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Wow! Sennheiser HD 540 Reference are so good. - Page 4

post #46 of 250
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2leftears View Post


I found that not until Sennheiser released the HD800 did they manage to match the tonal balance of the HD540s. I now have both and listen to both (my pair of 650 sees a lot less use in fact).

 

welcome to the 540 club 2leftears...

those headphones are just unbelievably good.

i LOVE the tonal balance, timbre and realism of my Q701 (modded) for acoustic music, vocals, strings, and mid-centric tracks in general

i may sound like a 540 evangelist, but I just did a direct comparison and... jeeez, i hate to say but i couldn't believe how superior the Senns 540s are (resolution/details level, clarity and separation included!)

the AKG sounded almost congested... crazy.


Edited by Hairspray - 12/5/13 at 2:02pm
post #47 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hairspray View Post

Last week, I ordered remplacement pads (the HD-250 Linear II pads fit perfectly) and original HD-540 Reference foam pads that are available at Thomann

The 540 I bought back in the 80's were an early pair that came with pleather pads with open weave cloth side walls. Quite square in cross-section. Occasionally you see a pair advertised with white pads. This is the pleather having crumbled away exposing the white felt underneath. The later edition ones came with velours pads that had a much rounder cross-section ( and were marginally less deep). The 2 pairs of replacement pads I ordered years ago (just before 540 spares were discontinued) were also the velours ones. Fitting the "new" style pads to an older style 540 does affect the sound, and I resorted to fitting a thick cardboard ring underneath the pads to give the ear cavity an acoustic resistance into the open back as close as I could get to the original pair (by experimentation). That made them pretty similar to the sound using the orignal pads (to my ears anyway).

I imagine the HD-250 Linear II pads will make them sound a little different as well. No need to start experimenting with cardboard though, sounds like you are happy the way they are now cool.gif
post #48 of 250
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2leftears View Post

The 540 I bought back in the 80's were an early pair that came with pleather pads with open weave cloth side walls. Quite square in cross-section. Occasionally you see a pair advertised with white pads).
Same, i still have those hybrid original pads, but they are completely rotten. I will post a pic soon.

I imagine the HD-250 Linear II pads will make them sound a little different as well. No need to start experimenting with cardboard though, sounds like you are happy the way they are now cool.gif
I'm going to do a pad-rolling session (velour, soft skin, thick, shallow, and what else...). The 250 linear II pads could be the worst... One thing is sure: they are thicker and offer more room for air and better seal, which should accentuate the lows and highs and offer a wider soundstage. But the price to pay = recessed mids and a less intimate presentation... But on the other hand, if the velour pads are too shallow, the vocals become shouty, kinda distored and the soundstage smaller (i experienced that with the velour pads on the Beyers DT 150 => horrible.). But this is blablabla... There's no universal rule for pads. It depends on the brand, model, and a lot of others variables. The only thing to do is tests... but it often become quickly stressing and annoying.
post #49 of 250

This thread will take you through some of my thoughts on the HD540.

 

http://audio-forum.gspaudio.co.uk/why-does-the-hd250-design-sound-so-good_topic2005.html

post #50 of 250
Thread Starter 

^^^ very interesting reading ^^^

thanks

seems like you really know what you're talking about.

post #51 of 250

I shall do some more sound comparisons with HD250I, HD250II, HD540I and HD540II before I sell the rest of what I don't need. I have two Graham Slee Bitzie DACs and two Lautus USB cables so I could use two laptops to have all four headphone models playing CD music rips simultaneously. What better way to compare headphones than to have them all playing, side-by-side. I am already confident though that the HD540II is the clear winner. The transparency and spatial image that the HD540II have with their original all-velour earpads is simply incredible. I've never heard a better headphone transducer that just lets the music through and this is surely as good as audio reproduction gets...

