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HiFiman HE-500 (HE as in High End) Proving to be an enjoyable experience in listening. . - Page 582

post #8716 of 16431
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicholars View Post
 

 

Yes this is why I was saying earlier that someone that was saying the Schiit magni (I think it was?) "drives the HE500 easily but lacks bass impact" is a bit of a contradiction.... I would think this would show that the Magni is actually not powering the HE500 properly because lack of bass impact and control is the most obvious thing you notice when an amp is not good enough for the headphones...

Yep, that was me, and you're probably right. The Magni gets incredibly loud with the HE-500 at 11 o'clock, where I have to turn the volume knob on my Bravo Tube amp to max to get semi-decent volume. The amp, even though it is loud and can get to unbearably loud very easily, might be struggling and adding distortion at that level, but I don't have the test equipment to confirm.

 

Schiit also mentions it can drive the HE-500, but I don't feel that it can drive it with the same refinement that more powerful amps can give, especially regarding bass level and extension.

post #8717 of 16431
Still no science behind why bass would have more impact from a speaker amp, hopefully someone can chime in with that info.
post #8718 of 16431
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethan7000 View Post

Still no science behind why bass would have more impact from a speaker amp, hopefully someone can chime in with that info.

This is an oversimplified attempt from Asrock explaining how they now use more powerful amps with a better S/N ratio and 600ohm headphone support, compared to the traditional ones used before on their new intel motherboards. It takes more power to create sound in the bass range compared to above it.

 

"This frequency response chart is tested under 32 ohm loading to simulate normal headphones. It indicates how traditional audio solution’s frequency response drops drastically at low frequencies, while Purity Sound™ maintains its frequency response and provides better bass with the TI® NE5532 amplifier.
8o-PuritySound115dB-Desc4.jpg"

Edited by bhazard - 10/20/13 at 9:01am
post #8719 of 16431
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethan7000 View Post

Still no science behind why bass would have more impact from a speaker amp, hopefully someone can chime in with that info.
I will make it crystal clear... U want the same kind of bass in the recorded track as in real life right? And with this statement i can tell ya...i didnt need to have a multi watts amp to reach that! Yes the soundstage is a bit less (But thats the headphone to blame..as no headphone can put space out as a speaker does) but when the rest comes close to the original (as did my humble amp) u dont need lots of watts..as they will only give to much bass (even unnatural) compared to the original recording!! We all want that our rig sounds as natural (as original as possible) as possible... If we want bass we go to those beats headphones... Pity people are forgetting its not all about bass what makes music beautiful..its about a balance..

did anyone ever tried to compare a life concert experience to a high quality recording of the same concert on ur he500?? I did that with some friends who regularly visit concerts..and they all have speakers in their house as they didnt believe a headphone was good enough to give that ambiance a life concert gives...and they were surprised how close my rig came... Yes they said it was not same as speakers (expensive ones!) but they were very surprised how good it sounded..ESPECIALLY how real and lookalike the bass and the voices sounded!! Yes BASS! And that was on a puny 1watts headphoneamp! But they said it lacked a bit on soundstage, air and a bit on placement of instruments... But i guess thats a problem with the he500 in general (hey jerg..how is ur latest mod going? Lolz)..

Point: as long the sound u get from ur rig is as close as possible (same is never possible with headphones..no matter how expensive AS they dont reflect sound through the room) to the original should be ur main reason on which u buy ur amp on..not how much watts or what price range..cheap or expensive!

U just need to get the right pairing..IN UR WHOLE RIG..even quality of ur media can be important for ur sound.. I replaced all my media from mp3 320 to lossless or even 24bit LP rips (500mb plus files per track!) to get the best sound possible...and it did improve!!

But hey..some people call me crazy..but i think i am just a perfectionist who tries to get best out of the budget i have.. And i think deep down inside most of us want the same... wink.gif

Ps..i dont believe science can explain this all..as in the end its a personal experience... And what WE THINK sounds good to our ears... wink.gif
Edited by hifimanrookie - 10/20/13 at 9:05am
post #8720 of 16431
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethan7000 View Post

Still no science behind why bass would have more impact from a speaker amp, hopefully someone can chime in with that info.

 

There's two things you have to look at with orthos and amps. First is being able to deliver current and second is the swing. How does the amplifier behave at peaks?

