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Sennheiser HD650 Impressions Thread - Page 462

post #6916 of 18284

I just mounted a classy aged brass coat hook on the wall beside my desk and wrap the cables around it.  For $3 at Home Depot, its a cheap and elegant fix.

Quote:
Originally Posted by daigo View Post

 

I got tired of the long HD650 cable as well and built a shorter 5' long cable for it to use at my desk.  Makes for less clutter and risk of rolling over the cable with my chair.  The other option is to coil up a portion of the cable near the plug and have that sit on your desk to shorten it.

post #6917 of 18284
Quote:
Originally Posted by bleudeciel16 View Post

 

I think I might swap the cables on the HD650, with the main reason being to get rid of the dangerously long cable.  (the long cable was the reason my HD595's died, I tripped on the cable so many times, causing the headphones to fly off the desk and slam onto the floor)

 

I have a large playlist of FLAC music on repeat.  I started it last night so I'll stop it when I get home and call it good.  I suppose I could just leave the Lyr on for a whole week to let the tubes get nice and settled.

 

Ouch.  Yeah, not snagging it is probably the best argument for recabling, ever biggrin.gif

 

Oh don't think there's a need to leave the Lyr on for that long to do it.  Honestly, I wouldn't often leave a tube amp on unattended anyway.  (don't panic for today, initial burn-in and all that), and we're talking about small signal tubes, not the big power tubes.  Big power tubes can light up real nice in a spectacular failure.  Mixtures of ozone and mercury are rather unpleasant.  Small signal tubes generally won't ever do that, though the bottle can crack in very spectacular rare events.  Still, safety first.  Never leave it on unattended, or if you do so do it sparingly when you know you won't be too far from home.  And I'd never leave it on overnight.  Will it erupt into spectacular flame?  Extremely unlikely.  But it's good to be sure wink.gif  Melted HD650s aren't pleasant.  Neither is being immolated alive.  But most importantly think of the 650s....

 

Yeah, people DO do it.  But people do lots of stuff.  And there's no real need to. biggrin.gif  Just enjoy the sonic change as the tubes burn in, and leave them on while you're doing things around home if you want to speed up the burn-in.   Weekends I often leave them on during the day until the end of the night, but not if I go out. Kind of like halogen lights.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tilpo View Post


They got blown? How did that happen?
And could you give a source on the burn-in measurement of the HD650? Seems like and interesting read.

 

Oh it was back at the beginning of April.  I had a thread on that asking for suggestions for upgrades.   Ended up with HE-400 after being talked out of HE-500 and into HE-400 by some pros who's opinions I really respect and also ended up with D5k as a compliment as a result.  Then missed my HD650s, ordered new drivers, and splurged on a silver cable to treat myself for their loss wink.gif  I learned in the process how beautifully modular and removable every square inch of the HD650 is. 

 

It happened due to a defective Lyr.  I have two Lyrs, both from the same batch, only one is defective.  One other Head-Fier lost HD-650s to a Lyr from the same batch with the same symptoms.  There was a third head-fier with similar symptoms who hasn't, as far as I know, had real damage from it yet.  I advised him with Jason's blessing to send it back, but I don't believe he has yet either.  The symptoms are obvious, but I misinterpereted them.  Used it for months with the symptoms without flaw.  It's unrelated to power-on thump at all, however the day I blew the drivers I plugged the headphones in before the relay closed, and the combination of the "pop" I get as a result of the defect each time I plug in (no matter when I plug in) plus the normal thump of the relay closing pushed it over the edge, and I believe separated the voice coils on both drivers (severe rattling, loss of all bass response on the left side, etc, etc.  No physical tear on the diaphragm.)  Left more severely than right, but both bad enough.  The pop was loud enough from 4 feet away.

 

I don't know the exact nature of the defect yet, and neither does Schiit because the other person it happened to is in the UK and didn't send it back, and I've been dragging my feet, still using the amp.  I'll probably send it in shortly.  I keep my old set of damaged 650 drivers tethered dangling from the stock cable and plug that in after the relay clicks to "pop" the bad charge out of it.  After that I can plug and unplug however much I want without issue.  Something is storing a charge after powerup and holding onto it until a load is connected. I suspect a bad capacitor, it could be a bad/malformed trace to ground from the relay or something too. 