 

Still, I'm tempted to perform the suggested comparison setup (and take photos of it) just to show others that I'm not messing around and that I am very serious with my conclusions of these headphones. The HD540 Reference II is my reference headphone that I shall be comparing my speaker's accuracy to, in my untreated listening environment. My LS3/5A monitor loudspeakers have shown enormous potential with the Graham Slee Proprius mono-block amplifiers.

post #52 of 250
Thread Starter 

Sennheiser HD 540 Reference I - Original pads (kinda hybrid)

not so rotten after all... i'll give them a try

(crappy pics, sorry)

 

 

post #53 of 250

I think these HD540I original pads are awful and do not do the headphone any justice at all. If you find yourself throwing them in the bin eventually, be sure to first remove the black plastic ring from the back of each pad. These rings are what hold a particular earpad into the driver capsule of a HD250 or HD540. The HD560 uses a different backing ring so if you wish to use HD560 velour earpads with the 250 or 540 like I have done, you have to transplant the backing ring into the pad first. It's not simple to do but the result is very good, I think.

post #54 of 250
I found the original HD540I pads are also significantly deeper than the later velours ones.

I have rather protruding ears so I really need the depth. So far only the HD540 with original pads or modified velours pads, and the HD800 leave my ears comfortable. The HD650 is reasonable, but the clamping force on my head is a too high.

So far only the HD800 and HD540 are comfortable for really long listening sessions.

I never really got on with the HD560, too shallow for me.

Even the best sound quality becomes a bit meaningless when after 20 minutes your ears start to physically hurt.frown.gif
post #55 of 250

I have a pair of 540 that I have been using since high school. I never know how good they were until I started to look around for replacement pads and cable and found this thread.

 

I called Sennheiser USA yesterday to get some replacement pads and cable and the lady on the phone directed me to ebay. I'm hesitant to buy the ones on eBay. Do you guys know of a better place to buy replacement pads and cables for the 540 in north america?

post #56 of 250
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by smoothisfast View Post
 

I have a pair of 540 that I have been using since high school. I never know how good they were until I started to look around for replacement pads and cable and found this thread.

 

I called Sennheiser USA yesterday to get some replacement pads and cable and the lady on the phone directed me to ebay. I'm hesitant to buy the ones on eBay. Do you guys know of a better place to buy replacement pads and cables for the 540 in north america?

 

Sorry, I don't know about sites in north amercia except ebay and amazon for Sennheiser spare parts.

Thomann.de (Europe) ships worldwide but I don't know their shipping rates.

It's probably the best site if you are looking for quality original Sennheiser replacement products (and not cheap China made stuff from ebay).

foam discs:

http://www.thomann.de/gb/sennheiser_hd_540_gold_schaumnetzscheibe.htm

pads (don't require diy):

http://www.thomann.de/gb/sennheiser_hd250_linear_ii_ohrpolster.htm

or (not sure though...):

http://www.thomann.de/gb/sennheiser_hd430_ersatzohrpolster.htm

or 560 velour pads (you will have the use the inner plastic disc of your 540 pads to adapt them, so don't throw your old pads in the bin!):

http://www.thomann.de/gb/sennheiser_41299_hd_560560_ii_ohrpolster.htm

cable:

http://www.thomann.de/gb/sennheiser_37974_kabel.htm

 

velour vs. pleather pads is a never ending debate, so i won't give any recommendations...

 

Pretty expensive but worth it.

Those heaphones are worth it.

The Sennheiser non-veiled and up-front "original" magical signature and presentation...

:deadhorse: 


Edited by Hairspray - 12/11/13 at 10:57am
post #57 of 250
Thread Starter 

BTW, i've read more than once (from people who own both) that the HD 800's signature is based on the HD 540's original signature,

which Goldenears' charts seem to confirm...

the 540/560 engineers team are also supposed to have designed the HE-90 (baby Orpheus)

i have no clue though, but i like the idea and it seems plausible

who knows... ;) 

post #58 of 250
HD560 Ovation (none II)
HD580 (1993 made in Germany version)
HD540 Reference Gold
are the best,most musical dynamic cans.

Do you want to be deeply impressed by the music,love the transparent,sweet sound, but can't afford a he90??
well... buy these cans! lol

have sold my HD800s for two years,800s are lifeless when compared to these
Edited by pkshan - 12/11/13 at 2:30pm
post #59 of 250

hd540 gold are a little overpriced now.

 

hd560 are the better cans IMHO


Edited by pkshan - 12/11/13 at 2:50pm
post #60 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by pkshan View Post
 

hd540 gold are a little overpriced now.

 

hd560 are the better cans IMHO


Aren't the 540 Gold only some "collectors edition" of the standard 540? I have the 530 II. Some say it's superior to the 540.

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