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Need help with HD800 and Digital EQ for bass / TH900 / DX2000

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

Not sure if this belongs in this section; I posted it in full size cans and got one response in over a week! Didn't seem right so.......

 

So I've convinced myself that I need new cans. I have D7000's and love them, but as usual with this hobby, the question is: "but what would it sound like if I got _____?" SO, based on what I heard at a meet a couple of years back, I've narrowed it down to the Fostex TH900 (which I feel I'm guaranteed to like if not love), the HD800, or JVC's elusive DX2000 (but I'm not holding my breath).
 
Here's the thing: I loved the sound of the HD800's. The mids were SO neutral, the soundstage was awesome, and I don't remember the treble, but I DO remember I didn't find it fatigueing like some people do. I listened to them on a Gilmore Lite amp and DACmagic and thought it was great, but just not enough bass for what I listen to: rock. I've seen the Anaxilus mod, and while I have no problem trying it, I really doubt it will give me what I want, which is: D7000 level of bass quantity. Or more. I just can't live without plenty of bass, so I'm thinking, maybe I do an HD800 with a Behringer DEQ2496, and just EQ in extra bass DIGITALLY (before the DAC)?? I have ZERO interest in playing around with trying a hundred different amps, tube rolling, or playing with different cables. If I go HD800, it's strictly the stock cable, I'll try the Anaxilus mod, and I'm only going to use my Audio GD amp/DAC. No tubes or cables for me. Sorry. Not being difficult or ignorant, just my preference. 
 
If I go Fostex TH900, I have no doubt they're wonderful, but can I get that sweet HD800 midrange from them? I don't know, and I really can't afford to buy both and see. However, TH900 costs about the same as HD800 + EQ, so cost isn't the issue if I'm buying just one. And I don't care about open vs. closed and disturbing others. Comfort isn't an issue either, as both are supremely comfortable. This is strictly about sound, and the real concern is bass from the HD800.
 
Any opinions either way (from people that really KNOW)? Again, NO interest in trying different cables or tubes (sorry), and no interest in any other cans. I've owned or listened to and disliked basically everything else possible except for Audeze which I have no interest in for a number of reasons.
 
 
 
Discuss......   =D
 
 
 
PS: my D7000's will be for sale soon, solely because of the OCD that is this hobby.

post #2 of 13
Thread Starter 

Wow, what an overwhelming response!

 

I don't get it; there are threads here that go on for dozens, sometimes hundreds of pages, yet EVERY single time I've posted something on head fi, getting more than 3 responses is harder than pulling teeth! Am I just that boring to the regulars here?? I don't get it. Maybe it's not fashionable to respond to people who don't have enough posts??

 

Anybody?? Hello hello hello (echo)

post #3 of 13

EQ is generally treated as a dirty word on high end forums. In my opinion this is not only unfair it is self defeating. You can change equipment all day long at great expense, tweek cables, a/c cords, change tubes and the like, or use digital eq and end this mess.  Anyone who invests in all that tweeking and changing equipment is either just enjoying the hobby for what it is (I do) or submitting to audio maddness which can become a compulsive addiction. It's a fine line between the two. Many of the subtle differences between equipment can easily be obtained and compensated though the use of digital eq without suffering any signal loss. Modern pc's are very capable devices to accomplish this sort of digital processing.

 

The simplest approach is to follow this link and http://www.aixcoustic.com/index.php/Electri-Q-posihfopit/30/0/ install Electi-Q. There are threads on this forum about this free eq. There are also more elaborate paid digital eq's, but the one in that link should be enough for most people.  The problem is that the elitist high end audio crowd will always rail against any simple solution to this problem because it is counter to their pursuits of this hobby. Just walk into a recording studio some time and talk to them about eq. They all use it. 


Edited by Chodi - 3/9/13 at 1:29pm
post #4 of 13

As I read in the german hifi-forum the Behringer DEQ2496

is a great bargain and will make it easy to EQ more bass in.

