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HiFiman HE-500 (HE as in High End) Proving to be an enjoyable experience in listening. . - Page 5

post #61 of 14903

Blind ordered like the rest of my gear. A little afraid with this purchase because I never know if the bass will suit me or not. I was really thinking about the LCD 2 because of the kind of music I listen to a lot...But I can't get past how much I hate the way they look (yeah, yeah...I know).

 

I guess we'll find out when they get to me. I have a good feeling though...

post #62 of 14903

Well, guess what I got today? (Thanks Fang for the loan) Hint ... straight out of the box the sound is very detailed and SUPER CLEAR! biggrin.gif I really should let the unit burn in for at least 50 hours but in the first 4 hours I heard the unit going from being very top inclined to a much more balanced presentation. What I mean is that for the first 3 hours or so I found the HE-500 to have an energetic treble even out or tube amps (Isabella via the 1/4" plug or Isabella/30.2 using a 4-Pin plug out of the speaker tabs).

 

I should mention that being past my prime (I am currently 52 and will turn 53 by this month's end) I am less tolerant of any harshness in the presentation. So I was very relieved when the HE-500 started changing. I do not know if was due to the bass showing up after a few hours of being played, the top end mellowing or a combination. Regardless I am very satisfied and shall provide additional feedback. Here are some glamour shots.

 

DSCN1137.JPG

 

DSCN1138.JPG


Edited by mrarroyo - 5/12/11 at 4:48pm
post #63 of 14903
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrarroyo View Post

Well, guess what I got today? (Thanks Fang for the loan) Hint ... straight out of the box the sound is very detailed and SUPER CLEAR! biggrin.gif I really should let the unit burn in for at least 50 hours but in the first 4 hours I heard the unit going from being very top inclined to a much more balanced presentation. What I mean is that for the first 3 hours or so I found the HE-500 to have an energetic treble even out or tube amps (Isabella via the 1/4" plug or Isabella/30.2 using a 4-Pin plug out of the speaker tabs).

 

I should mention that being past my prime (I am currently 52 and will turn 53 by this month's end) I am less tolerant of any harshness in the presentation. So I was very relieved when the HE-500 started changing. I do not know if was due to the bass showing up after a few hours of being played, the top end mellowing or a combination. Regardless I am very satisfied and shall provide additional feedback. Here are some glamour shots.

 

DSCN1137.JPG

 

DSCN1138.JPG


The reason for the initial harshness is probably more the HE-6 cable settling in as opposed to the HE-500 drivers.  I venture this based on my experience with the production (shipping) version arriving with a Canare speaker cable terminated in a 1/4" TRS connector.

 

In my case I have already put several hundred hours of burn-in/listening time on the HE-6 cable (identical to the loaner's on your picture) and I immediately hooked up the HE-500s to that instead of messing with the stock cable.  I heard none of those artifacts out of the box you refer to and was very impressed by the sound.  I'd say the HE-500s--if themselves benefit to any burn-in--already sound extremely involving as long as they are equipped with the HE-6 cable or better.

 

And that was just my portable rig:  iPad2->Solo Transport->DB2->SR71B in balanced mode.  Very impressive sound signature, separation and presentation.  Full, smooth bass, seductive mids and transparent upper registers, although stops short of what the HE-6 can do in this regard, the overall effect is that I lacked nothing and driving it was a breeze compared to the HE-6.  Overall, this one is a keeper and the sweet mids was definitely a nice surprise value-add, especially now that the R10s are gone.

 

I'll take this pair to the Chicago Meet on Saturday where it will be paired up with the new RSA "Dark Star" prototype, so I'm looking forward to experiencing it with the SR71Bs big brother and a much higher end source gear.

 

post #64 of 14903

Have the loadners been coming with the HE 6 cable? I'd really like to hear impressiosn on the HE 500 cable considering that's what I'll have to use for awhile.

 

 

post #65 of 14903

I thought that the HE500 cable was stiff, but had no issue with the sound that way.  The HE500 really, really sound good, though - the more I have listened to them, the more I like them.  Really well balanced, and while maybe just a shade below the HE-6 and LCD-2 in transparency, they are still highly transparent.  At $899, they are really hard to beat, and I would buy them over the T1 and HD800 in a heartbeat.

post #66 of 14903



Stiff cables have never bothered me too much, and since I deal with the D7000 cable everyday I think I can handle it.

 

I took the leap today on the HE 500 and dropped my bank to nothing again. I think I'm really going to like what I hear, although buying blind always terrifies me. Nice to hear you'd have them over some of the other flagships.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skylab View Post

I thought that the HE500 cable was stiff, but had no issue with the sound that way.  The HE500 really, really sound good, though - the more I have listened to them, the more I like them.  Really well balanced, and while maybe just a shade below the HE-6 and LCD-2 in transparency, they are still highly transparent.  At $899, they are really hard to beat, and I would buy them over the T1 and HD800 in a heartbeat.



