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HiFiMan HE4XX

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by ProtegeManiac, Aug 2, 2017.
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  1. bagwell359
    ^ if you want to add bass from about 80 Hz down w/o an EQ, here is one way:

    plastic tube, get it near the right diam, slice up one end so it fits in the other end - that's been done here before. I added felt to mine. Then fit it in the felt pads.

    DSCN1954.JPG
     
    smallcaps likes this.
  2. smallcaps
    TQNSBns.jpg

    I was skeptical that much could be improved in terms of sound and comfort when spending 50% more over the MSRP by going the ZMF pads route. Considering how decent the price/performance measures for the HE4XX's sound at stock, there isn't much more to be done without putting oneself into a higher tier headphone. Rarely worth it, imho. I was pleasantly swayed from that thought after I added the ZMF Auteur leather pads to them. I mistakenly ordered them over the Ori pads that are popularly applied by Hifiman owners as aftermarket pads, but after a short email exchange with Zack from ZMF, I kept the order as I was curious if they would display any sonic changes similar to when pad swapping the Ikon's stock pads with the Auteur ones.

    While the Focus Pads A are already better in every way to the stock pads on the HE400i (only other Hifiman's I've heard), the Auteur pads open up the soundstage noticeably, without any detriment to the frequency range as far as I could hear. While the bass amount was a tiny bit more abundant, the extension seems to have deepened, and I think I'm just touching a bit more sub-bass listening to CMYK by James Blake. Max Richter's Vivaldi Recomposed revealed an improved instrument positioning when compared to the stock pads. The ear openings on the Auteur pads are a lot wider and oval shaped, when compared to the Focus pads so curious if these have anything to do with it. I don't have the gear to provide an objective measurement so all these impressions are obviously very subjective. While I don't think that spending so much on upgraded pads over the already well-performing stock pads are worth it, they are certainly an improvement to my ears if money was no object. Still, maybe going for a better cable (the stock HE4XX cable is usable but begs to the upgraded) is money better spent.

    The improvement that was much more noticeable tho was in the comfort category. Wow these are luxurious. These pads, in combination with the ZMF Pilot pad, makes the HE4XX cradle my head like a mother's bosom. When my wife put them on (most of her listening is done with modded Sennheiser HD580's) she immediately noticed the comfort change ("Not better, just different"). If you are looking for headphones that fade away, this configuration does not facilitate that. However if you are looking to feel a physical connection with the music apparatus, this does the trick. As much as I love listening to music, the experience of equipping oneself with such a great piece of gear sometimes adds to the overall listening experience. These headphones, when mated with the full suite of ZMF pads, just melt onto my head like a liquid gold crown, and there is no way I'm going back to stock after the upgrade.

    Worth spending the money on? Probably not. But I don't regret the upgrade one bit, now that I've had some extended listening time. The HE4XX's are a great value, and while I would always go for the HD6XX for a first 'audiophile' level headphone due to their durability, comfort, tool-less field serviceability, and scaling improvement as one upgrades other gear (amps, dacs, sources, etc.), the HE4XX's deserves to be shortlisted on the virtue of price/performance alone, before making any decision to jump deeper into the hobby.
     
    rafaelo and displayname like this.
  3. riffrafff
    Which leather pads did you get? Lambskin or perforated lambskin?
     
    smallcaps likes this.
  4. smallcaps
    Lambskin for both. Non-perforated.
     
    riffrafff likes this.
  5. MF Kitten
    I wish more people owned measurement rigs (the MiniDSP EARS is great for this), because I really want to see more info on what different pads do to different headphones.

