The HD800 & HD800S thread

Discussion in 'Headphones' started by sorrodje, Oct 11, 2015.

  1. JoelT

    JoelT Friend

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    I own both and like both (modded - dislike the HE-6's etched treble stock). HE-6 needs the right amplification and the right mods to make it agreeable, but won't scale like the HD800 in terms of resolving ability no matter what you do to it. That said, with the right pieces, the HE-6 can ofter a visceral listening experience that I have yet to hear from the HD800. The degree to which that matters will depend on the listener, their musical preferences, etc. I paid about $900 for my HE-6, which was sold as an "open box" despite looking brand new. I felt it was a fair price relative to other planars.
     
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  2. Ice-man

    Ice-man Friend

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    I must report that the GMB>mjo2 with NOS tubes is pretty fucking sweet with the hd800. I hated the original mjo with the hd800 but the mjo2 adds some real meat to the bone on the 800. So far, lovin' it. :punk:
     
  3. ald0s

    ald0s Acquaintance

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    Has anyone tried the cardas clear HD800 cable? I currently just have a stock cable and its great but one has come up for a bargain price ($250) and since its XLR and i have a Black Widow in my future with the ability to use XLR...... well I'm thinking about it. Ive actually never used anything but stock cables so have no opinion on this topic. Ive read a bit of the science and it seems like snake oil.

    Better to ask my new SBAF.
     
  4. Judeus

    Judeus Facebook Friend

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    When I listen to a planar I don't expect resolving power and soundstage. I expect tight bass and fast transients. If I wanted the latter i'd listen to a dynamic (hd800)

    only planar to pull it offthe latter would be like the he1k?
     
  5. sorrodje

    sorrodje Carla Bruni's other lover - Friend

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    I'd personaly put the HE-6 on par in value. Those two headphones are probably the two most fairly priced of all TOTL headphones and it would probably be my primary choice If I had to buy an ortho. I'd pick it easily over the HE1K or any Audeze. Never heard the Code X.
     
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  6. Jokko

    Jokko Friend

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    What about the HE-560?
     
  7. sorrodje

    sorrodje Carla Bruni's other lover - Friend

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    Can't really talk about that one. heard once too briefly.
     
  8. Judeus

    Judeus Facebook Friend

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    he560 is a really nice headphone imo, the he-6 is better if you have the amp to power it, but the he560 is no slouch
     
  9. paranoidroid

    paranoidroid Friend

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    The HE560 sounds much more polite than the HE6. I think it's a good value as well especially compared to the recent crop of new headphones - but doesn't have the technicalities of the HD800. The HE6 is better all around at the expense of worse ergonomics and weight.
     
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  10. aufmerksam

    aufmerksam Friend

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    I wouldn't put the 560 up there in terms of value. I compared the HE560 head to head with the HD800 after I got the latter. I really liked the 560, and paid full msrp of $899 for them, but they were nowhere near the HD800 in terms of performance. Even in bass, the 800 was much more realistic and had better impact to me. The recent sales and lower street pricing of the 560 ($600-$800 depending on circumstance) seems more realisitc, but still a little high to be honest. My perception on this point is exaggerated by the fact that you can get HD800 new for close to $1000 if you are patient for a good sale (or open box I suppose).
     
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  11. dark_energy

    dark_energy Friend

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    Imo, HE-6 has certain advantages to HD800. The bass is more impactful at the lowest frequencies due to more neutral FR at this end of the spectrum. HE-6 has this smoothness from bass to mids(arguably all over) that i would say is not lack of detail. Just less air than HD800 and in some instances more natural. Others, probably too smooth/euphonic. Missings that grip the HD800 has.

    Why i am bringing up this bass thing anyway, is that i find it surprising how many instruments and sounds (drums, el. guitars, synths) have significant info at these lower frequencies. Lots of bass guitars have these lower freq. components. You know, that feeling when an impact Does contact with the ground.

    HE-6 for me would be about the same value, if it had Sennheiser build quality.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015
  12. johnjen

    johnjen Doesn’t want to be here but keeps posting anyways

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    I've had the chance to compare the 800's to the LCD-X and the HE1k's on my system for a prolonged period of time.
    The bass out of the 800's is more detailed, has as much if not more impact, but the biggest difference is in the ability to hear the actual notes of the bass.

    Neither of the planars bass sounded like a musical note, when compared to the 800's.
    The tonality is obscured so the bass is more of a thud or whump instead of the actual low frequency tone.
    800's also go subsonic, with authority.

    I can feel the compression in my chest.
    I have no idea how or why this is so, and it isn't just me as several others have independently told me this as well.
    My WAG is my mind 'makes it so', but how or the specifics that leads to this experience would be pure speculation, even if I were to try to explain it.

