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post #3166 of 36835
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post



 


Okay, since everyone else has had a go at answering the question addressed to me, I'll now have a go. tongue.gif

 

I'll be as honest as I can. I had a bit of acclimatizing because the 650 has certain virtues that are unique to it, and as I said in another thread it can be as hard to give up as smoking. At first I found the LCD-2 a little bright, with a somewhat "exposed" treble, and a sound that seemed to stand away compared to the 650. Clearly the soundstage was wider and more open, and the sound very smooth and more extended at both ends, but I still didn't immediately warm to it. During A/Bing I wasn't sure for a while if the LCD-2 even had lower listener fatigue, since this is a strong point of the 650.  In fact I have to say I'm still acclimatizing to some degree, but I've come far enough to recognise the LCD-2's clear superiority in certain key areas and that, having recognised them, I couldn't go back to the 650. Put simply, the LCD-2 just sounds more like music. It seems to unravel the threads the 650 is not able to and open the music up, not in the sense of dissecting it (though inevitably there's a little of that) but of laying out orchestral colours and timbres better. I will never knock the 650 at its price range as I think it's unbeatable and unique. It has a brilliant balance and a way of presenting the music that's always easy to listen to, and one of the least palatable facts about moving up is that what you move up to is unlikely to be as flattering to the music as the 650. In fact I'd go so far as to say that the 650 represents a plateau that most people need not contemplate crossing; you could easily remain there and be happy for years, or at least until Sennheiser comes up with the AD700. But if you begin to feel, as I did, that you're not hearing the orchestral timbres clearly enough, that you can't picture the orchestra in front of you with the holographic clarity you crave, then yes, the LCD-2 is the obvious next step (in fact maybe the only one, given reports of the brightness of rival phones). It won't give you an orchestra in your own longe-room--I've just about given up on that dream--but it will allow you to imagine one with less effort.

 

However, for anyone contemplating a purchase there are other factors. The LCD-2 is heavy. It's damn heavy and nothing is going to change that. It clamps hard. That will probably be ameliorated by time, but the LCD will never be a comfortable, forget-it's-there experience like the 650 is after the clamping wears off. This is an important factor I'm still coming to terms with. Another is that the LCD is unlikely to be resilient. It's built well enough, but still in a homemade way, and I can't imagine these phones surviving too many of those experiences where you jump up to answer the phone and have them ripped off your head. They might fare better than the 650 if you sat on them maybe (though you wouldn't!), but don't drop them on any parquet floors.

 

This might sound trivial, but it's a factor to consider, especially for $900. In fact $900 is a factor to consider. I would only encourage someone to move up to the LCD from the 650 if they really put sound quality top of the list, above price, practicality and even comfort. And don't expect too much, because even though they are a significant step up from the 650, it's not quite that quantum leap people are always talking about.

 

And definitely try to hear them first if at all possible.

 

(Oh, I should add that I don't have a Schiit Lyr or any other fancy amp. That's another $500, which is something else I don't have. Another factor about moving up is that your ancilliaries sometimes have to move up too).

 


I wanted to add that if you are going to move up to the LCD-2's make sure you have a good source , DAC and amp makes all the difference in the world.. I still love my 650's but after 3 weeks the LCD2's are finally starting to rub off on me
post #3167 of 36835
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrScary View Post

after 3 weeks the LCD2's are finally starting to rub off on me



That's what comes of caressing them so lovingly.  smily_headphones1.gif

 

post #3168 of 36835
Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post

 

 

Thanks for the candid assessment there pp312. I'm quite content with HD650, but the glowing reviews these orthos garner make them hard to resist at times. Comfort is a very important consideration for me though, and I also could do with not having to worry about the resilience of such an expensive headphone. This is why I've not made the plunge yet (not sure if I ever will). I do have a Lyr on the way, leaving that door slightly ajar.
 

