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Everything posted by nnotis

  1. Tyll, my usage of the term "brightness" is relative. Relative to the Pico, the D12 is tipped up with more prominent highs, less prominent lows. There's nothing inherently bad about that. I couldn't find any information present in one unit that was missing from the other. I don't have measuring tools to determine for certain which one is closer to neutral though. I've been a Pico DAC/Amp owner for about three years now. I won't be getting a D12 for myself because it's not an upgrade from the Pico, but rather, a lateral move. It should be a great fit for my work buddy though, as he's going to be using it with JH-16s, which would probably be WAY too bassy with a Pico. But then again, JH-16s are for the bass thirsty among us.
  2. I haven’t seen anything about the Ibasso D12 on this site. When my friend at work ordered one, I did a search and found nothing. I apologize if this is a duplicate thread. So let me briefly discuss my direct comparison between it and the Pico Dac/Amp combo that I made while borrowing the D12 for two days. I only used the USB input for both. And I didn’t make any attempt to isolate the DAC from the amp in either model. I only used the stock op amp in the D12. All comparisons were made using my JH-13s. The D12 is larger in all dimensions, making it considerably less portable. But it does offer a lot of features the Pico doesn’t. Like the D10, it has toslink and SPDIF digital inputs in addition to USB. It also doesn’t need an AC adapter, as it can charge from its USB connection. There’s a great little switch on the back that lets the USB user turn the charging on or off. So one needs not worry about killing the battery by overcharging it. If the battery isn’t yet charged, a little red light will be lit, as with the Pico. The D12 is brighter than the Pico. Bass is less prominent, treble is more so. The difference is within the margins of my own preference on a given day. I can’t say for sure which one is closer to neutral. Neither one sounded better at any particular performance attribute than the other. The brighter signature might give the sense that the D12 is more detailed, but I found this not to be so. On the other hand, the Pico might at first seem to have a deeper soundstage. But this is just the darker signature making everything sound a little further back. I recall some people claiming that the D10 had a noticeable coloration to it. I never got the sense that the D12 suffers from this. Of course, this might be the sort of thing that doesn’t register in only days of listening, but rather months. As of now, I’d say that the D12 is a lateral move from the Pico DAC/Amp. If the toslink and SPDIF inputs perform at least as well as the USB, then it offers considerably more flexibility at the expense of added size. It’s also a lot less expensive than the Pico, so I’d call it a good value too. One geek bonus point I should make, is that the D12 doesn’t force a single sample rate, and can handle 24 bit files. I assume that this is only of use when connecting with toslink or SPDIF. But it’s nice to know that 24 bit files don’t necessarily get truncated. And I’m rather partial to setting the sample rate to X2 of the file’s rate when listening to 44.1 or 48 Khz files. One can do this with the D12.
  3. nnotis

    Audeze LCD-2

    I’ve been listening to both of these headphones almost every day since getting my LCD-2s in October. I agree with much of what elnero said. But I come to the opposite conclusion regarding speed and treble clarity. While less prominent, the LCD-2s reveal high frequencies with a tiny bit of extra resolution. They parse out complexity and reveal texture with greater clarity. The JH-13s have a relative softness about their highs. That makes them more forgiving of recordings for me. I feel the same regarding imaging, which is even more pinpoint on the LCD-2s. I’ve caught quite a few stereo field cues with them that I’d missed elsewhere. Take my comparisons with a grain of salt however, as I find both of these headphones to be faster and more detailed than the HD800s and K1000s. That’s not something many seem to agree with.
  4. nnotis

    Audeze LCD-2

    I'd be shocked if they didn't work beautifully with the GS-X. To my ears, even the Pico DAC/Amp almost has enough grunt. It does lose a little bit of impact when compared to your old Beta22. But the difference is surprisingly small.
  5. nnotis

