NAD RP18 and Yahama YH-1 / YH-3 Orthodynamic

Discussion in 'Headphones' started by purr1n, Apr 21, 2020.

  1. Thujone

    Thujone Friend

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    Update on my HP-2... they appear to be stock. Just a small piece of light foam on the back of the driver (adhered over the years) and a lot of loosely placed felt strips around the circumference. The foam disintegrated when I touched it (left side of pic) and the felt moves around freely.

    [​IMG]

    I already played around with replacing the foam but I still have significant volume separation between the L and R driver. Waiting for new pads to see if maybe that could be the issue.

    TL;DR - just buy these if you find them cheap, holy shit. So comfortable and very easy to play around with.
     
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  2. gurubhai

    gurubhai Friend

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    That does looks like a stock pair although the foam seems to have deteriorated considerably which might be contributing to the treble droop or may be even the channel mismatch (sometimes the deteriorating foam can corrode the magnets or even the diaphragm). You should replace the foam (if you haven't done that yet).

    Also at this point, I would like to suggest what Wualta would refer as a 'stage 1' mod : just a round felt disk between the back of the driver and the foam. That should flatten the mid-bass hump and bring up the treble closer to modern standards.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2020
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  3. Kabeer

    Kabeer Friend

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    dBel84, some of those photos seem familiar :p.

    I do hope the wiki can be restored.
     
  4. dBel84

    dBel84 Friend

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    Good to see you old pal!
     
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  5. rhythmdevils

    rhythmdevils Best SBAF member of all time

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    X2! Not a rando. Kabeer’s one of the OG ortho gangstas modding and finding/ discovering new orthos that were lost to time and no one even knew existed. Way before the T50rp thread and commercialization hysteria.
     
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  6. takato14

    takato14 Doglover

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    Someone get this man Friend status! Can't believe I'm seeing that name again after all these years. Glad to have you back @Kabeer !!
     
  7. Cynric

    Cynric Rando

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    Lemme warm this up once more.
    I've been tinkering with my RP 18 again in the past weeks and found out that the horrible cheapo chinese Hifiman pads work wonders on them.
    My kapton RP 18 are running almost undamped (just a thin filling with Sonofil acoustic felt behind the drivers to tame the kapton bass and a Beyerdynamic foam disc in front to de-harshen treble a little), nothing else. No more different types of tape in different positions on the back or taped-off BD pads.

    The sound is absolutely incredible, deep & punchy bass, smooth voices, crispy treble, all with an airy spatial presentation, that I've never heard in the NADs before. Sound quality and precision has improved so much without the tape (probably distortion due to the tape-induced reflections) and somehow the FR just hits my sweet spot right on. The sound is just like the HE4xx with the IMTTSTR thick leather pads (think stock HE4xx with a little more deep bass and without the wide 2kHz bump), but with much more space.

    These are the ones I am talking about: https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32808952454.html. I bought these just for the mounting rings and they sound like crap on the HE4xx (rings are okay though). The pads must be washed properly before use, else whatever chemicals they drenched them in start itching after a few minutes.. Pads are a little larger than the NAD housing, but fit comfortably and sit well. They seem to be just cheap velour with a stiff foam ring sewn in, the underside however is some kind of artificial leather..
    What beasts these would have been if Fostex had just shipped them with pads like these in 1975!

    Pics: chinese cheap crap wonder pads (CCCWP™) on the phones and in closeup, and my old dampening scheme (was used with DT990 pads, with all the holes taped-shut) for amusement :)
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
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  8. rhythmdevils

    rhythmdevils Best SBAF member of all time

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    Glad you got rid of that tape on the back of the driver yucky. There’s no need for foam in front of the driver that just means they’re over damped and you’d do better with lower density felt behind the driver. I’m actually a firm believer in not damping the front of the driver I think it’s always a last resort or if you can’t change the rear damping option. You loose clarity among other things. But others do it. Do what you want.

    yes, the Hifiman pads are great with the RP-18 and the relationship is so cozy that the pleathers are perfect for the Mylar version and the velours are perfect for the Kapton. I have a lot of ear pads and with both Mylar and kapton I found the respective hifiman pads to be my favorite.

    Kudos to mr @dBel84 for figuring this synergy out like 8 years ago.
     
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  9. stratocaster

    stratocaster Friend

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    This thread as well as the lastest Grado/Symphones thing have sucked me back into the hobby.

