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Wood upgrade of Baby Orpheus HE 60 to the Orpheus HE 90 housing.

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 

Stage I.


1. List of materials and consumed time:



Thin Plywood for Model Making 2 mm
Cheese head screw  M2 8 mm
Cheese head screw  M2 5 mm
Standard screw fi ca. 2 mm
Push-Pins fi ca. 3mm

Anti Vibration Washers
Universal Steel Mesh Car speaker grill

Fisher 105 genuine plug HE90

Oepheus HE90 Headband with caps

Sennheiser HE60 O-ring

Sennheiser HE60 Suspension

Sennheiser HE60 Cable w/o plug

Sennheiser HE60 Transducers



2. Cogitation and design = 10 hours


3. Execution = 10 hours


4. Necessary tools: Dremel + cutting and grinding tools, precise screwdrivers, side-cutting nippers and soldering iron.


5. Aim: I decided to give another chance to the little Orpheus. Some time ago I bought NOS transducers to modify the Baby Orpheus HE60. I knew how they worked and I wasn’t absolutely convinced by them. There are plenty of people around the world who are fascinated with HE60 and they often preferred them to Omega.


Why am I doing this? Well it is a little bit of fun, and I am also a curious person. Therefore I decided to modify and replace the drivers of baby Orpheus and transplant them into the Orpheus HE90. Theoretically, such a solution should surpass ubiquitous, unappealing plastic that was used in HE60 by Sennheiser. The benefits of Precious wood with an extremely comfortable headband, earcaps and earpads from the Orpheus HE90 will enhance the overall experience when listening to all kinds of music.



Stage II.


Execution: I recorded the entire process in the form of a ‘step by step’ with photographs. Design works, individual elements and stages of the modification have been recorded accurately.


Without question many photographs will speak for themselves and sometimes comment can be deemed as unnecessary. I would like to draw your attention to the method of the driver installation. This was the most important and the most complicated part of the whole venture. To some extent I based my procedure on the original Sennheiser’s concept. I even tried to buy part of the casing in Sennheiser Germany; unfortunately, parts of the Orpheus headphones are just not freely available anymore.


It is possible to buy rubber elements, pads, headband pads but elements of casing are extremely difficult to source, even in the second hand market. The only choice left was DIY. I did it as follows: I made four Ø1,5 mm holes in plywood. The holes formed 70 mm x 50 mm square. Using two-element push pins designed for fixing computer fans, I screwed down a half of that pin on the side of the suspension of membranes.


In this way, the basis of that pin and accurately fixed screws ensured four stable mini-columns. The driver was placed between these columns. Rubber dampers, which secure an o-ring, were placed on these pins (mini-columns). After installation, I cut them down and for a better aesthetic look I plugged them using the remaining element of the set. The seat of drivers is soft but at the same time it ensures a secure grip in the earcap.


I varnished all extra wooden elements and plugs black. The grid that shields the driver on the ear side was made of the protective frame of a loudspeaker designed for a car.  The mesh is similar to the original one of HE60. All used materials and conducted actions were supposed to reflect the workmanship perfection of Orpheus casing. Executing all modifications, I kept the aesthetic elements I desired firmly placed centerstage in my mind. Thus I tried to execute all changes accordingly to the highest quality of Sennheiser’s design.



Stage III.


The final effect: I didn’t expect such a noticeable improvement of the sound. I do not attribute this success to myself; it is rather a result of the surrounding area in which the driver was placed. It is confirmed that a proper casing, its acoustic chamber, perfect headband and earpads result in the sound taking on new dynamics and exuberance. It is important to mention that the more comfortable the environment, the longer you can listen without unnecessary movement and adjustment. All facets of the audio interplay were improved, especially the sound stage, bass response and acoustic definition. You certainly do not experience such dramatic audio nirvana in the plain plastic version HE60.


It goes without saying that it won’t still compete with Orpheus; however, the improved version has now more in common with high quality headphones. I do not exclude the possibility of modifying the STAX drivers SR-507. If bass improvement of the 507 is enhanced in such a manner, it is certainly worth dedicating the time.








Photos - part 1 (stage I.)



HE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (0).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (1).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (2).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (3).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (4).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (5).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (6).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (7).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (8).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (9).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (10).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (11).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (12).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (13).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (14).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (15).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (16).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.1.F. (17).JPG






Photos - part 2 (stage II.)





HE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.1.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.2.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.3.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.4.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.5.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.6.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.7.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.8.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.9.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.10.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.11.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.12.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.13.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.14.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.15.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.16.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.17.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.18.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.19.jpgHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.20.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.21.jpgHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.22.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.23.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.24.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.25.jpgHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.28.jpgHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.26.JPGHE60 in HE90. etap.2.F.27.jpg






Photos - part 3 (stage III.)




HE60 in HE90.etap.3.F. (0).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.3.F. (1).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.3.F. (2).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.3.F. (3).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.3.F. (4).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.3.F. (5).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.3.F.(6).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.3.F.(7).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.3.F.(8).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.3.F.(9).JPGHE60 in HE90.etap.3.F.(10).JPG




post #2 of 21

thats a scary good facsimile!  remind me not to buy an HE90 from you ;) 

post #3 of 21

Wow!!! Great job.

post #4 of 21

very nice

post #5 of 21

Very nice and detailed. Any change in sound?

post #6 of 21

That's a brilliant idea Wiktor.  If there was one thing I'd change it would be how you secure the drivers.  In the HE60 they are sandwiched between the two pieces of the housing with rubber pieces on each side providing the baffle seal.  I've experimented with this a bit and you can get improvements by providing a better foundation for the drivers.  The same applies to all electrostatics and is one of the major improvements of the SR-507 and why the SR-Omega wasn't as good as it could have been. 


There is also one more thing, feel free to reverse the Sennheiser wiring of the HE60.  The stock setup has the drivers running out of absolute phase which makes no sense to me so I always wire them as I would a Stax headphone (i.e. + next to the ear). 

post #7 of 21

Great stuff Wiktor!!

post #8 of 21

Epic stuff... (where that Orpheus smiley?!)

post #9 of 21


         popcorn.gif               L3000.gif


Edited by wink - 5/8/11 at 7:39pm
post #10 of 21


Originally Posted by Amarphael View Post

Epic stuff... (where that Orpheus smiley?!)

Could this work? :D




Or maybe:





post #11 of 21

Wow!  That's the best DIY I have seen in a long time.  Thanks for sharing.


Wachara C.

post #12 of 21

Wow - incredible work & documentation! 


Thank you for sharing your extensive efforts. Please continue to post your progress & findings.

post #13 of 21

Great job Wiktor :-)

post #14 of 21

Nice Omega watch.  biggrin.gif

post #15 of 21

this is stunning, do you work for senn?

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