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HE-500 Review and Shoot out. - Page 32

post #466 of 846

HD800s : still, after many amps, on popular music (CDs), there is an vague/occasional sense of abrasion or piercingness (sorry to the English language) that can be annoying or tiring.

LCD3s: awesome bass with great texture with the right amps (tubed), but still it can feel like the music is pushing to get out, sometimes trying too hard. Still very pleasing  and a keeper phone just a bit of an unnatural sound field.

HE500s: Spacious and one of my "goldilocks" phones, with all frequencies going to the limits w/o being overdone. Not as much texture as HD800s or Stax 009s, but more than enough to make it real and stay musical.

HE6: I believe it needs a good speaker amp and I have not had the privilege of hearing this combo but I sure trust Fang to make this sound great. So no judgement from me on this, and I assume you are right.

post #467 of 846
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgs9200m View Post

I really like your review--very well written and comprehensive and professional (you deserve job writing audio reviews).
Your impressions match mine about 100% since I also have the HE500s and almost the same Grados (RS1s).

Quick question to HE500 fans like myself: what (if any) aftermarket cable have you tried and what are your sonic impressions of them? Thanks in advance.
I'm going to try Moon Silver Dragons.

I like the HE500s (so far) better than my HD800s or LCD3s.

And just my 2 cents, although just personal, I love the comfort of the HE500s in every way (I just use the leather pads originally installed; I haven't tried the velours).
The are not too heavy, clamping, hot, or anything; I feel them, but they feel good, like a nice serious headphone.
Sometimes if a headphone is too delicate-feeling, it annoys me.
On the other had, if a phone is too overwhelming, like Senn 600s/650s were too me, I can't stand it for long. Audezes are about my upper limit for grip and weight, but they are still OK.
The HE500s are just in the perfect range for me.

Pls also take into consideration double helix cables ( i use one) they sound heavenly with both the he300 and he500. And toxic cables. Both i think are worthy buying for ur hifiman.
post #468 of 846

I bought the Silver/Copper job from Toxic. I noticed a difference in sound instantly. The sound was a little thinner and harder with the stock silver cable.

 

1000

post #469 of 846

Thanks for the suggestions! I will give Drew a chance and see what happens.

post #470 of 846
Quote:
Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post

I bought the Silver/Copper job from Toxic. I noticed a difference in sound instantly. The sound was a little thinner and harder with the stock silver cable.

 

1000

I have fabric Qaudio cable braided like yours on my 400's. I've always wondered how they sound over stock, but I don't have the stock cables.

post #471 of 846
Thread Starter 

I'm thinking about making a cable for me self. I'm not a believer but i want to make a caper one with high quality wire and see if i can hear it.

post #472 of 846
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgs9200m View Post

Thanks for the suggestions! I will give Drew a chance and see what happens.

 

I can vouch for Norn cables. I don't believe it changed the sound (not in any way I could tell) but simply having a quality, flexible, braided cable made using my HE-500's a lot more enjoyable. The stock cable is horrible for ergonomics and if it hits anything solid you hear it up the cable.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by WhiteCrow View Post

I'm thinking about making a cable for me self. I'm not a believer but i want to make a caper one with high quality wire and see if i can hear it.

 

I'm always pretty dubious when people ascribe these grand changes to headphone cables. Maybe they really are hearing what they say they are, but I have my doubts. In terms of comfort and ergonomics, however, a good after-market cable will be a few orders of magnitude better than the stock cable.

post #473 of 846

Have any of you with the HE 500s tried them with portable amps such as the ALO National or Continental V2, or others?  I'd be curious to hear any impressions as well as comparisons with more highly-powered amps.  Thanks.

post #474 of 846

I mailed ALO and they said The National can drive the HE-500s. I'd also love to get some feedback from users.

post #475 of 846
I also have a clear preference for the HE-500 over the HD 800. I too found certain tracks to have a shrill quality to the treble, not all the time but often enough to pull me out of what I was listening to. I also preferred them to the LCD 2(r2) but for the opposite reason, I found that the bass on the LCD2 to be just a bit too prominent on certain tracks but once again only on a few. I think that out of all the headphones I have tried I find the sound signature of the HE-500 to be in that sweet spot for me.