 


 

You'll have the Lyr and I'll have the LCD-2. Maybe we should consider a marriage of convenience. happy_face1.gif
 

 

post #3169 of 36835
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post




 

You'll have the Lyr and I'll have the LCD-2. Maybe we should consider a marriage of convenience. happy_face1.gif
 

 


The LCD2's sound great with the Lyr well that depends on your DAC and other source equipment but I still love my HD650 they sound good..
post #3170 of 36835
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post



 


Okay, since everyone else has had a go at answering the question addressed to me, I'll now have a go. tongue.gif

 

I'll be as honest as I can. I had a bit of acclimatizing because the 650 has certain virtues that are unique to it, and as I said in another thread it can be as hard to give up as smoking. At first I found the LCD-2 a little bright, with a somewhat "exposed" treble, and a sound that seemed to stand away compared to the 650. Clearly the soundstage was wider and more open, and the sound very smooth and more extended at both ends, but I still didn't immediately warm to it. During A/Bing I wasn't sure for a while if the LCD-2 even had lower listener fatigue, since this is a strong point of the 650.  In fact I have to say I'm still acclimatizing to some degree, but I've come far enough to recognise the LCD-2's clear superiority in certain key areas and that, having recognised them, I couldn't go back to the 650. Put simply, the LCD-2 just sounds more like music. It seems to unravel the threads the 650 is not able to and open the music up, not in the sense of dissecting it (though inevitably there's a little of that) but of laying out orchestral colours and timbres better. I will never knock the 650 at its price range as I think it's unbeatable and unique. It has a brilliant balance and a way of presenting the music that's always easy to listen to, and one of the least palatable facts about moving up is that what you move up to is unlikely to be as flattering to the music as the 650. In fact I'd go so far as to say that the 650 represents a plateau that most people need not contemplate crossing; you could easily remain there and be happy for years, or at least until Sennheiser comes up with the HD700. But if you begin to feel, as I did, that you're not hearing the orchestral timbres clearly enough, that you can't picture the orchestra in front of you with the holographic clarity you crave, then yes, the LCD-2 is the obvious next step (in fact maybe the only one, given reports of the brightness of rival phones). It won't give you an orchestra in your own longe-room--I've just about given up on that dream--but it will allow you to imagine one with less effort.

 

However, for anyone contemplating a purchase there are other factors. The LCD-2 is heavy. It's damn heavy and nothing is going to change that. It clamps hard. That will probably be ameliorated by time, but the LCD will never be a comfortable, forget-it's-there experience like the 650 is after the clamping wears off. This is an important factor I'm still coming to terms with. Another is that the LCD is unlikely to be resilient. It's built well enough, but still in a homemade way, and I can't imagine these phones surviving too many of those experiences where you jump up to answer the phone and have them ripped off your head. They might fare better than the 650 if you sat on them maybe (though you wouldn't!), but don't drop them on any parquet floors.

 

This might sound trivial, but it's a factor to consider, especially for $900. In fact $900 is a factor to consider. I would only encourage someone to move up to the LCD from the 650 if they really put sound quality top of the list, above price, practicality and even comfort. And don't expect too much, because even though they are a significant step up from the 650, it's not quite that quantum leap people are always talking about.

 

And definitely try to hear them first if at all possible.

 

(Oh, I should add that I don't have a Schiit Lyr or any other fancy amp. That's another $500, which is something else I don't have. Another factor about moving up is that your ancilliaries sometimes have to move up too).

 



pp312, may I ask what you are currently using for a source and amp?

post #3171 of 36835



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by thegr8brian View Post

pp312, may I ask what you are currently using for a source and amp?



Source I fear is a grab bag of downloaded MP3 files (mostly hi-bit) played on an Astone media player. Amp is either an Onkyo 9555 integrated (with separate HP amp) or a Muse dedicated (basically a 1st generation Aune). I fear I'm insensitive to sources, or have been up till now, as I've had a lot of very good CD players (including Marantz CD17 Mk2, Rotel 971, Music Hall etc) and couldn't pick a lick of difference from my cheap Sony. Amps I can pick a little better, at least with the LCD. I've been surprised at the clear difference between my two amps, but I'm afraid it's less a difference of superiority as perspective: one will sound better on one recording, the other on another. As I've always maintained, there's far more difference between individual recordings than between Flac and MP3 or between $1000 CD players and amps and $200 ones.

