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Sennheiser HD650 Impressions Thread - Page 500

post #7486 of 36886
I had the asus sonar essence stx till I switched from a desktop to a laptop. For gaming the stx was incredible, but for music listenining I always had the feeling that the computer did kinda influence the analog output signal. For music I always preferred my external amp from the ipod line out.
post #7487 of 36886
Quote:
Originally Posted by meeklo062704 View Post

UPS took long enough, but I finally got my HD650's today. Since this is my first foot into the audiophile world, I have a few questions. They sound pretty good fresh out of the box, and plugged into my Sony home theater in box. So I'm just trying to imagine how much better they sound when they are properly amped and DAC'd. Does sound quality greatly improve with the amp or is that mainly in the DAC? I'm still trying to decide on an amp/DAC, but I'm leaning towards the ASUS Xonar Essence STX since I'll use them 99.9% of the time at home. I was going to go Fiio e17, but I keep reading about a huge improvement in sound between the e17 and the Essence STX, and for $40 more it seems like a no brainer.

 

So I guess I'm looking for some pointers on that decision. Would the STX be a decent place to start? Also, what is the preferred method of burn in? I was just going to plug them in and put Itunes on shuffle.
 

Certainly the better you can feed it the better off you are, but as I often say of HD650, treat it like it's a $1500 headphone and it'll treat you like it's a $1500 headphone.  Take a look at some of the desktop solutions for it, dedicated DAC & amp (or Dac & amp in one unit.)  On a tight budget the O2 + ODAC may be on the radar.  It wouldn't be my FAVORITE sound, it's a bit analytical, but it would perform admirably. 

 

Ultimately it depends what you want to do, but the HD650 is a can that scales very very well, and the higher end you go with your source,  the more performance you can squeeze out of the 650, so it's a question of what you have, what you can spend, and how far up the ladder you want to go. Ardilla pointed out a while ago that with the $2000 Woo WA2, HD650 was comparable, even preferred, to LCD-2, LCD-3, etc. I'm sure you're not buying a $2000 amplifier, but the idea is, the HD650 will always reward every improvement in your chain you throw at it just like the much more expensive headphones.

post #7488 of 36886

After your comments on "the HD650 is not slow it is just the way it is voiced"....

 

Can you advise me on what EQ settings to use to make the sound as exciting and fast as possible?

 

(Using the 31 band foobar EQ)

post #7489 of 36886
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicholars View Post

After your comments on "the HD650 is not slow it is just the way it is voiced"....

 

Can you advise me on what EQ settings to use to make the sound as exciting and fast as possible?

 

(Using the 31 band foobar EQ)

 

Relatively simple, drop the midbass bump between 80-100Hz down by 1-3dB or so, maybe bump 40-80 Hz up progressively from 80 toward 40, bump up from ~4kHz to 8kHz by maybe 4-8 dB progressively up, and do with the rest as you please (presumably you want to bump 8kHz to infinity up a bit too, but it depends how much UHF and "air" you wish to squeeze out of it. That could give you more of a "v" curve (though why you'd want a "v" on HD650 which starts a a frown, I'm not sure, but it's "exciting and fast" sounding.  Basically getting rid of mids and midbass and accenting treble sounds "fast."  You can push the mids down to recessed for a deeper "v" if you really want "exciting"  Personally I'd just do small tweaks to adjust the sound, not try to convert it to a V.  The settings above start there.

 

Use Tyll's FR chart as a guide on what you're compensating.  Use the Raw measurements:

http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/SennheiserHD650.pdf

 

My suggestions aren't final and aren't at the exact frequency you may want to bump on a 31-band, and may create some odd peaks, You'll have to play with it, but those numbers may give you a good start, if a little exaggerated, to dial in what you're looking for.

post #7490 of 36886

The source is another thing I'm trying to figure out too. It didn't seem that vital to have a good disc player, until I saw a video of someone with a $10,000 cd player. I'm sure it's pretty overboard, but I now realize that FLAC files from the hard drive probably isn't the best way to go. I tried them at a friend's house last night through his Denon receiver, and they sounded awesome. We were playing call of duty, and we actually heard birds in the background. So it kind of makes me want to look into a decent receiver. My problem there is I'm just not sure what spec on those determines the driving power. They're always advertised for power to drive speakers, but not much direct mention of headphones.

 

My biggest problem with picking an amp is just trying to weed through the brands, tube amp vs solid state amp, amp/DAC combo vs separate amp and DAC, finding the sweet spot for decent price vs performance, etc.... I jumped into this head first because I'd rather make mistakes with a good pair of cans instead of buying more $100 ones and hoping for the best. I would love to just go find a good audio store, and just try out some amps, but whenever I try for audio on google maps all I get is car audio. Tough spot to be in.
 

post #7491 of 36886

Ask this question in the computer audio section... many more people in there using the STX. If I wasn't using a laptop that is the route I would go. The STX has some incredible specs and is designed to drive high impedance loads like the hd650. For psychological reasons some of us may be biased against a soundcard inside a noisy computer... 

