Hifiman Sundara (HE400i upgraded, around $500)
Nov 24, 2021 at 9:16 PM Post #3,691 of 3,780

pataburd

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The Sundara are pairing well with the Wadia 151PowerDAC mini (Class D, 25wpc/8 ohms), driven directly from the speaker outputs.
Much more authoritative and musical-sounding compared to the SP200.
Excellent separation and imaging, along with improved dynamics and finer sense of detail across the frequency spectrum.
Very comfortable listening level(s) with volume at 33/72.
Using an aftermarket 4x 22AWG Neotech UPOCC solid silver cable with Furutech terminations.
 
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Nov 26, 2021 at 5:26 AM Post #3,692 of 3,780

seanwee

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Does anyone know where you can reliably source new sundara pads? I can only find the old Pali pads
 
Nov 26, 2021 at 5:31 AM Post #3,693 of 3,780

Stevko

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500, 6, HEKse. And "watt".

The 500 needs a min of 2 watts @ 50 ohms. The 6 needs a min 4 watts @ 38 ohms. The HEKse I didn't have at home so the power question I can't answer but doubt it's a 1 watt or less. All 3 are very revealing - very - compared to the Sundara. The 500 can be forgiving. The other two are not. Not enough watts they sound bass shy and flat. Meh audio chain? They'll spit like vipers - and show one what is wrong.

Also the HE6se v1 & v2, HEX v2, Ananda not mentioned are all better although 4 watt min for the 6's. The other need less than 1 watt but it had better be quality.
How many watt do Sundara need?
 
Nov 26, 2021 at 7:01 AM Post #3,694 of 3,780

bagwell359

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Nov 26, 2021 at 8:48 AM Post #3,695 of 3,780

pataburd

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IMHO, 0.75 watt is not enough. At least 1 watt. 2 watts are probably better, based on my experiences.
So far, I have driven the Sundara with the Dragonfly Cobalt, the DF Black v1.5, the S.M.S.L. SP200 and the Wadia 151 PowerDAC mini [an integrated amp with onboard DAC, using an adapter directly from the speaker outputs].
The Cobalt provides probably less than 1 watt and the Sundara sound detailed, but thin, stymied and edgy (I really don't care for the Cobalt anyway--preferring the DF Black v1.5 or the DF Red with the Sundara); the SP200 probably provides more than 1 watt and the Sundara sound a little more robust and filled out, especially in the bass frequencies, but still a bit compressed.
My estimate is that the Wadia 151 provides the Sundara with about 6 watts. With the volume at 32 (on a 72-step scale) the Sundara easily sound their best from the Wadia: authoritative, dynamic, finely detailed, balanced and extended (exposing some of the Sundara's limitations rendering sub-bass): like night-and-day compared to the Cobalt. Significantly better compared to the SP200.
With hard-to-drive headphones (e.g., HifiMAN HE-6, HEDDphone, etc.) integrated/power amps do a great job and can be much more affordable than most "premium" dedicated headphone amplifiers. Anecdotally, when I owned the HEDDphone, I used the Jeff Rowland Model 2 power amp with Endler attenuators and the performance (for my ears--and wallet) was unrivaled.
Disclaimer: YMMV.

Postscript: The 100wpc Wyred4Sound mINT and 60wpc bel canto e.One C5i are on deck. : )
 
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Nov 26, 2021 at 9:47 AM Post #3,696 of 3,780

pataburd

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Current Sundara set-up:
Sundara
4-cores 22AWG Neotech UPOCC solid silver cable
HeadphoneLounge 4-pin XLR-to-speaker bananas adapter
Wadia 151PowerDAC mini
Ultra-Fi USB (B) cable
USB Disruptor (on order)
Lenovo G50

(MAC PC power cord, PowerVar AC conditioner; Infinity Audio shorting plugs; Alen Maher Infinity RFI treatment, Shakti Stone, RDC Cones and cups) IMG_20211126_093316761.jpg

Banana end of 4-pin XLR-to-bananas adapter:
IMG_20211126_093326117.jpg

4-pin XLR end of 4-pin XLR-to-bananas adapter:
IMG_20211126_093410362.jpg
 
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Nov 29, 2021 at 3:05 AM Post #3,697 of 3,780

Illbetheone

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How do these compare to a DT177x Go?
 
