Audeze LCD-3

Clipdat
Clipdat Posts: 9,820
edited July 2020 in Headphones
My new headphones have arrived: Audeze LCD-3 in maple wood.

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I was surprised, as I was expecting the standard zebrano wood, but I'll roll with it.

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Tried to show the grain in the last photo. Gorgeous, huge, and fairly heavy (635g/1.4lb) headphones! But easily the most comfortable fitting pair out of the seven or so I've tried thus far.

Here's a photo of someone far more attractive than me wearing them, to give you an idea of how huge they are. 106mm!

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Comments

  • agfrost
    agfrost Posts: 2,358
    Very nice. Please share impressions of them as you use them for a while. I've got a pair of Audeze isine 10 (planar magnetic in-ears) that I like a lot and would like to some day get a pair of over-ears by them...
    Jay
    SDA 2BTL * Musical Fidelity A5cr amp * Marantz DV-9500 * Modded Adcom GDA-600 DAC * Rythmik F8 (x2)
    Micro Seiki DQ-50 * A hodgepodge of cabling * Belkin PF60
    Preamp rotation: Krell KSL (SCompRacer recapped) * Manley Shrimp * PS Audio 5.0
  • coolsax
    coolsax Posts: 1,824
    very nice, enjoy them.
    Main 2ch -
    BlueSound Node->Ethereal optical cable->Peachtree Audio Nova 150->GoldenEar Triton 2+
    TT - Pro-ject Classic SB with Sumiko Bluepoint.

    TV 3.1 system -
    Denon 3500 -> Dynaudio Excite 32/22
  • tophatjohnny
    tophatjohnny Posts: 3,373
    They look amazing. Enjoy brother.
    "if it's not fun, it's not worth it & remember folks, "It's All About The Music"!!
    *****************************
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 9,820
    agfrost wrote: »
    Very nice. Please share impressions of them as you use them for a while. I've got a pair of Audeze isine 10 (planar magnetic in-ears) that I like a lot and would like to some day get a pair of over-ears by them...

    Nice! My wife actually has a pair of those as well! Very impressive audio quality.
  • joecoulson
    joecoulson Posts: 4,944
    They look like dinner plates?!



    J/k
    Congrats man.
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 9,820
    Update: They're heavy as ****.
  • msg
    msg Posts: 6,611
    Are you finding them uncomfortable to wear during sessions due to the weight?
    I disabled signatures.
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 9,820
    Unfortunately, yes. It's gonna take a while to get used to them I think. Apparently I am a pencil-neck geek.

    I need a Henry Rollins neck.

    a8chtw09xzcb.png
  • aprazer402
    aprazer402 Posts: 2,399
    edited July 2020
    I've auditioned the Audeze LCD-X through a McIntosh MHA-150 headphone amp listening to a SACD. It was sweet! Nice headphones you'll enjoy them!
  • joecoulson
    joecoulson Posts: 4,944
    The designer of Audeze headphones:

    xn1pyc5etgys.png
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 9,820
    Update: My neck is now used to these bad boys.
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 9,820
    edited August 2020
    My new 4-pin balanced headphone cable has arrived:

    3xs82wkdq2bt.jpg

    kpbajrmlyq3b.jpg

    I ordered it from Stager Silver Solids: https://stagersound.com/silver/frames/overview.html

    Product page: https://stagersound.com/silver/frames/specs-f.html

    It's constructed of solid core silver wires with teflon insulation.The conductors are spiraled and then held in place with clear polyolefin heatshrink sleeving. It's 2m long and cost $245. It's a bit unwieldy and rigid due to the nature of the stiff solid core wiring, but it's flexible enough.

    Initial impressions versus the stock cable which is constructed of braided OCC copper.

    With the Stager cable, the first thing I noticed was that I didn't have to turn up the volume knob on my Phonitor X amplifier as high to get to the same listening level that I was just at with the stock cable. Cable buffs will have to let me know if this is because of it's capacitance/inductance or something.

    Secondly, there was more agility in the lower midrange and bass frequencies, along with a polished and pristine quality to the high frequencies. Because of how quick the bass was, it seemed to extend even deeper, down in to subterranean levels on some tracks. Overall, the sound came across as very quick and rhythmic, with no frequencies being abnormally accented.

    When I hooked the stock cable back up, I realized that it colors and bolsters the midrange details. This makes for a fun and engaging listen, as it gives you something to "lock on" to and follow along as it makes it's ebbs and flows. Bass did not extend quite as deep, but seemed to exhibit a slight mid-bass bump, that again made for a fun listen. Highs were extended and accurate, and fairly similar to the Stager cable, albeit with a tad more brightness on the attack. I thought this was interesting, as it is fairly opposite of how you'd typically expect a silver cable to be a little bright/forward up top.

