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Sennheiser HD 700 Impressions Thread - Page 76

post #1126 of 7128

Well.... to show what it is we appreciate, of course : ) 

 

I am in awe of the HD-800, but not inspired to pay the price of entry quite yet, nor the price of appropriate extraction regarding the pressure one now has to find the right amp and make that investment as well.  I think "irrelevant" is a bit pedantic, here are the reasons why I would honestly prefer the HD-700 to the HD-800:

 

1) I personally don't get that excited with super spacious and super detailed sound stages... not what I am all about

2) I don't like huge ear cups and ear pads, I prefer a modest physical profile and place ergonomics very high on my list of priorities.  The HD-800 is also highly ergonomic, but the size and the fit feel awkward to me, a different kind of feel and I don't like the intrusion down into my upper jaw line.

3) I prefer a little excitement and what I value most in the music spectrum is found from 40Hz to 2kHz.  In that range, the HD-700 is very smooth and balanced, with good punch, control and detail resolution

4) For pop, alternative, rock and jazz, the treble peaks and dips do not detract from my enjoyment, in fact they add to it 90% of the time or more...

5) A decent sub 1k DAC and a Bottlehead Crack/Speedball is a reasonable "end-game" rig with HD-700 at the end... while those with HD-800 are probably still chasing the audiophile rainbow a bit deeper into the woods.

6) 150 ohms and generally better efficiency means I still have fun direct into phone or laptop, not sure I would enjoy those times as much with an HD-800.

7) Much respect for Purin's review, because even though he clearly hates it, he reinforced the reasons why it just might work for me ,and it does.  I had always thought there was something to the Grado sound, but knew it was probably too much for me.  The HD-700 isn't afraid to step out of line a bit and make things more exciting, but in a more restrained and much more refined way than the Grado phones do (my interpretation of many posts/comments from both camps, I have only heard the entry Grado's from friends many years ago...)

 

I hope to add an HD-800 at some point down the road, but it will be for certain moods and certain music.  It's stark neutral nature will not always be a welcome sound, though it will admittedly open a whole new door when I am in the mood to walk through it.  I see the HD-800 as the high end carbon racing bicycle where the HD-700 is a cyclocross bike with a little bit of mountain bike geometry in the mix for a more comfortable upright riding position.  Both are high performance machines, but one is a bit more flexible and forgiving of terrain for those of us who venture out a bit, but not as perfect as the other when the road is smooth.  Neither one ever makes the other irrelevant in my world.


Edited by Greggo - 1/18/14 at 2:30pm
post #1127 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greggo View Post

Well.... to show what it is we appreciate, of course : ) 

I am in awe of the HD-800, but not inspired to pay the price of entry quite yet, nor the price of appropriate extraction regarding the pressure one now has to find the right amp and make that investment as well.  I think "irrelevant" is a bit pedantic, here are the reasons why I would honestly prefer the HD-700 to the HD-800:

1) I personally don't get that excited with super spacious and super detailed sound stages... not what I am all about
2) I don't like huge ear cups and ear pads, I prefer a modest physical profile and place ergonomics very high on my list of priorities.  The HD-800 is also highly ergonomic, but the size and the fit feel awkward to me, a different kind of feel and I don't like the intrusion down into my upper jaw line.
3) I prefer a little excitement and what I value most in the music spectrum is found from 40Hz to 2kHz.  In that range, the HD-700 is very smooth and balanced, with good punch, control and detail resolution
4) For pop, alternative, rock and jazz, the treble peaks and dips do not detract from my enjoyment, in fact they add to it 90% of the time or more...
5) A decent sub 1k DAC and a Bottlehead Crack/Speedball is a reasonable "end-game" rig with HD-700 at the end... while those with HD-800 are probably still chasing the audiophile rainbow a bit deeper into the woods.
6) 150 ohms and generally better efficiency means I still have fun direct into phone or laptop, not sure I would enjoy those times as much with an HD-800.
7) Much respect for Purin's review, because even though he clearly hates it, he reinforced the reasons why it just might work for me ,and it does.  I had always thought there was something to the Grado sound, but new it was too much for me.  The HD-700 isn't afraid to step out of line a bit and make things more exciting, but in a much more restrained and much more refined way than the Grado phones do

