Sennheiser HD650 & Massdrop HD6XX Impressions Thread
Sep 30, 2015 at 9:30 AM Post #29,416 of 44,528

ns6490

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  I get the sense of claustrophobia with them myself though not from the soundstage, more like it's a sound pressure issue, I found the HD 600(one of the most fatiguing headphones I've owned) much worse in this aspect. There are people who have issues with fatigue on the HD 650, I see it mentioned from time to time. You may be better off with something else if you get fatigue like that. Do you have anything else on the warmer and darker side like the HD 650? I actually had the same problem with the treble being shrill at times. The sound pressure issue was the bigger issue, leaner systems helped but never fixed the issue this led me to conclude the bass was the culprit. Both the HD 600 and HD 650 made my ears act really oddly and overly sensitive for months and I don't even listen that loud and only recently have my ears settled down.

 
All of this sounds kind of familiar. I also listen at low volumes and experience shrillness and fatigue. 
 
Interesting that it's a sound pressure generated fatigue for you. The next time I get fatigue, I'll try to see if I'm having the same experience. HD650s are the darkest headphones I have, but my brighter cans don't seem to cause this kind of sensitivity to treble or fatigue at all. 
 
Sep 30, 2015 at 9:46 AM Post #29,417 of 44,528

CanadianMaestro

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All of this sounds kind of familiar. I also listen at low volumes and experience shrillness and fatigue. 
 
Interesting that it's a sound pressure generated fatigue for you. The next time I get fatigue, I'll try to see if I'm having the same experience. HD650s are the darkest headphones I have, but my brighter cans don't seem to cause this kind of sensitivity to treble or fatigue at all. 


Do you listen to bass-heavy or trebly music? 
 
Sep 30, 2015 at 12:00 PM Post #29,419 of 44,528

kman1211

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All of this sounds kind of familiar. I also listen at low volumes and experience shrillness and fatigue. 
 
Interesting that it's a sound pressure generated fatigue for you. The next time I get fatigue, I'll try to see if I'm having the same experience. HD650s are the darkest headphones I have, but my brighter cans don't seem to cause this kind of sensitivity to treble or fatigue at all. 

I have found the shrillness can be system dependent to a greater degree than the sound pressure in my experience. Great headphones but having fatigue issues with them is honestly disheartening as they offer a great sound and I really prefer the darker and warmer sound. I was pretty much forced to listen to my brighter headphones even though I had the ache to listen to the HD 650 or HD 600 due to their tonality.
 
Yeah, it was like the sound was trapped within the earcups and irritated my ears and causing a claustophobic sensation, loosing the clamp helped but never fixed it, I think I found the culprit to be the silver acoustic film as the old black-screen HD 650's didn't cause my ears discomfort. I've had a similar experience compared to my brighter headphones, brighter headphones only tend to bother me at higher listening levels. I've personally found darker planars and the nighthawks to not fatigue me in terms of warmer and darker headphones. 
 
Sep 30, 2015 at 12:40 PM Post #29,420 of 44,528

Tom Jenks

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Hey guys, 
 
I've had the HD 650's for about 2 weeks now, using them hours each day so plenty broken in.
 
My concern is that I can't hear a difference in quality plugging it directly into my Galaxy S6 phone, or through my PC using an ASUS Xonar DX sound card, into a O2 Headphone Amplifier. I did a blind test at about the same volume with no EQ and they sound the same to me.
 
What I don't understand is that if they're 300 Ohm headphones, how can a phone drive them at the same quality than my dedicated sound card and amp? Further I can't tell a difference between plugging directly into PC, or PC with amp.
 
Any ideas?
 
Sep 30, 2015 at 12:56 PM Post #29,421 of 44,528

Rem0o

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  Hey guys, 
 
I've had the HD 650's for about 2 weeks now, using them hours each day so plenty broken in.
 
My concern is that I can't hear a difference in quality plugging it directly into my Galaxy S6 phone, or through my PC using an ASUS Xonar DX sound card, into a O2 Headphone Amplifier. I did a blind test at about the same volume with no EQ and they sound the same to me.
 
What I don't understand is that if they're 300 Ohm headphones, how can a phone drive them at the same quality than my dedicated sound card and amp? Further I can't tell a difference between plugging directly into PC, or PC with amp.
 
Any ideas?

That's great, now you don't have to worry about what you are plugging them into, just enjoy them!  
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Sep 30, 2015 at 1:48 PM Post #29,422 of 44,528

Badfish5446

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  Hey guys, 
 
I've had the HD 650's for about 2 weeks now, using them hours each day so plenty broken in.
 
