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Sennheiser HD800 Appreciation Thread - Page 426  

post #6376 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamescodway View Post


In that case, it would seem the HD800 may well not be the can for you...

X2

post #6377 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamescodway View Post


In that case, it would seem the HD800 may well not be the can for you...

 

I have great experience in high end hi-fi and have heard lots of speaker systems, headphones, amps etc, including many STAX and the SR-009. The difference between the headphones have always been clearly audible and I can even swear I've heard a difference between USB cables. But I just can't hear any difference between my own sources. I have, of course, heard differences between sources and amps before (in stores when switching, the difference between my prior Galaxy Nexus and iPhone 4) but my belief is that both the iPad and the M1 + dac all measure very flat with very low distortion, to a degree any difference one might hear could just be the mind playing tricks. I don't want to believe so but I can't deny what I hear. 

 

I have wondered if there is something wrong with my chain, like some power-related issue. I've tried getting my outlets grounded (ungrounded outlets cause problems with the M1) but without result. There might very well be something bottlenecking the audio, but I'm afraid I doubt it. 


Anyway, my hearing is not the issue :) 

I appreciate the HD 800 for what it does, dynamics and transients are very snappy and the sound is the most open and airy I've heard through headphones. But through time, I've come to realize their sound sig may not be what I truly like. So you're right about them not being the cans for me, in a way. I hope to try tubes, if that doesn't happen then I'll probably go with an LCD-2 or something instead. 


Edited by Lan647 - 1/27/13 at 2:48pm
post #6378 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lan647 View Post

 

I have great experience in high end hi-fi and have heard lots of speaker systems, headphones, amps etc, including many STAX and the SR-009. The difference between the headphones have always been clearly audible and I can even swear I've heard a difference between USB cables. But I just can't hear any difference between my own sources. I have, of course, heard differences between sources and amps before (in stores when switching, the difference between my prior Galaxy Nexus and iPhone 4) but my belief is that both the iPad and the M1 + dac all measure very flat with very low distortion, to a degree any difference one might hear could just be the mind playing tricks. I don't want to believe so but I can't deny what I hear. 

 

I have wondered if there is something wrong with my chain, like some power-related issue. I've tried getting my outlets grounded (ungrounded outlets cause problems with the M1) but without result. There might very well be something bottlenecking the audio, but I'm afraid I doubt it. 


Anyway, my hearing is not the issue :) 

I appreciate the HD 800 for what it does, dynamics and transients are very snappy and the sound is the most open and airy I've heard through headphones. But through time, I've come to realize their sound sig may not be what I truly like. So you're right about them not being the cans for me, in a way. I hope to try tubes, if that doesn't happen then I'll probably go with an LCD-2 or something instead. 

 

^

post #6379 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maxvla View Post


I had a WA6 for a while with my HD800. Got a new amp and it was nearly a new headphone. WA6 doesn't do it justice.

 

 

 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Olias of Sunhillow View Post


Of the three amps recently discussed, I would rank them with the HD800 as follows: 1. WA2. 2. V200. 3. WA6SE.

Of course, it kind of depends on what your objective is. I like tube amps that take just a bit of the shimmer off the top of the Senns. You may want the opposite. The WA2 is highly dependent on tube choice, meaning you can dial it in as you want. It's also excellent with some low-impedance cans, though it with all (great with Grados, not so much with Denons).

 

 

 

 

+1

 

the HD 800 pairs very well with the WA2 (the WA6-SE is a great choice too, and should be MUCH better than the WA6). the highs are silky smooth, a slightly warmer midrange (though still quite neutral and hd-800ish), and deep bass. 


Edited by Dubstep Girl - 1/27/13 at 7:19pm
post #6380 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by LifeAspect View Post

One quick question though, how well does the sound improve with a custom cable on the HD800? Really worth that much money?

cables... controversial subject...

Seeing that the HD800's cable was built pretty well (excluding the inner wire), wouldn't be too sure. The 36 gauge is rather thin, but not sure if that'd affect the sound.

Then there's our good old Placebo Effect. 

 

Cables don't change the sound night and day, but a different pair of headphones will. <- just something to think about.

Only time I'd get a new cable is when there's a god awful cable like the SA5000's. 

Some people recable w/ cables $1k+... and you can get another pair with that money. 

Even the ones that run for 500, can save your money towards source/amp.

 

Just things to think about :p

post #6381 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shahrose View Post

 

^

 

I could try getting my hands on a different DAC to check if my DAC is the issue? If not, then it must be something power related which I can't do anything about. I could try phase switching and power conditioners but that's it.

Any tips?  


Edited by Lan647 - 1/28/13 at 1:21am
post #6382 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lan647 View Post

 

I could try getting my hands on a different DAC to check if my DAC is the issue? If not, then it must be something power related which I can't do anything about. I could try phase switching and power conditioners but that's it.

Any tips?  


I have a Stello DA100 FS in Sweden. Pairs extremely well with HD800 (been using it through a Zana Deux SE). Let me know if you're interested. Might sell it since I have a NAD M51 incoming this week.

