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New Hifiman Headphone HE-400 is out - Page 357

post #5341 of 6020
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post

 

I have a feeling that the superb subbass of Audezes might be due to the great seal that its adhered pads have with the head. This is evident because if I run a 25 Hz sinewave tone through the HE400s, it responds well, but if I even lift the cups off my ears by a few millimetres, the tone suddenly disappears. This might mean that if the Hifiman pads are sealed better, like how Audeze does their pads, the subbass extension will be close~equal.

based on the FR graphs alone, the LCD's do have a better response in the far sub-bass region.  i've only demoed the LCD2's and although i feel they sounded slightly better overall than my HE400's if we factor price into it the 400's are drastically superior!

 

i do agree with you on the "seal" of the cups...i also notice that positioning on my head can make quite a difference in the sound.  i've ordered some velour pads to try (i'm using the pleather that came with) but overall i'm not dissatisfied at all with the bass from my 400's,

 

IMO in this level of headphone I don't want a "basshead" can i want good response over the spectrum, which i strongly feel the 400's are providing...

post #5342 of 6020

^^ I would agree with you here. The lcd is truly special in terms of it's bass reproduction, but it comes at a rather special price. For my money, the he400 delivers sub bass impact and texture that has no equal at this price point. 

 

And the velours pads are a must for this hp. If you are formulating your opinion of them based on the pleather pads, then please give them a listen with the velours. You might be surprised.  wink.gif

post #5343 of 6020

IS anyone using vinyl as a source? How does it compare to using FLAC files on a PC?


Edited by trunolimit - 11/9/12 at 8:18pm
post #5344 of 6020
Quote:
Originally Posted by trunolimit View Post

IS anyone using vinyl as a source? How does it compare to using FLAC files on a PC?

Way different ball game there. Let's just say with the ideal setup CD's are not going to hold a candle to a record.

post #5345 of 6020
Quote:
Originally Posted by RushNerd View Post

Way different ball game there. Let's just say with the ideal setup CD's are not going to hold a candle to a record.

Do you think the he-400 are suited for vinyl or would I be better of with the hd-650? Is that a dumb question? I guess either would do right?
post #5346 of 6020
Quote:
Originally Posted by trunolimit View Post


Do you think the he-400 are suited for vinyl or would I be better of with the hd-650? Is that a dumb question? I guess either would do right?

 

They're very different headphones, in my experience, and I'd say that whether you're using vinyl or FLAC source material would be one of the lesser considerations.  I posted this in the other HE400 thread after listening to both:

 

 

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

 

 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragunov-21 View Post

So, HE400 vs HD650, FLAC through a Fuze LOD and an O2, trying to put as many objective relative comments and as few ambiguous words in there as this arena allows.

 

I found that what the 400 does, it does very well, and that's clarity, detail and separation.  When you have a lot of brass and deep strings going on in an orchestral piece, the HD650 tended to let them blur out the finer-bodied instruments like flutes, clarinets and smaller strings, very slightly.  Their timbre could still be heard, but had to be concentrated on somewhat.  The HE400 on the other hand, was super-clear, with the texture of the finer instruments immediately apparent.  Unfortunately the body of the deeper instruments just wasn't there; the bass was, and it was very clear, but there was something missing (the same something that resulted in the very slight blurring with the HD650).  

 

An example of this is the guitar in the background of this song at 1:20.  It's there on every decent 'phone I have, but it's so immediately apparent on the HE400s.  Whether or not this is a good thing will depend on whether your listening style requires it or whether having detail thrust at you will cause you to focus on it at the expense of everything else.

 

When it comes to air and clarity , I think they were improved by the fact that the HE400s are more open than the 650s; the HE400 drivers (not pads) seem to cause less isolation of outside noise, which I think decreases the distinction between sound that's coming from the drivers and ambient sound.  This was the case both with music playing, and with the headphones silent.

