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HiFiMan HE4XX

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by ProtegeManiac, Aug 2, 2017.
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  1. DrivenKeys
    Well, they arrived, and I can say it's the best 50 bux I've spent in a long time. It looks as if these were used just long enough for the right channel to go out, then returned, then stored in a hot warehouse.

    The pads are toast, and why I think the cans were stored hot. Almost all of the glue has disintegrated; I first thought the white powder all over them was mold, but it's just the pads shedding. No worries, the rings can be cleaned and re-used. I may even re-glue these pads, they're still pretty un-used. At the moment, my 30mm Chinese hybrid donuts are held on with painter's tape, and they sound great.

    So, about the dead driver. After some testing and fiddling, I found that all I had to do was gently tighten this screw until sound returned.
    20190907_124139.jpg

    I thought I was going to have to solder, at least! If anybody's fail out of warranty, this is the first thing I'd check. You don't need to pull up the tape to test. Instead, lay the driver face down on a flat surface. With the cable plugged in and music playing, use your finger to gently apply pressure overtop the the wires' entry points. If you hear music, find which wire it is, slowly work the tape up with a tool, then very slowly tighten the screw until you hear music. I backed the screw off until I found the contact point, then tightened only about a 0.5mm turn more. Be sure to firmly press the tape down. These connections look like they could be fragile, and that's why this tape is so strong and firm.

    And I am now a planar convert! The sound lives up to it's name: I feel the music is equally coming from a broad plane covering my ears. I completely understand why planar v dynamic is so polarized. I think it really depends on the shape of your ears and what you love about music. If I had one of my collection, this would likely be it, but time will tell. I'm so glad my m565 came half-broken, the he4xx is exactly what I hoped for from a planar.

    Thanks everybody here for all your input. It looks like I may splurge on some of the pad suggestions here.
     
    displayname, nick n, leeperry and 2 others like this.
  2. HammeredHead
    The price is really appealing. I'm wondering about the size though...they seem gigantic. Is this the case for all planar magnetic headphones?
     
  3. Philimon
    I just tried the Brainwavz hybrid angled pads and they were no good. They made the headphones sound leaner and treble spiked. Someone on the massdrop thread says he has thousands of dollars worth of aftermarket earpads (showed pics) and he prefers the zmf pilot lambskin pads fwir. I would double check and read his posts there and try messaging him before purchasing. I have the zmf ori lambskin and prefer it overall over stock - ive not tried the pilot version. I was going to buy the dekoni hybrids which are on sale at massdrop right now but after taking a second look I don't have high hopes. The other hybrids I've tried I did not prefer either: brainwavz and stock.
     
  4. turbomustang84
    I have come to the conclusion that the HE-4XX are one of those Headphones that I will never sell .
    because with certain groups or songs they just are magical like the new Tool Album and the track chocolate chip Trip specifically
     
    displayname likes this.
  5. DrivenKeys
    I agree. I downloaded the album with Tidal, with limited expectations. The 4xx provided my first listen, and reintroduced the group with revived vitality. I had thought that, after years of obsession, I had finally tired of Tool's library. Fear Inoculum reinvents and enhances so much of the classic Tool sound, and these cans are able to present the emotional detail and complexity without peaks or loss. I'm sure their production improved, but these phones are giving me a whole new impression of their signature. Of course, now I have to reaxamine those cd's.

    I was wrong: this changes everything
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
    displayname and turbomustang84 like this.
  6. DrivenKeys
    Not all. The Monoprice Monolith m565 is just a shade larger than the Sony Mdr-v6. My open-box pair arrived with a dead cup, but I can tell you the good cup sounded excellect, different than these. For 170, you can get a brand new pair of m565 from Amazon. It sounds like this may be what you're looking for.

    I still may eventually buy a pair. As many on the thread have said, the pad must be spaced a bit further from the ear, but it's a simple enough mod. Overall, the build quality us very nice, except the cheesy cord. That should be an immediate upgrade. Not so here, the Hifiman cord is probably the nicest stock cord I've used.
     