 

Now I suppose you'll tell me that for ultimate bliss all I need is a Schiit Lyr and to buy back that Marantz CD17. However, I spent my last shekels on the LCD-2.  triportsad.gif


Edited by pp312 - 5/11/11 at 7:51am
post #3172 of 36835

Quote:

Originally Posted by pp312 View Post
Okay, since everyone else has had a go at answering the question addressed to me, I'll now have a go. tongue.gif

 

I'll be as honest as I can. I had a bit of acclimatizing because the 650 has certain virtues that are unique to it, and as I said in another thread it can be as hard to give up as smoking. At first I found the LCD-2 a little bright, with a somewhat "exposed" treble, and a sound that seemed to stand away compared to the 650. Clearly the soundstage was wider and more open, and the sound very smooth and more extended at both ends, but I still didn't immediately warm to it. During A/Bing I wasn't sure for a while if the LCD-2 even had lower listener fatigue, since this is a strong point of the 650.  In fact I have to say I'm still acclimatizing to some degree, but I've come far enough to recognise the LCD-2's clear superiority in certain key areas and that, having recognised them, I couldn't go back to the 650. Put simply, the LCD-2 just sounds more like music. It seems to unravel the threads the 650 is not able to and open the music up, not in the sense of dissecting it (though inevitably there's a little of that) but of laying out orchestral colours and timbres better. I will never knock the 650 at its price range as I think it's unbeatable and unique. It has a brilliant balance and a way of presenting the music that's always easy to listen to, and one of the least palatable facts about moving up is that what you move up to is unlikely to be as flattering to the music as the 650. In fact I'd go so far as to say that the 650 represents a plateau that most people need not contemplate crossing; you could easily remain there and be happy for years, or at least until Sennheiser comes up with the HD700. But if you begin to feel, as I did, that you're not hearing the orchestral timbres clearly enough, that you can't picture the orchestra in front of you with the holographic clarity you crave, then yes, the LCD-2 is the obvious next step (in fact maybe the only one, given reports of the brightness of rival phones). It won't give you an orchestra in your own longe-room--I've just about given up on that dream--but it will allow you to imagine one with less effort.

 

However, for anyone contemplating a purchase there are other factors. The LCD-2 is heavy. It's damn heavy and nothing is going to change that. It clamps hard. That will probably be ameliorated by time, but the LCD will never be a comfortable, forget-it's-there experience like the 650 is after the clamping wears off. This is an important factor I'm still coming to terms with. Another is that the LCD is unlikely to be resilient. It's built well enough, but still in a homemade way, and I can't imagine these phones surviving too many of those experiences where you jump up to answer the phone and have them ripped off your head. They might fare better than the 650 if you sat on them maybe (though you wouldn't!), but don't drop them on any parquet floors.

 

This might sound trivial, but it's a factor to consider, especially for $900. In fact $900 is a factor to consider. I would only encourage someone to move up to the LCD from the 650 if they really put sound quality top of the list, above price, practicality and even comfort. And don't expect too much, because even though they are a significant step up from the 650, it's not quite that quantum leap people are always talking about.

 

And definitely try to hear them first if at all possible.

 

(Oh, I should add that I don't have a Schiit Lyr or any other fancy amp. That's another $500, which is something else I don't have. Another factor about moving up is that your ancilliaries sometimes have to move up too).

 


Well I'm glad you finally found your step up.  I think the LCD2s are the natural upgrade for HD650 aficionados*  [*who have tried other phones and find them uncomfortably bright.]

 

And I think I'd agree on all points of your account.   Resolution, soundstage and tonal balance are all better than the 650s.  And comfort, though I find them more comfortable than my 5LEs (still breaking in), is still inferior to the 650s or any of the light-weight dynamics, or feather-weight Stax.  

 

So are you using HPO or speaker taps?

 

I don't think the LCD2s are special in any way with the Lyr, aside from the fact that they give them the power they need, compared to other head-amps.  But if you have a receiver or preamp lying around, you can match or best that power output easily.  I was planning to buy one myself (the Lyr) but after hearing my 5LEs with my receiver (HPO) and after hearing the Lyr this past weekend, I don't think I'm convinced it is any better.  Of course the LCD2s sound phenomenal out of the RSA Apache, balanced Isabellina HPA or WA22, and so would my 5LEs I would think, but you just don't need a dedicated headphone amp with orthos.  I think headphone amp manufacturers are cashing in on people who for whatever reason won't go the receiver or pre-amp route with their orthos.  They are not the delicate things dynamics are.

