Soundmagic HP150/HP151 Impressions Thread
Dec 7, 2017 at 2:56 PM Post #676 of 769

bmcelvan

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The HP150 and 151s are identical in the sound reproduction department, right? The only difference is structural?
I'm trying to decide between the HP151s and DT770_80ohms but I haven't been able to find much out there as far as comparisons go...but there is some on the HP150.
 
Dec 31, 2017 at 4:01 AM Post #677 of 769

dhruvmeena96

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Why HP150:

I see so many glowing reviews out there about his phone for a long time ( HP100/200 ) and I see why. Some reviewers even mentioned this better than Sennheiser HD600/650. That's basically what triggered my addiction to snatch this phone. I love HD650 and my 10 year old M50 to death. If I would be in the stranded island I'll take HD650 and my two cats with me. Well..my ALO Continental as well to make 'em Sing!
I need something that sounds a more airy and maybe a little bright and sizzles on top for more excitment. Also my hope the bass will sound like M50 more impact and extend deeper.

Build:

The phone feels great it is well constructed, nice new smell and the pad is really soft. It is similar clam force to M50 but way softer good for long listening and also provide good isolation. No dislike in this department. Cable is also nice very soft and flexible not flimsy and fetuccine-like such as NAD viso HP50.

Sound:

Fun part! This headphone has a very detail I mean CRYSTAL clear sound the treble that extends up to 30Khz. It sound as clear as planar HE400...No even better due to more high extension!
HE400 feels warmer compare to HP150 but they both have clear sound stage and upper highs. The sound is also very open and sound stage is GINORMOUS ! Instrument separation is also really clear. I need to pair HD650 with ALO Continental to match this but HP150 does this out of my FiiO X5/AP100 straight no external amp.

Not only the treble but the bass gets some make over too it extends really low and pretty audible. It makes certain music rumble and give more impact. I would imagine Beyerdynamic DT series maybe Denon but not that much. If you like bass you'll love this phone.
( I am listening to it as I'm typing and can't resist to shake my shoulders- can't do hips cuz I'm sitting )

HP150 presents the music more VIVID and Vibrant like watching super bright LED TV on displays at BestBuy while HD650 is more like Plasma TV , more true to color and silky smooth. HP150 doesn't have intimate presentation but more like big room or Hall to me which is nice for classical and ambient music or soundtracks or games too. Sometimes when switching back to M50 or HD650 it makes these two phones sound congested and dark...also "veiled". Now I know why people say this.

Compare to M50 or HD650 the sound of HP150 is more 2D-like. It has a very wide space but not enough depth and not as thick and analog sounding as the other two. I also find it doesn't have much character to the sound only neutral and more on bright side. It doesn't seem to have sibilance but when listening to a poor recording it is a little painful.
M50 might not have the width and spaciousness but it has more texture as well as depth like a live stage presentation.

Do I think it is transparent ? Un-colored ? Organic ?
Honestly...not really.
Musical ? nope...not by itself.
In my mind transparent means it sounds like the real instrument playing in front of you. I can see it with my ears and as if I could touch it. FiiO X5 pairs with HD 650 is very transparent..not to confuse with clarity.

I grew up in the 80's where people made good music that's very musical. They used top notch tube compression and EQ to breath life to music make them sound better than original recording and I feel that this phone "stripped" those attributes off and make 'em clinical. If you want to listen a modern recording ie. gaga, techno, ambient, justin bieber or britney spears than HP150 alone is perfect. To my ears it needs amping to give it a "soul"

Highs:

The treble is nicely extended and it's smooth, very open and airy but at times it also feels a little too much. If you see the FR there is a pretty much stable line going from 3Khz to 10Khz where most other headphones would have dips, valleys and roll offs. Listening to this phone makes me realize why those dips and valleys are needed.
You need them because there is an offending freq somewhere on the treble area that makes it sound fatiguing and harsh and you don't need to hear that. It also makes the vocal or mid freq sound fuller and warmer.

Mids:

The vocals on HP150 sounds a little cold, less body. If it was a little warmer it would have been perfect. HD650 excels at this.
M50 has better and smoother vocal but HP150 sound more open and maybe detailed.

