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HiFiMAN HE-500 Reviews

Windsor

HiFiMAN HE-500 planar headphones

Posted

Pros: Neutral frequency balance, plenty of frequency extension

Cons: Possibly the price and the weight, some may prefer a darker sound signature.

Intro   It’s been an eventful week for me in which I’ve received three pairs of headphones in four days: a new Audio Technica ATH-M50s, a loaner Audez’e LCD-2, and a loaner HiFiMAN HE-500. I got quite intimate with music via the LCD-2 and was rather wowed by it (see here for more on that). I’ve also been sitting with the HE-500, and my first impressions are that it’s another great headphone that shines in many ways.   The following impressions are based on listening to music via 320 kbps and Apple Lossless audio format files played via iTunes and fed via an optical cable to a Lavry DA 10 DAC/Amp.   Overall, the HiFiMAN HE-500 is a neutral-sounding...
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Kasper

Just realized what you guys mean by “eargasms” and that I can get multiples!!!

Posted

Pros: Tonality, smooth grain free unforced stereo perspektive, price

Cons: heavy and low comfort

    Reviewed item: Hifiman HE-500 Used equipment: CD: Rega Saturn Amp: Rudistor RPX-33evo8 Kimber PBJ interconnect, diy powercables and Isotek Orion conditioner     Received the he-500 very safely packaged from Jan Sieveking as part of the European loaner-program.   And boy am I glad I signed up for that!!!     I have been living for years with my ath-w1000 because I really couldn’t find a suitable alternative. While it is a bit too harsh for my tastes and to bright a have builded a whole system around it to compensate that, because I love the comfort brought by the wing system and comfy pads, and the deeply layered...
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plin

HE-500 vs Sennheiser HD-650, using EQ.

Posted

Pros: Clear sound, creamy mids, more prominent lows and highs

Cons: comfort

  I had the opportunity to hear HE-500 under the EU loaner program organized by the EU importer (thank you SievekingSound). I am not really an audiophile (I don’t usually hear critically or do I notice small details in soundstage, etc) but I do enjoy good sound. I have, also, very limited sound experience, both with live music and high end equipment, so please keep this in mind when reading the below and use a fair amount of grain of salt.   I have compared HE-500 sound with Sennheiser HD-650 (‘new’ version) which is the only HQ headphone I own. I used mostly European jazz, folk and classical music for evaluating and comparing the two. DAC/AMP used are CEntrance...
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WhiteCrow

World class sound for a resonabal price.

Posted

Pros: Great sound, Built well, Preformance<Price, Comfort, accesories.

Cons: comfort for some, Needs a good set up.

  The HiFiMan HE-500, practically perfect in every way. The HE-500 were pretty new territory for me. I have always used Dynamic headphones and was content with them. Then These seductive sirens caught my eye and well....head-fi had it's way with my better judgment and wallet; and by god I'm glad it did! DR.Fang has stuck diamonds and gold with these headphones and has certainly showed me the ways of the Planar Magnetics mystical powers. First off I would like to start by saying that these headphones are the most expensive headphone I have invested in and the set up to along with them as well. My first encounter with these headphones was very eye opening; reading reviews about...
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daerron

A great allround headphone

Posted

Pros: Neutral, bass response and impact, smooth and detailed midrange, value for money

Cons: Heavy, Flimsy velour pads and cable, amp requirements.

My HE-500 review Source: Audiolab M-DAC (USB output). First impressions based on Asus Essence STX. Headphone Amp: Lehmann Audio Black Cube Linear       On first listening to the HE-500 I found a lot that reminded me of the Sennheiser HD580 which I still regard as my reference in terms of what a neutral headphone should sound like. On first listen to the HE-500 you will immediately notice the exceptionally clean and clear sound you get with an orthodynamic transducer which Hifiman are masters of. Switching between the HD580 and HE-500, the HD580 (which I thought up till then to be pretty good in the clarity stakes) to be much grainier by comparison,...
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Skylab

Mini-review: HiFiMan HE-500 Planar-Magnetic Headphones

Posted

Pros: Outstanding overall performance

Cons: somewhat heavy

Mini-review: HiFiMan HE-500 Planar-Magnetic Headphones   Fang from Head-Direct was kind enough to loan me a pair of HE-500 for review.  The HE-500 are billed as a more efficient version of the HE-6, although there are some other differences, both in design and in sonics.  They are also a little different looking, in that the casing is a very nice gun-metal grey:       Taken on its own, the HE-500 are really an exceptionally good headphone.  While they still require a somewhat powerful headphone amp, I was able to drive them with no problem from the Woo WA2, WA6, Trafomatic Head One, Decware Mini-Torri, Musical Paradise MP-301 mk2, and...
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JustinBieber

Great Headphones with some drawbacks.

Posted

Pros: Excellent bass, easy listening/no fatigue, Large soundstage width, pricing, build quality

Cons: Timbre is lacking, heavy, ringing, detail

I am currently using a loaner pair of HE-500's and thought I'd give my thoughts on the headphones and how they compare to my current pair I was planning on upgrading (Sennhesier HD 600). Keep in mind these are all subjective thoughts, what may be a con for me can be a pro for you based on your preferences. I loaned a pair from The Cable Company, http://www.thecableco.com/Product/NEW-Headphone-Lending-Library.    The Pros.   Bass: The HE-500 has some of the best bass I have ever heard on any headphone and absolutely dominates the HD600. There is no mid-bass hump that I hear present in most headphones, the sub-bass has great extension and can really...
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Chromako

Fun yet civilised, but not recommended for treble-heads or for detail retrieval.

Posted

Pros: Excellent bass, great impact and body, surprisingly comfortable for large noggins.

Cons: Lack of treble resolution, a bit of ringing, some quality control issues, heavy, hot.

Disclaimer: My opinions are just my own. They do seem to be in contrast to some others' experiences, but we all have different preferences.   I heard great things about this headphone, and really wanted to like it. I can see why they are popular, and they indeed are fun. However, I'm a treble-head, and as one who was spoiled by the beyerdynamic DT880's, I hated them.   (TL;DR: I bought these new from Headroom. Compared to the beyerdynamic DT880's, the HiFiMan's have much, much better bass impact, a fuller body on all frequencies, and less sibilance. The DT880's crush the HE-500's when it comes to treble resolution, and a slight lead in mid and low...
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gevorg

Congested sound, no fun/enjoyment

Posted
I've auditioned these with DACmini for about a week. The overall sound is congested and seems to be missing something. Comparing to D5000, these have no fun factor at all. Add the fact that the comfort is much worse, the HE-500s had to go. As always, YMMV.
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