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Sennheiser HD650 Impressions Thread - Page 953

post #14281 of 26505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amictus View Post
 

Dclaz - you have had an answer to your questions already! Comapared to the AKG 701s the build of the Sennheisers feels and looks a little 'cheaper' - the plastic is gloss rather than matt on the speaker housing which accounts for some of that effect. Also I like the way the metal headband on the 701s looks. This is superficial, however. The comfort of the HD 650s on my head is just great. They fit me perfectly. My hat size is 7 1/4 btw, if that helps. I also like the way that the cans hug the ear, whereas the 701s loll about a bit, the weight all being borne (painfully) by the top of the head.    

Thanks, hat size is probably a good indicator. I should try and found out mine :)

post #14282 of 26505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amictus View Post
 

Saren - thank you for your thoughtful post. The listener burns in too, maybe?

Yep, definitely. Psychologically you become accustomed to the sound of a particular headphone after a period of time and any change to another one usually takes getter used to as well.

 

Likewise, stepping up from a lower headphone to a higher one means that sometimes you don't notice the strengths of the "better" one until you step back down. A lot of people are used to 100 dollar entry headphones, sometimes when they try a higher model they don't hear much difference, but after a week when they put the lower pair on it turns out to be something like "where did that  X go, wheres the soundstage etc".

 

Coming to the Beyer T1 from the HD650 and LCD I struggled to appreciate them at first  being used to a dark sound, but after listening extensively I loved them. As soon as I went back the the LCD I was shocked at the loss of treble and soundstage, and it felt awkward at the time. Thus I personally love stepping back to each of my headphones after a long period, it is almost like listening for the first time again. You rediscover the subtleties music with the different tonalities and styles of the presentation in each phone. Part of something I love in the hobby.

 

When I first got the HD650, for me I felt was good but not that great at first, but incredibly as I listened for the first hour I began finding myself suddenly getting into the music more and more. I though, there couldn't be anyway for them to burn in this fast? It just sounded better and better as I went on. Personally for me this has always been getting used to or "burning in" my own perception of the sound signature. A mental thing. I have left headphones in the closet for days to burn them in before and I still think what made the most difference for me having the previous audio palate being pushed aside in my mind and getting used to the new sound. YMMV as some people swear by mechanical burn in, I don't really but people hear differently I guess.

 

That's just how it is for me, some other people may very well feel differently when listening.


Edited by Saren - 11/10/13 at 1:04am
post #14283 of 26505

Great post Saren. That period of adjustment is often overlooked. It applies to components as well, where certain changes aren't immediately apparent (dac upgrades, balanced vs. single-ended). I was acutely aware of it when I owned the LCD-2 alongside the HD800 and in upgrading my rig to accommodate those headphones. It's why I don't place much value in people's brief impressions of gear (i.e. at a meet). Sure there are general things like voicing that can be perceived in no time and certain aspects can impress on initial listen. That can't trump living with the gear for a period of time though. Things may not be immediately apparent when going up the ladder, but try going down after spending some time at those higher rungs.

 

There are self proclaimed experts on this forum who'll argue absolutes and drown out those with actual experience. After a certain point, improvements (and flaws) are only fully revealed after extended use IMO. This raises the question of diminishing returns but that consideration is for the individual to justify. Others really have no business imposing those views on others.

post #14284 of 26505
Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post
 

Great post Saren. That period of adjustment is often overlooked. It applies to components as well, where certain changes aren't immediately apparent (dac upgrades, balanced vs. single-ended). I was acutely aware of it when I owned the LCD-2 alongside the HD800 and in upgrading my rig to accommodate those headphones. It's why I don't place much value in people's brief impressions of gear (i.e. at a meet). Sure there are general things like voicing that can be perceived in no time and certain aspects can impress on initial listen. That can't trump living with the gear for a period of time though. Things may not be immediately apparent when going up the ladder, but try going down after spending some time at those higher rungs.

