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Sennheiser HD 600 Impressions Thread - Page 328

post #4906 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by amcananey View Post

Look, I'm not saying that damping is BS. I'm not saying that good engineering practices are BS. I'm not saying that scientific measurements are BS. Nor am I saying that I have golden ears or that I would generally survive a double-blind test of much of my gear. But if there is anything in this hobby that I am confident in, after trying dozens and dozens of amps and headphones, it is that the HD600 and Crack are an outstanding combination, fully the equal (in terms of delivering pure pleasure) to many, many combinations costing thousands more. I'm not claiming that it will yield the best test results in the lab, but in terms of musicality AND detail AND bass AND sparkle AND mids AND PRAT AND speed, the only thing better that I've experienced is the HD800s + Crack, or the HE-6 + certain select amps.

An amp is a total package. One can have excellent damping but fall flat elsewhere. The HE-6 is tough to drive because it has an efficiency of only 83.5 dB.

All of this engineering can be tough to swallow for the lay person. Audiophiles are passionate about their gear and the pursuit of best sound and are susceptible to subjective perception and the stories that circulate. Companies like Monster love to take advantage of this.

post #4907 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by StanD View Post
 

An amp is a total package. One can have excellent damping but fall flat elsewhere. The HE-6 is tough to drive because it has an efficiency of only 83.5 dB.

All of this engineering can be tough to swallow for the lay person. Audiophiles are passionate about their gear and the pursuit of best sound and are susceptible to subjective perception and the stories that circulate. Companies like Monster love to take advantage of this.

Subjective perception is all we have my friend. 

 

Anyways, expert engineers might find it hard to swallow that my HD600's sound great out of a NAD integrate that must have 100+ ohm output. Nice full and tight bass, smooth and detailed top end... Tis better than any HP amp I've tried. :ksc75smile: 

post #4908 of 8993
Damping factor is only one of many things that affect how a headphone will perform. Remember, there is a reason why the HD 600 has a 300 ohm impedance rating. It's because there are many many windings around the voice coil. Low impedance headphones have fewer windings and therefore rely on damping a lot more to control driver excursion.

Another consideration is that the HD 600 was designed over two decades ago. This is when most headphones were being plugged into stereo receivers, which back then typically had high output impedance (I think I read somewhere that 120 ohms was the "industry accepted standard"). After my experience with the Bottlehead Crack, I have become convinced that the HD 600 was intended to be used with a 120 ohm output impedance amp.

Just my theory...
Edited by palmfish - 10/29/13 at 11:59am
post #4909 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post
 

Subjective perception is all we have my friend. 

 

Anyways, expert engineers might find it hard to swallow that my HD600's sound great out of a NAD integrate that must have 100+ ohm output. Nice full and tight bass, smooth and detailed top end... Tis better than any HP amp I've tried. :ksc75smile: 

Then do enjoy your setup. Keep in mind the same engineers designed the HP's and amps, so there must be something to it. Thing is that we tend to pass on our perceptions as gospel to others and get upset when challenged rather than pass it on an IMO and accept any disagreement in a friendly manner. IMO the HD600 is pretty easy to drive and any decent amp should bring happiness to the ears they rest upon. 

post #4910 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by palmfish View Post

Damping factor is only one of many things that affect how a headphone will perform. Remember, there is a reason why the HD 600 has a 300 ohm impedance rating. It's because there are many many windings around the voice coil. Low impedance headphones have fewer windings and therefore rely on damping a lot more to control driver excursion.

Another consideration is that the HD 600 was designed over two decades ago. This is when most headphones were being plugged into stereo receivers, which back then typically had high output impedance (I believe 120 ohms was the "industry accepted standard). After my experience with the Bottlehead Crack, I have become convinced that the HD 600 was intended to be used with a 120 ohm output impedance amp.

Just my theory...

