Campfire Audio Cascade Closed-Back Headphones - Official Thread



A little on the rough side, not the most comfortable pads. Sound is different, not enough time to give a good opinion on it yet.

Bass is still very present and overwhelming but not in as fun of a way… kind of blown out, just switched back to the leather pads… and everything is right in the world again. Comfortable and the bass is fun again. I would say these pads are not good. I’ll give them some more ear time but the little I did wear them I could feel and hear a notable downgrade.

the material is to scratchy, just listened to a jazz track and it sounded much better. Ok maybe first impression was overly bad… new song came on and it sounds much better, Bass is still “mushy” yet impactful. Mids are more forward and highs are also brighter. Song I’m listening to currently:

Just listened with the leather and it is yet again much better with the leather pads.

Also I now need magnetic pads on all my headphones, it is amazing how awesome it is to swap pads with these.


Magnetic pads on more headphones would be great. It’s one feature I would love to have on my headphones. Just one query though, are they stable? Do they stay on the headphones without moving about?



Yes, they are held pretty firmly in place. You have to more or less intentionally pull them off. I’m very impressed with how they implemented this feature on the cascade. I’m less enthused about the placement of the cable inputs into the cups, they get in the way and push into the pads when folded. The cables can get pretty beat up because of the position.


Ah right, thanks for explaining. It’s an interesting implementation though. Sometimes trying to remove headphone pads I feel like I am going to damage the pads or the headphone itself. Although I don’t really have to remove the pads from my headphones very often.

I think that for someone who’s pad rolling, the magnetic pad feature on the Cascade would make it a easier method of removal. If it can be proven it’s a reliable and stable design feature long term it would be a great feature to add to more headphones in future. What are your thoughts?



Yeah, I wish it was on more headphones. It has a nice hold and yet is easy to swap.


Man, these really do well with the ADI-2 DAC, calms the bass down and they begin kick butt. Also I have been listening to them through the JDS labs Element as a power source (ADI-2 is the DAC), I’ve been going through the Spotify Singles complete list and I think acoustic/live music is where they can perform without coming off as overwhelming bass cannons. Also I’ve been using the cloth pads from Campfire (I’m still not digging on the material) it helps calm the bass down and allows your ears to breathe (it has been in the 90s here at the house, thankfully we installed A/C a couple years ago). I mostly have been using these as my nightstand direct into my iPad/Switch etc but I might have to keep them at the desk more for better quality DAC/amps.


Ok so I picked these up barely used, and have been listening to them more and more over the past couple of days… and I think either my ears are acclimated to them or the Bass has gone way down with burn in. I’m not getting that overwhelming bass anymore, it is tight and precise but doesn’t seem to leak into/permeate songs like it did when I first was going through them… I have about just shy of 100hrs worth of listening I think (jeez CA put a timer on your headphones :wink: lol) the acoustics are phenomenal I am really blown away at how fast it is. It picks up acoustic music really well. I’m listening through the CTH currently and it sounds really good (also pairing with some whiskey and sipping rum, cause I’m all about the sweet and savory lol). Oh also I’ve been using the cloth pads more an more, still don’t like the material but they are comfortable and help with the bass and heat. Listening to a more a bass heavy song and the bass just rolls of where I think it should and doesn’t bleed over the rest of the music/or vocals.


Debating if I still need my Cascades. They damn wonderful but I recently picked up the Mobius and can’t help but think the Cascade is a little redundant. Just in terms of being a closed back headphone.

Everything else the Cascade beats out the Mobius in spades


Yeah, I keep going back and forth with getting rid of them…then I listen to them and want to keep them, lol. But I wouldn’t mind swapping them out for Fostex 900mk2, for me sometimes getting rid of gear is like that last step when bungee jumping for the first time lol.


Yes I can relate to that. I find it really difficult to let go of gear but I have done in the past. I just want to keep it all but it is impractical sometimes.



Lately I’m kind of enjoying getting rid of gear. If there’s something I don’t use much or don’t particularly enjoy when I do, I like to think that its next owner will derive more enjoyment from it and I’ll derive more enjoyment from the cash which I could use for eating out, catching a show, buying some music on Bandcamp, or if I’m honest with myself, buying new headphones!


I go through definite phases … and once I get to a point where I start offloading gear it tends to cascade. It happens often enough that I’ve taken to keeping all the original packaging for any audio purchase, just to make selling it easier (and to give a subsequent owner the “full” experience).

Right now I’m on an “acquisition” kick … which has been focused on closed-back flagship headphones, and affordable amps/headphones (lots of Massdrop collaborations there).


Yeah, I developed this habit with camera equipment, to which I have a similar relationship as audio equipment.


I hear you … I’m the same way with photo gear too.

Which was, at least, very helpful, the day I decided to get out of my expansive Canon EF, Fuji XF and Micro Four Thirds systems (accumulated over many years) … and go in a different direction entirely.

Amazing what having the packaging does for resale value.


Okay, I know this is a tangent, but what direction is that?


Leica M (already had it, just kept it), with a trio of compact cameras for travelling light.

And I just jumped into the Sony FE world, as I was missing having something with DSLR type performance/flexibility, as well as auto-focus and a more current sensor (etc.).


Damn dude, you don’t do anything half way, do you? I ended up standardizing on the Olympus MFT line for interchangeable lens stuff (I find it hard to beat the price/performance of the smallish MFT lenses) and use an old Ricoh GR for travel. There’s something empowering about having an APS-C size sensor in my pocket!

I will say that the new Sony full frame stuff exerts a certain draw, but I have to remind myself that I don’t do giant prints and don’t really need it.


Must not look into cameras…do not need…wife would be upset…stay strong…cool technology…do not need…would not use a camera to it’s full potential…resist…


IIRC you have a young child at home just as i do. Paradoxically, I used to use my big camera equipment a lot more before my kids came along. Now, I’m a big adherent to the adage that the best camera is the one you have with you, which invariably means my iPhone. I just spent two weeks in the Rocky Mountains and didn’t even bring my camera gear with me, which a few years ago would have been inconceivable.

So, forget about cameras until the kid’s older and get back to finishing that Bottlehead amp!


yess…my current nemesis…the Bottlehead amp soldering portion…I’m in the middle of new job interviews, Dad life, and life…making it very difficult to find time to do the soldering properly… maybe I’ll start it up tonight and have my wife help with keeping the lil one away from the dangerous stuff. Then this weekend we are going to a Filipino food festival, always something…not that I’m complaining about delicious food though lol. Goal for the rest of the week get a majority of the Bottlehead done if not complete.