Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › **Hifiman HE-400 Impressions and Discussion Thread**
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

**Hifiman HE-400 Impressions and Discussion Thread** - Page 1322

post #19816 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrMateoHead View Post
 

I'd like to get a good, cheap SPL meter and walk around with it all day + apply it to my headphones and home theater. Anyone know a good cheap one that does dBA and dBC weighting as well?

 

Using an App and my Nexus I am usually reaching uncomfortable @ 60-70 dB . Ambient noise is somewhere around 30-34 dB. I have no idea how accurate the Nexus or the app are (does the mic REALLY pick up 20 hz to 20 khz?), and don't yet have another tool to compare results. But I've turned up the headphones to a high level and jammed the mic next to the cup and also recorded about 60-70 dB. So would tend to believe, very much, that 80 dB is the threshold of pain and that the loudest I can usually stand to go to for short periods is 70 dB+music peaks.

 

Hence taking all these measurements at 90 dB and 100 dB is, to me, starting to look like dinging a Chevy Impala because it didn't handle like a Corvette at 100 mph. It is great to have "headroom" given the dynamics of music, but I would like to see measurements at 60, 70, and 80 dB as well as those would better capture my typical comfortable listening level.

 

I am getting older myself, but I can still hardly stand cities - subways, traffic, Airplanes. I go home with my voice hoarse from shout-talking all day. I have some slight hearing damage in my left ear from a non-music related issue, but still pick out lots of detail and am a better stereo "tuner" than most people I meet. Chalk that up to experimenting, reading, and paying attention for a lot of years.

 

Like you, perhaps, I have never found the HE-400 particularly "colored", and in fact find them quite neutral (perhaps a tad bass light / thin sounding initially), though the founder of the company claims to have sought an "American" (JBL) sound. That would translate as colored. Did he succeed? EQ'd+modded pleathers, I would say that they sound amazing more often than not and even if they are colored it is hardly noticeable or distracting. But as an owner of JBL speakers, I would say that Fang did get the "California sound" about right - somewhat subdued upper midrange coupled to a fairly bright treble (yet with pleathers, the bass is warm with excellent texture as opposed to "boomy" warm). My Pioneer speakers measure essentially flat and a major difference is the superior imaging / staging and always recognizable midrange. In fact, a little more bass punch and treble would actually be nice once in awhile. But I would call them warm and detailed. Maybe Apples to Oranges comparing headphones to speakers but, I find that the Pioneers, while presenting a more accurate tonal balance overall, don't make me feel as if the HE-400 is missing anything particularly critical. Quite the opposite. The speed of the planar drivers keeps offering up a sense of realism at times which is just surprising and satisfying over and over again.

 

Maybe someday I'll get some Maggies!


Get the Maggies, I had some MG-2B's back in college (late 70's) and they were great.  Really need a dedicated room for them and they are not very efficient so a good class A amp helps (Mark Levinson ML-20's, Harmon Kardon Citation XX, Nakamichi & SAE Preamp).  Sold the MG-2b's when I got married and really missed them so after I got divorced in 1998 got back into listening to music again and got a pair of 1.6's a few year ago and currently have them in storage since I moved into a 1 bedroom condo.  As soon as my girlfriend and I move to a 2 bedroom all my audio gear in storage is coming back out and 1 bedroom will be sound room.  Might not be using headphones much after that, lol.

post #19817 of 19828

Greetings all,

 

I got some challenging questions about the HE-400, Sources, DAC's and AMP's, hope you guys are up for it. Thanks.

 

Alright my current setup is really not to great, but I really do enjoy it. That being said I'm looking for a way to get the most out of my next purchase the HE-400's without spending much. This is my current  setup

Source materiel is mainly Lossless (FLAC) and the occasional Lossy (MP3 320kbps) my DAC is built into my motherboard and is the Cirrus Logic CS4398 DAC connected with an 3.5mm to cable into my Schiit Vali amp which is a pleasure to listen to with my DT990 pro's as it reduces the harshness of the highs on it, and makes it sound incredible.

 

But with that it does have some draw backs, the micro phonics of the Vali can occasionally be very bothersome if something drops in the kitchen next to my PC or when a wire hits the AMP you really hear it because of the tubes and that the Vali is very light (i mean weight) which makes it echo inside the chassie and to make things slightly more problematic since I cant change the tubes my self in the vali, and I have a feeling the life time of the tubes is drawing near (24 hour a day usage, because me and my cousins/brother connect there own headphones into it when there using my pc would tax the tubes quite a bit i think) I wont be able to change them, since I'm not in the US and the international shipping both ways could end up being almost the entire cost of the Vali itself. But don't get me wrong I love this amp a ton and would buy it again in a heart beat I'm just looking for something a bit different to work with my HE-400's. 