 

When it came to less populated tracks and tracks without many deep instruments, I felt that the 650 outshone the 400.  The 400's emphasis on treble gave the impression of detail and texture, but that detail/texture was still present through the 650s, just not thrown in your face.  The smooth texture of the mids (and I hesitate to use terms like bass, mids and treble anymore because I realise I don't know exactly what falls where) was so valuable in my enjoyment of these pieces and were exactly what I was hoping for in a headphone, coming from the UM3X.  The flute at :40 in the video below is a prime example of something that was euphoric through the HD650s and relatively empty through the HE400s.  The same was true for female vocal, with a great example being the harmonising at 2:28 in the video above (which gets butchered by youtube's compression anyway, but even so)

 

 
My bass/I-don't-give-a-crap-about-timbre tracks were from Avenged Sevenfold's "City of Evil" and The Prodigy's "Invaders Must Die".  While the 400 has better extension down low, I didn't miss it while listening to the 650s, and I did miss a bit of impact that I felt was lost in the mid-bass when listening to the HE400s.  Additionally, these songs are filled with crashing symbals and other reasonably harsh sounds.  I can barely listen to them at moderate to high listening volumes with the 400s, let alone enjoy them.  I found the 650s to smooth out the harshness without dulling them.
 
Tracks incorporating a bit of both (textured acoustic instruments and  synths/heavy bass)from artists like Shpongle and Infected Mushroom were more enjoyable on the HD650.  The airiness, clarity and minute details aren't worth much, because of the recording and style of music.
 
A few random things
 
  • Build quality.  The HiFiMans look and feel like a top-of-the-line 'phone that's lacking a bit of polish and budget.  Funny, because that's pretty much what they are.  The HD650s are light and plasticky and feel like a peripheral, rather than a piece of equipment in their own right.  They don't look very durable (when it comes to abuse, not longevity) and the fit/finish is slightly below what I'd have expected from a ~$400 phone, given what I've seen of HiFiMan and Shure's offerings at this price point.
  • Price.  I don't know what the going rate is for HD650s in the rest of the world, but in Australia I'm looking at $350 online and $480 local, which is the maximum I could justify on a headphone.  Coming from my UM3Xs, it's not a matter of which costs less, but whether the HE400 has anything to offer over what I currently own.  While it has fantastic qualities for 20% of my music library, the sound sig is unusable for most of it, so it doesn't.  The HD650 does, and doesn't give a huge lot up when looking at the HE400s qualities in isolation, either.
  • Weight.  As I said a bit earlier, the HE400 gives the impression of quality in the same way a 1911 does compared to a Glock (for the shooters amongst use).  That is to say, it is not just solid and inflexible, but also heavy, which may or may not be a bad thing for you.
 
Hopefully that helps anyone who's considering the 400s and knows what sound they like.
 

 


Edited by Dragunov-21 - 11/10/12 at 12:04am
post #5347 of 6020
Quote:
Originally Posted by trunolimit View Post


Do you think the he-400 are suited for vinyl or would I be better of with the hd-650? Is that a dumb question? I guess either would do right?

 

I own both hp's but do not have a vinyl setup. Many of the guys on the hd650 thread do and highly recommend it for vinyl. 

post #5348 of 6020
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post

 

I have a feeling that the superb subbass of Audezes might be due to the great seal that its adhered pads have with the head. This is evident because if I run a 25 Hz sinewave tone through the HE400s, it responds well, but if I even lift the cups off my ears by a few millimetres, the tone suddenly disappears. This might mean that if the Hifiman pads are sealed better, like how Audeze does their pads, the subbass extension will be close~equal.

You should go back and edit your post in the LCD-3 so everything is up to snuff.

post #5349 of 6020

I think the LCD-2's are the clearly superior headphone; I wouldn't say there is a metric by which you can say that the HE-400 is better than the LCD-2. I had a chance to listen to the HE-400 again recently after having owned the LCD-2 for a few months and don't regret having spend 2.5x the money on the LCD-2s and selling the HE-400. How much it is superior is however subjective.

 

The HE-400 definitely SOUNDS better than it costs. However, I can't help but fault HiFiMAN for it's presentation, it just doesn't feel luxurious. I have said this before (some disagree) but I think that if it wants to garner "widespread" acclaim it needs to look the part. There is nothing wrong with plastic, but the glossy plastic used in the HE series just somehow comes off as being cheap. Likewise the headband leaves much to be desired. 

