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Expensive and/or raved-about headphones that actually suck!


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10 hours ago, comzee said:

I keep reading everywhere (here/head-fi/random reviews) that the 007>009. 

I moved from HD800 to 009. It did, in the very essence of the word, everything better.

Bass: More of it, more accurate (tight)

Mids: Ethereally magical, not only more details by far, but has an intangible essence that makes it sound alive

Treble: Far less harsh, more articulated, accurate

I really couldn't be happier with my 009/Carbon coming from the HD800.

For those that own both 007/009, would you say it's worth it to sell the 009 and buy the 007? I wouldn't be asking, but this thread + everywhere just shits on the 009 =/ 

 

 

I like both.

The one I listen to is the one I like best at that time.

 

Remember. Anyone's opinion is their opinion. Whether it coincides with your opinion or nor doesn't make that opinion intrinsically right or wrong.

 

It could be that all who agree with your opinion are raving nutcases, or even (gasp) aurically correct.

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I love just getting a chance to listen to music these days, not much time to worry where it's coming from.

In a box at the back of the closet seems to work best.

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The bottom line for me is that the 007's are more correct and sound "real".  Many of my recent amps have been going to musicians and they all say the same, the 009 just sounds wrong.  The hyped up top end, lackluster soundstage and well...missing bass all adds up to that.  Doesn't mean you can't like that sound but yeah.. the 007 is better. :)  

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I agree with the above. Some claim how the SR-009 is a refinement from the 007. Build wise it is, sound wise it's a miss-step. It's FR is certainly smoother than any of the Lambdas, but it has a surgical quality to it and it just doesn't sound natural. 

 

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one of my friend recently listen to my KGST powered modded 007A MK2.9.(RCA via adapter). And say it lacks eletrostatic characteristic. He meant the top end doesn't "shines".

I know some people likes Lambdas(507) with 006t. And thinks mafia designs are too brutal and make staxes sound "not like stax". Err........just a matter of taste.

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To me, the "electrostatic characteristics" are the resolution, the smoothness and the precise, effortless transient response. The 007 has em all. It's just not bright, which is a flaw in many STAX headphones. 

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The 007 may be more accurate to you but that is certainly not the case for others. 

Trying to make everybody understand that you are right and everybody else is wrong is a losing proposition. 

There are just too many subjective factors in the way our ears and brains process information. 

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I really think this is over exaggerated compared to much simpler dynamics such as the experience of the listeners and, which cuts to the core here, how many are actually using the 007's correctly?  The SR-Omega and SR-009 are plug and play but the 007 sure as hell isn't.  Something as simple as how the earpads are mounted is crucial and I've seen stock sets from the factory with them incorrectly seated.  Add to that the earpad condition, rotational position plus the angle and pressure of the arc... there are a lot of variables.  

I have a hard time believing that anybody find the artificial upper midrange of the 009 accurate.  But hey some people think the HE90's are accurate and neutral so there is some really stupid shit out there.  

One more thing, blaming our amps for Stax being bright is utterly idiotic and ass backwards.  The 006t, 007t and 727 roll off the top end a lot plus inject a lot of distortion in the upper registers.  

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Agreed, there are many other factors involved including user variance (error?) in regards to positioning/earpads and in manufacturing with all these different versions (not even mentioning mods like the spring and port mods, upstream components), so it's difficult to replicate and compare when there are almost no control variables in a veritable sea of them. Someone would have to experiment and crunch numbers to compare magnitudes of difference between, say, earpads and concha shape. I happen to agree with you that the SR009 that I heard, in the conditions I heard them in, with my ears, etc., has a bit of a hyped treble but that's just an additional possibly meaningless data point in context... another one being that if the SR009 has basically been on backorder since its inception, clearly some people do like its sound. I have not been a fan of the SR-007s that I've heard, enough that it has never interested me to purchase one to mod and fine-tune; of course, there are plenty of people who do like theirs. tl;dr ymmv

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Well the 007 is pretty much impossible to get now with a huge waiting list but a lot of the 009's popularity stems from one simple fact, it is the most expensive of the lot.  Same thing for the new L700, how many have considered the L500 over the 700?  Probably not many as more expensive is always moar bettah.  

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3 hours ago, mypasswordis said:

another one being that if the SR009 has basically been on backorder since its inception...

 

55 minutes ago, spritzer said:

Well the 007 is pretty much impossible to get now with a huge waiting list....

Is this when buying from your countries STAX dealer? Like if I bought from Stax USA?
I bought my 009 few months ago off Price Japan, seems like they had more then enough in stock, got it in 6 business days.. Same for the 007, they show it in stock?

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4 hours ago, mypasswordis said:

Everyone has different-shaped pinnae, which mean different resonance peaks. We need to model pinna-related transfer functions with parametrization over anthropological measurements to even attempt to "equalize" frequency response.