 

It's a very specific defect, not the nature of the Lyr itself (I always have to qualify it because any time I mention this people jump and say "yeah I've heard those Lyrs are dangerous.", referring to the power thump issues from before they had relays. This has nothing at all to do with power on thump, it happens the first plug in after power-on even if it's 30 min later. Different tubes seem to reduce the effect of it as well, and every now and again it doesn't do it at all.)

 

I suspect the surge is just under the damage threshold and had I not plugged in before the relay snapped to combine the normal sound with the already-near-the-limits defect pop, I'd still be plugging in daily none the wiser of the danger.

 

Regarding the measured HD650 burn-in, it's from the king of measurements who is a prominent former head-fi-er who we can't name who happened to design an excellent DIY amp and DAC.  He reviewed HD650 (finally) sometime in the past year or two and mentioned with the usual eye-roll the burn-in factor and did mention that he did actually measure very slight effects from burn-in as included in his charts.  He made no comment as to if he felt the sound AUDIBLY changed or not, but he did confirm that a burn-in effect, even a minor one, is a measurable effect.  I'm sure you can find it easily enough wink.gif

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bleudeciel16 View Post

 

The "B" word scares me.  I wish there was a way to limit the output of the Lyr without messing with the sound.  I keep imaging somehow cooking my 650's on accident.  I'll be careful with the volume knob so it shouldn't be an issue but it still worries me in the back of my mind.

 

Heh, I really wouldn't worry about it if you don't have specific symptoms that I had, which is, the first time I plug in after power on there was a large "pop" or "snap" sound coming from the HD650s, even if I plug in long after the relay closes.  Jason assured me that a small "ping" sound would be normal when plugging in but wouldn't be audible if the headphones aren't on your head.  This sound could be heard from 3 feet away most of the time with the headphones on the stand and is positively not a normal thing to hear.  Both of us with blown 650s had the same symptoms (and the symptoms, for reference also manifested on K702...it's not an HD650 or impedance thing...)

 

Of course the volume knob...yeah if you turn the volume knob up too far on Lyr, or any powerful amp including AV receivers sure you can blow headphones.  But always remember that any sound capable of burning your headphone drivers is likely to burn your EARDRUMS first if they're on your head.  I was fortunate with my incident that they were NOT on my head. eek.gif  Lyr's no more dangerous than any big amp with regard to user error biggrin.gif

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by daigo View Post

 

I got tired of the long HD650 cable as well and built a shorter 5' long cable for it to use at my desk.  Makes for less clutter and risk of rolling over the cable with my chair.  The other option is to coil up a portion of the cable near the plug and have that sit on your desk to shorten it.

 

Yeah, I broke my Cardas 650 cable by rolling it over one too many times with the char, however the length and the durability for being rolled over with a chair were the main reasons I bought it wink.gif  It survived years of that abuse.  But I love my 5' cable now.  6' may have been a hair better, but 5 is pretty good.

 

I coil my long HE-400 cable and keep my AD700 cable in a permanent coil.  But it's still a pain to deal with. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyVee View Post

I just mounted a classy aged brass coat hook on the wall beside my desk and wrap the cables around it.  For $3 at Home Depot, its a cheap and elegant fix.

 

Not a bad idea.  Very studio-chic.  Though it would almost benefit from a 15-20ft cable for that sort of winding.  A 10-footer would be too short for that for me. 


Edited by IEMCrazy - 6/8/12 at 10:30am
post #6918 of 18284
Well, in general a lot of amps don't like it when you plug in a headphone when they are turned on. It creates a momentary short between the right and ground channel, which can damage the output circuitry as well as the headphones. You can protect the circuit against such shorts, but that will always influence the signal at least in some extremely minor way, and hence purist designers may choose to leave it out.
Best thing will always be to either use XLR plugs, or to only plug in the headphones with the amp turned off.
If you want to compare two headphones you could also build a small switch box with two TRS jacks, or just use a splitter.
Edited by Tilpo - 6/8/12 at 10:48am
post #6919 of 18284
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tilpo View Post

Well, in general a lot of amps don't like it when you plug in a headphone when they are turned on. It creates a momentary short between the right and ground channel, which can damage the output circuitry as well as the headphones. You can protect the circuit against such shorts, but that will always influence the signal at least in some extremely minor way, and hence purist designers may choose to leave it out.
Best thing will always be to either use XLR plugs, or to only plug in the headphones with the amp turned off.
If you want to compare two headphones you could also build a small switch box with two TRS jacks, or just use a splitter.

