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= HiFiMAN HE-560 Impressions & Discussion Thread = - Page 522

post #7816 of 7825
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post
 

 

It absolutely does.  Gain switches are on the back (-12, -6, +6, +12).. so it's got the versatility to drive everything from my highly sensitive cIEM (UERM) to the 560 with ease.  Here's the eBay page from where I purchased it.  I had an extremely smooth transaction and the seller was excellent to deal with.  I've had the amp for a couple of weeks and couldn't be happier with it.  In my time in this hobby, I've owned and listened to enough SS amps to get a good idea of the landscape.. and this amp is better than anything I've heard at the price point..and one of the best ss amps I've heard under $1000.  It's the last solid state amp I anticipate buying for the foreseeable future, actually... I'm that satisfied with it.

Thanks for the reply. 

 

That's definitely a good find then! I'll put this amp on my interest list. 

post #7817 of 7825
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post
 

 

It absolutely does.  Gain switches are on the back (-12, -6, +6, +12).. so it's got the versatility to drive everything from my highly sensitive cIEM (UERM) to the 560 with ease.  Here's the eBay page from where I purchased it.  I had an extremely smooth transaction and the seller was excellent to deal with.  I've had the amp for a couple of weeks and couldn't be happier with it.  In my time in this hobby, I've owned and listened to enough SS amps to get a good idea of the landscape.. and this amp is better than anything I've heard at the price point..and one of the best ss amps I've heard under $1000.  It's the last solid state amp I anticipate buying for the foreseeable future, actually... I'm that satisfied with it.

 

Interesting

 

. I am building a set-up for a friend, he prefers SS over tubes. I was thinking (based on his budget, not sure on DAC yet)>>>>Polaris>>>>560. That is a nice find, well within the parameters of his budget. Would you mind a brief PM as to not divert off topic ? 

post #7818 of 7825
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill-P View Post
 

I had a bunch of pads lying around, and seeing as the HE-560 is so sensitive to pad rolling, I thought... why not?

 

Here are my impressions on numerous ear pads I have that fit the Hifiman rings, in no particular order:

 

Beyerdynamic stock white velour ear pads: Obtained from a trade. These... are something to behold. The soundstage opens up and extends to infinity. It is so massive that in some recordings, there are sounds that are pushed far into the distance, and they become almost too faint to notice. Had I not known the recording well enough, I would have overlooked such details. As a result, I had to push the volume up further than my usual comfort zone, but that resulted in some sibilance as... you guess it, the stock white Beyer ear pads sound almost like how the Focus Pads sound. Only... they push a lot more treble in there. The soundstage is impressive, but the occasional sibilance and overly bright sound is not something I was willing to put up with. For those who have an overly warm and mellow amp that rolls off the high end significantly (as in... you think the HE-560 sound "dark"), I think these ear pads are the right fit for you guys. Oh, talking about "fit", they are more comfortable than the Focus Pads, and even more than the Focus Pads A, which are padded too thick.

 

Audio Technica ATH-W1000's original protein leather (pleather) ear pads: bought an extra pair for my W1000. I figured... why not put them on the HE-560 and see how the HE-560 would behave. Wow... before we even go into sound... I'd just like to say... the comfort shoots right through the roof. The W1000 ear pads are extremely soft, so the clamping force of the HE-560 is no longer felt. The leather material is smooth to the touch. Pretty much the only thing left I can complain about comfort is that there is possibility of the pleather making me sweat after a while, but that's a minor problem. Okay, as for sound, the W1000 ear pads seems to contain some Audio Technica magic, so the whole presentation is smooth and very liquid even though I'm driving the HE-560 with a solid state amp. It's like attaching a tube to the HE-560 permanently. And yet clarity is improved. It's like lifting a veil. The Beyer pads do lift a veil but they are too bright for me to notice the extra clarity. I haven't heard anything quite like this since auditioning the Zana Deux. It's quite amazing. How about soundstage? Just a smidge less than the Beyer pads, and is generally either on par with or better than the stock Focus Pads. Until I find something better, I think these will stay as my main ear pads. Here's the only drawback that I noticed: the HE-560 sounds slightly thinner with these on compared to the other ear pads. I think that's due to the slight recession in the lower mid region. Nothing a bit of EQ (hardware... since my McIntosh has EQ knobs) can't fix, though.

 

Beyerdynamic stock protein leather (pleather) ear pads: ripped off my good ol' DT770 that I broke. These are the second step below the velour ear pads, and IMO, they are just the right balance of sound. Soundstage is only slightly behind the velour ear pads, and treble is sweetened up a notch. Basically, they sound like a blend between the Focus Pads and the Focus Pads A, only with more upper midrange. I think these have the velour pads beat in terms of sound quality. On that note, their drawback is that they are very stiff, so they can get a bit uncomfortable. Perhaps even more so than the Focus Pads. Their sound is just so right, though. It was a toss up between this one and the W1000 pads for me, and then I went with W1000 pads, but I think many will prefer this one.

 

eBay pleather ear pads for Beyer DTxx0 headphones: well, just something I bought a while ago for fun because... $10? Why not? These actually turn out to sound quite nice with the HE-560. Treble is rolled off in a polite but obvious manner, and yet upper midrange is still preserved. With these on, the HE-560 strongly reminds me of the LCD-2, except that the soundstage is still slightly open, and with some air. I think those looking for a sound that's obviously darker than stock will love these. They're $10, so the damage is very minimal compared to the other offerings mentioned here.

