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Hifiman HE-4 Impressions Thread - Page 106

post #1576 of 3917
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thujone View Post
 

I've heard the EF5 is a very tubey sounding amp. Very warm and musical. I'm sure that this would sound great with the HE-4!


The EF-5 is fantastic, I would not say it was "tubey" , but it does have a unique sound signature that pairs well with certain HPs. It is an often overlooked amp.  @mrscotchguy change the stock OPA and it is even better. 

 

post #1577 of 3917
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fearless1 View Post


The EF-5 is fantastic, I would not say it was "tubey" , but it does have a unique sound signature that pairs well with certain HPs. It is an often overlooked amp.  @mrscotchguy
 change the stock OPA and it is even better. 



I have to agree, it's not all that tube-y sounding since it's a hybrid design (tube input and opa out). But it's signature is super warm, luscious, and just plan fun.

As for the OBG upgrade, I'm not even sure where to start, but I've read most people ended up fragging their opa275 while removing it the first time.

Any suggestions on the process or an upgrade? I'd prefer a discrete option, but man are they expensive...
post #1578 of 3917
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrscotchguy View Post



Any suggestions on the process or an upgrade? I'd prefer a discrete option, but man are they expensive...

The stock is glued in(just a dab but it is still glued), even pressure with a good set of tweezers did the trick for me.

 

The good old 627 is a more musical sound, the AD825x2 is amazing in it.(the one pictured).

 

As far as tube rolling(tried a bunch), I actually really enjoy the Full Music (if it still has them) in it with the OPA swap.

post #1579 of 3917
Mine is the older version that came with the RCA tube. I will keep my eyes open for an AD chip. As for the tube, when I do upgrade it, I think I will pick up a Psvane 12au7 and skip the whole tube rolling fetish.

Thanks for the advise. So far, my only complaint is the mechanical vibrations I get. Right now it's sitting on some foam, but I will pick up some sorbathane feet to fix that minor issue.

As musical as it is... I cannot even imagine how much more one of Audio-GDs opas could get...
post #1580 of 3917
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrscotchguy View Post

Mine is the older version that came with the RCA tube. I will keep my eyes open for an AD chip. As for the tube, when I do upgrade it, I think I will pick up a Psvane 12au7 and skip the whole tube rolling fetish.

Thanks for the advise. So far, my only complaint is the mechanical vibrations I get. Right now it's sitting on some foam, but I will pick up some sorbathane feet to fix that minor issue.

As musical as it is... I cannot even imagine how much more one of Audio-GDs opas could get...


Hmm,  good idea with the Audio GD, never thought of that.  The Full Music gold pin is really good in it, from Fang himself.

 

I agree the build is very plastic and light, but other then that it is an underrated performer that I will always keep around.

post #1581 of 3917
Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundsgoodtome View Post


I have but I'm at the peak of a cold so impressions are off for now. Initially they're stiff and uncomfortable but after 4hrs or so they feel an improvement over hf velour and pleather.

Initial impressions seem to be better bass impact, with a slight boost in the lower frequencies. On first install there seem to be a slight bleed of mid bass to the mids but after awhile that has disappeared. Maybe the pads breaking in and being more conforming?

The presentation is more natural in a sense of depth and soundstage. You can get a sense of this by holding your hp at an angle to your ear with the back of the pad away from your head.

The mids and treble doesn't change with the pads. Just bass and presentation. I wouldn't say it's not worth the $40 in a sense of sound but there's quite a mark up on these pads from a material stand point imo. Maybe wait for hf it'll probably be in the $25 range but that's pure speculation. Fwiw, it took 10 days from date of order to me (West coast).

 

I got my HE-4's back and finally got to try some Denon pads on them. Between them and the velours, I am surprised how close they are. It's weird. HFM pleather seems to tunnel the sound giving a hollow effect while the Denon pleather is much more permeable, almost as much as the velours. This is something I've noticed with my newly acquired D2000's; they don't isolate well at all.

 

Anyway, I found that the Denon pads lack some bass extension compared to velours. This seems to be the biggest difference to my ears other than the overall presentation. That said, I completely agree with your impressions in that the mids and treble stay right where they are and the presentation is improved. However I didn't find the Denon pads to have more bass impact, in fact, quite the opposite. Soooooo subtle though. I had to listen to a very rumbly EDM track in order to pick up on the lack of sub bass and impact. Still, these are definitely a great pad choice. Waaaay comfortable. Sound-wise they remind me a lot of the Alphas. I wonder if the Lawton leather pads are more isolating? If they are real leather, I'd expect to have some significant differences.

post #1582 of 3917
You could be right on bass extension, I was watching movies when i did my impression while I had the cold (3 movies back to back ftw!). Maybe the movie sfx had that much bass from explosions and whatnot.