My concern is that I can't hear a difference in quality plugging it directly into my Galaxy S6 phone, or through my PC using an ASUS Xonar DX sound card, into a O2 Headphone Amplifier. I did a blind test at about the same volume with no EQ and they sound the same to me.
 
What I don't understand is that if they're 300 Ohm headphones, how can a phone drive them at the same quality than my dedicated sound card and amp? Further I can't tell a difference between plugging directly into PC, or PC with amp.
 
Any ideas?

Not everybody's ears can pickup up the differences, a lot of people think there will be this night and day difference between amp/no amp and real life listening rarely yields such extremes.  I personally have never tried to run my HD650's out of a phone as I have at least a dozen sets that are better suited to portability.  I can say the following comments regarding interaction with the HD650:
 
1) FiiO E11 - they get loud enough but I get flabby/wooly bass and miss out on midrange texture that I so love on the HD650's, highs come across very recessed and uneven
2) Denon 2808 Headphone Output - again loud enough, slightly less flabby bass, texture slightly better, no improvement on the highs
3) FiiO E9 - definitely lough enough, bass gets tighter, mid range texture comes out, highs are more present and more even.... this is a warm sounding amp which makes a warm headphone even warmer
4) Lyr with Phillips MiniWatt '69 - stands heads and tails above the rest, soundstage grows dramatically (these tubes have an awesome 3D soundstage), lows get tighter, highs are clean/clear, mid texture is great.  STILL NOT a night and day difference, but IMHO a significant one.
 
Properly driving the headphones is more about the amps ability to control the driver movement than sheer volume/power, remember that 95% of all headphone "measurements" are taken at one point in the frequency response.  Example: Beyer T1 is 600ohm nominal but hits over 1400 ohms around 100 hertz
 
Sep 30, 2015 at 2:47 PM Post #29,423 of 44,528

SunshineReggae

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  Hey guys, 
 
I've had the HD 650's for about 2 weeks now, using them hours each day so plenty broken in.
 
My concern is that I can't hear a difference in quality plugging it directly into my Galaxy S6 phone, or through my PC using an ASUS Xonar DX sound card, into a O2 Headphone Amplifier. I did a blind test at about the same volume with no EQ and they sound the same to me.
 
What I don't understand is that if they're 300 Ohm headphones, how can a phone drive them at the same quality than my dedicated sound card and amp? Further I can't tell a difference between plugging directly into PC, or PC with amp.
 
Any ideas?

 
Probably because those amps all aim for transparency (I know for a fact the O2 and the DX do) and the only thing holding them back from it would be insufficient power. But as you seem to have noticed, the HD650 is quite an easy headphone to drive, because its sensitivity is very high. In short, working as intended.
 
Sep 30, 2015 at 5:31 PM Post #29,426 of 44,528

Solrighal

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I'm 50 and in an online hearing test the best I can reliably do is 16kHz, after that I can't hear it. The trouble with a lot of treble-centric cans these days is that the spike isn't actually way up in the high's where it might be useful. It's rarely like that and usually spikes between 2kHz & 8kHz. In spite of all that I prefer the treble delivery of the HD 650 over anything. Anyway, the mids are so damn good the treble only has to keep up.
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Sep 30, 2015 at 5:34 PM Post #29,427 of 44,528

mechanix

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  I'm 65, retired and loving every day I no longer have to get up and go to work every morning. Moved from the frozen north of Chicago 4 years ago and now living in Central Florida and looking out the windows at palm trees and warm temps every day. Don't know why I didn't do that  years ago.
Otherwise I'm forgetting a lot of stuff that don't really matter, an still remember the stuff that makes me wiser than the youngsters. LOL
I was never no angel but when I drop I think I got just enough stuff in the Good column to square things with the man so I'm ready to go when the time comes.
 

The Great Gig in the Sky 
(Wright) 4:44 
"And I am not frightened of dying, any time will do, I 
don't mind. Why should I be frightened of dying? 
There's no reason for it, you've gotta go sometime." 

 
Just wanted to thank you for posting this, warmed my heart. I am only 25 yet, and I have always imagined my old age just like you have described. So it was possible after all.
 
I wish you many more healthy years to come.
 
Sep 30, 2015 at 6:33 PM Post #29,429 of 44,528

whirlwind

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Still feelin' good and music everyday soothes my soul.
 
Never knew the bass could be so punchy on the HD650  
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Life is good at 57!
 
Sep 30, 2015 at 8:04 PM Post #29,430 of 44,528

BobG55

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60 and living my retirement One Day at a Time remembering John Lennon's line in Beautiful Boy : "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans."  So true.  Live in the moment, that's all we have & one of the better ways to live in the moment is listening to my favourite music. 
 

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