Official Unofficial 8XX Discussion Thread - UPDATE SENNHEISER HAS BEEN SOLD!!! GT(heck)IH
Sep 10, 2022 at 4:37 PM Post #1,351 of 1,371

Menkau-ra

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I got mine for $745 new, did tape mod and put Dekoni pads on. Very happy. Owned 800s 2 x prior.
To me Dekoni pads changed the sound too much and I didn’t like it.
 
Sep 10, 2022 at 7:04 PM Post #1,352 of 1,371

Maxx134

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It is quite possible I can revert this into an actual 800S.
It's a bit more than just removal of that grill damping, but looks very possible since I been working on these drivers so long.

Looks like tha last drop price permanently devalued the headphones to below $800, even though it still selling higher on amazon, so yes it can be a deal..

I think I will get one, not only to measure, but to transform it to an 800S and measure, then update it to my 800SM which has true increases over an 800S, but I really don't like that dark blue ring which kills the lettering. Ugg.
 
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Sep 11, 2022 at 5:58 AM Post #1,353 of 1,371

Ichos

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This is not an HD800S nor want to be one.
This is the HD8XX, a different tuned headphone not released to replace the HD800S nor can't be one by simply removing the stickers.
Whether someone likes the stock tuning or want to use some EQ this is up to personal preferences.
I like it as it is.
 
Sep 11, 2022 at 7:14 AM Post #1,354 of 1,371

gikigill

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This is not an HD800S nor want to be one.
This is the HD8XX, a different tuned headphone not released to replace the HD800S nor can't be one by simply removing the stickers.
Whether someone likes the stock tuning or want to use some EQ this is up to personal preferences.
I like it as it is.

Yup as and HD800 owner, I prefer the HD8XX as it is and prefer it stands on its own merits.
 
Sep 11, 2022 at 7:29 AM Post #1,355 of 1,371

Strat1117

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It is quite possible I can revert this into an actual 800S.
It's a bit more than just removal of that grill damping, but looks very possible since I been working on these drivers so long.

Looks like tha last drop price permanently devalued the headphones to below $800, even though it still selling higher on amazon, so yes it can be a deal..

I think I will get one, not only to measure, but to transform it to an 800S and measure, then update it to my 800SM which has true increases over an 800S, but I really don't like that dark blue ring which kills the lettering. Ugg.
For those of us who are curious, but not educated, where do we find the Playskool level version of instructions for these mods and maybe a one line description of their intent?
 
Sep 11, 2022 at 8:54 PM Post #1,356 of 1,371

Evshrug

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I was under the assumption that the HDXX had more bass than the HD800S, but after listening to this video, it seems opposite. You can hear a touch more subbass on the 800S.
I will have to verify this, but you can hear for yourself:

I feel like this just goes to show, youtube playback demos (played back on... what?) are misleading. Depending on the way we interpret graphs, our hearing physiology and psychoacoustics, and where we compare volume, we may expect one thing from reading graphs but ALWAYS hear something different than playback demos and what the graphs show. Dan himself at 2:33 says that the HD 8XX is warmer.

First, youtube demos. The most obvious inaccuracies from this method of evaluating headphones comes from what playback speakers you are using (HD 6XX? In Ears? Smartphone speakers??) will add their own coloration to the playback, as will Youtube's AAC compression. Your playback system isn't perfect, and the DAC filtering, analog ringing, resonance, attack, and decay of your playback system will mask these same traits in the headphone recording being played back. Less obvious is the effect of hearing sound after it has been filtered through ears... twice! The shape of our outer ears have different timings of reflecting frequencies towards our ear canals, the ear canals themselves and cochlea have a resonance frequency of their own, and the folds and bends of our entire ear system occlude and shape the sounds we hear, and this also applies to the 70% generic (or artistic) design of the dummy head with microphones inserted. A viewer may think that they are just comparing the difference scientifically by comparing the difference in the two recordings, but these differences are distorted in contrast to listening in person, and psychologically we can't divorce ourselves from subjectively judging "this is better/this is worse" at the same time we hear differences in amplitude.