Quote:
Originally Posted by meeklo062704 View Post

UPS took long enough, but I finally got my HD650's today. Since this is my first foot into the audiophile world, I have a few questions. They sound pretty good fresh out of the box, and plugged into my Sony home theater in box. So I'm just trying to imagine how much better they sound when they are properly amped and DAC'd. Does sound quality greatly improve with the amp or is that mainly in the DAC? I'm still trying to decide on an amp/DAC, but I'm leaning towards the ASUS Xonar Essence STX since I'll use them 99.9% of the time at home. I was going to go Fiio e17, but I keep reading about a huge improvement in sound between the e17 and the Essence STX, and for $40 more it seems like a no brainer.

 

So I guess I'm looking for some pointers on that decision. Would the STX be a decent place to start? Also, what is the preferred method of burn in? I was just going to plug them in and put Itunes on shuffle.
 


Edited by muad - 8/16/12 at 10:13am
post #7492 of 36886
Quote:
Originally Posted by muad View Post

Ask this question in the computer audio section... many more people in there using the STX. If I wasn't using a laptop that is the route I would go. The STX has some incredible specs and is designed to drive high impedance loads like the hd650. For psychological reasons some of us may be biased against a soundcard inside a noisy computer... 


I respect the answer on that one. A lot people force their bias instead of admit it, so I appreciate that.

 

Funny side story on my quest for quality sound. I just tried going into a high end home theater store to check out some amps to drive them. The guy who worked was clearly of the opinion that he is THE expert on home audio. Which was funny, because he looked at me like I was the crazy one for saying that headphones needed an amp. He told me I was wrong, he's been doing this for too long to not know what I'm talking about, I clearly bought the wrong headphones, yada yada yada..... So he eventially pulled up the HD650 specs and looked completely dumbfounded. Moral of the story? Stick to the forums where people actually know what they're talking about.

post #7493 of 36886

 

I have been messing about and using this EQ I find it makes things a lot less boring / slow sounding.....

 

Really the HD650 do have quite a relaxing / sleepy sound and lack sub bass but compared to anything else I cannot find a pair that is a better all rounder for <£250....

 

If you ignore the slight shortcommings and enjoy them for what they do (extremely) well then they are an awesome pair of headphones... Also because they are so unfatiguing and smooth you can crank the volume right up and still listen to them for ages with no ear pain etc. If I try listening at HD650 volumes on the D2000 then my ears will be physically in pain within 10 minutes.

post #7494 of 36886

Most reciver headphone jacks are powered from the amp section and that more than enough for any headphone. I have a Onkyo 8255 driving my 650's and they sound great.

post #7495 of 36886
Quote:
Originally Posted by olddtfan View Post

Most reciver headphone jacks are powered from the amp section and that more than enough for any headphone. I have a Onkyo 8255 driving my 650's and they sound great.

 

Really? Do you realize the resistors needed to dumb down the power output on a 50wpc class D receiver? And the noise they will induce, as they surely won't be thin film ones.

 

Also on what other (preferably dedicated) amps have you heard the HD650?

post #7496 of 36886
Quote:
Originally Posted by muad View Post

Ask this question in the computer audio section... many more people in there using the STX. If I wasn't using a laptop that is the route I would go. The STX has some incredible specs and is designed to drive high impedance loads like the hd650. For psychological reasons some of us may be biased against a soundcard inside a noisy computer... 

 

I have the STX and while it sounds ok it's missing some texture. The hd650 is excellent with timbre and texture and using it with the STX is really missing out on what this headphone can accomplish.

post #7497 of 36886
Quote:
Originally Posted by maarek99 View Post

 

I have the STX and while it sounds ok it's missing some texture. The hd650 is excellent with timbre and texture and using it with the STX is really missing out on what this headphone can accomplish.


In your opinion, is there much else out there within $100 that is close or better to the quality of the sound brought out of it? At this point my plan is to only get what I need, but realistically I'll probably end up picking up new components every few months. I have a bad habit of tweaking my computer non stop, and have a feeling that audio won't be any different. So I'm looking at the STX as the "get my foot in the door" stepping stone until I can figure out what equipment will be best for my ears.

 

Unrelated question about burn in. I know some swear by it, and some think it's a placebo. But just in case it's a real necessity, I have a few questions about it. Does method of burn in effect the sound in the long run? Like, if I burn them in with bass heavy music, will they be more inclined to handle bass well later? Or if I go with pink noise, will they keep a more balanced sound later? I'm doing this without an amp until I can make a decision on one, so will an unamped setup be strong to even effectively burn them in?

post #7498 of 36886
Quote:
Originally Posted by meeklo062704 View Post

Unrelated question about burn in. I know some swear by it, and some think it's a placebo. But just in case it's a real necessity, I have a few questions about it.

 

Can of worms.  Avoid.

post #7499 of 36886
Quote:
Originally Posted by sridhar3 View Post

 

Can of worms.  Avoid.


Right after I posted it, I realized that it was probably a big mistake. The jury will please disregard that last comment.

post #7500 of 36886
Quote:
Originally Posted by meeklo062704 View Post


In your opinion, is there much else out there within $100 that is close or better to the quality of the sound brought out of it? At this point my plan is to only get what I need, but realistically I'll probably end up picking up new components every few months. I have a bad habit of tweaking my computer non stop, and have a feeling that audio won't be any different. So I'm looking at the STX as the "get my foot in the door" stepping stone until I can figure out what equipment will be best for my ears.

From what i've heard, the o2 is a good choice as well as the fiio e9, although the o2 would be the better of the two. The oda would probably also be a good choice, but it hasn't been released yet, so you'll have to wait for that one.

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