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HE500 or LCD2 or both? (please share your impressions) Mini Review and POLL (please vote) - Page 24

Poll Results: If you could only keep one...?

 
  • 44% (110)
    HE500
  • 55% (139)
    LCD2 (either rev)
249 Total Votes  
post #346 of 491
Quote:
Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post

I personally think thats a good choice. I kept the LCD2 and he500 for about 8 months and was very happy with them as a pair. The HE500's offered a nice bit of light and air. But at the end of the day, they are both orthos and I was being seduced by the plannar sound. I kept the LCD2's mainly because they are soo damn good with jazz. But also I wanted a better hp for classical. You've obviously got that with the HD800's. I'll get them one day (when I'm in a better financial position), but for now I'm enjoying playing around with a few old classic hp's. Just picked up some new K701's. I used to have the K702's but must say they never sounded this good! Looks like my newly aquired DT880's might be going the distance after only a week... (sorry pp312)

 

I've done a bit of a review of the 'newer/old' k701's on the K702 65th anniversary thread if anyones interested.

The AKG 701 was my first headphone and I liked them a bunch. I decide on the LCD2.2  for the majority of music I listen to is jazz and female vocals, I listen to lots of classical and the hd800 is the best headphone for classical well recorded music so it made less sense for me to give up the vocal performance of the lcd2 but that he500 is the best value in the business no question about it. There is nothing in that pric erange that can compete with them  and if the hd800 wasnt her ethey would be because of the soundstage and air which it does so much better than the lcd2

post #347 of 491
Quote:
Originally Posted by LugBug1 View Post

I personally think thats a good choice. I kept the LCD2 and he500 for about 8 months and was very happy with them as a pair. The HE500's offered a nice bit of light and air. But at the end of the day, they are both orthos and I was being seduced by the plannar sound. I kept the LCD2's mainly because they are soo damn good with jazz. But also I wanted a better hp for classical. You've obviously got that with the HD800's. I'll get them one day (when I'm in a better financial position), but for now I'm enjoying playing around with a few old classic hp's. Just picked up some new K701's. I used to have the K702's but must say they never sounded this good! Looks like my newly aquired DT880's might be going the distance after only a week... (sorry pp312)

 

I've done a bit of a review of the 'newer/old' k701's on the K702 65th anniversary thread if anyones interested.

 

No problem, Lug. I too had a pair of 702s some years ago and hated them. Too bright and resonant; cymbals were like someone banging  a sheet of tin. But then I had the 880 a few years ago and quickly sold them off as well (but not before noticing how beautifully neutral and open they were. I sold them because of the treble peak, which seemed much, much worse back then). Think I might head over and check out your K701 review....

 

EDIT: Ok, just did that.

 

"I've been constantly focusing on the treble and in all honesty my veloured HE500's were brighter. What the AKG's do still have is the grainy treble. But that is inherent in most dynamics. Getting back to my DT880's, the treble on the beyers is brighter too. But the beyers have much better treble. It's as smooth as any dynamic I've heard. The 880's are also more detailed. But where the AKG's leave the beyers begind is in authority. They have great texture especially with acoustic instruments. A thicker more solid image. And then there is the soundstage which is... smaller than I remembered? But to my ears tonight, much more whole and coherent."

 

Interesting comments (not copyrighted, I hope tongue.gif), but I still wouldn't be able to gather from them which is the "better" headphone. Matching must have a lot to do with it. I've been using a NAD C326BEE with my 880 which sounds great but I have the treble at 10 O'Clock. I recently got an old Marantz SR4200 HT receiver, which has a reputation for a rich, warm sound, and found that I don't need to reduce the treble at all; there's no evidence of a peak. I can see now why people recommend tube amps with the 880, though I certainly won't be going that route.

 

You're right about a certain graininess being inherent with dynamics. I guess that's how the orthos excel--by getting rid of the grain.


Edited by pp312 - 2/15/13 at 6:00pm
post #348 of 491
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post

 

No problem, Lug. I too had a pair of 702s some years ago and hated them. Too bright and resonant; cymbals were like someone banging  a sheet of tin. But then I had the 880 a few years ago and quickly sold them off as well (but not before noticing how beautifully neutral and open they were. I sold them because of the treble peak, which seemed much, much worse back then). Think I might head over and check out your K701 review....

 

EDIT: Ok, just did that.

 

"I've been constantly focusing on the treble and in all honesty my veloured HE500's were brighter. What the AKG's do still have is the grainy treble. But that is inherent in most dynamics. Getting back to my DT880's, the treble on the beyers is brighter too. But the beyers have much better treble. It's as smooth as any dynamic I've heard. The 880's are also more detailed. But where the AKG's leave the beyers begind is in authority. They have great texture especially with acoustic instruments. A thicker more solid image. And then there is the soundstage which is... smaller than I remembered? But to my ears tonight, much more whole and coherent."