Second, as alluded to already, the recording process is impossible to have perfect as well. In my time doing measurements for Dekoni a few years back, it was easy to see how just a milimeter's shift of where the headphones were seated on a microphone head could significantly alter the resultant frequency and impulse response... and this also goes for the clamping force, and to some extent the playback volume as well. Some reviewers use this fact to doctor the "objective" results as well: cherry picking positions, recording at unreasonable and unlistenable results and presenting them as evidence of flaws, or even using a rubber band around the earcups and head to increase clamp (and no elastic can maintain consistent force over time and use). Some professional microphone dummy heads include a frequency response from the manufacturer to cancel out that artifact, but time domain artifacts remain, and it's difficult to know if the demonstrator has applied a parametric EQ. But, even if the graphing results are smoothed by taking an average of multiple positions, the accuracy is impacted by the quality of human head emulation (oral and nasal cavities, density of tissue representing skin, cartilage, and bone, shape of outer ear and inner ear bends, diameter of ear canal, etc) and by hearing it through the dummy's ears before again being filtered through your own ears, obviously the audience is only able to hear music playback as recorded with the headphone in one seating position. There are other variables at play that are impossible to control for: the playback file quality, playback software, Digital to Analog Conversion, amplifier, microphone, Analog to Digital Conversion, and recording software are out of the hands of the audience, as well as the demonstrator is unable to control what operating system, playback software (browser or app version of YouTube?), DAC, Amp, or headphones/speakers the audience uses.

With all this said, I am not condemning Dan here, or people who have used youtube demos without realizing how they create bias in evaluation. To Dan's credit, he is using what he believes to be a more objective method of presenting impressions, and with the HD 8XX in particular it is difficult to audition (because it isn't sold in any brick & mortar stores, as a Drop.com exclusive). I believe the community is wary of untrustworthy and hyperbolic reviewers, and I assume Dan has positive intentions while knowing there is a hungry audience. Buying measurement gear is also an expensive investment! After viewing almost all of Dan's video (7 minutes left!) I actually agree with his subjective descriptions of sound in this video. Also, I do not know everything, just enough to get into trouble. The title is a bit of clickbait though, playing on the divided reception and cancel culture to get attention :sweat_smile:

Maxx, another possible reason Dan may be saying the HD 8xx is warmer than the HD 800S could be because the midbass is stronger and the mids and particularly the upper mids are darker than the HD 800S, though the treble mostly matches up. Female voices and harmonicas are often where I find myself setting the upper bounds of my listening volume, and the bass is filled in nicely without masking the highs much. I thought it was really interesting (and cool) that Dan flashed his HD 650 as well (which I agree is overall warmer than the other two), because that is a famously easy to listen to headphone that is moderately warm and darker in the treble, but I actually find the HD 8xx even easier to listen to because I find the HD 650 to have a bit more upper mids and energy in female vocals. Personally... I no longer have a favorite sound signature. Sometimes I like a more aggressive sound when I want to listen to exciting content or I want high impact when I only have a short listening session available, sometimes I want something hyper "realistic" to transport me to another environment (ironically enough, I particularly like "realistic" headphones while playing fantasy games! More immersion :wink: ), and other times I want a smooth audio cocktail that I can enjoy on a marathon session for hours and hours. I liked the HD 8XX after review that I got one for myself for that latter reason, with the added bonus that it has good soundstage and some excitement from the quick attack.
 
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Sep 11, 2022 at 8:58 PM Post #1,357 of 1,371

Evshrug

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I think I will get one, not only to measure, but to transform it to an 800S and measure, then update it to my 800SM which has true increases over an 800S, but I really don't like that dark blue ring which kills the lettering. Ugg.
I was relieved the midnight blue was darker and more subtle than I was expecting, but since I have an HD 800, HD 820, and an HD 8xx, I'm thinking I might go to Colorware or something to get it personalized :D I loved the contrast of my white and black (with green stitching) AKG Q701, I think a black with green accents HD 8XX would be fun!
 
Sep 11, 2022 at 9:21 PM Post #1,358 of 1,371

Maxx134

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For those of us who are curious, but not educated, where do we find the Playskool level version of instructions for these mods and maybe a one line description of their intent?
Sorry I don't know about those videos or instructions people have been doing to change their 8XX. I only mentioned I like to look into it myself, because I saw the video posted about a page back or so.

I was relieved the midnight blue was darker and more subtle than I was expecting, but since I have an HD 800, HD 820, and an HD 8xx, I'm thinking I might go to Colorware or something to get it personalized :D I loved the contrast of my white and black (with green stitching) AKG Q701, I think a black with green accents HD 8XX would be fun!
Wow nice collection. I have finally settled on a paint procedure myself to spice up that flat black base coat on them black versions.

