined
Oct 26, 2001
Posts
1,200
Likes
157
Bootman, I own three Sony cans! I was a fan of the F1 when I had almost no company and caught some flames (now I have some company, thankfully). I've had the V6 for 14 years (but now my son owns them with Beyer pads). I yielded to Vertigo and got the A44L, but they're just for casual use with a radio...

I was really surprised. But enough about the Sonys.

But if I'm tempting other team responses, I thought the W100 and the HD-600 were on a par with each other until the HD-600 was balanced and connected to that Blockhead. Not enough time spent listening for a critical review of either with the multitude of amps present, but enough to know they are in the same league for sound quality, even though they each usually prefer different amps because of the impedance differnces (48 vs. 300). I wish I had listened to the W100 longer with the Cary, but I didn't have the chance to listen to more than a few minutes on two cuts, and I don't intend to buy a new tubed amp anyway. The bottom was different from what I'm used to with the Corda, but it was a really romantic combination in the midrange. Lush is the word.
 
     Share This Post       
post-144777
Post #6 of 8

Tomcat

1000+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 26, 2001
Messages
1,273
Reaction score
11
Joined
Jun 26, 2001
Posts
1,273
Likes
11
Quote:

Originally posted by JML
But if I'm tempting other team responses, I thought the W100 and the HD-600 were on a par with each other


Well, now you're tempting team responses. On par with each other - this amounts to blatant W100 bashing.


Thanks for your impressions, btw, and thanks for alerting Tyll to the ATs. It would be nice if he started carrying some Japanese AT models.

I have never heard it, but I am not convinced that the Blockhead-HD600 combo would be right for me. You know, I just love lush and romantic.
 
     Share This Post       
post-144923
Post #7 of 8

bootman

King o'Ping
Joined
Jun 22, 2001
Messages
3,308
Reaction score
10
Joined
Jun 22, 2001
Posts
3,308
Likes
10
If you want that lush tube sound the MG Head OTL is a nice little amp. I really liked it in OTL mode. I can see why it has so many fans.
 
     Share This Post       
post-144973
Post #8 of 8

JML

1000+ Head-Fier
Joined
Oct 26, 2001
Messages
1,200
Reaction score
157
Joined
Oct 26, 2001
Posts
1,200
Likes
157
Tomcat, Tyll wants to carry the AT cans -- he heard another set at another stop (seemed to be the W11R or the W2002 -- all he remembered was that the wood was redder than my W100). He said (and I am paraphrasing) that he'd love to carry them if he could figure out a legitimate way to import them with the full support of AT.

He was surprised they were so good, thought they were very comfortable (after he put them on backwards and I corrected him), and understood why people liked them. He did say he wished he could listen more with music he was familiar with. He opined that the AT cans and the Cary would be a really "romantic setup."

I thought of you when I plugged the W100 into the Cary. I think the bass was looser than with the Corda, but couldn't listen to enough familiar music to make any definitive judgment.

I would not call the Blockhead & HD-600 romantic or lush! But the increased transparency reminded me of why I like the W100 over the HD-600 with lesser amps. The Orpheus is what I kept going back to, however, listening and looking at the $12,000 price on the description.
 
     Share This Post       

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Top