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[REVIEW] HiFiMAN HE-500 vs Sennheiser HD600 - Page 16

post #226 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post
 

 

What?  The mini X vs. the O2 maybe.  But there are many headphone amps out there that will take the HE-500 to their limit.  The HE-500 is not a difficult headphone to drive.  

You'd be surprised how many popular amps can't handle the HE-500's power demands. I think that the O2's power at 32 Ohms is perhaps marginal or just makes it. Many pure tube amps can't hack it. Many of the little dot's can only squeeze out 100mW at 32 Ohms. The Aune T1 can deliver 1000mW, however, at an output impedance of 30 Ohms the damping factor is not there so you can expect sloppy bass.

I don't think the Bottlehead Crack can cut it alone. I think you might be able to add on the S.E.X. kit. Besides not everyone is able to build this stuff and if you add up both kits and some other upgrades with assembly suddenly the price is not so attractive, you can probably get something else.

If one really wants a proper tube experience, I wouldn't recommend a hybrid amp. So for amps with tubes at the output, one has to choose wisely.


Edited by StanD - 1/8/14 at 11:05am
post #227 of 242

Well maybe for the amps you listed.  However, for every amp you named I can name one that will provide more than enough of what ever it takes to drive the HE-500 and sound better doing it compared to the a-100 mini-X.

 

These are not the HE-6, HE-5, HE-5LE, or the HE-4.  I've owned all of them and even most of them can be driven by the majority of mid to upper level headphone amps out here.  To say you need a speaker amp to get the best out the HE-500 is not a correct statement to make by far.

 

If you think the HE-500s are a high end headphone - then feed it a high end amp and soure to get the best out of it.

post #228 of 242
^ Not arguing with you, but just wondering if you have ever heard the HE-500 from Emotiva?
post #229 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonido View Post

^ Not arguing with you, but just wondering if you have ever heard the HE-500 from Emotiva?

 

Yes - I've owned 2 a-100 mini-Xs.  Go the first one only weeks after the release.  Had a chance to put all the HiFimans on it.  

 

I like the 500s better from the likes of GS-1, GS-X mk2, B22, M^3, CK2III, BHA-1 and others.  The issue with the mini-X is - it has a noise floor where the other amps are black.  The HE-500s will pick this up in a heart beat.  This headphone really does deserve a high end amp. 

post #230 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post

Yes - I've owned 2 a-100 mini-Xs.  Go the first one only weeks after the release.  Had a chance to put all the HiFimans on it.  

I like the 500s better from the likes of GS-1, GS-X mk2, B22, M^3, CK2III, BHA-1 and others.  The issue with the mini-X is - it has a noise floor where the other amps are black.  The HE-500s will pick this up in a heart beat.  This headphone really does deserve a high end amp. 
Yup the noise floor is definitely there, especially when I switched to TRS and bypassed the HE-Adapter which gave some attenuation.
post #231 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonido View Post


Yup the noise floor is definitely there, especially when I switched to TRS and bypassed the HE-Adapter which gave some attenuation.

Yeah - that's another thing.  You don't have much room to play around with.

post #232 of 242

GREAT comparison and write up on the cans, the spa girls had me crying with laughter :-)

post #233 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by preproman View Post
 

Well maybe for the amps you listed.  However, for every amp you named I can name one that will provide more than enough of what ever it takes to drive the HE-500 and sound better doing it compared to the a-100 mini-X.

 

These are not the HE-6, HE-5, HE-5LE, or the HE-4.  I've owned all of them and even most of them can be driven by the majority of mid to upper level headphone amps out here.  To say you need a speaker amp to get the best out the HE-500 is not a correct statement to make by far.

 

If you think the HE-500s are a high end headphone - then feed it a high end amp and soure to get the best out of it.

Mini x-a100 will do the trick


Edited by Poetic - 3/3/14 at 9:09am
post #234 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by StanD View Post
 

You'd be surprised how many popular amps can't handle the HE-500's power demands. I think that the O2's power at 32 Ohms is perhaps marginal or just makes it. Many pure tube amps can't hack it. Many of the little dot's can only squeeze out 100mW at 32 Ohms. The Aune T1 can deliver 1000mW, however, at an output impedance of 30 Ohms the damping factor is not there so you can expect sloppy bass.

I don't think the Bottlehead Crack can cut it alone. I think you might be able to add on the S.E.X. kit. Besides not everyone is able to build this stuff and if you add up both kits and some other upgrades with assembly suddenly the price is not so attractive, you can probably get something else.

