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The (new) HD800 Impressions Thread

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by valentinhogea, Feb 10, 2013.
  1. Rayzilla
    Nice! I guess if I were to do one, I would have to choose my hometown Blue and White in honour of my favourite NHL team, who just allowed a goal by Minnesota as I type. :frowning2:
    nephilim32 likes this.
  2. Deftone
    So its coming up to the 10th anniversary of HD800 and there hasn't been a new dynamic flagship since, the other "flavours" 800S & 820 dont count.

    Any whisperings of a new special headphone or flagship? surely its been long enough to warrant a HD900 by now...
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2018
    HoloSpice and ColtMrFire like this.
  3. ColtMrFire
    Sennheiser has pulled some weird moves lately. The 660 seems like an inferior mix of the 600/650 (doesn't scale as well, slightly lacking technicalities), made more for portables. The 820 is a closed back 800, which doesn't make alot of sense to me considering the 800 is famous for it's open and airy sound, and the 820 is supposed to be not as good.

    The company seems to be making alot of sidegrades rather than upgrades, so you have to wonder if they have something up their sleeve. They're becoming a bit of a joke to me lately.
  4. Deftone
    I agree its quite unusual, even IE80 and IE800 were altered to the S models.
  5. Mikey99
    The original was pretty much the best you could get at the time, and it is still competive years later, especially at their current price. Others have cought up or surpassed as one might expect, but is is still interesting to see that almost invariably people will compare to the HD800. I have largely moved on from them (at a price), but will still listen to and enjoy them on occasion.

    At the time they were in the top price bracket - I recall thinking how crazy expensive they were at the time, and I did hesitate. Now the market has developed such that there are one or two tiers of pricing above it where people (including me) seem willing to spend. So there is room for an “HD900”, and it’s would be interesting to see if they choose to enter this end of the market.

    Of course they have done the HE1 but that’s is a niche product. I wonder if they could do something like the old HE90.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2018
    ColtMrFire and Nik74 like this.
  6. ColtMrFire
    I feel like everyone is clamoring for some sort of 6x0/800 hybrid, that magic combo that combines the speed, extreme resolving power and roomy soundstage of the 800 and the warm smoothness and non fatigue of the 6x0 series. And that seems to be what the Focal Clears are (minus the soundstage) at least from what I've read.

    If Sennheiser has something up their sleeve they're going to have to do better than that. But it's possible we've reached peak HP technology... I mean these things can only be so resolving and smooth until there is nowhere left to go. Unless you start getting into HE-1 tech at consumer prices, but that would cannibalize that market....
    HoloSpice and FLTWS like this.
  7. Nik74
    I think the Clear is a completely different bag of tricks. Doesn't remind me of 650 at all. Yes they are quite resolving but they don't have that midrange magic, in my opinion always...
    Deftone likes this.
  8. zakazak
    Anyone knows how the Burson Soloist SL Mk2 pairs with the HD800?

    Or maybe someone can recommend another DAC + AMP for max. 1500€? The Soloist SL is ~350-470€. Would need a decent DAC for it as well (recommendations?).
  9. ColtMrFire
    I mean if you have a 1500 budget, you're better off with a TOTL amp, which is what the HD800 craves. Never heard the soloist, but from everything I've read it is a decidedly mid-fi amp. You could look for a used Torpedo 3 or Eddie Current Black Widow both usually under $1K, and just get the Modi multibit DAC which is very competitive with TOTL DACs. Just my recommendation but I've heard alot of mid-fi amps and the 800 just goes to a whole different level with TOTL components.
  10. zakazak
    What is TOTL? :frowning2:

    I wouldnt mind if DAC+Amp would cost less than 1500€ :p I can get the Soloist pretty cheap right now though.
    Tube sounds and looks interesting I think I dont want to go tube.
  11. ColtMrFire
    Top Of The Line (summit-fi), basically rising above the mediocre (comparatively) and into the exceptional. Not that mid-fi sounds bad, not at all, alot of it sounds great, especially the Schiit stuff. And probably the Soloist. But it's a bit like the difference between a Mustang and a Ferrari. The former is an excellent car. That latter is just in a different class entirely and performs at a higher level.

    In my experience the 800 sounds great from certain mid-fi amps. But it doesn't really show it's true colors until it's paired with more exceptional gear. The headphone is a chameleon and scales like mad. It is a TOTL headphone, so obviously pairs best with TOTL amps.

    Anyway these are just my thoughts.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2018
  12. omniweltall
    But the secret in audio is that differences in mustangs and ferraris are not as pronouced. A lot of mid-fi gears sound better than summit-fi. People tend to be biased toward expensive gears.
  13. ColtMrFire
    Any summit fi that sounds worse than mid fi is not true summit fi. I'm talking about gear that actually performs.

    You're right that there are alot of imposters. Alot of snakeoil. That's why it's better to get informed opinions and not hype.

    And yes, difference can be exaggerated, but generally really good gear is gonna perform better with headphones that actually scale.

    The 800 is great in that it will not lie to you about how good (or not) your chain is. Torpedo 3 and Black Widow are definitely not imposters. Ragnarok is also TOTL but just barely. T3 I feel is better.

    Ultimately if you want the best for the 800, no shortcuts.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2018
    omniweltall likes this.
  14. nephilim32
    You know something fellas .I use the Burson Soloist with my chord Qutest DAC set at 3V RMS and that is a really damn good pairing for the HD 800 C's . Not much better that you can get for that price and performance . Only different . I doubt buying a Pass labs HPA 1 or Bakoon HPA 21 would tighten up my sound chain.
    DavidA likes this.
  15. zakazak
    Hmm its too bad that not many have the Soloist SL. There are nearly no comparisons to other amps making me wonder if maybe other stuff for the same price might be just as good :/

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