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Question(s) - HD580/HD600/HD650 (ear pads etc..)

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I recently purchased a pair of HD580s basically from an estate sale.  I have replaced the grills with HD600 grills.  The headpad was worn out, and I so I swapped it for an Orpheus replacement.  The only replaceable item at this point is essentially the earpads.  I have compared them to my friend's fairly new HD650s.  My pads seem a smidgen squishier but not enough to justify the ~$60 pricetag for the replacements.  While removing the earpads to clean them (the former owner had abundant dandruff -- YUCK!) I happened to notice something about the earpads.

 

Here are my questions:

  1. Are the HD580/600/650 ear pads 100% symmetrical?
  2. How big of a difference can sound change from new pads vs wore out pads?

 

The reason I ask is after closer examination of the earpads, I noticed mine are not symmetrical.  I am not quite sure of the original orientation of the pads, but I am pretty sure that the previous owner never removed the pads... not once.  On each pad, one side of the pad, the foam is angled more outward from the center, where the opposite side orients straight up -- think perpendicular to the driver on one side and angled outward on the other.  I figure it almost certainly has to be from wear, but who knows.

post #2 of 5

The pads are never 100% symmetrical, but when new they should be pretty close IIRC.

 

Sound changes can be quite drastic with new pads. When comparing HD580s to HD600s, swapping the pads of the two swapped the sound signature of the two cans. Likewise, new pads on either gave a third, different sound signature.

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the response.  I appreciate the input.  Might need to invest in the pair of new pads -- if for no other reason than my germophobia eek.gif

post #4 of 5

They're close to symmetrical when new, but when used they develop that shape, but how severe it is depends on how you wear the headphones - how tight, where the pads touch your cheek and behind the ear down to the jaw, etc. I wear mine with the top and rear just around the earlobe with about six clicks extension off the default position on the headband on each side, so the top down nearly the entire length of the front is flatter than the rest of the earpads on both sides.

post #5 of 5
They aren't perfectly symmetrical, but will look symmetrical at first blush. I honestly forget what the correct orientation is - one side is more shallow and I forget if it's meant to go forwards or backwards. Honestly I never noticed that big of a change trying it either way on my HD 580...redface.gif

Having said that, pads do make a difference sonically, and if these are ratty and shredded, or completely flat, they will not be doing you any favors. I'd probably vote new pads if these are really nasty - you can wash them, but still...yuck.
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Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › Question(s) - HD580/HD600/HD650 (ear pads etc..)