    Both cables provided good depth and space, creating a convincing soundstage for the music to expand into. I have to give a slight edge to the stock cable for it's downright fun factor and engaging quality, but the Stager silver cable is arguably more transparent and accurate, as well as extending further into the depths of bass that these Audeze headphones are capable of.

    I hesitate to outright proclaim that one is "better" than the other, because I think they both have their strengths and ideal use cases.
  • Joey_V
    Joey_V Posts: 7,672
    Those are very nice headphones, congrats on the acquisition!
    Joey's Gear:
    Current Gear:
    Primary:
    Digital: Torus RM15 -> Emm Labs TSDx/Bluesound Node 2 -> Emm Labs DAC2x
    Analog: VPI Avenger Reference w/ Rim Drive w/ ADS + 12" Fatboy Dual Pivot + Lyra Etna
    + Audio Research Reference 40th Anniversary -> Boulder 2060 stereo amp (w/ Audioquest WEL Signature) -> new speakers + JL Audio F113v2 x2
    Secondary:
    Rotel RA1592 Super Integrated -> Sonus Faber Olympica 3
    Tertiary:
    Oppo 105D -> Rotel RC1570 preamp -> Rotel RB1582 amp -> Focal Kanta 2


    Main speakers system evolution over the years:
    Klipsch Promedia 4.1 -> Axiom M22ti -> Sonus Faber Concertino -> Sonus Faber Concerto -> Polk LSi7 -> Polk LSi9 -> Martin Logan Mosaic -> AV123 Onix Ref 1 -> Martin Logan Vantage -> AV123 Strata Mini -> Martin Logan Summit -> Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor -> BW 802D2 -> Sonus Faber Stradivari -> Rockport Avior -> BW 802D3 -> BW 800D3 -> ???

    Old Gear:
    Speakers:
    BW PM1 (3.5/5), CM10s2 (3.75/5), BW800D3 (5/5), Rockport Aviors (5/5), Sonus Faber Stradivari (5/5), BW 802D2 (4.5/5), Martin Logan Summits (4.25/5), Martin Logan Vantage (4/5), Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor (3.75/5), AV123 Strata Mini (3.5/5), ML Mosaic (3.25/5), Onix Ref1 (3/5), Sonus Faber Concerto (2.75/5), SF Concertino (2.5/5), Axiom M22ti (2/5), Polk LSi9 (3/5), LSi7 (2.9/5)
    Source:
    Squeezebox 3 -> PS Audio Digital Link III -> Cary 306/200 CDP -> Cary 306 SACD -> EMM LABS DAC2X/TSDX
    Preamplification:
    Rotel RC1070 -> Rogue Perseus -> Cary SLP98 -> Cary SLP98F1 -> Cary SLP05 (sold and then repurchased) -> ARC 5se -> ARC Ref 40th Anniversary
    Amplification:
    HK AVR330 -> Rotel RB1070 -> Rotel RB1090 -> Plinius SA102 -> Cary 211FE -> Classe M600 -> Boulder 2060
    Subwoofer:
    Infinity Entra2 -> SVS 25-31PCi -> SVS 25-31PC+ -> Dual JL Audio F113v2
  • teekay0007
    teekay0007 Posts: 2,292
    Clipdat wrote: »
    Update: My neck is now used to these bad boys.

    jipwsavmz5bd.jpg

    And what a couple of weeks it's been!
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 9,820
    edited October 2020
    Testing out a prototype/pre-production Audeze headphone cable from Audio Note UK that Peter Qvortrup was nice enough to send me!

    Sounds noticeably different than the three other Audeze headphone cables I have.

    Sometimes I wish there was no difference between headphone cables, because it would be hell of a lot easier to just write "Nope, no difference, they all sound the same!"
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 9,820
    edited October 2020
    Went back to the Stager Silver Solids cable tonight and god DAMN the synergy between it and the iFi Pro iCAN amplifier I'm reviewing is astounding.

    I keep saying one more song, one more song. Can't stop listening. Wow.

    I can't recommend enough for anyone who's curious about Audeze headphones to pick up a pair of these LCD-3s. They're seriously THAT good. Just do it. Life is short.
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 9,820
    I haven't heard any other headphones that can move me to tears like these can, simply because of how good they sound.

    When I listen to them I feel hot, I feel my blood pumping. They make me feel alive. They provide a truly emotional and visceral listening experience.

