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So my second pair of LCD-2 Cracked again, need advice for alternate high-end headphones - Page 2

post #16 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by fred43 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post

The HD650 is not a total let down after the LCD-2. IMHO it's the LCD-2 that's diminished when the HD650 is heard through a system that has good synergy with it. The Bifrost/Lyr combo the OP owns is such a rig.

 

So odd. I take it from your signature that you own and have lived with the equipment you're talking about.

 

I don't feel strongly about most gear I've owned or heard, except for the LCD-2. I simply hear more with it. More subtlety, easier to follow lyrics, easier to hear into a mix, but unforced at the same time. Heard it said that the Sennheisers need a good amp to really come alive, but always thought they are meant to have synergy with the Benchmark DAC1 that I own.


Sorry for the ambiguity but I was not referring to the LCD-2's technical superiority over the HD650. That goes without saying. I don't listen to music to pick apart details. What the HD650 presents is more intangible. It's a level of engagement that varies with system synergy and that the LCD-2 fails to match... IMO/E, YMMV, etc. 

 

post #17 of 39

When I tried the HD650/700/800 @ CES vs HE-400/500/6, the differences were obvious despite the loud atmosphere. Frankly, all the Senns sounded severely awesome to me in varying degrees depending on the model...but the planars....simply took my breath away. Trying the HD800 vs LCD-2 on wa6se @ T.H.E. Show's Woo booth I was left w/ the same impression. HD800 = wow nice; LCD-2 = OMFG. Speaking just for myself obviously, planars > dynamics. 

post #18 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by weipim View Post

Hi all, although the title might be about audez'e, I really don't want to talk about this company in my thread. Since the lcd-2 is not working out for me ( second pair cracked), I need advice for something around it.

 

The candidates i'm considering: sennheiser hd-650, hd-600, hifiman he-500 he-400 and he-6

I already have Denon d7000 and k701

 

Since you own a D7000, have you considered sending it to Mark Lawton to turn into an LA7000? The D7000 has WAY more performance potential than is realized by the stock version. The LA7000 is probably the ultimate sealed headphone short of an MDR-R10. The HE-500 would be a good choice. I'm not sure that your amp is enough for an HE-6. That thing needs just crazy amounts of power - think Dark Star or a 100 watt speaker amp.

 

Any chance you'd consider Stax? SR-507 and SRM-323S maybe?
 

 

post #19 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post

The HD650 is not a total let down after the LCD-2. IMHO it's the LCD-2 that's diminished when the HD650 is heard through a system that has good synergy with it. The Bifrost/Lyr combo the OP owns is such a rig.



The 650, despite a similar balance, is quite different to the LCD-2 (Rev1 in my case). The 650 has a very homogenous sound. It's all of a piece, with nothing sticking out---bass, treble or mid. It's a wodge of sound, and I mean that in the best sense. And it's basically honest in its sound, if not very resolving. The LCD-2, on the other hand, is resolving. It separates the elements of the music and presents them to you as interwoven strands, which after the 650 can be a little disconcerting. However, it is more accurate. You may not prefer it, and no law says you have to, but it's closer to the definition of hi-fi, and thus worth the money.

 

That said, the 650 is a very decent choice and will give you 80% of the musical information for a bargain price.    

post #20 of 39


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post



The 650, despite a similar balance, is quite different to the LCD-2 (Rev1 in my case). The 650 has a very homogenous sound. It's all of a piece, with nothing sticking out---bass, treble or mid. It's a wodge of sound, and I mean that in the best sense. And it's basically honest in its sound, if not very resolving. The LCD-2, on the other hand, is resolving. It separates the elements of the music and presents them to you as interwoven strands, which after the 650 can be a little disconcerting. However, it is more accurate. You may not prefer it, and no law says you have to, but it's closer to the definition of hi-fi, and thus worth the money.

 

That said, the 650 is a very decent choice and will give you 80% of the musical information for a bargain price.    


My experience was the opposite. While I found the HD650 laid-back in the upper-mids and treble, I felt it was an extremely resolving headphone in terms of being able to extract low level information. The LCD2 offered much more clarity, but it sounded as if some of the low level details got lost, particularly with the r1. This is with running both headphones balanced from my setup. YMMV.

 

To the OP: go out and buy both (or three including the HE500) to try for yourself. Keep the one you like best and return the others.


