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HiFiman HE-500 (HE as in High End) Proving to be an enjoyable experience in listening. . - Page 318

post #4756 of 14586
Quote:
Originally Posted by GREQ View Post

I've been seriously entertaining the thought of getting the O2 for my HE-500 because of all the love I've read about it, and recommendations given.

But I've read some believe it's simply not powerful enough to truly deliver the goods.

 

Could you guys give a short list of the powerful amps that do the HE-500 justice?  From what I've read, anything around 2W is what people recommend (sorry if this sounds noobish, I know nothing about electrical engineering, all those numbers hurt my brain)

Ideally I'm looking at a similar budget, but I did buy the HE-500, so I'm probably willing to increase my budget in future by a few hundred [insert currency].

I use an Audio-gd NFB-6 to power my HE-500 in a fully balanced chain with outstanding results.  It delivers 5.92 watts into the '500's 38 ohms and was a bit over $500 including remote control and shipping from Hong Kong to the USA.  


Edited by Andolink - 5/8/13 at 2:23am
post #4757 of 14586
I've heard the HE 500'S on my NFB- 10 in balanced mode and they sounded really good. The extra current really brings them to life and gives the bass a bit more body.
post #4758 of 14586

And now let's just imagine for a moment that my budget is slightly closer to the Zimbabwean dollar tongue.gif, are there any amps have balls and have seriously wow'ed (price/performance) and come very close to the more expensive ones?


I'm not looking for perfection, just the power to do my headphones justice. 

 

The  Audio-gd NFB-6 looks good, I'll definitely keep it on my list, but it's really at the TOP of my budget. 

To put things into perspective I'm currently using a simple Fisher 80's stereo receiver as my headphone amp, and I think it sounds bloody brilliant. 

post #4759 of 14586
Quote:
Originally Posted by GREQ View Post

And now let's just imagine for a moment that my budget is slightly closer to the Zimbabwean dollar 
tongue.gif
, are there any amps have balls and have seriously wow'ed (price/performance) and come very close to the more expensive ones?



I'm not looking for perfection, just the power to do my headphones justice. 


The  Audio-gd NFB-6 looks good, I'll definitely keep it on my list, but it's really at the TOP of my budget. 

To put things into perspective
 I'm currently
 using a simple Fisher 80's stereo receiver as my headphone amp, and I think it sounds bloody brilliant. 


If you can afford the Audio Gd 6 I'd go with that as it's fully balanced.
post #4760 of 14586
Quote:
Originally Posted by dryvadeum View Post


If you can afford the Audio Gd 6 I'd go with that as it's fully balanced.

But to run balanced wouldn't I also need a new cable?

post #4761 of 14586
^ yup
post #4762 of 14586
Quote:
Originally Posted by GREQ View Post

I've been seriously entertaining the thought of getting the O2 for my HE-500 because of all the love I've read about it, and recommendations given.

But I've read some believe it's simply not powerful enough to truly deliver the goods.

 

Could you guys give a short list of the powerful amps that do the HE-500 justice?  From what I've read, anything around 2W is what people recommend (sorry if this sounds noobish, I know nothing about electrical engineering, all those numbers hurt my brain)

Ideally I'm looking at a similar budget, but I did buy the HE-500, so I'm probably willing to increase my budget in future by a few hundred [insert currency].

 

The O2 for acoustical stuff is great. For bass heavy music, mostly not. Also, the cleanest, unhindered vocals I have ever heard were from the O2. Every subtle change in pitch comes out in the O2. Overall, would I recommend it for the planars like HE-500 or LCD-2...not so much, especially considering that you can get speaker amps around that price.

 

Although if you have any sensitive headphones like Denon's or IEM's, then the O2 is absolutely worth it. It even makes something like the D2000 much faster for example. Definitely recommended for transparency. For this price point, you might want to consider the O2 in the future for different purposes.

 

Having said that, Lyr is pretty good, although why spend that much when you can get a speaker amp for less or even the same that can be doubled effectively as a speaker and headphone amp. 

 

Regarding the power output. 1 Watt is considered the bare minimum technically. Give this a quick read: http://support.audeze.com/entries/20866002-Selecting-an-amp- 

 

Simple, easy read and can also apply to HE-500 given the similarities.

post #4763 of 14586
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoom25 View Post

 

The O2 for acoustical stuff is great. For bass heavy music, mostly not. 

Would you say that a coloured amp would be better for bass heavy music, or does the HE-500 just need a beefier amp to help the bass 'sing' properly?

post #4764 of 14586
Quote:
Originally Posted by GREQ View Post

Would you say that a coloured amp would be better for bass heavy music, or does the HE-500 just need a beefier amp to help the bass 'sing' properly?

Doesn't need to be heavily coloured, any amp that is "warmer than neutral" will accentuate the bass enough for it to sing.

post #4765 of 14586
Quote:
Having said that, Lyr is pretty good, although why spend that much when you can get a speaker amp for less or even the same that can be doubled effectively as a speaker and headphone amp. 

 

Emotiva a-100 with speaker cables.  There's a huge thread on that.  

 

There's also a little Fiio e12 that on paper should have enough juice.  But I might be wrong on that one.

 

A used Lyr should do well.  

post #4766 of 14586
Quote:
Originally Posted by GREQ View Post

Would you say that a coloured amp would be better for bass heavy music, or does the HE-500 just need a beefier amp to help the bass 'sing' properly?

