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Symphones "MAGNUM" pre-order and discount


Rhydon
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What hippie wouldn't be happy to have a $700 pair of headphones? Not this one! Pic MySpace style for posterity -- extra points for dirty mirror! (though i lose points for not using a camera phone)

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BTW, the original SR325s are quite clearly the best looking post-MAGNUM'd variant.

Almost, I would slightly prefer the original MS2 without the plastic letterings, that would be PS-1ish!

Awesome cans BTW!!

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that kind of hairdo, feckn_eejit?

Notification: Your choice of style of hair may be counter-productive to the goal of listening to headphones. The ideal hairstyle of a headphone listener is bald. Second best is a military-style buzzcut. Namely, no hair or very little hair is best.

This advice also applies to hair in areas other than your head.

Regards,

Your friendly Headphone Listening Barber Association

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I'm re-posting aimlink's review and my reply here as I think they offer a useful perspective:

Ok. It's now time. :)

I gave them a reasonable listen after 72hrs of continuous burn-in. You can take a look at my headphone experience in my profile as well as the ones I currently use, in my sig. However, for direct comparison I did some A/B'ing with my RS/2i's.

Build, appearance and ergo:

Symphones has certainly delivered on its promise here. I think the modifications are very well done and as specified, seamless in execution. The Magnums really seem unmodified and just the way one would think they'd be, stock out of the factory. There's an equal blend in colour and finish of the original aluminium with the new. The metal supporting rod is really nice and snuggly fits the plastic holder. I don't know if this fit will loosen over time though because the all-aluminium design makes these cans pretty heavy. They are my heaviest and by a good margin. I'm thinking that Symphones should provide a headband upgrade as part of the package. Offer something like a J-Money headband. Something thicker and with more padding for comfort. I'm also finding that I can't recline backwards with them since the weight is causing a posterior drift and pull on my external ear to keep them in place (a product of their weight combined with their on-ear design). I also just sneezed and they drifted forward on me by a good 30% or so. I had to readjust there position. While I give them a 9 out of 10 for looks, I give them a 5 for fit and comfort in use.

Sound:

Overall, and to my surprise I find that the RS2i delivers a very similar sound. I must say that I was surprised and it took me a while to admit to this, especially since the RS2i's are so much lighter and as a result, fit much better. The wood finish of the RS/2 puts them up there in terms of good looks too.

The bass response of both the Magnums and RS2i's were pretty identical and I came to this conclusion after listening to various genres and CD's of varying quality and bass delivery (Iron Maiden, Metallica, Madonna, Black Eyed Peas, Mike Oldfield, Massive Attack, B-Tribe and more). Everytime I'd start with the Magnums, I'd be impressed, but to my surprise, the RS2i's would deliver just as well in punch, detail and extension. The comparison was made a lot easier since the RS2i's and Magnums share pretty much identical sensitivity. No volume adjustments were required.

Performance from mids to highs is where the differences lie and really only in the upper freqencies. That characteristic 325is brightness has been very much preserved. The brighter high end makes for a clearer sort of sound from the Magnums while the RS2i's have a slight, relative colouration (warmth in the mids to highs) in sound because of their not being as bright. The tonal balance to me, is otherwise pretty much the same. While listening to vocals or instruments, the only real difference in timbre would be from that added brightness with the Magnums.

At first I thought the Magnums were more detailed, but with more listening I realized this wasn't so. The brighter presentation makes detail more easily apparent. However, on relistening to the RS2i, the detail is very much there but it's just that it's not as obviously rendered because of the lower brightness in presentation.

So overall, I do find my RS2i and Magnums to be VERY, VERY similar. I'm leaning towards my RS2i because of the more comfy fit with that subtle, though distinct reduction in brightness that makes for an easier listening experience with a lot of my CD's. Be that as it may, I'm saying that only from the POV of my personal preference rather than saying that the RS2i sounds better. Leaning towards one as opposed to the other doesn't mean an outright preference either. They're that close. I'm happy using one or the other depending on the music or situation.