 

Interesting comments (not copyrighted, I hope tongue.gif), but I still wouldn't be able to gather from them which is the "better" headphone. Matching must have a lot to do with it. I've been using a NAD C326BEE with my 880 which sounds great but I have the treble at 10 O'Clock. I recently got an old Marantz SR4200 HT receiver, which has a reputation for a rich, warm sound, and found that I don't need to reduce the treble at all; there's no evidence of a peak. I can see now why people recommend tube amps with the 880, though I certainly won't be going that route.

 

You're right about a certain graininess being inherent with dynamics. I guess that's how the orthos excel--by getting rid of the grain.

Thanks pp, I've added a "and finally..." onto my little review just then :)

 

But why I've gone back to the AKG's is what they are famous for. 'A true to the recording sound' with big soundstage. It's not overly stretched or false in fact it sounds very coherent to me tonight. But it also sounds exciting! Fun! And adds that extra bit of space for those big orchestral peices. Piano is pretty much as near perfect that I've heard and I remember liking my K702's for this. These are great hp's if the recording is great. The DT880's in comparison are just a little too pollite. Great for string quartets and such but for big thick string sections the K701's are much more textured and airier. The 880's are 'nicer' more sympathetic to harder recordings. The AKG's tell it how it is. But if the recording is good.... Wowza.

post #349 of 491

Third update:

 

After several days with HD800, the sibilance I reported before is starting to disappear... I find it unbelievable since all my previous headphones sounded completely the same to my ears from the start. But with HD800, female vocals are really starting to improve towards more naturalness.

 

In general, after comparing LCD-2 and HD800 more, I must say that I am going to miss LCD-2... They are really good and I can clearly imagine a lot of people to prefer them over HD800. I don't find this airy and spatial sound of Senns to be ultimately superior. I actually admire that hard'n'heavy grounded sound of LCD-2, it's pretty unique... The fullness and natural approach is really entertaining!

 

That said, I just have to choose one pair and my vote goes towards the technically more advanced headphone... I feel that the sound itself is the most important factor (and always will be for me) but the exclusiveness of HD800 (being the best dynamic headphone in terms of technical quality available today) and outstanding comfort also plays a certain role in my decision.

 

Sennheiser HD800 are just among the best in too many categories to ignore that. I feel these are the better value, especially in Europe where you pay the same price for them as for LCD-2. Also, having HD800, I can easily forget LCD-3 since HD800 are technically superior to LCD-3 as well (while 2x cheaper in EU in comparison to the Audeze's flagship). And in terms of audiophile quality, these two are at least on par.

 

You cannot stop thinking about LCD-3 while having LCD-2 really... However, you can easily focus on upgrading the rest of your audio chain with HD800 because I cannot see any available dynamic headphone to outperform them to my ears. And going for SR-009 is completely out of my budget so it is just safe to choose HD800 and look forward to improving the rest of my gear. Maybe adding Smyth Realiser as well, hopefully...


Edited by RustA - 2/18/13 at 11:25am
post #350 of 491
Quote:
Originally Posted by RustA View Post

 

After several days with HD800, the sibilance I reported before is starting to disappear... I find it unbelievable since all my previous headphones sounded completely the same to my ears from the start. But with HD800, female vocals are really starting to improve towards more naturalness.

Told you wink.gif.  I didn't even listen to them while I was blasting them with pink noise for 2 days straight, so the burn-in effect was really jarring afterwards. The D600 is my only other phone that's changed that much with burn-in though, so I would say that you're right on average about it not having that much of an effect.

Also, I feel I should mention that I got to try out some LCD-3's briefly yesterday (finally). And I liked them, I could easily tell the difference between them and the LCD-2's, which was mainly the level of detail they have, and a smoother more even sounding treble. The bass was a bit disappointing though; it was certainly clear and textured and everything, but it was really just a lot like the HD800 bass (didn't even feel like it extended much further surprisingly), as opposed to like the LCD-2 (whose bass I think still has the upper hand in terms of quantity). So while I liked the LCD-3's more than the LCD-2's from my brief impressions, I didn't really feel they would be much of an upgrade from the HD800. A nice side-grade with a more 'natural' frequency curve perhaps, but not a 2x-the-price upgrade. Unlike the SR-009 which was a clear improvement from all the other cans, but I'm not even gonna go there... lol

post #351 of 491
Quote:
Originally Posted by oblique63 View Post

Told you wink.gif.  I didn't even listen to them while I was blasting them with pink noise for 2 days straight, so the burn-in effect was really jarring afterwards. The D600 is my only other phone that's changed that much with burn-in though, so I would say that you're right on average about it not having that much of an effect.