  7. bagwell359
    It's all relative. I thought Large Walnut Advents were pretty good in 1977, a few years later, not so much.

    I bought the 4xx about 2..5 years ago. It was punchy and exciting, less boring then the Senn HD-600. But after modifying a set of HE-500's and a nice set of HEX v2's, I haven't listened to the 4xx for about 5 months. If you like it, and can't afford to go up the line, then just be happy, because upgradeitis can wreck your good time.
     
    trellus and turbomustang84 like this.
  8. turbomustang84
    I'm getting the Focal Stellia For a week and if it's as good as I imagine it will ruin my opinion of my all under $600 Headphones or not .

    But I'm excited to hear them anyways.
     
    DrivenKeys likes this.
  9. ngs428
    Funny you mention that song. It was the one I was not liking.. only listened in my truck. Will have to give it a spin with my Tone Board/Atom/HE4XX.
     
  10. turbomustang84
    I have read several complaints about the HE-4XX cable and although I would rather have it terminate in 1/4" I think it's my favorite stock cable.

    I did have to buy a balanced XLR cable but if Hifiman had offered to sell me one exactly like the stock cable then I would have purchased it happily.

    I personally find which cable I need to use for the amp I generally pair it with and never take it off
     
  11. DrivenKeys
    It's so subjective, really depends. Of course, I can make or buy a better cable than this. Compared with all phones I've owned, this one most closely resembles microphone cable. It's flexible, no microphonics, resists tangles, and sounds as if it has a decent amount of copper. It drags my heavy homemade extension cord around the room pretty easily without popping out of the cups.

    I'm sure I'll replace it soon, but ppl should know it's some decent stock kit. Many ppl don't want the rabbit-hole of this hobby, and like good stock stuff. Compared to the wire that came withMonoprice cans, this cable is excellent.
     
    turbomustang84 likes this.
  12. displayname
    I just so happened to be listening to this exact track on my 4XX as I read this. Such a great album and I agree, the 4XX does a great job with this album. I don't think it's a perfect headphone, but these cans, the right amp, and this album all seem to blend very well.
     
    turbomustang84 and ngs428 like this.
  13. ngs428
    I was just listening to that album too... it does mix well with the 4XX
     
    displayname and turbomustang84 like this.
  14. ericj
    I bought the broken HE-4xx on ebay. The one with the whole assembly broken off of the left side.

    The trick is that they attach the height adjuster to the steel and the outer vinyl before they stitch the vinyl.

    To get to the two screw heads you have to pick out some of the stitching at the bottom of the arch and get behind a plastic strip that runs along the inside.

    I put a dab of JB-Weld Plastic Bonder on the plastic where the screws stripped out and reassembled the headband. And clamped it for about an hour.

    In retrospect i should have taken the screws out of the arch assembly, put a dab of plastic bonder on the screws, and screwed them into the adjuster without the headband while waiting for the glue to cure, so i could trim any excess and then reassemble clean.

    JB-Weld says that Plastic Bonder cures in half an hour but it often takes longer and sometimes it just gets gummy and never really hardens, so, it would be smart to be able to re-work it if it doesn't set up correctly.
    But when it does set up correctly, it's a pretty formidable glue for plastic repair. It's a 2-part urethane, not an epoxy.
     
  15. turbomustang84
    Sitting here and killing time watching the movie Training Day for the 100th time and decided to listen to the Hifiman HE-4XX.

    And these are absolutely fantastic cans for movie's.
    Unlike a lot of people I'm not a huge fan of exagerated soundstage but the soundstage on the HE-4XX is perfect for movie's

    I might even dive into The Big Lebowski after this.

    I'm getting the Sundara's for a couple of weeks to try out Tuesday and if they are half as good as the claims ,
    they will likely be my third Hifiman.

    I do really appreciate the Hifiman sound and I've never had an issue with build quality like others have my 400s and
    HE-4XXs are still performing like new without a hitch .
     
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