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Hifiman HE6-SE

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by ufospls2, Aug 10, 2018.
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  1. bagwell359
    I like that Emotiva too, only headache is the ones that die young. Find one that's been cranking a couple of years, and you've got nice sound at bargain bucks and it'll last 20 years longer than those "gem" amps from pre 1980.
    trellus likes this.
  2. bagwell359
    So I'm up to 160 hours on these. And I have a new word - ruthless. I put on the Eagles "Desperado", an overlooked classic among the "theme" LP's of the 70's. Always thought the recording was pretty good for pop, light on the bass impact, but fast and clear. Detail galore, lots of it not pleasant, but its not distortion. For people that know a magnifying glass at x8, well you're now at x12. Some detail I hate (metal dome tweeters, Beyers) but these aren't like that - because its honest here.

    They still have an annoying rise at 4 kHz, but that's not it. Go to music that doesn't feature that and its still ruthless clarity.
    trellus and Slim1970 like this.
  3. bagwell359
    Damn, the new cables have a treble forward emphasis, which is a bad mix with a 4 kHz peak. Back to stock for now, until I mod them up
  4. Oregonian
    20 years longer than this? Been running beautifully for 40.............. Cerwin Vega DX-5 setup for Spec system with JBL Sub.jpg ........
    trellus, kid vic, GU1DO and 1 other person like this.
  5. bagwell359
    Your stack is pretty elite, but cap failures start to rise at 25 years, and at 35 is an avalanche. Time is stalking them. Good luck.
  6. SilverEars
    I've gotten the 6SE from Bagwell, and listen to for a couple of days. The 6SE is a different headphone despite looking like an HE-6. Although it's called HE-6SE, the parts are different upon inspection. The cup housing frame is different from mine, it's not as shiny of of a finish like the original. Once you take off the pads, even the interior looks different, the gluing, the placement of the serial number, the material in the layering of the driver.

    The most obvious one is the headband from the images, it has more clamping force due to those type of headbands. I do like how it sits on the head over the old headband, but more clamping force isn't necessary.

    I had difficulty trying to put in the older pads, the spacing is thinner and it drove me nuts trying to put in the aftermarket pads on. What Bagwell provided with it were Pali pads, and I didn't like the sound of them. I much prefer stock velours that came with original or velpads. So, I chose velour material pads for the comparison.

    In terms of sound differences, yes, the HE6SE has more leveled or lower level treble in the 7-10k+ in which the original is emphasized, but the 6SE seems to have an odd upper-mids sound, it doesn't sound all that defined there. I suspect it's the dip around the presence region and then a quick rise there after. In general, there is less definition and resolution in the mids than the original.

    Bass is also a big difference. The original hits harder and impact with deeper bass for sure. This is characteristically what sets the original HE-6 apart from the other new drivers created by Fang with the HE1000 type driver shaped cups. So, the dynamics isn't as good as the original.

    Imaging has been lost as well, which is the biggest draw of the original HE-6 for me. The decay characteristics of the original HE-6 was well done.

    Personally I think the HE-6SE is closest sounding to the HE-500 than the original HE-6. Also, it has Fang's flavor of being less dynamic like his big cup series he's worked on. So, it does seem to share similarities to his new headphones as well.

    I was hoping that it was just leveling of the highs and that's it, but it seems to be a different driver, not like the original. Fang has created a different headphone that looks like HE-6 and calls it HE-6SE. He marked up the price of them considerably than their worth. It has come down to earth, but I wouldn't go thinking it's identical to the original HE-6.

    I also wonder now, was HE560 being sold on Adorama like the original HE560?
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2019
  7. GU1DO
    Thanks ,, that was interesting .. what cable you used withe the HE6se ?
  8. SilverEars
    Bagwell provided Custom Cans (from UK) one he got recently and I was pretty impressed with it. I never heard such a difference from a cable for a headphone before, especially a planar. Hmmm. It just tells me Hifiman cable is crap, and Fang doesn't get quality parts.

    The cable will change the treble quality, but it will not change the frequency response to change bass dynamics, etc.. I believe.
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2019
    trellus and GU1DO like this.
  9. nahpungnome
    Thanks for the comparison. I've never heard the originals so I really have no basis for comparison, but still interesting that these arent really the same as the original as they've been described as.

    Did you find a difference in pressure from the se and the originals as far as the headband? I toyed with the idea of buying the original or comfort ones to see if they alter the sound at all because when I spread the band out just a little with them on, the bass increased dramatically...the same happened with my old he560v3..
  10. SilverEars
    the pressure is about the same, not really a difference I notice.
  11. GU1DO
    stock is just pure garbage for me , older hifiman had better cables than now, at least my HE400 had mid quality one , not amazing but usable
    my HE1000se/6se/Arya all have came with BS cables
    trellus and omniweltall like this.
  12. nahpungnome
    But they're medical grade!
    Licht and GU1DO like this.
  13. nahpungnome
    Cool thanks, you just saved me $75 on a hunch.
  14. omniweltall
    Can you imagine Hifiman is selling that very same cable for $200? Probably costs Fang $2 to make.
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2019
    GU1DO likes this.
  15. nahpungnome
    Can't wait for the SE version.
    ToddRaymond and omniweltall like this.
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