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Ready to buy Hifi Headphones but which? HD650, HE500, RS1i or LCD2?

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

Hi guys, I would like some recommendations on some new headphones. I currently own my first and only headphones the Grado SR80i's that i run straight out of my macbook pro. i like them and think they sound pretty good but know there are alot better headphones out there and would really like to buy a pair of really nice high end headphones. I have read a bunch of reviews about different headphones and have narrowed down headphone choices to 4 which are the Sennheiser HD650's, Grado RS1i's, Hifiman HE 500's or possibly the Audeze LCD 2's but they are a little more than i want to spend also not sure if i would like their dark sound that i have been reading about. I think i want to go with the Hifiman HE 500's and a Schiit Lyr amp, but now i am actually ready to buy right now online and am having trouble pulling the trigger because its alot of money and don't want to choose one that i'm going to end up not really liking or will any of these be a big enough improvement over the SR 80i's that it wont really matter which one i choose. 

 

So which one do you guys prefer? Which one would be the best upgrade from my current headphones (SR 80i's).

 

Also will I need an amp for all of these or could i possible use them without an amp just straight out of my MBP?


Edited by johnp9723 - 8/30/13 at 6:32pm
post #2 of 28
Thread Starter 

Well I just bought the Hifiman HE-500's. I'm sure i will like them. Now i just have to wait for them to arrive.

post #3 of 28

youre def going to need an amp to power the HiFiMan 500s if you want them to sound good.
Ive demo'd them on several portable amp/DACS and have yet to hear them sound good,but im sure with the proper amp they will suit your needs.There are plaaenty of threads here on various amps users like for the 500s

post #4 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by monsterzero View Post

youre def going to need an amp to power the HiFiMan 500s if you want them to sound good.
Ive demo'd them on several portable amp/DACS and have yet to hear them sound good,but im sure with the proper amp they will suit your needs.There are plaaenty of threads here on various amps users like for the 500s

Yeah i have read that they need some good power to sound good. I'm ordering a Schiit Lyr to drive them.

post #5 of 28

Schiit Lyr with HE500 would be a great combo. HE500, unlike his big brother HE6 which is a power-hungry monster, doesn't need something powerful like speaker amp. But still, HE500 definitely need a powerful amp. I am sure Lyr will do the job.

post #6 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raatikainen View Post

Schiit Lyr with HE500 would be a great combo. HE500, unlike his big brother HE6 which is a power-hungry monster, doesn't need something powerful like speaker amp. But still, HE500 definitely need a powerful amp. I am sure Lyr will do the job.

I think so too, from what I have read. 

post #7 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnp9723 View Post

I think so too, from what I have read. 

I've owned HE500 for quite a long while the only thing that really bothers me is the weight.

Other than that, I would say it is bang for the buck. beerchug.gif

post #8 of 28

I've had the HE 500s for a couple of weeks now and am very happy. I'm using a MacBook Air as a source with FLACs and some Hi-Res files in Itunes. I'm demoing Audirvana which integrates nicely with itunes which I think makes a noticeable difference, so will buy the full version of that.

 

I'm using a pretty low-end AMP / DAC combo from taiwan that no-one's ever heard of (DA&T U2) which, despite it being pretty cheap, seems to drive the HE's well. It does feel like they have more to give though, so will upgrade it as some stage.

 

All in all, the HE500s are really good value for money and are very versatile too, and can sound pretty great with all sorts of different types of music. I have found that by swapping the pads from the pleather ones to the (included) velour ones, that classical sounds better 9more airy, better soundstage) but that rock suffers a bit due to a slight loss of bass,but I'm quibbling. I also found that after a ton of burn-in, the initially harsh treble has smoothed out and now sounds great, to my ears anyway. 

 

So take that for what it's worth, but the HEs have been a really good buy for me - although, as an earlier poster said, they are heavy and not particularly comfortable...

post #9 of 28
Thread Starter 

I have been looking at different apps like Audirvana for my mac but not sure exactly what they do that itunes doesn't? I cant wait to get mine to hear them and get them burned in so they sound like they are supposed to.

post #10 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by warth0g View Post

I've had the HE 500s for a couple of weeks now and am very happy. I'm using a MacBook Air as a source with FLACs and some Hi-Res files in Itunes. I'm demoing Audirvana which integrates nicely with itunes which I think makes a noticeable difference, so will buy the full version of that.

 

I'm using a pretty low-end AMP / DAC combo from taiwan that no-one's ever heard of (DA&T U2) which, despite it being pretty cheap, seems to drive the HE's well. It does feel like they have more to give though, so will upgrade it as some stage.

 

All in all, the HE500s are really good value for money and are very versatile too, and can sound pretty great with all sorts of different types of music. I have found that by swapping the pads from the pleather ones to the (included) velour ones, that classical sounds better 9more airy, better soundstage) but that rock suffers a bit due to a slight loss of bass,but I'm quibbling. I also found that after a ton of burn-in, the initially harsh treble has smoothed out and now sounds great, to my ears anyway. 

 

So take that for what it's worth, but the HEs have been a really good buy for me - although, as an earlier poster said, they are heavy and not particularly comfortable...

as far as the bass is concerned i'm sure that even with the velour pads on the bass will be a lot better than my sr 80i's which i think are a little bass shy but still sound good.

post #11 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnp9723 View Post

as far as the bass is concerned i'm sure that even with the velour pads on the bass will be a lot better than my sr 80i's which i think are a little bass shy but still sound good.


I have SR80i and HE-400 (very similar to HE-500). When i listen to my SR80i's now its like they have no bass at all in comparison, the HE-400 is miles ahead in impact, extension and sub bass presence.

post #12 of 28
I have owned and loved the HD650, Audeze LCD2 and HE500.

The HE500 offers best value. It has arguably a more balanced sound than the other two, very good clarity and pairs extremely well with the Lyr. In fact, this is the amp I used to run my HE500s. Of the options you listed, this would be my pick.

Cheers
post #13 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh05 View Post


I have SR80i and HE-400 (very similar to HE-500). When i listen to my SR80i's now its like they have no bass at all in comparison, the HE-400 is miles ahead in impact, extension and sub bass presence.

Awesome! Thats good to hear. I cant wait for mine to get here.

post #14 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by W0lfd0g View Post

I have owned and loved the HD650, Audeze LCD2 and HE500.

The HE500 offers best value. It has arguably a more balanced sound than the other two, very good clarity and pairs extremely well with the Lyr. In fact, this is the amp I used to run my HE500s. Of the options you listed, this would be my pick.

Cheers

Good to hear. Thank you

post #15 of 28

I use the HE-500 with the Asgard II and it sounds great. I didn't want to spend Lyr money since I was new to the whole thing. But the Asgaard is defiantly loud enough and has great range on high's mid's and low. So far I love the combo.

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