What must have been Kennerton’s German distributor were there with the full range of headphones. I tried Odin off some Viva electronics and was pleased by the sound. Of course an open headphone needs to be tested in much better conditions to make a full opinion.
We are always in the market for trying some new cables and while there were hundreds of cable manufactures, only Labkable were dedicated purely to headphones and IEMs. Josh whacked out his Vision Ears VE6XC and took some cables for a spin and was really impressed by the sound. Here is a quote from him!
“The Master series Takumi ($620) had very good clarity especially in the mid range open and great mid presence”
This is a cable that uses Silver-Gold, Silver Alloy and OCC Copper as conductors in an 8 braid. He also tried an interconnect and says it was the most dramatic change he had ever heard from a 3.5mm to 3.5mm cable. They have some crazy design such as the Samurai using platinum conductors. We arranged with them to get some of their cables over for some proper testing so stay tuned for that!
Sadly their headphones still sucked hard! Under no circumstances should you consider buying these.
Instead of making some new and listenable headphones, they have now tried their hand at a range of about a billion different IEMs, some dynamic, some with miniature planar magnetic drivers in. Don’t get me wrong they have cool tech, but considering the price tag of the models I tried, these did not impress, no they are not broken like the headphones but still not near the performance level that is being achieved now days!
A bigger booth and listening room easily drew more attention to Questyle this year. The listening room was dedicated to their new wireless stereo amplifiers but that I sadly did not listen to and then all around was their array of headphone related gear.
They had their new Golden stack on show which features ceramic PCB that alone cost $100 each and have to be bought in huge bulks. I tried the fully Golden stack (DAC, Pre Amp and Monos) with some LCD-3 and was suitably impressed, I need to swap my CMA800Rs for the gold counterparts.
They also had the CMA600i, an all in one DAC/Amp unit with a balanced out, it sounded fast and clean with some Fostex TH500RPs but I don’t really know the headphones that well.
Woo Audio, EnigmaAcoustics & Lotoo
While Wei and his team at EnigmaAcoustics did not have any new stuff them selves in regard to headphones (they had a new super tweeter) they were doing a good job of showcasing some other brands, namely Woo Audio, Lotoo and some cable companies such as Forza Audioworks in Poland. Jack Wu swung by with some of their new WA8 transportable DAC/Amp units that felt the part with some real heft and also sounded delightful with a pair of Dharmas. They are just waiting CE approval and should pop up in the EU! Hopefully I can review it when that is the case (or right now).
Lotoo were offering up Paw Gold and 5000s for demo but also had a prototype portable amp hidden away that Michael let us have a listen to. It was only a prototype so no photos (they showed us the final enclosure and it looks great) but along with some HD800s (to Wei’s despair) it showed some serious ability in the show environment, that will be a product we revisit when it is finished up!