 

 

In simple I'm looking for a new setup, and I got no clue where to start or what I need to change.

My mother board on board AMP/DAC are pretty good at least in terms of on board audio the specs for it are

 

On boards audio on  ASUS Rampage IV black edition

ROG SupremeFX Black 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC 
- Supports : Jack-detection, Multi-streaming
- SupremeFX Shielding Technology
- Cirrus Logic® CS4398 DAC: 120 dB SNR, -107 dB THD+N (Max. 192 kHz/ 24 -bit) http://www.cirrus.com/en/products/cs4398.html (link to Cirrus Logic dac)
- TI 6120A2 high fidelity headphone amplifier
- WIMA® film capacitors
- ELNA® premium audio capacitors
- High-fidelity audio OP AMP(s)
- Differential circuit design
- NEC TOKIN UC2 audio relay

It also states that the AMP supports 600OHM headphones but in all honestly it couldn't even my 250OHM dt990 pro very loud at all.

(edit- Could any one also give me an idea of how good or bad the on board is on this I really don't have the experience or the knowledge to tell how a DAC or AMP comapres to any others especially since I haven't listened to many products at all.)

 

So what do guys think, do I need to get a another DAC and AMP or should I just look at getting a new AMP.

 

This is what I got so far,

1st choice was the Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1 AMP/DAC I do liek the idea of tubes though and like the more natural sound that's my this was my first choice

2nd choice was the FIIO e17 which I really thought was a good idea since i would get something portable as well as great audio but found that i cant find any where to buy the ones which are number one on head fi and I heard there are some problems if I want to use it with android devices so I dropped out this choice.

3rd choice was the ODAC and AMP but the price is the same as the D1 which I think I would prefer over this.

4th I got no clue if my amp is good enough perhaps i should just get a separate amp like my current setup just with the o2 amp or something

5th I also thought about the E18 but it seems far worse than the e17 but it does work with android.

My budget is 150-300 but any thing in the 200+ range i may not be able to purchase it at the same time as the headphone and may need to save up a bit more. So any other ideas or opinion will be great thanks. If anyone thinks something will be really worth it i may be able to go a bit higher than my limit.

 

Any advice I can get is greatly appreciated since I hardly have any experience and very little knowledge I'm hoping to learn from this great community.

Thanks and sorry for the large post.

 

Cant wait for my new setup :L3000:

 

Thanks headfiers.


Edited by icebrain1 - Yesterday at 2:23 pm
post #19818 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by icebrain1 View Post
 

On boards audio on  ASUS Rampage IV black edition

- Cirrus Logic® CS4398 DAC:

 

This is what I got so far,

1st choice was the Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1 AMP/DAC I do liek the idea of tubes though and like the more natural sound that's my this was my first choice

2nd choice was the FIIO e17 which I really thought was a good idea since i would get something portable as well as great audio but found that i cant find any where to buy the ones which are number one on head fi and I heard there are some problems if I want to use it with android devices so I dropped out this choice.

3rd choice was the ODAC and AMP but the price is the same as the D1 which I think I would prefer over this.

4th I got no clue if my amp is good enough perhaps i should just get a separate amp like my current setup just with the o2 amp or something

5th I also thought about the E18 but it seems far worse than the e17 but it does work with android.

My budget is 150-300 but any thing in the 200+ range i may not be able to purchase it at the same time as the headphone and may need to save up a bit more. So any other ideas or opinion will be great thanks. If anyone thinks something will be really worth it i may be able to go a bit higher than my limit.

 

Any advice I can get is greatly appreciated since I hardly have any experience and very little knowledge I'm hoping to learn from this great community.

Thanks and sorry for the large post.

 

Cant wait for my new setup :L3000:

 

Thanks headfiers.

I going to assume that you got the Rampage IV for gaming

 

The Cirrus Logic CS4398 is a good mobo DAC but the amp section of the Rampage IV is not that good. 

 

Cheap solution: I use a Xonar DG in one of my systems and its good for driving a HE-400 (how I started) but since the Rampage IV does not have PCI slots you will have to get the Xonar DGX PCIe card ($36 amazon).  The amp section is decent and you can change the output gain.

