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My cans and rough impressions

I think I have to write some impressions on my cans that I have enjoyed for past few weeks, I am obliged to write something for better memory. These are the impressions with the following equipment used:

Equipment used:

Sources: mainly the Musical Fidelity X-Ray CDP, and occassionally the NAD C521BEE
Amps: Corda HA-2 MkII, Original Master, Little Dot II, SRM-313
Interconnects: mainly using DIY Slinkylinks cables with QED plugs between Corda HA-2 and SRM-313, Cardas Crosslink


HD650/Zu: That said Zu mobius is the best cable which match better with HD650 than Cardas or Equinox or Cloud Red or others, however, I still find this combo sound veil and laid-back on my setup. It has very deep bass, not boomy but very tight and clean.But the soundstage is narrower than the DT880.

DT880: This is my favourite cans that IMO outbalance the HD650. It has wider soundstange, transparent sound reproduction and flat response. Overall it’s very neutral, bass is well defined and sonic details are amazing. However, it sounded so much analytical that although it’s not fatique to listen with, it could sound very bored.

MS2i (fatboys): My first heaphones was the Grado SR60, and MS2i is my second cans from Grado, or Alessandro. It is very fun to listen with, more resolution and details compared to SR60, having deep bass and better soundstage. After listening to MS2i, I found the SR60 which I fond of when I first touch on headphones, is now sound muddy, to my ears. I am very happy with MS2i, whenever I want a relaxed listening I will go for it.

ER-4S: The only IEMs I have been using now, well, IMO it sounds almost perfect to me, very flat response, very analytical and balance. Clean bass and tight, airy treble and full of details. What it lacks maybe the soundstage. But it’s very amazing this small canalphones sound comparable to these big brothers, headphones.

Stax 3030 Classic System II: Last but not least, these are the first electrostatic earspeakers I own. So far I am quite happy with them, it sounded bright and fatique the very beginning when I first used them, but after some big burn in time they are now very comfortable to listen with. While listening to vocals, I feel that my other dynamic cans lack something that cannot compete with the Stax. Stax are well-known to be very detailed in the mids, they are really good for vocals, sound so smooth and I found the details are sometimes like “talking” to me (out-of-head soundstage). After listening to Stax SR303 for some time, I even found that it takes time for me to hear my other dynamic cans again, except for listening to rock, Stax lacks something impact at bass attack. Whenever I want to listen to Metallica, I will not choose Stax.

That’s it.

It is very difficult to choose what I love most, but I will keep the STAX for long enough and am looking for the chance to hear the SR-404 earspeakers to pair with my SRM-313 solid state amp. What I am not satisfy with, is the flagship of Sennheiser, HD650!

Albums used:

The Great Yellow River (KIIGO, KG1020-2)
Titanic: Music from the Motion Picture (SK 63213)
The Essential Leonard Cohen (Columbia 497995 2)
Shirley - Rouge (K2-002)
Pink Floyd - Pulse (Columbia CK67096)
Metallica Black Album (Universal 510 022-2)
Naoyuki Onda- Wings In The Dawn (Pacific Moon, CHCB-10029)
Majestic Drums - Live performed by HKCO (HKCO-SACD-3-2004-8)
The Corrs - Unplugged (7567-8096-2)
Best Audiophile Voices II (PR27840)
Vivaldi: The Four Seasons (philips 464 750-2)

2 Responses to “My cans and rough impressions”

  1. on 23 Jan 2008 at 11:11 am rags

    what’s your impression of the Musical Fidelity X-Ray? I have an offer to buy one for SGD550 and just wondering if its worth it. I’m matching it with a NAD C350 > Celestion SL6si.

  2. on 24 Jan 2008 at 9:24 am Livy

    I’d sold the X-Ray long ago, I found it’s overly cold and not musical. I prefer CEC TL51XR over X-Ray, in which the former sound more analog and musical. This is my taste after all..

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