Now the bass:

On the FR chart there is an almost even line/respond from 500Hz down slightly tilted up towards 30hz plus a small peak between 30 and 40 Hz. Most phones would a have roll off below 50 hz except Beyerdynamic and other V shape like Moda. This creates a bass that almost has no body and texture but more boomy type ( or fluid ). HP150 has a big bass that sounds like a small subwoofer. Great for Dance, House Tech etc!!

HE400 is famous for it's bass response lean, clean and textured with great extension , never boomy or bloated. With HP150 bass is not lean but more sub-like. Sometimes feels a bit boomy I guess because of the little peak around 30-40hz and also depends on source material. The bass adds contrast to the treble which makes it sound like a "V" shape style phone.
I can say HP150 has more rumble or sub bass while M50 has more low mid body bass with extension to sub freq.

Amping:

HP150 doesn't really need amping but it always helps. With E12 it sounds even punchier and the bass is a little controlled. But it is still clinical and bright without character. Overall presentation feels a bit forward.
This combo is good for faster and energetic music ie. techno, EDM, maybe classical too.

With RSA Predator it breathes a bit more warm and musicality that I'm missing. It makes vocals sound like more "human". Slower songs sound a bit better and vocals are having more body. Treble calms down a bit. Bottom line I will always need an amp with tube or solid state character when using this phone.

Final thoughts:

HP150 is a very good phone. If you like clarity, open and spacious sound with prominent bass this is for you. It's the most clear sound I ever heard so far. To me it sounds slightly V shape. It has a neutral response with more bass emphasize and trebles that's more on brighter side, best with more modern music and energetic kind of song ie. EDM, techno, hip hop modern pop etc. . Well, slow songs is okay too. If you're coming from Beyerdynamic DT or Denon you might like it a lot but if you're like me coming from M50 and HD650...mixed feelings! I need time to get used to the brighter and non mid centric sound.

I honestly don't think HP series is better than HD650...not even close. Just because it has more clarity, openess and huge sound stage it doesn't make it better.
How about with M50 ? it is a good up grade .To me it's about sound preference bright and spacious vs warmer and intimate.
With HD650 (paired with right amp> I have ALO Continental) every single music is an Experience. I don't feel like I'm listening through headphone - more like I am there. Frank or Barbra would sing their hearts out and I will give 'em a hug. While this phone sounds like a very good headphone.

Never thought I would need to pair this phone with more powerful amp like ALO continental since it's only 32ohm. I tried it anyway and........WOW!
It really improved the texture and musicality. It sounds more believable only this time with a bit more vivid pic but still not the depth and organic qualities of HD650. I like this.

Back to my objective, did I find what I was looking for ?
>.....I need time....

well, nice review.

But about tube amps make song more musical is very wrong. It just sound congested to me. My dad always appreciated tube, but after i gave him the taste of O2+burson v6 vivid+ booster board, he changed his view.

Well his words were.

Omg... How can something sound so big. Its like i can position accurately where instruments are.

Well back to point.

If amp is designed perfectly, it can beat anything( just make sure, if you are not studio guy, get a laid back headphones)

new amps are cheaper, superior and if designed properly, it can shake your tube amps.

Well it sounds smooth but congested.


Well we have consonance m10s which is a tube amp flagship
 
Jul 28, 2018 at 7:47 PM Post #678 of 769

cel4145

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I know. I'm waking the dead by posting to this thread. But any of you guys who would like a headphone somewhat similar to the HP100/HP150 but (a) a little smaller, making them better for travel and (b) without the build quality issues, check out the 1More Triple Driver over ear headphones:
https://usa.1more.com/collections/headphones/products/tripleoverear

I have been loving mine. But it's been so long since I owned the HP150s, that I was hesitant to suggest the similarity. Then today someone who still has the HP100 compared them:
https://www.head-fi.org/threads/1more-h1707-triple-driver-over-ear.849824/page-40#post-14388492
 
Jul 28, 2018 at 7:52 PM Post #679 of 769

Slater

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I know. I'm waking the dead by posting to this thread. But any of you guys who would like a headphone somewhat similar to the HP100/HP150 but (a) a little smaller, making them better for travel and (b) without the build quality issues, check out the 1More Triple Driver over ear headphones:
https://usa.1more.com/collections/headphones/products/tripleoverear

I have been loving mine. But it's been so long since I owned the HP150s, that I was hesitant to suggest the similarity. Then today someone who still has the HP100 compared them:
https://www.head-fi.org/threads/1more-h1707-triple-driver-over-ear.849824/page-40#post-14388492

I own both versions of the H1707, as well as the HP150 and HP200. I will compare them all and evaluate their similarities.

