I am all for new stats systems in the market particularly at the entry level and the Kingsound M series amps and HS series headphones do provide an interesting option and a valued alternative. It is unfortunate that they are now $1000 and not $800 particularly when both the entry level Stax Stax SRS-2170 system and the Koss EP950 now sell for $1k each also (Amazon latest pricing). It would have made the Kingsound system the cheapest on the international market. As such I do think you will have to demo widely between the three systems before you buy to make sure the tonality and general presentation is to your taste.
If you are coming from dynamics or planers then stats are beguiling and entrancing and quite different so it is quite possible you are going to find the Kingsound quite a treat. In our recent national meeting on Sunday 8th December my perception that new ‘stats’ buyers might like the system actually proved well founded with about eight testing them (with the H-02) and all eight immediately asked if this was a new ortho. Upon hearing it was a stats system they all wow’ed and mentioned they never though a stats system could sound so warm and bassy. I guess in the end we can discuss build and other systems all we like but if eight people listen to them and all eight like them then the acid test has been passed.
Long times stats users might find some issues though in the build quality of the KS-H1 headphones and its rather compressed nature compared to the better built KS H-02 headphones and the quite “unique” M-10 solid state amp which is quite compact and easy to place but internally there are some question marks on the PCB implementation, level of heat and scratchy volume pot.
I do think this is still technically a work in progress and if rapid evolution is on the road map then Kingsound might have something really compelling on their hands. As of now its early days but I do think it is important to support initiatives like this and help bring down the price of electrostatics in general and give it a much broader exposure and appeal.
Pricing with the KS-H02 headphone
USD1,050.00 – KS-H2+M-10
USD2,050.00 – KS-H2+M-20
MS-10 SS Amp
Input Voltage: AC 100-240V, 50/60Hz
Power Consumption : <50W Frequency response: 1Hz – 50 KHz (-3dB at 50V RMS out) Gain: 58dB Harmonic distortion: 0.04% (at 100 vrms/ 1khz output) Input Impedance: 24KOhm Rated input level: 0.15V (100V output) Maximum output voltage : > 300V rms (<1%THD) Signal to noise ratio: > 100dB (re. 100V output A-weighted)
Bass Boost: +9dB at 20 Hz, + 3dB at 100 Hz
EH Bias voltage output: 580 Vdc
Dimensions: 170 (W) x 265(H) x 60(D) mm
Warranty period: 12 months
Audio Quality Frequency Response 10Hz – 46kHz
Electrostatic Capacity 140pF
Impedance 113kΩ (at 10kHz)
Max. output sound level 116dB
Physical Specifications Dimension (mm)220(W) * 40(H) * 250(D)
Sensitivity 109dB(at 100Vrms)
Standard Bias voltage: 450Vdc
Cable length 2.5m