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ivanrocks321

ES Labs ES1a

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18 minutes ago, ivanrocks321 said:

If you are going to Canjam this weekend in NYC, ill be there likely most of the time over the two days. Ill have both my Kaldas RR1 and ES1a with me if anyone is interested in a listen. 

already ordered a set hah.

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The ES1a is my choice. It’s all around more capable one of the two in my opinion. However it is much more in cost as well so it better be. The RR1 are excellent as well and should be a consideration as they compare well to many other stuff out there just not really in the same level the SR007 and SR009 are. 

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got my es1a yesterday. need more time, but first listen, they sound great! i also bought the kaldas rr1 out of curiosity. I might like these es1a more then my sr009 and sr007mk1

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3 minutes ago, rayofsi said:

got my es1a yesterday. need more time, but first listen, they sound great! i also bought the kaldas rr1 out of curiosity. I might like these es1a more then my sr009 and sr007mk1

Very nice, Just wondering if you got any extra pads and if so did you try them? My pair of "dark" pads are coming in soon. 

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8 minutes ago, ivanrocks321 said:

Very nice, Just wondering if you got any extra pads and if so did you try them? My pair of "dark" pads are coming in soon. 

these came with the pads that the maker said were the better ones. i have no complaints with these pads.. that are the "dark" ones already.

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I've had my set for over a month now and I would take them over the SR-009's but then again... never liked the 009's.  I've been meaning to write up some impressions for the last couple of weeks so now might just be the time.  :)  First of the build quality is outstanding which means they are pretty heavy but yeah... very well made.  The only issue I've run into is that there is a tiny bit of play where the forks attach to the cups but after a month of daily use they seem to be no worse for wear so probably not a long term issue either.  I would also like some strain relief on the cables as they leave the cups (the 007Mk1 issues spring to mind) and on the plug but these are not easy to do on small scale build.  They ideally have to be injection molded and well... that isn't cheap.  Still this is me and I'm picky...  😉   The packaging is also superb and small touches like the markings on the cable splitter are appreciated.  The fit is very much SR-Omega so a bit loose on the head and they have almost slid off a couple of times, usually when I'm lost in assembling some PCB boards or something like that and forgot they are there.  Not really and issue under normal use. 

Now for the sound, same system as usual, Denafrips Terminator dac feeding a Carbon CC.  I've yet to try the other set of earpads so they have the stock set attached... I think.  Anyway... the set they shipped with.  TL:DR, I like them a lot though I wouldn't call them an SR-Omega clone...they very much their own thing.  Balanced sound signature over all but not quite as warm and relaxed as the Omega.  There is a small bite to the mid-range that bothers me a bit on some recordings but far away from the SR-009 level of aggression.   So not as smooth as I'd like it but that smoothness was also the Omega's downfall in some areas.  Bass is not up to the SR-007 levels of depth, control and quality but perfectly fine and superior to any of the 009's.  It's linear and extended but not the best there is.  Still this is a more relaxed sounding set compared to the 007's so that is to be expected.  Sound stage is controlled, yet expansive but can't quite pull off the layering trick the 007's can do so well but again... not really a complaint.   

Overall I don't think it is fair to compare them to the SR-Omega due to their status and the sad fact that so many Omegas out there sound far from stock.  Bad earpads, badly treated drivers etc. all change how the old ones sound like while this one is nice and fresh... also not silly money.  So very much recommended and it's always welcome when I have no complaints when testing something new.  Small bite to the midrange that bothers me from time to time, not quite as engrossing as the SR-007's but yeah... just a different type of sound and nothing wrong with that. 

Finally, this set has been running for well over a month now and the amp used is being subject to a lot of power cycles (i.e. I'm using the time at home to do some stress tests) and they have had no complaints.  No imbalance issues, charge up instantly and dead silent drivers. 

