Sennheiser HD650 & Massdrop HD6XX Impressions Thread
May 6, 2022 at 4:29 PM Post #44,926 of 45,077

hottyson

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I’d be curious to know specifically what solid state amps you’ve tried with your 6xx that you find so unappealing, since my experience is quite different (granted, my 650s are slightly modified and I am using a $1,000 Class A SS amp at the back end of a mid-five figure system to drive them). The point is that there is a reason the 580/600/650 (I own a pair of each) have been around so long, and that reason is certainly NOT because they’re the worst.
All of the amps I own including Questyle CMA Twelve, Ray Samuels Emmeline II The Raptor, Ray Samuels Emmeline HR-2, Ray Samuels Emmeline XP-7, DarkVoice 336SE, Singxer SA-1, RebelAudio Rebel Amp, JVC SU-DH1, Little Dot I+ (LT1364), Little Dot MK III, Monolith Liquid Spark, Beyerdynamic A20, HeadAmp Gilmore Lite, HeadAmp Gilmore Lite Mk2, Marantz 2245, JDS Labs Atom, Schiit Lyr 3, Schiit Jotunheim, Schiit Jotunheim 2, Schiit Magni 3+, Schiit Asgard 3, Schiit Magni 3, S.M.S.L. SP200, Drop AAA 789, DROP Liquid Carbon X + SDAC, Lusya Fever DAC/amp, MH-752, NuForce Icon uDAC/amp, Worst amp in the world is the Topping L30 and a few more.
I do think you’re missing out if you don’t know that a properly fed pair of 650’s is a great listen.

Enjoy!
I know most love this headphone and I am in the minority. However, it sounds awful to me. I do own the HD580 HD650S and even though they don't have great resolution, I enjoy them.
 
May 6, 2022 at 4:45 PM Post #44,927 of 45,077

Strat1117

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All of the amps I own including Questyle CMA Twelve, Ray Samuels Emmeline II The Raptor, Ray Samuels Emmeline HR-2, Ray Samuels Emmeline XP-7, DarkVoice 336SE, Singxer SA-1, RebelAudio Rebel Amp, JVC SU-DH1, Little Dot I+ (LT1364), Little Dot MK III, Monolith Liquid Spark, Beyerdynamic A20, HeadAmp Gilmore Lite, HeadAmp Gilmore Lite Mk2, Marantz 2245, JDS Labs Atom, Schiit Lyr 3, Schiit Jotunheim, Schiit Jotunheim 2, Schiit Magni 3+, Schiit Asgard 3, Schiit Magni 3, S.M.S.L. SP200, Drop AAA 789, DROP Liquid Carbon X + SDAC, Lusya Fever DAC/amp, MH-752, NuForce Icon uDAC/amp, Worst amp in the world is the Topping L30 and a few more.

I know most love this headphone and I am in the minority. However, it sounds awful to me. I do own the HD580 HD650S and even though they don't have great resolution, I enjoy them.
That’s a lotta amps!

I assume you mean 660S, which is a completely different driver than the 580/600/650. I didn’t love that one and returned it after a few weeks. The 580 doesn’t get the attention it deserves - mine (with some mods) are still in service in my office setup. Anyway, like I said, horses for courses - if you don’t like ‘em, you don’t like ‘em; no judgment from me. There are plenty of popular headphones (Hifiman) and amps (Schiit) that I don’t particularly like either.

Enjoy!
 
May 6, 2022 at 6:03 PM Post #44,928 of 45,077

hottyson

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That’s a lotta amps!

I assume you mean 660S, which is a completely different driver than the 580/600/650. I didn’t love that one and returned it after a few weeks. The 580 doesn’t get the attention it deserves - mine (with some mods) are still in service in my office setup. Anyway, like I said, horses for courses - if you don’t like ‘em, you don’t like ‘em; no judgment from me. There are plenty of popular headphones (Hifiman) and amps (Schiit) that I don’t particularly like either.

Enjoy!
Sorry, typing on mobile. I meant HD580 and HD560S sound good.
 
May 7, 2022 at 5:32 AM Post #44,929 of 45,077

Flisker

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All of the amps I own including Questyle CMA Twelve, Ray Samuels Emmeline II The Raptor, Ray Samuels Emmeline HR-2, Ray Samuels Emmeline XP-7, DarkVoice 336SE, Singxer SA-1, RebelAudio Rebel Amp, JVC SU-DH1, Little Dot I+ (LT1364), Little Dot MK III, Monolith Liquid Spark, Beyerdynamic A20, HeadAmp Gilmore Lite, HeadAmp Gilmore Lite Mk2, Marantz 2245, JDS Labs Atom, Schiit Lyr 3, Schiit Jotunheim, Schiit Jotunheim 2, Schiit Magni 3+, Schiit Asgard 3, Schiit Magni 3, S.M.S.L. SP200, Drop AAA 789, DROP Liquid Carbon X + SDAC, Lusya Fever DAC/amp, MH-752, NuForce Icon uDAC/amp, Worst amp in the world is the Topping L30 and a few more.
That's quite a collection!

Yea, if you don't find HD650 enjoyable on Asgard/Lyr 3 then I don't think any amp is going to make it interesting for your ears.

I remember not getting the hype when using portable or just cheap amps back then, but once I got Magni 1, I was sold on HD650.
 
May 7, 2022 at 5:36 AM Post #44,930 of 45,077

Flisker

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I assume you mean 660S, which is a completely different driver than the 580/600/650.

660S might actually be worth a try for someone who doesn't like 650, since it's got much more speed, boosted bass and is easier to drive. But I feel like it's missing some of that midrange magic of 650's.
 