 

Err, that actually runs opposite most advice except for OTL tube amps that I've seen.  The official expectation of most "audiophile boutique" relay-less amps is that you plug it in when it's been on for 30 seconds or so, and unplug before you turn it off to avoid the thumps.  Schiit explicitly intended it to be used that way before they added relays, and with relays officially it doesn't matter, but when I begged Jason for "proper order of setup" just in case of relay failure or to get into proper habit in case I use a relay-less amp in the future, the advice was that proper order is always power on, then wait, then plug the headphones in, then unplug the headphones, then power-off. 

 

I noticed Jack Wu's recommendation is more in line with yours, citing it SHOULD be ok to unplug with it on, if the volume is down, but it's not guaranteed. 

 

O2 is relay-less and as such I always plug/unplug while it's on.  AVR's expect you to plug unplug with it on, though I believe they have a relay during transition.  PCs, iPods, game systems, etc of course are ALWAYS on so it's expected you do it with it on. 

 

But for Schiit amps I'll go with Schiit's idea of what proper order is: and that's plug in AFTER it's on, however the relay makes it so it doesn't matter unless the relay fails.  And my incident was exacerbated precisely because I didn't wait until it was fully on (relay clicked.)  Had I done so I probably wouldn't have had blown drivers, but it's just a minor "if only" since either way the amp is defective and operating in ways it shouldn't.

 

That's not to say your idea is wrong either.  It probably depends on amp design.  Like I said, Woo's site seems more in agreement with your idea, but also suggests that with volume all the way down it should be fine.

post #6920 of 18284
In general thumps like that should be avoided in any case when designing an amp, but if it is a really loud thump I can understand the why it would be better to plug it in post power on.
However, using XLR would be even better.
post #6921 of 18284

I leave my 650s plugged in to my Compass at all times, I just turn it on when I want to use them. I've had them on my head for turning them on and I hear a "click" inside the amp after a few seconds and then the amp starts working but the headphones are totally quiet for both turning on and off (I just tested it to confirm). Yay me?

 

I'll keep that in mind with the O2, plug and unplug while on. And the thing with your Lyr, *shivers* I wouldn't want that to happend with them on my head! Jeez...I might have a mind to sue them if it severely damaged my hearing :O

I hope they paid for your new 650s...

And now it should be safe either way because it has a relay, right?

post #6922 of 18284
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtaylor991 View Post

I leave my 650s plugged in to my Compass at all times, I just turn it on when I want to use them. I've had them on my head for turning them on and I hear a "click" inside the amp after a few seconds and then the amp starts working but the headphones are totally quiet for both turning on and off (I just tested it to confirm). Yay me?

 

I'll keep that in mind with the O2, plug and unplug while on. And the thing with your Lyr, *shivers* I wouldn't want that to happend with them on my head! Jeez...I might have a mind to sue them if it severely damaged my hearing :O

I hope they paid for your new 650s...

And now it should be safe either way because it has a relay, right?

 

there's only a problem if there's a malfunction, which is why they're saying it's safer to wait to plug them in.  in 98% of the time, it should be fine having them plugged in during power on and power off, but if you want to be completely safe, it's better to just plug them in after your amp is done turning on.

post #6923 of 18284

Well I finally have the HD650. This is the headphone that was my "end" headphone when I first started looking at headphones. I literally just began listening to it so i havent made any real comparisons but playing through my Asgard, these sound GREAT! Probably being subjected to confirmation bias but i really like these. First thing i noticed was the soundstage and imaging. Sounds BIG and the raised low end makes it feel big too. Instrument separation sounds better too as now instruments and vocal seem to be coming from different places; might have to do with recording and all that but still, i am a happy customer. 

 

These are the White driver version and I hear no "veiled" sound or muffed whatever. I am using an Asgard too but maybe ill try it straight out of an ipod or something just to see.

Weeee im so happy dt880smile.png

post #6924 of 18284
Have been using my HD650's with my new ALO Audio Jena cable through my Bifrost/Lyr combo and absolutely love the sound!

Started my head-fi journey with the HD650 via a DACport and always thought there was a slight veil. Now with the new cable and DAC/Amp combo these are a completely different headphone.

