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Re-cable HD800 or Beyerdynamic T1 to Balanced from the stock cable

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by yogui, May 26, 2011.
  1. Yogui
    I'm about to cut an HD800 (T1 in the future) stock cable to make it Balanced and wanted to ear (Facts not opinions) if what I'm planning to do will be worth it [​IMG] or it will ruin my cable [​IMG]
    The Steps:
    A) Cut the stock cable at about 1 meter from the 6.35 TRS plug.
                    That should leave me as well  with a 2 meters long cable ending on the Headphones
    B) Solder 2 XLRs Female on the 6.35 TRS plug side.
                    That will make the adapter (a 1 meter long one! [​IMG])
    C) Solder 2 XLRs Male on the Headphone side
                    That will make a 2 meters long Balanced cable
    The Questions:
    1) Do you know for a fact what wires colors and their polarity (to solder the XLRs in to) I'm going to find inside the HD800 (or T1) stock cable.
    1.1 If there are only 3 as in the TRS plug, well then the stock cable is useless for balanced
    1.2 If there are 4, they go 2 and 2 to each XLR signals.
                    What about Ground?
                    Will that be worth it only for Fully Balanced Amps, where the signals are in opposed phase and picked up noise is canceled?
    1.3 If there are 6, they go 3 and 3 to each XLR signals.
    2) Do the wires, in the stock cable, have a surface treatment (e.g. Teflon) that requires extra treatment for soldering?
    My Opinions and Notes:
    I expect to find in the:
                    HD800 = 4 wires (Question 1.2)
                    T1 = 6 wires (Question 1.3)
    I'm using:
                    Furutech FP-702F Female
                    Furutech FP-701M Male
                    Wired 4 Sound DAC-2 (Balanced)
                    Woo WA22 (Balanced)
    I couldn't find a similar post, if you know it please post link
    Thanks for reading! [​IMG]
  2. John Willett
    Obviously you will, in effect, destroy the cable and would have to buy a replacement should you want to sell the HD 800s at a later date.
    The stock cable on the HD 800 is a very high quality one and is fully balanced other than the jack plug.
    It's very easy to find out what is what when you have cut the cable.  Just check it with a cable tester and see what colour is connected where.
    The jack plug tip is left +ve, ring is right +ve and the others will be -ve.
    Though, personally, I would fit a 5-pin XLR rather than two 3-pin ones.
  3. Yogui
    Thanks for your reply John! [​IMG]
    OK, so what I want to do will work.
    Yes, I'll sacrifice the HD800 stock cable but to have a high quality balanced cable and adapter back to TRS that I could sell with the Headphone anyway or buy a stock replacement cable for $300 (got quote), which is less that buying a Balanced cable of similar quality ~$400.
    For the next couple of years I don't see myself selling the HD800 (even if a go towards Stax Ouch! $$$) so is a ~$400 saving and on top of that I really like the HD800 stock cable.
    Yes I would like to use a 5-pin XLR instead, but some amps don't have them (WA22 has it) so I'll stick with the default 2 x XLR3 with no adapters at all.
    Could this re-cabling also be done with the Beyerdynamic T1?
    Would the HD800 and the T1 have 4 or 6 wires total? (yes, you said "fully balanced" but I like to read the number 6  [​IMG])
    If they are 4 would the missing Ground be a Sound Quality issue?
    Regards, Alberto
  4. Yogui
    All done!
    Thanks for the feedback John, it was very simple as you said.
    Hardest thing was to work with the fabric on the HD800 stock cable.
    Not the finest job, but I had fun.
    XLRs are Furutech 701's @ $18 each
    Read some comments below pictures.
    No turning back now!
    Carpenters say "measure twice cut once"
    I've also though about it a 1000 times LOL!
    Separating Wires
    Could not get nicer ones...
    Soldering, needs some patience
    Finishing of, no shortcircuits left behing, multitester check.
    Also got an adapter back to 1/4"

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