 

You will also need some funds to change the ear pads of the HE-400, most use either the velour ($10) or Focus ($39), I like the velour better on the HE-400.

 

I would save until you can get like a Project Ember ($325 built) or if you can built it ($275).  Also, the tubes for the ember are fairly cheap and you only need one.

 

Good luck

post #19819 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidA View Post

I going to assume that you got the Rampage IV for gaming

The Cirrus Logic CS4398 is a good mobo DAC but the amp section of the Rampage IV is not that good. 

Cheap solution: I use a Xonar DG in one of my systems and its good for driving a HE-400 (how I started) but since the Rampage IV does not have PCI slots you will have to get the Xonar DGX PCIe card ($36 amazon).  The amp section is decent and you can change the output gain.

You will also need some funds to change the ear pads of the HE-400, most use either the velour ($10) or Focus ($39), I like the velour better on the HE-400.

I would save until you can get like a Project Ember ($325 built) or if you can built it ($275).  Also, the tubes for the ember are fairly cheap and you only need one.

Good luck
Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidA View Post

I going to assume that you got the Rampage IV for gaming

The Cirrus Logic CS4398 is a good mobo DAC but the amp section of the Rampage IV is not that good. 

Cheap solution: I use a Xonar DG in one of my systems and its good for driving a HE-400 (how I started) but since the Rampage IV does not have PCI slots you will have to get the Xonar DGX PCIe card ($36 amazon).  The amp section is decent and you can change the output gain.

You will also need some funds to change the ear pads of the HE-400, most use either the velour ($10) or Focus ($39), I like the velour better on the HE-400.

I would save until you can get like a Project Ember ($325 built) or if you can built it ($275).  Also, the tubes for the ember are fairly cheap and you only need one.

Good luck

Thanks for the info so that means i should focus mainly on an amp since my mobos dac is decent thanks DavidA. Ill checkout project ember in depth soon thank you very much.

Ps
What about the schiit vallhallah 2 or Asguard 2, any one got an idea if they'll partner well with the he-400s.
post #19820 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by icebrain1 View Post



Thanks for the info so that means i should focus mainly on an amp since my mobos dac is decent thanks DavidA. Ill checkout project ember in depth soon thank you very much.

Ps
What about the schiit vallhallah 2 or Asguard 2, any one got an idea if they'll partner well with the he-400s.


The Ember pairs better with the HE-400 then the Valhalla, the Valhalla is designed for higher impedance head phones.

 

The Asgard 2 is a great combo with the HE-400, the Ember pairing is  better (at least to my ears).

post #19821 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fearless1 View Post


The Ember pairs better with the HE-400 then the Valhalla, the Valhalla is designed for higher impedance head phones.

The Asgard 2 is a great combo with the HE-400, the Ember pairing is  better (at least to my ears).

Project emebr looks great bit the main reservation I have against it is that it is very exposed and my area is really ly dusty and im worried my young cousins who are always on my pc when im not on it may destroy it in a day lol. Where as the Schiit products have a solid chassie. If the Asgard 2 is good with the he-400s I may go that route, since I want to give solid state amps a try as well. Thanks for info and advice Fearless1.
post #19822 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by icebrain1 View Post


Project emebr looks great bit the main reservation I have against it is that it is very exposed and my area is really ly dusty and im worried my young cousins who are always on my pc when im not on it may destroy it in a day lol. Where as the Schiit products have a solid chassie. If the Asgard 2 is good with the he-400s I may go that route, since I want to give solid state amps a try as well. Thanks for info and advice Fearless1.


I use the HE-400 with an Asgard 2 and it's awesome!

post #19823 of 19828

Thanks RanchBro, I guess I'll go with the the Asguard 2 then.

 

I'll report back here after i get everything delivered, setup and tested

And thanks everyone for all the help and advice.

post #19824 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by icebrain1 View Post

Greetings all,

I got some challenging questions about the HE-400, Sources, DAC's and AMP's, hope you guys are up for it. Thanks.

Alright my current setup is really not to great, but I really do enjoy it. That being said I'm looking for a way to get the most out of my next purchase the HE-400's without spending much. This is my current  setup
Source materiel is mainly Lossless (FLAC) and the occasional Lossy (MP3 320kbps) my DAC is built into my motherboard and is the Cirrus Logic CS4398 DAC connected with an 3.5mm to cable into my Schiit Vali amp which is a pleasure to listen to with my DT990 pro's as it reduces the harshness of the highs on it, and makes it sound incredible.