    Audeze LCD-2

    Smeggy, I wish I could have made it. I’ve got 6 month old twin babies right now, and they’re a pain in the ass, albeit cute as hell. They should be a lot more coherent by the next meet, which will make me feel less guilty leaving them with my wife. Seeing pictures from the meet was a real slap in the face. It looked to have been one of the best outside of Canjam. Back to the LCD-2s, I think I do like them better out of my DA10/Beta22 combo than from the Pico DAC/amp. My hunch is that the former’s brighter signature is a little closer to neutral, but it’s hard to say without a tone test. I also think the big rig delivers more impact. But the fact I have to say these things with uncertainty is awesome. I can’t overstate the convenience of around the house portability. I’d be curious to read how others here find they compare to the top end dynamics. Am I the only one who finds them faster and more resolving?
  6. nnotis

    Audeze LCD-2

    The small soundstage and relative absence of treble boost make the JH-13s less overt with detail than most phones. But once my brain sunk into them and accepted that little headstage, I found I was hearing high frequency synthetic textures in some of my own mixes that were more obscure with the K1000s. But for all I know, with the right speaker amp, those textures would be better clarified on the K1Ks, even if a wee bit grainy. I guess I'll never know, as I sold them to fund the LCD-2 purchase. While I'm happy with the trade off, I'll surely miss that amazingly vast horizontal soundstage. They were fun as hell to listen to. I'm curious to hear what you think of the LCD-2s on your system Blessingx.
  7. nnotis

    Audeze LCD-2

    I’ve had a pair of LCD-2s for about two weeks now. Here are some thoughts: It was great to discover that they don’t need the kind of power some people have claimed. Driven by my Pico DAC/amp, they sound almost as good as they do from my DA10/Beta22. Differences in upstream component signature are evident, but they’re probably as resolving and well balanced out of the Pico. That makes them around the house portable, a fantastic bonus. I don’t find them problematically dark. But I can imagine those used to a bump around 7 kHz might. Some reviews on head-fi conclude the HD-800s to be more detailed than the LCD-2s. In my experience, the K1000s and HD800s are amazingly close in terms of detail retrieval (minus the K1000 bass roll off). The JH-13s are a step above both, exposing a grainy veil that all dynamics probably suffer from. The LCD-2 are another step up, outperforming the JH-13s. I can peer even deeper into a mix. Every texture is a little clearer, every complexity a little better parsed out. I find them extremely comfortable, but my head is very small. Most headphones fall off too easily. Their build quality appears excellent to my eyes. I may be benefiting from having waited until late August before ordering though. The few issues I read about seem to have been sorted out on my pair. The LCD-2s have exceeded my expectations so far. They’re better in every meaningful way than any other headphones I’ve heard thus far (no stats yet). I’m still waiting to get an XLR terminating cable to hear if it adds any additional benefit. I’ll report back if and when that happens.
  8. nnotis

