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catscratch last won the day on April 12 2012

catscratch had the most liked content!

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About catscratch

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Not Telling


  • Interests
    Like a rat in a maze, minus the cheese.
  • Occupation
    Where's my cheese?
  • Headphones
    Stax SR-007, SR-003/001, Koss ESP950, Taket Fuglyphones, AKG K1000, K340, Sennheiser HD600, HD650, countless IEMs of all descriptions
  • Headphone Amps
    Headamp Blue Hawaii; Stax SRM-717, SRM-313; lots of scrap metal that used to be amps (and some that were only pretending)
  • Sources
    Resolution Audio Opus 21; Neko D100 Mk2; Rega Planet 2000; DAPs and PCDPs in various stages of disrepair

Recent Profile Visitors

2,146 profile views
  1. The Headcase Stax thread

    I can get behind fur earpads on electrostats, but only if they also remove the dust covers for maximum sound clarity.
  2. Happy Holidays!

    Happy holidays all. To 2017: good riddance. To 2018: I'll be watching you
  3. The Headcase Stax thread

    So, uh, weird question. Are Stax diaphragm materials affected by long term exposure to direct sunlight? What about light in general? Should I keep them under a dark cover to maximize longevity?
  4. The FCC just overturned net neutrality .

    Leaving aside any dubious benefits of this passing, about 80% or so of America doesn't actually want this (iirc). Correct me if I'm wrong, but willfully passing regulation that most of your voter base doesn't want you to pass sounds awfully like governing without the consent of the governed. At this point I consider the FCC a rogue organization operating against the will and well-being of the people, though the same can be said about an awful lot of the US government lately. I'll give our government one thing though, it sure has increased transparency. As in, its mean-spirited, money-grabbing, lobbyist-pleasing motives have never been more transparent. They're setting themselves up for a reckoning... I think. Or I hope?
  5. The State of DACSES

    All this Ayre talk prompted me to pick up a used QB-9 DSD. Now, I have to hijack the thread with a question: while it seems to work fine, and sounds good, there is an audible buzz coming from the transformer. It's not loud enough to really hear over my PC fans when the computer's on, but when it's off, and the DAC is on standby, the buzz is audible. It's also audible if I put my ear close to it. Is this something I should worry about? I've yet to open it up and take a poke around, but given that I know nothing it'll be about as useful as dissecting myself to figure out why my stomach hurts. However there are 2 screws in the center of the base plate that are missing, I guess I'll see what they should be holding down and if that might be contributing to this.
  6. Stax SRM-T8000

    Well as a manufacturer it makes more sense to target the luxury buyer rather than the enthusiast buyer, so specialty hobbies like this one have an incentive to become luxury hobbies over time. The luxury buyer doesn't always know what's good - though sometimes they do - but they're mainly after something that makes them feel special. Meanwhile, the enthusiast usually knows performance but often doesn't have deep pockets, so they're after value, and creating well-engineered, high-performance products that also offer a good value is not something everybody can do and certainly not something everybody wants to do. So if you want to make money, you tell the enthusiast "sorry" and then you leave them in the dust as prices get sky high.
  7. Stax SRM-T8000

    ... and this is why I don't buy the whole "if it's overpriced, just don't buy it" argument. If one manufacturer does it and gets away with it, it sets a precedent, and soon enough everybody's doing it. Letting market forces decide isn't always good for the enthusiast. On the other hand, don't Stax have a history of setting ridiculous initial prices only to lower them somewhat years down the line? I recall them quoting well over $5k for the 009 initially in the States. FWIW I quite like the 717, but I paid $800 for it. It has a nice warm sound but there is a slight metallic edge to the highs, and if a $6k amp had similar problems, I probably wouldn't find that acceptable.
  8. Happy Birthday Birgir-Biggie-spritzer!

