Hifiman he-400i Impressions and Discussion
Jul 5, 2015 at 2:10 PM Post #4,426 of 14,355

john57

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Hey John,
I think it was my set of 400i that you heard. Another thing you may consider is the grill mod. I did find that it gave what I interpreted as a bit more air... and some soundstage improvement as well.
Tell me more about the Gotham cable.

Normally I use the Canare star quad cable for low cost decent quality for my cable runs. The 400i stock cable is too short and I needed a longer cable. My Oppo Ha-1 was a bit straining to drive the HE400i using the 1/4 output with the stock cable. I also needed a 4-pin XLR balanced cable to allow my Oppo Ha-1 to drive the 400i to its fullness and also to my LD VI+. I brought my cable from Dyson Audio on Ebay. I use a piggy back adapter for my IFI Retro amp.  The Gotham cable is thinner than the Canare cable and tangle a bit easier also.  The Gotham cable is working out just fine. Since the 400i is a bit mellow it is a great match to the slightly brighter OPPO Ha-1. The soundstage is becoming very good and I do go back to my other headphones just to keep my vantage point on soundstage the same. I was with the stock cable was getting a bit of roughness in the upper midrange  or lower treble as shown in this CSD plot. Now with the new cable the treble spike is less and cleaner.

 
Jul 5, 2015 at 4:34 PM Post #4,427 of 14,355

cj42

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These headphones got my interest and i started thinking of getting a pair, so i started reading impressions in this thread. I have to comment about the "amped vs unamped" argument i read few pages back. I currently have SoundMAGIC HP100 headphones , which are 32ohms with 95db/mW sensitivity (pretty close to the 400i) - i don't know if planar vs dynamic makes a difference here , but in case it doesn't: i tried my HP100s unamped , amped with a budget portable amp (SMSL sAp-5) , and amped with Magni 2 Uber  - i could drive them louder than i could tolerate even directly from my laptop (let alone using amps), but i could clearly hear the differences between the 3, especially in the low frequencies (i used the sAp-5 for months before i got the Magni 2 uber, and i was surprised with the differences i heard the first time i used the Magni 2 uber - so i'm confident its not placebo). On the other hand, i have a pair of Grado SR60i's (32ohms as well but with higher sensitivity) , that didn't get affected much by amping (maybe they just don't scale up much like the HP100s do). With that said, i can say that driving headphones loud enough doesn't always exclude the need for a good amp (unless, again, planars are different than dynamic in this regard).
 
 
 
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Now, i need some consult :D
How good are these for rock and metal music, and gaming? (i know the soundstage isn't the largest but i read that the imaging is good and i'd like to hear impressions from gamers).
Do you suggest other headphones in the same price range that are better for my needs? Are there headphones that are a little more expensive that i better save up for and get instead?
My rig: Modi (1st edition) and Magni 2 Uber.
 
Jul 5, 2015 at 4:54 PM Post #4,428 of 14,355

DavidA

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Yeah, that is why I thought about the magni 2 and the Asgard 2. I will keep the Vali no matter what for my office. From other generic posts comparing the M2 and the A2, it seems that the Magni 2 can be brighter. The Asgard 2 is slightly more expensive but a better investment given that I already have a Vali?


Didn't care for the Asgard2 and HE-400i pairing, a little too bright for me.  Much better results with either Lyr2 or Ember, for flexibility the Ember is hard to beat as it works good with planar and high impedance headphones quite well.  Also the other amps from Garage 1217 seem to have a good following also and are cheaper than the Ember
 
Jul 5, 2015 at 6:40 PM Post #4,429 of 14,355

rovopio

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  These headphones got my interest and i started thinking of getting a pair, so i started reading impressions in this thread. I have to comment about the "amped vs unamped" argument i read few pages back. I currently have SoundMAGIC HP100 headphones , which are 32ohms with 95db/mW sensitivity (pretty close to the 400i) - i don't know if planar vs dynamic makes a difference here , but in case it doesn't: i tried my HP100s unamped , amped with a budget portable amp (SMSL sAp-5) , and amped with Magni 2 Uber  - i could drive them louder than i could tolerate even directly from my laptop (let alone using amps), but i could clearly hear the differences between the 3, especially in the low frequencies (i used the sAp-5 for months before i got the Magni 2 uber, and i was surprised with the differences i heard the first time i used the Magni 2 uber - so i'm confident its not placebo). On the other hand, i have a pair of Grado SR60i's (32ohms as well but with higher sensitivity) , that didn't get affected much by amping (maybe they just don't scale up much like the HP100s do). With that said, i can say that driving headphones loud enough doesn't always exclude the need for a good amp (unless, again, planars are different than dynamic in this regard).
 
 
 
----------
 
Now, i need some consult :D
How good are these for rock and metal music, and gaming? (i know the soundstage isn't the largest but i read that the imaging is good and i'd like to hear impressions from gamers).
Do you suggest other headphones in the same price range that are better for my needs? Are there headphones that are a little more expensive that i better save up for and get instead?
My rig: Modi (1st edition) and Magni 2 Uber.

 
Before I got the 400i, i was considering hd650 - 400i - and z7.
Ended up with he-400i in the end. I cant' answer your question but i'm giving you some perspective on what I've done. Particularly because my rig is almost the same with yours (magni 2 uber).
 
