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HifiMAN HE-5LE v. HE-500 - Page 4

post #46 of 127

Pataburd,

 

 a question:

 

A friend is getting delivery of the He-6's in a week or so,

He will,for the time being,be using the Schiit Lyr,to drive them.

Can you tell me,if these carry enough power,and,if not..what would you recommend?

I see,in your profile,you have serious selection of phones & amps..

 

Thanks

Mike

post #47 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikek200 View Post

Pataburd,

 

 a question:

 

A friend is getting delivery of the He-6's in a week or so,

He will,for the time being,be using the Schiit Lyr,to drive them.

Can you tell me,if these carry enough power,and,if not..what would you recommend?

I see,in your profile,you have serious selection of phones & amps..

 

Thanks

Mike

 

 

Speaker amps

post #48 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post

 

 

Speaker amps

Yep, leaning towards the J2 and possibly RSA Stealth Pre-Amp/Headphone Amp.

post #49 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by paradoxper View Post

Yep, leaning towards the J2 and possibly RSA Stealth Pre-Amp/Headphone Amp.

 

 

Using the Stealths volume control for the J2?

post #50 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post

 

 

Using the Stealths volume control for the J2?

That would be the idea. Though..I am pretty noob when it comes to pre amp functions. Some of the recommendations

I got were out of the budget, unless I were to decline to upgrade the headphone amp rig. And that isn't happening.

 

I'm looking for a very clean and transparent setup for my HE-6.

 

I'd be open to any other options you may see fit. biggrin.gif

post #51 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by paradoxper View Post

That would be the idea. Though..I am pretty noob when it comes to pre amp functions. Some of the recommendations

I got were out of the budget, unless I were to decline to upgrade the headphone amp rig. And that isn't happening.

 

I'm looking for a very clean and transparent setup for my HE-6.

 

I'd be open to any other options you may see fit. biggrin.gif

 

 

Well your J2 is going to need a DAC and volume control.  I suppose you also want some other kind of rig for your other headphones correct?

 

For your HE-6 rig I would go (your choice of DAC) > either one of these for Volume control

http://www.nhthifi.com/PVC_Pro_XLR_professional_passive_volume_control ) or ( http://www.goldpt.com/sa1x.html ) > J2

 

Those volume controls are only recommend if your DAC does not have one like the Anedio D2.

 

For your other headphones, well the choices are unlimited.

post #52 of 127
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikek200 View Post

Pataburd,

 

 a question:

 

A friend is getting delivery of the He-6's in a week or so,

He will,for the time being,be using the Schiit Lyr,to drive them.

Can you tell me,if these carry enough power,and,if not..what would you recommend?

I see,in your profile,you have serious selection of phones & amps..

 

Thanks

Mike

Mike,

A speaker amp.

 

I have two integrateds on hand: the Linn Intek and the Qinpu X-1.0A.  Neither my suped up Bada nor the surprisingly up-to-the-task (for the 5LE) KMF are up to adequately driving the HE-6, I'm afraid.

 

Am also looking at some vintage Marantz gear.  Ultimately, I would like to find a pair of the Kora Titan (all tube) monoblocks.

 

Patrick


Edited by pataburd - 7/25/12 at 3:56am
post #53 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post

 

 

Well your J2 is going to need a DAC and volume control.  I suppose you also want some other kind of rig for your other headphones correct?

 

For your HE-6 rig I would go (your choice of DAC) > either one of these for Volume control

http://www.nhthifi.com/PVC_Pro_XLR_professional_passive_volume_control ) or ( http://www.goldpt.com/sa1x.html ) > J2

 

Those volume controls are only recommend if your DAC does not have one like the Anedio D2.

 

For your other headphones, well the choices are unlimited.

Sorry about that. I should have specified that the DAC is the only part for the HE-6 I'm already for sure on.

The J2 and pre-amp are high choices, but I'm not 100% certain about price > performance.

 

And yea, my other headphone rig won't be upgraded til the end of the year.

post #54 of 127

I prefer HE-5LE, although I completely understand the appeal towards the balance of the HE-500. I just like very hot treble and I think the power consumption of the HE-5LE means you have an excuse to buy a great amp for it.

 

Therefore with my logic, the average HE-5LE owner's setup is probably going to be better than an HE-500 owner's setup due to the minimum requirements for sonic enjoyment.

 

For example the HE-5LE was my excuse to buy a Lyr, that was probably one of the highlights of my audio career so far.

 

1000


Edited by Chris_Himself - 7/25/12 at 11:32pm
post #55 of 127

I was pretty dead set on moving from the HE-500 to the HE-5LE (to get better balance and neutrality) .. until recently.  A few of us have taken to lightly, non-invasively modding the HE-500 grills & fabric mesh.  Just removing the mesh on the HE-500 opened up the soundstage and brought more air to the treble.. which sounded lovely to my ears.  That has effectively put my HE-5LE desire on hold.  The HE-500 probably still isn't as neutral as the LE, but I'm certainly more happy with it now.

 

Still, I want to hear the HE-5LE, though.  Chris.. may be we do a little audition swap in a few weeks.. my Paradox & your HE-5LE?


Edited by FlySweep - 7/26/12 at 12:06am
post #56 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post

I was pretty dead set on moving from the HE-500 to the HE-5LE (to get better balance and neutrality) .. until recently.  A few of us have taken to lightly, non-invasively modding the HE-500 grills & fabric mesh.  Just removing the mesh on the HE-500 opened up the soundstage and brought more air to the treble.. which sounded lovely to my ears.  That has effectively put my HE-5LE desire on hold.  The HE-500 probably still isn't as neutral as the LE, but I'm certainly more happy with it now.

