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Sennheiser HD650 Impressions Thread - Page 182

post #2716 of 36872
Last week I got my HD650 and the first thing I listened to was a Mozart Piano Concerto. I really like the "back in the middle of the hall" feeling of listening to that CD but to be honest I've never heard much in person of orchestra concerts and none at all in recent memory. But it sounded a lot like what I thought an orcestra would sound like from the 20th row or something.

So last night I heard the very same orchestra as that recording (Orpheus) doing a different Mozart Piano Concerto (#20 instead of #27) with a different pianist (Rudolph Buchbinder instead of Richard Goode) but still, in person and in a pretty nice concert hall. I've got to say I wasn't struck by the feeling that "I've heard this before" exactly but it was a very similar sound and feeling to listening to recorded music on the HD650. Pretty cool actually.

Now fast forward to this morning. I re-listened to that same Mozart No. 27 with Richard Goode and Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. Yep, pretty different sound. The balance of fiddles versus low strings was different, strings vs. woodwinds, orchestra versus piano, even the overall timbre of the combined sound. So I figured while the HD650 does a convincing simulation it is a bit hyped in the low end and altogether too "pretty" in the way the various voices separate out and the articulation of phrases.

Here's the interesting part...next I listened to a recording of Rudolph Buchbinder with the Vienna Symphony from a couple decades ago. This time its' a different orchestra but same soloist and exactly the same Mozart PIano Concerto No. 20. Guess what. It sounded like the concert last night! Not exactly the same of course. But I've never listened toa recording at home and gotten such a similar feel as a live performance.

The newer Orpheus/Goode CD is one of my favorite things to listen to. I like it better than the Buchbinder/Vienna recording. But apparently that's because I like the actual Concerto better. How about that?
post #2717 of 36872


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post



 

 

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



Thank you olor1n for that link.  I sure have said "new to me", they are however used headphones that are in mint condition even though they are several years old I would expect, not really sure, I didn't think to ask the seller.  Is there anyway I can tell how old they may be?  Thanks again for the link. 

post #2718 of 36872

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post


 

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


I completely agree with this. I've tried several mods over the years with the 650s and despite their initial appeal, have always ended up returning to the stock form. The mods improve an area, but always at the cost of another.

 

The best way to improve the 650s is through equipment upgrades and, later, cables. If you know how to use a high-band parametric EQs well, that can be used to your benefit as well, but it's a temporary and crude fix and is something I would avoid unless really necessary.

 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Hutto View Post

Last week I got my HD650 and the first thing I listened to was a Mozart Piano Concerto. I really like the "back in the middle of the hall" feeling of listening to that CD but to be honest I've never heard much in person of orchestra concerts and none at all in recent memory. But it sounded a lot like what I thought an orcestra would sound like from the 20th row or something.

So last night I heard the very same orchestra as that recording (Orpheus) doing a different Mozart Piano Concerto (#20 instead of #27) with a different pianist (Rudolph Buchbinder instead of Richard Goode) but still, in person and in a pretty nice concert hall. I've got to say I wasn't struck by the feeling that "I've heard this before" exactly but it was a very similar sound and feeling to listening to recorded music on the HD650. Pretty cool actually.

Now fast forward to this morning. I re-listened to that same Mozart No. 27 with Richard Goode and Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. Yep, pretty different sound. The balance of fiddles versus low strings was different, strings vs. woodwinds, orchestra versus piano, even the overall timbre of the combined sound. So I figured while the HD650 does a convincing simulation it is a bit hyped in the low end and altogether too "pretty" in the way the various voices separate out and the articulation of phrases.

Here's the interesting part...next I listened to a recording of Rudolph Buchbinder with the Vienna Symphony from a couple decades ago. This time its' a different orchestra but same soloist and exactly the same Mozart PIano Concerto No. 20. Guess what. It sounded like the concert last night! Not exactly the same of course. But I've never listened toa recording at home and gotten such a similar feel as a live performance.

The newer Orpheus/Goode CD is one of my favorite things to listen to. I like it better than the Buchbinder/Vienna recording. But apparently that's because I like the actual Concerto better. How about that?


Interesting impressions, and ones that mirror my own experience (in terms of comparisons to the real thing). It really does depend on the recording. It's hard to tell what the sound engineers wanted us to hear. For this reason, I feel it's better to focus on whether the reproduction sounds good or not, rather than accurate.


Edited by Shahrose - 3/19/11 at 10:03am
post #2719 of 36872
Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post



 

 

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



I too would agree with that, my senn's were starting to collect dust that's why I started modding, and once you start it never ends ha ha

 

Having said that, its all about trying to achieve your own personal sound and if you can get it by modding, then it's a lot cheaper than buyng a high end amp to do it..?  