Most engineers will tell you that the 120 Ohm standard was a goofy idea and makes little sense, especially today. I wouldn't try that on a hungry HE-6 that wants 5 watts at 50 Ohms. It'll probably explode someone's head at 5 watts, then again 5 watts would set an HD600 on fire.

Damping affects the HD600, only the driving impedance need not be as low as a required by a low impedance can.

post #4911 of 8993

I really want to try the crack amp.

Cause I run my 600s with M1 HPA amp.. And it does a excellent job with the HD600. 

With my M1 HPA + HRT music streamer II+ the HD600 feels pretty damn neutral and fast, not laidback at all. 

And it definitely sounds right.

 

I want to recommend the M1 HPA but if the crack would do a better job it would be stupid to buy m1 hpa. 

post #4912 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by StanD View Post
 

Most engineers will tell you that the 120 Ohm standard was a goofy idea and makes little sense, especially today. I wouldn't try that on a hungry HE-6 that wants 5 watts at 50 Ohms. It'll probably explode someone's head at 5 watts, then again 5 watts would set an HD600 on fire.

Damping affects the HD600, only the driving impedance need not be as low as a required by a low impedance can.

I am curious, and mean no disrespect.  have you done testing with amps and headphones, or are your conclusions based on strict numbers?  What is the best amp you have found for the 600's?  

post #4913 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
 

I really want to try the crack amp.

Cause I run my 600s with M1 HPA amp.. And it does a excellent job with the HD600. 

With my M1 HPA + HRT music streamer II+ the HD600 feels pretty damn neutral and fast, not laidback at all. 

And it definitely sounds right.

 

I want to recommend the M1 HPA but if the crack would do a better job it would be stupid to buy m1 hpa. 

Your M1 HPA is a nice looking amp. Less than 1 Ohm output impedance and great specs. and probably can deliver the goods with most cans. Unless you want to color the sound, you probably won't find better. I'll be glad to evaluate it for you, for lets say a year or two :D

post #4914 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by StanD View Post

Most engineers will tell you that the 120 Ohm standard was a goofy idea and makes little sense, especially today. I wouldn't try that on a hungry HE-6 that wants 5 watts at 50 Ohms. It'll probably explode someone's head at 5 watts, then again 5 watts would set an HD600 on fire.
Damping affects the HD600, only the driving impedance need not be as low as a required by a low impedance can.

Yes, 120 ohms is a pretty arbitrary number - even back then.

Nevertheless, i have heard a number of headphones that defy the 8:1 ratio gospel. The HD 600 and 800, and the Denon AH-DX000. With the Denons, they sounded basically the same no matter what amp I plugged them into. I attributed that to an exceptionally large magnet which provided a high level of mechanical damping, thus making electrical damping from the amp unecessary.

I think the 8:1 rule is valid for the vast majority of amps and headphones, but I do believe there are exceptions and other factors that come into play with some combinations. I used to be a devout 8:1 preacher - until I heard the HD 800 driven by a Crack. If you not heard this combo (and I strongly suspect you haven't), I highly recommend it.
post #4915 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by StanD View Post

IMO the HD600 is pretty easy to drive and any decent amp should bring happiness to the ears they rest upon. 

 



You won't get any argument out of me on that front, and it is something I have said many times in this thread. The HD600s sound good out of just about anything, but I do find that they sound particularly good with the Crack.

I'm reminded of a discussion I had a while back with someone about the Denon D5000s. He said, "The D5000s are terrible. They have tons of chamber resonance, a wonky sound signature and they bear no resemblance to neutrality."

My response was: The D5000s are wonderful. They have tons of chamber resonance, a wonky sound signature and they bear no resemblance to neutrality."







[FWIW, I have long since moved past the D5000s (which I still have fond memories of).]
post #4916 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keithpgdrb View Post
 

I am curious, and mean no disrespect.  have you done testing with amps and headphones, or are your conclusions based on strict numbers?  What is the best amp you have found for the 600's?  