 

Also want to throw this out there, if you have a receiver lying around, I found the 5LEs to be...well, better in every way than the 650s and 701s just as pp312 found the LCD2s to be better in every way (to a lesser degree, of course).  Anyway, it's a no brainer of an upgrade at $500 used.  (Provided of course, you don't have HRTF issues with phones with a bit more treble presence than the 650s.  Try it before you knock it though.)  


Edited by sphinxvc - 5/11/11 at 9:22am
post #3173 of 36835
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post



 


Okay, since everyone else has had a go at answering the question addressed to me, I'll now have a go. tongue.gif

 

I'll be as honest as I can. I had a bit of acclimatizing because the 650 has certain virtues that are unique to it, and as I said in another thread it can be as hard to give up as smoking. At first I found the LCD-2 a little bright, with a somewhat "exposed" treble, and a sound that seemed to stand away compared to the 650. Clearly the soundstage was wider and more open, and the sound very smooth and more extended at both ends, but I still didn't immediately warm to it. During A/Bing I wasn't sure for a while if the LCD-2 even had lower listener fatigue, since this is a strong point of the 650.  In fact I have to say I'm still acclimatizing to some degree, but I've come far enough to recognise the LCD-2's clear superiority in certain key areas and that, having recognised them, I couldn't go back to the 650. Put simply, the LCD-2 just sounds more like music. It seems to unravel the threads the 650 is not able to and open the music up, not in the sense of dissecting it (though inevitably there's a little of that) but of laying out orchestral colours and timbres better. I will never knock the 650 at its price range as I think it's unbeatable and unique. It has a brilliant balance and a way of presenting the music that's always easy to listen to, and one of the least palatable facts about moving up is that what you move up to is unlikely to be as flattering to the music as the 650. In fact I'd go so far as to say that the 650 represents a plateau that most people need not contemplate crossing; you could easily remain there and be happy for years, or at least until Sennheiser comes up with the HD700. But if you begin to feel, as I did, that you're not hearing the orchestral timbres clearly enough, that you can't picture the orchestra in front of you with the holographic clarity you crave, then yes, the LCD-2 is the obvious next step (in fact maybe the only one, given reports of the brightness of rival phones). It won't give you an orchestra in your own longe-room--I've just about given up on that dream--but it will allow you to imagine one with less effort.

 

However, for anyone contemplating a purchase there are other factors. The LCD-2 is heavy. It's damn heavy and nothing is going to change that. It clamps hard. That will probably be ameliorated by time, but the LCD will never be a comfortable, forget-it's-there experience like the 650 is after the clamping wears off. This is an important factor I'm still coming to terms with. Another is that the LCD is unlikely to be resilient. It's built well enough, but still in a homemade way, and I can't imagine these phones surviving too many of those experiences where you jump up to answer the phone and have them ripped off your head. They might fare better than the 650 if you sat on them maybe (though you wouldn't!), but don't drop them on any parquet floors.

 

This might sound trivial, but it's a factor to consider, especially for $900. In fact $900 is a factor to consider. I would only encourage someone to move up to the LCD from the 650 if they really put sound quality top of the list, above price, practicality and even comfort. And don't expect too much, because even though they are a significant step up from the 650, it's not quite that quantum leap people are always talking about.

 

And definitely try to hear them first if at all possible.

 

(Oh, I should add that I don't have a Schiit Lyr or any other fancy amp. That's another $500, which is something else I don't have. Another factor about moving up is that your ancilliaries sometimes have to move up too).

 



Cheers pp312, and congrats! that is really helpfull and insightful. And sorry to all the new 650 fans reading all this LCD2 stuff... but, as has been pointed out, they are in the next league up from the 650's and so I would expect to hear a difference. Isn't it a shame though, that after having the 650's for years, we now have to spend soooo much more to get to the next level..? Is it clever marketing or is it a simple fact that with this hobby of ours; once we reach a certain point, we inevitably have to pay lots of money to get a little (debatable) better SQ, simply because it is hard to get any better? There is a big gap from.. what.. $300? to $900? I'm sure HP companies would make a killing, especially at the moment to release something inbetween.