In contrast to this forum a lot of people are using EQ there.

In my opinion it's a superior way to alter the sound with an EQ

instead of buying colored amps and dacs.

If done properly EQ won't reduce SQ.

 

Actually I also have the HD800 and I'm thinking about purchasing the DEQ2496.

Currently i'm using a software EQ.

post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 

Wow!! I got replies!! =)

 

Sent a PM to frix on the subject, but I think I'm gonna do this the hard but accurate way: buy TH900, buy HD800 and the digital EQ. Break everything in, and waste a lot of time testing back and forth for days on end, then sell what I don't want. No, I can't afford to keep it all ;)

post #6 of 13

I'm also debating between the TH900 and HD800. However, I did not get a chance to listen to both of them, so I've only been reading reviews and impressions here. If you had the luxury of hearing them, what else would it take for you to make up your mind? Some of the things I've debated on:

 

1. I have DT1350, which are closed. I recently bought the HD650 but haven't received it yet. Wanted to try open headphones. Currently I prefer closed as I like to enjoy music without bothering others. The bass, I've read, seems to be better with closed and I do prefer a more impactful bass. 

 

2. I prefer a portable setup. I take my current portable rig to work and bring them back home everyday. While I home, I also prefer portability, and want to listen to music whether I'm in the living room, bedroom, or lying down. So that rules out a complete home setup. Based on this, I think the TH900 is easier to drive, although I understand that I will not get the best out of either headphones with a portable amp. 

 

3. Price. I do not want to spend a few grand on a home setup. So again, I'm looking for a top tier headphone that's easier to drive. I've read the HD800 is very picky with amps, so again I may go for the TH900 (or may just keep my DT1350 or HD650 and be the end of it).

 

If you still can't decide, then perhaps you could go to another meet. In the end, trust your ears (and your wallet). 

post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 

Well, I own the D7000, which is kinda sorta close-ish to the TH900, and I've heard and really enjoyed the HD800, but I'm not sure I can live without the bass. Decisions decisions. I don't really have a preference for open vs closed, it's really more about what I like best at this point, being that this is strictly a home setup. I'm actually thinking of trying a different approach this time, one that I've NEVER tried before, and that is simply buying and owning what I ENJOYmost, rather than what's the most accurate or neutral or whatever. (YES, I realize D7000's are not considered neutral). This thought is more about approaching a new setup with a different perspective than I have in the past, even if it does lead me to the same place. Why not? After all, this IS just a hobby! Really, there's nothing wrong with my current setup, it's just I think my taste is changing, or maybe I'm bored, and I think I want to change everything, and get a different sounding setup. I'm not even really sure what I want at this point!

 

I'm thinking of going to the Long Island meet on the 20th. It's a PITA, but you can accomplish quite a bit in a short time, so I will likely go if my son doesn't have soccer that morning. As for your HD650's, I just don't like them. I'm in the minority though; people go crazy for them. The ONLY Sennheisers I've ever heard that I liked were the HD800. Haven't heard Orpheus or baby Orpheus, and given the prices, I don't want to!

 

I'm likely going to get a new DAC/amp too, just because. I really wish somebody made something I could get for like $1000 that was good and had the Sabre chip in it and had A REMOTE!! I know I know, the chip doesn't really matter. And yet, it's stuck in my head that it does!

post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by mk351e View Post

Well, I own the D7000, which is kinda sorta close-ish to the TH900, and I've heard and really enjoyed the HD800, but I'm not sure I can live without the bass. Decisions decisions. I don't really have a preference for open vs closed, it's really more about what I like best at this point, being that this is strictly a home setup. I'm actually thinking of trying a different approach this time, one that I've NEVER tried before, and that is simply buying and owning what I ENJOYmost, rather than what's the most accurate or neutral or whatever. (YES, I realize D7000's are not considered neutral). This thought is more about approaching a new setup with a different perspective than I have in the past, even if it does lead me to the same place. Why not? After all, this IS just a hobby! Really, there's nothing wrong with my current setup, it's just I think my taste is changing, or maybe I'm bored, and I think I want to change everything, and get a different sounding setup. I'm not even really sure what I want at this point!