Edited by purrin - 2/28/12 at 12:07pm
post #21 of 39

My experience with HD650 (recabled with balanced cardas cable) is also that it is a highly resolving headphone with an outstanding tonal balance on my WA22 (TS7236/TS or NU 6F8G/Mullard GZ34 or 33).  I do not feel HD650 is slow.  On a resolving and powerful amp HD650 is as enjoyable as my HD800 and 007 MK 1, although each presents a different sound signature.  I have not yet heard an LCD or HE500. 

post #22 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by weipim View Post

Hi all, although the title might be about audez'e, I really don't want to talk about this company in my thread. Since the lcd-2 is not working out for me ( second pair cracked), I need advice for something around it.

 

The candidates i'm considering: sennheiser hd-650, hd-600, hifiman he-500 he-400 and he-6

I already have Denon d7000 and k701

 

My rig:

denon DCD-1650AR

Schiit bifrost (for pchifi)

Schiit Lyr

 

Music I'm listening to:

Classical(60%)

Femal vocal(20%)

pure music, like saxophone tributes etc(15%)

anything else(5%)

 

Thanks to y'all in advance


Since we have similar music preferences, I recommend the HD600 over the HD650. Rock may be better suited for HD650 but classical is much better on the HD600. The LCD-2 is better than the HD650 imo and I can't comment on the Hifimans as I have never heard them.

 

post #23 of 39


Just add a little bit more information to what I said before.  I had both HD600 and AKG 501 (check my feedbacks) until the beginning of this month when I found the set up (see below) that showed me HD650 is more resolving and has a better sound stage compared to either of the two.  I recommend a read of Mike Ting's reviews of HE500, HD650 and HD600 at www.headfonia.com.  I agree with his assessment of HD650 and his comparison of 650 with HE500 and HD600.  I hope I will have a chance to hear a LCD in the near future.  

Quote:
Originally Posted by cacatalysis View Post

My experience with HD650 (recabled with balanced cardas cable) is also that it is a highly resolving headphone with an outstanding tonal balance on my WA22 (TS7236/TS or NU 6F8G/Mullard GZ34 or 33).  I do not feel HD650 is slow.  On a resolving and powerful amp HD650 is as enjoyable as my HD800 and 007 MK 1, although each presents a different sound signature.  I have not yet heard an LCD or HE500. 



 

post #24 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by purrin 


My experience was the opposite. While I found the HD650 laid-back in the upper-mids and treble, I felt it was an extremely resolving headphone in terms of being able to extract low level information. The LCD2 offered much more clarity, but it sounded as if some of the low level details got lost, particularly with the r1. This is with running both headphones balanced from my setup. YMMV.

 

 

 

I agree that the 650 is laid back in the upper mids and treble, though still very naturally balanced. I'm simply saying that it doesn't separate the strands of the music as clearly as the LCD-2. Even if you can still hear those strands. they're not separated as well. It's more of a wodge of sound, as I said.

post #25 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post

The 650, despite a similar balance, is quite different to the LCD-2 (Rev1 in my case). The 650 has a very homogenous sound. It's all of a piece, with nothing sticking out---bass, treble or mid. It's a wodge of sound, and I mean that in the best sense. And it's basically honest in its sound, if not very resolving. The LCD-2, on the other hand, is resolving. It separates the elements of the music and presents them to you as interwoven strands, which after the 650 can be a little disconcerting. However, it is more accurate. You may not prefer it, and no law says you have to, but it's closer to the definition of hi-fi, and thus worth the money.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by purrin View Post


My experience was the opposite. While I found the HD650 laid-back in the upper-mids and treble, I felt it was an extremely resolving headphone in terms of being able to extract low level information. The LCD2 offered much more clarity, but it sounded as if some of the low level details got lost, particularly with the r1. This is with running both headphones balanced from my setup. YMMV.

 

Unsurprisingly I'm with pp312 on this. In fact, his post describes exactly how I feel about my copies of the LCD-2 (rev 1) and HD-650, currently driven from a Bryston BP-25 amp and Metrum Octave DAC. As I've said elsewhere, this is (pretty much the only) one thing I have strong feelings about and, while one may prefer one or the other, I'm puzzled there seems to be disagreement on what I think of as clear technical merits in favour of the LCD-2.

 

Can we agree that the LCD-2 stages better than the HD-650? I find performers occupy a wider and less precise space with the HD-650. One of my first impressions of the LCD-2 was how much narrower and hence somewhat smaller each performer sounded, something that was a bit disconcerting and didn't necessarily seem better on the very first listen. However I think this goes hand in hand with the increase in resolution that pp312 describes, which I ultimately like. The HD-650 blurs the soundstage by comparison and that makes it harder for me to distinguish low level details in a mix.