Can't get enough of them!
post #6925 of 18284
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnman1116 View Post

Well I finally have the HD650. This is the headphone that was my "end" headphone when I first started looking at headphones. I literally just began listening to it so i havent made any real comparisons but playing through my Asgard, these sound GREAT! Probably being subjected to confirmation bias but i really like these. First thing i noticed was the soundstage and imaging. Sounds BIG and the raised low end makes it feel big too. Instrument separation sounds better too as now instruments and vocal seem to be coming from different places; might have to do with recording and all that but still, i am a happy customer. 

 

These are the White driver version and I hear no "veiled" sound or muffed whatever. I am using an Asgard too but maybe ill try it straight out of an ipod or something just to see.

Weeee im so happy dt880smile.png

 

Absolutely... the "new version" HD580/600/650's, when properly amped, and with silver cables (interconnects and phones)... are... as good as it gets!  There just isn't a big improvement to be found with any phones... at least without spending thousands of dollars (literally)!

 

Though, I think I still prefer the AD2000's - just a bit more clarity and detail (more Gradoish)... but... it's still a small difference.

 

The biggest "secret" in Headfi... because so few have actually heard them with the proper set up... or... are focusing on very, very subtle improvements.

post #6926 of 18284

Got my cables from BJC today woot.  Was temporarily using the absolute cheapest RCA cables I had on hand.

 

Got a BJC LC-1  10ft to go from my Xonar Essence STX's digital SPDIF out to my Bifrost.

 

Also got 1ft BJC Belden 1694a interconnect to go between my Bifrost and Lyr.

 

Sounds good.  Slowly replacing every last crappy thing in the chain to make sure I'm giving my HD650's a chance to shine.  Not sure I tell any difference, and if there is, I'm sure it's tiny and/or placebo lol. L3000.gif

post #6927 of 18284
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtaylor991 View Post

I leave my 650s plugged in to my Compass at all times, I just turn it on when I want to use them. I've had them on my head for turning them on and I hear a "click" inside the amp after a few seconds and then the amp starts working but the headphones are totally quiet for both turning on and off (I just tested it to confirm). Yay me?

 

I'll keep that in mind with the O2, plug and unplug while on. And the thing with your Lyr, *shivers* I wouldn't want that to happend with them on my head! Jeez...I might have a mind to sue them if it severely damaged my hearing :O

I hope they paid for your new 650s...

And now it should be safe either way because it has a relay, right?

Your compass has a relay, that is the click you hear.  Lyr (all current production) has the same, as to most AVRs.  If everything is working, there's nary a problem in leaving them connected.  That's what the relay's for.  The trouble arises if the relay breaks.   If it breaks in the "closed" position it's like having a relay-less amp, and you definitely don't want the headphones plugged in when it starts.  If it breaks in the "open" position, you'll just never get sound out of the amp.  Obviously the relays should last a good long time, but they're electro-mechanical and as such are subjected to failure more than any other part of the amp other than the transformer and jack.

 

My issue wasn't related to power-on or startup but was a different sort of defect.  I'll find out soon what the real cause was, but it was a true "broken amp" situation, not a "startup" thing.  But yes, current Lyrs and Asgards, and Valhallas have relays specifically so you can leave you headphones plugged in.  But I don't trust mechanical things to work when I want them to work, so I exercise caution, on any amp, for that reason. 

 

Senn's pretty reasonable about repair pieces so I thankfully did not have to buy a whole new set of 650s, just new drivers.  I learned that every square inch of HD650 is modular and snaps or slides right apart.  Even the gray framing around the black part of the cup is just trim and pops right out.  Defects happen in everything, and I hold my ears whenever I fire up a stereo speaker amp for the first time.  If a headphone pop is "loud" picture sending 200W to an 8" driver cone in a 2ch amp surge until the whole cone deforms, ruptures, or the crossover or coil burns up, sometimes with sparks and everything.  I think we in the audio world get spoiled by things working most of the time.  We're playing with crazy voltages half the time.  I had an Aiwa AVR go defective.  It was a cheap POS HTIB setup.  But even cheap satelites can REALLY blast your ears when they go "pop."  That was my first painful lesson in the dangers of audio equipment failures.  The Lyr incident is trivial in comparison and gave me a heck of a lot more warning that I misinterpereted wink.gif  No audio equipment is guaranteed safe, and failure can often lead to danger, either in terms of dangerous SPL or fire starting.   A popped driver of expensive headphones really sucks, but there are worse, though rare, things that could happen in this hobby.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bleudeciel16 View Post

 

there's only a problem if there's a malfunction, which is why they're saying it's safer to wait to plug them in.  in 98% of the time, it should be fine having them plugged in during power on and power off, but if you want to be completely safe, it's better to just plug them in after your amp is done turning on.