Yes I have. If one can be unbiased any good tube or SS amp will do a great job as long as:

  1. They are designed well
  2. Are operating within good Specs.
  3. You are looking for uncolored sound.

 

Some people are looking for an open loop tube amp and roll tubes to get a desired "warm" effect which is comprised of adding even harmonics. Or they will alter the FR of their cans by using a particular amp. To me I have no desire to add any harmonic distortion or change the FR of my cans other than the occasional low freq (below 100 Hz) boost using the low shelf of a parametric EQ. IMO, if the cans I picked don't sound right for me on a good clean amp, I made the wrong choice.

 

If you compare the pricey Sennheiser amp or other high grade/expensive amps to a cheap FiiO E12:

  • The Sennheiser can reach loudness levels that one will regret once they need a hearing aid. Those levels are not going to be comfortable.
  • Because of the higher possible Vp-p and lesser noise you could achieve a higher DR that in most cases won't make a difference because much of the music we listen to is overly compressed.
    • One is willing to listen in a dead quite room and turn off the AC or heating system. These are open cans and you will hear that with very dynamic music.
  • How much music is truly available that most of us listen to which have low enough noise and the DR that we can truly drive cans from a whisper to the blast of dynamite (ouch)?
    • How often do we have music with such dynamic range as to need ideal headroom to avoid clipping that a well enough amp already has us covered for our real world cases?
  • The FiiO E12 will not reach the same ear splitting levels that will burst one's head, but they can still ring your ears.
  • The inexpensive ($249) Schiit ASGARD 2 should bring a smile to most ears and maybe damage them if you turn it up for too long.
  • If you're using a low efficiency planar can, then you've got a special case and need a very powerful amp.

 

  • To sum it up a lousy amp sounds bad.
  • An amp being used for cans that they are not designed will not sound good, Impedance, current and Vp-p as appropriate are the first things that come to mind.
  • How many people are perceiving balanced wiring as sounding better when they don't realize that they're getting a 6 dB voltage gain and we perceive increased bass and treble because of that. Save your money and use a SE wiring and turn up the gain to match.

 

There is a wide range of great neutral sounding amps of varying prices where some have spec differences that are either academic (measurable but beyond human perception) or they cost more because they are built using better quality components that will last longer of much better physical appearance/construction. One has much to pick from according to their desires. Most people really can't tell the differences between quality components.

 

I used to work in the music/recording business and worked with well known artists and frequented some of the top studios in NYC. I worked with electronic music synthesizers, designing modifying, etc. I was on a first name basis with Robert Moog.

 

I've been experimenting with a design for a low cost DIY amp using parts mostly available at Radio Shack but where one can substitute better stuff, like opamps (less noise better slew rate) or transistors (more power). One day when I'm done I'll put together a PDF and share it with everyone. There is much to be done and I'm having fun.

 

One last thing, I am getting writer's cramp, the only way someone is taking my HD600's away is by prying them out of my dead hands,.

post #4917 of 8993

Did you call him Robert or Rob? :beerchug: 

 

or Bob..? 

post #4918 of 8993

So anyone plan on putting some hours on their cans tonight?  I'm thinking about listening to some Camel this evening.  :atsmile:

post #4919 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post
 

Did you call him Robert or Rob? :beerchug: 

 

or Bob..? 

I called him Bob, we're both from The Bronx, although he manufactured theremin kits about a year before I was born. Something he took pleasure in teasing me about.

post #4920 of 8993
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keithpgdrb View Post
 

so your saying the crack is not a good match for the 600?  I'm confused.  even tyle likes it.

 

Probably for some the extra bass, although uncontrolled to some degree, is considered pleasing.

 

Regardless, concerning the Bottlehead Crack, there's obviously a lot of groupthink and confirmation and expectation bias going on here. Especially comments such as 'a day and night difference' when compared with already excellent amps such as the O2 should be ignored imo.

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