 

post #2720 of 36872

I've been listening to the new Strokes album the last few days through my Audioegines and wasn't really feeling this latest outing from one of my favourite bands. I've just started listening to it through my HD650 for the first time and it's suddenly clicking. I love how engaging these cans are.

post #2721 of 36872

I went off to my first Head-fi meet today with big expectations for my HD650s.  I was expecting to hear bigger soundstage (on par with the K701s), better dimensionality, and better imaging.  If this actually happened, it would have hit me in the face.  I've only had my K701s for a week but I decided to lug them along to the meet as well just for kicks and I'm glad I did.  The meet conditions weren't half-bad for listening.  From what the regulars were saying, there was a lower turn-out than usual.

 

I started with the 650s and the Meier Corda Concerto + Stagedac.  Not much of an improvement.  Onto the Schiit Lyr + NFB-12 as DAC: inferior to the Concerto (just a synergy issue I suppose as the LCD2s were phenomenal with the Lyr, but not the 650s or 701s).  Onto a Woo Audio WA6 SE + NFB-12 as DAC.  Still not impressed.  Final try: off to try them on a Woo Audio WA22 off of (what looked like) a Woo Audio transport...not impressed at all.  I was very underwhelmed with my the HD650s on even the most high end gear.  To my disappointment, I did not find that great increase in soundstage, dimensionality or imaging I was supposed to.  A few fellow head-fi'ers came along with me experimenting and were equally underwhelmed by the HD650s compared to the K701s, the HD800s, the T1, the HE-6, and LCD-2s and a pair of D2000s.  The HD650s were most underwhelming of all.  The K701s on the other hand held their own against the HD800 very well.  While I tried to improve the HD650s to the level of the K701s soundstage and imaging and failed, I managed to correct the tonality of the K701s with high end tube amps.  The Woo WA6 SE and the Woo WA22 both provided a very HD650 midrange tonality to the normally thin (at least in the midrange) K701s.  The K701s soundstage actually improved with the WA6 SE, becoming very much like a bubble of sound on your head.  So much perspective gained in one afternoon.  I'm selling my HD650s very soon.


Edited by sphinxvc - 3/20/11 at 12:56am
post #2722 of 36872

Man, I wish there were meets like that where I live. Shame the HD650 didn't live up to what you were expecting.

post #2723 of 36872

I would say HD 650 is a beauty undercovered

she needs extreme makeover to show how good she looks (DAC, amp, cable)

and its a little tight on the head, hopefully it gets better after few week

post #2724 of 36872

Ok, my philosophy with headphones is that if you are overwhelmed by something in the sound, that means that something is not right with the sound reproduction. A natural headphone should not be 'impressive' in any specific part of the sound, that implies that there isn't a balance to the presentation. If there is a really specific part of the sound that hits you, that means that it is not reproducing the whole recording truthfully, that it is sugarcoating part of the sound. While that sugarcoating may be fun and cool for a little while, I've found that I cannot seriously listen to such a headphone for very long. I've always stuck with the HD650s because I feel that they are the ultimate in natural sound reproduction of any headphone that I've heard. They don't overemphasize any aspect, and have a very intricate sense of positioning.

 

Now, more specifically to your meet experiences, Sphinxvc, I don't know why you expected the HD650 to have a significantly larger soundstage than the K701. I don't know of anyone that has described the HD650 as having a tremendous soundstage when compared to the K701. Now, I would say (having owned both) that the HD650 has superior dimensionality and imaging to the K701. For me, and I have posted this elsewhere on the forums, the K701 is like a giant room with a nature scene projected against the walls. It's pretty cool how big it all feels, but when you get close and really examine the sound, it loses a lot of reality and depth. The HD650 is much more like actually being out in that nature scene. You might not feel like it's huge and expansive, but when you examine each piece of the sound, it's extremely real and fits very well in the overall soundscape.

 

YMMV, of course, and you may just like the K701 more! Power to you.

post #2725 of 36872

Quote:

Originally Posted by olor1n View Post

Man, I wish there were meets like that where I live. Shame the HD650 didn't live up to what you were expecting.


While I think I'll own one of the higher end headphones one day, for now I just wanted something of an all-rounder, and I was hoping the 650s would be it.  After all I'd read on Head-fi I thought it would be the HD650s that would gain the K701s strengths and become that can, but it turned out to be the K701s that gained the HD650s strengths.  One issue that's still not solved and probably won't ever be was the bass of the K701s.  I find it lacking on about 5% of all music I come across.  I find it able to match the HD650s 100% in depth but only about 85% in impact.  That's a compromise I can live with though as the next best transducer I found was the $1,400 HD800.  

post #2726 of 36872

Quote:

Originally Posted by logwed View Post

Ok, my philosophy with headphones is that if you are overwhelmed by something in the sound, that means that something is not right with the sound reproduction. A natural headphone should not be 'impressive' in any specific part of the sound, that implies that there isn't a balance to the presentation. If there is a really specific part of the sound that hits you, that means that it is not reproducing the whole recording truthfully, that it is sugarcoating part of the sound. While that sugarcoating may be fun and cool for a little while, I've found that I cannot seriously listen to such a headphone for very long. I've always stuck with the HD650s because I feel that they are the ultimate in natural sound reproduction of any headphone that I've heard. They don't overemphasize any aspect, and have a very intricate sense of positioning.

