1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.

    Dismiss Notice

The (new) HD800 Impressions Thread

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by valentinhogea, Feb 10, 2013.
  1. Rayzilla
    I'm going to ask this on the Master 9 thread but has anyone had any experience pairing the HD800S with the Master 9? I am now listening to the HD800 with the Master 9, which I have done before but for the first time I am using High gain on it. I rarely use the High gain because I am afraid of getting to adjusted to wanting it all of the time. Sounds strange but it is kind of like how I try not to add too much spice into my food because the rest of my family cannot eat spicy so if I start getting too used to eating spicy flavour, I will not enjoy the food as much when I eat with my family, which is more important to me.

    Just wondering if I should go for an HD800S since I need a replacement cable for my HD800 anyway and the HD800S comes with two cables. The rubber coating on the cable about 2-3 inches down from the connection to the HP has opened and the wire itself is not exposed. Once in a while the sound goes out on that side because of this.
  2. omniweltall
    Tried Master 9 with hd800 last year. This is what I remember.

    Didnt like the tonality with this pairing. Sounded thin (same feeling with cma600i). But it sounds very clear and smooth. It can bring out the bass quality and quantity of the hd800. Soundstage was real wide, but flat. Imaging was really good. Treble was smooth but not to my preference with hd800. Perhaps hd650 would be great with this amp.

    I always recommend a tube amp for hd800.
  3. Rayzilla
    Your description seemed to match more with what I experienced with the setting on Low Gain. And the same reason why my listening sessions with the pairing were far and few between. But now with the setting at High Gain, which I tend not to do with any amp, it is quite a different experience. Much better and more body.
  4. omniweltall
    You're right. I remember now it was on low gain. I dare not touch the high gain, as the owner said the unit had increased gain.
  5. ColtMrFire
    Where did you buy this headphone? If the cable is broken and came that way, you're owed a replacement.
  6. Rayzilla
    I have had it for a few years now so I don't think I would be able to make any warranty claim on it. It is the rubber cover part at the part where the cable splits apart and just a little before it connects to the headphone. I guess the plastic/rubber cover dries up and then prone to cracking? Then the wire inside gets exposed.
  7. Rayzilla
    The difference between High and Low gain is quite significant in terms of impact at the lower end and all around thickness of sound. The HD800 does sound light without the High Gain on (with the Hugo).
  8. omniweltall
    Does the high-gain have same output impedance with low-gain?

    The Hugo 1 does have a thin sound. That is why I never liked it.
  9. ColtMrFire
    I can confirm the 800 is best with tubes. I've owned both ss and tube amps with this headphone and tubes were always better at maximizing the HPs strengthens (holographic staging, plankton, microdynamics, warmth, etc) and diminishing it's weaknesses (brightness, sterility, thinness, etc)

    Torpedo 3 is one of the best tube amps under $1K for this headphone bar none (besting or equaling tube amps twice it's price) If you can find one used consider yourself lucky. The newly released T4 is supposed to be even better but it's twice as expensive.

    A much cheaper but very good option is Valhalla 2 with the 6CG7 tubes to remove the inherent haziness of the amp and add needed punch. Lyr 3 is supposed to be very good for it as well but I haven't heard that amp.
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2018
    Rayzilla and omniweltall like this.
  10. Rayzilla
    I am getting a DIY cable made for the HD800 with a balanced 4.4 connection so that I can pair it with my DX200 with either AMP4 or AMP8. When I tried it with AMP7 single ended, it sounded pretty good already. It did not sound thin.

    I'll have to check the specs on the M9 to answer your question but I don't have the time right now.
    omniweltall likes this.
  11. ruthieandjohn
    The HD800 is SUCH a classic! Over nine years old, and it STILL is widely acknowledged as one of the best and even, according to many, able to outstrip its successor, the HD800S, in certain areas. Has there been any other headphone so long lived at the summit? Perhaps a Beyer?
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2018
    Mikey99 and ColtMrFire like this.
  12. ColtMrFire
    People like to crap on the 800 because they say it's "sterile", has a treble peak, bass light, etc. The great thing about the HP is it's neutrality, so that you can dial in the flavors your want with upstream gear. I've heard this headphone sound warm, bassy, full, etc. It just depends on the amp/tubes/DAC, even cables have a major effect. It's a chameleon and when paired with the right amp it's audio Nirvana. I've never really had the euphonic experiences I've had with the 800 with any other headphone. With well mastered classical music it's just orgasmic.

    Having the right amp is key though. There aren't many amps under a $1K that can really show you what it's made of. I feel very lucky to have the T3.
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2018
    FLTWS, omniweltall and Nik74 like this.
  13. ruthieandjohn
    I love mine with the Sennheiser HDVD800 DAC/amp!
  14. Rayzilla
    Aren't you the one with the very nice red and black paint job on both the HD800 and the HDVD800? Show us again. :)
  15. ruthieandjohn
    Indeed I am.. your wish, my command!


Share This Page