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About HiWire

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    Member of the Trade: Oppo Digital Marketing
  • Birthday 07/30/1976

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  1. Why do I think steaming pile when I see streaming?
  2. HiWire

    Deluxe Flat Pads for Grado Headphones

    The other effect of getting new pads is that I can safely turn the volume up a little higher. The old pads had lost so much material and volume that I think I was squashing them closer to my ears to get a good fit. The new pads definitely feel thicker and softer and there is a little more space between the drivers and my ears now. The HP-2 also stay more firmly on my head, requiring much less fiddling to get perfectly comfortable. So I listened to The Cars (1978) HDCD tonight. It's an album I know really well, and the effect is more than placebo. I did turn the volume up a little bit, but there were things I hadn't noticed before and overall I was enjoying the album more than I expected, thinking I'd been overplaying it. The first thing I noticed was that Ric Ocasek and Benjamin Orr's voices were a lot clearer and more upfront – I had always found them too distant and indistinct before. The other obvious improvement is the soundstage. It doesn't get any bigger but stereo pans and reverb are well integrated, and the arrangement of the physical instruments (or the engineer's arrangement) is precise and realistic where it was hazy before. The crescendo on the last track, All Mixed Up, gets loud, but the instruments stay separated instead of colliding in a noisy muddle like they did before. Drums and basslines are more urgent, timing seems tighter, and rhythm is more prominent. The HP-2 are fun again. I really enjoyed the guitar solo bit at the end of Bye Bye Love, which I had never noticed before. It was clear as day with the new pads. Treble rolloff is gone and voices and tones sound richer and more natural. I'm a happy camper. I'd been slowly becoming more and more dissatisfied with the sound of my system, and I guess part of the problem was the steady deterioration of the pads. A few months ago, I noticed that holes had opened up on the rim where my ears were touching the inside of the metal cups. Turning up the volume didn't help much, either – it was the same flat, lifeless sound, but amplified. I think the new pads are focusing the sound of the drivers where the old pads were "leaking" the sound. Do not underestimate the effect of the right pads on HP-2s. More to come. Old pads:
  3. HiWire

    Deluxe Flat Pads for Grado Headphones

    I received a set of the Deluxe Flat Pads yesterday (as well as a set of regular Flat Pads – hedging my bets). They look identical to the regular flat pads, except they have a small silver marking on the inside edge to distinguish them. I only had time to listen to one track this morning (from The Cars, naturally) – it did sound really good. I'm looking forward to a lot of re-listening in the next couple of days. I was a bit dissatisfied with the sound from my Grado HP-2 recently, and I wonder if it was because the pads weren't "sealing" anymore.
  4. HiWire

    RIP someone or another

    Too early. RIP.
  5. HiWire

    Ye Macce Threade

    I might take this as an opportunity to get a sweet Razer DeathAdder Elite, then. I've been using the older DeathAdder Chroma quite happily on my home computer for a few years. The Logitech m325 looks great too and I'm also tempted by the Logitech MX Anywhere 2S (if I can find it on sale). I started buying Logitech K380 keyboards to replace my coworkers' broken Apple keyboards, but they discontinued all the cool colors as soon as I discovered them.
  6. HiWire

    Ye Macce Threade

    I backgraded (for app compatibility reasons) to macOS Sierra 10.12 this week and my 10-year old Bluetooth Apple Mouse is freezing intermittently now. I've got a newer Magic Mouse connected via Bluetooth and it doesn't have the same problem, but I hate that this seems to have been a problem for years (I did all the fixes – NVRAM and SMC reset, dumped the Bluetooth .plist, and reset the Bluetooth system, pulled external monitor and USB hub, disabled Handoff, etc.). I'm hoping that upgrading to a newer macOS version someday will fix whatever is wrong with my Mighty Mouse. It was working perfectly on another computer running the same version of macOS last week. The MacBook's trackpad is working perfectly well, too.
  7. I just started playing this game last week and I have to say it's pretty amazing. It really reminds me of the classic Need for Speed games (Most Wanted, particularly – the first one). I didn't know there was an in-car view... that's what put me off the game when it was released. The graphics and physics are pretty good for an arcade racer. I'm looking forward to getting more cars and leaving Rookie status behind... life is all about money and rep. Also, the soundtrack is entertaining for the period. If you follow cars, this game will really date itself (2008). A lot of the cars (like the Cadillac XLR-V) are long extinct.
  8. HiWire

    What are you listening to Part the Third

    Re: the Cocteau Twins – I've owned Milk & Kisses and Heaven or Las Vegas for years, but I've been meaning to check out their earlier albums forever. I'm glad the store that I visited has an eclectic selection. In the House of Strange Affairs – My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult
  9. HiWire

    What are you listening to Part the Third

    Visited the music store... got a few discs I'd been wanting: Black Messiah – D'Angelo and the Vanguard Treasure – Cocteau Twins Beat My Distance – Anemone
  10. HiWire

    Head Case Motorsports

    Here's another favorite of mine, the Lexus LC500. I fell in love with the Lexus LF-LC concept that was shown in 2012, and the production version is pretty close to the concept. I really hope the rumored F Sport version loses literally a ton of weight and adds a manual transmission. https://youtu.be/2NgROUQZNVM
  11. HiWire

    What are you listening to Part the Third

    III – The Grassy Knoll One of my favorite bands. This one is more relaxed-sounding than their first two albums. If you enjoyed some of Angelo Badalamenti's jazzier work in David Lynch's projects (Lost Highway, particularly), you might love The Grassy Knoll.
  12. Emoticons are the best! They make up for all the inadequacies of our language:
  13. HiWire

    What are you listening to Part the Third

    Sea Change – Beck I need to pick up more of his albums. Odelay is excellent and I've been planning to get Mellow Gold and Mutations forever. Then I'll check out his newer stuff.
  14. HiWire

    What are you reading now?

    Have you watched The Man in the High Castle (Amazon)? I read the book, but haven't watched the show.
  15. HiWire

    What are you listening to Part the Third

    We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic – Foxygen I think this album is much better than their 5th album, Hang. The songs have more energy, cohesiveness, and authentic emotion. Also, for Foxygen, this album shows some restraint where their later albums crossed a line somewhere.