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**Hifiman HE-400 Impressions and Discussion Thread** - Page 147

post #2191 of 18437

Aside from the DAC talk, I just wanna say that HE-400 w/ grill mods + DAC1 + mini-X a-100 = sheer auditory bless. Still waiting on the DHC cable, as the bare wire adapter I'm using isn't ideal (too long, not built very well), but these will hold me well until the HE-6 (I probably won't sell them anyways).

 

Why no grill mod lovers? I never get to see them mentioned anymore. 

post #2192 of 18437
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrMateoHead View Post

Based on your other comments (which I omitted), I am baffled that you came to the conclusion that DAC / Amp combinations make no difference at all. Though, it sounds as though you are either hooking up different DACs to your E9, or hooking up your microamp to the E9, which yes, would alter the sound more, but not because of obvious DAC differences. Is your Microamp and Micro/DAC combo, or just an Amp?

 

Anyway, I don't know of many amps or dacs that measure perfectly flat. What I do know is that, in a lot of cases, many don't measure flat when rendering frequencies outside the audible spectrum (loosely defined as 20 hz - 20 khz). A DAC that is ruler flat through 40 Khz is only going to irritate dogs and bats. Any amp that "rolls" frequencies off at either end of the audible spectrum is a problem for me, as that is always going to alter the sound of a given headphone / song. Though, some people prefer that sort of deliberate "coloration" because they believe in compensates for undesireable qualities (like "too much treble" or "boomy bass").

 

Add in the issue of manufacturers being free to take their own measures and otherwise "hide" the measured performance of their products, and what you have is a world where, most of the time, consumers have to "guess" which products will offer "no fuss" performance so they can just get to the business of enjoying their music. The E9, for example, is an affordable 1-watt amp, but I skipped it because I suspect the O2 I am using instead offers more power to a wider range of headphones.

 

I'm not sure where you read that or got that idea. I don't believe this actually. I guess my post is a bit all over the place. I 100% totally believe in this thing called amp synergy and that every thing in your setup makes a difference. I also totally believe in amp/dac synergy. I do believe it's easy to NOT like a specific headphone with the wrong amp. Only if the amp is somewhat colored though maybe. I hated the K702 with the Asgard and i'm glad I tried something else. It was also bad with the ATH-AD2000 and K601.

 

I think my goal from now on is to buy only equipment that's very neutral and as transparent as possible. My new rule will be that I don't want my equipment altering how a headphone should sound. I have no problem with people doing this and with some headphones i'd like this. I think my amp/dac should play well with most every headphone and not just with specific headphones.

 

The Headroom Micro is just an amp. I upgraded to it from the Asgard and haven't looked back. I think the only thing on the radar is an O2 for comparison and then a Lyr. I actually might skip a Lyr and just get an HD-650 or something else. Sometime I'd love to try the Matrix M-Stage. I honestly prefer to stick with US built products though.

 

I hated the Asgard with the K702 so much that I ignored people at first that it was not a great match. I tried it with the E9 and was shocked at how much more I liked the K702. I will say the Asgard is amazing with the D2000 and HD-600. The Micro just seems to play well with everything. I actually bought the Micro for the HD-650 and K702. Perfect match for those. The HD-650 is on my radar again now that I have a better DAC. My DAC for the HD-650 was my weakest link at the time.

 

I sure wish some measurements of the Lyr or Asgard were around, but I haven't seen any. I haven't seen any measurements for the ODAC, but it sounds pretty even without it changing how any of my headphones sound. I guess that's what i'm looking for.

 

I think the HRT MSII and E10 might have slightly rolled off treble. Maybe that's why I didn't love the E10 and it was such a poor match for my HD-598 and DJ100? That's my guess. I think the MSII isn't as dark as the E10 though.

 

BTW it's interesting that the E9, M-Stage and Micro all share the same op-amps, but probably couldn't sound any more different! It's interesting that some think that if the opamp is the same, they sound the same.

 

Maybe if I ever get the Lyr it'll make me love the HD-650. I think maybe i'll never love the HD-650. I prefer the 598 and HD-580 by far.

post #2193 of 18437

edit: nevermind, i'm dumb.

 

To stop derailing this thread, i'll stop talking about stupid amps/dacs.


Edited by tdockweiler - 11/9/12 at 5:38pm
post #2194 of 18437
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post

I hope you're not referring to me. If so that's rather childish of you. You asked me a serious question and I replied.