Jul 6, 2015 at 5:52 AM Post #4,430 of 14,355

paulguru

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Anyone can say me how is this 400i compared to HD650 ?
Specially in treble and mids sections ....
 
what is the most relaxed headphone ( the less fatiguing ) between HD650 and 400i ?
 
Is it easy to drive ?
 
Jul 6, 2015 at 8:19 AM Post #4,432 of 14,355

marhol

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How good are these for rock and metal music, and gaming? 

 
HE-400i is a very fitting headphone for vocals and guitar genres, I´ve listened rock and metal with HE-400i and I can recommend it. The headphone has a balanced tonality, articulate sound with a very good PRaT. About gaming - sorry I´m not the right person to answer that...(I play only chess
wink.gif
online)
 
  Anyone can say me how is this 400i compared to HD650 ?
Specially in treble and mids sections ....
 
what is the most relaxed headphone ( the less fatiguing ) between HD650 and 400i ?
 
Is it easy to drive ?

I can´t answer it from my personal experience, cause I´ve not heard HD 650 yet, but there is plenty of comparison on the internet e.g. http://www.theaudiophileman.com/#!hifiman-400i/ckt9  or http://www.head-fi.org/t/762957/from-sennheiser-hd-650-to-hifiman-he-400i-theres-no-way-back
HE-400i is moderately easy to drive, its easier to drive than let´s say DT 990 Pro (250 Ohm, SPL 96 dB). but there are some even easier to drive planars like e.g. Oppo PM1, PM2, PM 3...
 
Jul 6, 2015 at 10:22 AM Post #4,433 of 14,355

john57

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  Anyone can say me how is this 400i compared to HD650 ?
Specially in treble and mids sections ....
 
what is the most relaxed headphone ( the less fatiguing ) between HD650 and 400i ?
 
Is it easy to drive ?

I heard both at the Denver meet I really like the 400i. The 400i is one of my most relaxed headphones. For me the 400i is a bit clearer than the HD650.
 
Jul 6, 2015 at 11:25 AM Post #4,434 of 14,355

paulguru

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  I heard both at the Denver meet I really like the 400i. The 400i is one of my most relaxed headphones. For me the 400i is a bit clearer than the HD650.

So speaking about only relaxing ..... the 400i is much close to HD650 or better ?
I have some problem with HD600 ( my ears is sensible ) and im looking for an extreme less fatigue Hifi headphone :)
 
400i is not a brighter headphone than 650d ?
 
Jul 6, 2015 at 1:03 PM Post #4,435 of 14,355

DavidA

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  So speaking about only relaxing ..... the 400i is much close to HD650 or better ?
I have some problem with HD600 ( my ears is sensible ) and im looking for an extreme less fatigue Hifi headphone :)
 
400i is not a brighter headphone than 650d ?


Own both, HE-400i is brighter than HD-650, HE-400i is easier to drive, DAC/AMP will make a difference in the sound, I use BH Crack for HD-650 and Project Ember for HE-400i.  As for relaxing, I would say the HD-650 is much more relaxing, should really try them since everyone hears differently.
 
Jul 6, 2015 at 1:27 PM Post #4,436 of 14,355

manbear

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I dont game but i really like the 400i for movies. Dialogue is clear and forward, explosions are forceful without being excessive, and they take just enough edge off gunshots and effects to lose the harshness but not the energy. Music and surround effects are nicely layered and directional as well. I imagine these qualities translate well to gaming.

In contrast, i was surprised by how much I dont like the TH600 for movies. Way too much bass, dialogue is recessed, and harsh. And i like the TH600 just as much, if not more, than the 400i for music. Just goes to show how movies are mixed, i suppose.
 
Jul 6, 2015 at 1:39 PM Post #4,437 of 14,355

DavidA

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I dont game but i really like the 400i for movies. Dialogue is clear and forward, explosions are forceful without being excessive, and they take just enough edge off gunshots and effects to lose the harshness but not the energy. Music and surround effects are nicely layered and directional as well. I imagine these qualities translate well to gaming.

In contrast, i was surprised by how much I dont like the TH600 for movies. Way too much bass, dialogue is recessed, and harsh. And i like the TH600 just as much, if not more, than the 400i for music. Just goes to show how movies are mixed, i suppose.


Agree with you about the HE-400i for movies but still like the HD-700 better.  And the TH-600 really does many genres of music quite well.
 
Jul 6, 2015 at 3:10 PM Post #4,438 of 14,355

rovopio

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  So speaking about only relaxing ..... the 400i is much close to HD650 or better ?
I have some problem with HD600 ( my ears is sensible ) and im looking for an extreme less fatigue Hifi headphone :)
 
400i is not a brighter headphone than 650d ?

i have the same problem with you. I'm safe with he-400i.

Stay away from Beyerdynamic and Grado though, for your case. Hope that helps.
 
Jul 6, 2015 at 5:09 PM Post #4,439 of 14,355

Focker

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Hey guys...
 
Just out of curiosity, are there people on here who actually prefer the original HE-400 over the 400i in terms of sound only? 
 
Thanks
 

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