Sennheiser HD820
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OK, after a night “burn in” of Genelex russian tuben on my Mjolnir 2, here my opinion on these. Compared To the 1962 Philips Miniwatt NOS. Tested with hi-res version of tubular bells - upsampled to double DSD (“because I can”).
Significantly warmer. Which is a good match with my HD 820. The Philips’ were more thin and harsh. Interesting to hear this big of a difference, didn’t expect this!
The detail is equal.
So, they may stay
 
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If the 820s don't sound like an open headphone, and I've yet to hear any revelatory comments from owners to indicate that they do, then the 820 doesn't achieve what Sennheiser claim they do.
Does any product end up matching the advertising hype word for word?
 
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To be fair, dcfac73, the soundstage is perceptibly larger on the 820 than it is on my Utopias...
 
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My interest has waned to the point where I think it is best to wait until the end of the year. At that point, there will be a general consensus apparent, and perhaps a drop in price (or used options available). I don't want to buy and have to return, just because of curiosity.
 
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To be fair, dcfac73, the soundstage is perceptibly larger on the 820 than it is on my Utopias...
I think there are a few closed cans with great soundstage. Eg th900.
My idea of an open sound is a natural soundstage with natural and immersive imaging. Open cans put you in a 3d place in the audio while closed cans tend to put the image in a 2d like way in front of you.
Closed cans also have this kind of fatiguing quality to listen to. I'm not sure if it's from the sound bouncing back from the cups. They are generally less relaxing and natural to listen to.
 
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Does any product end up matching the advertising hype word for word?
This is true, but for this headphone it is the main selling point. That's why, supposedly, it's so expensive.
 
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This is true, but for this headphone it is the main selling point. That's why, supposedly, it's so expensive.
I suppose. I was hoping for most of the HD800 sound with a smoother treble, but around the same price. When it was announced at $2399, I had to expect even more. Now it would appear that it does not even reach the level of the HD800s sound. So what do you get for your extra $800? Just the isolation?
 
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i expect that the hd820 will sound like a closed version of the hd800s. the impressions that i'm seeing here indicate as much.
 
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having thicker mids is a plus for me but for the price tag I might have to wait and demo it first
 
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Thanks




Post amended to reflect 30 day return policy. My mistake, I was confusing it with other online places where I order audio equipment ...



I agree with it being thin in some areas of the high-midrange and low treble. At least in comparison to the Utopia and Susvara.

Bright, I don’t hear at all personally, but perhaps that’s because I’m comparing with the Utopia which can be grating sometimes for me.

Bass sometimes has a little disconnect at the very low end, but that seems to be when the instrument is panned to extreme right or left with little to no crossfeed to the alternate ear.

It seems like the FR curve on the 820 is generally what is wanted on headphones to compensate for human hearing curves. It’s not far off of flat and is accentuated in reasonable places. Perhaps that is why it sounds better to me than the 800S.

As far as comparing them to the Susvara, which I was able to acquire again recently, there is still no comparison. Susvara is still in a whole other ballpark of sound. However, I’m very happy with the 820 considering they are closed-back. It ticks all the right boxes for me and allows me to listen while there is ambient noise in the room or my GF sleeping next to me.

Price of course is relative for different people. Do I wish I paid $1500 versus full price? Of course. I’m not going to return them and wait for availability on the secondhand market though. The premium was worth it to be an early adapter, IMO.
I love the upper mid and low treble in hd800S. Why would a closed back hd820 has these reduced ? That is sad
i expect that the hd820 will sound like a closed version of the hd800s. the impressions that i'm seeing here indicate as much.
If the upper mid and lower treble is thinner than Utopia, then the Hd280 is nothing compare to Hd800s
 
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I love the upper mid and low treble in hd800S. Why would a closed back hd820 has these reduced ? That is sad


If the upper mid and lower treble is thinner than Utopia, then the Hd280 is nothing compare to Hd800s
Not sure what to say, the 800S sounded even worse to me in that respect. The whole sound spectrum sounded more diffuse and less detailed to me. Perhaps go demo a pair. Maybe your experience will be different.
 
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IME, thicker mids or bump on the mid bass sometimes make the high mids less pronounced.. but planars like lcd3f, 4 and diana manage to balance this
 
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I love the upper mid and low treble in hd800S. Why would a closed back hd820 has these reduced ? That is sad


If the upper mid and lower treble is thinner than Utopia, then the Hd280 is nothing compare to Hd800s
well you won't be able to confirm that for yourself until you try it, which I presume you haven't done yet
 
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Closed cans also have this kind of fatiguing quality to listen to.
I mean this is a matter of taste. Personally I've always thought the exact opposite. I much prefer mixing music for long hours on closed cans which is why I'm interested in these cans in the first place.

I suppose. I was hoping for most of the HD800 sound with a smoother treble, but around the same price. When it was announced at $2399, I had to expect even more. Now it would appear that it does not even reach the level of the HD800s sound. So what do you get for your extra $800? Just the isolation?
If you check just a few of those hands-on impressions available already on the internet / youtube most ppl seem to actually prefer the sound of the 820. The soundstage seem to be slightly smaller on the 820 though but that can actually be a good thing for some people. Again personal preferences. I agree that the price is really high though but for me if it delivers a true transparent closed can mixing experience then this is what I've been waiting for for a long time.
 
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I mean this is a matter of taste. Personally I've always thought the exact opposite. I much prefer mixing music for long hours on closed cans which is why I'm interested in these cans in the first place.


If you check just a few of those hands-on impressions available already on the internet / youtube most ppl seem to actually prefer the sound of the 820. The soundstage seem to be slightly smaller on the 820 though but that can actually be a good thing for some people. Again personal preferences. I agree that the price is really high though but for me if it delivers a true transparent closed can mixing experience then this is what I've been waiting for for a long time.
I second that. I used to have the 800, now I am one of the early people actually owning the 820. And I prefer the soundstage of the 820. Yes, narrower, but the 800 was, for me, artificially wide. Also the sound balance is more even.
The more I listen to it, the more I appreciate it. And no, it is not fatiguing. Compared ro my LCD-X (which is open) for sure not as it is so much lighter.
 
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