I hope to add an HD-800 at some point down the road, but it will be for certain moods and certain music.  It's stark neutral nature will not always be a welcome sound, though it will admittedly open a whole new door when I am in the mood to walk through it.  I see the HD-800 as the high end carbon racing bicycle where the HD-700 is a cyclocross bike with a little bit of mountain bike geometry in the mix for a more comfortable upright riding position.  Both are high performance machines, but one is a bit more flexible and forgiving of terrain for those of us who venture out a bit, but not as perfect as the other when the road is smooth.  Neither one ever makes the other irrelevant in my world.
I was drawn originally to the HD700 because I had heard the HD800 was too amp picky and too focused on the technicalities of sound rather than the enjoyment of music, and you need to spend $$$ on your chain for good sound. That's a load of bull. My amp chain at about $500 (Quickie w/ PJCCS + Crack w/ SB) makes the music as enjoying and full of life as any other headphone, and keeps all the technical superiorities. Considering I got the SB upgrade for free as part of the Crack special sale, and the HD800 at $890 from the Amazon year end sale, in all it cost $1300. I guess the takeaway is wait for sales. I originally bought my HD700 at $1000 and then a Woo Audio WA7 at $1000 as well. For $2000, how did that setup compare to my current one at only $1300? That pricier setup might be 70% as good to what I have now, if that.
post #1128 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigglesworth View Post
 

why do people go on appreciation threads and bash the subject of appreciation?


I hope you're not suggesting that I'm bashing the HD700. I love those headphones, and I think I've adequately expressed that in my previous posts. But the HD800, imho, is arguably the king of dynamic headphones. Acknowledging that shouldn't reflect negatively on the HD700 (Sennheiser obviously assigned the HD700 the lower numerical designation for a very good reason.)  Indeed, the HD700 and HD800 have a lot in common, but the HD800 simply outperforms the HD700 in every way--objectively, or perhaps, technically speaking. Better sound-stage; better imaging; more neutrality; smoother treble; and way more micro-details. Again, I love the HD700. Please don't misunderstand me. The HD700 is amazing!  (I wouldn't post here if I though otherwise.) The HD700's sound-signature is incredibly lively; its bass is tight, controlled, articulate, and yet the bass hits hard without any hint of bloat. In this regard, I'd choose the HD700 over the HD800 any day--but that, you see, is my very subjective preference.  Luckily, I don't have to choose between these fine headphones. I can keep them both. For that reason, I probably shouldn't have given Pdrm 360s post a "+1." For the record, the HD800 doesn't reduce the HD700 to irrelevancy!   If you need an apology for this, then I sincerely apologize; now, let's move on and get back to praising the HD700!   


Edited by Madmollusk - 1/19/14 at 9:11am
post #1129 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ross View Post
 

Just wanted to let people know about this cable for the HD700 available on ebay: http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/NEW-Replacement-Audio-upgrade-Cable-For-Sennheiser-HD700-HD-700-Headphone-/261317123574?pt=US_MP3_Player_Cables_Adapters&var&hash=item3cd7b6ddf6&_uhb=1

 

I was looking for a good quality copper cable for the HD700. I found the sound of the stock HD700 a bit too peaky in the treble, and suspected it might be the silver in the cable. I replaced it with a Moon Audio Black Dragon, but that took it to the opposite extreme - flat  and dull sounding. Rather than spend big money on another expensive after market cable, I found this one on ebay for around $30. It arrived today. Initial impressions are that it is very well made and, more importantly, sounds really good. It removes the slight brightness of the stock cable while smoothing out the sound, but without the heaviness of the Black Dragon. So far I am quite impressed. I should add that I have no connection with the seller. 

Ross,

 

Thanks again for this recommendation... Mine just arrived this morning.  The seller was really good to work with, good communication, and the cable arrived faster than I expected given the origin.  Listening to it now.  I was using a Cardas adapter on the stock cable, but now using the 1.5m version of this cable and it is working out great.  I think I am hearing a slightly different character, and one for the better.  I also noticed that things got just a bit louder as well, probably some insertion loss with the old set up.  Anyways, this feels like a small step in the right direction sound wise, and giant step in terms of convenience... very light and flexible, appears to be good build quality, stays out of the way, and now direct into 3.5mm jack.  Money well spent IMHO.

post #1130 of 7128

Glad you like it. I was so impressed with this cable on my HD700 that I bought the same cables for my HD600 and Momentum, and they all sound superb. I have some very expensive cables for my HD600 and these might just be the best, at about 10% of the price of some others! 

