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Sennheiser Orpheus


CharlyD
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A good friend of mine just posted his Orpheus on EBay - http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=330385727467. I listened to these briefly several years ago with CD material. I'm off to his place tomorrow night for a final listen but will be bringing my DAC, hard drive and laptop. I'm really looking forward to queing up some 192/24 content on these 'phones. Review will be forthcoming.

 

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My few hours of listening to these wonderful cans happened last night. It's quite a challenge to listen with an open mind to components whose price is far beyond my reality, and whose technologies (tubes) are quite old and I have long considered obsolete. But... by Gawd they sound great! Getting my singular caveat out of the way, their bass extension is not that deep. But all the rest is extraordinary, pure magic. With tube amplification, I was expecting the noise floor to be a audible contribution. Not so. Pianissimo passages that are often far down in the dirt on 44.1/16 recordings are instruments playing beautiful music on a background of silence with well-recorded hi-rez. Punching it up with some well-recorded jazz, their dynamic punch was as good as I've ever heard. Kick drums have the full impact you would expect with the full envelope of attack and decay. The benefits of tube amplification is clearly demonstrated in the mid-range with strings and female vocalists showing no hint of edginess and clear articulation of the timbre. The soundstaging is also greatly enhanced with each instrument/performer having a fully-defined, almost physical presence.

 

Yeah, they're outrageously expensive, but, indulging in a little hyperbole, what's the price of transcendence?

 

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