Yeah I like to clarify that I am curious about the 8XX version to see how it is, and its my hobby to tinker so I will see for myself how it measures up.
Those that like this 8XX variety, I'm all for it (variety). More versions the better, lol.

One thing I have noticed is that these later models have a different thicker plastic material but is same weight. I have noticed this on a HD800S.
20220901_112702.jpg
So I am assuming all latter models done same.
 
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Sep 11, 2022 at 9:44 PM Post #1,359 of 1,371

Evshrug

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It is nice to have a collection: it took many years to happen, haha, and I sadly had to let a few headphones go along the way (such as the Q701). The HD 800 series have been hard to let go of! There is a Pittsburgh meet happening on Oct 22; I'm bringing the HD 8XX because other people expressed curiosity.

That's interesting about the HD 800S yolks design over time... the black one looks like it's using some of the hexagonal latticework so often seen in 3D printed designs to help strengthen without adding weight. It's interesting that the black one's earcup mounting tab appears to be shorter than the "naked resin" one on the right. I haven't popped off the cover on my HD 8XX to see what it looks like inside; when do you think your "new" HD 800S with the hex pattern was manufactured?
 
Sep 11, 2022 at 10:50 PM Post #1,360 of 1,371

Maxx134

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I'm bringing the HD 8XX because other people expressed curiosity
Have you noted any longer break in period with 8XX,?

when do you think your "new" HD 800S with the hex pattern was manufactured?
The hex pattern version was a latest/ newer version. I did notice older, early model 800S does not have proper lettering on headband, and so actually may have the older design body.
 
Sep 12, 2022 at 2:13 AM Post #1,361 of 1,371

Evshrug

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Have you noted any longer break in period with 8XX,?


The hex pattern version was a latest/ newer version. I did notice older, early model 800S does not have proper lettering on headband, and so actually may have the older design body.
Hard to say if it was longer relative to my HD 800... I got that while I was a poor young adult in my 20's, having to save up for 6 months in order to buy a used one in 2016, while I got my HD 8XX new (and the production sample I reviewed was also very fresh... Drop sent it to me before I mailed it on to DMS). The HD 8XX clicked with me within the first day's session and didn't seem to change drastically; the biggest "burn in" change I've experienced with a headphone was my Q701 getting massively bassier and boomier over time, to the point where even if I swapped pads with the K712 Pro I got to replace it with, the Q701 (with either set of pads) had more bass and more bass ringing (extended decay) than the crisper K712 Pro. The fidelity took a hit due to muddiness, but the rumbling of thunder was super cool and satisfying. I used that Q701 most nights for hours and hours while playing sweaty competitive videogames (and doing the Destiny raids) back in 2009-2012, and I've been much less hard on my headphones since then XD
 
Sep 12, 2022 at 2:13 AM Post #1,362 of 1,371

Ichos

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I feel like this just goes to show, youtube playback demos (played back on... what?) are misleading. Depending on the way we interpret graphs, our hearing physiology and psychoacoustics, and where we compare volume, we may expect one thing from reading graphs but ALWAYS hear something different than playback demos and what the graphs show. Dan himself at 2:33 says that the HD 8XX is warmer.

First, youtube demos. The most obvious inaccuracies from this method of evaluating headphones comes from what playback speakers you are using (HD 6XX? In Ears? Smartphone speakers??) will add their own coloration to the playback, as will Youtube's AAC compression. Your playback system isn't perfect, and the DAC filtering, analog ringing, resonance, attack, and decay of your playback system will mask these same traits in the headphone recording being played back. Less obvious is the effect of hearing sound after it has been filtered through ears... twice! The shape of our outer ears have different timings of reflecting frequencies towards our ear canals, the ear canals themselves and cochlea have a resonance frequency of their own, and the folds and bends of our entire ear system occlude and shape the sounds we hear, and this also applies to the 70% generic (or artistic) design of the dummy head with microphones inserted. A viewer may think that they are just comparing the difference scientifically by comparing the difference in the two recordings, but these differences are distorted in contrast to listening in person, and psychologically we can't divorce ourselves from subjectively judging "this is better/this is worse" at the same time we hear differences in amplitude.