If those supposed resonances had a real impact in the frequency response perception when listening to headphones, we'd need audiometers for clinical use with individual calibration :palm: 

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51 minutes ago, Torpedo said:

If those supposed resonances had a real impact in the frequency response perception when listening to headphones, we'd need audiometers for clinical use with individual calibration :palm: 


Tautologically, that's indeed how HRTF works. This is a nice intro to the subject, although the differences are exaggerated with the rubber "ears": http://lib.tkk.fi/Dipl/2008/urn012834.pdf Concha-related Helmholtz resonance is approximately 6 to 10 dB in magnitude at around 4-6kHz. If one can't hear a few dB difference at 5kHz he/she should probably have his/her hearing checked out by a doctor.

This is an interesting read on approximating with reducing anthropometric measurements, though: http://arxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/1005/1005.5137.pdf

Another read on the correlation between aging of the external ear and resonance: http://www.scielo.br/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2317-17822014000200112

The best one can do when designing a headphone is to take some sort of average, and then there's the whole free field vs. diffuse field debate, and baseline volume in equal loudness contours.

@comzee Not 100% sure on that, I was just going off of what (IIRC) someone said earlier. I haven't tried buying either.

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that not all pinnae and external canal affect sound resonances the same, is a fact. No one argues that. My point is about the perceptual and clinical importance of such differences being in the irrelevant side of things to explain why we all hear in different ways. We tend to forget that we're not just ears, but that behind the ear there's a huge brain trying to explain and to fill the gaps. Placebo effect and expectations play a way larger roll.

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22 hours ago, mypasswordis said:

Agreed, there are many other factors involved including user variance (error?) in regards to positioning/earpads and in manufacturing with all these different versions (not even mentioning mods like the spring and port mods, upstream components), so it's difficult to replicate and compare when there are almost no control variables in a veritable sea of them. Someone would have to experiment and crunch numbers to compare magnitudes of difference between, say, earpads and concha shape. I happen to agree with you that the SR009 that I heard, in the conditions I heard them in, with my ears, etc., has a bit of a hyped treble but that's just an additional possibly meaningless data point in context... another one being that if the SR009 has basically been on backorder since its inception, clearly some people do like its sound. I have not been a fan of the SR-007s that I've heard, enough that it has never interested me to purchase one to mod and fine-tune; of course, there are plenty of people who do like theirs. tl;dr ymmv

The problem is that we learned to hear with the earflaps that we have, so the mind literally compensates for them.  I suspect the whole point in HRTFs are for IEMs, which bypass the earflaps.

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13 hours ago, NotoriousBIG_PJ said:

009 has better 'punch' then 007, but the 009's are too bright and I've found them fatiguing out of multiple setups. If you like and are used to the 009 then you may find the 007 a bit 'dull' sounding.

Biggie.

Right, if you are used to how the 009 sounds (and provided the sound agrees with you) and you move over to the 007, it will most likely sound a bit lean and "lacking" in detail at first. But when you are used to the 007, the 009 just sounds fucked up in comparison IMO. As mentioned above, how we perceive and appreciate sound has much more to do with psychological factors than our actual hearing ability. If you are mentally set on the 009 being the optimum for whatever reasons - which really I can understand, as it's the most expensive offering in STAXs lineup, has been almost universally praised to the clouds and also considering that many people seem to agree better with what I'd like to call the more "modern" standard of HiFi (bright, thin) - then naturally the 007 won't sound better if you don't want it to.... or something. And vice versa. 

But I'd like to think I know how an organ sounds, how a trumpet sounds, how a violin, a choir, a double bass and a female soloist sound. And I recon many 009 users do as well to some agree, which I what I keep scratching my head about. The 009 just doesn't portray those instruments accurately.

Surely you can tweak the 009 should you wish, the resolution is there and FR is easy to deal with using a good EQ. But for the price asked, things should sound more right out of the box. 

Oh and about the punch, the 007 needs lots of clean power to really get that punch. Fed correctly it has bass that is as fast, extended and punchy as on the 009, but with more body and heft. 

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On 2/25/2016 at 0:44 AM, EdipisReks said:

My favorite headphones are still vintage RS-1s with flats.  These will never be overrated, because they fucking rock.

Where the fuck have you been?

Aha. I moved from Canada to the U.S. and had a kid. I'm trying to get some rs-1's, I keep barely missing out on the older pairs.

Biggie.

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On 24 Feb 2016 at 4:32 PM, Bjorn said:

To me, the "electrostatic characteristics" are the resolution, the smoothness and the precise, effortless transient response. The 007 has em all. It's just not bright, which is a flaw in many STAX headphones. 

What are you basing this opinion on? On a top amp and good DAC the 009 is SO good it is untrue IMO.

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