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HifiMAN HE-6 Planar Magnetic Headphone - Page 488

post #7306 of 14883
Quote:
Originally Posted by zibra View Post

Unless its DIY and you know what you are doing atsmile.gif

 

Well, there's that, too.... bigsmile_face.gif 

 

But Just because you build something that you call a "headphone amp" and put only headphone outputs on it and optimize it for HE-6, doesn't mean that the power supplies, transformer, out output circuits aren't going to end up being the same thing you'd use for a low powered speaker amp.  I mean I could rip out the binding posts and install a 4-pin XLR on an F1 and call it a "dedicated headphone amp", but it doesn't mean it's not a speaker amp at heart.  wink.gif

 

The biggest difference between an HP amp and a speaker amp is really the ability to drive low impedance with ease,and to deliver tremendous amounts of continuous current with massive peak swings.  Most of that difference comes squarely down to the power supplies and transformer.  So any "headphone" amp could be built with the same capacity power handling as any speaker amp.  It's just that for any headphones other than K1k, HE-6, HE-5LE, and HE-4, such huge weight and size would be pointless because it would not be utilized.

 

Ultimately the question is "what is a headphone amp and how is it different from a speaker amp?"  Before the headamp craze (thanks, Tyll! very_evil_smiley.gif ) a "headphone amp" was just a speaker amp with some resistors connected to a TRS jack.  There was no difference, one just added resistance to the amp outputs.

 

Then the headphone amp craze started with small compact amps for headphones that didn't weigh 20lbs and measure 19x17x5".  Since then we now have this split of "headphone amps versus speaker amps."  But what's ultimately the difference?  The headphone amp doesn't have the high current capability of the speaker amp, meaning it doesn't have massive power supplies and transformers, and yes smaller caps and the like throughout. And yes, it's more optimized for high impedance loads. 

 

But basically the "beauty" of the headphone amp is that it can be made small, light, and relatively cool running, because headphones don't need the kind of current and swings speakers need, nor the low impedance that facilitates that.  And, in theory the money saved on materials that will go unused can be put into improving the performance/materials that will be used for the application, though that theory rarely holds true, as headphone amps are a small niche, while speaker amps can run fairly mass-market, so the scale of economies tilts heavily in favor of speaker amps (until you get to really high end boutique stuff where the cost begins favoring headphone amps again.)

 

But then enters HE-6, HE-5LE, HE-4, and K1k.  Not as low impedance as speakers but darn close considering the planars are linear, while dynamic cone speakers are rarely close to linear, so the average of 50ohm is probably not far off at all, and at that impedance, similar current and swing requirements to speakers.  Meaning the idea of "downsizing" the amp has less meaning because more of those larger power handling components are utilized as they are for speakers.

 

So what we're left with is a lot of headphone amps that simply don't have the muscle in terms of sustained current delivery and peak handling left over, a handful of headphone amps that do have 90% of the needed muscle and excellent performance, a handful of speaker amps that lack in performace but deliver 100% of the muscle, a half dozen or less headphone amps that deliver both, and a large variety of speaker amps that deliver both.

 

You can DIY whatever you want, but if it delivers that kind of current and reserve power from a large enough power supply, is it really a headphone amp at all?  if you stick binding posts on it can you power some passive monitors?  Yes.


Edited by IEMCrazy - 11/14/12 at 8:36am
post #7307 of 14883

So....how's that Mjolnir working out?

post #7308 of 14883
Quote:
Originally Posted by sphinxvc View Post

So....how's that Mjolnir working out?

 

tongue_smile.gif   So far I haven't even plugged HE-6 into it...all my Mjolnir time has been spent with HD800 thus far (and I've still managed to spend most of my head-time with HE-6 on the normal setup.) 

 

Mjolnir with HD800 is excellent.   They do have excellent synergy, though I didn't doubt it since Purrin and I seem to hear things similarly and he's very favorable in opinion of the combo.  But so far I have it connected at the second listening "station" using the Bifrost and Behringer alternately as DAC to compare how each performs and/or if using the balanced inputs makes a huge impact versus unbal on the MJ.  Purrin was interested in the results of that test since he's using a modded Behringer as one of his main DACs, so it's interesting to compare the unmodded SRC versus the Bifrost.  So far the results with MJ are impressive....even unmodded the SRC may be the better DAC of the two at half the price, if running balanced.  The unbalanced servo-controlled outputs from the XLR jacks on the Behringer would be a whole different mess.  Doesn't hold a candle to my WDS-1 though wink.gif

 

I still have to string the long XLRs around the room from the y-split to bring my WDS to the MJ.  I can't do a fair HE-6 comparison until I do that.  That involves some furniture maneuvers... blink.gif

post #7309 of 14883

Cool.  Post those HE-6 thoughts too when you get a chance.  

post #7310 of 14883
Quote:
Originally Posted by sphinxvc View Post

Cool.  Post those HE-6 thoughts too when you get a chance.  

 

I definitely will!

post #7311 of 14883
Quote:
Originally Posted by sphinxvc View Post

Cool.  Post those HE-6 thoughts too when you get a chance.  

 

 

sphinxvc,

 

You asked the "Longwindeus Supremus" to post his thoughts???  Get ready for a book..biggrin.gif

post #7312 of 14883

L3000.gif

post #7313 of 14883
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post

 

 

sphinxvc,

 

You asked the "Longwindeus Supremus" to post his thoughts???  Get ready for a book..biggrin.gif


very_evil_smiley.gif

post #7314 of 14883
popcorn.gif

Carry on......
post #7315 of 14883

For everyone that is using a speaker amp I have a few questions.

