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I have only about an hour on these cans so far (got them from the last drop). I am working on reviewing them. I must say though that once again, as it is with almost all headphones with the exception of the Status Audio CB1, that what we have here is over promise and under deliver. These are touted everywhere as being the same as the HD650, this is correct, they are in every way except the color of the plastic. They are also touted as "audiophile grade" headphones, however, in my opinion they are far from it. I'm not a bass head, but I like it to be there with articulation and proper impact and depth. It is not on these cans so far. There is almost no bass extension either. Granted they have more than the HD600s, but are still lacking in the essential amount. Mids and highs are great though, I must say. Unfortunately, they are also my most uncomfortable cans. I have an average size head, not big and not small and the clamping force of these is crushing. It surprises me because my HD518s are my most comfy headphones and I was expecting the same. Also, I do not dig the dual cable connects. The split is too short/narrow and it is a lynching waiting to happen. What disadvantage is there to using the 3.5mm jack on one side like everyone else?
Like I said, I only have an hour on these so far and I at least hope they open up as I put more time on them. I wonder about the comfort though, if that will also improve?
You cant try to bend the metal bands. There is a video on it if you want to google it. Other than that, just wearing them for a while will losen them up alot.
Ah, I don't know why I did not just do that. I'll bend the bands a tiny bit, that should do it. Next, I will have to work on getting them to sound good, which is a much larger fish. Although, again, time and use may contribute positively to that too.
What are you using to drive them?
I have a JDS Labs O2, Schiit Magni and also a Marnatz CD5004 and ND8006 both with discrete headphone amps. All drive them, but the JDS seems to take the most effort compared to the rest.
What disadvantage is there to using the 3.5mm jack on one side like everyone else?
Putting it on one side means you have to somehow get the signal to the other side (through the headband). Depending on the headband type, you might actually have a couple of wires very loosely or very tightly stretched (when you extend or retract the headband). There's potential for these wires to snag and tug the terminals without realizing it. Some styles like the K7xx which have bands over the head always at a specific length so those won't have this issue. So.... in short it opens headband design possibilities and is a simple solution.
2ndly (from a consumer perspective), audio enthusiast won't like the non-symmetrical (not equal length) conductors/cables. The time the signal takes (at the speed of light) and impedance (which is very negligible) is different for the left ear and right ear. Simply put, not using the Y cable degrades audio quality and visually less pleasing.
Maybe more is going on but that's what I came up with a while back. Hopefully it's more of a visual preference than audio preference to desire connections on both side. For manufactures, it's a simpler solution that solves some other potential problems.
With that said, I prefer the 1 sided connections as long as it's working-the right ear seems to be the driver that fails on me first (the side the cable doesn't connect to). Far easier to move the cable off to the side and not bother me using only a 1 side connection while the Y cables constantly bother me.
Far as the bass goes, I do use an equalizer to bump it up a bit. However, you can't get lots more bass doing that method without sacrificing clarity. Because of this, I do prefer different headphones for Netflix/movies/gaming. The search for the perfect headphone continues.
I have a Senn 558 (which i think is very similar just the older version of 598 open back). 558 certainly had more punchy bass but everything sounded fuzzier. Without biasing my brother (I didn't tell him anything about the headphones who knows nothing about the headphone world), was very quickly able to hear that same fuzzy sound difference. What separates 6xx from other high end headphones (which also have superb clarity) is harder for me to hear. The $500 vs $200 price difference is mostly marketing and maximizing profits. The 650's don't cost $300 more to make...
Michael, thanks for your well thought explanation.
Yes, in my experience most audio enthusiasts or audiophiles are either ignorant of certain scientific aspects such as physics or just plain prefer to buy into pseudoscience rather than applied science. I have exploded a few heads or caused a few fits bringing up the slightest point of applied science to these folk. Honestly, they really shouldn't have issue with it as it could save them money and trouble, but to each their own.
Anyway, I think most headphone makes account successfully for one sided connections at least these days. As for a difference in sound quality, if there really is, it is undetectable by the human ear and human mind, golden or not. If it is really just "looks" as I believe it to be, that's fine, but they could have at least in the case of the HD6xx made the split larger so you don't feel like you are wearing a choker.
Yeah, I am not sure about what to do about the bass if it doesn't improve over time. The mids and highs on the HD6xx are fantastic and I don't want to sacrifice that at least not by more than a negligible amount.
Yes, my 518s have way too much bass to them and I think even if I hooked up an EQ and dialed the bass back on those it would make more of a mess than solve a problem. So I am starting to think EQ is not the answer necessarily.
I'm wondering if the 598s are the sweet spot, but I won't know, because I am not going to buy another pair of headphones.
I think one big problem in headphone world (and pretty much the whole audio world) is too much overpromise and under deliver.
Seeing how headphones are essentially speakers and mechanical, we will see how the 6xx pans out over time.
Yeah, I forgot to say I also had to stretch them out a couple times. I slowly increased the # of books/magazines wedged between the ear cups for like 24 hours until it was still snug but all the pain went away. A slow process but I didn't want to permanently accidentally over stretch them
Ah, not that I would have exceeded anything that gave any unease, but I am glad you mentioned this and I will use the idea, good safe way to do it.
I would definitely most not agree that sub bass is non existent, it is there but somewhat weak, and with any dynamic headphone, do not expect miracles at 20Hz without relatively high THD.
HD650 also have too much bass Around 150 Hz, which most actually like. I should note that in my experience people usually get disappointed when they hear truly flat system and complain about lack of bass. While HD650 does not match Harman Target curve it is diffuse field headphone with exceptionally smooth response that very few(even ultra high end headphones do).
Your personal preferences may vary.
PS. Also as a fellow college skeptic, I am rather disappointed to see a lot of people invoking science to try and prove their personal beliefs or value systems. Don't turn science into religion.
Please, oh wise skpetic1, share with us all your scientific knowledge about audio gear!