or Connect
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Summit-Fi (High-End Audio) › High-end Audio Forum › The (new) HD800 Impressions Thread
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

The (new) HD800 Impressions Thread - Page 639

post #9571 of 24341
Quote:
Originally Posted by purrin View Post
 

And the HD800 still sells like hotcakes. I'm surprised Sennheiser hasn't raised the price to $1999.


Does it?

 

Amazon had sellout end of last year priced at $889. While some say it was a price mistake, no orders were cancelled and the serial numbers on the ones we got were a few thousand less than the current production you'd get buying elsewhere. Razordog Audio still has them in stock despite having a 20% off sale ($1200) since a month because they're no longer supplying them and the stock they have is the last of it.

post #9572 of 24341

That was an Amazon error-happens all the time. Lasted like a day tops, iirc. Senn is around the 30k serial now-which is insane seeing as they were the first ones selling a non-stat for over a grand-way over actually at 1.5k. It's gonna be hard for them to top the HD800 imo, which is why I think a planar or stat may be their next complementary flagship imo.

 

-Daniel

post #9573 of 24341
HD800s were $1300 when they first came out, then raised to $1500, but yes, they're over 30k now. Compare that to LCD2/3/X combined and I'd be very surprised if it is even 1/3 of that number.
post #9574 of 24341

Yeah I got mine during that Amazon sale last December and it was 25XXX. That's why I think it could be a sellout of slow inventory.

post #9575 of 24341
Quote:
Originally Posted by purrin View Post
 

Well maybe it's the Questyle DAC which is craptastic. Now I wish I pulled the two units apart to determine which was the culprit, or at least how the craptastic-ness was distributed. Bah, just buy an HDVD800. Doesn't compare to the best, but pretty darn good with excellent synergy with the HD800; and at a "reasonable" price too for the package. Sexy looking box too.

 

ADD: Use balanced from the HDVD800. The single ended out is gimp.

 

Purrin,

 

Have you heard the BHA-1 with the HD800? If so, do you prefer the HDVD800 to the Bryston, or is it the other way around?

post #9576 of 24341

Marv, as you know from our prior conversations on this subject, I've never made any attempt to mod my 800s, because the peak at 6K doesn't bother me.  I've thought about why it doesn't bother me, and it seems like there are three possibilities.

 

(1) Due to my extreme ancientness and decrepitude, my hearing is rolled off at the top.

 

(2) I am actually hearing the effects of the peak at 6K, but for unique-to-me psychoacoustic reasons (a fancy way of saying my personal preferences in how things sound), it doesn't bother me.

 

(3) There's nothing much to hear at 6K.

 

Before you scoff at (3), consider the following.

 

I'm not aware of a single musical instrument that produces fundamentals at 6K.  The highest key on a piano is 4186 at concert pitch.  The highest note on the E string of a violin in seventh position is the third A above middle C, which is 1760 at concert pitch.  A piccolo gets to around 3500.  Maybe you could blow an overtone on a soprano sax, or do some weird overblowing thing on an oboe, that would get you above 3K.  But that's pretty much it.

 

So what's at 6K?  Well, the second harmonic of 1500; but how much of a typical piece of music resides in the third octave above middle C (OK, you've got me on the Barber Adagio for Strings, but other than that ...)? 

 

What you find at 6K is primarily third and higher-order harmonics and some transient information.  That's not nothing, but looking at a random sample of tracks from my collection in Audacity, what's at 6K is typically about 30dB down from what's in the octaves around middle C

 

Is an artificial boost of a few dB in that area really all that critical?  And if so, why?

post #9577 of 24341
Quote:
Originally Posted by 62ohm View Post
 

 

Purrin,

 

Have you heard the BHA-1 with the HD800? If so, do you prefer the HDVD800 to the Bryston, or is it the other way around?

 

Yes. Maxvla was kind enough to lend a friend and I his BHA-1 for a period of time. The BHA-1 was auditioned with the PWD2 DAC running fw 2.03. The BHA-1 has a very delineated attack in the treble. You would think this works against with the HD800, but it doesn't. This nature is really totally different and separate from the 5-6k peak of the HD800. The staging of the BHA-1 was somewhat close, but had good depth, at least for a solid-state amp. Bass had a good amount of power and impact, although not quite in the realm of the best. Downsides were that differences between balanced and singled ended inputs didn't really matter much (this is really minor), the bass was slower relative to the super fast treble, and if the amp got hot on a consistent basis, the bass would get kind of mushy (this was a major detractor). If you live in a cold or cool climate, I would highly recommend the BHA-1. My room upstairs where we auditioned it as over 90F and we intentional left the BHA-1 on for several hours for it to really heat up before listening. This is behavior of the sound getting softer or mushy with higher temps is actually not BS with the MOSFETs used in the BHA-1. I've heard this behavior with other amps.