 

There are self proclaimed experts on this forum who'll argue absolutes and drown out those with actual experience. After a certain point, improvements (and flaws) are only fully revealed after extended use IMO. This raises the question of diminishing returns but that consideration is for the individual to justify. Others really have no business imposing those views on others.

 

I would love to go back and compare a new pair of hd650 against mine that have a couple hundred hours on them. I don't deny that there is a certain amount of mental adjustment to the sound as well. 

 

Some aspects of a headphone will take time to appreciate and also to dislike. Comfort is something that can take a while. It's like a pair of new shoes that you try on in the store. You may think, "hey, these are okay they'll be fine. They look great. (think a woman in a pair of high heels) " But spend 8-10 hours in them the next day and see how you really feel. Hp's that are heavy have this effect on me. I try them on, love the signature and think that the comfort will be fine and that I can live with it. But then I spend 4-5 hours in them the next day for several days and find out how I really feel. 

 

There are some members here whom I trust implicitly. The reason for that trust is that over time I've learned that we hear sound in a very similar fashion and share a like philosophy about what sound signature is pleasing. This trust comes through time and trust. It's a process of getting to know someone. I would never take a members opinion as gold whom I didn't know even if they were held in high esteem here. People will always hear sound differently and judge what's enjoyable based on individual  preferences. 

 

It all comes down to what you find enjoyable and what you're willing to spend to get it. 

post #14285 of 26505

Good stuff above! I continue to listen and have made a surprising discovery. The HD 650s can be used with an MP3 player and sound better without my intervening FiiO E7. Actually, so can the Q701s. The quality is not audiophile - soundstage restricted, the sound rather less analytical, but the HD 650s deliver real music with my preferred Sony NWZ-Z1060. Both headphones also produce music from the only current iPod in the house - a little 8GB affair (Nano?).

 

Because of the ludicrous EU cap on volume output from these devices, recordings that have been transferred at a low level don't really survive with these big cans, but plenty of tracks do. Tom Waits sounded glorious, for example. Mahler 9 with Karajan - a 320 kbps purchase from Universal rather than a rip, was too quiet. This has been a divisive issue on this forum, and I have to say that IMHO you can get music out of your MP3 player with the HD 650s. I did not expect that to be the case. Yes, they deserve better, but don't we all?

post #14286 of 26505
i am fascinated by the geographical spread of this blog! Wisdom coming and practical advice coming in from Georgia, Van Dieman's Land, Melbourne etc. Among other things I have learned that I am not the only nocturnal listener. I will report further when the new cable arrives for the HD 650.
post #14287 of 26505

I know this friend of mine who has used a pair of HD600s solely out of his Iphone 4 for over a year. The sound volume is undoubtedly large enough for most non-classical tracks. But from memory I felt that everything was a little messy. The bass was prominently loose and soundstage was weird. And I guess I never liked the idea of carrying such big open cans on the street. 

But you may have made a good point there. I think it's mainly owing to Senn's tuning of sound that makes them capable of producing music (rather than analyzing the poor quality) out of mobile sources. 

 

Btw, Karanjan's Mahler 9 is definitely one of my favorite. 

post #14288 of 26505
I was using my iPhone 5 and HD650 this morning, because I didn't want to wake my fiancée up with my computer rig. It was still enjoyable. It wasn't the best they've ever sounded but for sitting around just reading the news it was still enjoyable.

(Bass was lacking, mids were sloppy, and it took 75% volume to sound decent. For those wondering.)
post #14289 of 26505

I wouldn't wear big cans in the street, but listening to music in bed is another matter... That's where the Sony NWZ-Z1060 comes in. Yes, I know that I could have a first-class setup next to the bed! It's probably only a matter of time.

