Superlux HD669
Apr 1, 2011 at 8:05 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 11

Mink

Headphoneus Supremus
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Not sure if I should start a new thread about these headphones, but I didn't want to hijack other Superlux threads.
 
I just received my Superlux HD669s.
First impressions: for 30 EURO headphones they are really very good.
The sound is open, clear and with decent instrumental timbre and a really good soundstage considering they are closed and very cheap.
The bass is decent, with a slight mid-bass emphasize. Mids are pretty flat and the treble is smooth with good recordings, but can grate with poorer ones.
 
Compared to:
Audio Technica ATH-A500.
Altough the overal tonal quality is quite similar, the Superluxs are better, the sound is more cohesive, the soundstage more believable and natural, the A500s stretch, widen the overall picture too much, like a built-in home cinema surround setting, if you know what I mean.
The HD669's mids are more there with a slightly better natural instrumental timbre. Treble is similar, can be steely at times, but violins are a bit smoother.
The only part where the A500s are better is the bass, which is more textured.
 
Compared to:
Denon D5000
Poorer in every aspect, except isolation which is excellent with the Superluxs
Tonally the D5000s are richer and the instrumental timbre is way better, real instruments instead of reproduced ones.
The Superluxs sound thinner and not just because the bass is leaner, the mids aren't that rich and textured.
The soundstage of the D5000 is better as-well but not miles better, just more 3D and layered. more believable.
The D5000s don't posses any honkiness and echo-y nasties, the Superluxs do at times, just like the A500s
 
Overall they are really good considering the price.
From memory I like them better than Sennheiser HD280, Audio Technica M40fs and Audio Technica A900s as-well.
 
I may post some pictures, although there isn't much to see, they aren't exactly lookers.
 
 
Oh, by the way: they are pretty comfortable, the clamping is maybe a bit too tight and it will make your ears hotter than the Audio Technicas and Denons.
Isolation is great because of it.
 
 
Apr 1, 2011 at 9:49 AM Post #3 of 11
Oh crap, did I just wrote Superfi everywhere? 
I will edit it, thanks :)
 
 
Apr 1, 2011 at 1:14 PM Post #4 of 11
Quick update:
At low volume levels the sound is too thin, you really need to crank volume open to a certain loudness (louder than the D5000s) in order to get a fuller and more dynamic sound.
Add to this their tendency to get sibilant every now and then and I can conclude these cans aren't for the treble-shy people.
Maybe they smooth out when they 'break-in' but I doubt it, I don't believe in 'break-in'.
 
But overall the sound is really excellent for the money, imho they beat the A500s, which cost 5 times the Superluxs (150 EURO) in the Netherlands so they are excellent value.
 
 
Apr 2, 2011 at 12:20 PM Post #5 of 11
Thanks for your impressions! I was deciding between the HD669 and HD662 and got the 662. I am thoroughly impressed. For 20 euro they are stellar and beat, for example, the Sennheiser HD280pro in everything but build quality. 
 
I now own the Superlux HD668b, HD662 and HD381b and they all offer amazing bang for your buck. I might get the HD651 as well. 
 
Apr 2, 2011 at 1:21 PM Post #6 of 11
Thanks! 
bigsmile_face.gif

Yes I am getting more and more impressed with every listening session.
With good recorded orchestral music these headphones are amazing, more upfront than the D5000s, flatter (soundstage-wise) and also a bit more agressive, but without getting nasty or shrill.
You get that lively direct Mercury Living Presence sound.
If you're getting over the slight resonance, 'cupped in' sound than these are really great headphones.
Oh and the soundstage has some depth as-well, the D5000s are obviously better in this regard, but the HD669s aren't as extremely without any ambience like the ATH M40fs were, the reason why I got rid of them.
 
Apr 2, 2011 at 7:48 PM Post #7 of 11
Ok, just another update.
There are two rather big shortcomings: the bass doesn't go deep therefore the soundstage lacks true depth and the sound isn't dynamic, but rather compressed.
The lack of dynamics is a serious shortcoming in my opinion, the D5000s, A500s and my previous M40fs all do a better job in this respect.
 