 

Exactly!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnman1116 View Post

Well I finally have the HD650. This is the headphone that was my "end" headphone when I first started looking at headphones. I literally just began listening to it so i havent made any real comparisons but playing through my Asgard, these sound GREAT! Probably being subjected to confirmation bias but i really like these. First thing i noticed was the soundstage and imaging. Sounds BIG and the raised low end makes it feel big too. Instrument separation sounds better too as now instruments and vocal seem to be coming from different places; might have to do with recording and all that but still, i am a happy customer. 

 

These are the White driver version and I hear no "veiled" sound or muffed whatever. I am using an Asgard too but maybe ill try it straight out of an ipod or something just to see.

Weeee im so happy dt880smile.png

Congrats!  HD650's soundstage isn't the biggest in the industry, and its instrument separation isn't the biggest industry, but it has excellent focus, coherence, and imaging like few others! 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by scottv50 View Post

Have been using my HD650's with my new ALO Audio Jena cable through my Bifrost/Lyr combo and absolutely love the sound!
Started my head-fi journey with the HD650 via a DACport and always thought there was a slight veil. Now with the new cable and DAC/Amp combo these are a completely different headphone.
Can't get enough of them!

Same here, back on Headroom Micro (old) and some AVRs I always heard "the sennheiser veil", but on my Lyr&Bifrost setup, no veil at all, just sweet music!   Music during which I stop listening to the headphone and hear only the music!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gradofan2 View Post

 

Absolutely... the "new version" HD580/600/650's, when properly amped, and with silver cables (interconnects and phones)... are... as good as it gets!  There just isn't a big improvement to be found with any phones... at least without spending thousands of dollars (literally)!

 

The biggest "secret" in Headfi... because so few have actually heard them with the proper set up... or... are focusing on very, very subtle improvements.

 

Absolutely.   For thousands, it's still debatable as to what's "better".  Some will argue better detail, better soundstage, etc.  Some argue only slight improvements, but "worthwhile."  My personal argument is: at what point is detail TOO detailed.  HD650 can already out-resolve Redbook audio and show clear difference between a well mastered high-res recording and a well-mastered redbook recording.  So if it can already out-resolve redbook, then where is this "more detail" supposedly coming from?  More detaiil EMPHASIS, yes, but is that a good thing? Opinions vary.

 

You're absolutely right, because of HD650's affordability, especially prior to January's mandatory pricing change, people have been plugging HD650 into poor sources and declaring them "veiled" and "muddy.".  HD800 owners plug them into poor sources too, but they do so knowing they're getting sub-optimal sound out of their $1500 toy.  And because Senns in general are painfully picky about impedance matching and the like, many good, pricy amps are just unfriendly with HD650.  But in a good setup, they're heavenly.  For me, Lyr, Bifrost (BJC & AQ copper connects), and Silver Dragon 650 cable, and a few tubes to roll is heavenly.  Ok, I use my HE-400 mostly for orchestral....HD650 for darn near everything else.  A bit of variety never hurts biggrin.gif

post #6928 of 18284
Quote:
Originally Posted by scottv50 View Post

Have been using my HD650's with my new ALO Audio Jena cable through my Bifrost/Lyr combo and absolutely love the sound!
Started my head-fi journey with the HD650 via a DACport and always thought there was a slight veil. Now with the new cable and DAC/Amp combo these are a completely different headphone.
Can't get enough of them!

 

+1. I use the Toxic Cables Cryo OCC Silver Plated Copper cable with my HD650 and it felt like a veil has been lifted. It seems like a good custom cable is required to take HD650 to its full potential.

post #6929 of 18284

I run my HD 650 with stock cabel through M1 HPA + v-dac II . Absolutley no veil and 100% enjoyment. The sound is big as ****! Love this setup. 

post #6930 of 18284
Quote:
Originally Posted by Velocity View Post

I run my HD 650 with stock cabel through M1 HPA + v-dac II . Absolutley no veil and 100% enjoyment. The sound is big as ****! Love this setup. 

 

Same here, I've run the HD650 on a E9 and Burson and I experience no veil with stock cable.  Even compared to the HE-500 there was no veil... more grain on the HD650 but not veiled to my ears.

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