I gave you a serious reply and now I guess I'm a troll?

 

Yeah the thread got derailed, but you're the one who brought up DACs and ODAC/MSII comparisons. I'm not sure how you expect people to not comment.

 

If you're labeling me as a troll, you should click that link you just gave us.

 

Not you brother...not you. redface.gif

post #2195 of 18437
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwinQY View Post

Aside from the DAC talk, I just wanna say that HE-400 w/ grill mods + DAC1 + mini-X a-100 = sheer auditory bless. Still waiting on the DHC cable, as the bare wire adapter I'm using isn't ideal (too long, not built very well), but these will hold me well until the HE-6 (I probably won't sell them anyways).

 

Why no grill mod lovers? I never get to see them mentioned anymore. 

 

I plan to do this mod over the weekend! Regarding other possible modifications--would it be wise to add some quality felt or some other form of sound dampening to the interior of the headphone cups? Also, has anyone tired the Beyer ear-pads besides Yokken? 

post #2196 of 18437
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwinQY View Post

Aside from the DAC talk, I just wanna say that HE-400 w/ grill mods + DAC1 + mini-X a-100 = sheer auditory bless. Still waiting on the DHC cable, as the bare wire adapter I'm using isn't ideal (too long, not built very well), but these will hold me well until the HE-6 (I probably won't sell them anyways).

 

Why no grill mod lovers? I never get to see them mentioned anymore. 

 

People are either too busy or are pssying out, or a combination of both. Any tweaking or modding on a $400 headphone, especially for people who have never modded before, would seem like a monumental task even if it really isn't.

 

Oh by the way, after some discussion with someone about the longevity of orthodynamic drivers, I was convinced to modify the grill mod further to add dust-proofing, by opening the cup assembly up, and tape a stretched piece of speaker cloth over each driver. I thought having them on right against the driver would mitigate the backwave issue if I have the fabric integrated with the grill distanced away from the driver.

 

Quote from the discussion:

 

"Jerg, you should put some kind of speaker cloth or women's panties on the inside of that grill for dust and dirt protection.  You don't want to get particles into the driver, you'll get rattles from them bouncing around on the diaphragm and could permanently ruin the phones unless you can take the driver apart completely.  And it won't take long for that to happen with them open like that. You will eventually get some dirt in there.  Or let me put it this way, if a lot of people started doing that mod, some of them would wind up with ruined HE500's or HE500's in need of repair.  I have ruined orthos before from leaving bare drivers exposed while I have the cups opened up working on damping schemes. "

 

post #2197 of 18437
Thread Starter 

Yokken is the only one that I know I of. Hopefully, we will have some new pads to truly improve the he400 in a few months. biggrin.gif

post #2198 of 18437

Hey, Tdockweiler! You're the guy who turned me onto the Q 701's!  I posted a few comments on your thread three or four months ago. I love those headphones, but boy, the he400 is a real step up in sound quality, imho. Have you picked up a pair of he-400's, or are you planning on buying some soon? They really are amazing headphones, though admittedly, they are very different from the Q's. I would love to know what you think about these bad boys. 

post #2199 of 18437
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattTCG View Post

Yokken is the only one that I know I of. Hopefully, we will have some new pads to truly improve the he400 in a few months. biggrin.gif

I must learn patience (I must, I must, I must), but this grasshopper has a hard time waiting for anything, which drives my wife bonkers. 

post #2200 of 18437
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post

 

People are either too busy or are pssying out, or a combination of both. Any tweaking or modding on a $400 headphone, especially for people who have never modded before, would seem like a monumental task even if it really isn't.

 

Oh by the way, after some discussion with someone about the longevity of orthodynamic drivers, I was convinced to modify the grill mod further to add dust-proofing, by opening the cup assembly up, and tape a stretched piece of speaker cloth over each driver. I thought having them on right against the driver would mitigate the backwave issue if I have the fabric integrated with the grill distanced away from the driver.

 

Quote from the discussion:

 

"Jerg, you should put some kind of speaker cloth or women's panties on the inside of that grill for dust and dirt protection.  You don't want to get particles into the driver, you'll get rattles from them bouncing around on the diaphragm and could permanently ruin the phones unless you can take the driver apart completely.  And it won't take long for that to happen with them open like that. You will eventually get some dirt in there.  Or let me put it this way, if a lot of people started doing that mod, some of them would wind up with ruined HE500's or HE500's in need of repair.  I have ruined orthos before from leaving bare drivers exposed while I have the cups opened up working on damping schemes. "

 

 

But not only is it easy to undo, the costs are zilch, and the time taken to do them is like 5 minutes...people these days, huh.

