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Sennheiser HD650 Impressions Thread - Page 181

post #2701 of 36890

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sphinxvc View Post

I think you're hearing the same thickness or overlapping I speak of with the HD650s.  The K701s in comparison are more airy and every performer on the recording sounds relaxed in their own space without overlapping, not one performer or detail is compromised.  Again, I don't want to over-emphasize these differences - they are in reality subtle.  One thing I'm certain of though is that my amp, the AGD Fun, has reached further into the K701s potential than it has the 650s.  


A very interesting observation, sphinxvc, that the AGD Fun "reached further into the K701s potential than it has the 650s." I hadn't thought of it like that.  Thanks.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shahrose View Post

I'm sure you're aware of the fact that you need more time to adjust and acclimate to a new sound signature. You're coming from the K701, so I can't say I'm too surprised with your initial reaction. I see you already know about the relative importance of burn-in. I'd give them approximately 100 hours (4 days) to open up (though changes will be audible much earlier).

 

I recall you confirming that you had suitable equipment to drive the Senns with. May I ask what specifically that gear is? This could be a synergy issue (warm, dark equipment with an already warm and dark pair of cans etc.).
 

Oh and yes, you're definitely spoiled by stats if that's what you're used to. But, I can't see how one would like the K701 and HD580 and not appreciate the HD650 for atleast its technical merit. The 650s are more revealing than both of the other cans so this could be an indication of the quality of the front-end. In any case, I anticipate a change in your opinion of the 650s in the next month or so. Keep us posted!

 

 

Thanks for the comments. Shahrose. My chain goes like this: Muse Model 10 CD/DVD-A player with balanced, variable analog output > Aesthetix Calypso, zero-feedback, balanced dual-mono tube preamp > Fiio E9 > the two headphones. (In-room listening system: BAT VK-120 mono tube amps and Pass Labs Aleph 60, single-ended Class-A solid-state mono amps; Quad 989 electrostatic  speakers and two Vandersteen 2Wq subwoofers run as a stereo pair. I don't mean this as bragging, but you asked what sort of gear I was using.) I know some folks say the Fiio E9 is not adequate to pair with the 650s, while others argue ardently that it is exceptional (esp.  for its price). Maybe it is a bottleneck in the system at present, maybe not.

 

The thing is, I had to get some kind of desktop amp to audition and burn-in headphones while I explored the head-fi world (remember, I am new to this side of the high-end hobby). I don't want to spend too much money until I figure out what my preferences are. Then I will be prepared to put larger expenditures in the right direction (e.g., HD 800, orthodynamics, or electrostats). I particularly don't want to spend too much on conventional amps yet, because it seems likely, with my sonic preferences, that I will ultimately go in the direction of Stax systems.

 

I appreciate your observations. As I indicated in my original post, I am not going to seriously evaluate the HD 650s until they have something like a solid week of burn-in. Some will think this wacky, but I had the K701 running around the clock for over a month before I really liked them without needing to add EQ.  
 

 

post #2702 of 36890

^ that's the first time I've heard of anyone using a preamp with a headphone amp.  Too bad your Calypso doesn't have a headphone jack, seems like it'd make a pretty sweet head-amp.


Edited by sphinxvc - 3/16/11 at 11:16pm
post #2703 of 36890

I just received my HD650 2 days ago, I've only had time to unbox them and try them on.  Now I need for break them in and get my Bottlehead Crack amp built.  Fingers are crossed, it looks like next weekend is the day for the build.

 

James

post #2704 of 36890
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffreyfranz View Post

 


A very interesting observation, sphinxvc, that the AGD Fun "reached further into the K701s potential than it has the 650s." I hadn't thought of it like that.  Thanks.

 

 

Thanks for the comments. Shahrose. My chain goes like this: Muse Model 10 CD/DVD-A player with balanced, variable analog output > Aesthetix Calypso, zero-feedback, balanced dual-mono tube preamp > Fiio E9 > the two headphones. (In-room listening system: BAT VK-120 mono tube amps and Pass Labs Aleph 60, single-ended Class-A solid-state mono amps; Quad 989 electrostatic  speakers and two Vandersteen 2Wq subwoofers run as a stereo pair. I don't mean this as bragging, but you asked what sort of gear I was using.) I know some folks say the Fiio E9 is not adequate to pair with the 650s, while others argue ardently that it is exceptional (esp.  for its price). Maybe it is a bottleneck in the system at present, maybe not.