 

Yeah, the HE-560 is very sensitive to pads rolling, no doubt. For now, I am happy with the W1000 ear pads. I get the feeling they will absolutely love the L3000 ear pads (even more rolled off treble, stiffer so more bass), but I don't have a pair to test as of now. Perhaps someone who has them can chime in.

 

Good stuff.  Thanks a lot for sharing your impressions.

post #7819 of 7825
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill-P View Post
 

I had a bunch of pads lying around, and seeing as the HE-560 is so sensitive to pad rolling, I thought... why not?

 

Here are my impressions on numerous ear pads I have that fit the Hifiman rings, in no particular order:

 

Beyerdynamic stock white velour ear pads: Obtained from a trade. These... are something to behold. The soundstage opens up and extends to infinity. It is so massive that in some recordings, there are sounds that are pushed far into the distance, and they become almost too faint to notice. Had I not known the recording well enough, I would have overlooked such details. As a result, I had to push the volume up further than my usual comfort zone, but that resulted in some sibilance as... you guess it, the stock white Beyer ear pads sound almost like how the Focus Pads sound. Only... they push a lot more treble in there. The soundstage is impressive, but the occasional sibilance and overly bright sound is not something I was willing to put up with. For those who have an overly warm and mellow amp that rolls off the high end significantly (as in... you think the HE-560 sound "dark"), I think these ear pads are the right fit for you guys. Oh, talking about "fit", they are more comfortable than the Focus Pads, and even more than the Focus Pads A, which are padded too thick.

 

Are you talking about the pads for the custom one or the grey velour pads?

post #7820 of 7825

Well, the grill mod is done.

The fit/finish is still not perfect and pretty tight. The rings are obviously being pushed to the limits.

Anyway, for now the improvement for both the 560 and 400i is small. About 5% improvement in imaging/air/soundstage/treble clarity width for the 560 and similar improvements for the 400i.

Enough to squeeze a slight extra off either headphone but not nearly enough to make an obvious change or transform it into a different/lot better headphone.

Should any of this change, I'll make sure to mention it accordingly but this is certainly not something that'd warrant an extra comparison/review.

I am not sure it warrants the effort it took to make either... Maybe barely but this mod was pretty tough. Very little margin for error and to get the new grilles in there and make the 4 tabs click was a difficult endeavor [and the retaining rings still aren't lined up perfectly]...

 

 

 


Edited by conquerator2 - Today at 12:26 pm
post #7821 of 7825

Thank you to mandrake50 and FlySweep  for the PM's! Much appreciated!

post #7822 of 7825
Hmm, I am not sold on the grill mod yet. I'll give it a fair week to see whether or not I like it.
It's got some sonic positives but also some negatives.
It does do mostly good but it also does a thing or two that don't seem to bode well with my preferences...
I understand why some don't like it but I really wanna give it a fair shot and try to adjust a bit because it really does do some good too.

One thing's for sure, I am glad I have the Focus pads at least... With the Focus-As, the grill mod would be a big nono from me as that would completely obliterate the things I like on the stock/Focus configuration... This way, at least some of this is preserved and some more is enhanced, so I'll get used to it, I hope rolleyes.gif
post #7823 of 7825
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by conquerator2 View Post

Hmm, I am not sold on the grill mod yet. I'll give it a fair week to see whether or not I like it.
It's got some sonic positives but also some negatives.
It does do mostly good but it also does a thing or two that don't seem to bode well with my preferences...
I understand why some don't like it but I really wanna give it a fair shot and try to adjust a bit because it really does do some good too.

One thing's for sure, I am glad I have the Focus pads at least... With the Focus-As, the grill mod would be a big nono from me as that would completely obliterate the things I like on the stock/Focus configuration... This way, at least some of this is preserved and some more is enhanced, so I'll get used to it, I hope rolleyes.gif

I think the focus-A pads + grill mods synergize well in terms of presenting a very open and effortless sound signature.

 

Focus pads + regular grills or even more closed grills will give a slightly more energetic and detail-heavy presentation, which may be your preference.

post #7824 of 7825
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerg View Post

I think the focus-A pads + grill mods synergize well in terms of presenting a very open and effortless sound signature.

Focus pads + regular grills or even more closed grills will give a slightly more energetic and detail-heavy presentation, which may be your preference.

Yes, that's exactly how it is.
I do hope the grill mod + focus pads will be the golden balance and still enough to satisfy me. I like the little more air, layering and soundstage breath it does... But for now I miss the extra energy the reverberation provides. I'll do my best to appreciate the things open grills do, overtime... I don't fancy the slight loss of excitement this brought, but the gains are nice. Ugh...

I am also surprised that what graphs amount to a slight gain in bass is actually a very appreciate difference in reality. It benefits some but again also degrades other things a bit - what is appreciable with some genres might be less so with others.
I'd take the benefits of open grills, closed grills and focus pads to create me the perfect headphone... Sigh, oh well. One can dream, or wait what's next in store biggrin.gif

I guess I'll enjoy the 560 till then, one way or another.
Edited by conquerator2 - Today at 4:14 pm
post #7825 of 7825
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post
 

My solid state amp & tube/hybrid amp for the HE-560:

 

Gustard H10:

 


I would love to hear this amp, will you be attending the next local meet? I believe the next one will be in the Olympia area or somewhere in the area.

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