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The JVC HA-S500 thread.

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  1. analogsurviver
    Thank you for all your answers regarding HA-S500. While at earpads comparisons - how much worse is isolation with Senn velours than stock pads ?
    If  per any chance I end up using these for monitoring while recording, any n-th increase in isolation is welcome - but the increase in comfort looks tempting too. Please try listening to the same music on loudspekars at your normal listening level, once with velors, once with stock pads - without signal in phones of course. Is there a significant difference in isolation in any part of the spectrum between the two or it is more linear, just one having more sound from the speakers coming through than the other?
    Best regards
  2. Dsnuts Contributor
    Well I think due to the relatively thin cups. Isolation is not a strong point of these headphones. But with music pumping it don't matter to me one bit. Plus I never question the end results in the sound if they end up sounding this good.  I don't intend to mod these headphones beyond the velours as I don't find anything in the sound that needs any type of work or mod to change at all. Maybe  someone will come up with a grill mod to fully open the back end of these to give more stage.. That would be interesting. But for now I am ecstatic with the sounds these throw out.
    The stock pads do have a little more isolation so maybe for monitoring they can be used with the stock pads. But not a significant increase in isolation. I Now if I was planning on using these for long periods of time I think that is where the velours would be optimal.
  3. DaBomb77766
    I wonder what adding a bit of acoustic foam in the cups would do though...
  4. analogsurviver
    Thank you for the answer. If these were anything less than they obviously are based on comments of the few who already enjoy them, I would not have bothered in such detail. I would preferably go with IEM for monitoring, but these as a breed are tricky due to ear canal resonances and are subject to differences in depth of insertion, something onears are relatively immune from. You can believe me that recording sessions from 3 to 6+ hours at a time, with barely any pause ( between takes I still need to find particular spots artist would like to check ) for ears to breathe, can be taxing indeed. Still, I would rather "suffer" a bit more with stock pads than make lesser recording due to comfier pads.
    For home/portable use it is no brainer, specially after your comment there is minimal difference in timbre in the treble. What particularly attracked me to HA-S 500 were your unhiglihted but constant remarks troughout this thread regarding their dynamic range capabilities - I can live with some colouration here or there, but not with dynamic compression. Slight colourations can be EQed out, loss of dynamics can not be retrieved. How does HA-S 500 fare at extremely soft levels, say with acoustic guitar:
    Thanks in advance & just keep up the good work !
  5. Dsnuts Contributor
    The sound has much depth as it does power and range. The subtleties of this track the depth of the guitar strings come through very nicely. Great detail on the sound..Mellow to dramatic rhythm changes flow very well. Tight yet full of natural reverb. Lovely sound in deed. That is a great guitar piece.
    Versatile cuz they hit them notes with authority.
  6. analogsurviver
    That is all I wanted to hear ! I like your description of the sound AND the music ! I appreciate it really very much - thanks.
    I was not familiar with this particular Brouwer piece prior to recording I made roughly 3 years ago and it is my fav guitar piece ever since. I was delighted to find such a good version on YT too.
    I relinquish the floor to other head-fiers until my pair arrives - I will chime in if I see something where I can help. ETA Aug 28 - 13 Sep - it will be quite a wait.
    Best regards & enjoy your music,
  7. Mad Max
    Kill some resonances.  It may open up the soundstage a bit.  It will certainly soften the bass impact to some extent as well as reduce or eliminate aggressive note attack if enough foam is used ( you get a more "peaceful" sound that way, assuming that it already isn't).  It could have additional effects, you would have to try it to see what really happens.
  8. 7S Cameron
    I just wanna say, until now I haven't actually read through the thread and seen all your posts about the headphones. I have decided that these are definitely the next pair of headphones that I get, I can't wait! Also, I love power, how are these in that department?
  9. cyloh
    Okay picture time if anyone's interested.
    The driver is exactly 40mm, held on by some glue. A thin blade and steady hands will pry the driver off for those who intend to go that far.
    Notice there are 2 vents that are not covered by the paper like mesh. Unsure if covering one or both holes will change the sound for the better or worst.
    This is how the cup looks like. 3 dabs of glue for reasons unknown. Perhaps to cover 3 vents? Or to hold on to the outer cup?
    So here's what I did, added blue-tak(or in my case, green-tak) to the cup.
    A layer of felt on top of the blue-tak and pressed down firmly so it sticks well.