 

Also, I've done something similar for the dust, but with a very, very thin piece of fibre paper. Pretty much acoustical transparent. The speaker cloth would look more aesthetically pleasing though. 

post #2201 of 18437
Quote:
Originally Posted by Madmollusk View Post

Hey, Tdockweiler! You're the guy who turned me onto the Q 701's!  I posted a few comments on your thread three or four months ago. I love those headphones, but boy, the he400 is a real step up in sound quality, imho. Have you picked up a pair of he-400's, or are you planning on buying some soon? They really are amazing headphones, though admittedly, they are very different from the Q's. I would love to know what you think about these bad boys. 


The Hifiman headphones are on my radar for sure. I just don't want something so power hungry that it'll require a new amp. They might push my Micro Amp to the limits. Despite how small it is, it drives the 600 ohm Beyers and even the K400/K501 with ease. Not a portable amp, but full desktop amp.

 

I don't know if i'll like the HE-400, but it looks like it's quite a good deal. When I heard that it's fairly laid back and very warm, then that kind of makes me lose interest. I'll admit I don't like very warm headphones. The HD-580 is kind of my limit. Maybe i'm too used to the Sennheiser type of warmth. Is there a difference? biggrin.gif

 

Somehow when I think of a very warm sound, alarms go off in my head that it'll be really muffled sounding, but most likely this will be wrong.

 

Most of my headphones are great for female vocals (I listen to a lot of Jpop, but it's mostly the boring type with female vocals) so maybe the HE-400 is perfect for them. I usually dislike any headphone that has recessed sounding vocals though.

 

Maybe the HE-400 will be the first very warm headphone I love. I think when I sell my house i'll use some of that money to get a Lyr, HE-400 or HD-650 normal_smile%20.gif

 

When I get these i'll definitely post a review. Probably will sound totally opposite of the Q701 or HD-598!

post #2202 of 18437
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post


The Hifiman headphones are on my radar for sure. I just don't want something so power hungry that it'll require a new amp. They might push my Micro Amp to the limits. Despite how small it is, it drives the 600 ohm Beyers and even the K400/K501 with ease. Not a portable amp, but full desktop amp.

 

I don't know if i'll like the HE-400, but it looks like it's quite a good deal. When I heard that it's fairly laid back and very warm, then that kind of makes me lose interest. I'll admit I don't like very warm headphones. The HD-580 is kind of my limit. Maybe i'm too used to the Sennheiser type of warmth. Is there a difference? biggrin.gif

 

Somehow when I think of a very warm sound, alarms go off in my head that it'll be really muffled sounding, but most likely this will be wrong.

 

Most of my headphones are great for female vocals (I listen to a lot of Jpop, but it's mostly the boring type with female vocals) so maybe the HE-400 is perfect for them. I usually dislike any headphone that has recessed sounding vocals though.

 

Maybe the HE-400 will be the first very warm headphone I love. I think when I sell my house i'll use some of that money to get a Lyr, HE-400 or HD-650 normal_smile%20.gif

 

When I get these i'll definitely post a review. Probably will sound totally opposite of the Q701 or HD-598!

 

Definitely the HD580s are a bit warmer. Just a bit. Planar warmth is pretty different from the usual Senn warm, or just warm-sounding dynamics in general.

 

The HE-400s sound great for some J-Pop. Really takes the edge and harshness out of some vocals (e.g Shiina and Tokyo Jihen sounds great on these) . Just make sure they aren't terribly recorded/mastered (well, relatively, it is J-pop), or treble-heavy like Perfume, as they will accentuate the quantities like crazy, and definitely requires some EQing down.

post #2203 of 18437
Quote:
Originally Posted by Madmollusk View Post

 

I plan to do this mod over the weekend! Regarding other possible modifications--would it be wise to add some quality felt or some other form of sound dampening to the interior of the headphone cups? Also, has anyone tired the Beyer ear-pads besides Yokken? 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by MattTCG View Post

Yokken is the only one that I know I of. Hopefully, we will have some new pads to truly improve the he400 in a few months. biggrin.gif

 