Second, as alluded to already, the recording process is impossible to have perfect as well. In my time doing measurements for Dekoni a few years back, it was easy to see how just a milimeter's shift of where the headphones were seated on a microphone head could significantly alter the resultant frequency and impulse response... and this also goes for the clamping force, and to some extent the playback volume as well. Some reviewers use this fact to doctor the "objective" results as well: cherry picking positions, recording at unreasonable and unlistenable results and presenting them as evidence of flaws, or even using a rubber band around the earcups and head to increase clamp (and no elastic can maintain consistent force over time and use). Some professional microphone dummy heads include a frequency response from the manufacturer to cancel out that artifact, but time domain artifacts remain, and it's difficult to know if the demonstrator has applied a parametric EQ. But, even if the graphing results are smoothed by taking an average of multiple positions, the accuracy is impacted by the quality of human head emulation (oral and nasal cavities, density of tissue representing skin, cartilage, and bone, shape of outer ear and inner ear bends, diameter of ear canal, etc) and by hearing it through the dummy's ears before again being filtered through your own ears, obviously the audience is only able to hear music playback as recorded with the headphone in one seating position. There are other variables at play that are impossible to control for: the playback file quality, playback software, Digital to Analog Conversion, amplifier, microphone, Analog to Digital Conversion, and recording software are out of the hands of the audience, as well as the demonstrator is unable to control what operating system, playback software (browser or app version of YouTube?), DAC, Amp, or headphones/speakers the audience uses.

With all this said, I am not condemning Dan here, or people who have used youtube demos without realizing how they create bias in evaluation. To Dan's credit, he is using what he believes to be a more objective method of presenting impressions, and with the HD 8XX in particular it is difficult to audition (because it isn't sold in any brick & mortar stores, as a Drop.com exclusive). I believe the community is wary of untrustworthy and hyperbolic reviewers, and I assume Dan has positive intentions while knowing there is a hungry audience. Buying measurement gear is also an expensive investment! After viewing almost all of Dan's video (7 minutes left!) I actually agree with his subjective descriptions of sound in this video. Also, I do not know everything, just enough to get into trouble. The title is a bit of clickbait though, playing on the divided reception and cancel culture to get attention :sweat_smile:

Maxx, another possible reason Dan may be saying the HD 8xx is warmer than the HD 800S could be because the midbass is stronger and the mids and particularly the upper mids are darker than the HD 800S, though the treble mostly matches up. Female voices and harmonicas are often where I find myself setting the upper bounds of my listening volume, and the bass is filled in nicely without masking the highs much. I thought it was really interesting (and cool) that Dan flashed his HD 650 as well (which I agree is overall warmer than the other two), because that is a famously easy to listen to headphone that is moderately warm and darker in the treble, but I actually find the HD 8xx even easier to listen to because I find the HD 650 to have a bit more upper mids and energy in female vocals. Personally... I no longer have a favorite sound signature. Sometimes I like a more aggressive sound when I want to listen to exciting content or I want high impact when I only have a short listening session available, sometimes I want something hyper "realistic" to transport me to another environment (ironically enough, I particularly like "realistic" headphones while playing fantasy games! More immersion :wink: ), and other times I want a smooth audio cocktail that I can enjoy on a marathon session for hours and hours. I liked the HD 8XX after review that I got one for myself for that latter reason, with the added bonus that it has good soundstage and some excitement from the quick attack.
Excellent, very well said.

BTW @Evshrug how is it that you are not a member of any trade still?
You should be!
 
Sep 12, 2022 at 2:19 AM Post #1,363 of 1,371

Evshrug

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Excellent, very well said.

BTW @Evshrug how is it that you are not a member of any trade still?
You should be!
Thank you sir!
I've fallen on kind of hard economic times, but I set aside some savings, and I'm typing here to psych myself up to review the Apos Caspian (full-size dynamic headphone). I feel I'm rusty, you see, and I want to describe it justly. Not being a member of the trade does bring the opportunity to finally share thoughts about many brands and get back into reviewing! Hopefully my efforts will encourage more readers and more manufacturers to reach out to me to review stuff again :)
 
Sep 12, 2022 at 4:41 PM Post #1,365 of 1,371

Evshrug

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By the way, here is a tweet showing something I’ve been trying to explain for a long time: why do we always hear something different from what is illustrated on a frequency response measurement graph?
https://twitter.com/seanolive/status/1568725048965595138?s=21&t=41TwnBCmYqLvQ33lRVDzyA

Dr. Sean Olive is a Senior Fellow at the Harmon group. These graphs show just how much a person’s head and ear shape influences frequency response, and goes a long way to explain why people experience headphones differently.
 
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