    Just saw the thread - happy belated birthday!
  9. Sony MDR-Z1R

    This. The way I understand it - and I understand nothing - is that your brain is used to compensating for the shape of your head (your HRTFs) but is designed to compensate for a single-point source of sound somewhere well outside of your head. Speakers aren't a single-point source but for HRTF purposes they aren't that different, so when listening to speakers, people hear similar things. Headphones are very far from a single point source, the sound originates from drivers just outside your ears and enclosed by earcups besides, so a lot of your head isn't a factor, and the same compensation curve now leads you astray into hearing a different sound, from person to person. And with IEMs, where the sound basically originates inside the ear canal, the differences are more pronounced. Now what I wonder is if the brain adjusts to the fact that the sound originates not from a single point source and comes up with some new means of compensation. I generally agree with others on how speakers sound like. When it comes to headphones, stuff like the HD650 and SR-007 actually sounds closer to a speaker system that's tuned to be flat 20-20, for me, than a lot of other things people call neutral. When it comes to IEMs, I have no clue what others are smoking, but if my crackpot theory has merit it's to be expected. People with whom I've listened to and compared IEMs have heard rather different things with regards to FR, but similar things with regards to detail, speed, dynamics, etc. From time spent on forums I've learned more or less how to compare myself to others, i.e. compared to Tyll, I gravitate towards a sound that is slightly, but not significantly warmer. Given those differences, I can kind-of extrapolate how things sound based on what I read but it's never easy or reliable, and even less so with IEMs. Of course, acclimatization is a powerful force, too. Listening to the L700 after the 007, it sounds bright. Listening to the 007 after the L700, it sounds dark. And over time, both start to sound more or less normal, though the actual relative shapes of their FR - like the L700's midbass hump and small treble spikes - are always audible.
  10. Yup. To reiterate my post from moths ago, I have to wonder why they chose a technology that's designed to cut costs for a high-end driver. Obviously it underperforms. The DSP portion of the system looks good, and I have to wonder how it will do with a more competent pair of headphones. Also, I don't get the idea of selling an all-in-one solution at $5k. Surely people looking to spend that much already own a decent source and maybe an amp or two, and taking advantage of the ecosystem already in place would be better than trying to sidestep it entirely with a high-priced product. Yes, when you consider the total costs of what this system replaces the pricetag isn't that crazy, but when you consider that the customer has probably already invested a lot into other systems, it is. I don't get this one, but the idea of good DSPs fixing FR problems in high-end headphones is promising.
  11. Get your game on!

    Your key is good for the rest of the beta.
  12. Get your game on!

    The NDA is now lifted on Quake Champions, so I can finally say I've been playing it since early closed beta. It's looking good if they can get the tech issues sorted out, which ATM aren't big. Some long load times for menus, long connect times for servers, a few customization options they need to add, and what feels like some occasional input lag, which doesn't happen all the time. In terms of gameplay, I think they nailed it. It's not quite the same old quake, but it feels good and it plays well. If you're looking to get into Quake but are turned off by the idea of trying to catch up on 15 years' head start that the OG players have, now's a good time. It's a brand new game. Sign up and get your key! Also, Immortal Redneck is pretty good if you're looking for a procedurally generated FPS rogue-lite thingy. The shooting isn't the greatest around but the weapons are varied, the movement feels fluid, and the environments are downright fantastic at times.
  13. Focal Utopia headphones...with Beryllium driver

    Honestly, at $4k you'd better be bloody happy with your purchase and if you're not, then you don't need to apologize for not liking them. Also, while Tyll's measurements are a great data point and an invaluable resource they don't completely summarize how something sounds, and dismissing something based on those measurements only (and the RS1 doesn't measure that terribly) is a mistake. You like what you like and there's nothing wrong with that.
  14. The Headcase Stax thread

    The Stax amp thing really pisses me off. This is the sort of shit that can kill a business. You have an anti-consumer practice (their pricing structure in this case), and when customers find ways to get around it, you restrict them more with another, even more anti-consumer practice. What's the end result of this going to be if not less sales? I'm more hesitant now to buy Stax amps. Remind me why this is a good thing for your business again? How do we get it through to them that they need to 1) knock it off and 2) equalize pricing all around?
  15. Fuck in snow

    Got somewhere between 6" and a foot. Shoveled for 6 and a half hours because I'm small and weak. But we can use the driveway now. Did I mention that I just love shoveling snow for hours? Somebody kill me it's my favorite! Guess I probably should have fixed the snowblower. Hindsight and all that.