I bought one of these and got them on Tuesday. Been spending a lot of time with them since then, I ordered with both pairs of pads. Some thoughts:
The stock pads are irredeemably garbage sounding to me, the bass is off, the midrange is simultaneously forward and recessed (way too much 1Khz and not enough 2-4Khz) and there is way too much treble in the 8-10Khz range. I legitimately had a hard time listening to these. I'm sure some people will like these but this is reminiscent of the SR-507 in terms of how forward/thin it sounds (not a good thing). With these pads? Not a fan.
The other pads I ordered which are the ones the creator says has the more laid-back nature is much more to my preference. It is somewhat more forward in the midrange than 007 (which I think is a good thing, 007 lacks a bit of energy between 2-4Khz for me), but I would not call it particularly shouty. It certainly is less shouty than something like the 404LE for instance. With these pads the treble also becomes fantastic, very similar to 007 treble to my ears. Bass was a mixed bag, when I first got them I felt like they were lacking a bit of slam/impact despite going very deep/having good rumble (much like 009S). Over time I feel like the bass has improved in this regard. I think burn-in is a hot load of garbage (other than minor changes in thiele-small parameters) so the more likely answer is the pads softening up a bit. Overall I really like the headphone with these pads, it's what the 009S should have been in my opinion.
It seems like a good counterpoint to the 007 if using the dark pads. Slightly more forward, but with a bigger stage than the slightly more intimate feeling 007.
Some annoyances: pad attachment uses rivets similar to SR-Omega. Not a huge issue but kind of scary to work with since the dust cover is basically exposed to the screwdriver you use to remove the rivets. Also means it takes a while to remove the pads. The pads do sit on very nicely once attached though. This headphone is also heavy, I have no issue with 700+ grams of weight but I know the approx. 650 grams this headphone weighs is gonna be too much for a lot of people. It's still more comfortable than 007 for me due to the fact that my head is too large for 007 (headband rests against the arc) but I don't think this will be the case for the vast majority of people.
Currently this costs about the same as L700mk2 and between those 2 picking this one (with dark pads) is a no-brainer to me. Pretty stellar headphone overall, definitely a keeper.
From the pictures this looks like the "dark" pads due to the round ear opening and the higher quality leather.