 

The HDVD800 has a smoother less delineated sound, although I wouldn't call it dull. More like liquid. Using the balanced outs, I was very impressed with its imaging, separation, layering, depth, etc. for a solid-state device because it approached that of a good tube amp. The HDVD800 was just a tad less lively sounding and less resolving than the BHA-1 + PWD2 (fw 2.03) combo. What the HDVD800 does well it that its an amp/DAC package that meshes well with the HD800. Very refined and lots of grace. Maybe too much? The BHA-1 could have more potential, but may require a matching good DAC to reach that potential.


Edited by purrin - 3/27/14 at 12:10am
post #9578 of 24341

purrin - have you heard the HDVD600? How good is that amp isolated from Senn's DAC? Curious how it compares to the MJ.

post #9579 of 24341
It worked for me. Though the air in my house stays a comfortable 70-75 F year round. wink.gif
post #9580 of 24341
Quote:
Originally Posted by purrin View Post
 

 

Yes. Maxvla was kind enough to lend a friend and I his BHA-1 for a period of time. The BHA-1 was auditioned with the PWD2 DAC running fw 2.03. The BHA-1 has a very delineated attack in the treble. You would think this works against with the HD800, but it doesn't. This nature is really totally different and separate from the 5-6k peak of the HD800. The staging of the BHA-1 was somewhat close, but had good depth, at least for a solid-state amp. Bass had a good amount of power and impact, although not quite in the realm of the best. Downsides were that differences between balanced and singled ended inputs didn't really matter much (this is really minor), the bass was slower relative to the super fast treble, and if the amp got hot on a consistent basis, the bass would get kind of mushy (this was a major detractor). If you live in a cold or cool climate, I would highly recommend the BHA-1. My room upstairs where we auditioned it as over 90F and we intentional left the BHA-1 on for several hours for it to really heat up before listening. This is behavior of the sound getting softer or mushy with higher temps is actually not BS with the MOSFETs used in the BHA-1. I've heard this behavior with other amps.

 

The HDVD800 has a smoother less delineated sound, although I wouldn't call it dull. More like liquid. Using the balanced outs, I was very impressed with its imaging, separation, layering, depth, etc. for a solid-state device because it approached that of a good tube amp. The HDVD800 was just a tad less lively sounding and less resolving than the BHA-1 + PWD2 (fw 2.03) combo. What the HDVD800 does well it that its an amp/DAC package that meshes well with the HD800. Very refined and lots of grace. Maybe too much? The BHA-1 could have more potential, but may require a matching good DAC to reach that potential.

 

Thanks for the impressions mate, been wondering about this for quite a while now.

post #9581 of 24341

I'm the italics :)

Quote:

Originally Posted by purrin View Post
 

 

I agree that the HD800 is the most resolving can out there. However, I would not dare say that treble peaks are a prerequisite for high resolution. There's no correlation to this. Some Ultrasones have peaks in the treble. They sound harsh, unrefined, without even the slightest ability of the HD800. Similar experience with the AKG K812. The K812 has a peak around 7kHz. Guess what? It's horrible in the resolution department. I had a chance to compare the K812 directly to the "lowly" HD600 last week. The K812 simply drops off huge amounts of low level information in tracks such as the Eagles Live Hotel CA, Pixies Brick is Red. Pretty much on every track, little details such as string decay, ambient cues, tape noise, etc. All gone... blank... on the K812. The HD600 exhibits no such peak. It's response is even less bright than the HD800. Then how does it still resolve so well? Finally, I hear no less capability of modded or EQ'd HD800s to extract microdetail.

 

I would say that the peaks of the HD800 are what gives them the extra resolution (or impression of more details). But as you say bad peaks can do more harm than good. Resolution for me is clarity/detail. E/Qing the HD800 where the peaks are - dulls them in my experience and the detail/clarity starts to get lost in that particular area. I know the HD600's very well and they simply don't have the same level of detail/clarity as the HD800 (have no idea about the K812 but any headphone that drops off huge amounts of low level detail with a pop track shouldn't even be welcome on head-fi nevermind a high end discussion!!). The resolution is very good, but when it comes to anything with layering (such as complex orchestral music) they blur in comparison to the 800's. Without the peaks of the HD800 (dulled by EQ) the trebles of brass for e.g can start to amalgamate into a one treble - can sound like a multitude of one instrument instead of more colours and variants. This could be argued as  'higher contrast' rather than 'natural resolution' but I don't hear anything unnatural when wearing the HD800 over a headphone such as the HD600. But one defo sounds duller than the other. Not one sounding too bright over the other. 

