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Hifiman HE-400i and HE-560: From CES to Pre-Launch - Page 82

post #1216 of 3090

Hi, HifiMAN in China will be back on Monday Feb 10. In the meantime. we are open for biz here in the U.S. Send the request to Summer at summeryin@hifiman.com

 

Peter

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post #1217 of 3090
Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyman392 View Post
 

 

My best guess would be Monday...  New Years is Thursday-Friday this year... 

Lol no, CNY is a week-long holiday in China I think.

post #1218 of 3090
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post
 

Lol no, CNY is a week-long holiday in China I think.

 

The actual New Year's day is on Friday (Thursday would be NYE). That's all I was saying (my mom actually only takes those two days off in celebration). It looks like they're off for two weeks if they are returning the 10th... 


Edited by tinyman392 - 1/28/14 at 3:18pm
post #1219 of 3090
Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyman392 View Post
 

 

The actual New Year's day is on Friday (Thursday would be NYE). That's all I was saying (my mom actually only takes those two days off in celebration). It looks like they're off for two weeks if they are returning the 10th... 

Yeah, I guess Hifiman's corporate CNY holidays is 2 weeks, gotta keep the workforce happy.

post #1220 of 3090
Quote:
Originally Posted by revolte View Post
 

I was thinking of picking up the  HE-400 this week since its down at $300, but since the 400i is coming out so soon im not sure.  Do you guys think it will be worth the $200 more?

Depends on your needs/preferences, gear, and background experience in headphones. I personally think that the HE-400 easily beats all the headphones I've tried in the up-to-$400 price bracket. At $300, I think it is an amazing steal.

 

No one knows really knows how the 400i will sound like in its final release version, so there is no harm in waiting two months to see some real reviews come in. In headphones, there is extreme diminishing returns as the price goes up, so how much sound quality improvement is worth $200 more is highly subjective. Luckily, there is positive design/comfort improvements to the HE-400i that will make the higher price tag more justifiable to consumers.

 

Honestly, I find the HE-400 to be very close to the perfect pair of headphones for my listening habits. I think the only improvement I would like to see in its SQ would be some frequency response tuning of the high mids/trebles (which I have already adjusted easily via EQ).

post #1221 of 3090
Quote:
Originally Posted by money4me247 View Post
 

Depends on your needs/preferences, gear, and background experience in headphones. I personally think that the HE-400 easily beats all the headphones I've tried in the up-to-$400 price bracket. At $300, I think it is an amazing steal.

 

No one knows really knows how the 400i will sound like in its final release version, so there is no harm in waiting two months to see some real reviews come in. In headphones, there is extreme diminishing returns as the price goes up, so how much sound quality improvement is worth $200 more is highly subjective. Luckily, there is positive design/comfort improvements to the HE-400i that will make the higher price tag more justifiable to consumers.

 

Honestly, I find the HE-400 to be very close to the perfect pair of headphones for my listening habits. I think the only improvement I would like to see in its SQ would be some frequency response tuning of the high mids/trebles (which I have already adjusted easily via EQ).


Thanks for the response.  I am probably just going to get the 400 and a schiit stack or the aune t1.  May as I ask what kind of music you listen to?  I'll be listening to everything on these but mainly a lot of electronic music, stuff like Tim Hecker, Burial, OPN, Andy Stott.  All of electronic and its subgenres.

post #1222 of 3090
Quote:
Originally Posted by revolte View Post
 


Thanks for the response.  I am probably just going to get the 400 and a schiit stack or the aune t1.  May as I ask what kind of music you listen to?  I'll be listening to everything on these but mainly a lot of electronic music, stuff like Tim Hecker, Burial, OPN, Andy Stott.  All of electronic and its subgenres.

 

Would not suggest the 400 for music like tim hecker due to its U/V shaped sig, just cause of the way hecker uses the full spectrum in many of his tracks it would probably not sound as natural, plus a lot of his work is based around the piano on which he plays mostly the middle parts. The 500 would probably work qutie a bit better there, but burial or anything similar, or for genres like glitchy kind of stuff probably works quite well on the 400. In general though I am not a fan of U signatures.

 

If the 400i is as they say (more like the 500), it might be exactly what you want for those musical tastes. The 500 is good but judging by the gear you say you'll be using, the 400 or 400i is probably right in your wheelhouse and if the 400i is somewhere in between the 400 and 500 in terms of SQ and signature, then it would hypothetically be an excellent go-to for electronic music that you've specified.


Edited by Llloyd - 1/28/14 at 4:37pm
post #1223 of 3090
Quote:

Originally Posted by Llloyd View Post
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by revolte View Post
 

Thanks for the response.  I am probably just going to get the 400 and a schiit stack or the aune t1.  May as I ask what kind of music you listen to?  I'll be listening to everything on these but mainly a lot of electronic music, stuff like Tim Hecker, Burial, OPN, Andy Stott.  All of electronic and its subgenres.

