Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › I'm buying the Fiio e7/e9 dac+amp combo. Should I upgrade my Sennheiser HD 598 to the Sennheiser HD 650?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

I'm buying the Fiio e7/e9 dac+amp combo. Should I upgrade my Sennheiser HD 598 to the Sennheiser...

post #1 of 38
Thread Starter 

I decided on buying the e7/e9 dac/amp combo from fiio and I also noticed that I can return and upgrade my HD 598s to the HD 650s for about $70.  The question is, should I?  Will my listening experience sound better with the amp'd 598s or 650s?  To round this question out.  My plans are to use the e7/e9 as a desktop for home use, and the e7 by itself for portable use.  Will the e7 by itself be better to power the 598s or 650s? 

 

Also, I keep reading that amps improve sound quality, but I still don't understand how.  From what I heard even the HD 800s can't sound very good, unless they're amped.  Which baffles me.  I thought it was because a DAC amp like the e7 basically uses an improved sound card so it sounds better.  But now I'm reading that it's because there isn't enough power to drive them, which I don't really get what it means.   I've been a music lover my entire life, but I am not just started to get into the business of picking the right equipment.

post #2 of 38
Thread Starter 

Bump.   Any sound advice on the topic from an expert on these forums?

post #3 of 38

I have the Sennheiser HD-595's and use them with the FiiOe7/e9 combo. I have noticed a considerable increase in sound quality but I think most of this difference is due to the DAC as I've never had one before and the soundcard in my computer is stock. I have never heard the HD650's but I would say that you would notice an upgrade in sound as the HD650s are harder to drive but have a better sound. I bought the HD595s initially as I heard they did not need an amp in order to sound good, where as the 650s do. 

 

I'm not positive but I'd say that the 650s would sound great coming from the e7/e9 combo as the e9 has a lot of juice to power the 650s, however I'm not so sure how the e7/portable rig would work. The 595s are easy to drive and I still find myself wanting more while listening out of my iPod and E7. 

post #4 of 38

The e7 will not be enough for the 650 and neither of those headphones are portable. The 598 and 650 sound so different that you would have to decide. Do you want a smoother more refined sound or a more lively, punchier sound? All speakers/drivers have certain power requirements and there are different amps to help meet those power needs. A DAC has nothing to do with it. A DAC just converts digital audio into analog audio.

post #5 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by junebug654 View Post

 

Also, I keep reading that amps improve sound quality, but I still don't understand how.  From what I heard even the HD 800s can't sound very good, unless they're amped.  Which baffles me.  I thought it was because a DAC amp like the e7 basically uses an improved sound card so it sounds better.  But now I'm reading that it's because there isn't enough power to drive them, which I don't really get what it means.   I've been a music lover my entire life, but I am not just started to get into the business of picking the right equipment.


My favorite analogy: think about going from a regular car to a sports car. Does it have the potential to perform better? Absolutely, but not if you are filling it with regular gas. Sports cars have a lot of high end performance potential but require premium gas to utilize it. Your headphones are no different. A soundcard/DAC is like the engine; where it all starts. The better the engine the better it will run, but it still needs the proper fuel. If a regular headphone jack is like regular gas, then a headphone amplifier is like premium gas, with rocket boosters installed to the back end of the car.

 

Make more sense?

post #6 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slaughter View Post

The e7 will not be enough for the 650 and neither of those headphones are portable. The 598 and 650 sound so different that you would have to decide. Do you want a smoother more refined sound or a more lively, punchier sound? All speakers/drivers have certain power requirements and there are different amps to help meet those power needs. A DAC has nothing to do with it. A DAC just converts digital audio into analog audio.



Just a note, the E7 is a DAC while attached to the E9, and an Amp while portable, albeit not a very powerful one. 

post #7 of 38
Thread Starter 

That example actually does make sense thanks

 

 

And I understand that these headphones leak, but leakage isn't that much of a problem because in the places I use these phones publicly, it's too loud to think even, so sound leakage will hardly pester anybody.

 

I'm just curious as to the question if I should upgrade and will it be noticeable.  And will the e7 be able to amp the HD 650 by itself, if and when I go portable.  I've read the specs on the e7 without the e9 combo and it says that the dac/amp can amp headphones upto 300 ohms, which if I'm not mistaken is the exact same ammount of impedance that the HD 650s have.

post #8 of 38
Thread Starter 

To add to an earlier post even if the e7 couldn't fully amp the 650 headphones, it's not like they won't work at all.  From what I understand amps just maximize the potential for opiminal sound quality.  So using the 650s without any amp at all, they would still work, but just won't sound as good as they could with an amplifier.

post #9 of 38

Most people report the 650 sounding really bad without proper amplification. They are already laid back headphones, so most people who under power them find them very boring. And actually some people who properly power them find them boring.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by junebug654 View Post

To add to an earlier post even if the e7 couldn't fully amp the 650 headphones, it's not like they won't work at all.  From what I understand amps just maximize the potential for opiminal sound quality.  So using the 650s without any amp at all, they would still work, but just won't sound as good as they could with an amplifier.

post #10 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by junebug654 View Post

I'm just curious as to the question if I should upgrade and will it be noticeable.  And will the e7 be able to amp the HD 650 by itself, if and when I go portable.  I've read the specs on the e7 without the e9 combo and it says that the dac/amp can amp headphones upto 300 ohms, which if I'm not mistaken is the exact same ammount of impedance that the HD 650s have.


