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I have gotten out of the speakers and electronics  game. However I have left a budget for a high end headphones and headphone amp. set up.
 

Had a listen to to Audeze LCD 3 and was blown away on how good they were, I’ll compare them against the STAX SR 007 mk2 soon. 
 

Will budget about the same price as the headphone for the headphone amp as well. For nthe LCD 3 it will be the SPL Phonitor xe.

For the STAX, perhaps the Stax SRM-007TII.

 

I want a great all round set up, but I do listen to 80’s rock/pop a lot. My source is a NAIM HDX server/player.

Reliability will factor in my choice, I hear the Audeze was a bit hit and miss - driver failure  wise - but have gotten a LOT better recently apparently. 
 

 

Cheers !
 

Edited by seadog
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  • seadog changed the title to Audeze LCD 3 or STAX SRH 007 mk2

I found the LCD3 too laid back and a bit dark for an all rounder.

 

What's the actual budget? Guessing around $5000 ?

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Look around $5,000 either all up or just for the ‘phones ( for that special set). 
 

The Final Audio D8000 has peaked my interest too. As in a stereo system, I am fast coming to the conclusion that system matching is just as important with headphones.

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The D8000 Pro with EQ is exceptionally better than the LCD3. With no EQ you may find them a bit bright. The non-pro D8000 is great if you can't EQ them. Both benefit greatly from a bump in the mids, and turns them into insanely good headphones.

 

The Hifiman HE1000se is also excellent.

 

For me LCD3 was too dark and smooth for anything energetic. Fine for jazz and soul, prog or rock just didn't do it for me.

 

Source: Have owned LCD3 and D8000 Pro in recent months.

Edited by Bengineer
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Cheers for that. I’ll keep demoing until I have a pair locked in.
 

Price wise the STAX 007mk2 is looking most promising, it’s the matching energiser unit that can go from $2,000 ‘ish up to about $8,000 that is the issue.

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2 minutes ago, seadog said:

Cheers for that. I’ll keep demoing until I have a pair locked in.
 

Price wise the STAX 007mk2 is looking most promising, it’s the matching energiser unit that can go from $2,000 ‘ish up to about $8,000 that is the issue.

 

I have some 007mk2 that I might be looking to sell (just the 'phones not the energiser) if that's the direction you decide on

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After a long demo afternoon at a dealer. 
 

I have revised my expectations and budget. Now locked in on the Focal Utopia. Had everything I love about pop, rock music. Not even close TBH and it comprehensively seen off Audeze LCD X, 3 & 4, the HEDD & Stax SR 097 mk2 - against my music taste and what I like sound wise.
 

For example, a guy purchased the LCD 3 while I was in there. He was a strictly jazz, blues guy though, so a customer with a totally different musical taste and all that.

Edited by seadog
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I have Utopia and LCD-3, I think they are great companion headphones. Agree about the Utopia choice, if you like what they do, there isn’t much else to compete.

 

Interested in your thoughts on the Hedd. @seadog

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Did you get to try the D8000 Pro?

 

With EQ to bump mids a touch, it punches on with the Utopia in technical prowess but adds a low end the Utopia falls short on. For my ears, at least. And it's timbre is better.

 

Utopia killer can though.

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They do sell Final Audio, but no demo. D8000 available unfortunately. I “could” risk it and blind buy a pair. But I won’t, I’ll see if they can get a demo. set in. I am also curious as to how they fair.

 
The HEDD ‘phones were really, really good. Sound wise excellent, detailed and punchy. The letdown was fit and comfort on my head. I was maxed out on the arm slider length, it was only “just” long enough to allow the ear cups to cover my ears. 
 

That then put more pressure on the top of my head. So I passed on them.

Edited by seadog
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Demoing the Meze Empyrean ‘phones now.

 

Bloody heck ! These are so good too. Now I cannot decide these or the Focal Utopia....... can get a better price on the Meze though......

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