However, if one were to ask me personally, I'd recommend the RS2i rather than purchasing an SR325is and modd'ing it for $399. I've noted comparison's of the Magnums with the RS1 and others. As I suspect, I'm definitely at the point of diminishing returns and my interest in trying other cans is rapidly diminishing. Either mountains are being made out of molehills where differences between very good cans are concerned, or my ears just aren't yet sensitive enough. Could be my gear as well that aren't up to better showing up the differences between these my RS2i's and Magnums. I'll leave that decision out there. I can only truthfully relate my experiences.

If not for any other reason, it's been an interesting experience.

Interesting thoughts aimlink. I just received an Audiovalve RKV Mark II tube amp. It's not as detailed and warmer than my Phoenix. Interestingly I found that I prefer the Magnums balanced from the Phoenix as that brought out a high level of detail and, I feel a match that has taken my listening enjoyment to another level, whereas the RKV has that syrupy smoothness at the slight expense of detail and treble extension which is enjoyable in a different way. With the RKV I prefer the slightly slower and more mid-range-lush HE-5s which are fatiguing balanced from the Phoenix, possibly due to the treble peak in their frequency response. When I found the Magnums to be fast and detailed, it was listening to music such as Chopin, SRV and jazz, where there is a particular focus on the mid-range, and often not so the treble. It was then I felt they delivered a very natural and pure presentation of instruments that I had not heard through dynamic headphones before. What this leads me to believe is that the Magnums are excellent value if you already have a very detailed high-end rig (compared to HD-800s which cost over 2x as much), but similar to what you concluded, with less than that they may not be as great a value proposition.

I hope that makes sense. :)

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Just read through this thread for the first time. Glad to know that he has ultimately delivered on his promises. Always good to have more alternatives. People's impressions as to build quality and sonic performance will vary, of course. But at least they've sorted out their mail problems in Canada.

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New Magnum Lite for a very reasonable-sounding $199 ($500 including a pair of MS2i), the only difference being it uses the stock forks. Rather scary that the forks cost half the original mod. HF-2s can be modded as well.

That seems a lot more reasonable to me. Can't imagine anyone would want to gut their HF-2 though. It would seem to me that since the sonics turn out the same in any event, the best approach would be to start with the cheapest headphone that fills the bill, presumably the MS-2 or 325.

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I've been exchanging PMs with Rhydon about using HF2 for the Magnum process. Initially I thought the Magnum'd drivers will be different for each model but it turns out that I'm wrong. Nothing is finalized yet at the moment...

Sounds like to me that getting the Magnum mod for the HF2 is useless.. you lose the drivers & the wood and the outer housings aren't that much different from the SR325i/MS2i, the mod is really aimed at those two models.

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Sounds like to me that getting the Magnum mod for the HF2 is useless.. you lose the drivers & the wood and the outer housings aren't that much different from the SR325i/MS2i, the mod is really aimed at those two models.

How do you know he doesn't return the wood and drivers? He uses different drivers and I thought he was returning the 325 drivers?

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How do you know he doesn't return the wood and drivers? He uses different drivers and I thought he was returning the 325 drivers?

You're supposed to get the drivers back but there's no mention of you getting any of the housing back (except for the parts that are re-used). Now, if the original drivers are being returned and housings are completely replaced, I don't understand why you'd need to send in the entire headphone at all - couldn't one just send in the headband parts (posts & R/L blocks) and cables?

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You're supposed to get the drivers back but there's no mention of you getting any of the housing back (except for the parts that are re-used). Now, if the original drivers are being returned and housings are completely replaced, I don't understand why you'd need to send in the entire headphone at all - couldn't one just send in the headband parts (posts & R/L blocks) and cables?

I've had that very conversation. I have my 325s in pieces and I just wanted to send in the pieces needed. Instead of assembling for the dis-assembly??

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And I didn't get my original drivers back... not that I particularly care but... ouchie!

I'd request the drivers back, they are not without value.

I think the SR325 drivers are used as "cores" to modify, and become the magnum drivers. Could be wrong, but the drivers have to come from somewhere.

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