 

Would not suggest the 400 for music like tim hecker due to its U/V shaped sig, just cause of the way hecker uses the full spectrum in many of his tracks it would probably not sound as natural, plus a lot of his work is based around the piano on which he plays mostly the middle parts. The 500 would probably work qutie a bit better there, but burial or anything similar, or for genres like glitchy kind of stuff probably works quite well on the 400. In general though I am not a fan of U signatures.

 

If the 400i is as they say (more like the 500), it might be exactly what you want for those musical tastes. The 500 is good but judging by the gear you say you'll be using, the 400 or 400i is probably right in your wheelhouse and if the 400i is somewhere in between the 400 and 500 in terms of SQ and signature, then it would hypothetically be an excellent go-to for electronic music that you've specified.

I strongly disagree with Llloyd's opinion. The HE-400 is not anywhere close to U/V-shaped sound signature. Headphones like the V-Moda M100/LP/LP2, Ultrasone Pro 900, Yamaha Pro 500, ATH M100, or the Ultrasone Sig DJ have a U shaped sound signature with boosted bass response, recessed mids, and elevated treble.

 

The HE-400 has amazing bass (tight, responsive, very textured & detailed with great deep extension) that easily beats other dynamic headphones at this price range. However, the bass is very natural and does not seem boosted or bloated at all. While the HE-400 is not technically completely neutral/flat, they definitely don't have a U-shaped frequency response from the way they sound. I think they do have a slight dip in the upper mids and a small spike in one part of the treble on their FR graph, so not flat-line neutral FR, but their curve is not anything like a U-shaped FR & I've never heard them characterized that way before. Nothing on the HE-400 really sounds blatantly recessed or boosted when you listen to them, and they sound more neutral than most of the portable lifestyle headphones out there. I would say the only headphones that sound more technically neutral that I've tried would be the AKG Q701 and the Sennheiser HD600, but neither of those can compete with the HE-400's bass quality. You aren't really looking for 100% flat frequency response for electronic music anyways. Most people prefer the colored Fostex TH900 over the Sennheiser HD800 for electronic music.

 

Yes, the HE-500 probably technically outperforms the HE-400 and has a more neutral FR, but I've heard a lot of people preferring the HE-400's sound signature for electronic music due to its deep visceral bass. Note the HE-500 is 150% of the price of the HE-400. Depending on how the HE400i turns out, they may be a better pair of headphones for your genre preferences, but that's hard to say before its sound has been finalized.

 

For primarily electronic music in this price range, I would imagine that the HE-400 or HD650 would be the top two contenders in this price range. Perhaps the discontinued ddenon d7000 or something from Beyerdynamic would also be nice, but I've never heard those products. If you want the best that money can buy for electronic, I would think Fostex TH900 or maybe an Audeze.

post #1224 of 3090

I think David Mahler's description is pretty close to accurate:

 

The HE-400's tonality is not "fun" in the sense that it is totally un-neutral - It is fun because it has a very specific upper-mid dip that allows the listener to home-in on specific instruments. The HE-400's tonal balance is not the definition of neutral, but it is also not the complete antithesis either. It manages to find a unique equilibrium between "colored" and "neutral."

post #1225 of 3090
The 400's are only as great as the recording- if a recording is less than perfect, these headphones let me know it. They are very unforgiving. The treble issues I repeatedly had with the 400's are nonexistent on the 500's. It seems quite possible the 400i could inch much closer to the performance level of the 500's, and eliminate my perceived flaws of the 400. Also possible the 400's will still be the preferred headphone by many for Electronic music. Of course, these are all just my opinions, and YMMV.
Edited by Zuckfun - 1/28/14 at 5:56pm
post #1226 of 3090

Sounds like I am better off waiting for reviews on the HE-400i and seeing how they compare to the HE-400/HE-500, and if the $500 pricetag is justified.  Thanks for all the input guys!  Also, will the HE-400's drop down to around $300 permanently once the 400i is released?

post #1227 of 3090

Echoing what a lot of people have said about the 400 on here, If you primarily listen to electronic music, or if you listen to a lot of newer, well-mastered recordings then the 400 is great. I personally think Tim Hecker's Ravedeath,1972 album sounds fantastic through the 400. It's only when you get to hard rock/heavy metal and otherwise poorly mastered recordings that I start to dislike its sound signature. Still, I think if you're considering the 400 now, It's worth waiting to see what the 400i is all about. I'd gladly pay $500 for a 400 with a more evened out mid-high frequency response, but the 560 is what's really capturing my interest.