    But in order to achieve this degree of low freq response, EQ via DSP is required and the Ref 3 plugin helps with this in a big way.

    JJ
     
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  13. JoelT

    JoelT Friend

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    What are you using for upstream gear with the HD800 (apologies if you've already mentioned it)? I wasn't personally happy with the HD800's bass until I moved from SS to tubes. Slightly lacking extension is my only gripe with the HD800's bass response - not a deal breaker by any stretch, but I find it noticible when jumping from my HE-6 to the HD800.
     
  14. Bill-P

    Bill-P Level 42 Mad Wizard

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    I think you're lacking extension because you're using a tube amp, JoeIT.

    I don't find the extension of the HD800's bass lacking at all. If anything, the only "fault" I can identify is a lack of body to the lower region as a whole with certain recordings. There is a bit of body when called for, but it's typically kinda transparent/see-through out of many amps I have tried the headphone with.
     
  15. JoelT

    JoelT Friend

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    I don't. Same result with my Rag, which has excellent bass extension. The tube amp (well tubed Glenn OTL w/ Yggdrasil) does slightly better to my ear, as odd as that sounds - probably due to just having a bit more body/presence.

    Regardless, I'm not sure what you mean. Are your measurements coming up completely linear? I thought most measurements show roll-off.

    http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/SennheiserHD800.pdf

    Hold on...Are we actually talking about the same thing? I find exactly what you're describing to be the result of the low bass roll-off. It's not bad at all, but it's there to my ear at least - with every amp I've ever tried them with.
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2015
  16. Bill-P

    Bill-P Level 42 Mad Wizard

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    Yeah. My measurements show that the HD800's drop off at 20Hz is only about 2.5dB, which is actually better than some orthos on the same measurement rig (HE-560 comes to mind here). Seems like Tyll's measurements would agree with mine:
    http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/SennheiserHD800.pdf

    I'm not one to flaunt the "oh, measurements show that, so it must be that!" card, of course, so I do believe that maybe you're just not hearing it subjectively.

    Source, maybe? I'm using the Schiit Gungnir Multibit. I do know that if I were to try the HD800 out of my Macbook (still with an amp), there is a noticeable roll-off to sub bass as well.

    Edit: and on that note, Tyll measured the HE-560 as flat on his rig, and... I didn't. So who knows? Maybe fit also plays into it.
     
  17. johnjen

    johnjen Doesn’t want to be here but keeps posting anyways

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    I have a PWD mkI-II feeding The Rok amp.
    But I've paid a lot of attention, as in tweaked, the ac power that feeds my system, and my 800's are modded as well.
    And adding bass boost to achieve a 'flatter' response from 15Hz up was the kicker.

    JJ
     
  18. JoelT

    JoelT Friend

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    Source isn't an issue - using Yggdrasil.

    I would absolutely agree that many ortho's don't do as well. My HE-6 needed to have the pads hermetically sealed and the driver sealed in to the chamber before it really performed well. I suspect the the 560 suffers the same problem. In any case, I'm not trying to make a mountain out of a mole hill. It's just something I hear/notice.

    Very good idea. I'll try some EQ where the roll-off takes place.
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2015
  19. paranoidroid

    paranoidroid Friend

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    Having tested stock HD800 and HE560 side by side, the HE560 have the very clear advantage in bass extension. Very noticeable in hip hop. Also noticeable is the collapse of the sound stage from HD800 to HE560.
     
  20. sorrodje

    sorrodje Carla Bruni's other lover - Friend

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    I spent a huge amount of time to compare HD800, HE1k and HE-6 from an audioGD HE-9 + Totaldac combo during HEK beta period and after. both planars offer undoubtly better bass extension. IMO the HE1K offer more-than-neutral subs and I hear it as a colouration. HE-6 Subs are almost perfect because they're there but don't overwhelm the whole range. HD800 lacks a bit of subs compared to HE-6 but it's not that obvious during listening (I listen ot a lot of Electronic music though) . For me, overally HE-6 bass are cleaner , faster with more slam but slightly "one note" . HD800 bass are warmer maybe a bit lest precise and delineated but more textured with and more "bouncy" nature (mid bass hump helps) . Technically the HE-6 is maybe superior in this area but for the music I listen to , I enjoy both.

    When I compared, my HD800 was stock and the HE-6 was ligtly modded (read damping material removed) with velours pads.

    Now I have the theta DS pro GN Va in my system and a cheap amp (still waiting my Stratus) and this one sounds so clean and articulate that it seems it added a discrete but real sub in my HD800. it seems I can dig deeper in the bass . Quality definitely matters here.
     
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