    Audeze LCD-2

    I wonder if anyone here has had Audeze modify the cable when purchasing? I’m planning on asking them to give mine a 4 pin XLR termination. I trust they’re able to do this easily. I thought I’d ask about it here first, before bugging Audeze about it. They must be busy enough as it is.
  9. Indeed, that’s a frustrating situation. I wonder if JH Audio has considered offering different materials? I’ve only had acrylic customs, but I recall headphoneaddict mentioning some Westone IEMs using a different, and more comfortable material. Don’t the new UE IEMs also use something they claim will increase comfort? It seems as though there would be a greater margin for fit error if the material used were a little more forgiving. And even though I’ve got my JH-13s pretty dialed in now, they’re never quite as comfortable as I’d like them to be. Maybe softer IEM substances create more problems than they solve. I really don’t know.
  10. One thing that makes this discussion all the more confusing is that different converters probably perform better at different rates. Even if Lavry is right, I don’t doubt there are DACs out there that give their best audible performance at 192 kHz. There is one thing that would turn me away from a DAC that only handles 16 bits though. If you run a 24 bit file into it, truncation will occur. And I can say confidently from my own experience, truncated files sound noticeable grainier and more congested than the 24 bit originals. This is due to quantization distortion. I wonder if anyone has built a DAC that automatically dithers in real time if receiving a 24 bit signal?
  11. I have previously spent some time reading his posts on gearslutz. But now I’ll have to go back and find dissenting opinions. I’d really be interested in hearing Cambridge explain the benefit of sampling at 384kHz. I’d like to give them the benefit of the doubt. But a justification seems warranted. Have you played around with the different rates? Do you notice any differences?
  12. I'm too lazy to dig up a link, but Dan Lavry has written a lot about high sample rate digital audio. He's even done so on Head-Fi. In short, he thinks that going above 96 Khz actually degrades performance. I’m pretty sure he stated his ideal sample rate as something around 60 Khz. That makes 88.2 the best pick from what’s available. I do use a DA-10, which is connected to my Mac via an RME card that outputs either SPDF or Toslink/ADAT. When listening to anything in the standard 44.1 Khz sample rate, I double it into the Lavry to prevent any high frequency roll off. And I’m pretty sure that it does sound slightly better. I’ve never been diligent enough to do a blind test though. If Dan Lavry is right, and I’ve not seen anyone challenge him, than all digital audio products with uber high sample rates are just gimmicks. Perhaps it’s a bit like saying your IEM has more drivers than the others do. It must reproduce sound more accurately then, right?
  13. Max can also go from FLAC to ALAC.
  14. It was already mentioned, but I'll give a second shout out to Max, a free program for Mac OS. I've used it for years without incident.
  15. I've been sending mine back for fit touch ups. But I've always attributed the slight fit issue with my own behavior during the mold making process.
  16. Yes, I use mine with my B22. Despite the apparent amp overkill, they pair extremely well together. With the gain reduced to listening levels, there's no more audible noise than what I get with my Pico. The B22 gives the JH-13s a very neutral, impactful sound with a surprisingly deep soundstage. My B22's builder, Dreadhead's buddy, deserves much credit for getting such a low noise floor.
  17. I have both. The JH-13s are a big step up. Their soundstage is only a little bit larger. But top and bottom extension, as well as detail retrieval, is hugely superior with the JH-13s. The whole spectrum is more transparent too. Bass always sounded similar with the UE-10s. It
  18. Ok, I’ve had mine for just under two weeks now. Yes, they are amazingly good. They go as high and low as I can hear. They are indeed the most neutral headphones I’ve ever heard, which is exactly what I want for mixing and monitoring. The thing that really surprised me though, was when I started hearing details that I hadn’t before noticed on my K1000 Beta22 setup. Despite the hyped treble of the K1000s, tiny textures are even more evident on the 13s. And they resolve separate instruments during complex passages that my K1000 setup can’t quite handle. Until Sony decides to make a successor to the Qualia, or Stax makes a new flagship pair that’s a whole hell of a lot more efficient than the O2s, I don’t know that I’ll have any reason to get a new pair of full sized headphones.
  19. I was pretty impressed by the turn around time on mine. They got my impressions on 6/26, and I received them last Thursday. Considering how slammed they are, I figured I'd be waiting well into August.
  20. Did the JH13 Beta 22 combo give a nasty noise floor?
  21. I found the HD800s to compare quite well with the K1000s in this regard. I'd have to do a lot more listening to determine which one has the edge in resolution and clarity above 50 Hz. Below that frequency, the K1000s really roll off, making the HD800s the clear winner in sub bass presentation. But as K1000 hardliners would be quick to point out, the Beta 22 I use to drive my K1000s is not considered their ideal amp.
  22. I'm a bit surprised by some of the negativity I've read on head-fi about this product. If the DAC and amp sections are Pico quality, and the battery lasts 8 hours playing lossless files, I think $700 is a steal. And if the amp doesn't turn out to be quite right, the modularity of the unit means that if you wait long enough, someone will make one that is. I consider buying this a matter of when, not if. And if Head-Amp gets involved, this thing's a no-brainer purchase. With an HM-801 plus JH-13s, I might actually look forward to air travel.
  23. Indeed, the new Sonys are hypothetical. Sorry to get your hopes up people.
  24. Well, I just payed my $1000 entry fee into this club. At the worst, these will be a small upgrade from my UE-10s. But I do hope they turn out to be among the best headphones of any kind. If so, $1100 is a steal.
  25. I'd be interested in hearing how you currently find the HD800s inferior to the Qualias. It's Ok to change your mind about these things.
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