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HifiMAN HE-6 Planar Magnetic Headphone

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by jigf, May 21, 2010.
  1. GrdironTrenches
    so the nfb 1amp has good specs, seems like it allows he6 to show its true beauty. the project ember makes the he6 sound like my he 560. nfb 1 can output 8 watts versus project embers 2 wattals
  2. TonyNewman
    My own experience is that 8W gets you almost everything that the HE6 can deliver. Only the most demanding bass wants more than that. Pounding kettle drums, for example, really shine from the speaker taps on my power amp. The 8W from my WA5 or 430HA doesn't quite have the same punch and impact (but is still very good).
  3. GrdironTrenches
    good deal
  4. Clemmaster
    I have the SA-31SE, which puts 10W @40Ω. It drives all the Hifiman planars very well except the HE-6, which sounds shrill on it.
    Power rating is not everything.
    My NFB-27 built-in amp did a much better job with the HE-6, while being rated lower than the SA-31SE. It's the only instance where I preferred the builtin amp in the NFB-27 (balanced, of course) to the SA-31SE, actually (I loved the latter's sound character. The NFB-27 was colder by comparison).
    I wouldn't recommend the smaller amps for the HE-6. Get a used Master-9 or the Reference 10.32 that's in the F/S if you can stretch your budget a bit.
  5. NZtechfreak
    The Reference 10.32 was not good with the HE6 in my experience.
  6. Rhamnetin
    Indeed.  The HE-6's treble presentation can be problematic with solid state amps.  I consider it to be a mostly neutral treble, but as with other headphones with neutral treble, they can sound shrill with many solid state amps.  If I were buying an HE-6 myself, I'd shoot for a Ray Samuels Dark Star or fully upgraded Woo Audio WA5 with aftermarket tubes (the ones Woo offers should be a great place to start) even though I've never personally heard either.  Or, if I couldn't afford to drop $3k - 10k on an amp, I'd look for a good tube power amp.
  7. LancerFIN

    Trying to fix treble issues with amp? Master 11 (new ref. 10.32) is quite good with modified HE-6.
  8. ohhgourami

    RSA Dark Star or Woo? [​IMG]
    Can get an amazing amps at the price like the Pass INT30A, Krell FPB 300cx, and many more. Only solid state headphone amps make the HE-6 sound shrill. I have yet to hear a solid state power amp do that.
  9. Fearless1
    Not on my J2....Not on my 980SX, so no.
  10. Velomane
    My Blue Circle BmPH sounds amazing from the lowest note to the highest. No harshness whatsoever.
  11. LarsHP
    ... and not any SS amp I have heard it with either. It did sound beautiful in the mids and treble with Leben CS300, but none of the SS amps I have used HE-6 with sounded problematic.
  12. ohhgourami

    Hard to imagine anything sound shill on a Leben. HAHAHA
  13. JamieMcC
    I can safely say Vinyl + HE-6 + Nelson Pass 6W mono blocks make a great combination. In fact it has me wondering about spending the money I had ear marked for a new dac on upgrading the turntable and buying more LPs instead.
  14. Rhamnetin
    You don't know what "can be" means?  It depends on the amp, and also your ears.  Just because you have tested it on two amps doesn't mean it will never sound shrill or harsh on any solid state amp.  Not all amps are made equal.  [​IMG]
    If you want to tell me that HE-6 treble harshness on solid state amps is unheard of (and I didn't specify speaker or headphone amps) then suit yourself, but it's a common concern.
    It's great that several of you listed amp recommendations though.  The HE-6 amp thread is really out of date.
  15. Hansotek
    Questyle CMA800R... Also solid state. Also not shrill.

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