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Dan Clark Audio AEON 2 Noire Review

Rate this headphone:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 6 3.6%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 34 20.2%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 75 44.6%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 53 31.5%

  • Total voters
    168

vurt

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Here are some thoughts about the EQ.


Notes about the EQ design:


  • The average L/R is used to calculate the score.
  • The resolution is 12 points per octave interpolated from the raw data (provided by @amirm)
  • A Genetic Algorithm is used to optimize the EQ.
  • The EQ Score is designed to MAXIMIZE the Score WHILE fitting the Harman target curve (and other constrains) with a fixed complexity.
    This will avoid weird results if one only optimizes for the Score.
    It will probably flatten the Error regression doing so, the tonal balance should be therefore more neutral.
  • The EQs are starting point and may require tuning (certainly at LF and maybe at HF).
  • The range around and above 10kHz is usually not EQed unless smooth enough to do so.
  • I am using PEQ (PK) as from my experience the definition is more consistent across different DSP/platform implementations than shelves.
  • With some HP/amp combo, the boosts and preamp gain (loss of Dynamic range) need to be carefully considered to avoid issues with, amongst other things, too low a Max SPL or damaging your device. You have beed warned.
  • Not all units of the same product are made equal. The EQ is based on the measurements of a single unit. YMMV with regards to the very unit you are trying this EQ on.
  • I sometimes use variations of the Harman curve for some reasons. See rational here: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...pro-review-headphone.28244/page-5#post-989169
  • https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...pro-review-headphone.28244/page-6#post-992119
  • NOTE: the score then calculated is not comparable to the scores derived from the default Harman target curve if not otherwise noted.
Good L/R match.
HF a bit ragged, EQ will be dependent fitting

I have generated two EQs, the APO config files are attached.

Score no EQ: 70.7
Score Amirm: 82.5
Score with full EQ: 97.5
Score with EQ: 90.6

Code:
DCA Aeon 2 Noire APO Score Full EQ Flat@HF 96000Hz
July172023-145752

Preamp: -5.8 dB

Filter 1: ON PK Fc 112.70 Hz Gain -3.51 dB Q 1.80
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 265.80 Hz Gain -1.35 dB Q 3.11
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 1144.77 Hz Gain -1.72 dB Q 4.04
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 2011.98 Hz Gain 2.19 dB Q 1.68
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 3505.70 Hz Gain 5.77 dB Q 2.85
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 5750.32 Hz Gain -5.90 dB Q 3.67
Filter 7: ON PK Fc 7345.30 Hz Gain 6.72 dB Q 5.16
Filter 8: ON PK Fc 13301.70 Hz Gain -9.65 dB Q 4.48


DCA Aeon 2 Noire APO Score EQ Flat@HF 96000Hz
July172023-150130
 
Preamp: -6 dB

Filter 1: ON PK Fc 112.45 Hz Gain -3.51 dB Q 1.80
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 264.80 Hz Gain -1.35 dB Q 3.31
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 1143.77 Hz Gain -1.72 dB Q 4.04
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 2020.98 Hz Gain 2.24 dB Q 1.68
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 3498.70 Hz Gain 5.77 dB Q 3.05
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 5595.84 Hz Gain -5.07 dB Q 5.16
Filter 7: ON PK Fc 13304.70 Hz Gain -10.43 dB Q 5.20


Without HF:


Thank you for doing the EQ. I just received the Noire yesterday and was wondering about how to EQ (also new to EQing).

This is my first pair of fancy hi-end headphones, got it used. The Noire replaces a Bayer DT 990 Pro so that's my only comparison. My other 'phones are a B&W P7 Wireless and Audio64's quad driver IEM. It's melting my brain, I've never heard music or even sounds like that. A complete revelation. I can throw all the audiophile language at it but I'm not good with the vocab. All I know is my heart was racing. And it was just as incredible on my Pixel 7 Pro with a Cayin RU6 and no EQ.
 

staticV3

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I just received the Noire yesterday and was wondering about how to EQ (also new to EQing).
It depends on your OS.

On Windows, use Equalizer APO (or Mathaudio Headphone EQ for foobar2000 if you want ASIO/Wasapi Exclusive output).

On macOS, use SoundSource.

On Android, use USB Audio Player Pro for local files, Tidal, and Qobuz, or Wavelet for everything else (Spotify, YouTube etc.)

On iOS, your best bet is to buy a Qudelix 5K as there's no good software EQ solution.

You can find a full list of EQ solutions for all OSs here: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...ows-linux-macos-ios-ipados-and-android.18450/
 

vurt

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Thank you so much for the suggestions! I'll try SoundSource, and I already have the Q5K!
 

staticV3

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Thank you so much for the suggestions! I'll try SoundSource, and I already have the Q5K!
Attached below is an EQ preset that you can import directly into SoundSource, like so.

The intended sample rate is 48kHz (PEQ changes frequency response slightly with sample rate).

I created it using https://autoeq.app/:
Screenshot_20230727-002144_Chrome.png
 

Attachments

  • Dan Clark Audio Aeon 2 Noire ParametricEq.txt
    498 bytes · Views: 70

vurt

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Oh thank you again! I didn't know the sample rate affects the EQ. If I used an EQ based on 48kHz, does it affect the music that's on 96kHz? I just happened to notice this opus file I'm listening to is at 96kHz.