Thanks for the heads up!
 
Jul 28, 2018 at 10:06 PM Post #680 of 769

cel4145

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I own both versions of the H1707, as well as the HP150 and HP200. I will compare them all and evaluate their similarities.

Thanks for the heads up!

That would be awesome. I Soundmagic fans that might be into the 1Mores if they new more about them.
 
Oct 12, 2018 at 8:24 AM Post #681 of 769

Chein

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Anybody got to test the HP1000? Seen several pics on internet but no info about them at all.
I wonder if they just changed the structure of the headphones or also modified the sound signature.

0001.JPG

0002.jpg
 
Oct 12, 2018 at 10:39 AM Post #682 of 769

Slater

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Anybody got to test the HP1000? Seen several pics on internet but no info about them at all.
I wonder if they just changed the structure of the headphones or also modified the sound signature.



Glad to see they changed the hinge design...
 
Oct 12, 2018 at 5:26 PM Post #683 of 769

Chein

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Glad to see they changed the hinge design...

Yeah, I really liked my HP150... until one hinge broke...

I've found a Ukrainian video on youtube showcasing the SoundMAGIC stand at the IFA 2018:


The HP1000 look way sturdier, they also use symmetrical cables with proprietary? connectors, Tony Xu says they're not fully finalized... the sound signature might change on this model.
 
Oct 12, 2018 at 5:30 PM Post #684 of 769

Slater

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Yeah, I really liked my HP150... until one hinge broke...

I've found a Ukrainian video on youtube showcasing the SoundMAGIC stand at the IFA 2018:


The HP1000 look way sturdier, they also use symmetrical cables with proprietary? connectors, Tony Xu says they're not fully finalized... the sound signature might change on this model.


Yeah, that hinge is terrible. There’s no way to fix it. I can only imagine how many HP150 and 200 there are out there with busted hinges that are otherwise perfect.

I’m pretty sure there’s even other SM models that use the same hinge, which would also be susceptible to breaking.

My SM breaking was one of the things that started an obsession with acquiring bullet proof headphones (metal construction, metal hinges, etc) - Philips A50 Pro, Sennheiser HP630VB, Meizu HD50, Bluedio T3, Bluedio T4S, Sennheiser Momentum, etc.
 
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Oct 12, 2018 at 7:16 PM Post #685 of 769

Beagle

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I found the 150 bright and bass-less.
 
Oct 12, 2018 at 8:42 PM Post #686 of 769

WhiskeyJacks

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I feel like they are not bass-less, just not pronounced in the bass or as much slam as many closed back headphones, but I do feel like it has good bass and as well as having a large sound stage for a closed back. I do think they are brighter but not to the point where I didn't enjoy them. But many opinions will differ, what amps did you pair with yours by chance? I used mine through portable means most of the time around the house.
 
Oct 12, 2018 at 10:05 PM Post #687 of 769

Beagle

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They sound clean, clear and open right out of the gate. But over time they become bright and irritating for me. What little bass there is just seems to get littler.
 
Oct 12, 2018 at 10:18 PM Post #688 of 769

cel4145

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They sound clean, clear and open right out of the gate. But over time they become bright and irritating for me. What little bass there is just seems to get littler.

If you haven't yet, try the 1More Triple Driver Over Ear. Not as bright, but (based on memory of the HP150) similar bass. Maybe a little more. From Tyll's review at Innerfidelity (he put them on the Wall of Fame)

1More_TrippleDriverOverEar_Photo_TDOEHFreqPhase.jpg
 
Oct 12, 2018 at 10:24 PM Post #690 of 769

Beagle

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If you haven't yet, try the 1More Triple Driver Over Ear. Not as bright, but (based on memory of the HP150) similar bass.
The H1707? I have this. I'll do a comparison.
 

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