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Sennheiser HD800 Appreciation Thread - Page 391  

post #5851 of 6600
Quote:
Originally Posted by rawrster View Post

I was wondering about the amping with the HD800. I bought a 50wpc amp for the HE6 but was wondering about if it was safe to try it with the HD800 to connect it straight to the amplifier. Volume won't be an issue since there's a knob and I also have a preamp but wondering if I needed anything like the HE adapter from speakers to 4 pin XLR?

 

In my opinion -- and it's just that, my opinion -- the HD800 are not difficult enough to drive to make me consider plugging them directly into a 50wpc amp. The HD800 sound excellent with good-but-not-overly-powerful amps like the one found in the Grace m903, while the HE-6 take much more grunt to get the job done.

 

The risk/reward continuum is therefore much closer to the "risk" side for me with the HD800. Your calculus might be different.

post #5852 of 6600
Quote:
Originally Posted by Olias of Sunhillow View Post

 

In my opinion -- and it's just that, my opinion -- the HD800 are not difficult enough to drive to make me consider plugging them directly into a 50wpc amp. The HD800 sound excellent with good-but-not-overly-powerful amps like the one found in the Grace m903, while the HE-6 take much more grunt to get the job done.

 

The risk/reward continuum is therefore much closer to the "risk" side for me with the HD800. Your calculus might be different.

 

In my experience I find the HD800 easier to drive than the HD650 - which I also own.

 

All it takes to drive the HD800 is an amp that can swing enough voltage - it doesn't need very much current. So pretty much all stationary headphone amps are fair game.

 

The HE-6 I've never owned, or even tried, but from what I gather that one requires A LOT of current - much like speakers. Which is also why it seems that people who favor this headphone drive it from speaker amps.

 

I don't think a 50wpc channel amp would match well with the HD800 - well, some 50wpc amps might but it wouldn't be something to be expected.


Edited by TwoEars - 11/8/12 at 1:32pm
post #5853 of 6600

Someone correct me if I'm wrong on this but wouldn't a speaker amp actually not put that much power into the 300ohm cans? The HE6 works because it's low impedance.

post #5854 of 6600
Quote:
Originally Posted by MorbidToaster View Post

Someone correct me if I'm wrong on this but wouldn't a speaker amp actually not put that much power into the 300ohm cans? The HE6 works because it's low impedance.

 

This is theoretically true... and would also theoretically reduce the benefit of using such a powerful amp in the first place.

post #5855 of 6600

With the HD800, amp quality matters a lot. Most high-end amps have enough power for them. A 50wpc midrange speaker amp won't sound nearly as good as something with less power but better quality, like an ECBA for example.

post #5856 of 6600
Quote:
Originally Posted by MorbidToaster View Post

Someone correct me if I'm wrong on this but wouldn't a speaker amp actually not put that much power into the 300ohm cans? The HE6 works because it's low impedance.

 

This is correct yes.

 

A speaker amp is usually rated at (for example) 50wpc at 8 ohm impedance, and then (if it's a solid amp) 100wpc into 4 ohm.

 

But it wouldn't be anywhere near those 50wpc at 300 ohms.

 

Which is why in the case of the HE-6 it works well because it's low impedance like a speaker and wants a lot of current flowing through it.

 

In the case of the HD800 it doesn't need or want a lot of current but since the headphone is so sensitive the quality of the voltage swings becomes very important.

post #5857 of 6600

I just wanted to be able to see how it sounded with the amp but it is bought with the HE6 as it's pairing. I just wasn't sure if it was safe to use with the HD800 or not. I'm always on the lookout to see if my rig can get better at a reasonable cost. This gives me some opinions on it and I'll just keep the HE6 connected to the amp. I do have a good combination with the HD800 but the HD800 sounds better on the same rig than the HD800.

post #5858 of 6600
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoEars View Post

 

In my experience I find the HD800 easier to drive than the HD650 - which I also own.

 

All it takes to drive the HD800 is an amp that can swing enough voltage - it doesn't need very much current. So pretty much all stationary headphone amps are fair game.

 

The HE-6 I've never owned, or even tried, but from what I gather that one requires A LOT of current - much like speakers. Which is also why it seems that people who favor this headphone drive it from speaker amps.

 

I don't think a 50wpc channel amp would match well with the HD800 - well, some 50wpc amps might but it wouldn't be something to be expected.

 

HD800 is both lower impedance and higher sensitivity than HD650, so it's significantly easier to drive (50ohm difference....so basically there's an entire HE-6 difference in impedance between the two, with greater sensitivity than either.)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MorbidToaster View Post

Someone correct me if I'm wrong on this but wouldn't a speaker amp actually not put that much power into the 300ohm cans? The HE6 works because it's low impedance.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shahrose View Post

With the HD800, amp quality matters a lot. Most high-end amps have enough power for them. A 50wpc midrange speaker amp won't sound nearly as good as something with less power but better quality, like an ECBA for example.

 

I think there's a bit of a myth around the HE-6 that it requires big power but doesn't care about quality so much, while HD800 cares about quality but not power very much.   HD800 may be the king of absolute detail this side of stats, but HE-6 is very close in terms of its resolution and detail.  HE-6 isn't much less dependent on quality of amplification than HD800 is.  It needs the power in addition to the quality.  So in that sense HD800 is the more forgiving of amps, though it just so happens that scales of economies make good quality high power speaker amps cheaper than a lot of high quality headphone dedicated amps.   HE-6 may handle lesser quality amps with a lot of power more cleanly than HD800 handles a lesser quality of amp, but it rewards high quality amps just as well. 

