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Headphone comparison: Sennheiser HD 600, HD 700, HD 800, HD 25-1, and the Amperior; Audio-Technica ATH-M50s; Audez'e LCD-2 rev.2 and the LCD-3

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by windsor, May 29, 2012.
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  1. BruinAnteater
    Awesome review!!!! Wish you woulda also auditioned the Sennheiser HD650s and PX360s which is what I own. Just based on what other people say, seems like the HD650s have a warmer sound than the HD600s. I was musing the idea of one day going with either the HD700 or HD800s as I love the sound of both my Sennheisers. Mainly what I was looking for was a bit "more" in both highs and lows than what I get now fromt he HD650s from my next set of head phones. I think a few times you mentioned that the HD800s had less bass than the HD600s, and you seem to think the HD700s definitely have better bass response than either of the HD600s and HD800s.
    So my guess is, if the HD650s offer a fuller, warmer, slightly bassier sound than then 600s and the 800s are lighter in bass than the 600s, then it seems like the HD700s would be my natural step up. I am certainly not looking for anything with an unnatural response to bass (like Beats) or an unnatural response to highs (like Bose). I would like to see how the HD700s comepare to the 650s in terms of highs.
    I listen to all types of music on all types of media. Jazz, Blues, Rock, Metal, Latin, Rap...everything really. I have SACDs, CDs, 192/24 bit FLACs, regular FLACs and mp3s. My equipment is a little lacking, I mainly use the Fiio E9 desktop amp with my Yamaha HTR-3 series receiver. SACDs and CDs are played by a Sony BDP-480 player through HDMI so the receiver does the D-A conversion. But in the future I am looking to upgrade both player and pre-amp to either an Oppo 95 or Marantz UD7006 and to an Emotiva UMC-1 preamp. Havent decided on what headphone amp to get. It wouldn't be until I upgrade everything and see what the HD650s can REALLY do that I will consider buying another set of high end cans, but would appreciate if you could elaborate on anything I said, in regards to how I translated you general results.
    For portable, I use the PX360 with he E7 Amp and Cowan J3 player.
  2. Windsor
    Thanks for your kind words.
    Though I've typed what I've typed - and this goes for all of my posts - if you want to know whether a headphone sounds right for you, hearing with your own ears is the only way to know that with certainty. I hope my words point you in the direction that's right for you. :)
  3. MaximumRoom
    Your reviews lost all credibility with me when you said you could hear a difference between gold and silver contacts.
    Kaffeemann likes this.
  4. khoi14021993
    Well, you don't have his ears, do you?
    In my opinion, it's a bit unfair for the HD25-1/Amperior/M50s to be added to the review. The price difference is just simply too much, and moreover they are portable headphones. At least I wouldn't look at a comparison with the HD800 when I want to buy the M50.
    By the way, I've recabled my HD25 with the Headphile V2 cable, and it just blew my mind. The dry sound is gone, and soundstage is improved a lot.
    EDIT: Very nice writeup, BTW
  5. Windsor
    I just compared the headphones because I wanted to compare them; perhaps a different thread title could be more effective. 
    Nice to hear you're enjoying the re-cabed HD 25.
  6. grokit

    There could be other differences between the two adapters besides the contact plating material.

    edit: Reviews are subjective anyways.
  7. twizzleraddict
    Windsor, first off, great review across the different headphones and across different albums/tracks. This is definitely the way most reviews should be done, IMO, as it immediately takes the comparison directly where things matter the most: the music! 
    It's surprising that when you threw the HD700 into the mix, it's ranked right up there with the LCD-3s. I've been listening to the HD800s for several weeks and can't help but be underwhelmed by them, especially when my preference leans mostly towards the HD650s on most genres of music. I also got a chance to listen to LCD-2s yesterday and disliked their dark sounding nature (odd since the HD650s are also considered dark by nature). Compared to the HD800s though, they are still more preferably by my tastes.
    To make a long reply short, if the HD700 has the same technology as the HD800s, did you find the characteristic nature of the HD800 within the HD700 and which side of the sound signature did it lean towards, more tipped up in the top end (enabling detail retrieval to be higher), a little more balanced/neutral or towards the darker side?
    One album I really love is Johnny Cash's American recordings he did in the 90s. The remake of NIN's "Hurt" is hauntingly beautiful and dark but the beauty of it is in the guitar playing, which sounds quite natural to my ears. Not sure if you've listened to the phones on this album/track but wondering if you've done so and your thoughts on this.
    Thanks again for a wonderful read! I learn so much every day I visit head-fi from all of you! 
  8. Windsor
    Thanks for saying about the review!
    I'd say the HD 700 is a forward-sounding headphone that sounds slightly brighter than natural.
    I have American Recordings Vol. VI (Ain't No Grave), but haven't listened to it since getting the HD 600 and HD 800. I have a feeling I soon will. :)
  9. BruinAnteater
    You definitely helped out. To be honest, I purchased the HD650s PURELY on what I read on reviews and tried to figure out what people people meant with the descriptions. I can honestly say, I hit the nail on the head! The HD650s were EXACTLY what I was hoping for and they just keep getting better! The more they are used, the better they sound. When I moved from powering them using just an E7 off my audio card, to feeding them through my Yamaha then through the E9, it was yet another MAJOR leap in quality. I can't wait to continue the upgrading madness and see what these HD650s can really do.
    In no way shape or form am I done with my HD650s, I have not gotten tired or bored by them. In fact, I still get all excited whenever I get a chance to just lay down on my couch, grab a beer, and just sit there and listen to some SACDs. But of course, the buy bug always bites, and you are always looking for an excuse to buy something new! This time (the 'time' being in the next 5-7 years, not any time soon), I will have to audition the HD700 and HD800, but I get the feeling (based on your very good descriptions) that the HD700s would be what I would consider buying sometime in the distant future. 
  10. netbususer
    I definitely found this review helpful and very thorough. Thank you for taking the time to write this review with such attention to detail.
    I currently have my Beyer T1's and CSP2+ amp and really, really enjoy the sound and love tube rolling as well. (Although my wallet certainly doesn't!) Currently considering if I'd rather invest big into my first real audiophile speaker setup or just grab another set of cans for bedroom listening such as the HD650/700/800. I'm still giving it a lot of consideration but appreciated your review. My only desire would be if the T1 was included in this review as it is really MY baseline headphone. (My only Sennheiser experience is with the HD598's that were formerly mine. I thoroughly enjoyed the soundstage on the HD598 but felt like the bass was completely missing and like they were simply... missing something. (FWIW, I was using them unamped at the time.))
  11. Magick Man
    Purrin's measurements:

  12. twizzleraddict
    Is the baseline (green) measurements for HD700? I'm guessing it is but wanted to clarify...
  13. LCfiner
  14. Magick Man

    Yeah, and it's really obvious when you listen to them. I can't stand to use them for more than half an hour at my normal listening volume (~75dB) without having discomfort, and what's worse is that I keep wanting to turn them up louder due to lower output in the 2k-4kHz region. So, I'm sitting there, listening at a safe volume (I believe), then a 6kHz screech comes in causing my ears react to try and protect my hearing. Then I react by going, "holy ****, ouch!" You can see the dilemma?

    That's why I'm wondering what's going on. Are some of these different? Do some mangle your hearing while others don't? How are there such glowing reviews on one side and people taking ibuprofen on the other? None of this is making any sense to me at all.
  15. twizzleraddict
    Some people perceive this bump as being marvelously detailed. Some (like you) cause migraines! I haven't heard them yet but hope to do so soon and see if your findings (and others) match up with what I'm hearing. I'm keeping an open mind. :)
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