 

The thing is, I had to get some kind of desktop amp to audition and burn-in headphones while I explored the head-fi world (remember, I am new to this side of the high-end hobby). I don't want to spend too much money until I figure out what my preferences are. Then I will be prepared to put larger expenditures in the right direction (e.g., HD 800, orthodynamics, or electrostats). I particularly don't want to spend too much on conventional amps yet, because it seems likely, with my sonic preferences, that I will ultimately go in the direction of Stax systems.

 

I appreciate your observations. As I indicated in my original post, I am not going to seriously evaluate the HD 650s until they have something like a solid week of burn-in. Some will think this wacky, but I had the K701 running around the clock for over a month before I really liked them without needing to add EQ.  
 


 

 

I really do think you're spoiled by electrostats, but the fact that you still enjoy the K701 and HD580, but not the 650 is why I haven't recommended you switch over to a set of STAX O2MK1/BHSE just yet.

 

Your headphone gear is more than adequate to get a feel of the 650s. I suspect this might just be a result of your sound preference, in which case, I'd highly recommend auditioning the HD800s, which sound closer to the K701 except with far superior technical performance.

 

Going back to the 650s though, if you still feel the same way after burn-in (and earpad deformation/break-in <-- important), then you could either sell the cans ofcourse, or try a silver cable with them which will undoubtedly change their MO to one that's cooler, leaner, faster and more resolving/transparent. However, I still have a sneaking suspicion that your impression will become more favourable after burn-in and adaptation, so lets wait and see.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sphinxvc View Post

^ that's the first time I've heard of anyone using a preamp with a headphone amp.  Too bad your Calypso doesn't have a headphone jack, seems like it'd make a pretty sweet head-amp.


Well, a preamp is pretty close to a headphone amp. It's not uncommon to see such a setup in the high-end section.

 

post #2705 of 36890

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shahrose View Post

I really do think you're spoiled by electrostats, but the fact that you still enjoy the K701 and HD580, but not the 650 is why I haven't recommended you switch over to a set of STAX O2MK1/BHSE just yet.

 

Your headphone gear is more than adequate to get a feel of the 650s. I suspect this might just be a result of your sound preference, in which case, I'd highly recommend auditioning the HD800s, which sound closer to the K701 except with far superior technical performance.

 

Going back to the 650s though, if you still feel the same way after burn-in (and earpad deformation/break-in <-- important), then you could either sell the cans ofcourse, or try a silver cable with them which will undoubtedly change their MO to one that's cooler, leaner, faster and more resolving/transparent. However, I still have a sneaking suspicion that your impression will become more favourable after burn-in and adaptation, so lets wait and see.

 

Well, a preamp is pretty close to a headphone amp. It's not uncommon to see such a setup in the high-end section.

 

I am hopeful that you are right on all counts. BTW, to clear up any confusion, I don't actually think the HD 580s are a great sounding phone; I may have over-spoke in a previous post. I just find it comfortable, like an old pair of slippers. And also, I have much higher expectations for the HD 650, so I am perhaps more invested in getting a SOTA sound out of them. I really don't want to have to go all the way to the expense of STAX. BTW #2, can you elaborate on why you said, specifically, O2 Mk.1, vs. O2 Mk. II?

 

Sphinxvc: I have used a tube  preamp in front on the E9 only with the K701, because I thought it warmed them up and gave a beautiful, holographic sound with more air.

 

Thanks again, fellas, for alll your guidance. regular_smile%20.gif
 

 

post #2706 of 36890

Just a couple of pics of my new (7 year old senns), with driver mod and new homemade cable (that I got from a bloke in Turkey).

 

The driver is dampened with a very fine slice from foam earplug (I didn't choose the colour)

senns 2.jpg

 

 

 

 

The Cable is 100%(or near as) copper and is very good considerig the price (£79). Check out Ebay uk and you'll find it. 

 

They are sounding pretty good to boot, I've tried so many driver dampening materials to lift the veil but keep the bass tight and I think I've got it spot on now.

 

 

senns 1.jpg

post #2707 of 36890
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffreyfranz View Post

 

I am hopeful that you are right on all counts. BTW, to clear up any confusion, I don't actually think the HD 580s are a great sounding phone; I may have over-spoke in a previous post. I just find it comfortable, like an old pair of slippers. And also, I have much higher expectations for the HD 650, so I am perhaps more invested in getting a SOTA sound out of them. I really don't want to have to go all the way to the expense of STAX. BTW #2, can you elaborate on why you said, specifically, O2 Mk.1, vs. O2 Mk. II?