 

As you say, HD700 needs to happen.

 

Oh, and I bet the little dot I+ would give the LCD2's a nice lift, just got one for my RS1's and it has transformed them. It's desiged for low imp phones and with a change of opamp sounds "effing amazing!" and for approx $70.. can't go wrong.    

post #3174 of 36835

Quote:

Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post

"... we inevitably have to pay lots of money to get a little (debatable) better SQ..."

 

How is it debatable?  

 

"There is a big gap from.. what.. $300? to $900? I'm sure HP companies would make a killing, especially at the moment to release something inbetween."

 

I think Hifiman recognized this gap, the 5LEs fill it.


 

 

post #3175 of 36835
Quote:
Originally Posted by sphinxvc View Post

Quote:

"... we inevitably have to pay lots of money to get a little (debatable) better SQ..."

 

How is it debatable?  

 

"There is a big gap from.. what.. $300? to $900? I'm sure HP companies would make a killing, especially at the moment to release something inbetween."

 

I think Hifiman recognized this gap, the 5LEs fill it.

 


 

 


 

I used the word "little" as debatable because some people hear a big difference where as some only hear a "little" in regards to upgrading from mid to high-end in general. Is the sound " $600 better? because that would make the LCD2's 3 times better than the 650's. I'm sure there are new owners that will say they are. But I personally doubt it. 

 

Go- on Hifiman!! Well done that man! biggrin.gif  
 

 

post #3176 of 36835

Quote:

Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post

 

I used the word "little" as debatable because some people hear a big difference where as some only hear a "little" in regards to upgrading from mid to high-end in general. Is the sound " $600 better? because that would make the LCD2's 3 times better than the 650's. I'm sure there are new owners that will say they are. But I personally doubt it. 

 

Go- on Hifiman!! Well done that man! biggrin.gif  
 


Depends what you're looking for, as pp312 said, if you "put sound quality top of the list, above price, practicality and even comfort." than yes.


Edited by sphinxvc - 5/11/11 at 11:05am
post #3177 of 36835
Quote:
Originally Posted by sphinxvc View Post

Quote:


Depends what you're looking for, as pp312 said, if you "put sound quality top of the list, above price, practicality and even comfort." than yes.


Which brings us back to square one. I said "we inevitably have to pay lots of money to get a little (debatable) better SQ" how big would your price be for better? priceless?

 

Are you bored or something ha ha

 


 

 

post #3178 of 36835

Never mind.  I get it.  I misinterpreted, thought you meant it's debatable whether it's better, but you meant debatable how much better.  =/

post #3179 of 36835
Quote:
Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post




Which brings us back to square one. I said "we inevitably have to pay lots of money to get a little (debatable) better SQ" how big would your price be for better? priceless?

 

Are you bored or something ha ha

 


 

 


The LCD-2's are more than a little better sound quality they are in a different league than the 650's and shouldn't even be on this thread. This hobby is very draining for X amount of sound quality increase we pay $$$$ I just look at it as a hobby which most hobbies cost money.
post #3180 of 36835
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrScary View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post




Which brings us back to square one. I said "we inevitably have to pay lots of money to get a little (debatable) better SQ" how big would your price be for better? priceless?

 

Are you bored or something ha ha

 


 

 




The LCD-2's are more than a little better sound quality they are in a different league than the 650's and shouldn't even be on this thread. This hobby is very draining for X amount of sound quality increase we pay $$$$ I just look at it as a hobby which most hobbies cost money.
 



You're the one who brought them into this thead ha ha.. you're the one who has now got me looking at them!

 

 Couldn't agree more though, I paid 3 times the amount for my RS1's from my 225's but the SQ is certainly not 3 times better. That is my point... the old diminishing returns. OR clever marketing... because of "the gap" The gap that means, if you want to upgrade fom a hp like the 650 you have to pay A LOT more. The gap that the "hifiman" has been clever enough to cash in on. Though when I think of it.. denon does one too..

 

You reach a peak with the 650's. If you want to get higher then you will have to really splash out.      

 

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