Also, I feel I should mention that I got to try out some LCD-3's briefly yesterday (finally). And I liked them, I could easily tell the difference between them and the LCD-2's, which was mainly the level of detail they have, and a smoother more even sounding treble. The bass was a bit disappointing though; it was certainly clear and textured and everything, but it was really just a lot like the HD800 bass (didn't even feel like it extended much further surprisingly), as opposed to like the LCD-2 (whose bass I think still has the upper hand in terms of quantity). So while I liked the LCD-3's more than the LCD-2's from my brief impressions, I didn't really feel they would be much of an upgrade from the HD800. A nice side-grade with a more 'natural' frequency curve perhaps, but not a 2x-the-price upgrade. Unlike the SR-009 which was a clear improvement from all the other cans, but I'm not even gonna go there... lol

 

Oh, that's actually pretty interesting! I do not really miss any more bass with HD800... Don't know if it's my pair but if I try to add more bass by EQing or tuning Jplay's settings, the sound gets too much muffled. I think HD800 are starting to settle down to more than reasonable neutrality... With LCD-2 rev2, their heavy bass is just a natural part of the whole sound signature... But with HD800, you really do not want to be distracted from their beautiful 3D soundstage. Still, I do really think HD800 sound beautiful with rock and metal, with more than enough bass!

 

As I find your posts to be a lot valuable here, could you answer my questions?

 

1) How LCD-3 compete in terms of soundstage with HD800? How would you describe both headphones in this regard?

2) How is the separation of voices, instruments, sounds? I find it pretty beautiful with HD800... You can study the music a lot because every instrument or sound gets enough space to shine fully.

3) I guess that David is right when he finds the imaging ability of HD800 to be clearly superior to LCD-3, right?

 

As I said, voices really start to sound natural with HD800... But I still feel that electric guitars are more entertaining or real with LCD-2 while you look at them rather analytically with HD800 (only in direct comparison). I guess LCD-3 should be a lot like LCD-2 here...

 

A thing to mention: With jplay, registry settings allow to correct imaging and overall soundstage outcome... It plays a big role with HD800 since you can reach a very natural soundstaging with one setting, and rather surround-like rendering with another. I am glad I can correct it and still stay bitperfect.


Edited by RustA - 2/18/13 at 1:37pm
post #352 of 491
Quote:
Originally Posted by RustA View Post

1) How LCD-3 compete in terms of soundstage with HD800? How would you describe both headphones in this regard?

2) How is the separation of voices, instruments, sounds? I find it pretty beautiful with HD800... You can study the music a lot because every instrument or sound gets enough space to shine fully.

3) I guess that David is right when he finds the imaging ability of HD800 to be clearly superior to LCD-3, right?

 

1) It's not even a competition really, the HD800's are tough to beat here. The LCD-3 does have a really nice soundstage, I'd even say was on par with some of the 'lower-end' electrostats, but it's still got a very Left/Right feel to it, as opposed to the HD800's surround sound semi-circle you described. So as you may have figured out by now, that means that the depth isn't as good either. I didn't feel the difference in depth from the LCD-2 to the LCD-3 was as great as the difference in width; the LCD-3 still had a bit more depth, but it didn't seem like a night/day thing.

 

2) Pretty much the same story as in question 1. Really solid separation, clearly nicer than the LCD-2, but overall, more on-par with my hifimans than the HD800's.

 

3) Yes, I would certainly agree with him there.

 

The LCD-3 is a really nice phone and clearly flagship material, but it just wasn't much of a new/'wow' experience listening to them (I think the T1 suffers from this effect as well). If you've listened to the LCD-2 before, the natural sound of the LCD-3's isn't gonna 'wow' you, even though it is evidently nicer. And if you've tried HD800's before, the details of the LCD-3 aren't gonna 'wow' you either, even though they are pretty good (somewhere around HE-6 territory in terms of detail, but not quite). So unless you really like that super 'natural', smoother Audeze sound, and strongly dislike the sound of its competitors somehow, the LCD-3 just seems to be a bit overpriced for what it is. Do note that I didn't get to spend a ton of time with them, so some salt might go well with this comment, but I will say that I'm no longer really interested in possibly getting one when I could put that money towards an electrostat or something.


