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= HiFiMAN HE-560 Impressions & Discussion Thread = - Page 122

post #1816 of 6007
Nah modified Hifiman he-5 headphone not selectable from his website. That's weird because they are rare as it is.
post #1817 of 6007
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattTCG View Post
 

 

Just messin' with you. ;)


ahhhhhhhh, i'm missing some brain cells

post #1818 of 6007
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post
 

I'll write a fairly in-depth piece on my impressions of primarily HE560 vs HD800, but also touch upon LCD3 and Code-X. It will be all my opinion and preference, keep that in mind when you guys read it.

 

Would love to read this...

 

:popcorn:

post #1819 of 6007
Thread Starter 

Here it is, un-editorialized off-my-head thoughts from the private meet today. I'll also quote it in first post because it's probably gonna be helpful info in the long run.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We had both a ss (PWDmk2 -> Burson conductor) and a tube (PWDmk2 -> Eddie Current 2A3mk4) setup going.

 

The bulk of my comparisons were with HE560 vs HD800; so I’ll briefly go over how the other two (LCD3 and Code-X) felt in comparison first.

 

 

LCD3

 

LCD3 is extremely detailed and smooth (as much overall detail as HD800 despite a 10 dB difference in upper mids ~ all of treble), but the bass is slow and lacks impact (instead, it is enveloping), the tonal balance also bothers me a bit, the upper end is de-emphasized enough to for everything to feel distant and faded-off.

 

I felt HE560 was as detailed though a tad more raw in the treble, with a significantly more engaging balance, and IMO superior bass (the impact is substantially more solid, and everything is faster/tighter with the bass, texture/articulation are on par).

 

There was also a weird soundstage phenomenon with LCD3, where the suction of the earpads create a sort of bubbled-in effect, which is not with HE560 (soundstage is utterly open and projective outward without boundaries).

 

 

Code-X

 

I didn’t listen to Code-X as much, because I couldn’t get a comfortable fit with the earpads, it still sealed well though so the sonic impressions should be accurate. These stood out to me as having incredibly black background and very fast transients (as fast if not faster than HE560!), and the tonal balance is really neutral, so much so that I couldn’t even detect a describable sound signature.

 

I found HE560 to be more immediate and engaging to listen to though, some musical cues felt a bit distanced with Code-X (which may or may not be what one prefers, just I value musical engagement a lot). I need more time to listen to Code-X next time as this may only be a case of not becoming accustomed to a foreign sound signature. These Code-X's are by far the most speaker-like sounding thing of the bunch though.

 

 

HD800

 

HD800 vs HE560 was a highly interesting comparison, and we had some fun arguments regarding it when we compared the two. Upon critical listening, I found HD800 to still have the greatest amount of treble microdetail extraction (better than anything else), meaning things like the texture of the strings in a violin piece, or rasp of a voice in a vocal piece, but HE560s are surprisingly close in this regard.

 

Midrange-wise I actually prefer the HE560 to the HD800, as the latter felt comparatively a bit too diffused and lacking in cohesiveness/solidarity, which is again very apparent with good violin/vocal tracks I tested with; both had excellent midrange transparency and were not fuzzy at all.

 

With regards to the bass, IMO HE560 is better, in two regards: 1) the impact/kick is much more physical and visceral, and 2) for my preferences, the "bass : everything else" balance is better with HE560.

 

Elaborating on point 1), the test track was ‘Percussion Imaging Test’ from the album Open Your Ears, and while the HD800 rendered the various percussion and drum impacts with authority and plenty of transient detail, with HE560 the impacts felt REAL, like my ears felt the sudden changes in sound pressure with the instruments being played in real life beside me.

 

On point 2), the test track was ‘Flight’ from the album Man of Steel Soundtrack, and near the final quarter of the track there is a ramp-up in the music from complete quietness leading to a crescendo with tons of drum / brass / other orchestral instruments going off at once, and it was here that I felt HD800’s genre limitations, as I tried to get the volume where the drum impacts were decent, but as a consequence the treble at the peak of the cescendo almost wrecked my ears, meanwhile HE560’s balance handled that bit to perfection, where nothing overshadows anything and everything (from the drums to the brass) was at the boundary of pain threshold at the crescendo, without crossing that boundary. I think that’s a true test of balance and versatility, and HE560 shined in this regard.

 

Soundstage-wise HD800 is a head and shoulder ahead of all the orthos, not much to say there. In terms of 3D imaging / pinpoint precision, I thought Code-X was on par with HD800, with HE560 following close, then followed by LCD3 and then HE500.