I now have in my possession some akg q701. Those are angled velours I might try and if I like it I might get the k712 which are even thicker.
post #1583 of 3917
Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundsgoodtome View Post

You could be right on bass extension, I was watching movies when i did my impression while I had the cold (3 movies back to back ftw!). Maybe the movie sfx had that much bass from explosions and whatnot.

I now have in my possession some akg q701. Those are angled velours I might try and if I like it I might get the k712 which are even thicker.

I can't comment on pad rolling for Hifiman headphones, but I did a good bit of pad rolling in my Grado and T50rp days. And it's amazing how much a wee bit of material can have on the sound...

Though the biggest effect I notice people tend to forget here is the fit. If your pads don't create a perfect seal, it's tough to get consistent results.
Edited by mrscotchguy - 3/2/14 at 5:28pm
post #1584 of 3917

I have seen someone use the Q701 pads on the HE-500, he apparently prefers them to jergs. It is definitely interesting how some pads can drastically change the sound while others don't. I love the velours on the HE-4 but the Alphas and Denons were definitely exceptional alternatives, with subtle sonic changes. Then there are the jerg pads which work great on the HE-400 and HE-500 but I had them on the HE-4 for about 30 seconds before I couldn't take it anymore, lol. I may have to try the Lawton pads just to see. The Denon pads are definitely the best looking and most comfortable IMO.

post #1585 of 3917
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thujone View Post
 

I've heard the EF5 is a very tubey sounding amp. Very warm and musical. I'm sure that this would sound great with the HE-4!

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thujone View Post
 

I have seen someone use the Q701 pads on the HE-500, he apparently prefers them to jergs. It is definitely interesting how some pads can drastically change the sound while others don't. I love the velours on the HE-4 but the Alphas and Denons were definitely exceptional alternatives, with subtle sonic changes. Then there are the jerg pads which work great on the HE-400 and HE-500 but I had them on the HE-4 for about 30 seconds before I couldn't take it anymore, lol. I may have to try the Lawton pads just to see. The Denon pads are definitely the best looking and most comfortable IMO.

ewwwww that's a tough decision 

 

I wonder how the New Hifiman Pads will compare to Denons... my old D2k is being sent to me with it's orignal pads so I've got to deicide if I want the HE 4 with Denon Stocks or the W1000x with Denon stocks 

post #1586 of 3917
I'm pretty curious about the new pads myself. Hopefully they won't be too expensive either. Regular Hifiman pass are a steal compared to most other options out there.

I think the best improvement I've made from a mod was stretching the headphones over my bookshelf speaker for a few days. The clamping force is just too much for me from the factory. Comfort is now, not a problem.
post #1587 of 3917
Hey Thujone, how'd you like the HE4 and Vali pairing? I ask because its getting more and more tempting now that I have a q701 which is suppose to be fantastic out of em.

It would also let me experience the 600mw per channel experience with the HE4 to see if it can really drive them like out of 2w per channel.
Edited by Soundsgoodtome - 3/5/14 at 5:51pm
post #1588 of 3917
Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundsgoodtome View Post

Hey Thujone, how'd you like the HE4 and Vali pairing? I ask because its getting more and more tempting now that I have a q701 which is suppose to be fantastic out of em.

It would also let me experience the 600mw per channel experience with the HE4 to see if it can really drive them like out of 2w per channel.

 

I really enjoyed the match. In fact, I'm about to buy a Vali myself, haha. It's a little warmer and more intimate than the Ember, more musical I suppose. For $120, I think it's a no-brainer.

 

As a side note, I spent quite some time with the Vali and Bottlehead Crack last weekend. My friend has the HD600 and I have the HD580. Since we've both done plenty of listening to the two, and determined that there are no sonic differences, we set up the Vali to one and the Crack to the other (using the AMB Gamma2 as the DAC). We spent at least an hour doing an A/B session and found hardly any differences (if at all) between the two. Granted, I found that the Crack did better with my Bifrost when I first tried it out about a month ago. Still, the Vali provides a versatility that the Crack does not. It pairs great with hard to drive orthos as well as dynamic headphones. Again, I think it's a great choice!

post #1589 of 3917
Your clearly using the wrong tubes in your crack. :-)
post #1590 of 3917
what's the biggest advantage ember has over the vali for the he4 is what I want to know. If you're saying the vali isnt dramatically behind the ember, just for the 4, I need to buy one asap.
Edited by hemipowered007 - 3/5/14 at 6:54pm
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