If one really wants a proper tube experience, I wouldn't recommend a hybrid amp. So for amps with tubes at the output, one has to choose wisely.

i found the O2 not dynamic enough for the 500's. Althought it does sound very clear and spacious, the mids aren't natural enough for my liking either ;X


Edited by Poetic - 3/3/14 at 9:11am
post #235 of 242

This (post 1 of this thread) is the best and most "honest" review of the HE-500 that I've read, and I've read many. I use the word "honest" loosely. It's not that I think other reviewers were dishonest, but some opinions are biased by emotion or initial impressions, and even a perfectly balanced and experienced listener might not weigh natural acoustic music as heavily important as I do. That's just a matter of personal taste.

 

I just got done auditioning a pair of HE-500 and ended up returning them. They are great headphones in many ways, in some ways they're the best I've ever heard, and I've heard a lot of stuff being a serious audiophile over the past 30 years. But they're just not the headphones for me. My impressions may be useful for others. I'm an amateur musician, dabble in EE, with musical taste spanning rock, jazz, folk and other genres but classical/ancient music is the favorite that I live for.

 

My thoughts on the HE-500 vs. Sennheiser HD-600:

http://mclements.net/Mike/mrc-blog/blog-140320.html


Edited by MRC001 - 3/21/14 at 7:04am
post #236 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by MRC001 View Post
 

This (post 1 of this thread) is the best and most "honest" review of the HE-500 that I've read, and I've read many. I use the word "honest" loosely. It's not that I think other reviewers were dishonest, but some opinions are biased by emotion or initial impressions, and even a perfectly balanced and experienced listener might not weigh natural acoustic music as heavily important as I do. That's just a matter of personal taste.

 

I just got done auditioning a pair of HE-500 and ended up returning them. They are great headphones in many ways, in some ways they're the best I've ever heard, and I've heard a lot of stuff being a serious audiophile over the past 30 years. But they're just not the headphones for me. My impressions may be useful for others. I'm an amateur musician, dabble in EE, with musical taste spanning rock, jazz, folk and other genres but classical/ancient music is the favorite that I live for.

 

My thoughts on the HE-500 vs. Sennheiser HD-600:

http://mclements.net/Mike/mrc-blog/blog-140320.html

Perhaps you got a bad sample. I own both HE-500's and HD600's and did not find any such issues with my HE-500's. The mids are fine with mine and I can't stand scooped mids.

post #237 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by StanD View Post
 

Perhaps you got a bad sample. I own both HE-500's and HD600's and did not find any such issues with my HE-500's. The mids are fine with mine and I can't stand scooped mids.


That's possible, though if true it raises questions about their QA. On second thought, as posted earlier in this thread, the FR curve may have the answer. I've seen specs from at least 2 different sources all showing the HE-500 4-6 dB down in the roughly 1k to 5k range, compared to the HD-600 which track just about perfectly flat in this range, depending on which HRTF one uses. That's a noticeable drop right smack dab in the upper midrange to lower treble where a lot of the harmonics that make the individual timbre of acoustic instruments reside. OTOH, the FR curve is gradual not steep, which would make this attenuation less evident (rapid changes in the curve tend to be more audible). So if that is the cause it's surprising the effect is so noticeable given the smooth gradual slope of the curve.

post #238 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by eke2k6 View Post
 

 

I guess I have more of a focus on the natural timbre of things, which the HD600 portrays much better than the HE-500. Maybe if you listened primarily to electronic music, the HE-500 would be the better bet.


My sentiments EXACTLY, and I didn't read this until after I completed my review. Some folks gave you grief about your headphone amp not being up to snuff, in my case there is no question of that. What I heard in the HE-500 midrange was nothing any reviewer had mentioned, even some professionals whose opinions I have come to trust over the years. For a moment I thought I was the only person in the world who heard this. If you're crazy then we both are in exactly the same way.

 

I can see how people might prefer the HE-500. It is better than the HD-600 in some ways, especially in the extreme low bass and high treble. It's a matter of preference how important is the midrange accuracy of voicing or timbre of acoustic instruments. They're both great headphones and neither does it it all, so choose your poison.

post #239 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by disastermouse View Post


My FiiO E9 got quite a bit of volume to the HE-500 but doesn't drive them well compared to the Magni. The Magni puts out more power and it really brings out HE-500 aspects that the E9 doesn't - more glorious female vocals, better snares and rimshots, and a totally distinct mid/bass-bass that adds a three dimensional quality.

The HD650 doesn't provide this with or without the Magni. I'm not willing to dismiss the idea that there's an HD650 amp pairing that WOULD best the HE-500/Magni combo though.

I have read and heard that HD650 really sound good with the Vali for instance, maybe this is a pairing that could match the Magni for you with the HE-500

post #240 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by WhiskeyJacks View Post
 

I have read and heard that HD650 really sound good with the Vali for instance, maybe this is a pairing that could match the Magni for you with the HE-500

The HD650 probably sounds real good with a Magni as well.

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