 

And on the flip side of the myth I was impressed with just how well HD800 handled lesser quality amps.  But the reward for high quality is no lesser with the HE-6 despite the huge power demands.  Therefore an amp that is good enough in performance to extract the best of the HE-6 is also of excellent performance to extract the best of HD800, provided one can tame the power output and make it suitably save.  300ohm goes a long way to doing that, though I'd still feel safer with even more extra resistance than the HE-Adapter provides due to the high sensitivity of HD800. The ideal, I suppose would be a preamp that was chosen for HE-6 that also has a direct headphone output tapped off the main amp with appropriate resistance added.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rawrster View Post

I just wanted to be able to see how it sounded with the amp but it is bought with the HE6 as it's pairing. I just wasn't sure if it was safe to use with the HD800 or not. I'm always on the lookout to see if my rig can get better at a reasonable cost. This gives me some opinions on it and I'll just keep the HE6 connected to the amp. I do have a good combination with the HD800 but the HD800 sounds better on the same rig than the HD800.

 

I'd love to try my 7025 with HD800.  I suspect it would be a superb sounding combination.  I'm just too nervous to do it, even though the numbers show it should be doable.  That eliminates the expected results...it's the unanticpated ones that worry me biggrin.gif

 

FWIW, Sphinx ran the HD800 off the FW clone....but that was only a 10wpc amp.  50wpc is a bit more of an issue depending on the gain factor, and my 140wpc amp would be downright scary...though it's very low gain and thus could in some ways be safer than a very high gain 50wpc amp like my PM6004.

post #5859 of 6600
Quote:
Originally Posted by IEMCrazy View Post

  HE-6 isn't much less dependent on quality of amplification than HD800 is.  It needs the power in addition to the quality.  

 

 

Thank you. I can't tell you how many time's I've heard the HE-6 sounding craptastic on HIGH-POWERED amps (speaker or otherwise) than lower powered (but still of sufficient power) higher quality amps. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by IEMCrazy View Post

And on the flip side of the myth I was impressed with just how well HD800 handled lesser quality amps.

 

Higher quality stuff helps in regards to the HD800 reaching its full potential, but the HD800 needs amps with certain sonic characteristics. The thought of a Benchmark DAC1 + HeadRoom Desktop amp is scary.

post #5860 of 6600

/OT/ Thank you. Sometimes I feel almost alone having the same thoughs among overkill power focused HE-6 owners. The preamplifer part of the puzzle makes a difference - and more than browsing HE-6 threads indicates. /OT/

Quote:
Originally Posted by purrin View Post

Thank you. I can't tell you how many time's I've heard the HE-6 sounding craptastic on HIGH-POWERED amps (speaker or otherwise) than lower powered (but still of sufficient power) higher quality amps. 


Edited by Loevhagen - 11/9/12 at 9:28am
post #5861 of 6600

Completely agree on the OT HE-6 talk. Power =/= Quality. 

post #5862 of 6600

Sorry to be somewhat off topic here, but is there anyone in the Metro-Detroit area with HD800s that wouldn't mind if I dropped by to listen to theirs? I am pretty close to jumping on a new pair, but I want to see if there is anything about their sound signature that might be a major turn off and cause me to not be as excited to own them as I am excited to think about owning them. smily_headphones1.gif

post #5863 of 6600
Quote:
Originally Posted by IEMCrazy View Post

 


I think there's a bit of a myth around the HE-6 that it requires big power but doesn't care about quality so much, while HD800 cares about quality but not power very much.   HD800 may be the king of absolute detail this side of stats, but HE-6 is very close in terms of its resolution and detail.  HE-6 isn't much less dependent on quality of amplification than HD800 is.  It needs the power in addition to the quality.  So in that sense HD800 is the more forgiving of amps, though it just so happens that scales of economies make good quality high power speaker amps cheaper than a lot of high quality headphone dedicated amps.   HE-6 may handle lesser quality amps with a lot of power more cleanly than HD800 handles a lesser quality of amp, but it rewards high quality amps just as well. 

 

And on the flip side of the myth I was impressed with just how well HD800 handled lesser quality amps.  But the reward for high quality is no lesser with the HE-6 despite the huge power demands.  Therefore an amp that is good enough in performance to extract the best of the HE-6 is also of excellent performance to extract the best of HD800, provided one can tame the power output and make it suitably save.  300ohm goes a long way to doing that, though I'd still feel safer with even more extra resistance than the HE-Adapter provides due to the high sensitivity of HD800. The ideal, I suppose would be a preamp that was chosen for HE-6 that also has a direct headphone output tapped off the main amp with appropriate resistance added.

 

 

Preaching to the choir. I've been advocating for quality from day one. That being said, IME, the HD800 is still more sensitive to quality amping and source signal than the HE6. I've had both since close to their release now, and multiples of.

post #5864 of 6600
Quote:
Originally Posted by purrin View Post

The thought of a Benchmark DAC1 + HeadRoom Desktop amp is scary.

 

Too true.  At CanJam LA a couple years back, my impression was that the HeadRoom amps were probably the worst pairing I heard all day with the HD800's.  (Admittedly, I stayed away from, and did not try them with, cheaper solid state options.)

post #5865 of 6600
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg121986 View Post

Sorry to be somewhat off topic here, but is there anyone in the Metro-Detroit area with HD800s that wouldn't mind if I dropped by to listen to theirs? I am pretty close to jumping on a new pair, but I want to see if there is anything about their sound signature that might be a major turn off and cause me to not be as excited to own them as I am excited to think about owning them. smily_headphones1.gif

 

Just ding-dong Jude's house. evil_smiley.gif


Edited by purrin - 11/9/12 at 10:38am
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