[QUOTE=daveizdum;50884713]I've read many incredible user reviews for these headphones. Some say it's the best under $500 or the best they've heard. But when reading reviews from professional critics, the same observations keep popping up.
1) The soundstage is small, compared to other closed headphones in this price range.
2) The 10kHz rolloff is noticeable and detrimental. One professional reviewer said they are too laid back and sound like they have cotton packed in them. Another said it was inexcusable for a $400 headphone to do such a poor job on the high end. A third reviewer said the roll off is what causes the diminished sound stage.
3) The cable they come with is cheap and negatively impacts the audio.
These criticisms from professional reviewers go against the overwhelming number of "best under $500" and "my favorite headphone ever" quotes from 100s of user reviews. So here are my questions:
1) If you've auditioned the OPPO PM-3, do you agree with the criticisms?
2) Have you done anything with Amps, DACs, new cables, etc. to alleviate these issues? I heard that the OPPO HA-2 might partially address criticisms #1
Based on so many things I've read (and my love of the OPPO 103D that I own), I really want to like them. But I'd like to know whether the flaws are ignorable or fixable.[/QUOTE
Honestly, the criticism wouldn't be so bad if they didn't release frequency graphs. I think that becomes a self fulfilling prophecy for too many people as I don't know they would notice if you instead made the line flat instead of a dip. That might be a little harsh but I don't think the vast majority of those people don't have well enough trained ears.
The same criticism has carried over to the Focal Elears which is essentially the same as the PM1 with a better soundstage so a lot of people have just stopped entertaining the idea of buying or trying them.
I definitely think your amp, dac, and whatever else you use can offset some of the actual discrepancies plus you can always EQ it if needed.