 

The cables sounded good immediately, but also improve with a little bit of burn in, so keep listening for the next day or two as the sound tightens up.

post #1131 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonido View Post


I was drawn originally to the HD700 because I had heard the HD800 was too amp picky and too focused on the technicalities of sound rather than the enjoyment of music, and you need to spend $$$ on your chain for good sound. That's a load of bull. My amp chain at about $500 (Quickie w/ PJCCS + Crack w/ SB) makes the music as enjoying and full of life as any other headphone, and keeps all the technical superiorities. Considering I got the SB upgrade for free as part of the Crack special sale, and the HD800 at $890 from the Amazon year end sale, in all it cost $1300. I guess the takeaway is wait for sales. I originally bought my HD700 at $1000 and then a Woo Audio WA7 at $1000 as well. For $2000, how did that setup compare to my current one at only $1300? That pricier setup might be 70% as good to what I have now, if that.

Sonido, nothing but respect for your path... I have followed your posts and appreciate your contributions.  You have definitely paid the "early adopter" tax no doubt, but then had a very happy ending as you put together a great system at an attractive price.  My points were based on current price points and general consensus as many have not had your experience with a reasonable chain.  I intend to go to the Crack/Speedball based on your comments and others... and if I do ever pull the trigger on the HD-800, it will only be because I can still use the Crack/Speedball and not feel like I am missing much of anything.  I am glad the HD-800 has been a good experience for you, and even though my time with it has been very limited, I do remain convinced that my own experience would not be quite as across the board positive as yours has been.  Just my general impression at this point, integrating all the anecdotal data points.


Edited by Greggo - 1/18/14 at 2:51pm
post #1132 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greggo View Post
 

Ross,

 

Thanks again for this recommendation... Mine just arrived this morning.  The seller was really good to work with, good communication, and the cable arrived faster than I expected given the origin.

Seeing I still had to put on a 4 pin XLR connector and have some Canare cable on hand I opted for pair of these instead and save a few more dollars.

Might be a few weeks before they arrive but I'll post my impressions.

 

Just a note, tried find some micro mini jacks locally but the recessed connection makes it almost impossible without some surgery.

post #1133 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greggo View Post

Sonido, nothing but respect for your path... I have followed your posts and appreciate your contributions.  You have definitely paid the "early adopter" tax no doubt.  My points were based on current price points and general consensus as many have not had your experience with a reasonable chain.  I intend to go to the Crack/Speedball based on your comments and others... and if I do ever pull the trigger on the HD-800, it will only be because I can still use the Crack/Speedball and not feel like I am missing much of anything.  I am glad the HD-800 has been a good experience for you, and even though my time with it has been very limited, I do remain convinced that my own experience would not be quite as across the board positive as yours has been.  Just my general impression at this point, integrating all the anecdotal data points.
Do you have Crack already? If so, you should try adding the Quickie to your chain. Only $100. I felt it pulled far more weight for the sound signature than the Crack for my HD800. Someone else tried this combo with their T1 and reported noticeable improvement as well. Then again the HD700 is euphonic enough already and doesn't require the added euphony the Quickie gives. Though I did like adding the Quickie with my HE-500 and Emotiva chain as well. My new chain is the reason I would like to try the HD700 again. I was never too impressed by the WA7. My comparison of the HD700 with WA7 being 70% of my current HD800 chain can be misleading because it's not a direct comparison between the two headphones since they have different chains. I'm sure through my current Quickie Crack chain the HD700 would be closer to 90% of the HD800.
post #1134 of 7128

Since 14 months ago that I got my HD700, I've not seen these all fanatics on the HD700. :D

post #1135 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdrm360 View Post
 

Since 14 months ago that I got my HD700, I've not seen these all fanatics on the HD700. :D

Hehehe... yeah, we are a fringe element that is slowly growing.

post #1136 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonido View Post


Do you have Crack already? If so, you should try adding the Quickie to your chain. Only $100. I felt it pulled far more weight for the sound signature than the Crack for my HD800. Someone else tried this combo with their T1 and reported noticeable improvement as well. Then again the HD700 is euphonic enough already and doesn't require the added euphony the Quickie gives. Though I did like adding the Quickie with my HE-500 and Emotiva chain as well. My new chain is the reason I would like to try the HD700 again. I was never too impressed by the WA7. My comparison of the HD700 with WA7 being 70% of my current HD800 chain can be misleading because it's not a direct comparison between the two headphones since they have different chains. I'm sure through my current Quickie Crack chain the HD700 would be closer to 90% of the HD800.