I also noticed AutoEQ pulls from Oratory1990. I'd done it manually by following this. But I'm observing the one you generated from AutoEQ is different from the chart.
 

staticV3

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If I used an EQ based on 48kHz, does it affect the music that's on 96kHz?
Yes. SoundSource will apply EQ to all audio, no matter the sample rate.
I also noticed AutoEQ pulls from Oratory1990. I'd done it manually by following this. But I'm observing the one you generated from AutoEQ is different from the chart.
Both the preset I attached earlier and the PDF you linked to use the same underlying frequency response measurement and target.

The difference is that the AutoEQ preset was created by an algorithm while Oratory's preset was created by hand.

In practice, they should be near identical. Only that by importing the txt file, there's no chance of messing up the numbers or filter type.

If you'd like, I can convert the PDF preset into a txt as well.
 

vurt

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In practice, they should be near identical. Only that by importing the txt file, there's no chance of messing up the numbers or filter type.

If you'd like, I can convert the PDF preset into a txt as well.

You're too kind! This is what I did by hand from looking at the PDF chart:

Pregain: -4.2 Filter 1: ON PK Fc 100 Hz Gain -1.4 dB Q 1.5 Filter 2: ON LS Fc 105 Hz Gain 5.5 dB Q 0.710 Filter 3: ON LS Fc 180 Hz Gain -5.0 dB Q 0.710 Filter 4: ON PK Fc 180 Hz Gain 2.0 dB Q 2.000 Filter 5: ON PK Fc 1200 Hz Gain -1.4 dB Q 2.000 Filter 6: ON PK Fc 2850 Hz Gain -1.8 dB Q 4.000 Filter 7: ON PK Fc 4000 Hz Gain 6.0 dB Q 0.700 Filter 8: ON PK Fc 4500 Hz Gain -2.0 dB Q 5.000 Filter 9: ON PK Fc 5500 Hz Gain -7.6 dB Q 3.000 Filter 10: ON HS Fc 14000 Hz Gain -5.0 dB Q 0.710

Do you do it in an automated way with AutoEQ too?

I also realized maybe I shouldn't use the "pregain" setting. I'm confused between "pregain" and "preamp". I'm using the Noire with the Q5K—"preamp" seems to be the right one from my experimenting because adjusting preamp helped with clipping, when adjusting pregain didn't seem to do anything.
 

Keened

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Edit: imho you should reach out sooner rather than later as they may even replace it out of warranty for you due to it being some sort of flaw.

Unfortunately this pair left the warranty at the beginning of the year it seems so they offered me a standard repair price of ~$350. Which is reasonable, I knew when I sold my Borealis for these that there is a financial risk that comes with proprietary drivers. Pretty much every planar manufacturer has somewhat high failure rates a few years out so it's pretty much the cost of entry for the tech.
 

paudio

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Unfortunately this pair left the warranty at the beginning of the year it seems so they offered me a standard repair price of ~$350. Which is reasonable, I knew when I sold my Borealis for these that there is a financial risk that comes with proprietary drivers. Pretty much every planar manufacturer has somewhat high failure rates a few years out so it's pretty much the cost of entry for the tech.
That's too bad. That's directly from DCA? Really early set I guess? You can get a used set for like 500. Normal Aeon 2 maybe around repair price.
 

mackat

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For myself I generally use 1 notch white + 1 black as shown in the blue line.
Thank you for posting this info.

Just to clarify, you are talking about 1 notch white + 1 notch black felt, not the black foam, correct?

Does it make any difference as to which color pads are installed first?
 

Dan Clark

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Thank you for posting this info.

Just to clarify, you are talking about 1 notch white + 1 notch black felt, not the black foam, correct?

Does it make any difference as to which color pads are installed first?
Correct, and no respectively... :) But try both combos to see what works for you, it's not like there's a "right" solution, which was intended to be part of the fun...
 

alumnicesar

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Apologies, I'm not seeing where to request a headphone review so I'll do it here.

Can you review the Jbl tune 760nc? Sean olive measured the 710bt and did phenomenally:
88.17 preference score.

The 760nc looks exactly the same and even shares an official Jbl video with those:

So I'm hoping the 760nc is just its noise cancelling sister.
 

Jimbob54

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Apologies, I'm not seeing where to request a headphone review so I'll do it here.

Can you review the Jbl tune 760nc? Sean olive measured the 710bt and did phenomenally:
88.17 preference score.

The 760nc looks exactly the same and even shares an official Jbl video with those:

So I'm hoping the 760nc is just its noise cancelling sister.
You can't request a review. You can loan a unit to Amir to review (pm him if so). Or some manufacturers provide units though I don't believe jbl /Harman are one of those.
 

holdingpants01

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How are all these for people with large heads?
I have a large head and they are very comfortable to me, my ears fit well too and this is usually why most headphones are painful to wear for me. They don't squeeze head too much, feel very light, headband is wide enough so it doesn't push in one spot, one minus is the ear pad material, it's not breathable so sometimes it makes me sweat, I prefer velour but it's not possible here with the required seal. For comparison HD560S were squeezing too much with a push on the top of my head, DT150 are making me sweat more than these, DT880 are fine but feel heavier (probably because of the smaller contact areas), all Austrian Audio were too heavy, only Stealth felt better
 

Bleib

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I have a non noire version and would need a replacement cable... any tips on ones that don't cost an arm and a leg?
 

enricoclaudio

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