Showing 1 of 349 conversations about:
View Full Discussion
Some of you that mentioned leaving the energizer on when not using as an added way to burn in, how long do you mean, always or just for the 1st couple weeks or what?
Also curious, just got these today and purchased based on all the positive reviews that these headphones were something of a groundbreaker in terms of their sound signature. Not sure if there's something wrong with my pair but owning Audeze LCD-X, Beyerdynamic T1.2, Fostex T60rp argons, etc, these sound lacking compared to those. It sounded from all the positive reviews that the ESP/95X's were almost comparable to the HD 800s's. Am I way off base here?
I have the HD 800 and the type of tuning is similar but the tone is different (due to dynamic vs estat). I tend to use either the HD 800 or ESP/95X for classical and/or acoustic music more than anything else.
I found that I really liked the ESP/95X after a couple days of use. Initially I found them very clean/clear but boring. I'm not sure if the "break in" was my brain or the headphones but I tend to like them more when I use them for longer stretches.
These are not fun and punchy and may not suit your taste. For the genres I mentioned above, I think these are phenomenal, assuming you like the estat tone.
As a classical music lover, I'm leaning toward the ESP. I only have two reservations at this point. First, the soundstage (for symphonies). Second, can the energizer connect directly to a MacBook?
I think the soundstage is good. It's not at the level of the HD 800 but isn't compressed, there is space and air between instruments.
There is a 3.5mm input in the front of the energizer which you could use with the headphone jack of a Macbook, mobile phone, etc. Long term, I would recommend getting a DAC. The Grace DAC offered on drop is a great starter and reasonably priced. My other two favorite budget DACs are the Schiit Modi Multibit and Airist R2R (also sold here but not in stock). These have a fuller, more musical sound and the added benefit of taking additional inputs so music can be streamed from a RPi or more expensive options. This helps due to USB being crap for music delivery.
Thanks for answering my questions. I've actually been looking at the iFi iDSD BL. I just didn't plan on buying the iFi and ESP at the same time and was wondering whether I could use the latter without a separate DAC/Amp. I use USB on a MacBook Pro but have heard that the optical out from the headphone jack sounds better. Alas, I'm now using a 2017 MBP, which I believe dropped the optical output. But you hear a clear difference between USB and other inputs?
You're welcome! I have the iFi and it is a great portable DAC/Amp. One benefit of the iFi is you can use battery power only (you'll need to eventually charge it of course) which helps with some of the noise from USB. I assume you have other uses for the iFi beyond being a DAC for the ESP? If not, I'd recommend pursuing a more affordable DAC-only option.
Where digital inputs are concerned, optical also sucks, I wouldn't worry about missing out on that. ;)
I find using a Raspberry Pi with Pi2AES as a transport (instead of a computer) makes a difference. With a Gungnir Multibit I found that it cured the "Schiit Shout" I was experiencing and I can finally hear what this DAC can do without fatigue. For the iFi, I found using the Pi brought that DAC more to life. Not that it was dead before but it got even better. If the Pi stuff is new, it can seem daunting. This thread does a good job walking you through the process, only need the first few posts:
BTW, if you use Tidal or Qobuz I can make recommendations in terms of how to configure the Pi system.
I know Allo Digital makes something similar, the Pi2AES supposedly sounds a little better but I haven't tried both so I can't comment directly.
The good thing is you can purchase each of these in stages to keep your budget happy. ESP with headphone out to start. iFi using the DAC over USB next. Finally a Pi to transport the digital files as cleanly as possible to the DAC.