RAAL requisite audio SR1a Review: HOLY MOLY! Buy this now!

Discussion in 'Headphones' started by purr1n, Jul 12, 2019.

  1. msommers

    msommers High on Epipens

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    Holy God. If Utopia has a perceived warmth then Raal will make my ears bleed. I'll stick to my warm pile-o'-poo
     
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  2. Rthomas

    Rthomas Friend

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    LOL

    I don't think the Raal is spiky like the HD800 was. Just a leaner presentation than the Utopia.
     
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  3. E_Schaaf

    E_Schaaf MOT: Upscale Audio; recovering HFM addict

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    IME when you've got a mostly peakless response and no huge deviations from a compensated slope, general tilt of FR will be indicative of a thicker or thinner, heavier or more nimble sound moreso than 'bright' or 'dark'. Isolated peaks and dips or uncontrolled ringing can throw that off though.

    Net slope of Utopia is flatish or slightly down (compare 100hz to 10khz level). SR1a slightly up. Borealis slightly up (vague resemblance to SR1a tonality and speed). HD600 flatish or slightly down (vague resemblance to Utopia's tonality and speed).

    Of course apples and oranges with different driver types and arrangements and whatnot, but I'd say my feelings of 'speed' and timbral leanness do correlate directly to net slope of these 4 headphone I mentioned specifically. I've auditioned SR1a three or four times for maybe 15 minutes each, but never heard on a synergistic home rig so take this with a grain of salt.

    SR1a has a nimble footed, 'fast', 'liquid' sound with a diffusive sense of dynamic energy despite the excellent imaging. But it doesn't feel bright because there aren't any huge peaks or dips unlike with many other headphones. For example, despite something like HD800 having more relative bass vs the upper midrange level, it feels brighter at first listen because of the localized peak. I despise brightness but felt the SR1a was very smooth and more tonally agreeable than my modded HE6 despite the SR1a looking more tilted up on the graph.

    TL;DR don't be afraid of SR1a if you're treble sensitive but find it an attractive option for other reasons. I'd take the SR1a over any stat I've heard, but ultimately like a heavier, thicker, more forceful sound and the conventional fit of a more 'normal' headphone.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2020
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  4. abraxas666

    abraxas666 Friend

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    Sharing my current experience with the SR1a, which I have owned for at least half a year.
    All my listening done through a Gungnir MB A2 with Unison USB.

    When I first listened to the SR1a it was kind of hard for my brain to fully grasp the sound coming from the Ribbons. It took me a couple of weeks to get used to the way the sound stage was presented. This is probably due to me listening to headphones mainly for the last 20 years.
    The first amp I used was a Vidar, and I must say that the one take away I still remember from the short time I had the amp was that female voices were great and had me teary eyed in more than one occasion. It was for sure a warmer amp.
    Then I listened to dual Vidar's at a friends house which was definitely an improvement in all aspects, super engaging with different genres.
    Currently the SR1a are being driven by a Jot R, and once in a while I get hints of sibilance in some tracks. Some old school rock\punk and electronic music sounds amazing though. Some songs do make me lower the volume but it does not happen often.

    My journey got me to the point where I am wondering about just getting dual Aegirs, to change the tuning for when I want to listen more to singers voices. But perhaps my approach and way of thinking will not yield the expected results. Only one way to know.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2020
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