 

Nowadays a lot of amplifiers have ratings that far exceed their true capabilities. Manufacturers can list power outputs in many ways. There is RMS, peak power and continuous power among many. Back in 1970s, the amps had the strictest method of listing power. That is why you'll notice vintage amps with low power ratings but yet they still kick ass. Those 50W marantz vintage amps weren't rated on the cop out peak powers, but rather continuous for an hour performance at a specific load.  Nowadays you'll see peak power ratings on amp listed by manufacturers claiming 120W per channel. Take those amps and put them under the same vintage testing, they'll be cut down severely and end up being less than the vintage amps. 

 

So there is a threshold you have to hit in terms of power, but more importantly, also how long and how well can the amp maintain it the power around peaks. The whole point with speaker amps of moderate power wasn't so we could have blow the drivers out. It was so actually there so you wouldn't have to turn it up. Barely turning the amp to like 20-30% of it's power makes sure that the amp is acting linear. Even if there are a lot of peaks and for some reason the amp doesn't have enough reserve, it will still be done much better than say if the amp was running out at 70%. The amp becomes more non-linear as you increase it's output. This is amplifier 101. This is why with speakers, you always try to pick an amplifier for your speakers that can you don't really have to turn up. When speakers are driven with full control, the music is far more engaging. You don't want it to be sloppy. Same thing goes for HE-500 and Emotiva, and that is why the bass through Emotiva is always so controlled and yet punchy.

 

Now this doesn't mean getting 200W monoblocks hooked up. That's just bat**** crazy, even for the HE-6. Although something like the Emotiva is okay, as it has enough reserve, but yet it I can still get enough control on the volume. This is definitely better in terms of performance and value in comparison to those $200-$500 1-2W amps like Asgard. I don't think people understand the stats fully (Well, sometimes the manufacturers actually purposefully don't specify their ratings) which can further confuse the consumers. Those 1-2W amps can really only deliver the power to planars at peak. That's why with most amps around that power, you'll see that they can get loud, but yet not offer enough bass. They tend to get more non-linear during peaks and sometimes they can't simply even reach it.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audio_power#Power_calculations

post #8721 of 16431

Yes another example of this would be my first stereo system which was a Sony integrated thing rated at 400w I think it was, compared to my 50w RMS rated NAD 326bee it was not even close to being as powerful... because they rate it at the max PMPO rating probably. I expect a lot of the headphone amps use similar tactics to make their amps look better whereas in reality they will not work that well.

post #8722 of 16431

^There's an example, that is the O2. It shows distortion vs. voltage with different loads. More power doesn't equal more bass. It might equal more controlled and better behaved bass. 

 

There's also another factor people tend to forgot: How loud do you listen? 10dB is quite significant, and that can mean a hell of a lot more distortion. Think about peaks of 100mW versus peaks at 1W on the O2 for example. The added distortion would be huge.

 

Hifimanrookies amp might have been able to deliver 1 clean watt without much distortion at all, which would be plenty for the most dynamic classical recordings unless he listen really loud. On the other hand, the O2 is not able to deliver 1 clean watt at all, for example.

 

I'd say 120dB (a watt or 2) of dynamic range without much distortion would be plenty for any sane person.


Edited by davidsh - 10/20/13 at 9:27am
post #8723 of 16431
Quote:
Originally Posted by hifimanrookie View Post


I will make it crystal clear... U want the same kind of bass in the recorded track as in real life right? And with this statement i can tell ya...i didnt need to have a multi watts amp to reach that! Yes the soundstage is a bit less (But thats the headphone to blame..as no headphone can put space out as a speaker does) but when the rest comes close to the original (as did my humble amp) u dont need lots of watts..as they will only give to much bass (even unnatural) compared to the original recording!! We all want that our rig sounds as natural (as original as possible) as possible... If we want bass we go to those beats headphones... Pity people are forgetting its not all about bass what makes music beautiful..its about a balance..

did anyone ever tried to compare a life concert experience to a high quality recording of the same concert on ur he500?? I did that with some friends who regularly visit concerts..and they all have speakers in their house as they didnt believe a headphone was good enough to give that ambiance a life concert gives...and they were surprised how close my rig came... Yes they said it was not same as speakers (expensive ones!) but they were very surprised how good it sounded..ESPECIALLY how real and lookalike the bass and the voices sounded!! Yes BASS! And that was on a puny 1watts headphoneamp! But they said it lacked a bit on soundstage, air and a bit on placement of instruments... But i guess thats a problem with the he500 in general (hey jerg..how is ur latest mod going? Lolz)..