 

Sphinxvc: I have used a tube  preamp in front on the E9 only with the K701, because I thought it warmed them up and gave a beautiful, holographic sound with more air.

 

Thanks again, fellas, for alll your guidance. regular_smile%20.gif
 

 


The O2Mk1 is the more neutral/uncoloured of the two. This fact has led to recent revisions of the newer Mk2 to sound more like (though not identical to) the Mk1. If you really want to go SOTA, wait for the STAX C32 to be finalized. Actually, the new SR-507 is also another great alternative to the O2Mk1.

 

Anyhoo...that's a topic for a different thread :)

 

 

 

post #2708 of 36890



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shahrose View Post



 

I really do think you're spoiled by electrostats, but the fact that you still enjoy the K701 and HD580, but not the 650 is why I haven't recommended you switch over to a set of STAX O2MK1/BHSE just yet.

 

Your headphone gear is more than adequate to get a feel of the 650s. I suspect this might just be a result of your sound preference, in which case, I'd highly recommend auditioning the HD800s, which sound closer to the K701 except with far superior technical performance.

 

Going back to the 650s though, if you still feel the same way after burn-in (and earpad deformation/break-in <-- important), then you could either sell the cans ofcourse, or try a silver cable with them which will undoubtedly change their MO to one that's cooler, leaner, faster and more resolving/transparent. However, I still have a sneaking suspicion that your impression will become more favourable after burn-in and adaptation, so lets wait and see.


Well, a preamp is pretty close to a headphone amp. It's not uncommon to see such a setup in the high-end section.

 


These comments are "right on target." 

 

I've been trying out Stax Stuff (i.e. the 007t II, 507's and 02 MKII's)... and compared to my "new version" HD650's (modified)... I think I like the HD650's just as well, or better. 

 

Of course, my "new version" HD650's have the RAL Cryo-silver cable, and I've removed the foam lining, and replaced it with nylon stocking.  And... they're driven by the WA6 SEm... or... the Millett MiniMAX (which sounds like the WA6 SEm with the Senns).  This combo makes my HD650's sound incredibly fast, clear, and detailed... with great dynamics and soundstage.  And... of course... the bass and mids are superb!

 

This combo sounds so good, in fact, I may even end my Stax quest.  Though, the 507's and 02 MKII's do sound great (especially the 507's) - but, the HD650 combo above just sounds so similar, at a far lesser cost.  Even if I get an even better electrostat amp, I really don't think the Stax stuff can sound a lot better than my HD650 set up... and... at a significant price premium.  Though, admittedly I tend to prefer the dynamics and impact of the Senns, over the more "polite, refined" sound of the Stax.

 

So... if you want to avoid spending a lot of money... to come to the same conclusion... you may just want to "tweak" your HD580/600/650's as I have.      
 

 


Edited by Gradofan2 - 3/18/11 at 7:08am
post #2709 of 36890
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gradofan2 View Post



 


These comments are "right on target." 

 

I've been trying out Stax Stuff (i.e. the 007t II, 507's and 02 MKII's)... and compared to my "new version" HD650's (modified)... I think I like the HD650's just as well, or better. 

 

Of course, my "new version" HD650's have the RAL Cryo-silver cable, and I've removed the foam lining, and replaced it with nylon stocking.  And... they're driven by the WA6 SEm... or... the Millett MiniMAX (which sounds like the WA6 SEm with the Senns).  This combo makes my HD650's sound incredibly fast, clear, and detailed... with great dynamics and soundstage.  And... of course... the bass and mids are superb!

 

This combo sounds so good, in fact, I may even end my Stax quest.  Though, the 507's and 02 MKII's do sound great (especially the 507's) - but, the HD650 combo above just sounds so similar, at a far lesser cost.  Even if I get an even better electrostat amp, I really don't think the Stax stuff can sound a lot better than my HD650 set up... and... at a significant price premium.  Though, admittedly I tend to prefer the dynamics and impact of the Senns, over the more "polite, refined" sound of the Stax.

 

So... if you want to avoid spending a lot of money... to come to the same conclusion... you may just want to "tweak" your HD580/600/650's as I have.      
 

 


What kind of music do you listen to? I was just listening to a few Can SACDs on my HD650 and I couldn't ask for better. But I mostly listen to classical and it seems to me that the 650's soundstage isn't expansive enough to handle a full orchestra. I have been told that both Stax and the HD 800 are better phones by far for classical. 

