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HD800 vs HE500 - Page 59

post #871 of 1025

Gratz on the HD800 purchase.  Too bad the HD600 and HE500 didn't work out for you.  I personally find the HE500 having just as much details as the HD800 for the music genres to which I listen. HD800 does have better instrument separation and better soundstage+imaging though.  Enjoy your HD800!

 

Sorry for your wallet.  :D

post #872 of 1025
On the cheap, I can easily recommend the Matrix M-Stage HPA-2 (with USB DAC if you don't need 2 analog inputs). $280-320. Up from there the Mjolnir does a good job at $750 (but is balanced only) and if you can find a used Decware CSP2+ that is an excellent option at sub $1k. The M-Stage is the best unbalanced under $1k I've heard yet with the HD800. It is not so great for other headphones, but does manage to have synergies with cans like HD800 and K701 that are mystifying.
post #873 of 1025
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maxvla View Post

On the cheap, I can easily recommend the Matrix M-Stage HPA-2 (with USB DAC if you don't need 2 analog inputs). $280-320. Up from there the Mjolnir does a good job at $750 (but is balanced only) and if you can find a used Decware CSP2+ that is an excellent option at sub $1k. The M-Stage is the best unbalanced under $1k I've heard yet with the HD800. It is not so great for other headphones, but does manage to have synergies with cans like HD800 and K701 that are mystifying.

Thanks.  It looks like the M-Stage HPA-1 is available for $230 on Amazon - is there a significant sound quality difference?

post #874 of 1025
The amp section is mostly the same but they did change the output impedance from 15ohm to 10ohm. This won't affect HD800s that much, but it will affect lower impedance headphones. This also leads the HPA-2 to run a bit hotter as it is pushing out more power than the HPA-1. Amp only version has the above changes and somewhat improved cosmetics. If you are getting the DAC version (highly recommended), the HPA-2 is worlds better than the HPA-1. I also recommend changing the opamp from the stock OPA2134 to an LT1364 for HD800. It plays to HD800s strengths giving a slight increase in quality, IMO. Opamps are just a few dollars, so it's worth a try.

I'd look at buying direct from Matrix USA as well. Arthur is very responsive and helpful, he can also get answers directly from Matrix engineers should you need (as I have).
Edited by Maxvla - 1/26/14 at 5:36pm
post #875 of 1025
For a tube amp, try the bottle head crack. It is great with hd800 for not very much $.
post #876 of 1025
Quote:
Originally Posted by willjbryan View Post
 

Got an open-box HD-800 today for $1200 and couldn't be happier.  I had been looking for a headphone to keep my wife from complaining about my listening too loudly to my living room speaker setup, which is an NAD316BEE with Paradigm Studio 10 bookshelves and which suits me perfectly.  In the past week I bought and returned both the HD-600 and the HE-500, in the hopes that I wouldn't need to spend as much as I ended up spending.  Running everything off the headphone out from my NAD receiver, the HD-600 and the HE-500 just didn't convey enough detail/clarity for me in comparison to the Paradigms, but the HD-800 is on another plane entirely and is 95% as good as sitting in the Paradigms' sweet spot.  I found the sibilance/6khz frequency peak to render them almost completely unlistenable, but it's easily EQ-ed away.

 

Now I just need to find a good headphone amp - I tried several at my local audio store, but none are as good as the receiver.

 

I haven't anything as good as my NAD's with the HD800 either :) 

 

(Granted I haven't heard them with any high end hp amps though.)

post #877 of 1025

Yeah the NAD really works well with them.  The NAD with my speakers also serves as a pretty easy reference point for neutral frequency response.  I've spent the past few days tuning software equalizer settings for the HD800 to match what I hear out of my speakers on the same amp.  I don't have an acoustically-treated room, but the post-equalization HD800 (with way less treble) is much more natural to my ears and less fatiguing than prior to modification.  

post #878 of 1025
Quote:
Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post
 

 

I haven't anything as good as my NAD's with the HD800 either :) 

 

(Granted I haven't heard them with any high end hp amps though.)

 

What Nad You're talking about please ? :smile:

post #879 of 1025
First amp listed in his profile... NAD 3020i
post #880 of 1025
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sorrodje View Post
 

 

What Nad You're talking about please ? :smile:

Bare in mind that its a personal preference ;)

 

To be exact, its mid to late 80's NAD. 3020e - 3020i - 3130 and 7130 receiver.  

 

The older classic (1979) 3020 and receiver equivalents are warmer and a little too thick sounding. The late 80's models are still 'NAD warm' but with much better depth and resolution. I find them a lovely match. 

post #881 of 1025

Thks Lugbug1 ;)

 

@Maxvla: I read Lugbug1 profile many times but I couldn't identify what Amp he talked about for HD800 ;)

post #882 of 1025

I missed this thread. no activity since two weeks ago. :( 

post #883 of 1025
Quote:
Originally Posted by K-Otar View Post
 

I missed this thread. no activity since two weeks ago. :( 

Perhaps this thread has run its course and some people have the fight beat out of them. :veryevil:

post #884 of 1025
Quote:
Originally Posted by StanD View Post
 

Perhaps this thread has run its course and some people have the fight beat out of them. :veryevil:

Or that the HE-500s are discontinued (or will be shortly). 

post #885 of 1025
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacedonianHero View Post
 

Or that the HE-500s are discontinued (or will be shortly). 

They said that about the HD600's and they're still going strong.

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