HE-5LE : My left driver stopped working. What now?
Jun 28, 2013 at 8:54 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 6


500+ Head-Fier
Oct 16, 2002
My HE-5LE have never had a single problem, and were working perfectly the last time I set them down. That was either this morning or last night. This evening there is no sound at all from the left driver. I switched cables, and checked my amp (NFB-10SE) with other phones. It is the driver. Strong language has been ineffective. I took the pad off, but there is nothing to see. Should I open the cup or consider sending them out for service? I don't know what Hi-Fi Man's policy is, but I probably don't have a warranty to void since I bought them used here some time ago. Basically, I'm not shy of tinkering with them so long as there is no completely unforeseen issue. Anyone have experience opening up HE series cans? Thanks!
Jun 28, 2013 at 10:32 PM Post #4 of 6
Well, I manned up and opened the cup. There still isn't much to see. As far as I can tell now, the driver just up and died. I will try to remember to bring my multimeter home from work so I can better check for input to the driver. If there's voltage going in, then I guess I will have no choice but to contact HiFiMan. I guess that will need to wait until Monday.
The driver itself seems to be sandwiched between wafers of PCB material that appear to be glued together, so don't really want to go any farther before I talk to them. (Or someone who knows more about them than me!)
I suppose this could be an excuse to convert my 325i to balanced... They're already pretty darn open just plugged single ended into my NFB-10SE. I almost should have bought that first, everything sounds good plugged into it!
EDIT: Actually, my foobar volume was about 30%. Now I'm on volume 3 on the NFB with single ended Grados. Mine does not have the lower low gain mod and it's just too powerful for efficient, balanced phones.
Jul 3, 2013 at 2:14 PM Post #6 of 6
I had no warranty to void. I did open the cup, but there was really nothing to see. The drivers them selves are basically like a near-solid mass. I guess they have to be very rigid to hold all those high powered magnets in check. Did a little searching and found a youtube video from someone who's taken a few of them apart, and it seems like it wouldn't be possible for me to get them apart cleanly. I did a little ohm testing and figured there was probably a break in the trace anyway as the solder connections appeared fine.
They have already been delivered to the HiFiMan center in DE, and I will receive a refurbished set in exchange, theoretically very quickly. It cost $125 including return shipping, plus I spent about $30 shipping them down via UPS with insurance. If anyone was curious.

Users who are viewing this thread