As far as the 598 vs 650 I have no experience with these. If they are different sound signatures like some are saying I advise you to research more into which kind of sound you prefer.

 

Yes technically the E7 is rated at 300 ohms but as I have said in one of your other threads ohm ratings do give insight, but do not have an exact representation of how much power is needed, or is actually being provided. As a portable amp, the E7 is very weak and cannot drive headphones like the HD 650, even if the specifications add up.

 

If you need a portable amp that can power these either wait for the E11, or try another brand of portable amp that is already available.

 

Also in regards to sound leakage, the problem is not just the leakage itself but the lack of isolation as well. Even if you plan to use open headphones in already loud environments, those outside noises will make your music harder for you to hear, forcing you to turn up the volume. By the time you reach an appropriate ratio of hearing your music over the background noise, your headphones will either be too loud for you to listen or now loud enough to draw attention towards you.

 

Many of us have separate portable and home setups. I realize this costs more money and becomes expensive very quickly; unfortunately that is just the nature of this hobby.

 

In any case, nobody has acquired their gear all at once; it all happens over time. Just try to prioritize what matters most to you for now; public or home listening, and continue to build as you can afford it.

post #11 of 38
Thread Starter 

The only reason I'm mentioning the HD 650s is because I have the ability to trade my HD 598s in for them and around $80 which seems like a decent deal, but I wanna make sure I'm going to make the right decision.   The problem is I haven't tested my HD 598s with the e7/e9 yet, so I have no research to compare them to how 650s sound.  I like being able to have headphones that can regcognize the faintest of notes in a classical composition to being able to dish out the filfhiest sounding bass from dubstep or hardstyle music.

 

Edit: Also the main reason I bought my 598s in the start was because I did not plan on using an amp, because at the time of my lack of knowledge, I didn't know you could get a quality dac/amp like the e7/e9 for 200 which is in my price range.     Ideally, if I could I'd get the Sennheiser HD 800s, but I'm no where near it's price range at this moment.

post #12 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by junebug654 View Post

The only reason I'm mentioning the HD 650s is because I have the ability to trade my HD 598s in for them and around $80 which seems like a decent deal, but I wanna make sure I'm going to make the right decision.   The problem is I haven't tested my HD 598s with the e7/e9 yet, so I have no research to compare them to how 650s sound.  I like being able to have headphones that can regcognize the faintest of notes in a classical composition to being able to dish out the filfhiest sounding bass from dubstep or hardstyle music.

 

Based on what I know of the HD 650 classical is one of it's strongest points.

 

Depending on the return/exchange policy on your 598's you may be able to test them with the E7/E9 before sending them back; assuming you ordered them already.

 

In any case, the HD 650 should realize a much more dramatic change from the E7/E9 than the 598.

post #13 of 38
Thread Starter 

The main point so far that has me leading to keeping my 598s over the 650s is that someone earlier said that if the 650s aren't properly amp'd they actually sound worse than the 598s.  I will use the e7 if I go portable, so if the 598s are easier to amp then that is a major plus for me.  Also if the difference between the 650s and 598s are EXTREMELY minor, then I don't see the point of paying an extra $100, personally I can just save that $100 for the 800s.  Also, this might be such a lame reason, but to me the 650s look hidious, compared to the 598s.  Not the colour, but I hate with a passion seeing the inside of headphones, and I love how the 598s cover it with a grill.  However, Sound Quality > looks  so that point is very minor in my decision making.

post #14 of 38

From Headfonia review, F9 capable of driving HD650: http://www.headfonia.com/fiio-e9-dekstop-amplifier

FWIR HD650 have different sound signature from HD598, HD650 is darker than HD598. Here some reviews from headfonia: http://www.headfonia.com/the-sennheiser-trio-hd580-hd600-hd650/ http://www.headfonia.com/hd600-and-hd598-comparison/ http://www.headfonia.com/old-and-new-hd555-hd558-hd598/ http://www.headfonia.com/fiio-e7-portable-dac/

Hope it help

post #15 of 38

I got that combo E7/E9 with HD650 to me is fairly good, I haven't heard the HD598 myself can't comment on that.  If your audio files are exactly top end like FLAC or cd quality you probably satisfy with the HD598.  E9 can drive the HD650 fairly well, probably won't be good as some $1000 amp but it will do the job.  That is my 2 cents.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphones (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › I'm buying the Fiio e7/e9 dac+amp combo. Should I upgrade my Sennheiser HD 598 to the Sennheiser HD 650?