 

Or is the music we listen to a deciding factor? I currently enjoy mostly complex rock and pop recordings. I would concede that the LCD-2 (rev 1) in it's stock form can sound downright muffled with classical records. I counteract that with an equalizer. In fact I use the equalizer all the time and my comments ultimately apply with that in the chain, though I find the midband resolution of the LCD-2 quite independent of it. Still, I do find the LCD-2 does not always have the same advantage with classical music, especially when it's recorded in a big hall with lots of reverb like, for example, John Williams seems to favour for his film scores.

 

There are a number of other records where I feel the LCD-2 has not added anything over the HD-650 or my speakers, though it didn't make them sound worse either. These are records that, though not personal favorites, sound particularly good on my speakers. When listening with the LCD-2 I typically find their recording quality a bit homogenized and the arrangements usually simpler. Turned out there wasn't anything more going on that the speakers couldn't already resolve.

post #26 of 39

No, I can't agree that the LCD-2 stages better than the HD650. I actually prefer the extra width rendered by the HD650. I concede that depth is more compressed as it falls short of the clarity and resolve of the LCD-2, but the narrower horizontal stage of the LCD-2 presents a funnelled, and ultimately less coherent image to my (perhaps broken) ears. eek.gif It's like all the musicians are lined up single file in front of you, as opposed to spread out from left to right. Details within the stereo width of the HD650 may not be resolved with the same clarity, but that "wodge of sound" strangely sounds more natural to me.

 

popcorn.gif

post #27 of 39

To be clear, I wasn't talking about the width of the stage as a whole, but the width of each perfomer, which I feel is more narrowly delineated within the stage with the LCD-2. Still, I think we must basically be talking about the same thing and you prefer the HD650. Noted.

To me the (equalized) LCD-2 is an advance that I haven't heard with other (cheaper) equipment, though that's partly for lack of experience. It has previously been said that the HD650 gets you 80% to the LCD-2. In my case I seem to have found something in the LCD-2 that I value much more than other people and the HD650 gets nowhere near it. Like only 40% maybe. It's not merely the soundstage, by the way, it's the quality of voices, the ease of understanding lyrics, the ability to distinguish the tonality of different instruments, the general subtlety that makes performances sound more live than the relatively homogenized sound of the HD650. Are my ears better or are they worse than others? Do they only respond to the LCD-2 or to orthodynamics, perhaps? Am I missing the point of where the HD650 is better instead? I don't know.

The curve of diminishing returns kicks in earlier for me with other equipment. I bought the Apex Peak / Volcano with the Shuguang tube, ran it in for a week, but returned it, because I couldn't tell it from my all solid-state Bryston amp. That's admittedly in the same price bracket, but I am also ambivalent about the DACs I own, ranging from €250 to €1,000. The jury is still out on the Metrum for possible lack of a really good digital feed, but basically DACs sound much the same to me.

So I thought the LCD-2 is really special, but how do you talk about this stuff when you're not sure whether others hear what you do? Whether they do hear it, but attach value and significance merely to other things? Whether the language we use even means the same to others?

This is probably not an on point discussion other than to highlight the difficulty of recommending alternate headphones. Like purrin says, there's no substitute for auditioning. Both true and infuriating.


Edited by fred43 - 2/28/12 at 8:11pm
post #28 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by fred43 View Post

[...]

This is probably not an on point discussion other than to highlight the difficulty of recommending alternate headphones. Like purrin says, there's no substitute for auditioning. Both true and infuriating.

 

Agreed. This point is the reason I offered an alternate view to your take that the HD650 is a let down after the LCD-2. I concede that my modest gear may be limiting the LCD-2, but I find the notion of the HD650 being 40% of the LCD-2 absurd. Your opinion, and it goes without saying you're entitled to it. My view is that there may be some hyperbole here.

post #29 of 39
Thread Starter 

Hey guys, thanks to all of your inputs, i feel very honored for having so many people helping me out. I finally picked the 650 hd, not because it is better than lcd-2 but because for 350 I think it will be a good complement/intermediation to my current and future rig. 

post #30 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by weipim View Post

Hey guys, thanks to all of your inputs, i feel very honored for having so many people helping me out. I finally picked the 650 hd, not because it is better than lcd-2 but because for 350 I think it will be a good complement/intermediation to my current and future rig. 



Victory! wink.gif Let us know how you find them after you've acclimatised.


Edited by olor1n - 2/28/12 at 8:32pm
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