 

First, I finally got my order from Moon Audio (seemed like forever but it really only took 5 days).  I built a black dragon balanced cable tonight and a speaker tap. I then hooked it up to my Bryston BHA-1 which is what I have been using and it sounds great (somewhat better than the stock cable which I have been using single ended due to the length...not sure whether the improvement is due to the Black Dragon wire or running it balanced).

 

I then made the speaker tap using some 16 gauge Monoprice speaker wire and hooked it up to my Wyred4Sound STI-500 which I usually use to power my speakers.  Well, it also sounds great, maybe even better than the Bryston.  But WOW I have to crank it up and this is a 550 watt amp into 4 Ohms (250 into 8 Ohms).

 

I normally listen to my Revel Studio II's at a volume of between 15 and 25 (out of 60).  These are not especially efficient speakers (88.7 db/watt at 6 Ohms).  Well, to get to a nice volume on the HE-6 I have to go up to about 20.

 

So the HE-6 pretty much makes the same volume listening experience as my Revel Speakers at the same amp level.

 

So the question is, what volume are you guys using on your speaker amps/ integrated amps, have you listened to speakers on the same amps, and how do the volumes compare?

 

Anyway, I may be re-purposing this amp for the HE-6 and make some NCore monoblocks for my speakers.


Edited by Senn-Fi - 11/14/12 at 10:25pm
post #7316 of 14883
Quote:
Originally Posted by Senn-Fi View Post

For everyone that is using a speaker amp I have a few questions.

 

First, I finally got my order from Moon Audio (seemed like forever but it really only took 5 days).  I built a black dragon balanced cable tonight and a speaker tap. I then hooked it up to my Bryston BHA-1 which is what I have been using and it sounds great (somewhat better than the stock cable which I have been using single ended due to the length...not sure whether the improvement is due to the Black Dragon wire or running it balanced).

 

I then made the speaker tap using some 16 gauge Monoprice speaker wire and hooked it up to my Wyred4Sound STI-500 which I usually use to power my speakers.  Well, it also sounds great, maybe even better than the Bryston.  But WOW I have to crank it up and this is a 550 watt amp into 4 Ohms (250 into 8 Ohms).

 

I normally listen to my Revel Studio II's at a volume of between 15 and 25 (out of 60).  These are not especially efficient speakers (88.7 db/watt at 6 Ohms).  Well, to get to a nice volume on the HE-6 I have to go up to about 20.

 

So the HE-6 pretty much makes the same volume listening experience as my Revel Speakers at the same amp level.

 

So the question is, what volume are you guys using on your speaker amps/ integrated amps, have you listened to speakers on the same amps, and how do the volumes compare?

 

Anyway, I may be re-purposing this amp for the HE-6 and make some NCore monoblocks for my speakers.

 

That's the part few people talk about with amplifiers.  The volume level you set is more or less not related at all to the amount of output power.  It's a factor of the output voltage from the preamp (or from the source to the preamp), the input sensitivity of the amplifier, and the gain factor of the amplifier.   You could build a million watt amplifier that barely gets enough volume on HE-6 if it's theoretically non-existent gain from a quiet source and low sensitivity inputs.

 

Being a 250W @8k amp indicates it is capable of delivering 250W RMS current into 8k if the input voltage peaks the input sensitivity.   But will deliver far less than that if it does not, (and delivering less than that should be the job of the preamp, or boosting so it does deliver that if desired. biggrin.gif )   The higher end the amp, usually the lower gain factor, which means lower noise, but also tends to be more in need of a good preamp for driving hard to drive loads (or a good preamp section in an integrated setup).   It's purely coincidence that the output power level needed to drive your listening volume at 8ohm on the Revels happens to match the power level needed to match your listening volume at 50ohm on the HE-6 though cool.gif

 

That's a pretty powerful amp though to have such a low gain.  I'm guessing it's just a really really good amp....or is it a Class-D amp? D tends to have more difficulty with higher impedance which might be why you're using more available power.

post #7317 of 14883

I've been posting about this in other threads and sorry for repeating myself, but I'm so astounded with the HE500s I got  (both with the stock cable and even more so with a Moon Silver Dragon cable)

that I just wanted to give my recommendation here to anyone considering an HE6 + a speaker amp.

Try the HE500 ($700 !) with a headphone amp first if you have a good headphone amp. They are awesome with solid state or tubes. Check out the recent HE500 thread posts for more impressions.

post #7318 of 14883
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgs9200m View Post

I've been posting about this in other threads and sorry for repeating myself, but I'm so astounded with the HE500s I got  (both with the stock cable and even more so with a Moon Silver Dragon cable)

that I just wanted to give my recommendation here to anyone considering an HE6 + a speaker amp.

Try the HE500 ($700 !) with a headphone amp first if you have a good headphone amp. They are awesome with solid state or tubes. Check out the recent HE500 thread posts for more impressions.

really interesting.

if the marriage of my beta and my he-6 will not be good, i will try the he-500.

thank you

post #7319 of 14883
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgs9200m View Post

I've been posting about this in other threads and sorry for repeating myself, but I'm so astounded with the HE500s I got  (both with the stock cable and even more so with a Moon Silver Dragon cable)
that I just wanted to give my recommendation here to anyone considering an HE6 + a speaker amp.
Try the HE500 ($700 !) with a headphone amp first if you have a good headphone amp. They are awesome with solid state or tubes. Check out the recent HE500 thread posts for more impressions.
I had the he500's before and they were fantastic for their price. Now I have the HE6 and its a significant step up imo. It's probably my favorite/ most versatile pair of headphones
post #7320 of 14883
Quote:
Originally Posted by dleblanc343 View Post


I had the he500's before and they were fantastic for their price. Now I have the HE6 and its a significant step up imo. It's probably my favorite/ most versatile pair of headphones

 

+1 I agree with this 100%  However, I still have my HE-500s and the HE-5LEsbiggrin.gif

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