May 20, 2022 at 9:15 AM Post #44,933 of 45,077

Strat1117

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currently a Burson Conductor SL160D is a good match for a hd 650?
I certainly like the Burson/Sennheiser match, although it sounds like you may have your model designations a little mixed up. Burson is class A SS with a stiff power supply. It will control the 650s with ease and give you a great musical sound. I have, among others, an HA-160DS, which may have become the model you mention or may be the same. I currently use it with my DCA Aeon Open X, but it is a delightful combo with the 650. My 650 are on a straight Soloist, which has been my favorite combo with them, because the Senns seem to like the extra juice and the stepped attenuator, which can sound bright with some headphones, is perfectly complementary to the 650s slightly dark and sexy tuning. The Soloist has more power than the SL, but I think the lower power Soloist SL (which I use in my main system with a pair of LCD-X) may be a bit more ‘pure’ (some days, when the humidity is just so 🥸) and is probably the same as your amp without the built-in dac. It has plenty of power to manage the 650s.

I know it’s controversial to say, and the oem 650 cable is actually quite competent, but I also recommend moving up to a cord made with something like mogami or canare wire with good connectors - it will allow your amp/headphone combo to really shine, and should not be too costly. I think Venus cable or stinky1965 on eBay have good, reasonably priced options. I’m not saying to invest $500 in a cable, but a $100 investment might pay nice dividends.

Ymmv.

Enjoy!
 
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May 20, 2022 at 1:45 PM Post #44,934 of 45,077

BobG55

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I have, among others, an HA-160DS, which may have become the model you mention or may be the same. My 650 are on a straight Soloist, which has been my favorite combo with them, because the Senns seem to like the extra juice and the stepped attenuator, which can sound bright with some headphones, is perfectly complementary to the 650s slightly dark and sexy tuning. The doloist has more power than the SL, but I think the lower power Soloist SL (which I use I my main system with a pair of LCD-X) may be a bit more ‘pure’, and is probably the same as your amp without the built-in dac. It has plenty of power to manage the 650s.
I use my HD650 w/ my HA-160 (no dac); Burson sound signature of the HA-160 similar to the Soloist. I also find the Burson sound signature of my HA-160 to be the perfect sounding amp for my HD650.
01D245E5-355D-404D-A963-743A2F502DE1.jpeg
 
May 20, 2022 at 4:14 PM Post #44,936 of 45,077

rafaelo

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I’m not saying to invest $500 in a cable, but a $100 investment might pay nice dividends.
A 25£ price cable makes big difference to me I cannot imagine what a 100$ can do. (Admittedly this price before the crasy boom in commodities prices and the current state of inflation...maybe 100 is what is needed now ...:) )
 
May 21, 2022 at 12:27 AM Post #44,937 of 45,077

BobG55

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I’ve reached a point in my headphone audio hobby/ journey where I listen to my music with my HD650 & HD600, 90% of the time now. My other two headphones are the AKG 701 (Austria) and the Beyer T1.1. In the past I’ve owned such headphones as the Focal Utopia, the HD800 & HD800 S, Grado PS2000e & GS3000e along w/ the GS1000i.

My amps now are the Burson HA-160 & my vintage Kenwood Integrated Amp, KA8006, 70wpc, [1974].
I’ve owned Eddie Current Zana Deux S, Headamp GS-X MKII w/ DACt & a few other very expensive amps.

I listen to CDs w/ my TEAC PD H600, probably the best CD player TEAC has ever produced. It was assembled w/ many Esoteric parts and is all aluminium. I also use a Schiit Lokius EQ and highly recommend EQing for music listening. I found the “right sound” and rarely have to adjust any of the tone controls. The music overall is rich, full and detailed. Because of reading the threads in the Sound Science Forum I’ve learned that I don’t have to spend a lot of money like I used to do to get an excellent balanced sound like I have now.

So, for me anyways, it’s become possible to achieve an elite, rich and detailed sound without spending the thousands which I did in the past. No, I can’t use measure charts (don’t understand them) & I can’t talk audio jargon to explain myself (not my thing) but I know what my ears and my mind recognize sound wise. It took me approximately 10 years, the last two or so, to convince myself that I could achieve a “great” sound without spending all that dough (mainly thanks to the Sound Science Forum). The only thing I’ve bought during this past two years is the Burson HA160 for $300 Canadian.

The point of my long winded post : The HD650 (it’s not veiled) & HD600 are just as good headphones and to my ears better than more expensive headphones I’ve owned in the past. Now I listen to music and not my audio items. This is just my opinion, it is not meant to disparage anyone else’s opinion or opposing view(s). I respect everyone’s opinion and I also do not wish to debate my position.
 
May 21, 2022 at 12:40 PM Post #44,938 of 45,077

Flisker

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The point of my long winded post : The HD650 (it’s not veiled) & HD600 are just as good headphones and to my ears better than more expensive headphones I’ve owned in the past. Now I listen to music and not my audio items. This is just my opinion, it is not meant to disparage anyone else’s opinion or opposing view(s). I respect everyone’s opinion and I also do not wish to debate my position.

I bet this is situation a lot of people endup in. I had exactly the same experience over 10+ years. Chasing all the expensive headphones and always came back to 650's. Unfortunately I didn't completely stop upgrading, just decided that it's not about better headphones, but about better chain :D so still hoping I can some day get Denafrips Terminator Plus or Holo Spring 3.
 
May 21, 2022 at 5:17 PM Post #44,940 of 45,077

Strat1117

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I bet this is situation a lot of people endup in. I had exactly the same experience over 10+ years. Chasing all the expensive headphones and always came back to 650's. Unfortunately I didn't completely stop upgrading, just decided that it's not about better headphones, but about better chain :D so still hoping I can some day get Denafrips Terminator Plus or Holo Spring 3.
+1
It’s ALWAYS about the chain.
 

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