 

I need some more advice, actually. On my desk I have the laptop, the M-DAC, the Lovely Cube and the headphones. I could do with a proper CD source - better than the laptop. Does anyone know of a good CD transport or player with a small form factor? It's getting a bit cramped in here. It's not urgent, as I have recently spent quite a bit, but you know how it is - it could always be better.

post #14290 of 26505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amictus View Post
 

I wouldn't wear big cans in the street, but listening to music in bed is another matter... That's where the Sony NWZ-Z1060 comes in. Yes, I know that I could have a first-class setup next to the bed! It's probably only a matter of time.

 

I need some more advice, actually. On my desk I have the laptop, the M-DAC, the Lovely Cube and the headphones. I could do with a proper CD source - better than the laptop. Does anyone know of a good CD transport or player with a small form factor? It's getting a bit cramped in here. It's not urgent, as I have recently spent quite a bit, but you know how it is - it could always be better.

A cable for the HD650s!(Wait, do you already have one of those coming? Can't remember if its you that said that a little while ago.) Yes, I think a CD transport would be good, or a Astell & Kern AK100/120. 

post #14291 of 26505
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfetan44 View Post
 

A cable for the HD650s!(Wait, do you already have one of those coming? Can't remember if its you that said that a little while ago.) Yes, I think a CD transport would be good, or a Astell & Kern AK100/120. 

 

Yes - a Russ Andrews cable upgrade is in a depot in London, waiting for someone to deliver it. It should arrive tomorrow I don't really want to buy more IEMs right now. The Shure E4C-Ns work well enough and are easily driven by MP3 players. (I say that now, of course, but we all know that there is a l-o-n-g road ahead of me $$$$$). After the cable, the balanced amp and cable, the ideal cd/sacd source etc. etc.

 

The HD 650s are settling down and opening out beautifully (or I am - see the discussion above and the insightful posts of Saren [the Lord Saren? - Oh, sorry, that's the Lord Sauron], olor1n and  MattTCG), I am listening for pleasure now, rather than working away at analysis of what is going on. As far as I am concerned, the HD 650s are now up and running. The Q701s have many merits but are bass light and have a constant tendancy to treble shrillness which is not just a ruthless revelation of the faults of the source material, (IMHO), but clearly discernible distortion. They give in under stress. The Senns love stress - they just sing.

post #14292 of 26505

Yeah, I love the HD650s. A very warm, forgiving sound.

post #14293 of 26505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Copperears View Post

Listen at different volume levels. I find the HD650s start to sound more precise if you set the right volume for the specific recording. They don't suffer from a lot of ear-generated distortion at higher volumes, but they also, I find at least, are crisper and more detailed at lower volume levels. Sometimes if you have a very warm recording, as Waits tends to have, it actually sounds better a little louder. More midrange presence. Hard to describe, just encouraging you to experiment.

I'm sorry, Copperears, but I don't think that I have acknowledged this. How very right you are! The Senns are very volume sensitive. If find increasing the volume useful more often than reducing it, but what do I know? I have only burned these cans in for 15-20 hours or so and listened for 4-5, maybe. Anyway, your insight is very valuable, thank you so much.

post #14294 of 26505
No apology needed! Just trying to help you enjoy. I've spent far too much time in my life stepping on my own toes with arbitrary requirements for seeming perfection; anything I can do to help others avoid such error, is great!

Spent too much of my time chasing the impossible goal of trying to recreate absolutely live performance experience in the living room. Never going to happen. So now, too late in life, have switched my approach to simply enjoying everything where it is, instead of forcing it to my will. smily_headphones1.gif

Enjoy!
post #14295 of 26505

Well, the Russ Andrews cable has arrived. It is rather splendid, despite being heavy and awkward and resembling something from a 1930s sci-fi movie. The change is profound. The lateral soundstage has increased 10° each side with a gap dead centre and the sound has become less comfortable and cushioned, resembling the Q701s rather more, particularly as regards the digital glare on upper strings. I don't like the sound much. Back to burning-in the kit and the listener. Panic setting in.

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