Another thing is some weird inconsistency in the midrange.
With some classical recordings the mids are really forward, with lots of presence, more upfront than the D5000s but in other recordings there's a true lack of it and the mids are more recessed than the mids of the D5000s.
The weird thing is that those recordings aren't laid-back or distant, but rather close miked, so why aren't the mids there?
My guess is it's becaus of the overall compressed sound, that they make an average of the whole musical signal/loudness, but why some recordings are 'rendered' more upfront and others more laid-back I don't understand.
 
 
 
 
Apr 4, 2011 at 3:54 PM Post #8 of 11
Last update.
 
These headphones strengths are their clarity, imaging and vocals.
In a way they are similar to the AKG K271s, but with a slight wider soundstage.
Their soundstage is really remarkable for the price and closed desgin, only missing the deep bass to be really convincing.
 
Tonally the HD669s are almost identical to the Audio Technica A500s, but they beat the A500s with a more cohesive and better defined soundstage and a bit more clarity and definition, save for the bass, which the A500s handle better.
 
Some weaknesses (nitpicking considering their ridiculous low price) compared to my beloved D5000s
 
- Very slight plasticky resonance and very slight distortion/'ringing' with dynamic alterations/shifts in female vocals/sopranos (if the headphones were more dynamic I guess this distortion would occur more frequently and more obvious, just like the A500s do)
- Lack of dynamics, a tad compressed sound (but this prevents the headphones to become really 'ringy')
- Lack of (low) bass and the bass itself isn't very textured as well.
- Slight lack of definition, this weakness is ironically more noticable because of their biggest strength: their clarity, it lets you hear all the details but without 'finalizing' them, making a whole of them, it lacks the true timbre of instruments.
 
So there you have it.
All in all not bad for 30 Euro Headphones.
Unfortunately I cannot compare them directly with other studio phones in similar price range and more expensive.
But from memory I like them better than Senn HD280, Audio Technica M40fs, not sure about the AKG K271s though...but definitely better than my pair of Audio Technica A500s.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Apr 10, 2011 at 7:14 PM Post #9 of 11
I'm thinking about buying a pair of the 669s in a few weeks.

I was wondering how good the bass is. I have never owned a "real" pair of cans, nor tried one for comparison.
Are the complaints about the bass just a audiophile critics complaint on a $60 pair of cans vs $300, or is there a noticeable problem with it?

I know nothing about audio/headphones. I just want to be able to "feel" the lows while still being able to hear the mids and highs.

Some of the music I listen to: http://www.youtube.com/amonkeyz

Anyone tested if these get noticeable burn-in?
(Best pair I've owned are probably the HD 202...:p As long as its better than them. Just trying to confirm there is nothing wrong with the bass. Just a "could be better" kinda thing.)

Thanks a bunch,
Hunter
 
Apr 11, 2011 at 2:32 AM Post #10 of 11
Yes, the complaints have an audiophile nature for the biggest part :), in comparison with two big-bassed headphones anyways, both are more expensive than the Superlux HD669s (the A500s 5 times and the Denons at least 12 times - prices are up and down)
 
However, if you are a true basshead and prefer a big bass over clarity than you should look elsewhere.
You wrote:
 
I know nothing about audio/headphones. I just want to be able to "feel" the lows while still being able to hear the mids and highs.
 
In this case I would look at the Sony XB500s I think (although I never heard them), because HD669s bass is nowhere near at the level where you can feel it.

 
 
 
Apr 11, 2011 at 2:52 AM Post #11 of 11
Yes, the complaints have an audiophile nature for the biggest part :), in comparison with two big-bassed headphones anyways, both are more expensive than the Superlux HD669s (the A500s 5 times and the Denons at least 12 times - prices are up and down)
 
However, if you are a true basshead and prefer a big bass over clarity than you should look elsewhere.
You wrote:
 
I know nothing about audio/headphones. I just want to be able to "feel" the lows while still being able to hear the mids and highs.
 
In this case I would look at the Sony XB500s I think (although I never heard them), because HD669s bass is nowhere near at the level where you can feel it.

 
 


Thanks!

I think I'll stick with the 669. I did some research on the XB500s and don't think they're right for me.
I'm starting to go back into rock and classical and these seems like pretty good balanced headphones that can be used with most genres of music.

I'll order a pair sometime near the end of the month.

Thanks,
Hunter
 

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