 

post #2710 of 36890



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post

Just a couple of pics of my new (7 year old senns), with driver mod and new homemade cable (that I got from a bloke in Turkey).

 

The driver is dampened with a very fine slice from foam earplug (I didn't choose the colour)

senns 2.jpg

 

 

 

 

The Cable is 100%(or near as) copper and is very good considerig the price (£79). Check out Ebay uk and you'll find it. 

 

They are sounding pretty good to boot, I've tried so many driver dampening materials to lift the veil but keep the bass tight and I think I've got it spot on now.

 

 

senns 1.jpg



Are you talking about the proverbial "dark veil"? It used to annoy me, too. Then I changed my amp to the Black Cube Linear and, if anything, my HD 650 now sounds a hair too bright. I never expected to be saying that these phones sound bright, but now they do, at least to me. The brightness is slightly annoying only on certain recordings. Other recordings sound just fine.


Edited by Heidegger - 3/19/11 at 2:50am
post #2711 of 36890
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heidegger View Post



 



Are you talking about the proverbial "dark veil"? It used to annoy me, too. Then I changed my amp to the Black Cube Linear and, if anything, my HD 650 now sounds a hair too bright. I never expected to be saying that these phones sound bright, but now they do, at least to me. The brightness is slightly annoying only on certain recordings. Other recordings sound just fine.



I've read that 650's after 2008 have a brighter signature, not sure how much of that is true or not.. Mine are from around 2005 and have always been warm sounding. Having said that I was always happy with the sound until I bought other hp's (Denon,Grado) and then I decided they where a bit too polite.. and so I tried a few mods. The good thing about the foam mod or changing cable is that you can always go back to stock if need be (as long as youre careful when removing foam).

I've actually changed the driver mod again following this photo..(yes I'm obsessed!) and I'm now using toilet paper instead of rubber..ha ha. This has brought the bass out a little better without controlling it too much.

It's the top end that benefits most from the foam mod, much more attack and sharpness. 

 

That's a great amp you have there and If you are hearing a bright side to the 650's then that's probably a good thing, the better the amp with the 650's then the more they come out of themselves. I'm going to get the Graham Slee Solo soon and see what that does for mine.

post #2712 of 36890
Quote:
Originally Posted by sphinxvc View Post

When I A/Bed to compare vocals, something about the HD650s vocals sound more natural



Vocals are outstanding on the 650, one of the best things they do.

post #2713 of 36890
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post


Yesterday I was listening to my HD-650 for quite a long time and they were kind of tiring my ears out fast and they just didn't sound the same as I remembered and my ears were ringing when I got done. The next day everything was back to normal and no problems at all. Turns out I was just very very tired or stressed out. It could have been the weather too. I know that sounds crazy, but some small things can effect someone's hearing. Even allergies!

 

 

 

 



 



I agree, but would add two factors: one, when I'm wearing them and doing something else like working at my computer or reading, it's like the blood that should be going to my ears is going to my eyes and the headphones start getting fatiguing; two, the quality of recordings varies. I find that the phones sound too bright specifically with certain recordings, then I switch to something else and they sound fine.

 

post #2714 of 36890

Hi Guys,

 

I am a new HD 650 owner and a newby to this forum and was wondering if someone could help me with something. 

 

I keep reading about this "foam mod" and was wondering if someone could direct me to the post with instructions on how to do this mod?  I tried doing a search but all I could get were posts talking about the mod and and could not find the actual post showing how to do it.  Any help with this would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks everyone and have a great weekend.  By the way, love the forum, have learned tons of stuff in a very short period, you guys are great and so full of knowledge that it is unreal.

 

golffnutt

post #2715 of 36890
Quote:
Originally Posted by golffnutt View Post

Hi Guys,

 

I am a new HD 650 owner and a newby to this forum and was wondering if someone could help me with something. 

 

I keep reading about this "foam mod" and was wondering if someone could direct me to the post with instructions on how to do this mod?  I tried doing a search but all I could get were posts talking about the mod and and could not find the actual post showing how to do it.  Any help with this would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks everyone and have a great weekend.  By the way, love the forum, have learned tons of stuff in a very short period, you guys are great and so full of knowledge that it is unreal.

 

golffnutt

 

 

Not certain that this mod's necessary if you have a new HD650 or adequate gear to drive and compliment these cans. Here's a guide anyway.

 

http://apuresound.com/hdsennmod.html

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