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HIFIMAN Arya - Impressions Thread

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by XERO1, Oct 5, 2018.
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  1. Hifiearspeakers
    Yes. But it’s presented differently. As much as I love the expansive soundstage of the 800S, I wouldn’t necessarily call it accurate. It tries to spread out everything that is piped through them. So when you listen to music that is very complex like orchestral and rock opera type stuff like Pink Floyd, it sounds freaking amazing. But when you listen to a solo artist singing unplugged with just one acoustic guitar, they still try to make it sound like the music is surrounding you. But that’s not how it should sound. It should sound like there’s one dude sitting in front of you with an acoustic guitar and no microphone. In that scenario, the soundstage should sound intimate.

    So I’d say that the 800S will sound more expansive than the Arya with the layering of instruments having more space between them, but with it not being as accurate for some types of music.

    The Arya is great with layering and with a more realistic size and presentation, but painted across a smaller canvas.

    Which is better? That will solely be based on preference. Even though the 800S can make things sound artificially wide, I still Iove it.

    Which is more universally accurate? Arya

    And if a new planar comes out that also makes music sound artificially wide like the 800S, I will take it.

    But I’m an admitted soundstage freak. I don’t care which is more accurate. With all things being equal, I’ll take the larger and wider soundstage headphone every time.
  2. Serge Bernamej
    Ahahah excellent response again ! I’ll say it again, I only listen to classical music; but poeple have the misconception that bass is not important with classical. on the contrary, classical especially needs the body !
    I’m with you on soundstage ! Although I loved the Clear, even with it’s smaller soundstage it still has good seperation.
    So basically Arya will be very good technically but in smaller soundstage; i’m ok with that for sure !
    Hifiearspeakers likes this.
  3. mixman
    Thanks a lot for your great response! Without guys like you and Bagwell it would be hard to make heads or tales of the Hifiman lineup! let me induldge in a question. How do the HEX, Arya and HEK matchup against the Audeze lineup? I have an LCD X love the dynamics, impact and clarity, I would like a better soundstage, more comfort, less weight. How does the HM lineup match up against the LCD's? What do they do better and what do they do worse ?
    Hifiearspeakers likes this.
  4. bagwell359
    Note: My dealer is very slow to get new models in: E2, Arya... I wish I could give a complete write-up.

    I liked the LCD3 after a short demo. It's better than the Ananda which is my least favorite HFM can. I think the HEX v2 is a great can, maybe best buy used these days. The LCD3 is a bit more lively. But I like the MrSpeakers Ether C more. I expect the Arya's might be a good battle with the LCD3.

    Serge: have you tried the Quad yet? That might be up your alley.
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019
  5. Hifiearspeakers
    All the Audeze LCD also share the same house sound with small differences between them. Of course they’re going to be much heavier but also better built, so pick your poison.

    The Audeze’s will all have a thicker sound and smaller soundstage compared to Hifiman, except for the newer LCD 3 Fazor. I found those to have a pretty wide soundstage and much less rolled off treble, and they are generally a pretty good headphone. My only complaint is that I think they’re overpriced.

    I love the bass on the LCD X. It’s my favorite bass of any can I’ve heard so far at any price point. It’s tight and has solid impact. The problem with all of the Audeze I’ve heard, other than the 3 Fazor, is that they have too rolled off upper mids and treble, and a smaller soundstage compared to Hifiman. But they’re ALL built better but also MUCH heavier. Another weakness of Audeze is that I don’t think they have very good resolution. They have a pleasing sound, but at the cost of a lot of detail. That’s a deal breaker for me.

    Here’s what needs to happen. Hifiman needs to do a collaboration with Audeze and they need to make a hybrid headphone. Because Hifiman does a much better job on the upper mids, treble, weight, resolution, and soundstage. But Audeze does a much better job on bass and build quality.

    Build me a headphone with Audeze LCD X bass and build quality, Hifiman HEK V2 mids, HEX V2 treble, Hifiman weight, and Hifiman resolution, and my headphone journey is over.
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019
    betula, CoFire, Atgm1 and 1 other person like this.
  6. kid vic
    Audeze doesn't exactly have better QC, the first run of LCD-4s had loads of driver failures due (in part) to the earpads sealing to tightly against users heads, they also are notorious for having a huge sonic drift across models where no two LCD-4s sound the same and there is an entire thread for LCD-3 driver failures.

    Regarding the Hifiman/Audeze dream unification I recall reading that the reason Audeze has better bass is because they use larger magnets and a looser diaphragm that creates more excursion, in turn moving more air, whereas Hifiman use lighter magnets, lighter diaphragms and a higher tension on the diaphragm in order to get a faster response and overall better resolution above a certain frequency. Because of the famous lightness of Fangs "supernano" material that is "lighter than air" it physically can't move air at a comparable volume even if it were the same overall size.