 

The owner of the HD800 (who hosted the meet) much preferred the HD800 still, I think partly because his genre tastes are more specific and as such the relative strengths of the HD800 outweighed the relative strengths of the HE560 for him. I listen to everything though, and especially for epic soundtrack music as well as synthetic genres with bass, HE560 is a no-brainer.

 

 

Misc and loose thoughts

 

Funnily enough, my uber-modded HE500 was thought as the most emotionally engaging headphone there, despite its relative lack of technical finesse. It synergized fantastically with the 2A3mk4 and presented this beautiful albeit ever-so-slightly-coloured sound signature.

 

Overall it was a very insightful experience, being able to compare these cans without constraints in time or background noise, on these great setups. I felt that HE560 is powerful enough in technical performance to trade blows with the other flagships, yet the tonal balance is IMO the most versatile, by far. It’s not easy to have both balance versatility and mastery in technicalities, modding HE500 came close, but not quite. Code-X got it down to a tee, with even better technical performance than HE560, though the presentation is different. 

 

Edit:

 

Forgot to mention, in terms of comfort? I expected HD800 to be much better than HE560 but no, I actually find the new Hifiman to be more comfortable than HD800 slightly! (HD800’s conventional headband is still less weight-distributing than the HE560 suspension headband, and HD800’s earpads were a bit too thin and I felt a bit of localized pressure along my cheeks, while HE560 earpads just sort of melt around my ears without any localized pressure). Other headphones were so-so in comfort, except LCD3 which was unfortunately very unpleasant to wear, with a massive blistering hotspot on the tip of the headband, and the earpads create this suction effect that is off-putting, to say the least.


Edited by jerg - 5/3/14 at 5:30pm
post #1820 of 6007

I was listening to the 560 and the LCD2. To me, the 560 are everything the LCD2 are not by comparison and could have been. They are faster, have better transient attach with leading edge of sound more precise the and trailing edge with more and better decay. The bass is better as well, with more detail within the bass. 


Edited by jamato8 - 5/3/14 at 5:23pm
post #1821 of 6007

Thanks Jerg!! I enjoyed reading your comparisons. 

post #1822 of 6007

what matt said, thanks !

post #1823 of 6007

Thanks for the info Jerg! :D

post #1824 of 6007

Regarding the conversation a few pages back about customs....aren't the Hifiman declaring a low value anymore for their headphones in order to avoid customs, taxes and duties altogether?

post #1825 of 6007
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoom25 View Post
 

Regarding the conversation a few pages back about customs....aren't the Hifiman declaring a low value anymore for their headphones in order to avoid customs, taxes and duties altogether?

I wonder about this also.

 

Those who received these preorder HE560s should be able to see the declared values on their customs declaration forms?

post #1826 of 6007
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post

I wonder about this also.

Those who received these preorder HE560s should be able to see the declared values on their customs declaration forms?
Hopefully it's around 300usd tongue.gif
post #1827 of 6007
Quote:
Originally Posted by TJochum24 View Post
 

I got my sumptuous HE-560's in last night and just wanted to share a few pictures with you guys who are anxiously awaiting the arrival of your own pair!  I have not had much of a chance to get a great listen to them yet so I am not going to write a full impression on them just quite yet. However, to me, the first thing i noticed when I started listening to it was that, listening at low volume levels was nothing short of brilliant.  The level of detail that you are able to get from them with minimal volume is hard to imagine.  It literally loses no texture with the volume knob being turned down to almost a whisper.  Instrument separation is also done very well with what i have heard so far.  Anyhow, i know that is extremely quick and dirty but i really have only had a chance to get about 20 minutes of listening in on them thus far.  I will keep posted later tonight when i listening to them throughout the day.  

 

 

Great impressions - I also wrote about the HE-560 being a great low volume performer, like my HE-6.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post
 

Here it is, un-editorialized off-my-head thoughts from the private meet today. I'll also quote it in first post because it's probably gonna be helpful info in the long run.

 

We had both a ss (PWDmk2 -> Burson conductor) and a tube (PWDmk2 -> Eddie Current 2A3mk4) setup going.

 

The bulk of my comparisons were with HE560 vs HD800; so I’ll briefly go over how the other two (LCD3 and Code-X) felt in comparison first... snip ...

 

 

HD800

 

HD800 vs HE560 was a highly interesting comparison, and we had some fun arguments regarding it when we compared the two. Upon critical listening, I found HD800 to still have the greatest amount of treble microdetail extraction (better than anything else), meaning things like the texture of the strings in a violin piece, or rasp of a voice in a vocal piece, but HE560s are surprisingly close in this regard.