    I thought some of those owning an RP-18 could be interested in the mod I am going to share below. I am using an FPC for my measurements, so keep that in mind.

    I did NOT change anything in the damping scheme of my newly acquired Kapton RPs. They came in perfect shape and had 2 of the yellow donuts behind the driver.
    IMG_20200726_113911.jpg

    Stock measurement:
    NAD RP18_stock.jpg

    This is how the modded version measures:
    NAD RP18_padmod.jpg

    The change in the frequency response has been achieved by a simple pad mod, nothing else. This is what does the trick, a felt disc (about 1cm thick) UNDER the stock leather pad ...
    IMG_20200812_162231.jpg
    IMG_20200812_162238.jpg

    And here we go!

    The driver will be a bit more distant from your ear, plus the felt will swallow some of the energy, so you will end up with a loss of some db, as visible in the pic below.
    NAD RP18_1.jpg

    Distortion:
    nad_mod_distortion.jpg

    I have been experimenting with some velour pads of different manufacturers, but this simple mod has turned out the easiest to accomplish. FR should be within 5db from 20 to 15k.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2020
  10. spoony

    spoony Spooky

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    Welcome back!
    Do you find a subjective difference on bass impact?
     
  11. stratocaster

    stratocaster Friend

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    Not really. FR up to about 5K is pretty much unaltered. But you will get a lot more HF detail/air.
     
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  12. rhythmdevils

    rhythmdevils Best SBAF member of all time

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    Nice graphs. But the stock pads are Suprauaral and so uncomfortable for that much weight. I wonder if some thin foam would accomplish the same thing with better comfort. Most RP18 pads are completely flattened. Hard as a rock.
     
  13. stratocaster

    stratocaster Friend

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    Unfortunately that does not work. I tried it with different foams of differing thickness and density. The result was that you lose too much bass.
    What was most interesting was that I got the flattest response with just the foam disk, this measured with an almost straight line from 20Hz to 10K. But of course this would be even more uncomfortable and when using this supraurally you would definitely lose seal. This can be 'fixed' with the leather pad on top.
    But once this leather pad is thicker than the stock pad, the upper mids and higher frequencies suffer and become more erratic.
    Unfortunatly I ruined one of the stock pads during my measurements, so I had do make myself some custom leather pads of the approximate same thickness as the stock pads. Then I transplanted the drivers into some wood shells.

    IMG_20200813_081412.jpg
     
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  14. mk801

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  15. rhythmdevils

    rhythmdevils Best SBAF member of all time

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    just couldn’t help yourself could you!!

    how about just Hifiman pleathers (Mylar) or velours (kapton)? Attach them with rope caulk stuck in a completely unbroken circle around the outside of the baffle, making little U shaped inlets where the screws are but not breaking the Circle/seal.
     
  16. stratocaster

    stratocaster Friend

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    My 2 sets are both Kapton. I tried over a dozen leather and velour pads, among those the Hifimans. Leather pads were useless with the Kaptons, velour pads were better. In fact I ended up with some Brainwavz for my second set.
    Yet, the one version with the felt disc and the leather top lid sounds best.
    The reason why I did the transplants is that I can change and adjust the rear damping easily that way. I can leave the cups on the measurement rig and adjust the damping behind the driver while instantly seeing the results in the measurements.
    But as I said above, the measurements posted were taken on the stock headphone with just the felt disc and leather top.
     
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  17. spoony

    spoony Spooky

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    What's the diameter of those pads?, when I played with the Yamaha on-ear orthos I found nice synergy with the Sennheiser Urbanite pads.
     
  18. stratocaster

    stratocaster Friend

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    This is how my stock pads measure:

    Diameter: 10cm
    Inner cutout: 3cm
    Pad thickness: 5mm!!!

    But beware, if you increase the thickness of the pad, you will endup with a severe suckout from 8-10kHz.
     
  19. spoony

    spoony Spooky

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    If there is any likeness between these and the Yamahas, I strongly recommend the urbanite pads, they are a composite textile solution that behaves a lot like velour + pleather surround. My measurements showed they were pretty close to the stock pads with the added boon of a tasteful bass bump, sadly I don't have those at hand anymore.
     
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  20. spoony

    spoony Spooky

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    Anyone familiar with the ECHO H16-40C?
     

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