    Or, I could be having a minor stroke.
  • Nightfall
    Nightfall Posts: 9,507
    Very off topic but have you heard the Phillips Fidelio X1 or 2s?
    afterburnt wrote: »
    They didn't speak a word of English, they were from South Carolina.

    Village Idiot of Club Polk
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 9,820
    No I have not, but I know my fellow enthusiasts @msg and @rooftop59 are fans of the Philips headphones.
  • Nightfall
    Nightfall Posts: 9,507
    I haven't been paying close attention but it seems like the X3s have finally released. I was curious about your interest in them to get your thoughts if you ever made a purchase.
    afterburnt wrote: »
    They didn't speak a word of English, they were from South Carolina.

    Village Idiot of Club Polk
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 9,820
    edited October 2020
    Hey those look pretty slick! Unfortunately from my trials, I've determined that headphones with perfectly round ear cups don't really work for my ears.

    I need something like my Sennheiser HD600 headphones that have a more ergonomic/anatomical shape to the ear cup.

    Speaking of closed backs, I just ordered these to try out: https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/SRH1540--shure-srh1540-closed-back-mastering-studio-headphones

    SRH1540-large.jpg.auto.webp
  • Clipdat wrote: »
    Hey those look pretty slick! Unfortunately from my trials, I've determined that headphones with perfectly round ear cups don't really work for my ears.

    I need something like my Sennheiser HD600 headphones that have a more ergonomic/anatomical shape to the ear cup.

    Speaking of closed backs, I just ordered these to try out: https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/SRH1540--shure-srh1540-closed-back-mastering-studio-headphones

    SRH1540-large.jpg.auto.webp

    Normally I'm a sucker for exotic materials and somewhat unnecessary design in headphones, but the simplicity of those Shure's look really good too. They just look comfy.
    Analog: MoFi MasterTracker > MoFi UltraDeck > Sutherland 20/20
    Digital: Cambridge CXC / Streaming > Cambridge CXN v2
    MastersounD Dueventi > Rosso Fiorentino Certaldo or Arcam rHead > Hifiman HE4XX
    Discogs
  • msg
    msg Posts: 6,611
    Definitely curious to hear what you think of the Shures. I agree, they do look comfy.

    Indeed, I have a pair of the X1's that I like a lot, and I think @codycatalist has the X2HR and had the L2 before them.
    I disabled signatures.
  • rooftop59
    rooftop59 Posts: 7,239
    @Nightfall I’ve owned the philips X1s and now the L2s and really enjoyed both, but I think the L2s are better overall. The semi open design provides a bit fuller tighter bass but still presents a wide and spacious sound stage. And they are both really comfy, but the L2s are small and this travel easier if that’s important to you. I also really enjoyed my Sony MDR1As which I felt also presented a pretty similar sound signature overall, losing just a bit of spaciousness. But they folded up smaller and were closed back so I could use them on the plane and in a coffee shop back in a pre-Covid world when I often traveled to conferences...but I digress.

    I think @codycatalist had both the L2 and the M2. Perhaps he can chime in is he’s still around...
    Living Room 2.1: Usher BE-718 "tiny dancers"; Dual DIY Dayton audio RSS210HF-4 Subs with Dayton SPA-250 amps; Musical Fidelity A308; NAD M51 DAC; Sony UBP-x1000es; Squeezebox Touch with Bolder Power Supply
    Game Room HT: Denon AVR-X4200w; Sony UBP-x700; Definitive Technology Power Monitor 700 x3; Definitive Technology StudioMonitor 350; Definitive Technology ProMonitor 800; Sub - HSU VTF-2 MK5
    Master Bedroom
    Cambridge Azur 551r; Polk RT25i; ACI Titan Subwoofer
  • codycatalist
    codycatalist Posts: 2,661
    Mmm for me its tight between the L2 and X2HR. I enjoy the comfort of the X2s to the L2s but they are a bit heavier. Sound wise, it depends on what you listen to. As mentioned before the L2s have a fuller more rounded sound due to semi closed back design. You still get plenty of separation. The X2HRs sound very nice, a little harder to drive but still not bad. I love the headband and can wear them for hours. Sound wise, they would lean better towards accuracy and more guitar/singer type music, or jazz for that matter. Both are good and are well worth the money!
    Just a dude doing dude-ly things

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  • AngerB
    AngerB Posts: 23
    Beautiful. I had a pair of the black LCD-X. Sold them on, just too heavy and my ears responsiveness to input didn't appreciate the quality.