 

Now, more specifically to your meet experiences, Sphinxvc, I don't know why you expected the HD650 to have a significantly larger soundstage than the K701. I don't know of anyone that has described the HD650 as having a tremendous soundstage when compared to the K701. Now, I would say (having owned both) that the HD650 has superior dimensionality and imaging to the K701. For me, and I have posted this elsewhere on the forums, the K701 is like a giant room with a nature scene projected against the walls. It's pretty cool how big it all feels, but when you get close and really examine the sound, it loses a lot of reality and depth. The HD650 is much more like actually being out in that nature scene. You might not feel like it's huge and expansive, but when you examine each piece of the sound, it's extremely real and fits very well in the overall soundscape.

 

YMMV, of course, and you may just like the K701 more! Power to you.

 

 

I was overwhelmed by the Sony MDR-R10s, I was overwhelmed by the Qualias at times, I was overwhelmed, to a lesser degree, with the K1000s, but I wouldn't call anything wrong in their sound reproduction. 

 

I don't believe I wrote "larger than"...more along the lines of "equaling."  Track back some pages and you'll read my questions regarding specific facets of the 650s that improve as it scales, the soundstage, dimensionality and imaging seemed to be the consensus.

 

We all perceive sound differently and so much of this is subjective, I'm not trying to drive any point here, was just sharing my impressions from the meet.


Edited by sphinxvc - 3/20/11 at 2:06am
post #2727 of 36872


wow thats huge at least it saved u 1k u woulda spent upgrading source and amplification

 

maybe for your taste in music the k701 is just better the lack of bass would be quite huge to the electronic genre

Quote:
Originally Posted by sphinxvc View Post

I went off to my first Head-fi meet today with big expectations for my HD650s.  I was expecting to hear bigger soundstage (on par with the K701s), better dimensionality, and better imaging.  If this actually happened, it would have hit me in the face.  I've only had my K701s for a week but I decided to lug them along to the meet as well just for kicks and I'm glad I did.  The meet conditions weren't half-bad for listening.  From what the regulars were saying, there was a lower turn-out than usual.

 

I started with the 650s and the Meier Corda Concerto + Stagedac.  Not much of an improvement.  Onto the Schiit Lyr + NFB-12 as DAC: inferior to the Concerto (just a synergy issue I suppose as the LCD2s were phenomenal with the Lyr, but not the 650s or 701s).  Onto a Woo Audio WA6 SE + NFB-12 as DAC.  Still not impressed.  Final try: off to try them on a Woo Audio WA22 off of (what looked like) a Woo Audio transport...not impressed at all.  I was very underwhelmed with my the HD650s on even the most high end gear.  To my disappointment, I did not find that great increase in soundstage, dimensionality or imaging I was supposed to.  A few fellow head-fi'ers came along with me experimenting and were equally underwhelmed by the HD650s compared to the K701s, the HD800s, the T1, the HE-6, and LCD-2s and a pair of D2000s.  The HD650s were most underwhelming of all.  The K701s on the other hand held their own against the HD800 very well.  While I tried to improve the HD650s to the level of the K701s soundstage and imaging and failed, I managed to correct the tonality of the K701s with high end tube amps.  The Woo WA6 SE and the Woo WA22 both provided a very HD650 midrange tonality to the normally thin (at least in the midrange) K701s.  The K701s soundstage actually improved with the WA6 SE, becoming very much like a bubble of sound on your head.  So much perspective gained in one afternoon.  I'm selling my HD650s very soon.



 

post #2728 of 36872

Sphinx's reactions are bringing a lot of insight on stuff I haven't had the pleasure of hearing, yet. Namely the HD650's.

 

I immensely enjoy the K 701's, too. They're a definite keeper for me.

 

I suspect you and I have very similar taste.

 

It is apparent the HD650 is not exactly what you're looking for. However, I'm still dying for a pair....soon, real soon.

post #2729 of 36872
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeust0999 View Post

 

It is apparent the HD650 is not exactly what you're looking for. However, I'm still dying for a pair....soon, real soon.



Well, it looks like he'll be selling them real soon, so you'll probably get a great deal on a low-mileage pair!

post #2730 of 36872
Quote:
Originally Posted by logwed View Post

Ok, my philosophy with headphones is that if you are overwhelmed by something in the sound, that means that something is not right with the sound reproduction. A natural headphone should not be 'impressive' in any specific part of the sound, that implies that there isn't a balance to the presentation. If there is a really specific part of the sound that hits you, that means that it is not reproducing the whole recording truthfully, that it is sugarcoating part of the sound. While that sugarcoating may be fun and cool for a little while, I've found that I cannot seriously listen to such a headphone for very long. I've always stuck with the HD650s because I feel that they are the ultimate in natural sound reproduction of any headphone that I've heard. They don't overemphasize any aspect, and have a very intricate sense of positioning.


 


I believe you to have a very odd philosophy. I think I lost your rationality after "overwhelmed", but I get what you're saying.  Of course, it is all subjective.

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