 

 

post #67 of 14903

Would you buy them over the HD800 if they cost the same? The scenario over here in Scandinavia is that the HD800 can be had for alot less than overseas, at around $900. I don't know if the HE-500 has free shipping like the HE-6, but customs fees/import taxes puts the HE-500's price above the HD800 for me.

 

I'm just curious whether that was a comment on their value or their capability regardless of price.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skylab View Post

I thought that the HE500 cable was stiff, but had no issue with the sound that way.  The HE500 really, really sound good, though - the more I have listened to them, the more I like them.  Really well balanced, and while maybe just a shade below the HE-6 and LCD-2 in transparency, they are still highly transparent.  At $899, they are really hard to beat, and I would buy them over the T1 and HD800 in a heartbeat.



 

post #68 of 14903
Quote:
Originally Posted by b0ck3n View Post

Would you buy them over the HD800 if they cost the same? The scenario over here in Scandinavia is that the HD800 can be had for alot less than overseas, at around $900. I don't know if the HE-500 has free shipping like the HE-6, but customs fees/import taxes puts the HE-500's price above the HD800 for me.

 

I'm just curious whether that was a comment on their value or their capability regardless of price.

 



 


Indeed, I would absolutely buy the HE500 over the HD800 regardless of price.  Aside from having a deeper and wider soundstage, the HE500 are better in every way, IMO - better resolution, more detail, smoother, and more transparent.

 

post #69 of 14903

Thanks for clearing that up. Do you also believe it to be an improvement over the HE-6? I remember reading your HE-6 vs LCD-2 comparison which heavily favoured the latter.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skylab View Post


Indeed, I would absolutely buy the HE500 over the HD800 regardless of price.  Aside from having a deeper and wider soundstage, the HE500 are better in every way, IMO - better resolution, more detail, smoother, and more transparent.

 



 

post #70 of 14903
Quote:
Originally Posted by b0ck3n View Post

Thanks for clearing that up. Do you also believe it to be an improvement over the HE-6? I remember reading your HE-6 vs LCD-2 comparison which heavily favoured the latter.

 

First of all, my HE-6 vs LCD-2 comparison MARGINALLY preferred the Audeze, not "heavily", at all.  And no, I slightly prefer the HE-6 over the HE500 - but with the caveat that I have very powerful amps with which to get the most out of the HE-6.

post #71 of 14903

I went back to re-read your review and realized I had it confused with someone elses, my apologies. You said "only the LCD-2 slightly nudges out the HE-6 overall for me".

post #72 of 14903

I have the 2nd cable since it was a special request.

 

Now that the HE-500 has about 20 hours of burn-in I do not hear any harshness and yet the unit is crystal clear and it allows for very good instrument separation. I also find its soundstage is wide and deep and I can place the instruments quite easily. I have also tried the HE-500 with three other amps, this can is harder to drive than the Grado RS-1 but not as hard to drive as the AKG K501. The volume on the Isabella driving the 30.2 and then the HE-500 was about 9 o'clock. The other amps and approximately volume pot setting has been:

 

HLLY SMK-II at about 10:30 o'clock

iBasso Boomslang PB1 fed from the Toucan DB1 with an iRiver H120 (120 GBHD and Rockboxed) using SysConcepts optical cable the volume via the adapter (Hirose to 4-Pin) at about 11 o'clock

Singlepower MPX3 Slam SE using a 5670 driver tube and a pair of Raytheon 6SN7 the volume at about 9 o'clock

 

Note: I listen at low volume levels, 64-67 dB (average) as tested using the c-weighted slow response settings on a Radio Shack db-meter model 33-2055.


Edited by mrarroyo - 5/13/11 at 9:05am
post #73 of 14903

Dear Dr. Fang,

 

May I ask what kind of drugs you are taking.  Is it some advanced form of methamphetamine?  How is it that one man in a few years time can produce more top tier headphones than all the top name brand factories combined?  Well what you take is your business but my empty wallet is mine.  Stop what you are doing.  Wait a few years so I can get bored of the HE-6 or at least till the name brand guys with the deep deep R&D pockets to catch up.  By then I may have something in my wallet again.  Get your PhD., go on vacation, do some shows, let the world catch up to you.  Please, my wallet begs you.

 

P.S.  lay off the amps too.

post #74 of 14903
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunneebear View Post

Dear Dr. Fang,

 

May I ask what kind of drugs you are taking.  Is it some advanced form of methamphetamine?  How is it that one man in a few years time can produce more top tier headphones than all the top name brand factories combined?  Well what you take is your business but my empty wallet is mine.  Stop what you are doing.  Wait a few years so I can get bored of the HE-6 or at least till the name brand guys with the deep deep R&D pockets to catch up.  By then I may have something in my wallet again.  Get your PhD., go on vacation, do some shows, let the world catch up to you.  Please, my wallet begs you.

 

P.S.  lay off the amps too.


These headphones are a monkey to kick.

Now if he wants to do a dac.......
post #75 of 14903

Is HE-500 a step above HE-5LE ?  I have been getting mixed messages.  

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