What did you pair those headphones with when you compared them?
Your preference seem to lean towards dark headphones. You might either like that dark tonality as it is, or have bright source/amp to match your preference. Either way, it does not play in the HE-500's favour...
My source app was Foobar2k with Wasapi Output, comboed with the Burson HA160 and Bel Canto Combo Dac/Amp for home use. For portable usage, the Alo International is my primary amplifier of choice combed with the HM801 with the upgrade amp, Cowon J3, Fiio X3, Hisound Studio V and most recently the DX50. Interconnects by Moon Audio in the form of Black Dragons. I prefer a neutral midrange with sparkled highs and a slightly warm tilt on the low end. I dislike clinical sound but do not use this as any justification in considering the HE500 inferior in most but not all ways vs the MDs.
Rock on. I think the upper region is much more clear and smooth on the HE-500 though.
Edited by 24Bit - 9/11/13 at 3:19pm