 

How would you know? You've admitted that you've never heard the mods to the HD800. More on this later... (BTW, I would not consider the new Daft Punk record a good recording. Too much bass and lower end.)

 

A bit pedantic my friend I made the disclaimer and it was a theoretical argument :) The Daft Punk record is a good modern pop recording as it can be played at very high volume without losing clarity (cars, nightclubs etc). I certainly wouldn't want my Jazz to be recorded this way... But you get my point ;)

 

 

Bad recordings, specifically bright ones, will sound bad on even less bright headphones such as HD600, HE-500, Abyss, UERM, Paradox, etc. No need for an HD800 for that. However, recordings of marginal quality, that is which are marginally bright, will do OK with the HD600, HE-500, Abyss, UERM, Paradox, but end up as quite difficult on the HD800. It's really not so black and white. One thing I've noted is that there is a strong tendency of HD800 fans to blindly blame only the recording when in fact its really a combination of the recording and the HD800.

 

95% of recordings sound great on the HD600 compared to a lot of other quality headphones. They are very ear friendly without treble peaks.

 

Ofcourse it is a combination of the recording and the HD800. The HD800 is letting you hear how bad the recording is!! :D 

 

:beerchug:  

 

 

post #9582 of 24341
As some here may know. I use all three kinds of musical reproduction . CIEM, HEADPHONES AND SPEAKERS.

As we approach a ultra hi end form of sound reproduction. The chain becomes much more sensitive to all devices in it.
As such of course music content is at the beginning of the chain. Now with a headphone like hd800 it is very much helping show you the good the bad and the ugly. A headphone like the lcd3 is far better suited for lesser recordings
But if you want to hear it all , thT is what this thread is about. So it's a virtue not a curse.
Al
post #9583 of 24341
Quote:
Originally Posted by burnspbesq View Post
 

....

 

I'm not aware of a single musical instrument that produces fundamentals at 6K.  The highest key on a piano is 4186 at concert pitch.  The highest note on the E string of a violin in seventh position is the third A above middle C, which is 1760 at concert pitch.  A piccolo gets to around 3500.  Maybe you could blow an overtone on a soprano sax, or do some weird overblowing thing on an oboe, that would get you above 3K.  But that's pretty much it.

 

So what's at 6K?  Well, the second harmonic of 1500; but how much of a typical piece of music resides in the third octave above middle C (OK, you've got me on the Barber Adagio for Strings, but other than that ...)? 

 

What you find at 6K is primarily third and higher-order harmonics and some transient information.  That's not nothing, but looking at a random sample of tracks from my collection in Audacity, what's at 6K is typically about 30dB down from what's in the octaves around middle C

 

Is an artificial boost of a few dB in that area really all that critical?  And if so, why?

 

A fair question, but at least one natural instrument does play fundamentals that high: pipe organ.  See chart below.

 

More significant, in my opinion, is the impact on overtones as you mentioned.  Since our perception of accurate timbre (and indeed our ability to differentiate a flute from a trumpet) is simply a function of the magnitude and phase of an instrument's overtones, a 6khz peak is definitely going to impact perceived timbre in a significant way.  As depicted by the yellow lines below, most natural voices and instruments have audible overtones that extend beyond 6khz.

 

  

post #9584 of 24341
As I am sure this is all true. I have played with this
As my office rig is a 4 way crossover
Last cutoff is 4k and up as when I have had it for testing increased to 8 k
The music sound very real but without ambience air and staging
And the energy at that freq and above is small but has
A very large impact
Al
post #9585 of 24341
Quote:
Originally Posted by ALRAINBOW View Post

As some here may know. I use all three kinds of musical reproduction . CIEM, HEADPHONES AND SPEAKERS.

As we approach a ultra hi end form of sound reproduction. The chain becomes much more sensitive to all devices in it.
As such of course music content is at the beginning of the chain. Now with a headphone like hd800 it is very much helping show you the good the bad and the ugly. A headphone like the lcd3 is far better suited for lesser recordings
But if you want to hear it all , thT is what this thread is about. So it's a virtue not a curse.
Al


+1 

For some it seems though, that they are enjoying very much splitting hairs about the "curse aspect" with their specific music preference , LOL.

I am in the virtue camp and enjoy it ;-)).

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: High-end Audio Forum
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Summit-Fi (High-End Audio) › High-end Audio Forum › The (new) HD800 Impressions Thread