Next pair of cans

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  1. Monsterzero

    they pre-date this forum so they fly under the radar quite a bit.I picked up my pair for 75.00 :)
    Typically you can find them on that auction site for under 200.00

    We have a handful of members who have discovered these forgotten gems
  2. allhifi
    Excellent !

    Before I go to the link, I presume it predates the also incredible (for time/money) "414's" -I think was the model designation ?

    Thank for the tip/lead ...

  3. Grado Diesel
    I love my HE-400i’s too and am really just looking to expand my headphone palette. I listen mostly to classic rock, jam band, metal, funk, blues and 60s/70’s rebel country. The Grado’s, especially the SR-80i’s really suitted these genres when paired with iPods, but since having switched to the FiiO X3ii and my Schiit amps they don’t pairbwell IMHO at all. With this setup the Grados literally drill my brain out with treble.

    I’m not seeking a boost of sub-bass or anything like that. Just another alternative to rotate with my HIFIMANs that’ll represent the intended sound of the recordings well.
  4. allhifi

    As I just recently re-entered the headphone listening world (from a decade long absence -what was I not thinking ! lol), I quickly zoomed in on the Hifiman 400(S) from about a dozen competitors including Sennheiser (HD-600/650/800) & Grado. From there I selected the 400(i's) as it appeared far more accurate/linear in the critical mid-band -and top-end come to think f it- than the 400S. So, far be it for me to know the current hi-fi world offerings.
    However, my moves (with the 400 i's) will concern itself with an appropriate driving amplifier; Schiit Magni-3 or even Emotiva's A-100 (Flex) amplifier ($220. US$/11-2017) -a 50 W/C main power amp -with volume- that can be "flexed" to a dedicated headphone amp! Built like a tank (and employing my 'fave' bi-polar output transistors as does the Magi-3).

    If these fail to inspire, I'll keep searching. To think that the 400i's will be easily eclipsed anywhere near/at $1K is something I doubt.
    Also (from my re-introduction to HP's), I note the great influence that ear-pads, cable and even positioning of the 'cans' on the o'l noggin can have upon SQ !
    If HP listening becomes even more intriguing (and time consuming) after the purchase of a dedicated amplifier and I find the 400i's no longer cut it (I doubt it) or I'm bowled-over by a stunning model that one (as myself) simply can't live without (a real possibility), I'll report my discoveries -serendipitously of course. Running around with a target on your back is a sure-fire way to get picked off (i.e.purposely searching for something better).

    Long-story-short; consider a superb amplifier and nice cables before venturing into the 400i-beating arena of headphone options.

    This, interestingly and almost laughably (available headphone models ) becomes real short if you value design integrity; more specifically premium, "lockable" head-size adjustment and a solid and comfortable fit.
    I go further and consider the head-band design/material, outer frame construction-composition and general "feel" -hoping for a good one. In other words, thoughtful, professional design; I note the near identical "frame" of the Hifiman series (400/500 & others?) while models from (specifically) Sennheiser use a bewildering array of styles -as if they're searching for a specific "look", as opposed to the simpler goal (and integrity) of a professional design that fulfills acoustic performance criteria.
    (Particularly, has anyone really picked up and examined the Sennheiser HD-800 ? If so, one (I) can only guess as to why they'd chose such a "plasticky" head-frame design ? I suspect it's far more to do with aesthetic appeal than performance oriented -great for the entry-level/ demographic considerations (i.e enhanced sales) but at the high-end ?)

    There may be those who purposefully, continually search (for something "better") as I'll be enjoying my 400i's -banking on every minute savored.

  5. squee116
    If you're looking for pure fidelity, the HD600 isn't a bad way to go. Possibly a cheaper STAX?
  6. Grado Diesel
    Thanks for the good info. You’re right the build quality of HIFIMAN’s is outstanding. Something else I have not thrown in the mix is a DAC. I was for a while considering getting the Schiit Modi Multibit but I have a fear of increasing the highs with one of those in my signal chain.
  7. Grado Diesel
    How do the HD600s compare to the HD650s? Some folks have said the 600s are more “fun”. Are the 650s similar to the HE-400i’s and the 600s not or vice versa? I don’t really want to buy almost the same thing as my HIFIMANs.
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2017
  8. allhifi
    Hmmm. Next time at my favorite (i.e. only -lol so sad) near-by retailer, I shall re-visit the HD-600. And, what's with this new HD-660/660S ?

    What model Sennheiser has the most open, neutral, transparent (i.e.'clean' ) SQ (at HD-800/s or down) ? (Fat, bloaty 'bass' is a definite no-no)

  9. squee116
    Certainly not fun, but flatter.
    Fidelity is just accuracy of reproduction, rather than engagement. I've heard that HD600's described as either detailed or dull, but never fun. The HDH650's are just warmer version of them.
  10. squee116
    Probably the HD600/HD800(s) from Senn.

    There's talk that the HD800 is bright, but I haven't found it uncomfortably so yet, and I'm treble sensitive.

    However, I think the Mr.Speakers Ether and non-SR Stax models were similarly flat, but with better detail retrieval.

    The 660 is the new 650, right? There's reviews out there already comparing the two, but I haven't heard them yet.
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2017
  11. allhifi
    I believe the Schiit "Modi -2 Uber Multi" may be one of he only one available (at reasonable price) that should have a 'forgiving' top-end.
    In fact, have the standard Modi-2 Uber and it sounds great. Ensure you have a quality digital cable and of course interconnects (IC's) and either model will surprise with its refinement -at a remarkable price.

  12. Grado Diesel
    I’ve got to check that out. Is the Modi 2 Uber Multi the one that’s $250? I’ve wondered how that compares in sound to the $150 modi 2 Uber.
  13. squee116
    I don't know that the difference is quantifiable, but MB was a pleasant step up to my ears.
  14. allhifi
    Hmmm. Sexy ? And I thought I had to get out more ! lol

  15. allhifi
    I believe so. The Multi (bit) would likely be more 'polite', smoother and perhaps more dimensional than 1-bit version (using 44XX? DAC chip).

    Understand that your choice of cable is critical to SQ -a lesser cable on the 'Muiti' will be easily outperformed by the stock/cheaper Modi-2 Uber.
    The 1-chip DAC can (and does) sound remarkably life-like, dimensional, transparent and engaging in my set-up.
    An enormous (jaw-dropping) improvement was experienced with the addition of the Audioquest "Vodka" (1.5m) USB digital cable.
    Do not get anything less than the 'Vodka' -from Audioquest.

    Interestingly, I just connected an old CAT 5e cable (from computer/network switch-router) replacing a simple CAT 5 -no-name job; the sound stage immediately collapsed, as did the open clarity, definition/resolution that the CAT-5 (Ethernet) is providing. I still have the CAT 5e connected and I'll listen again tomorrow -giving it some time to "re-settle". From Amazon did I purchase a CAT-7 cable (25-ft.). I have great doubt it would pass CAT-7 spec's, but even so, it has NO dimensionality to it -sounds sterile/hard (in the mid-band). Perhaps it needs some more time -I suspect there must be
    100-200 hours of playing time.
    In any case, these are real and real easy to hear distinctions in cable choice(s) alone. Whatever you decide for a DAC, it would be unwise not to consider appropriate cabling.

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