But with that it does have some draw backs, the micro phonics of the Vali can occasionally be very bothersome if something drops in the kitchen next to my PC or when a wire hits the AMP you really hear it because of the tubes and that the Vali is very light (i mean weight) which makes it echo inside the chassie and to make things slightly more problematic since I cant change the tubes my self in the vali, and I have a feeling the life time of the tubes is drawing near (24 hour a day usage, because me and my cousins/brother connect there own headphones into it when there using my pc would tax the tubes quite a bit i think) I wont be able to change them, since I'm not in the US and the international shipping both ways could end up being almost the entire cost of the Vali itself. But don't get me wrong I love this amp a ton and would buy it again in a heart beat I'm just looking for something a bit different to work with my HE-400's. 


In simple I'm looking for a new setup, and I got no clue where to start or what I need to change.
My mother board on board AMP/DAC are pretty good at least in terms of on board audio the specs for it are

On boards audio on  ASUS Rampage IV black edition
ROG SupremeFX Black 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC 
- Supports : Jack-detection, Multi-streaming
- SupremeFX Shielding Technology
- Cirrus Logic® CS4398 DAC: 120 dB SNR, -107 dB THD+N (Max. 192 kHz/ 24 -bit) http://www.cirrus.com/en/products/cs4398.html (link to Cirrus Logic dac)
- TI 6120A2 high fidelity headphone amplifier
- WIMA® film capacitors
- ELNA® premium audio capacitors
- High-fidelity audio OP AMP(s)
- Differential circuit design
- NEC TOKIN UC2 audio relay
It also states that the AMP supports 600OHM headphones but in all honestly it couldn't even my 250OHM dt990 pro very loud at all.
(edit- Could any one also give me an idea of how good or bad the on board is on this I really don't have the experience or the knowledge to tell how a DAC or AMP comapres to any others especially since I haven't listened to many products at all.)

So what do guys think, do I need to get a another DAC and AMP or should I just look at getting a new AMP.

This is what I got so far,
1st choice was the Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1 AMP/DAC I do liek the idea of tubes though and like the more natural sound that's my this was my first choice
2nd choice was the FIIO e17 which I really thought was a good idea since i would get something portable as well as great audio but found that i cant find any where to buy the ones which are number one on head fi and I heard there are some problems if I want to use it with android devices so I dropped out this choice.
3rd choice was the ODAC and AMP but the price is the same as the D1 which I think I would prefer over this.
4th I got no clue if my amp is good enough perhaps i should just get a separate amp like my current setup just with the o2 amp or something
5th I also thought about the E18 but it seems far worse than the e17 but it does work with android.
My budget is 150-300 but any thing in the 200+ range i may not be able to purchase it at the same time as the headphone and may need to save up a bit more. So any other ideas or opinion will be great thanks. If anyone thinks something will be really worth it i may be able to go a bit higher than my limit.

Any advice I can get is greatly appreciated since I hardly have any experience and very little knowledge I'm hoping to learn from this great community.
Thanks and sorry for the large post.

Cant wait for my new setup L3000.gif

Thanks headfiers.
I may be biased because it is what I have, but after comparing the O2 with lots of amps including high-priced ones, O2 is just plain unbeatable in terms of SQ. It just spits what's swallowed. However, I suspect you'll find the treble on the HE-400 bit harsh with this, and my suggestion to deal with that, as I've been using, is to use OCC interconnect cables (between DAC and amp). This will add bass quantity and quality without reducing treble (some cables are the other way around, like the silver cables). If you're willing to spend more, get also OCC headphone cables (between amp and HE-400). The OCC cable from Head-Direct is excellent sounding (though the provided XLR to SE adapter is heavy for portability/mobility).
Edited by diamondears - Yesterday at 7:34 pm
post #19825 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by icebrain1 View Post


Project emebr looks great bit the main reservation I have against it is that it is very exposed and my area is really ly dusty and im worried my young cousins who are always on my pc when im not on it may destroy it in a day lol. Where as the Schiit products have a solid chassie. If the Asgard 2 is good with the he-400s I may go that route, since I want to give solid state amps a try as well. Thanks for info and advice Fearless1.

