hifiman ananda thread

Discussion in 'Headphones' started by sealand1, Jun 28, 2018.

  1. lm4der

    lm4der A very good sport - Friend

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    I ended up not keeping the Ananda. I will say that sonically I was happy with it, but for me the fit was awful. They just sat wrong on my head and ears. But I'm kind of sad, because I would have kept them for the sound.
     
  2. Ash1412

    Ash1412 Friend

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    Save up for Arya? A lot of people who are complaining about the new headband design didn't seem to have a problem with the old one.
     
  3. HIFIMAN

    HIFIMAN MOT: HiFiMan

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    So sorry for the bad experience. Could you please kindly provide your suggestions or some pics when you using it? Your advices will be most valuable for us.

    Thanks!

    HIFIMAN Team
     
  4. lm4der

    lm4der A very good sport - Friend

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    Hello, thanks for your question.

    For me, the main problem was that the headphones would not get short enough to fit right on my ears/head. I have sort of a short head, so with the headphones at their shortest, all the way retracted, they are about a quarter inch too long. Not much, but just enough that I couldn't get them to feel right - they hang down a little too low on my head.

    Also, on the Ananda that I had, the clamp force was really very light, too light I would say. I always had the feeling that the headphones were not sealing against my ears. Finally, I think they would be better if the earphone cup part could swivel. As it is, it's fixed in place by the headband and doesn't conform to one side of the head very well.

    Hopefully that feedback is helpful. It's a great sounding headphone, imho.
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2019
  5. Darren G

    Darren G Friend

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    I keep going back to my HEX V2 headphones. Yes they are a bit murky, but for the most part they are neutral, enjoyable to listen too, and do nothing horribly wrong. The are also the most comfortable HPs I've ever owned. Highly recommended.
     
  6. Jinxy245

    Jinxy245 Vegan Puss

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    I have a friend's HEX2 on loan right now, and yeah they really do a lot right & not too much wrong. IDK how similar they actually are sound wise to the Ananada & the Massdrop multi-X thingy ( they look fairly close measurements wise I guess) but I am tempted to jump on the next drop.
     
  7. Darren G

    Darren G Friend

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    Exactly, they simply do not do anything heinous wrong, A very listenable headphone.
     
  8. Baten

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    So I auditioned a lot of Hifimans in a hi-fi store. Sundara, Ananda, Arya, HE6LE. MrSpeakers AFC was there too.

    I was damn impressed with Ananda. It sounded so holographic, effortless and non-fatiguing, so much so that I ordered one in B-stock set to arrive next week. Another contender was the AFC, but it sounded less musical and more technical, but still quite good to me especially considering the competition here.

    I hope Ananda will sound as good in the quiet of my home than it did in the store! As untraditional as it may be, to me this feels like the most HD6XX-upgrade worthy headphone I've listened to so far (personally, ymmv)
     
  9. Darren G

    Darren G Friend

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    If it's the hex v2 repackaged, it is a smooth sounding headphone.
     
  10. Huhnkopf

    Huhnkopf Friend

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    in short:

    Choose Ananda for technical superiority (details, driver control, speed (attack, decay), better clarity, sharper staging, imaging) and leaner sounding more "linear" character, but accept a slightl peak in the treble which might be hot for a few people or maybe even a deal breaker.

    Choose HEX V2 for an "easier to handle" default tuning, overall more warmth, more low end presence, slightly thicker mids and smoother treble while being technically similarly competent (but definitely not equal) Generally still an outstanding headphone and imo an easy default choice if 700 Dollars upwards could be considered "easy".

    Hex V2 doesn't handle louder volumes as well as the Ananda though. Good for those that listen louder.

    slightly longer version:

    The Ananda is a bit different from the Edition X V2, sharing a new generation driver design which indeed brings a few improvements but comes in a slightly questionable housing/design. I personally don't have any problem with the comfort or how they fit on my large head. Some might however as the cups actually don't move at all (I believe the lack of swivel isn't such a big deal). If your head is tiny there are Dekoni Nuggets which you can use on the headband. People did with the HEX V2. I don't know why Hifiman did it, maybe they wanted to bring down costs but keep a superior sound?

    Sound:

    The Ananda is more controlled, tighter, cleaner/clearer (more clarity), overall more linear sounding and slightly more detailed whereas the HEX v2 is "thicker" overall (also in the mids), has more low end (in volume, not in extension, Ananda goes as deep) but less in detail and control.

    Mids of the Ananda are slightly forward just like the HEX V2 but due to its less thick overall (not thin) presentation and the superior cleanliness/clarity they have a more "realistic" tone about them. I'd consider the Ananda as the more tonally correct headphone, HOWEVER:

    There's a slight downside to Anandas technical superiority but more related to its tuning:
    The treble is less smooth (think the peak is somewhere around 7-8k) and might irritate a few people over time. Not in the same vein as the HD800 stock though (far from it) but if you like the Hex V2 for its treble presentation (and its slightly boosted low end in comparison) then these are not for you and you should not side/upgrade.

