Wow.... This thread keeps growing like crazy....
I am probably going to get a lot of heat for this post....
I received my replacement HE400 approximately 3 weeks ago. Since then, I can't stop listening to all my music collection.
As I previously mentioned in this thread, my Fiio E11 weren't sounding good/adequate with these phones. Especially with the combination of high gain setting and bass boost level 1 or 2, bass was completely distorted. Jerg told a very important point.... a good undistorted tight bass is a quality of a good amplifier. That was a really sound advice... thanks jerg. I also tried E9. But wasn't satisfied.
Now comes the part where I will receive some heat.... I bought a Yamaha RX-V373 for these phones. Yeah, I know.... It's an AVR. I was just going to try it and was almost looking forward to sending it back. But then I got the receiver in mail and after I plugged the phones in, I haven't removed those till this day. It obviously provides more than enough power. I play almost all my music on -25dB volume level (and this AVR can go up to +16dB) and that's loud enough for hours and hours of music listening experience without any sort of fatigue. I was surprised at the bass response of these phones. Sooooo much potential was just hiding there without the amp.
These phones have proven every bit worthy of the praise they are getting here. Now, I listen to most of the songs from my computer.
J.River MC -> (bitstreaming) -> Yamaha RX-V373 -> HE400.
Velours helped with the highs a little. They are also really comfortable for me. Now I can plug my new CD player to Yamaha and keep enjoying the music.
This limits me to my desk, yes. But I spend most of my time at my desk and I don't really think that these phones are suitable for portable use.
Only word is... wow. Let the criticism about AVR begin....