Point: as long the sound u get from ur rig is as close as possible (same is never possible with headphones..no matter how expensive AS they dont reflect sound through the room) to the original should be ur main reason on which u buy ur amp on..not how much watts or what price range..cheap or expensive!

U just need to get the right pairing..IN UR WHOLE RIG..even quality of ur media can be important for ur sound.. I replaced all my media from mp3 320 to lossless or even 24bit LP rips (500mb plus files per track!) to get the best sound possible...and it did improve!!

But hey..some people call me crazy..but i think i am just a perfectionist who tries to get best out of the budget i have.. And i think deep down inside most of us want the same... wink.gif

Ps..i dont believe science can explain this all..as in the end its a personal experience... And what WE THINK sounds good to our ears... wink.gif

 

You are SERIOUSLY mixing and poorly confusing psychoacoustics with power ratings. The reason why even crappy amps can make the headphone sound good is because of how well our Central Auditory Nervous System is at filling in information based on what is there. Even my crappy Sansa Fuze can make it sound good.

 

Using your example of crappy soundstage with poorer amps makes perfect sense. Lower frequency stuff like bass uses different component of hearing & perception than high frequencies. Human hearing switches between Interaural Time Difference (ITD) and Interaural Intensity/Level Difference (IID), depending on which FR region it is dealing with. This is because of the nature of the sound wave and your physiology of outer and inner ear. Just look at the cochlea and you'll see a perfect example.

 

When you talk to someone on a phone, you can recognize it's them and hear everything. Yet if you look at the sonogram, it has cut ridiculous amount of information. Only a limited range gets transmitted in comparison to if the person were actually there beside you and talking to you. Yet, you can still identify the voice perfectly and keep up.

 

Keeping it in laymen terms, your brain can recognize patterns and fill in the gaps and still get a decent picture, but it's still not quite the full picture. Also, this process is quite taxing on your brain. This is why I personally would get fatigued after listening to other amps like O2 or E10 with HE-500. They gave me a lot of the picture, but not the full picture.

 

With better suited amps, you'll notice the soundstage is better. Why?

 

When drivers are driven properly and maintaining the transients (temporal- ITD) as well as amplitude (ILD), you'll see that both soundstage AND bass response is very clear and less fatiguing.

 

Please let me know which "part" science can't explain specifically. If you mean that different people interpret music differently, sure, science can't explain that directly as each person has different ear physiology but more importantly differences in their central auditory nervous system means that people deals with their PERCEPTIONS of the SOUND STIMULUS much differently. Not to mention there are also learned response in preferences.

post #8724 of 16431

Much of the perceived sound stage lies in the treble/higher mids AFAIK.

post #8725 of 16431
Quote:
Originally Posted by davidsh View Post
 

Much of the perceived sound stage lies in the treble/higher mids AFAIK.

 

Yup. It is because of Interaural Time Difference calculations your brain makes to determine the location of the source. This only works with high frequencies due to their short wavelength. This is why with subwoofers doing purely 20 Hz, it's really hard to tell where the bass is coming from. In that case, you'll switch over to Interaural Level Difference, that uses difference in decibel levels between the two ears rather than time to distinguish.

post #8726 of 16431

^Really nice to know

 

Here's some more amp/distortion vs. voltage amp measurements: http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/AllAmpsJuly2013.pdf

post #8727 of 16431
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoom25 View Post

You are SERIOUSLY mixing and poorly confusing psychoacoustics with power ratings. The reason why even crappy amps can make the headphone sound good is because of how well our Central Auditory Nervous System is at filling in information based on what is there. Even my crappy Sansa Fuze can make it sound good.

Using your example of crappy soundstage with poorer amps makes perfect sense. Lower frequency stuff like bass uses different component of hearing & perception than high frequencies. Human hearing switches between Interaural Time Difference (ITD) and Interaural Intensity/Level Difference (IID), depending on which FR region it is dealing with. This is because of the nature of the sound wave and your physiology of outer and inner ear. Just look at the cochlea and you'll see a perfect example.

When you talk to someone on a phone, you can recognize it's them and hear everything. Yet if you look at the sonogram, it has cut ridiculous amount of information. Only a limited range gets transmitted in comparison to if the person were actually there beside you and talking to you. Yet, you can still identify the voice perfectly and keep up.