    I'm going to try out Cascadia's Impact pads on my 4XX's, as they seem to eat up the 3-4K range and the upper mids very nicely, and they make a good seal to your head. My personsl pet peeve with many pads are harsh inner reflections. Pleather and leather both do that. My ideal pads might actually be hybrid pads that are all pleather, but velour on the inside only. I just have a gut feeling.
     
    bobbooo likes this.
  6. Electrolite
    Please anyone here owns the 400i or 400s or 4xx to compare with the HD 58X? I'm not sure which one I should buy
     
  7. letlive
    I have the HE4XX and I prefer the HD 58X. The HD 58X has less treble, but it sounds more musically and has the cleaner/better midrange. Bass is similar. I wouldn't say that the planar bass of the HE4XX is much better.
     
    omniweltall likes this.
  8. Bhargu
    Hi, I just received the package. Nearly a month after dispatch (26 days?). The outer brown carton was crumpled at the corners, but inner headphone box was in pristine condition. The cans also came in perfect condition, ie. no loose/detached cans or driver noise/rattling/disconnection. I don't have an amp at hand, but my office has an SPL meter. I measured my laptop peak output (playing music, with replaygain enabled) was at around 80-90 dB. With pink noise, that was 80dB at 60% volume. Even my mobile (Oneplus 3) provides good enough volume to reach listening levels at around 80% volume. So, possible to use without an amp in an emergency. I will check with amps when I get home.

    Now, dimensions and weight:
    35cm x 28cm x 18cm - 1420gm
    for those in USA, 14'' x 11'' x 7'' - 3.13 lbs.

    I hope this is useful. I tried to get this data directly from Massdrop for HD58X, but they couldn't (or didn't) provide it. I would like to point out that this the volumetric weight is nearly 8 lbs. That will affect the shipping cost.
     
    Sonnycz likes this.
  9. Sonnycz
    Is this the original box+stuff in it only ? Without the outer carton etc.? Because this looks almost exactly like dimensions of my package which include the carton :floatsmile:!
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2018
  10. Bhargu
    This is the weight and dimensions of the shipping carton. The original MD x Hifiman product box is smaller in lenght and width. Height is the almost the same. Freight forwarding companies use this dimension for their calculations. If you are planning for repackaging, I could provide the dimensions of the product box later, but in that case the freight forwarder will use the dimensions after repackaging, which is going to be completely different.
     
  11. headhuan
    Right, the price is appealing... for those aiming at the first planar looks like a very good chance. the drop is for 500, huge number but the price is tempting. I'll follow carefully.
    I guess a quiet of people are accustom to buying DVD or BD and then play them on TV. Well, don’t you curious how to create a disc yourself? I once tried to convert MP4 to DVD, I think it is fun and interesting.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2018
  12. Sonnycz
    Bhargu: The original product box dimensions was what I've been trying to achieve all along :grin:. Yes I was thinking about repacking but it seems It's impossible to reduce the weight by 300g anyway, right :cry:? Pity, guess I dont get to save the 9$ on shipping xD. Nevermind ! Thanks for the effort man :wink:.
     
  13. bagwell359
    Haven't heard the 58X, but comparing the HD-600 and HE-4XX there is a lot to like for both. The 600 was my ref for a couple of years. It's got a flatter response, it's got less bass impact, but what it has is very quick and well damped. It's clean, it sounds slightly tipped up overall. The HE-4XX has more bass, and more under 60 Hz, but has nothing notable under 30. There is a slight depression in the upper mids/low treble. There is a treble peak, but its not a real bother.

    All I can say is the HE-4XX makes me get lost in the music more deeply, and female vocals are outstanding.
     
    displayname, trellus and Sonnycz like this.
  14. dgindlespergerd
    "bagwell359
    4xx are fine headphones, given the price it's a B++/A"

    I would say there more than just fine if you look at the cost to value ratio as you say B++/A.
    For me with the free shipping it is really hard to be. I have had mine for 8 months and they are my "go to" for running around.

    I go shopping everyday Saturday morning for the family so I can beat the masses and at the store I am "the headphone guy" according to the employees because i wear the He-4xx. It is funny and nice because I get questions about why I wear the "big ones" and what is the difference in types.
     
    Sonnycz and riffrafff like this.
  15. bagwell359
    Yeah I was doing that English understatement of something I really like thing. I also use them as portables. Great product.
     
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