Edited by Mandala - 1/28/14 at 7:24pm
post #1228 of 3090
Quote:
  It manages to find a unique equilibrium between "colored" and "neutral."

 

Would you like to clarify? I have no idea what this means.

post #1229 of 3090
Quote:
Originally Posted by Llloyd View Post

 

Would you like to clarify? I have no idea what this means.

lol it is a quote from this popular comparison guide: http://www.head-fi.org/t/634201/battle-of-the-flagships-58-headphones-compared-update-audeze-lcd-2-revision-2-6-4-13#user_HE400

 

I imagine he means exactly what he says in this quote, but you can PM him if you want more clarification.

 

The HE-400's tonality is not "fun" in the sense that it is totally un-neutral - It is fun because it has a very specific upper-mid dip that allows the listener to home-in on specific instruments. The HE-400's tonal balance is not the definition of neutral, but it is also not the complete antithesis either. It manages to find a unique equilibrium between "colored" and "neutral."

 

Further on, he says this... which implies that the FR tuning improves how they sound but prevent them from having a true flat neutral FR curve. It sounds similar how I've heard that Sennheiser tuned the HD650 with a colored sound in order to sound more natural vs the HD600 which was tuned according to the FR curve.

 

MIDS: The mids here are interesting. The lower-mids are significantly forward while the upper-mids are significantly recessed. However, this is not as problematic as it sounds. The mids are recessed in the region where many odd nasal characteristics typically emanate. Here there is none of that. Of course, the recessed upper midrange will find detractors. It prevents this headphone from being "neutral." But I must counter this by suggesting that this coloration is not offensive to my ears, and I think many people may ultimately be won over by the headphone's ability to render detail without sounding shouty or nasal.

 
Edit: Basically, I don't think that a U-shaped sound signature is an accurate description of the HE-400 as that implies a boosted bass (false; bass sounds great, but not overly-emphasized), recessed midrange (slightly true - upper mid dip, but I agree with the review. the coloration does not negatively impact the sound signature as the guitars, pianos, and other mid-instruments sound very clear and natural - it does not sound like the mid-instruments are hidden by the rest of the frequency range), and elevated treble (slightly true; there is one treble spike that sometimes cause too much brightness for my tastes on poor recordings). From my listening experience, the mids sound great & the bass is simply amazing. My only suggestion for SQ improvement would further tuning of the treble region. Overall, from my personal experience, the sound quality is excellent and the headphones sound very natural.

Edited by money4me247 - 1/28/14 at 11:24pm
post #1230 of 3090
For $300 paired with a tower of Schiit at $220-230, it's quite a system. If you diy jergpads, you're looking at a $550 right with a not so apparent nasal dip. Impressive performance to cost ratio to say the least.



Quote:
Originally Posted by money4me247 View Post

lol it is a quote from this popular comparison guide: http://www.head-fi.org/t/634201/battle-of-the-flagships-58-headphones-compared-update-audeze-lcd-2-revision-2-6-4-13#user_HE400

I imagine he means exactly what he says in this quote, but you can PM him if you want more clarification.


The HE-400's tonality is not "fun" in the sense that it is totally un-neutral - It is fun because it has a very specific upper-mid dip that allows the listener to home-in on specific instruments. The HE-400's tonal balance is not the definition of neutral, but it is also not the complete antithesis either. It manages to find a unique equilibrium between "colored" and "neutral."

Further on, he says this... which implies that the FR tuning improves how they sound but prevent them from having a true flat neutral FR curve. It sounds similar how I've heard that Sennheiser tuned the HD650 with a colored sound in order to sound more natural vs the HD600 which was tuned according to the FR curve.

MIDS: The mids here are interesting. The lower-mids are significantly forward while the upper-mids are significantly recessed. However, this is not as problematic as it sounds. The mids are recessed in the region where many odd nasal characteristics typically emanate. Here there is none of that. Of course, the recessed upper midrange will find detractors. It prevents this headphone from being "neutral." But I must counter this by suggesting that this coloration is not offensive to my ears, and I think many people may ultimately be won over by the headphone's ability to render detail without sounding shouty or nasal.
 
Basically, I don't think that a U-shaped sound signature is an accurate description of the HE-400 as that implies a boosted bass (false; bass sounds great, but not overly-emphasized), recessed midrange (slightly true - upper mid dip, but I agree with the review. the coloration does not negatively impact the sound signature as the guitars, pianos, and other mid-instruments sound very clear and natural), and elevated treble (slightly true; there is one treble spike that sometimes cause too much brightness for my tastes on poor recordings). From my listening experience, the mids sound great & the bass is simply amazing. My only suggestion for SQ improvement would further tuning of the treble region. Overall, from my personal experience, the sound quality is excellent and the headphones sound very natural.

Edited by Soundsgoodtome - 1/28/14 at 11:18pm
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