Nov 30, 2021 at 10:14 AM Post #3,700 of 3,780

pataburd

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Do you have an extra, working cable?
You can check to see if the problem is at the plug end of the cable or if it's the jack inside the headphone. (Hopefully not the latter case.)
The stock cable is of poor quality; I switched to an aftermarket cable immediately after getting the Sundara.
 
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Nov 30, 2021 at 3:54 PM Post #3,701 of 3,780

Tripokaridos

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Do you have an extra, working cable?
You can check to see if the problem is at the plug end of the cable or if it's the jack inside the headphone. (Hopefully not the latter case.)
The stock cable is of poor quality; I switched to an aftermarket cable immediately after getting the Sundara.
I use a meze one that is very long and works great. So something is going wrong with the cable.
 
Nov 30, 2021 at 7:29 PM Post #3,702 of 3,780

pataburd

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Do you notice any improvement(s) in sound with the Meze cable?

One of the cables I am using is an 8-cores with 4x 28AWG Neotech UPOCC solid silver wire + 4x 24AWG Neotech UPOCC solid copper wire, Neutrik terminations and Mundorf Supreme solder.

IMG_20200721_090942693.jpgIMG_20200721_090947170.jpgIMG_20200721_091010527_HDR.jpg
 
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Dec 1, 2021 at 4:49 PM Post #3,703 of 3,780

Tripokaridos

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Do you notice any improvement(s) in sound with the Meze cable?

One of the cables I am using is an 8-cores with 4x 28AWG Neotech UPOCC solid silver wire + 4x 24AWG Neotech UPOCC solid copper wire, Neutrik terminations and Mundorf Supreme solder.

Honestly even that i bealive cables doesnt make big difference , strangely the meze cable sounds worst something with the soundstage beeing smaller , i know its hard to believe but i can hear it . For now i use that meze .
I am with Hifiman support to find a solution , luckily i have 3 years warranty.
If not i will buy a Forza audioworks cable that i use on my hd6 series and they work great.
 
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Dec 1, 2021 at 6:08 PM Post #3,704 of 3,780

pataburd

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HifiMAN, I believe, in addition to changing the earpads with the Sundara 2020/1, also went to an OCC instead of an OFC cable. Meze's cable may be regular OFC. When I had the Empyrean, I didn't care for the stock cable that came with them.

In all fairness, too, I should get out the Sundara's stock cable and do some serious a/b-ing with the aftermarket cables I have on hand:

(i) 4x 22AWG Neotech UPOCC solid core copper,
(ii) 4x 28AWG Neotech UPOCC solid core silver + 4x 24AWG Neotech UPOCC solid core copper,
(iii) 4x 22AWG Neotech UPOCC solid core silver.

(iii) is definitely my favorite. The Sundara sound their best with this cable (which is also the most expensive to make).
 
Dec 1, 2021 at 6:19 PM Post #3,705 of 3,780

Tripokaridos

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HifiMAN, I believe, in addition to changing the earpads with the Sundara 2020/1, also went to an OCC instead of an OFC cable. Meze's cable may be regular OFC. When I had the Empyrean, I didn't care for the stock cable that came with them.

In all fairness, too, I should get out the Sundara's stock cable and do some serious a/b-ing with the aftermarket cables I have on hand:

(i) 4x 22AWG Neotech UPOCC solid core copper,
(ii) 4x 28AWG Neotech UPOCC solid core silver + 4x 24AWG Neotech UPOCC solid core copper,
(iii) 4x 22AWG Neotech UPOCC solid core silver.

(iii) is definitely my favorite. The Sundara sound their best with this cable (which is also the most expensive to make).
I have A Denon 5200 on my country house i dont remember if they are 2.5 or 3.5 i will try those if they work
 

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