 

/V

post #6383 of 6593

Does anyone have experience with 45 tubes?  I aks because Eddie Current is coming out with a new tube amp.  The EC 445.  It takes 4 45 tubes.  How does these tube do with the HD800s in comparison to the 2A3 tubs?

post #6384 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lan647 View Post

 

I could try getting my hands on a different DAC to check if my DAC is the issue? If not, then it must be something power related which I can't do anything about. I could try phase switching and power conditioners but that's it.

Any tips?  

 

I think it's source-related mainly. I've found power conditioning to provide little to no gains for an unreasonably high cost if your local area is new and power is clean to begin with. It's a different matter if you live in an old building or are running multiple appliances or major electronics in the same room.

 

Source and amp is where I'd focus my energy. If you can hear cable differences, then your hearing's not the issue. If you're using a computer, the transport (USB to SPDIF converter) is just as important as the DAC, unless you buy one of the more expensive USB DACs which have decent built-in conversion. For the amp, that really depends on your preferences. But, if I were you, I'd find myself an M^3 or GS-1/Dynalo if you want high-end value. With a larger budget, you could choose from a number of amps that would sound good with the 800s.

post #6385 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shahrose View Post

 

I think it's source-related mainly. I've found power conditioning to provide little to no gains for an unreasonably high cost if your local area is new and power is clean to begin with. It's a different matter if you live in an old building or are running multiple appliances or major electronics in the same room.

 

Source and amp is where I'd focus my energy. If you can hear cable differences, then your hearing's not the issue. If you're using a computer, the transport (USB to SPDIF converter) is just as important as the DAC, unless you buy one of the more expensive USB DACs which have decent built-in conversion. For the amp, that really depends on your preferences. But, if I were you, I'd find myself an M^3 or GS-1/Dynalo if you want high-end value. With a larger budget, you could choose from a number of amps that would sound good with the 800s.

 

I live in a fairly old building with un-grounded outlets and I recently got the two in this room grounded so that the M1 would stop "humming". But strangely, the humming is now inaudible with the HD 800 but still audible with my Momentums. (When you put your hand on the amp, the noise stops). I also have quite a few components sharing outlets; the amp, the dac, the iMac, a hard-drive, a router and modem and a few lamps. These are connected using standard extension outlets. 

My DAC is a USB variant, so the conversion is internal. The DAC was built for me by a friend who is very experienced in both audio and electronics and own about a dozen STAX headphones, so I take it this guy knows his deal.

post #6386 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lan647 View Post

 

I live in a fairly old building with un-grounded outlets and I recently got the two in this room grounded so that the M1 would stop "humming". But strangely, the humming is now inaudible with the HD 800 but still audible with my Momentums. (When you put your hand on the amp, the noise stops). I also have quite a few components sharing outlets; the amp, the dac, the iMac, a hard-drive, a router and modem and a few lamps. These are connected using standard extension outlets. 

My DAC is a USB variant, so the conversion is internal. The DAC was built for me by a friend who is very experienced in both audio and electronics and own about a dozen STAX headphones, so I take it this guy knows his deal.


You will have to invest in a power conditioning component to completely eliminate the mains hum, it will also greatly enhance the performance of your hardware.

post #6387 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by dukeskd View Post


You will have to invest in a power conditioning component to completely eliminate the mains hum, it will also greatly enhance the performance of your hardware.

 

But I've heard this can vary a lot, sometimes a power conditioner improves the sound and sometimes makes it worse?

post #6388 of 6593

I'd focus on the DAC and transport from what you've described. Digital tech is moving ahead at a furious pace. Next would be the amp, and then power issues.

 

From what you've posted, I don't think it warrants any power conditioning. Just sounds like some ground loop issues. That money would give you greater gains being invested in a source/amp.

post #6389 of 6593
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shahrose View Post

I'd focus on the DAC and transport from what you've described. Digital tech is moving ahead at a furious pace. Next would be the amp, and then power issues.

 

From what you've posted, I don't think it warrants any power conditioning. Just sounds like some ground loop issues. That money would give you greater gains being invested in a source/amp.


I have to disagree, if the power supply quality is bad and it fluctuates then the performance of the hardware will be sub par. This is from personal experience in many locations that I lived in, including studios, etc. A 100$ surge preventer/power conditioner will in most cases solve any hum issues and filter out hums. More expensive conditioners will not only filter but try to adjust a stable output to hardware.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lan647 View Post

 

But I've heard this can vary a lot, sometimes a power conditioner improves the sound and sometimes makes it worse?

 

It depends on what conditioner you have. Do you use a surge protector at the moment?

post #6390 of 6593
Quote:
Does anyone have experience with 45 tubes?  I aks because Eddie Current is coming out with a new tube amp.  The EC 445.  It takes 4 45 tubes.  How does these tube do with the HD800s in comparison to the 2A3 tubs?

 

I use a 45-based amp for speakers.  It takes 2A3s as well but I prefer the sound of the 45 -- especially the globes.  45s are overall more magical than the 2A3s, a tad less coltish, with a more balanced, ethereal mid-range and deeper, more articulated bass.  The 45 has a unique ability to shine a light around the music.  I am very interested in this new EC amp.  Do you know if it's just 4 45s, meaning a 45 driving a 45 for each channel? That would make it the holy grail of headphone amps in my book -- all DHT all the time...

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