The Official Headphone Thread 2.5: We're Making WAVs and Catching FLAC

Read somewhere that Audeze buy chinese OEM drivers and just stick em into wood rings they make themselves, for the LCDs. Is this true?
Rather get zmf orignals instead if that's the case. Zach actually puts in the work.
If true probably why Monoprice has copied their designs with no repercussions.
 
Massdrop x Noble K10 sold out their 350 units in 20 hours. Each cost $900.

Massdrop Plus Universal IEM sold 104 units in 30 hours so far. Each cost $300.

The K10s are that good? It cost 3x the price, and it sold way more than Massdrop Plus. I'm regretting not ordering the K10 for $900. :/
 
Thing is, even at $900 you know what you are getting. That thing has a ton of reviews, most very positive. The Massdrop IEM not so much though, only 1 or 2 people has them though they have praised them.

Also, I hate that fact early reviews of Massdrop products tend to be hidden on some forum. And a lot of them have a vagueness about them IMO.
 
Thing is, even at $900 you know what you are getting. That thing has a ton of reviews, most very positive. The Massdrop IEM not so much though, only 1 or 2 people has them though they have praised them.

Also, I hate that fact early reviews of Massdrop products tend to be hidden on some forum. And a lot of them have a vagueness about them IMO.
What Massdrop products turned out to be letdowns/disappointments?

I know the Sennheiser HD 6XX were great, I don't know of the others such as AKG 7XX.
 
What Massdrop products turned out to be letdowns/disappointments?

I know the Sennheiser HD 6XX were great, I don't know of the others such as AKG 7XX.
None for me really. Everything I have bought from them I really like and have no regrets I bought. But with some of these new drops there is vagueness mixed in with the praise I think. Hardly nothing on build quality and and you seemingly have to keeping prodding some of these early reviewers for comparisons to other popular products from manufactures like say Schiit or even comparisons to the original versions of some of these products. And what has changed with this collaboration that Massdrop might not be telling us about? For instance their amp collaboration with Alex Cavalli, on the site they basically say it is based on the same design but on the Head Fi forums where some were pissed they paid hundreds more I saw a post where he seemingly tried to assure them they are not quite the same.
 


Design looks pretty much the same but I hate that they put the logo on the grill. The $500-$700 segment is heating up again. Cant wait for reviews.
 


Design looks pretty much the same but I hate that they put the logo on the grill. The $500-$700 segment is heating up again. Cant wait for reviews.
Yeah. I've been looking for a deal on the hd650 (missed the 6xx drop). If these review well I'll be auditioning for sure.

I'm struggling to decipher exactly which cables are included. There's a picture of the 6.35mm jack with a 3.5mm adapter. Sounds like maybe one of the new 4.4mm balanced cables as well.
 

Antiwhippy

the holder of the trombone
I wish I had your budget. I had trouble deciding whether to cough up $900.

Do sounds differ based on cup choices?
Yeah, but the teak cups differ the most because the inside of the cups are actually shaped differently, not just due to the wood type. Otherwise there is change but not super drastic.

The teak cups from what I know is the most liquid and balanced of the cup variants, meaning the bass isn't as pronounced as the other fostex variants (but it still slams, trust me), but it tames the harshness and brings out the liquid mids more.

It effectively stopped me hunting for kilobuck headphones lol.
 
Question: would an amp having 4-way speaker output (such as for banana plugs) be considered a Balanced output if used with a Balanced 4-way banana to 4-pin XLR cable? Or would it depend on the amp chip? I'm asking for the SMSL AD18 DAC/AMP.
 
https://www.massdrop.com/buy/massdrop-sennheiser-hd6xx?mode=guest_open

Massdrop Sennheiser HD 6XX headphones are up! Est Ship time before Xmas.
Lmfao, what? This is like the 3rd time this year. Can't believe I rushed on the first one to only see this come around again with the basically the same ship date. (18th vs 20th)

EDIT: Just read the pinned post, not so salty about it now lol.

For everyone waiting on a 6XX shipment, the first units are completing production and will begin the journey from Ireland to our NJ warehouse in the next couple weeks. If everything continues as planned, we should begin shipping orders in early/mid November about a month before the original expected ship date of 12/18/17.
 
Question: would an amp having 4-way speaker output (such as for banana plugs) be considered a Balanced output if used with a Balanced 4-way banana to 4-pin XLR cable? Or would it depend on the amp chip? I'm asking for the SMSL AD18 DAC/AMP.
You just can't convert a single-ended amp in a balanced one just wiring it certain way, it has to do with its topology (the actual internal design).
 
Lmfao, what? This is like the 3rd time this year. Can't believe I rushed on the first one to only see this come around again with the basically the same ship date. (18th vs 20th)
The similar ship date and massive difference in the order date makes me reconsider ordering the Massdrop Plus Universal IEMs.

I should cancel Massdrop Plus Universal IEMs and re order them later.
 
Geez. Once again I am considering the 6XX’s when I already have the 2.5mm 400i’s.

I wonder though if the regular 650’s will have a noticeable Black Friday sale this year because of the 660S’s coming out?
 
I wish I had your budget. I had trouble deciding whether to cough up $900.