 

Mind you I am not saying that the HE-400 is a bad headphone in any way or that it is not worth the money, but I am ultimately left wondering if they were finished better if people would be willing to pay $200 more for them.

 

(Mind you the LCD-2 isn't exactly a marvel of engineering, but the finish and choice of materials is quite nice. Most high end headphones even if not objectively aesthetically have an endearing feel and choice of materials.)

post #5350 of 6020

I'm a sucker for weight.  The robust weight alone of the HE-400 made me think of it as well presented.  I do agree about the plastic though, but then again Sennheiser uses plastic for all of its offerings.

post #5351 of 6020
Quote:
Originally Posted by TMRaven View Post

I'm a sucker for weight.  The robust weight alone of the HE-400 made me think of it as well presented.  I do agree about the plastic though, but then again Sennheiser uses plastic for all of its offerings.

Heh yeah, I could not wear LCD2s for more than 5 mins when I auditioned them, a combination of the weight and the weird clamp that just ended up hurting both the tip of my head and my jaws, and adjusting it did nothing to improve

post #5352 of 6020
Quote:
Originally Posted by TickleMeElmo View Post

I think the LCD-2's are the clearly superior headphone; I wouldn't say there is a metric by which you can say that the HE-400 is better than the LCD-2. I had a chance to listen to the HE-400 again recently after having owned the LCD-2 for a few months and don't regret having spend 2.5x the money on the LCD-2s and selling the HE-400. How much it is superior is however subjective.

 

The HE-400 definitely SOUNDS better than it costs. However, I can't help but fault HiFiMAN for it's presentation, it just doesn't feel luxurious. I have said this before (some disagree) but I think that if it wants to garner "widespread" acclaim it needs to look the part. There is nothing wrong with plastic, but the glossy plastic used in the HE series just somehow comes off as being cheap. Likewise the headband leaves much to be desired. 

 

Mind you I am not saying that the HE-400 is a bad headphone in any way or that it is not worth the money, but I am ultimately left wondering if they were finished better if people would be willing to pay $200 more for them.

 

(Mind you the LCD-2 isn't exactly a marvel of engineering, but the finish and choice of materials is quite nice. Most high end headphones even if not objectively aesthetically have an endearing feel and choice of materials.)

 

I think the HE400 headband is much better than when they first starting offering headphones. The HE400 headband looks much better than my HE6 one but there's always room for improvement. The LCD-2 may look and feel nice but it also had it's share of problems and worse than the ones that Hifiman has had but they are both headed in the right direction. 

post #5353 of 6020
Quote:
Originally Posted by TickleMeElmo View Post

I think the LCD-2's are the clearly superior headphone; I wouldn't say there is a metric by which you can say that the HE-400 is better than the LCD-2. I had a chance to listen to the HE-400 again recently after having owned the LCD-2 for a few months and don't regret having spend 2.5x the money on the LCD-2s and selling the HE-400. How much it is superior is however subjective.

 

 

 

agreed the LCD2 is superior, it's my favorite ever demoed can and in a different class altogether than the he400 (summit fi vs. hi fi...?) 

 

but..there certainly is a metric to compare them; the LCD2 costs more then 2x, plus REQUIRES high end amplification, plus a fairly dedicated listening post.  HUGE $ difference...and a certain "listening restriction"

 

the he400 sounds great for the $, can run acceptably with a portable amp, and i therefore can use them all over my house.  i will not sell my 400's when i can finally swing the LCD2-they are completely different in intended use.

post #5354 of 6020
Quote:
Originally Posted by rawrster View Post

 

I think the HE400 headband is much better than when they first starting offering headphones. The HE400 headband looks much better than my HE6 one but there's always room for improvement. The LCD-2 may look and feel nice but it also had it's share of problems and worse than the ones that Hifiman has had but they are both headed in the right direction. 

If only the used X3 the foam inside the headband it would be perfect, no idea how they let it pass as-is. The aftermarket comfort strap completely solves the problem though, it actually makes it more 650 like snug without the clamp.

post #5355 of 6020

Yeah I got the aftermarket headband today, I'm liking it so far. While I've never felt pressure on the top of my head to be a problem, having that extra space there allows for the clamp to reduce.

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