Hifiman HE400se
Jun 8, 2021 at 2:20 AM Post #301 of 310

samandhi

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Glad you are finding that you like them!

I don't think it is the HE400SE. And I don't necessarily think it is the stereo itself, though it could be. The most likely suspect and the weakest link in your chain is the phone and connection to the stereo. You are basically double amping the music, and you are sending it via an unclean connector. Try listening to a different source from the stereo without the phone in the mix. Put a record on and listen to it. If it isn't the stereo (or the input you are using into the stereo) then you shouldn't have distortion. On the other hand, given the age of that amp/stereo it COULD be the KA.

Remember, the best sound you will get will be decided by the weakest part of your chain. To avoid spending a ton of money down the road, I have curtailed buying a bunch of separate equipment, and just bought a great mid-tier DAP. Now I can just go straight from that to the headphones, and don't have to worry about portability, power, clean connections, etc...
 
Jun 8, 2021 at 2:43 AM Post #302 of 310

cappuchino

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Glad you are finding that you like them!

I don't think it is the HE400SE. And I don't necessarily think it is the stereo itself, though it could be. The most likely suspect and the weakest link in your chain is the phone and connection to the stereo. You are basically double amping the music, and you are sending it via an unclean connector. Try listening to a different source from the stereo without the phone in the mix. Put a record on and listen to it. If it isn't the stereo (or the input you are using into the stereo) then you shouldn't have distortion. On the other hand, given the age of that amp/stereo it COULD be the KA.

Remember, the best sound you will get will be decided by the weakest part of your chain. To avoid spending a ton of money down the road, I have curtailed buying a bunch of separate equipment, and just bought a great mid-tier DAP. Now I can just go straight from that to the headphones, and don't have to worry about portability, power, clean connections, etc...
Double amping never crossed my mind. Thanks for pointing that out.

I did try listening to some vinyl with them, though quite a short time. I'm still listening to them, and when I turn the volume down a certain degree, that distortion/crunch disappears.

But considering the distinct characteristic and quality of vinyl sound, it would be hard to determine 😆. I'll also try to connect an external player and listen to some CD or something once I get some "drive" to do that.

Thank you very much for the advice 😁



Update: Used some electric contact cleaner I also use on my electric guitars, played around with the stock cable insertion, and the sometimes appearing distortion at higher volumes disappeared.
 
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Jun 8, 2021 at 11:23 AM Post #303 of 310

pk4425

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Just hooked up the HE400se to an old Kenwood KA-7100 we had lying around the house. And one thing's for sure - I don't think I can go back to the HUD100 MK2 with the HIFIMAN + KA-7100.

I'm at a lost with the sonic difference. Imaging is sharper. Soundstage opened up. Bass hits harder and deeper and is more bodied. Separation vastly improved. Detail-retrieval is astonishing.


I do have to mention that this setup is very getto as I'm using the DAC of my phone as well as a random RCA cable I found here somewhere (not sure what its really called but I used it to connect to AUX; White and yellow-colored). Still using the stock cable and the pads which are heavenly.


Here's the specs of the amplifier I am currently running them with:
1623118999229.png


One bummer is that I hear distortion. Not sure if it's just due to dirty components (the amplifier's internals haven't been cleaned for years now. I am very sure of that.) or it's the HE400se itself.


IMG20210608102821.jpg
Try running them with a balanced cable and a powerful amp with balanced output. Your mind will be blown. :)
 
Jun 8, 2021 at 11:32 AM Post #304 of 310

SilverEars

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Double amping never crossed my mind. Thanks for pointing that out.

I did try listening to some vinyl with them, though quite a short time. I'm still listening to them, and when I turn the volume down a certain degree, that distortion/crunch disappears.

But considering the distinct characteristic and quality of vinyl sound, it would be hard to determine 😆. I'll also try to connect an external player and listen to some CD or something once I get some "drive" to do that.

Thank you very much for the advice 😁



Update: Used some electric contact cleaner I also use on my electric guitars, played around with the stock cable insertion, and the sometimes appearing distortion at higher volumes disappeared.
Don't worry about double amping. All DACs have an amplified output, but people will never say it's double amping or really can point out what is wrong with double amping in general.

Consider all the preamps used for input to the main amplifiers. It's common, but people don't complain about it.
 
Jun 8, 2021 at 5:34 PM Post #305 of 310

cappuchino

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Try running them with a balanced cable and a powerful amp with balanced output. Your mind will be blown. :)
Unfortunately, I still haven't integrated balanced in my system...


On a different note, here's the custom cable I ordered from a local modder I paid 18 USD for (pic from modder).

received_199424498704186.jpeg
 
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Jun 15, 2021 at 11:30 AM Post #309 of 310

chrjohns

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It looks like they are now shipping the international version with both cables. My purchase from Amazon came with China version cable loose inside the shipping box. The international version cable was inside the product box.
 

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