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Transformer questions / Good headphones?
Transformer questions / Good headphones?
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Old 23rd July 2008, 10:03 PM   #1
Zap is offline Zap  United States
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Default Transformer questions / Good headphones?

Moving through the planning stages of building a DC Darling amplifier I'm considering that I may now use it for headphones at least part of the time.

I'm curious to know if anyone can suggest high quality, high fidelity headphones for comfortable listening and extended wear throughout the workday.

Additionally, I want to lay the OPT issue to rest. I've seen some frequency response plots specifically for the Darling showing that when a set of Hammond transformers were replaced with Lundahl the frequency response plots changed in a dramatic way.
Transformer Plots

I'm concerned with this being a problem since I'd rather spend a bit extra if the amp will excel and sound good when hooked up to efficient speakers. What confuses me is the rather low output power, yet rolloff is still seen anyway. Does the core just saturate quickly, or is it undersized?

Given this problem, how does one go about assessing the performance of a transformer without having to buy tons of them to make an informed decision? Obviously the Transcendar transformers on eBay aren't too expensive and may weigh a bit more than the $20 Edcors. I like the way the CXSE Edcor's sound that I have in my Simple SE. I just don't want to over/under spend or size the units so they are heavier than needed.

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Old 24th July 2008, 01:12 AM   #2
kevinkr is offline kevinkr  United States
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Transformer questions / Good headphones?
Grado headphones, many models and price points.. Great sound and very comfortable for long term use.

Talk to Jack Elliano at Electra-Print about transformers for your "headphone" amplifier. He has done transformers for Doug, (dsavitsk) and me as well. I think they're really good and I'm sure Doug will concur.
"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead." - Thomas Paine
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Old 24th July 2008, 01:36 AM   #3
TerryO is offline TerryO  United States
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I personally like my Sennheiser 580's, no longer the top model but they are none-the-less very musical and non-fatiguing. I had the Senn 414's (I think it was) years ago and they were excellent as well, very light weight and confortable.

I'm no expert on Transformers, but one that was, the late John Wyckoff thought that Jack Elliano's Transformers were about as good as it gets.
Another one that there have been talked about by those "in the know" is O-netic's Bud Purvine. He's also the creator behind the enable cone treatment.

I'd certainly contact both of these people if I was looking for top notch Iron.

Best Regards,
"If you have to ask why, then you're probably on the right track."
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Old 24th July 2008, 02:17 AM   #4
dsavitsk is offline dsavitsk  United States
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Originally posted by kevinkr
Grado headphones,

Talk to Jack Elliano at Electra-Print about transformers
I concur on both points. These are both built with E-Ps.


I'll also add that AVCs and TVCs used on the output as parafeed transformers with very low mu tubes and bypassing the volume pot is another good solution.

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