So reflecting on the month I've owned my HE500s and I really enjoy them but there a few things that stick with me. I'm currently running them with an Essence St as DAC & Emotiva Mini-X as amp. I'd say they can be downright amazing with the right music, and for 70-80% of what I listen to I love them. That said, on some certain albums a few things drive me crazy, horns/brass sound quite muted to my ears, the treble is literally too polite, plenty of detail sure, but almost lifeless, certain rough recordings also take on this smoothed over feeling that I kinda find less then great, I know some would say why complain if it makes poor recordings sound more smooth? Well while a valid point as any it takes the bite out of some poorly recorded albums I own and almost feels like filter over them which annoys me. Am I crazy or is this just Ortho voodoo at work? Either way I really enjoy them for most things, but I think the Magnums will be staying for the time I need a bit more ruthless treble and for lofi stuff.
I can relate to some albums sounding slightly muted and unsatisfying. But I largely attribute that to the recordings themselves, rather than the headphones or other equipment. The HE-500s are the most neutral headphones I own, and it can be shocking sometimes when I listen to an album that I really love and find it to come across a bit flat and lifeless (compared to how it sounds on highly coloured headphones like the V-MODAs). But this is something I've seen reported by many people on these forums - that really good equipment can be a double-edged sword, in that it can completely turn you off certain albums that aren't particularly well recorded and produced (and that therefore only sound satisfying through coloured equipment that boosts the bass and/or treble).