Not yet... I have it planned as a summer project to get my teenage son involved in helping me with it, both of us taking turns learning how to solder.  Yes, I have followed talk about a Quickie or BeePre with interest, but as you said, not sure I would need to add that to the mix.  I am hoping that starting with Crack/Speedball, then maybe adding a few tweaks and some tube rolling and then hope that I decide to just stay put.  Besides, I will have the extremely painful task of deciding what DAC to go with soon after that.  I am currently just on the Dragonfly 1.2 for now, will add the Crack this summer, and then next fall/winter put a better DAC in the mix and just use the Dragonfly at work or on the road.  I am dreaming about the Oppo HA-1 at the moment, but may look for something more modest that is strictly just a DAC as well.  All depends on if I think I really will spring for two or three high end phones over the next few years.

post #1137 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by Madmollusk View Post
 


I couldn't agree more.

 

There's a little group psychology at work here on Head-Fi sometimes: a knowledgeable reviewer with a facility with the English language can bias the entire community in one direction or another--at least for a little while. It's been said many times before, and it's rather cliché by now, but heck, I'll say it again: we all hear things differently.  That being acknowledged, I should hasten to add: the early criticisms heaped upon the HD700 genuinely mystify me. The HD700 is a huge step-up from the HD650, and though they are indeed "brighter" than neutral, and though the upper-midrange is just a tad recessed, it's clear that Sennheiser tuned these headphones to differentiate them from the HD 650 and the HD800.  

 

Actually, I can imagine some wily Sennheiser engineer saying: "Hey, wait a minute; there's an obvious omission in our mid and upper-tier headphones!" The HD600, after all, is on the warm side of neutral, while the HD650 boasts a sumptuously dark sound-signature.The HD800, on the other hand, with all its amazing newfangled tech, is as close to neutral as you're likely to find--IMHO.  It makes sense that Senn would add a little extra sparkle and thump to their next offering. And I am grateful for this. Don't misunderstand me: The HD 700 is still mostly neutral. The sound-signature is not "V" or "U" shaped; with the right equipment the treble is not at all "peaky" or "plasticky," or, for that matter, "fake sounding."  Indeed, with burn-in, the treble perfectly integrates itself into the broader frequency response. Can you tell: I love these headphones! I wouldn't argue with this criticism though: the HD700, at launch, with its initial price tag of 1k, was overpriced. Er, even $849 seems excessive.  But most likely, that's just my over-restricted budget talking. 

I mostly agree and IMHO the HD700s are the much-needed upgrade from the HD600/650 and have benefited a lot from the “trickled down technology” of the HD800.

Like with most manufacturers there is usually a good-better-best in each line and my time so far with the HD700 has not revealed any short comings and have been very linear in their presentation, at least in my setup, and if there was any blatant flaw I’m sure I would have discovered it by now and dismissed the 700s in short order.

There is no arguing which is technically the better phone but on their own the HD700s are very good and as we’ve seen preferred by some for various reasons.

Normally my habit is to join the discussions when I personally feel a product is worth getting excited about otherwise I move on, life is too short.

post #1138 of 7128

As much as I enjoy my HD700, I have concluded that the Beyerdynamic T90 simply scales much better and is more balanced for quite a bit less.

I mean honestly, the T90 is just a little less bright and peaky to my ears, and the low-end is just as good if not better than the HD700.

Having these two side-by-side, I'm nonetheless reluctant to give up either pair. Since both are equally beautiful :)

post #1139 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sil3nce View Post
 

As much as I enjoy my HD700, I have concluded that the Beyerdynamic T90 simply scales much better and is more balanced for quite a bit less.

I mean honestly, the T90 is just a little less bright and peaky to my ears, and the low-end is just as good if not better than the HD700.

Having these two side-by-side, I'm nonetheless reluctant to give up either pair. Since both are equally beautiful :)

 

The T90 is less bright!!! I like Beyerdynamic headphones but the T90 was really disappointing to me.

 

post #1140 of 7128
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdrm360 View Post
 

 

The T90 is less bright!!! I like Beyerdynamic headphones but the T90 was really disappointing to me.

 

I found the T90 to be extremely revealing and pleasing to listen to with the right source/amp.

Honestly, the Schiit lineups I had at the time simply didn't cut it.

Many people have mirrored my sentiments as well.

I guess they're one of the few phones that really need to synergize well. Hence, all the polarizing reviews.

I confirmed this when I ran them out of a soundcard on my laptop, and somehow I was getting more dynamic detail and a "fuller" sound as opposed to a discrete DAC/AMP combo.

This really makes me shake my head in amazement. Why on earth is a 250ohm pro-market open Tesla headphone so easily driven? And they sound good too. 

 

This would also be the case for the HD700s, some people find them disappointing on certain setups. Pretty crazy how the same headphones can be heard so many different ways haha? You would think that amps and dacs made more a difference than the sound signature of the headphones themselves with the degree of variation from these impressions.

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