    Note: I'm not a designer or engineer, I remember reading this explanation somewhere but I can not personally corroborate it.
    Also: I believe that the Susvara was supposed to be Hifimans attempt at addressing some of these things, I won't say that as anything more than speculation though.
    Hifiearspeakers likes this.
  7. Hifiearspeakers
    Good points. But I never said Audeze had better quality control. I said they have better build quality. They use more premium materials but the trade off is that it feels like you’re wearing a Volvo on your head.

    The driver failures were because their leather earpads sealed too tightly. So if you put them on too fast or hard, the pressure build up could blow out the drivers. The newer ones have spacers now to prevent that from happening. Hifiman have the most open, open backs, so the pressure always dissipates rapidly. Plus they use fabric pads on their higher end line instead of leather, so they breathe more and don’t seal airtight.
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019
    mixman, omniweltall and kid vic like this.
  8. kid vic
    True indeed, I really liked the LCD-Xs everytime I've tried them too. I wish the Hifiman earpads weren't so proprietary, hopefully Dekoni can make something happen.
    Hifiearspeakers likes this.
  9. franz12
    In terms of build quality, I would put senn and hifiman into together. I don't think hd800s has more premium materials than ananda.
    Actually, I don't care whether they are made of wood, plastic, or metal as long as they are comfortable, sound good and don't break. Once I wear them, I don't see them while I listen, so why should I care?

    Sundara had a very high failure rate as far as I can see. Hifiman might resolved that issue with Ayra, but we will see.
  10. Serge Bernamej
    That makes me think, if we buy the Arya from an authorized dealer, do you know the warranty on this ?
  11. mixman
    Ha! Loved that comment. Yeah that Volvo feeling is quite real. If anyone asked me about Audeze I would warn them that they are heavy as hell, and definitely not for small ladies or children. OTOH, I did fall asleep with my X's on last night with no ill effects, so I guess I am getting used to the weight I guess. My X's are 2018 and their clarity is really good. Definitely beats the Sundara in that regard, but of course that comparison isn't fair. Which is why I am trying to get a comparable model to compare to the X's. I am also looking into a used LCD3......late as possible, but a couple of people in that thread said they would sound a lot alike the X's so why bother so try the LCD2C which would complement the X more. Oh and prices on used LCD3 are coming down fast. A good used 2016 Fazor was sold for $850 or less on Audiogon recently, putting it near the used Ananda and HEX prices.

    OK, back to our regularly scheduled programming. Do you know why the Arya is just not getting more press, is it Hifiman is not promoting it or are people just oblivious to what's in their lineup these days? Hell, the Edition XX is starting to get more press and it's not scheduled to drop for another 3 months!
    Hifiearspeakers likes this.
  12. Hifiearspeakers
    Getting enough press isn’t what’s holding back the Arya or any other new Hifiman. What’s holding their sales back is the way Hifiman has alienated and abused its early adopters through the last few years. They release too many models before they’re really finished products and at very high prices. Then they fix their early shortcomings and release a V2 version and sometimes the V2 costs less than the V1. Then the value of the V1 plummets and the early adopters are left holding the bag.

    Then to add insult to injury, Hifiman makes things worse for even the late adopters, by releasing newer models every 3 months which saturates the market,confuses customers, and again, devalues their headphones.

    Fang knows how to make a great sounding headphone and make it light and comfortable. But Fang is bat sh!t crazy when it comes to marketing and a functional, long-term business model. He sees everything as the here and now, and doesn’t contemplate long-term repercussions for his get rich quick schemes. Hifiman needs to look at companies, like Sennheiser, to learn how to play the long game.
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2019
  13. mixman
    Unfortunately, used HEX's are no longer the bargains they used to be, for one, they have dried up in the market quite a bit and second, I guess because of these threads, those that have HEX's know what they have, and are not selling them at such a loss anymore. The last sale here the guy would not budge from $800, he knew the HEX's were more desired than Ananda's. Oh and they were sold before two sets of Ananda that are sill in the classifieds. Also, Audio46 which probably has some of the last pair of new HEX's are not budging much on the price at all. As a matter of fact, the discount for the Arya is more than their discount on the discontinued HEX's, putting the prices not too far from each other.
    Hifiearspeakers likes this.
  14. Hifiearspeakers
    Leave it to Hifiman to discontinue one of their best headphones of all time...

    They should bring back the HEX V2 and discontinue the Ananda.
    CoFire and phthora like this.
  15. mixman
    Well someone else is ....(cough) Massdrop, and even if it doesn't sound quite as good, will still make a ton of money.
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