Edited by oblique63 - 2/18/13 at 3:03pm
post #353 of 491
Quote:
Originally Posted by oblique63 View Post

 

1) It's not even a competition really, the HD800's are tough to beat here. The LCD-3 does have a really nice soundstage, I'd even say was on par with some of the 'lower-end' electrostats, but it's still got a very Left/Right feel to it, as opposed to the HD800's surround sound semi-circle you described. So as you may have figured out by now, that means that the depth isn't as good either. I didn't feel the difference in depth from the LCD-2 to the LCD-3 was as great as the difference in width; the LCD-3 still had a bit more depth, but it didn't seem like a night/day thing.

 

2) Pretty much the same story as in question 1. Really solid separation, clearly nicer than the LCD-2, but overall, more on-par with my hifimans than the HD800's.

 

3) Yes, I would certainly agree with him there.

 

The LCD-3 is a really nice phone and clearly flagship material, but it just wasn't much of a new/'wow' experience listening to them (I think the T1 suffers from this effect as well). If you've listened to the LCD-2 before, the natural sound of the LCD-3's isn't gonna 'wow' you, even though it is evidently nicer. And if you've tried HD800's before, the details of the LCD-3 aren't gonna 'wow' you either, even though they are pretty good (somewhere around HE-6 territory in terms of detail, but not quite). So unless you really like that super 'natural', smoother Audeze sound, and strongly dislike the sound of its competitors somehow, the LCD-3 just seems to be a bit overpriced for what it is. Do note that I didn't get to spend a ton of time with them, so some salt might go well with this comment, but I will say that I'm no longer really interested in possibly getting one when I could put that money towards an electrostat or something.

 

Thank you very much... I am aware of your rather brief listening session but these things like soundstage, imaging, separation comes to your mind immediately, at least in my experience.

 

Your impressions are very similar to what David described in his BIG article... I think I did a good thing getting HD800 then!

post #354 of 491
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dubstep Girl View Post

saw the price, really considering selling my D7000 now, though im not sure since i love my denons too.

 

I had both and thought that the HE500 spanked the D7000.  They don't have the slam of the D7000, but the bass sounded more cohesive from sub-bass to mids and they do have a little of that D7000 sizzle without ever becoming too sharp.  LCD-2 r2 would actually be a better D7000 replacement, but I see you already have those..

post #355 of 491
Thread Starter 

Has anyone else tried the HE500 or LCD2 with the schitt Magni yet? I'd be interested in your thoughts. It seems to work very well with the LCD2's... better than the Asgard (from memory) It has just the right amount of sparkle and power to make the Audeze sound fast and energetic. Very transparent with source too.

post #356 of 491

Argh after reading this thread I really want to buy a HE-500.  While I love my LCD-2.2, their biggest weakness that's glaring to me at least is their lack of sparkle up top.

The dark signature of the LCD-2.2 really helps when listening to those extremely bright recordings, but when you listen to less bright recordings then you miss sparkle in the treble.

I was planning to buy an HD800 in the near future, but now I'm not sure.  HE-500 or HD800

 

My wallet ;_;

post #357 of 491

Tough choice.  I'll take the HD800s over the HE-500s with the right setup.  Saying that,  the HE-500s are a really good headphone and you can't go wrong with it..  

 

By the way.  I'll take the HE-500s any day of the week over the LCD-2.2s  

 

But not the LCD-3s...biggrin.gif


Edited by preproman - 2/19/13 at 7:07pm
post #358 of 491
Quote:
Originally Posted by hiyu64 View Post

Argh after reading this thread I really want to buy a HE-500.  While I love my LCD-2.2, their biggest weakness that's glaring to me at least is their lack of sparkle up top.

The dark signature of the LCD-2.2 really helps when listening to those extremely bright recordings, but when you listen to less bright recordings then you miss sparkle in the treble.

I was planning to buy an HD800 in the near future, but now I'm not sure.  HE-500 or HD800

 

My wallet ;_;

HD800 is the polar opposite of HD800 in tonality (both have very very flat bass-midrange, but LCD2 has a broadly depressed treble while HD800 has a broadly elevated treble). The risk, as you can realize, would be that while you feel LCD2 delivers too little sparkle, HD800 might give you too much. HE500 is about smack dead in the middle of the two in terms of treble levels.

 

Same thing in terms of openness; LCD2s are compressed and have a "wall of sound" effect, while HD800s are expanded and have an almost absurdly large 3D projected soundstage. HE500s are in-between the two again, however closer to LCD2 than HD800 in this respect.


Edited by jerg - 2/19/13 at 7:06pm
post #359 of 491
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post

HD800 is the polar opposite of HD800 in tonality

 

 

That's certainly surprising.

post #360 of 491
Quote:
Originally Posted by pp312 View Post


That's certainly surprising.
Your honor, this is badgering the passionate. We all know the two HD800s in question were from different batches tongue.gif
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