I have an Asgard2 also and it just sits on my shelf once I got the Lyr2 and Ember.   But you are concerned with little ones then I would get the Asgard2, really built like a tank.

post #19826 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by icebrain1 View Post

Project emebr looks great bit the main reservation I have against it is that it is very exposed and my area is really ly dusty and im worried my young cousins who are always on my pc when im not on it may destroy it in a day lol. Where as the Schiit products have a solid chassie. If the Asgard 2 is good with the he-400s I may go that route, since I want to give solid state amps a try as well. Thanks for info and advice Fearless1.

 

you can get the project ember with a metal chassis if that is a concern, but yes, it will still be exposed. ember runs really cool. the lyr 2 runs quite hot and has a lot of ventilation holes. most tube amps are designed with some sort of air flow to prevent the tubes from overheating.

 

tubes are semi exposed in both, so someone could break them if they start poking at it. if that is a concern, i do think asgard may be a better fit for you though I highly recommend both the lyr 2 & ember for great performing sub-$1k hybrid tube amplifier. 


Edited by money4me247 - Yesterday at 10:24 pm
post #19827 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by diamondears View Post


I may be biased because it is what I have, but after comparing the O2 with lots of amps including high-priced ones, O2 is just plain unbeatable in terms of SQ. It just spits what's swallowed. However, I suspect you'll find the treble on the HE-400 bit harsh with this, and my suggestion to deal with that, as I've been using, is to use OCC interconnect cables (between DAC and amp). This will add bass quantity and quality without reducing treble (some cables are the other way around, like the silver cables). If you're willing to spend more, get also OCC headphone cables (between amp and HE-400). The OCC cable from Head-Direct is excellent sounding (though the provided XLR to SE adapter is heavy for portability/mobility).

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
 

I have an Asgard2 also and it just sits on my shelf once I got the Lyr2 and Ember.   But you are concerned with little ones then I would get the Asgard2, really built like a tank.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by money4me247 View Post
 

 

you can get the project ember with a metal chassis if that is a concern, but yes, it will still be exposed. ember runs really cool. the lyr 2 runs quite hot and has a lot of ventilation holes. most tube amps are designed with some sort of air flow to prevent the tubes from overheating.

 

tubes are semi exposed in both, so someone could break them if they start poking at it. if that is a concern, i do think asgard may be a better fit for you though I highly recommend both the lyr 2 & ember for great performing sub-$1k hybrid tube amplifier. 

 

thanks for the advice, (and not so much making me want to spend a fortune).

Alright the LYR2 seems great, and i think its an option that would suffice my amp needs for the majority of my next upgrades as well, then I can just add the DAC for my next source upgrade (in the future). So I think I'm going to go with the LYR2 then instead of the Asgard2 since it seems like a significant upgrade.

 

Just a couple questions though please sorry,

The LYR2 is a hybrid Solid State AMP and tube amp correct, does this mean i can change the tubes to get a different sound signature, and if its part solid state does that mean i can remove the tubes if i don't want them adjusting the sound?

 

it also seems good because it will work with low impedance devices as well as hard to drive devices the only thing is I'm wandering if I'm going to get static if i use something like in-ears or low end headphones (just an example of low impedance stuff I'm probably not going to do that). 

 

(now I'll be spending more on my amp than the headphones lol but it seems like something that will last in the long run so it's alright).

Thanks a ton every one.

post #19828 of 19828
Quote:
Originally Posted by icebrain1 View Post
 

 

 

 

 

 

thanks for the advice, (and not so much making me want to spend a fortune).

Alright the LYR2 seems great, and i think its an option that would suffice my amp needs for the majority of my next upgrades as well, then I can just add the DAC for my next source upgrade (in the future). So I think I'm going to go with the LYR2 then instead of the Asgard2 since it seems like a significant upgrade.

 

Just a couple questions though please sorry,

The LYR2 is a hybrid Solid State AMP and tube amp correct, does this mean i can change the tubes to get a different sound signature, and if its part solid state does that mean i can remove the tubes if i don't want them adjusting the sound?

 

it also seems good because it will work with low impedance devices as well as hard to drive devices the only thing is I'm wandering if I'm going to get static if i use something like in-ears or low end headphones (just an example of low impedance stuff I'm probably not going to do that). 

 

(now I'll be spending more on my amp than the headphones lol but it seems like something that will last in the long run so it's alright).

Thanks a ton every one.


The tubes of the LYR are part of the preamp circuit and it needs them to run. Don't know if Schiit has a safeguard in place but never run a tube or hybrid amplifier without tubes. 

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphones (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › **Hifiman HE-400 Impressions and Discussion Thread**