Keeping it in laymen terms, your brain can recognize patterns and fill in the gaps and still get a decent picture, but it's still not quite the full picture. Also, this process is quite taxing on your brain. This is why I personally would get fatigued after listening to other amps like O2 or E10 with HE-500. They gave me a lot of the picture, but not the full picture.

With better suited amps, you'll notice the soundstage is better. Why?

When drivers are driven properly and maintaining the transients (temporal- ITD) as well as amplitude (ILD), you'll see that both soundstage AND bass response is very clear and less fatiguing.

Please let me know which "part" science can't explain specifically. If you mean that different people interpret music differently, sure, science can't explain that directly as each person has different ear physiology but more importantly differences in their central auditory nervous system means that people deals with their PERCEPTIONS of the SOUND STIMULUS much differently. Not to mention there are also learned response in preferences.
oh f..ck... If i knew this i wouldnt ever order my new blue circle audio amp delivering only a puny 5watts into 50ohm..i could just buy myself a cheap emotiva as that will totally annihilate that BC amp with its multi watts of power redface.gif

Well..only thing i can do now is selling it when i get it and buy me an thunderous emotiva instead, as its almost proven that a multi watts amp will FOR sure totally destroy that expensive headphone amp i am getting as it pumps out several times its poweroutput!..am soooo stupid... As its also proven fact ur brain is an audiophile instrument to fit in the parts ur weak amp is missing..

Thansk for explaining..as its so clear to me my brain must be extreme audiophile as its a master in putting the missing parts into the music that my amp misses..but how about so many people around me.(mass delusion??) .as its only 1watt strong..silly me...and me thinking it was actually a dark destroyer, killing everything when it was compared to many other MORE stronger amps... biggrin.gif

Maybe i can still cancel my order..hope so.. As i will need to recable my custommade balanced cable also biggrin.gif
Edited by hifimanrookie - 10/20/13 at 9:57am
post #8728 of 16431
Quote:
Originally Posted by davidsh View Post
 

^There's an example, that is the O2. It shows distortion vs. voltage with different loads. More power doesn't equal more bass. It might equal more controlled and better behaved bass. 

 

There's also another factor people tend to forgot: How loud do you listen? 10dB is quite significant, and that can mean a hell of a lot more distortion. Think about peaks of 100mW versus peaks at 1W on the O2 for example. The added distortion would be huge.

 

Hifimanrookies amp might have been able to deliver 1 clean watt without much distortion at all, which would be plenty for the most dynamic classical recordings unless he listen really loud. On the other hand, the O2 is not able to deliver 1 clean watt at all, for example.

 

I'd say 120dB (a watt or 2) of dynamic range without much distortion would be plenty for any sane person.

 

120db is the same volume as a jet engine @ 20m so that would be enough to give you hearing damage pretty fast....

post #8729 of 16431

^Yeah, but peaks in dynamic recordings can indeed go pretty high. 120 dB is what hifiman/audeze recommends, and it is probably just to be sure the amp will work well anyway.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by hifimanrookie View Post

oh f..ck... If i knew this i wouldnt ever order my new blue circle audio amp delivering only a puny 5watts into 50ohm..i could just buy myself a cheap emotiva!

Well..only thing i can do now is selling it when i get it and buy me an thunderous emotiva instead, as its proven that a multi watts amp will FOR sure totally destroy that expensive headphone amp i am getting an it pumps out several times its poweroutput!..am soooo stupid... Thansk for explaining..thansk for explaining the brain thingie...as it is so playing wit me.. biggrin.gif

Nobody talked about the emotiva or said power is everything. Power with low distortion (not only THD) is supposedly everything. Just... please don't, this isn't very constructive.


Edited by davidsh - 10/20/13 at 9:55am
post #8730 of 16431
Quote:
Originally Posted by hifimanrookie View Post


oh f..ck... If i knew this i wouldnt ever order my new blue circle audio amp delivering only a puny 5watts into 50ohm..i could just buy myself a cheap emotiva!

Well..only thing i can do now is selling it when i get it and buy me an thunderous emotiva instead, as its proven that a multi watts amp will FOR sure totally destroy that expensive headphone amp i am getting an it pumps out several times its poweroutput!..am soooo stupid... Thansk for explaining..thansk for explaining the brain thingie...as it is so playing wit me.. biggrin.gif

 

I'm consistently amazed by your ability to understand and make connections based on what was actually said.

 

Best of luck with your blue circle jerk amp.  


Edited by Zoom25 - 10/20/13 at 9:56am
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