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I bought a pair of these headphones because I really wanted to see how good they could be and to support this new comer.  My experience is pretty much similar to Berger's.  I like the build quality.  The clamping force on the head isn't that much, which is a good thing.  However, it can be a bit too loose.  The headphones almost fell out of my head a few times.

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About the sound, they sound very similar to my Omega clone.  I might be a bit bias, but my Omega clone has just a bit better bass extension.

Overall, I would say that the phones are very nicely built.  The headband can use some improvement.  The price, IMO, is a bit pricey putting it in a similar price range as the Stax SR007. 

 

Edited by chinsettawong
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I am glad to have received positive impressions on the es1a from chinsettawong and spritzer, Really appreciate that🤩

es1a is an alternative to totl electrostatics like the 007 mk1 and 009 for people who dislike their darkness/brightness, or owners of them who want to try something new. The es1a is brilliant in some aspects, and so do the 007 mk1 and 009. I particularly enjoy the wide soundstage, naturalness and airy, transparent highs of es1a. I hope that es1a will be refreshing to the community, since the 007 mk1 and 009 have been out for like a decade or two already.

Es1a inherits some key elements from the original omega -- its neutralness , big soundstage ,and sense of spaciousness. But its true to say that they are two different creatures. I actually hear more people saying es1a sounds like an 009s than saying es1a sounds like an omega lmao. But the reason I kept the omega appearance is more from a cosmetic and marketing prespective, and perhaps it fills the little void in my heart that I used to not own an omega in my collection.So as the light headband clamping force it contributes to the non-fatigue listening experience of es1a  and mimics what it is on omega but its not too friendly if you want to move around wearing it. 

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On 4/19/2020 at 11:59 AM, boinger said:

Any more impressions of this? How do these compare to stax sr-009

 

You can check out here for reviews from users and loaner program participants, may give you some insight.

There is also a video of es1a vs 009 AB comparison recording. Although the recording quality is not too good but it provide some references.

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How difficult are these to drive? Would they work fine out of your average Stax amp like a 007t or do you need to go big boy aftermarket for these?

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7 hours ago, catscratch said:

How difficult are these to drive? Would they work fine out of your average Stax amp like a 007t or do you need to go big boy aftermarket for these?

Off Kerry's carbon and T2 the ES1a played roughly at the same db level as the SR007 at a set volume, while the SR009 was able to reach thatvsame db level at a fair bit lower volume level.  I get the same results more or less on my carbon as well.  

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My personal pair seems to be somewhat more sensitive than the 007. If I use the 007 and plug in ES-1a while keeping volume the same I find it gets too loud. This might also be related to the more forward midrange/lower treble, however.

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I have an es1a loaner unit in US right now. I wonder anyone here would be interested to try them out ? Shoot me a pm if you do.

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can someone point me to how to work on this.. even with nothing playing i get some popping in my left ear piece. dont have this with any other headphones i have. thanks!

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4 minutes ago, rayofsi said:

can someone point me to how to work on this.. even with nothing playing i get some popping in my left ear piece. dont have this with any other headphones i have. thanks!

You can use a multimeter to check the balance and offset of the amp that if they are on zero or anything near it. Another way to work on it is to loosen the 5 silver screw on the driver a bit using a hexagon screw driver.

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4 minutes ago, bwck2000 said:

You can use a multimeter to check the balance and offset of the amp that if they are on zero or anything near it. Another way to work on it is to loosen the 5 silver screw on the driver a bit using a hexagon screw driver.

amp is fine - Kerry built t2 that i just got today.

switched back to my sr009 for now. Will figure this thing out with es1a soon. haven't had this issue before, have the sr009, sr007 mk1 and the kaldas rr1.

 

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On 5/22/2020 at 12:13 AM, bwck2000 said:

You can use a multimeter to check the balance and offset of the amp that if they are on zero or anything near it. Another way to work on it is to loosen the 5 silver screw on the driver a bit using a hexagon screw driver.

apologies... apparently nothing is wrong. went back to my kgsshv carbon. no issues.

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