General Information


Frequency response 8Hz - 65KHz
Impedance 50 Ohms
Sensitivity 83.5dB
Weight 470g (16.58 oz)



100+ Head-Fier
I use the replacement band for the HE400i (which is, I believe, the same as is on your Arya just with different badging). These can be purchased from Hifiman directly for $75, and make this headphone 10x more comfortable IMO. I also have this HE400i suspension-style headband on my Sundara, but for aesthetics alone. I hate the look of the 90-degree twisted yoke thingy on the stock band, though it never gave me any issues comfort-wise. To put this headband on the SunnyD required some enlargement of the mounting holes in the metal cups with a cordless drill, but the whole job didn't take more than an hour I don't think. Anyway, welcome to the HE-6-O'rama club!


Headphoneus Supremus
Most of what follows seems problematic: so let me be clear. At the price of $599 (or less) if you have the power required, it's the best all music can I know at under $1k.

The sound: potent, technical. Not warm. Needs 4 wpc @ 50 ohms to have the headroom and full flowering of the bass. Lower bass (starting at about 70 Hz, and obvious under 40 Hz) tails off a bit in volume, but the timbre is really good, and they are quick also. There is a suck out at about 1840 Hz that makes female vocals sound a slightly hollow/edgy. There is some ringing at ~3.5 and ~9.2 that gives a bit too much sheen on the treble. These are nits. These cans can play anything well or better. But for exceptional recordings of classical - the timbre isn't as good as the standard HD-600. They will take bass EQ very well, much better than say a 6 or 8 Series Senn. If you like closed bass head phones, you can EQ them to that sort of thing.

The headband isn't as good as the v1, and certainly nowhere near as good as the HEX v2. Consider replacement if it doesn't work for you. As a confirmed non believer in speaker, interconnect audibility HFM cables came as a shock. The supplied ones are audibly in double blind inferior to the most humble DIY O2 free cable. I also find the pads to not give full voice to these very fine headphones. My preference for SQ is to have the rear screens off as well, but only in an env where no pets or children can cause issues.

Appreciates EQ. If you have a parametric, it likes two bass shelves: a mild +1.2 at 75 Hz down, and a +2.6 at 38 Hz down - for me that gives a flat, non bass head experience. The next issue is the suckout at 1.8k. Needs a +3.6 at ~1840 Q 2.2. But once you have that (takes away the hollow edge on female vocals), there is a small broad rise from about 500-1000 that gets accentuated, but a mild -1.4 db centered in the high 600's gets that. Very narrow (high Q) settings around 3.5k and 9.2k get the subtle ringing out of perception. I use about a -3.6 db on both. The 9.2k one can range from high 8's to low 10k range, unit variation due to tension of the mylar. It can take some time to hunt down, but its there.

Modified and EQ'd these are better IMO than the first two Arya's, any Ananda, XS, HEX v2. You have to get to the Audeze XC-2021, HFM v2 (closeout), used OG LCD-4, HD-800 (on OTL amp) before you get to cans that rival or better the HE-6 SE (either version).


100+ Head-Fier
I purchased the HifiMan HE6SEv2 on the cheap last summer (2022), NIB. It was dispatched directly from China. I don't have the gear to drive it (or so I thought) but I wanted to own the cans and I couldn't pass up on the price. I was visiting family at the time in the US so the only gear I had with me was an iFi iDSD Signature. Of course I plugged the HE6's in just to give them a go. What I found was that putting the iDSD Signature into "turbo-mode" and using xBass+/3D+ (which I mostly use anyway) could actually could drive the HE6's. Color me impressed by the iFi iDSD Signature! Admittedly, I don't have a source with 4 wpc @ 50 ohms to compare it with but I know if the music seems flat and dull or if it's lively and dimensional and generously producing bass, mids, vocals and treble. I found the combo to be incredibly revealing.

Worth noting is how much the HE6's make the iFi amp work. When watching streaming on my iPad the amp did not have to work very hard and would stay cool. Put on some music and pump up the volume then yea, the amp would get very, very warm. I would not push it for long listening sessions.

One thing I discovered that I like about the HE6's is something that can probably be attributed to its inefficiency. I could listen to music and high volume without discomfort. They bring out the frequency range so that one can hear the subtle nuances in the music without the forward-fronting instruments taking over or sound distortion. This to me seems to be the magic of inefficient headphones.

Once I got home to my abode in Stockholm I plugged the HE6's into the Drop THX AAA 789. Setting the Drop amp to the highest gain setting, the performance did not come close to the performance of the iFi amp. I also own two tube amps and those simply did not play well with the HE6's which is a general thing with planars. My Arya's, Ananada's and LCD-X's don't like the tube amps either.

Coming back around to the actual purchase, like I said I got these HE6's on the cheap and it was shipped directly from China. The box and the packaging was no-frills. The headband was the cheapest one HifiMan offers. When I registered my product on the HifiMan website I queried them about the best headband upgrade for the HE6's. I couldn't believe the answer. They said basically "there isn't one". They were not willing to upsell me a headband and make more money! Can you believe it? Well I called BS on that but I did not get into it with the sales rep. I just ordered their best headband upgrade which at the time was $75. Was there a problem applying it to the HE6's even when the website specifically does not say the headband is for HE6's? No, of course not. It was super easy, barely an inconvenience. I also ordered Dekoni Hybrid Elite earpads and slapped those on as well.

Here's my suspicion, unconfirmed speculation on my part. HifiMan wants to sell the HE6's on the cheap to get them out of inventory but they also sell HE6's for three-to-four times the price in regular retail. When you purchase the expensive retail version then you get the nicer box and the nicer headband and maybe some different ear pads and cables. The last two items I'm not sure about. If you get a brand-spanking new HE6SEv2 on the cheap, like more than $1000 less than the highest regular retail price, they're not to keen on you spending 75 bucks and upgrading the headphones to what is essentially the version that is over $1000 more. But that's exactly what I did.

Did you read this far? Cool. Share your thoughts and experience and most important for me, suggest some good amp-pairings that don't break the bank. My budget for a new amp would be up to $2000, maybe up to $3000 if I push it. More than that it would have to be an outstanding amp worth the serious commitment. I don't believe in "end-game" anything but I will eventually purchase an amp in that price class which I expect will be able to deliver high performance for all kinds of cans for years to come. I prefer 4-pin XLR and Pentaconn over 3-pin XLR and I'd mostly prefer both 4-pin XLR and Pentaconn but I know that's not so common. Yes I can use adapters and I have adapters for everything but if I purchase an expensive amp I should not need to use an adapter for balanced headphones.

Thanks for reading my tirade if you made it this far. I'm a writer, so I write. Brevity is not one of my qualities.