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I don't get high electrostatic/planar headphones?

Blujackaal

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#1
Who cares about <0.2% THD when it costs $1200 and needs heavy EQ sound fine?. The Stax L300ltd & others all have -16db roll off starting at 70Hz, The LCDX needs EQ just to sound great since it sound wrong stock. But it always weird when they praise the bass but then get offended when balanced armatures sound the same.

Heck the HD650 & HD800S hold up fine despite having 5% THD at 35Hz?.
 

pozz

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#2
I think when you step back and take a historical perspective of 50 or so years, all of these different driver designs make sense. They all represent certain tradeoffs, but now, given the quality of implementations, the best of each are competing directly. Before, their capabilities were divergent enough to be thought of as being in different categories.

Now it seems that the question is: who's going to be first to come up with a practical active design that covers the entire spectrum without issue? It still seems as though beyond 10kHz or below 100Hz you can't expect anything great (good sure, but not great).
 

pozz

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Blumlein 88

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#6
I owned some early Stax Lamda phones. One group offering testimony was Mercedes Benz. They were making recordings in their cars trying to improve the quietness and get a better noise distribution of noise in the vehicles at highway speeds. They had selected Lamda phones for evaluating their recordings of driver's noise and passenger noise for use in developing a quieter car. Being a fan of ESL speakers, I was easily swayed they'd be tops for phones too. And they did have a high level of quality not available in other phones back in the early to mid 1980's.
 

solderdude

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#7
I like both headphones and speakers for what they are and where they excel at.
That differs.
 

Wombat

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#8
I like both headphones and speakers for what they are and where they excel at.
That differs.
You do have a particular interest in headphones. A specialty one at that, website and all. That's OK, by the way.

If one has to 'compromise' then do it well. :)
 

solderdude

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#9
The particular interest came after I had a heavy ear infection (lasted almost a year) to the point I only heard soft and muffled sound from speakers and reality.
Strangely enough using headphones this was a LOT better and could at least enjoy music again. The problem slowly left over the years and hearing returned back to normal. Speakers and real life sounds sounded normal again and headphones just became 'louder'.
During the affliction I had to turn up the volume a lot.
It peaked my interest in headphones. This happened about 15 years ago... time flies.
I guess I learned to appreciate headphones for what they are.
Still like speakers though but private listening without bothering others or 'shutting the world off' is only possible with head/ear-phones
 

thewas

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#11
I owned some early Stax Lamda phones. One group offering testimony was Mercedes Benz. They were making recordings in their cars trying to improve the quietness and get a better noise distribution of noise in the vehicles at highway speeds. They had selected Lamda phones for evaluating their recordings of driver's noise and passenger noise for use in developing a quieter car.
Fun fact, the Stax Lambda Pro (on which all current Lambdas are based) was evolved from the normal Lambda SR by the need from the Mercedes engineers for higher SPL by increasing the electrodes distance and polarisation voltage.
 

bobbooo

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#14
You can get cheaper electrostatic and planar headphones that sound as good as if not better than many expensive ones e.g. the Koss ESP/95X for $390 (including amp) or the HifiMan HE4XX for $180.
 

Katji

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#15
STAX is something else. Now owned by Edifier. The Edifier CEO/founder is a fan, he says the STAX development approach and development lifecycle is very different, the same engineers working there for a long time, they take their own time, gradually refining things...Edifier will not disrupt them but he did say something about gently introducing them to new development methods etc. (Like Klippel, I think.)


 
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#16
Who cares about <0.2% THD when it costs $1200 and needs heavy EQ sound fine?. The Stax L300ltd & others all have -16db roll off starting at 70Hz, The LCDX needs EQ just to sound great since it sound wrong stock. But it always weird when they praise the bass but then get offended when balanced armatures sound the same.

Heck the HD650 & HD800S hold up fine despite having 5% THD at 35Hz?.
what do you mean with 5% ? if you EQ the hd650/800 with no roll off in sub bass you will get a 35% ~ of distortion, it's really bad.
Hifiman I400 it's much better for example.
This is the THD from Ether flow, very low in comparison to Sennheiser.
1609953609625.png
 
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bobbooo

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#18
The $180 HifiMan HE4XX has similarly low and inaudible distortion:

 

bobbooo

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#20
Those measurements were taken with the miniDSP EARS and are not reliable. The ones I posted were taken with an industry standard GRAS set-up by Jude of Head-Fi in a purpose-built acoustic isolation chamber, just as the Ether Flow ones you posted were, so that allows for a direct comparison.
 
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