I don't care for the HE-400 as it is too much of a bass focussed sound for me but I'm amazed at what they do for the price. I haven't heard the LCD 3 or HE 6 but based on my experience I will skip the LCD 3 and if I were to upgrade again would go for the HE-6. That isn't happening for a while as I'm perfectly content with my setup and have some upgrades to my Rega RP3 in mind...damn this hobby
post #476 of 846
And I will add my voice again to recommend the Norse Audio Cables. I'm not a firm believer in dramatic changes to sound quality via cables but I also took the plunge out of frustration with stock silver cable and am so much happier with the Norn.

Soft, flexible, zero microphonics, and with the adapter setup was easy to add an extension and if I go balanced will be affordable to change without a whole new cable. That and the fact that Trevor is amazing to deal with makes it a no-brainer recommendation.
post #477 of 846

Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwirugby View Post

Have any of you with the HE 500s tried them with portable amps such as the ALO National or Continental V2, or others?  I'd be curious to hear any impressions as well as comparisons with more highly-powered amps.  Thanks.

 

I don't know about the ALO National or Continental V2. But I've tried the HE500 out of a Leckerton UHA-6S and it will drive them effortlessly. IME the HE500 are not hard to drive. They are by far easier to drive than my now sold DT990 (250 ohms). In fact, I can satisfactorily drive them out of my Sansa Zip (volume setting at -20dB.)

 

I prefer them with the velour pads as I can hear a faint echo or tubey sound out of them using the pleather pads, but YMMV. Regarding the bass, these cans have good impact. It is not the impact provided by the Grados though, which have quite a bit of mid-bass emphasis. Furthermore, relative to most dynamic headphones I've heard (Grados included) the bass is very well extended and neutral.

 

The HE500 sound fairly laid back across the audio band and sound very pleasant and warm to my ears. They are also very clean across the audio band. The HE500 have a good amount of air and provide quite a bit of soundstage.

 

Impressions relative to the HE400: The HE400 are even easier to drive than the HE500. The bass of the HE400 has slightly less impact, is slightly more controlled and is slightly cleaner. The HE400 are also relatively brighter (Note the HE400 are nowhere near as bright as my now gone DT990-250.)

 

Impressions relative to the HD558: The HE500 sounds more laid back, but with more air. The HE500 offers a cleaner and more netural bass and midrange. The HE500 is also more forgiving of sibilant recordings. 

 

Impressions relative to the KSC-75: This is a Grado like headphone at an incredibly affordable price. While the HE500 offers a slight emphasis in the mid-bass, it is not quite the impact offered by the KSC-75 or most Grados. Instead, the HE500 offers a much cleaner, controlled, and extended bass response.

 

Overall, the HE500 is a great headphone at a great price.


Edited by ultrabike - 11/8/12 at 10:45pm
post #478 of 846
Quote:
Originally Posted by detoxguy View Post

And I will add my voice again to recommend the Norse Audio Cables. I'm not a firm believer in dramatic changes to sound quality via cables but I also took the plunge out of frustration with stock silver cable and am so much happier with the Norn.
Soft, flexible, zero microphonics, and with the adapter setup was easy to add an extension and if I go balanced will be affordable to change without a whole new cable. That and the fact that Trevor is amazing to deal with makes it a no-brainer recommendation.

 

+1 on the Norse Cable and Trevor..

post #479 of 846

I had the HE400 and sold them after buying the HE500's. I thought there was no comparison, the 500's were much more organic, less electronic sounding in other words much more refined. I could not see someone having both and not liking the 500's more. I have the ALO RX Mark3b and the National 2. The 3B drives the headphone fine and I like it better sonically to the National. I will try the National and get back with you.

post #480 of 846
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jwm48324 View Post

I had the HE400 and sold them after buying the HE500's. I thought there was no comparison, the 500's were much more organic, less electronic sounding in other words much more refined. I could not see someone having both and not liking the 500's more. I have the ALO RX Mark3b and the National 2. The 3B drives the headphone fine and I like it better sonically to the National. I will try the National and get back with you.

Count me as someone who had both and prefers the 400. For me, the 500 has a bit too much mid bass emphasis that bleeds into the mids causing a thickness to certain vocals and instruments. The 500's are also borderline treble recessed to me resulting in a lack of sparkle and air. I agree the 500 is the more neutral headphone of the two, but I personally prefer the leaner, punchier, and livelier sound of the 400 over the liquidity of the 500.
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