 

Still, I want to hear the HE-5LE, though.  Chris.. may be we do a little audition swap in a few weeks.. my Paradox & your HE-5LE?

 

Oh I just bought the LCD-2 Rev 2's direct from Audeze. I don't own either of the HE's any more. I just bought both to see what world class sound sounds like. I prefer both to the LCD-2 which I will get flamed horribly for saying. I think I just liked the Silver Dragon cable I had with them honestly. I just pop in to talk about the headphones because I was really pleased with the sound and they introduced me to god-tier audio. I'm still getting used to the lack of bass at this level though.

 

1000

 

 

In retrospect, the HE-500 is my definition of neutral, neutral should be a little dark, music isn't supposed to hurt your ears like K701, DT-880, and Grado SR-60 (it gets better with the 80 and up). Those engineers have to listen to those tracks more than the consumer does, so they'd pick it up sooner and fix it if anything right?

 

The HE-5LE in comparison is a hot-headed version. I think if the HE-500 came out first, the HE-5LE would've have actually been considered an upgrade to some. Detail is equal on both cans, it's just a matter of treble and some bass. Both headphones are rather receptive to cable upgrades actually making the $200 entry price to something like a Moon Silver Dragon (which is what I used with that setup). I spend the extra money so I can talk about cables without advertising my own stuff btw. HE-500 is the natural choice, with the HE-5LE being the more adventurous option.

 

I didn't even realize the HE-5LE was a lot cheaper to buy until now.. I had some friends sell me both models for a low price I won't disclose.

post #57 of 127
Thread Starter 

I would qualify your "detail is equal" statement by saying that--to my ears--the HE-500 lack the extension and dynamic balance of the HE-5LE, especially in the upper treble.  Cymbal finishes with the 500 have more of "shadowy" or "feathered" effect, as though the listener is getting only faint traces of the information that seem to be vaporizing out at the edges, compared to the 5LE.

 

This is purely a matter of listening styles/preferences, I agree.  My preferences have nearly always favored a more revealing treble versus a more prominent bass. In the case between the HE-500 and the HE-5LE, the 5LE do concede some midbass presence and detail to the 500, but the 500's high frequency roll-off and their comparative lack of overall spectral balance/coherency were the chiefest points of departure for me (and what ultimately finalized my preference for the 5LE).

 

My ears do not hear the HE-500 as "neutral"--a dubious term on these threads--either.  They have a treble roll-off, a midbass emphasis and a deliciously sweet midrange color.


Edited by pataburd - 7/26/12 at 12:14pm
post #58 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by pataburd View Post

I would qualify your "detail is equal" statement by saying that--to my ears--the HE-500 lack the extension and dynamic balance of the HE-5LE, especially in the upper treble.  Cymbal finishes with the 500 have more of "shadowy" or "fluttering" effect, as though the listener is getting only faint traces of the information, compared to the 5LE.

 

This is purely a matter of listening styles/preferences, I agree.  My preferences have nearly always favored a more revealing treble versus a more prominent bass. In the case between the HE-500 and the HE-5LE, the 5LE do concede some midbass presence and detail to the 500, but the 500's high frequency roll-off and their comparative lack of overall spectral balance/coherency were the chiefest points of departure for me (and what ultimately finalized my preference for the 5LE).

 

My ears do not hear the HE-500 as "neutral"--a dubious term on these threads--either.  They have a treble roll-off, a midbass emphasis and a deliciously sweet midrange color.

 

You're definitely more experienced than I am, which is somewhat rare for me to encounter on this forum outside of the contributor guys.

 

Where neutral is to a person definitely depends on the range of headphones they've experienced and their perception of "normal". While you and I clearly both agree on the tonal differences on the headphones, our perception of a baseline "neutral" sound is really just off by one notch. That being the difference between two slightly similar headphones.

 

If you prefer a more analytical approach to neutral, you prefer something very airy and light so you don't have to mentally filter the other parts of the response curve to get to the whispy details that might elude you with darker headphones. I get that for sure.

 

To me headphones like HD600, HE-500, LCD-2, K601 (even darker than the HE-500) are neutral. All of these have a slight treble rolloff to maintain the ease of listening. I think at any point when it becomes a little harsh, especially to my younger ears, I'd want to back down from those particular headphones.

post #59 of 127
Thread Starter 

     Well said, Chris.

     Before moving to the HE-6, I want to try a cable upgrade for the 5LE.  Might get the HE-6 4-pin XLR OCC cable for starters.  (Might even give one of yours a go!)  The one that came with the 5LE is, if anything, probably detracting from their capability.  

     Besides cable changes, tube changes with the Bada PH-12 were another way to "tailor" the HE-500's response.  For me (and again, for my listening preferences which have always veered toward what many consider the "bright" side) the HE-500 sounded best with tubes (like the Sylvania VT-231) and cables (like the Soundsilver Trilogy) that drew out and better resolved the treble end of things.

     What is really nice about either the HE-500 or the HE-5LE is that they both are very, very responsive to system changes of practically any kind.  Moving between different sources, amps, tubes, cables and even tweaks is a testament to the HifiMAN's ability to extract, deliver and fastidiously account for everything coming to them from uptream.  


Edited by pataburd - 7/26/12 at 12:15pm
post #60 of 127
Thread Starter 

Reflections on what "neutrality" means to me: "Neutrality is achieved when one listens to and is engaged with the source rather than the headphones themselves."

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