 

Midrange-wise I actually prefer the HE560 to the HD800, as the latter felt comparatively a bit too diffused and lacking in cohesiveness/solidarity, which is again very apparent with good violin/vocal tracks I tested with; both had excellent midrange transparency and were not fuzzy at all.

 

With regards to the bass, IMO HE560 is better, in two regards: 1) the impact/kick is much more physical and visceral, and 2) for my preferences, the "bass : everything else" balance is better with HE560.

 

Elaborating on point 1), the test track was ‘Percussion Imaging Test’ from the album Open Your Ears, and while the HD800 rendered the various percussion and drum impacts with authority and plenty of transient detail, with HE560 the impacts felt REAL, like my ears felt the sudden changes in sound pressure with the instruments being played in real life beside me.

 

On point 2), the test track was ‘Flight’ from the album Man of Steel Soundtrack, and near the final quarter of the track there is a ramp-up in the music from complete quietness leading to a crescendo with tons of drum / brass / other orchestral instruments going off at once, and it was here that I felt HD800’s genre limitations, as I tried to get the volume where the drum impacts were decent, but as a consequence the treble at the peak of the cescendo almost wrecked my ears, meanwhile HE560’s balance handled that bit to perfection, where nothing overshadows anything and everything (from the drums to the brass) was at the boundary of pain threshold at the crescendo, without crossing that boundary. I think that’s a true test of balance and versatility, and HE560 shined in this regard.

 

Soundstage-wise HD800 is a head and shoulder ahead of all the orthos, not much to say there. In terms of 3D imaging / pinpoint precision, I thought Code-X was on par with HD800, with HE560 following close, then followed by LCD3 and then HE500.

 

The owner of the HD800 (who hosted the meet) much preferred the HD800 still, I think partly because his genre tastes are more specific and as such the relative strengths of the HD800 outweighed the relative strengths of the HE560 for him. I listen to everything though, and especially for epic soundtrack music as well as synthetic genres with bass, HE560 is a no-brainer.

 

 

Misc and loose thoughts

 

Funnily enough, my uber-modded HE500 was thought as the most emotionally engaging headphone there, despite its relative lack of technical finesse. It synergized fantastically with the 2A3mk4 and presented this beautiful albeit ever-so-slightly-coloured sound signature.

 

Overall it was a very insightful experience, being able to compare these cans without constraints in time or background noise, on these great setups. I felt that HE560 is powerful enough in technical performance to trade blows with the other flagships, yet the tonal balance is IMO the most versatile, by far. It’s not easy to have both balance versatility and mastery in technicalities, modding HE500 came close, but not quite. Code-X got it down to a tee, with even better technical performance than HE560, though the presentation is different. 

 

Edit:

 

Forgot to mention, in terms of comfort? I expected HD800 to be much better than HE560 but no, I actually find the new Hifiman to be more comfortable than HD800 slightly! (HD800’s conventional headband is still less weight-distributing than the HE560 suspension headband, and HD800’s earpads were a bit too thin and I felt a bit of localized pressure along my cheeks, while HE560 earpads just sort of melt around my ears without any localized pressure). Other headphones were so-so in comfort, except LCD3 which was unfortunately very unpleasant to wear, with a massive blistering hotspot on the tip of the headband, and the earpads create this suction effect that is off-putting, to say the least.

 

I concur with your HE-560 vs HD800 impressions, especially about (1) the mids being a little more diffuse and distant with the HD800, and (2) about having to turn the HD800 volume up enough to create good impact which then makes the highs become too much. Note - with the EF-6 amp the HD800 do get more visceral without having to turn it up so high that the highs drill into you. Same thing with the RSA F-35 Lightning balanced portable amp - It's really quite a feat.

post #1828 of 6007

Just an update about the non-matching earpds: a HiFiMAN rep confirmed that there is indeed only one mould for the latest production version of the earpads, so the cross-stitch not lining up is completely normal and intentional!

post #1829 of 6007
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ultracer View Post


Hopefully it's around 300usd tongue.gif

I was talking along the lines of around $20. You're allowed around $100 and after that it starts applying.

 

Hifiman usually gifts it you. I've always praised this about Hifiman over Audeze in the past when looking for planars.

post #1830 of 6007
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoom25 View Post
 

I was talking along the lines of around $20. You're allowed around $100 and after that it starts applying.

 

Hifiman usually gifts it you. I've always praised this about Hifiman over Audeze in the past when looking for planars.

I'm sorry if this is too off topic, but in Singapore, if the goods cost more than 400 SGD (around 319 USD), then 7% tax will be applied.

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