 

Not too coloured with the HE-500 as they are fairly neutral all around, so changing a certain aspect can mess up the sound they are intended for. Although if you are one of those sensitive people to treble, then supposedly you can switch over to pleathers or get a darker amp. With speaker amps from Emotiva and Marantz, I have noticed that the planars get better treble extension.

 

Regarding bass, I primarily listen to electronic music, so I would say bass is fairly important as well. Even with O2 on really good recordings, the bass was phenomenal with the O2, sometimes even better than O2 on the same recording. Like almost all of Bassnectar's albums sounded better on O2 than Emotiva. However, this for some reason only happened with few albums, and on most of the days, the O2 would be crap. 

 

Before that, I used the E10 for some time, which surprisingly provided some good thump.

 

With increasingly power (assuming a neutral amp and consistent distortion specs), I have noticed you don't necessarily always get more bass quantity, but you do get more bass control and extension and also a better bass-mid-treble ratio. It sounds more fuller with better separation. I did a long review on the Emotiva thread comparing the O2 and Emotiva...you can use that to get somewhat of an idea where I stand with the Emotiva.

 

All in all, if I had to recommend you an amp, it'd be the Emotiva at the price point. It's around $200 and works great with LCD-2, HE-500 as well as my tower speakers, so win-win. I've heard others say they found almost no difference between the Emotiva and Lyr. So again why spend more, when you can get that for less, as well as double back for speakers.

 

Although if you wanted to spend more around $500, I'd look at Marantz products. I've tried the Marantz PM6004 (45 Watts at 8 ohms), and I liked it more than Emotiva with headphones simply due to the added transparency. You can typically find good deals on those as well and save anywhere from $100-$200, used or even new at times. I only tried it out once and found it to work well. I don't live with it so can't really comment as I think you need at least a month to really get a handle on an any equipment. 

 

For planars, I'd try out the Emotiva first with its price. Overall good bass and you'll get good soundstage. I've had it for 5 months, and for that price, I am very happy with it. Although would I say, in terms of ultimate sonic capability to bring the planars to sound their best, is the Emotiva there? Nope. Is it enjoyable? Yup biggrin.gif (and your wallet will thank you)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Contrails View Post

 

Emotiva a-100 with speaker cables.  There's a huge thread on that.  

 

There's also a little Fiio e12 that on paper should have enough juice.  But I might be wrong on that one.

 

A used Lyr should do well.  

 

I would love to try a E12 sometime. Although, even within Fiio products, having more power doesn't always mean better sound. For example, running LCD-2 and HE-500 out of E10 vs E11 (has more power) on high gain, I found the E10 to sound a lot better.

 

Having said that, I might pick up a Fiio A1 Speaker Amp (14W per channel) and goes for $69 to see how that thing handles the planars...for science, of course.

 

Also, would agree on the Emotiva Mini amp. Have it and like it (although more with speakers).

post #4767 of 14586

@Zoom25

I actually stumbled on the Emotiva thread a couple of days ago, but I read elsewhere on the interwebz (can't find the source at the mo') that high watt amps can damage headphones over an extended period of time - is that just a load of BS?

 

Going down the Emotiva road sounds like a lot of fun, but naturally I'm worried about accidentally turning the volume past 8 o' clock and blowing my headphones (which is a very real threat with a 3 year old running about the house) - also the costs go up due to needing new cables and I would need to import it from the US, so that's another $50-100 (cables and tax).... *deep lengthy sigh*

 

Considering I listen to almost any music (from classical to metal and electronic) I might just start with an O2 and see what happens; as you say the O2 is good with acoustic stuff which my music library is predominantly comprised of.

post #4768 of 14586
Quote:
Originally Posted by GREQ View Post

@Zoom25

I actually stumbled on the Emotiva thread a couple of days ago, but I read elsewhere on the interwebz (can't find the source at the mo') that high watt amps can damage headphones over an extended period of time - is that just a load of BS?

 

Going down the Emotiva road sounds like a lot of fun, but naturally I'm worried about accidentally turning the volume past 8 o' clock and blowing my headphones (which is a very real threat with a 3 year old running about the house) - also the costs go up due to needing new cables and I would need to import it from the US, so that's another $50-100 (cables and tax).... *deep lengthy sigh*

 

Considering I listen to almost any music (from classical to metal and electronic) I might just start with an O2 and see what happens; as you say the O2 is good with acoustic stuff which my music library is predominantly comprised of.

 

Only if you pump enough watts to damage the phones in the first place. By that logic many class D amp would be throw in the bin (think 700WPC max rating). Also you don't need to fixate on the Emotiva, it's not like it is the king of budget amp or anything. We in Europe got plenty of epic speaker amps to play with bigsmile_face.gif'

 

 

400

 

Pic related, the Emotiva went back shortly =p, and the T-amp cost less than the thing to boot! I do think however, US folk got a good bargain if they can grab the thing for sale @ 175 bucks though (comparing to new stuff)


Edited by khaine1711 - 5/8/13 at 7:11am
post #4769 of 14586

Has anyone tried He 500 with woo WA7 ? I would like you to know if the amp is capable of driving the He 500. tongue.gif

post #4770 of 14586
Quote:
We in Europe got plenty of epic speaker amps to play with

 

Marantz or Pioneer pumping 50 watts max, 8 ohms is what I remember reading from the speaker amp thread.  And speaker cables for He500 is about $150 from BTG audio I think. 

 

Khaine1711, gotta love the metrum in your pic. I have heard a lot of good things about it, but I ended up picking up a m-dac as it was available locally and the metrum with a good usb/spdif was out of my budget.  Sorry about the derailment. 

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