    Impressions? Slightly wider soundstage, a bit less forward sound signature. Bass seems to be slightly boomier too. I don't have golden ears here though.
    The comfort level is horrible for me on these. I am considering picking up the S600 just for a driver transplant. That or the velour pads path.
    Neither will work well for me financially since I'm in malaysia. Although the S600 or velour pads are roughly $30, shipping alone costs 40 bucks.
  10. analogsurviver
    Thank you for update. As the driver looks like miniaturized version of the speaker, how much is the height of the "basket" (lower part with bigger diameter where diaphragm is ) and height of the "magnet" (upper part with magnet and PCB with soldering lugs)  - or at least both measured together ?
    If place in JVC HM-200E, for which I would like to canibalize the driver from HA-S500, was not that restricted, I would not insist on asking for height dimension(s) of HA-S500 driver that much. The driver and space in cup of the HM-200E is very pancake-ish.
    I like the colour of your native "blue tak" - over here it is "grey-brown tak". Appreciate your comments regarding sound changes after your mod. A bit surprised you mentioned boomier bass - try perhaps with thinner layer(s) for both "blue tak" and felt - you would be changing the volume of the cup less and it might lessen the increase in boominess compared to stock version while still achieving slightly wider soundstage.
    The best place to look for the "thin felt" would be some store with fabric sold on metre, where you would be perhaps the only male customer among ladies, made even more stand out due to the fact you should select your fabric of choice on one sole criterium - the most absorption/damping you can get. The only way to do that is by holding one layer of the fabric with both arms in front of your mouth and singing/shouting to it - the one that returns the least back to your ears is the one to get. Colour be damned, but I luckily got black, needed for similar purposes a while back. Needless to say, whenever I now go by that store, clerks always wave if they see me.
    Regarding comfort/earpads - I have been browsing for memory foam earpads in required dimensions and unfortunately did not (yet) find any. I will keep trying. And yes, aftermarket earpads + shipping do seem to be financially out of proportion in this case, particularly for those of us who have been at the right place at the right time for that crazy Amazon deal. Personally I will wait for the HA-S500 to arrive and proceed from there on.
  11. cyloh
    Magnet + Basket, you're looking at roughly 5mm. 6mm tops.
    The felt I use is quite thin, at 1mm thickness. Got it from an art shop.
    I have a thicker felt piece, at 2mm thickness and also 2mm foam standing by. Just don't have the time to switch around and experiment all the possibilites yet.
    Guess what I did?
    Yeap, sealed both vents with tak. Changes the sound by quite a wide margin.
    OMG soundstage. Freaking soundstage. That said, the bass takes a step back and does not go as low anymore.
  12. TK277
    These look sweet. If I can, I'll buy a pair sometime in the upcoming months.
  13. analogsurviver
    Thank you for the reply. And dimensions, of course !
    More regarding felt/fabric some other time.
    Sealing those 2 vents should have the effect described. What you are doing is sealing the driver that can no longer use large volume of the cup, all that is available now is the volume of air "in the basket" and in effect you made a mini sealed monitor out of a vented floorstanding speaker. The price to be paid for this increase of bass are reflections/resonances/delays within the cup  that are perceived as loss of soundstage and might show up well on waterfall measurements. It is a tradeoff, if you want your bass and soundstage > big can a la Senn HD 800; it takes mighty good engineering to stop so large diaphragm misbehaving badly. Read - co$tly.
    We would all like to have our sports bulldozers with low fuel consumption, yet in real life...
    I think ( to think = not to know anything ) a compromise might be possible, yielding appreciably better soundstage without too severe a penalty in the bass. A fair amount of experimentations will be necessary, trial and error way. But result could at best approach the performance of big boys, do not expect this size of headphone to surpass a well implemented full size one, with the possible exception higher up in frequency range where nanotubes could indeed prove superiour diaphragm material. Given the sound is that good in stock form already and that due to reasonable cost HA-S 500 is affordable to large part of head-fiers, any improvement that is easy enough to do by majority of users is of course welcome. Just keep up good work and keep us all (and us who still wait for our pair) posted.
  14. nipit
    Any new review guys? And can anyone post a picture how headphones look on their head?
  15. jwong
    My ebay order got to LA yesterday, so I expect mine in the next day or two. My Amazon order hasn't shipped yet. And no, I have no good reason for ordering a second pair when I haven't heard the first yet! :)
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