    I personally prefer these over the HeX V2 though as I'm not that sensitive, meaning I'm ok with technical superiority and the leaner (but better controlled and detailed) low end, more "neutral" approach over the more agreeable treble tuning of the Hex and its overall drift towards warmth. A good sacrifice for me. If I want smoother and more warm, bloomy, dreamy I have the HE-500, even when it loses out in a few instances against the HEX V2, which isn't that hard as the HE-500 also struggles against the HE-4, HE-5LE and of course the HE-6 here and there - yet to me edges out all of them in tonality, tuning, "magic factor" (which mostly lie in the mids).

    The Ananda is still no total or absolute replacement for the oldschool HE series which have a certain "realness" in their tonality even though it's cetainly rougher, less clean than the new generation. The Ananda improves upon the already improved Hex V2. The HEX V1 had what many people called plasticky timbre and a certain softness in its attacks.

    The Ananda is even better than the Hex V2 here (slightly, not hugely) but it's still not a HE-6.

    For those that don't want to mod, don't like the weight, the possible physical fragility, possible lack of driver replacements etc, the goddamn SMC connectors, the Hex V2 and the Ananda are a great choice over the old series and I'd also choose them over the LCD-2C, LCD-2, LCD-3, Verum, HE-4, HE-5LE, HE-500 etc. or even HD800 if was sane and only wanted one headphone and not carefully match (talking to you, HD 800) gear.

    And for those who care about staging/imaging, details and don't have or want the HE-6 these are a better default choice as well. Hex V2 and Ananda do gaming and movies superbly, better than the HE-6 as well as they sound larger, more open, project more depth and offer more width.

    Ananda does staging and imaging even better than the Hex, cues in the (I know it's exaggerated) "3D space" are easier to make out, traced and sharper drawn. It's certainly not due to its tuning alone but more founded in the improved drivers.

    gear: Lynx AES -> Gungnir Multibit -> V281 (balanced out)
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2019
  11. Baten

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    Definitely agree with you. Great review, thanks for writing this up.
     
  12. Sonorus

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    Great review.
    I suppose V281 was set at -12db?
    And since you own V281 at the end do you prefer HD800(sdr or not) or Ananda with this amp and Gungnir Multibit?

    (BTW - do you own them or are you part of the Ananda tour?)
     
  13. Huhnkopf

    Huhnkopf Friend

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    I'm not a good person to answer such a question as I haven't learned yet to keep only headphone, though I am only buying used since many years. Don't want to miss my Hifimans and my HD 800 as well. The Hifiman stole most of the show though.

    If you have the HD 800 already keep them (I recall you have the V280?), they are a great match with the V281 if you add the SDR and/or SBAF Mod https://www.superbestaudiofriends.org/index.php?threads/superbaf-hd800-mod-formerly-btamod.254/ (I only use SDR) and can live with the slight sharpness that is still left.

    My biggest gripes of the HD800 are the upper mids dip I experience (what the SBAF Mod fixes), the remains of the famous peak and the subbass from 20-40Hz or let's say the rolloff and lack of energy compared to something like the HE-6 which slam harder, more tactile and reach viscerally low.

    They are fine for me for a few hours of detailed liveliness, (more midbass) slam and great staging. Very special headphones. They are definitely not as easy and lovely on the ear like the HD650 (which I also own).

    Ananda is the easier default choice, easier to match with gear and does a lot of things right. Still, the HD800 is simply special and does a lot of things right too (and better: like details, staging) and scales higher, trades even with the Susvara in details and staging- the only headphone that would be able to replace all mine if it wasn't Hifiman QA and their absurd prices.

    Long rambling story short: Try to maximize the HD800 modwise and see if you can live with it. Very very hard and expensive to ugprade from there and no real sidegrades. Try the HE-500 or Hex V2 as a complimentary headphone if you really want another headphone.
     
  14. Sonorus

    Sonorus Facebook Friend

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    @Golmang
    Thank you a lot for your thoughts.
    Yes I already own V280 with HD800S and they are a great combo.
    As I am a classical music listener I like them very much and don't find them missing a lot.
    Anyway nothing is perfect especially when we are talking about headphones.
    I am participating at the Ananda loaner tour and I am waiting for my turn to come so I can hear them and post my impressions.
    Maybe if I like them I can own a pair as a second flavor or sometimes I am thinking of HD660s as a cheaper more easy going solution.
     
  15. Baten

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    just skipped my turn since I own one by now, so maybe that speeds up your turn :)
     
  16. Sonorus

    Sonorus Facebook Friend

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    Oh you are fast!
    What other headphones do you own?

    They notified me that I am next but no update til now.
     
  17. Huhnkopf

    Huhnkopf Friend

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    Is this an EU SBAF run? Nice. I didn't really look out for them as I believed most happen in the US.

    I bought mine used, they were actually ultra mint and only ran a few hours. Guy owned the Susvara as well though and the first HEK. I still suggest trying a HE-500 (with cskippy's velpad recommendation) as long as they can be found in great condition. Paid 220€ for mine. Yes, that's still a good sum of money but in the grand scheme of today's market a great choice. Your amp will drive them very well.
     
  18. Sonorus

    Sonorus Facebook Friend

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    Sorry for the misunderstanding but I am participating in the Headfi loaner tour.
     
  19. Baten

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    Yes I was also talking about the head-fi loaner, which in the case of hifiman extends internationally (ships from China).
    I got my Ananda also super mint from someone upgrading to an Arya ;)
     
  20. Sonorus

    Sonorus Facebook Friend

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    Great , and from what I am reading Ananda is a better overall value.
     

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