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Hifiman HE-4 Impressions Thread - Page 148

post #2206 of 3923
Quote:
Originally Posted by .Sup View Post


That should be interesting. How much do they cost?

39 dollars on Amazon.

post #2207 of 3923

Question,

What's the best way (Without EQ) to calm the sibilance on the HE-4 down?

It's nowhere near as bad as it was with my Grados, and I love every other part of the sound signature, but some albums like "What's the Story (Morning Glory)" and "Incesticide" are near unlistenable.

post #2208 of 3923
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3l3tric View Post
 

Question,

What's the best way (Without EQ) to calm the sibilance on the HE-4 down?

It's nowhere near as bad as it was with my Grados, and I love every other part of the sound signature, but some albums like "What's the Story (Morning Glory)" and "Incesticide" are near unlistenable.

TUBES or a warm dac 

post #2209 of 3923
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3l3tric View Post
 

Question,

What's the best way (Without EQ) to calm the sibilance on the HE-4 down?

It's nowhere near as bad as it was with my Grados, and I love every other part of the sound signature, but some albums like "What's the Story (Morning Glory)" and "Incesticide" are near unlistenable.


Best way it seems without dropping too much coin would be to get 2mm felt circle and place it on the dust cover inside the pads (check one or two pages back to see). You can remove and replace on the go if you want the treble energy back or a behaved sound.

I do have to say that experiencing the HE4 with a warm DAC (like dual Wolfson equipped Audio-GDs or similar) is also a great way to even the HE4 out or tilt it to some warmth. Only problem with a warm DAC is making sure you don't lose treble detail. I can say that the NFB12 and it's balanced bigger brother NFB-10SE sound fantastic with the HE4, the latter being better on all fronts.


Edited by Soundsgoodtome - 5/31/14 at 5:15pm
post #2210 of 3923

I need to listen to the HE-4 again tomorrow... But it really seems to be a significantly different headphone than the stock one is.

 

Effortlessly open, with a wider soundstage and significantly better imaging. Tonal balance is improved in a sense that the headphone sounds more diverse depending on what I am listening to - because of the fuller mids and less airy, dominant and unforgiving treble. Bass is still absolutely tight and linear, with very solid subbass - among the best I've heard. And yeah, the headphone is still very fast, able to handle every song/genre I throw at them.

 

They, right now as I listen to them, somewhat remind me of some Stax models I've heard so far, differing only in terms of treble cleanness (electrostats are for sure cleaner). Not talking about tonality, rather about timbre - the way they sound in general, frequency response aside.

 

Soundstage is not as tall and deep as with HD800... And as I said, there is some increased level of distortion in lower treble somewhere. But I just love the HE-4... So light-weight and comfortable, so elegant in its all-black coat. I could quite easily purchase a more expensive headphone... But I don't want to, there is no need to do so. Yes, these are THAT good.


Edited by Ron12 - 5/31/14 at 5:25pm
post #2211 of 3923
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mshenay View Post
 

TUBES or a warm dac 

I'm already using a Hybrid amp with a 12AX7 preamp tube and an AMB Gamma1, which I've heard is pretty warm.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundsgoodtome View Post
 


Best way it seems without dropping too much coin would be to get 2mm felt circle and place it on the dust cover inside the pads (check one or two pages back to see). You can remove and replace on the go if you want the treble energy back or a behaved sound.

I do have to say that experiencing the HE4 with a warm DAC (like dual Wolfson equipped Audio-GDs or similar) is also a great way to even the HE4 out or tilt it to some warmth. Only problem with a warm DAC is making sure you don't lose treble detail. I can say that the NFB12 and it's balanced bigger brother NFB-10SE sound fantastic with the HE4, the latter being better on all fronts.

You mean the foam circles from inside the Beyers, right?

I'll see what I can do.

I'm looking to build a Gamma2 upgrade board for my Gamma1, which uses 1 of the same DAC that's in the NFB12, but unfortunately, some essential parts are going to be on backorder for a while (One of them being the DAC itself...)

post #2212 of 3923
Well, if everyone is getting goofy with the earpad thing... As I was packing up today, I had come across my ear zonks from my Grado pad-rolling glory days. Low any behold, for giggles, I tossed em in between the factory HE-4 pad and my ear...

If you are looking for a warm sounds... It basically created what the HE-500 sounds like to me (minus the mud) biggrin.gif
post #2213 of 3923
What are ear zonks?
post #2214 of 3923
post #2215 of 3923

I'm assuming you just held those in place?
post #2216 of 3923
Also, I've been asking about those shure alcantra pads for a while, glad well get to hear some impressions of them on the 4
post #2217 of 3923
The HE-4 definitely sounded more magical with the Lyr than the SA-31, though it did sound more technically accurate and cleaner withthe latter. The HE-4 just had a rawness that I really liked with the Lyr, especially in the bass. The HE-4 sounded almost reference with the SA-31, but not as dynamic.