There was another guy in here who said he'd tried many pads, including the Beyers, on his HE400 and said out of all of them, the HFM velours sounded the best, even though they're not the most comfortable. I personally did not like the sound with the Beyer pads/foam. If I was going to do it again, I wouldn't use the Beyer foam. I would just use stretched pantyhose or speaker cloth. Something thin to keep the drivers clean. The foam dampened the sound too much.

post #2204 of 18437
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post


The Hifiman headphones are on my radar for sure. I just don't want something so power hungry that it'll require a new amp. They might push my Micro Amp to the limits. Despite how small it is, it drives the 600 ohm Beyers and even the K400/K501 with ease. Not a portable amp, but full desktop amp.

 

I don't know if i'll like the HE-400, but it looks like it's quite a good deal. When I heard that it's fairly laid back and very warm, then that kind of makes me lose interest. I'll admit I don't like very warm headphones. The HD-580 is kind of my limit. Maybe i'm too used to the Sennheiser type of warmth. Is there a difference? biggrin.gif

 

Somehow when I think of a very warm sound, alarms go off in my head that it'll be really muffled sounding, but most likely this will be wrong.

 

Most of my headphones are great for female vocals (I listen to a lot of Jpop, but it's mostly the boring type with female vocals) so maybe the HE-400 is perfect for them. I usually dislike any headphone that has recessed sounding vocals though.

 

Maybe the HE-400 will be the first very warm headphone I love. I think when I sell my house i'll use some of that money to get a Lyr, HE-400 or HD-650 normal_smile%20.gif

 

When I get these i'll definitely post a review. Probably will sound totally opposite of the Q701 or HD-598!

 

It used to be the case, but HE400 is a rather pleasant exception, any self-respecting entry-level amp will be able to handle it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Quote:
Originally Posted by TwinQY View Post

 

But not only is it easy to undo, the costs are zilch, and the time taken to do them is like 5 minutes...people these days, huh.

 

Also, I've done something similar for the dust, but with a very, very thin piece of fibre paper. Pretty much acoustical transparent. The speaker cloth would look more aesthetically pleasing though. 

 

The secret here is that the speaker cloth I used is just the fabric that's adhered to the back of the stock grills biggrin.gif it comes off quite easily with some careful yanking, and is just the right size so I don't need to do any cutting. It's not a permanent change to the stock grills either, as you can just re-adhere the fabric back on.


Edited by jerg - 11/9/12 at 6:33pm
post #2205 of 18437
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post


The Hifiman headphones are on my radar for sure. I just don't want something so power hungry that it'll require a new amp. They might push my Micro Amp to the limits. Despite how small it is, it drives the 600 ohm Beyers and even the K400/K501 with ease. Not a portable amp, but full desktop amp.

 

I don't know if i'll like the HE-400, but it looks like it's quite a good deal. When I heard that it's fairly laid back and very warm, then that kind of makes me lose interest. I'll admit I don't like very warm headphones. The HD-580 is kind of my limit. Maybe i'm too used to the Sennheiser type of warmth. Is there a difference? biggrin.gif

 

Somehow when I think of a very warm sound, alarms go off in my head that it'll be really muffled sounding, but most likely this will be wrong.

 

Most of my headphones are great for female vocals (I listen to a lot of Jpop, but it's mostly the boring type with female vocals) so maybe the HE-400 is perfect for them. I usually dislike any headphone that has recessed sounding vocals though.

 

Maybe the HE-400 will be the first very warm headphone I love. I think when I sell my house i'll use some of that money to get a Lyr, HE-400 or HD-650 normal_smile%20.gif

 

When I get these i'll definitely post a review. Probably will sound totally opposite of the Q701 or HD-598!

I wouldn't really call the the He400 warm. They sound a lot like the Dt880 (600ohm version), only way better, and unlike the dt880, the he400's midrange is not at all recessed. Of course, there's that infamous "upper-mid-range recession," but it doesn't affect male vocals at all and only affects female vocals a little bit. (I say this about female vocals, but I just realized that I don't really hear it that way any more--I guess I've fully adjusted to the he400's sound, or maybe I finally burned them in.)  And you're right: the he400 sounds very different from the Q701. The Q's, to my ears, are some of the most "neutral" headphones I've ever heard, while the he400 adds a dash of fun to the equation. 


Edited by Madmollusk - 11/9/12 at 6:38pm
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