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HiFiMAN HE-5 amp pairing

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 
Hi,

I'm very interested in the HiFiMAN HE-5 and the HE-5/EF5 combo is quite tempting. However, it would mean higher shipping and customs costs for me in Costa Rica. Plus, I don't like having to worry about tubes, and I already have a solid state Corda Opera amp...

Are people satisfied with the HE-5 on pure solid-state amps like the Corda Opera?

I read through all 78 pages of the HE-5 musings thread but the mind gets hazy after *so much* information.

I decided to start a separate amp thread so we can organize things better.

Thanks
post #2 of 32
I know amps get significantly better than the CKKIII, but the HE-5 still sounds damn good with it.
post #3 of 32
Thread Starter 
Sounds promising. I've been a bit worried after reading many posts that said the HE-5 needs very specific amps to sound good due to the electrical requirements of the orthodynamic drivers. I'm sure the HE-5/EF5 combo is the sure way to go, but I'd rather have the cans sound good with my existing equipment

Quote:
Originally Posted by foaming at the ears View Post
I know amps get significantly better than the CKKIII, but the HE-5 still sounds damn good with it.
post #4 of 32
I have no experience with the amps metioned, but i found out the hard way that HE-5 really needs extraordinary current to drive it.I just sold my one week old EC/SS because it didnt have the juice for the HE-5.You would think 3 watts going into 32 ohms would be enough, but not with these guys.In fact i'm still scratching my head because it doesnt make sense to me.Anyway, just my 2 cents.
post #5 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by sizwej View Post
I have no experience with the amps metioned, but i found out the hard way that HE-5 really needs extraordinary current to drive it.I just sold my one week old EC/SS because it didnt have the juice for the HE-5.You would think 3 watts going into 32 ohms would be enough, but not with these guys.In fact i'm still scratching my head because it doesnt make sense to me.Anyway, just my 2 cents.
What was actually happening to tell you your old amp wasnt powering it well enough?
post #6 of 32
Well i didnt detect any clipping, but i had the thing cranked up to about 3 o'clock just so it could sound decent without distortion.I actually PM'd Nakani (Head-Direct) before i got the HE-5 and asked him if the EC/SS could power it, and he said he didnt think so.He said it could only put out 300mw which wouldnt be enough.The specs for the Ec/ss say it puts out 3 watts so i PM'd him again, and his response was for me to just try the combo and see what happens
post #7 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by sizwej View Post
Well i didnt detect any clipping, but i had the thing cranked up to about 3 o'clock just so it could sound decent without distortion.I actually PM'd Nakani (Head-Direct) before i got the HE-5 and asked him if the EC/SS could power it, and he said he didnt think so.He said it could only put out 300mw which wouldnt be enough.The specs for the Ec/ss say it puts out 3 watts so i PM'd him again, and his response was for me to just try the combo and see what happens
Distortion?? very strange. It takes quite a weak amp for me to get distortion on my orthos.
I do not have an HE-5, but I have orthos which are even harder to drive.

Heres an experiment, plug the HE-5 directly into your PC headphone jack, or a CDP, and tell me if it drives it better than the Eddie current did.
post #8 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kabeer View Post
Distortion?? very strange. It takes quite a weak amp for me to get distortion on my orthos.
I do not have an HE-5, but I have orthos which are even harder to drive.

Heres an experiment, plug the HE-5 directly into your PC headphone jack, or a CDP, and tell me if it drives it better than the Eddie current did.
Well they sound so-so out of my yamaha RX-V2400 at about -20db, i wouldnt say better than the EC/SS though.I'm going to order the recommended EF-5 and see how that goes.
post #9 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by foaming at the ears View Post
I know amps get significantly better than the CKKIII, but the HE-5 still sounds damn good with it.
Could you please check something? Run some sine waves to see how low the bass goes and high the treble goes on the HE-5 powered off your CKKIII.
Some people have found a lack of frequency extension from underamping, so I'm wondering how well the CKKIII does in this regard.
post #10 of 32
Thread Starter 
Is Fang's Head-Fi username Nankai? I sent him a PM with the Corda Opera specs to ask if it will drive the HE-5 properly. However, I then noticed that Nankai represents Head-Direct, not HiFiMAN.

I'm thinking they're the same person, but could someone let me know if I just embarrassed myself?
post #11 of 32
^^ i think they are, or rather i hope they are.. otherwise who have i been communicating with via PM
post #12 of 32
I tried the HE5 w/ a few amps. Funnily it sounds very nice out of the Graham Slee Solo SRGII but not our of the Musical Fidelity X-Can V2. I wrote funnily because the X-Can V2 puts out a full watt. Oh well, at least I have the EF5!
post #13 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrarroyo View Post
I tried the HE5 w/ a few amps. Funnily it sounds very nice out of the Graham Slee Solo SRGII but not our of the Musical Fidelity X-Can V2. I wrote funnily because the X-Can V2 puts out a full watt. Oh well, at least I have the EF5!
Do you mean you didn't like the synergy between the X-can and HE-5, or that the X-can couldnt power the HE-5?
post #14 of 32
Thread Starter 
I'd love to hear more about ow the HE-5 pairs with solid state amps.
post #15 of 32
I compared the EF5 directly with the Audio-GD Phoenix powering the HE-5's. The Phoenix slightly out-classed the EF5 on all counts. The EF5 seemed somewhat granier, but required less volume. However, the Phoenix can still provide plenty of volume. My guess is that the EF5 has more gain which probably accounts for the graininess.
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