Do sounds differ based on cup choices?
I keep going back and forth. I've been talking with Zach at ZMF about his offerings and from what I've read, both of his existing closed options (Eikon, Atticus)are probably better sounding than my D7000s. While I'm happy with my D7000s and don't plan on retiring them, I've been longing for something with less recessed mid vocals. Female voices in the upper mids, for example, sound like they're behind the band compared to other headhones I was able to A/B demo (Audeze LCD-3). I want to keep a similar sort of warmth and bass presence, but without recessing the mids. I'm currently down to:

ZMF Atticus (rave reviews, maybe best bass of the group I'm considering, warmest of the group?)
ZMF Eikon (rave reviews, good bass presence, more neutral)
ZMF Auteur (Not out until this time next month)
LCD-X (mostly great reviews supposedly similar sound to LCD-3, 30 day trial with no restocking fee)
LCD-3 (have actually heard this one and loved the sound compared to my D7000s, 30 day trial with no restocking fee)
EM-U Teak's (rave reviews, but not sure if they would be different enough from my Lawton modded D7000s to justify the move)

Though posters here have made me worry about the longevity of the LCD series and some have said the LCD-X to be a poor value at its currently discounted price, so I don't know if I want to even go that route anymore. Though with an easy return policy, I might just buy some and evaluate on my own. Unfortunately, ZMF's restocking fee is 25% which means I'd need to resell them instead of return them. That makes me less comfortable. And of course, there is no way to demo them. That alone makes me gravitate towards the Audeze's.

Probably going to buy the LCD-X's. I know what the LCD-3's sound like, so if I don't like the X sound, I can just send them back and either go with one of the ZMF's or step up in price to the LCD-3. Seems to be the safest route. But I continue to meditate on it as I have been for the last few weeks.
 
No consideration for the LCD2C? Might be a better buy than both the LCD-3 and LCD-X as you can get a similar sound and save a few hundred dollars.
 
I saw those as well. Would the LCD-2C's be considered a good upgrade to my 400i's?
I owned the 400i for a good while but I honestly could not tell you as I've never had the LCD-2. That said, I have seen many 400i comparisons to the Monolith M1060 with many preferring the M1060 which is said to be on par with at least the LCD-2. So make of that what you will.

Also, Hifiman is actually coming out with what is said to be an upgrade to the 400i/s called the Sundara. Should be released soon but there is not much information on it.
 
The Focal Clear are so ridiculously beautiful, and I fucking love that it comes with a case and every cable you could want.

Ordered the Focal Elear before these were announced against my better judgment and more-so due to the fact I was able to get them for $600 new, but I cancelled after seeing these. Ugh, I want them but I could probably pick up the new HD660S, LCD2C and AEON from MrSpeakers which I have really wanted to try, all for the price of the Clear. What a year for headphones.
 
No consideration for the LCD2C? Might be a better buy than both the LCD-3 and LCD-X as you can get a similar sound and save a few hundred dollars.
I had considered the 2C but not sure about its sound signature.

Anyone considering Audeze should wait for these new models that are starting to come out. LCD2C, LCD Pro, LCD MX4, etc. The current lineup is poor value and not very resolving headphones.
Do we have an ETA on them? If it's past mid November I'm just going to say "fuck it" and get the Auteurs.
 
Anyone considering Audeze should wait for these new models that are starting to come out. LCD2C, LCD Pro, LCD MX4, etc. The current lineup is poor value and not very resolving headphones.
 
I owned the 400i for a good while but I honestly could not tell you as I've never had the LCD-2. That said, I have seen many 400i comparisons to the Monolith M1060 with many preferring the M1060 which is said to be on par with at least the LCD-2. So make of that what you will.

Also, Hifiman is actually coming out with what is said to be an upgrade to the 400i/s called the Sundara. Should be released soon but there is not much information on it.
That seems like a stupid comparison when one side of headphones are super warm and the other much more balanced and linear.
 
in your experience, which brands in the $1k-$2k range represent an acceptable value?
For full size headphones: ZMF Atticus and Eikon (Auteur will likely end up on this list). Sennheiser hd800/800S. Focal Utopia if you got a good dealer and will get you a significant discount (but is still more than $2k). Hifiman he-6 (only available used and requires a beefy power amp). Hifiman he1000 if you can find one cheap and realize they have shoddy quality control (I wouldn't bother).

Audeze headphones (minus the 4 as I haven't heard it) are just too overpriced and are beaten by headphones costing half as much. I do look forward to trying the new non fazored models they have coming though.
 
Understood, gentlemen. I'll focus my attention on the Atticus, Eikon and Auteur.

I'll keep MrSpeakers on my peripheral vision as well, though my understanding is that his Flow line don't have very inspiring bass response.

I guess I just thought I needed planars to reach the next level of sound reproduction. I need to get that out of my head, I suppose. I've just seen so many glowing reviews of the LCD-X's (eg: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7PveOboMyw4 and http://www.theabsolutesound.com/articles/audeze-lcd-x-headphones/) that GAF being so down on them is making me so confused.

Does the "value" proposition not change at all given they are 30% ($500) off? Just want to be sure that even then their "value" is weak compared to the ZMF options. Sorry I keep asking; I just want to make a good decision here. Thank you for your patience.
 
Auteur is supposed to be some sort of HD600/650-sequel hybrid. Which is interesting cause Senn supposedly has the HD660 coming out which will be a refinement on the HD650. Then there's the Focal Clear which is in a similar wheelhouse. I dunno... given the price of the Auteur maybe it makes sense to wait for the HD660. The Auteur is gorgeous, but the 650 is still a giant in the headphone world all these years later, so it stands to reason that a (reasonably priced) 660 will pack some serious bang for the buck