Is an HD 800 (S?) still worth buying?

Discussion in 'Advice Threads' started by abalone, Jan 21, 2024.

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  1. abalone

    abalone New

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    I ended up following your advice guys!

    Couldn't upload a picture, oddly enough... Here's one

    [​IMG]
    So far I really enjoy it. It was a bit underwhelming at first, coming from the Arya. Now I spend a much larger portion of my time using the HD800. It's a much more audiophile product to my ears, more realistic, much less fatiguing, but it lacks some of the bass, slam and fun factor of the Arya. Except for electronic music, I'd much rather using the HD800.

    Looking forward to try the Maxx mods, curious if anyone had good experiences with it. In any case, the HD800 is much less "flawed" to me than the Arya is, especially regarding treble.

    Really happy I followed your opinions.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2024
  2. Lyander

    Lyander Official SBAF Equitable Empathizer

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    Not sure if the mod's gone through more iterations since, but: https://www.superbestaudiofriends.org/index.php?threads/hd800-s-ultimate-mod.6217/

    It basically makes the Senns far more v-shaped/amazingly bright, at least as far as the version here goes. If you're a fan of that sorta sound then yeah go for it, but I feel like you'd need an amazingly dark, not even warm, upstream just to make it inoffensive to most.
     
  3. Huhnkopf

    Huhnkopf Friend

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    Instead of wasting your time with the MaXxXxXxXxX Ultimate selfjerkoff mod have your 800 modded by @ext1 and enjoy a consistent yet tailored superior experience.
     
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  4. abalone

    abalone New

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    I'd really love to, especially after reading the previous links you sent me... As of now, it's a bit outside my budget though!
     
  5. Lyander

    Lyander Official SBAF Equitable Empathizer

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    Jupiter does spectacular work and his mods are very much beloved for a reason, but yes they are not inexpensive.

    For whatever it's worth I have never heard a HiFiMAN EF400 but I'm unsure as to whether it flatters the HD800. Do the Sennheisers sound any better out of the balanced out? Looks like you're running it single-ended at the moment and I'm unsure whether that gives the amp its best shot at driving the Sennheisers well.

    As for embedding images:
    [​IMG]

    You could click the "IMAGE" button here and copy the image URL, not the album URL, and paste that into the box that pops up:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2024
  6. Huhnkopf

    Huhnkopf Friend

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    Yes, the JAR mods aren't cheap but they aren't a lucrative service either. The amount of hand work he puts in is massive. The cleansing of used headphones alone takes a few hours. No headphone is received and worked on without a proper baseline.
    Some headphones require quite a bit more work than a revision of the same model. i.e. the HD 600 Blackscreen vs latest versions (not counting the cleaning here).

    From my perspective, as someone who's just a regular worker and who knows what technicians can receive for working on gear (per hour), it's actually not really worth it at all imo, unless you can insert some automization but that's very unlikely. It would also require absurdly higher volumes to drop down the print costs. Not very likely.

    I think once this guy is out of his university and starting his main job it will be a rare experience to have these made.
    In the end it will always just remain a labour of love, which is the essence of his work.

    Now if you want to know if a JAR800 is worth it, I can only say yes as someone who owns other rather "similar" headphones in that price range, e.g. the HE1000SE. Even now as it "only" costs 2k, I would always choose a JAR800. f**k subbass if you can't trade blows till the end.
     
  7. Ardacer

    Ardacer Friend

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    I'm really sorry I sold mine.
     
  8. abalone

    abalone New

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    Thanks! Figured out now.

    I bought it for my Arya, for which it is a good match (maybe even purpose built?). The DAC section is really great for the price, especially as it's now half price on the hifiman website. I'm using the 4.4mm connector, so balanced.

    I'll have the occasion to try out the HD800 of a friend's setup, he has multiple high end dacs and a Shortest Way 51+.

    No doubt! I fully agree with your comment. I had some projects of mine, non audio related, and yeah, the time/skill investment made me relativise seemingly expensive options. Doesn't take away budget from the equation though. Hopefully in a year or two.

    Did find the HE1000SE to be a big upgrade over the Arya Stealth? I've seen mixed reports... No doubt the JAR800 is superior, would love to hear it for myself some day. I saw some being sold online not too long ago.
     
  9. Tchoupitoulas

    Tchoupitoulas Friend

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    FWIW, and it's a personal preference issue, but I didn't like the HD 800 from the SW51+. It closed in and collapsed the headstage, robbing the headphones of one of their singular qualities. It's well worth a listen as this might not be an issue for you. But for an affordable tube amp that's good with the HD 800, if you don't mind a bit of looseness in the bass, keep an eye out for a ZDT Jr (with the white dot on the rear, indicating that Massdrop fixed that unit's hum issue - it was a common problem with those amps that got fixed).
     

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