 

I'm thinking of going to the Long Island meet on the 20th. It's a PITA, but you can accomplish quite a bit in a short time, so I will likely go if my son doesn't have soccer that morning. As for your HD650's, I just don't like them. I'm in the minority though; people go crazy for them. The ONLY Sennheisers I've ever heard that I liked were the HD800. Haven't heard Orpheus or baby Orpheus, and given the prices, I don't want to!

 

I'm likely going to get a new DAC/amp too, just because. I really wish somebody made something I could get for like $1000 that was good and had the Sabre chip in it and had A REMOTE!! I know I know, the chip doesn't really matter. And yet, it's stuck in my head that it does!

You won't find any integrated units with a remote for under $1500.00 and that would be the Benchmark DAC1 which is last years model. The new model DAC2 is about the same price as the Grace Designs m903, which has double the power of the DAC2, better sound (IMO), and a lot more features. Those are both in the $2k range though... You pay a hefty price tag for convenience it seems (but I do love having a remote!). 


Edited by bareyb - 3/26/13 at 5:17pm
post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 

Yeah I don't know. I'm gonna post a different question in a different forum, but it seems like with a lot of these things you pay a ton of cash and go home with what appears to be a product that uses a bunch of cheap parts. I really don't understand circuit design (and I don't want to), but if you LOOK at an Audio GD product, or at least the internals, it looks pretty serious. Look inside say, the benchmark, and it looks like a $300 Matrix Mini i.

 

Surely this is just an oversimplification?? I don't know. It seems with headphones, unlike the world of speaker design that I come from, the more I know, the less I understand!

post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by mk351e View Post

Yeah I don't know. I'm gonna post a different question in a different forum, but it seems like with a lot of these things you pay a ton of cash and go home with what appears to be a product that uses a bunch of cheap parts. I really don't understand circuit design (and I don't want to), but if you LOOK at an Audio GD product, or at least the internals, it looks pretty serious. Look inside say, the benchmark, and it looks like a $300 Matrix Mini i.

 

Surely this is just an oversimplification?? I don't know. It seems with headphones, unlike the world of speaker design that I come from, the more I know, the less I understand!

High End Amp designers often will try to limit the number of components in the signal path. If you look inside a Burson Conductor, they don't have a bunch of parts inside either. Of course you can't go just by that, but just wanted to point out that more stuff inside doesn't always equate to better sound (although the Audio-GD products you referenced have a stellar reputation around here). 

post #11 of 13

Theres nothing wrong with equalizing if the need be. At the end of the day its all personal preference. The HD800's imo don't need any adjustments but because they are so neutral a little tweek on a digital equalizer isn't gonna cause too much damage. Try it. Wack the lower end up!  Then slowly wean yourself off it like a bass-oholic :) One notch at a time over a matter of weeks. 

post #12 of 13

Even though some of the newer music has the overall gain maxed out to "0" dB, there are still some dips and valleys that allow for some reasonable EQ without going into the "clip zone". I can usually mess around with up to about 4 dB boost without any problems. One trick people use, is to decrease the overall output from the EQ (in the preamp area) by the same amount that you boosted. In this scenario, if you boosted the lower frequencies by 4 dB then you'd cut the gain by 4 dB. 

post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thanks guys, I may just try it. I think what I'm gonna do is attend the NY meet, strap on a pair of HD800's, and play some LF test tones, and see what they're capable of. This way, I'll at least know if they have the ability to do what I want with some EQ. Hopefully, I'll be able to hear some TH900's as well, as these likely are what I'm looking for in the first place! The answer in just 3 weeks from today.........

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