I know if I were looking to amp the HE-4, the Lyr 2 would be on the top of my list. People can say all they want about how the HE-4 isn't as hard to drive as people state, but I find the HE-4 to sound just, stellar with the Lyr, and that's with the stock tubes and the 6N1P or whatnot. It was magic. It was a clear notch above the Compass 2, NFB5, E9K, all which have plenty of power on tap for the HE-4, if we go off what people say nowadays. ALl of them are pretty good amps by their own right, depensing on who you ask. I'm not one to exagherrate amp differences,m but in the case of the HE-4...pairing it with some budget amp is a huge disservice to it.

Oh yes, I wasn't exactly a fan of the Lyr for other headphones, so when I say it was wonderful for the HE-4, I mean it.

Think of it this way: I wouldn't own the HE-4 unless I had the Lyr. I liked it with the other amps I owned, but not enough to make me wanna keep it. The Lyr however, made the HE-4 basically top 3 for me.
Edited by Mad Lust Envy - 6/1/14 at 5:38am
post #2218 of 3923
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad Lust Envy View Post

The HE-4 definitely sounded more magical with the Lyr than the SA-31, though it did sound more technically accurate and cleaner withthe latter. The HE-4 just had a rawness that I really liked with the Lyr, especially in the bass. The HE-4 sounded almost reference with the SA-31, but not as dynamic.

I know if I were looking to amp the HE-4, the Lyr 2 would be on the top of my list. People can say all they want about how the HE-4 isn't as hard to drive as people state, but I find the HE-4 to sound just, stellar with the Lyr, and that's with the stock tubes and the 6N1P or whatnot. It was magic. It was a clear notch above the Compass 2, NFB5, E9K, all which have plenty of power on tap for the HE-4, if we go off what people say nowadays. ALl of them are pretty good amps by their own right, depensing on who you ask. I'm not one to exagherrate amp differences,m but in the case of the HE-4...pairing it with some budget amp is a huge disservice to it.

Oh yes, I wasn't exactly a fan of the Lyr for other headphones, so when I say it was wonderful for the HE-4, I mean it.

Think of it this way: I wouldn't own the HE-4 unless I had the Lyr. I liked it with the other amps I owned, but not enough to make me wanna keep it. The Lyr however, made the HE-4 basically top 3 for me.

 

1) Synergy is not the same as hard-to-drive nature... HE-4 is not a hard-to-drive headphone in terms of power, not in my experience. HE-500 or HE-6 most probably yes. HE-4 or HE-400? Not really in my experience. Both HE-4 and HE-400 sounded similarly tight and fast enough out of a smartphone, and improved in a similar way once I used a quality headamp/DAC... On the other hand, HE-500 always sounded to me like it could benefit from a beefy speaker amp - little slow and muddy in comparison to other products in similar price category.

 

2) Buying a headphone amplifier because of one specific headphone is not what I call rational. Maybe if you are absolutely sure these are going to stay with you for years... Well, never happened to me so far as every headphone has its flaws and I enjoy exploring new things... And yeah, I have better things to spend my money for - family etc.

 

3) Schiit Lyr 2 =/= Schiit Lyr. Don't recommend a product to someone without really knowing it.


Edited by Ron12 - 6/1/14 at 6:18am
post #2219 of 3923
Quote:
Originally Posted by hemipowered007 View Post

I'm assuming you just held those in place?

That is correct, friction and a bit of goofyness. Definitely takes care of any treble issues anyone may complain about the HE-4 hooked up to a SS amp. I don't dare try it with tubes... well until I get unpacked after move in day next week!
post #2220 of 3923

After testing out Hifiman velour and pleather pads with different dampening materials (rug liner(s), foam(s), felt) inserted directly inside pads, I found that the most natural combination out of many was PLEATHER PADS + FELT (note: felt needs to be inserted directly inside pads, not under, to provide the effect I am going to describe below). I am therefore using felt circles of appr. 6.7cm diamater and 2mm thickness.

 

Especially focusing on both male and female vocals, I found that while both pleather and velour pads gives similarly nice male vocals (a bit different but similarly fine), female vocals are significantly less natural with velours (more sibilance, less natural tonality). With pleather pads, I would say that both male and female vocals were sufficiently natural but the felt improved on that appreciably - it basically made both male and female vocals a bit more full and somewhat "shifted" sibilance in a way that it's pronounced in a more natural way (there is still some slight sibilance but now more authentic/natural-sounding).

 

Beside tonality, felt makes background more black as it decreases airiness... You can subjectively hear a bit more of bass impact which I find nice (kind of approaching the way velours present subbass). On the other hand, while I somewhat even prefer the way soundstage is now presented (sounds appear more "out of nowhere" and soundstage width is somewhat better perceived due to improved blackness), I can hear a slight decrease in imaging sharpness (still the same accuracy but less of the in-your-face effect), and there is slightly less of the final detail.

 

 

The way I see it, I am gonna stick with the Hifiman pleathers (with felt and my previous modification to make them angled and a bit more tough) and eventually wait for the new Hifiman pads...


Edited by Ron12 - 6/14/14 at 2:21am
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