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I currently have an LG V20 and I'm planning to drive the 4xx's from this, would this be enough?
I am planning to buy an external dac/amp in the future, what can you gents suggest in a 200$ below price point?
The trouble I keep having with the V20 is that they don't actually publish and of the relevant specs for the audio output. In general, I would not believe that a phone could drive these well enough for the pair to be worthwhile. You're better off spending the equivalent amount on some nice sensitive, low impedance IEMs. If phones had amps capable of driving these the battery would not last long doing so, so I'm going to guess that it's not enough. They really do need a desktop amp. To fully drive these you really need something that can put 8V at >200mA through them and there's even plenty of desktop headphone amps that can't do that.
I suggest the O2+whatever DAC you like to drive it with for HE4xx. That should fit your budget well.
I have an LG V20, and the highest impedance headphone I've driven from it is the AKG k7xx (62 ohms). The highest volume I go up to is 50/75. They sound perfectly fine, so the 4xx should be the same. A warning however, with planars it could vary. I've tried the Audeze Sine and EL-8 closed on my V20 as well. For some reason, they just require more power than what their impedance says they do. Because of this, they ALMOST got loud enough for me. With my isine 10 however, it runs perfectly fine (highest volume for me being 45/75).
That's because you're only looking at impedance and not sensitivity/efficiency, or any of the math involved with determining whether they are actually being driven adequately or not.
HE4xx are quite efficient for planar cans, but they are still current hogs. Phones typically can't supply the current they need and since LG won't publish their output specs, you can only guess. Given that battery life would kill sales on their device as much as if not more than terrible audio quality, it's a much safer guess that they put a weak output amp in there.
Ah, I see. Thanks for clearing that up! So I should generally avoid planars on my v20?
I certainly don't know that there isn't a planar driver can out there that is efficient enough to work with a phone, but I have my doubts.
In the end though: If you like the way it sounds, go with it. I just recommend that if you're looking for better audio from a phone, you get yourself some nice sensitive/low impedance IEMs rather than looking at full sized cans. You'll probably be happier with the pairing.
Thanks man. I guess i have to wait for my pair and see (or hear). In the meantime ill check that o2. Im also looking at some schiit offerings
I like Schiit. They make some good Schiit. I have a stack 2 Uber rn. Happy enough with it.
Cheers, rather than sitting around making quasi-educated guesses, your question compelled me to give it a shot. (I was reading these comments while listening to my 4xx's via my headphone amp with my v20 was sitting next to me.) Quite honestly - the 4xx sound quite good on the v20. Actually, very good. A pleasant surprise; I really did not expect they would (so much so that it had not even occurred to me give it a try until I read your question). In fact, I can't imagine most anyone would be disappointed with the sound coming out of the v20 -it's rich and full and clear. Go for it. If you get the headphone amp bug give it shot down the road! For suggestions in the $200 range, I'm loving the 4xx on my $199 darkvoice 336 that I also picked up here on massdrop. But, as I say, the v20's play very nicely with these cans.
Nice! Do you recommend the dark voice, or go for a Valhalla 2?
Honestly, I have no idea; I've never listened to the Valhalla 2, though many folks rave about it; hard to imagine you could go wrong with it. Really, this stuff is all guess-work until you actually hear it, but schiit has a superb reputation. On the other hand, the darkvoice lists for about $150 less, sounds darn nice to my ears, and gives you the extra $$ to sink into additional headphones/headphone quality. You kinda can't go wrong either way. I personally like to sample a lot of different equipment b/c I like the variety and listening/understanding sound differences across equipment and technologies. I've built my system to have 3 headphone amps; right now I have a pure transistor-based amp (Sony uda-1, which is also my dac, amp, and pre), a pure tube-based amp (darkvoice, which also has pre-out), and a hybrid amp (the cavalli hybrid from massdrop; expected w/i the next month or two). I have a switching setup allowing me to pipe sound to any amp from any source. Then I have a bunch of headphones to play with, several from massdrop (he4xx, k7xx, hd6xx). The he4xx are the first pair of planar magnetic's I've owned and I'm still sorting out exactly where I think they excel and where I prefer other headphones (so far, I love them with jazz and classical; not sure about other genre's yet, listening to chill/dub/trance right now)
Tnx a lot man thats very informative. Knowing the v20 can the very least drive the 4xx is a relief. Im not the kind to go full blast or near loud when listening anyway.
Those darkvoice look sick. I'll research more on those tube types.
Good to know u like some schiit too. Hope to get some cheap 2ndhand ones if ever O decide on them
I'm running my hd6xx's on my V10 and they are going very nicely at about 50%. Not sure how relevant that is just sort of throwing it out there.
The truth is yes the phone has move than enough power to power the headphones. BUT! It's not as simple as plugging in the headphones. As you know the impedance is a bit missleading and need more power than what you would think. Because of this if you just plug in you won't be in "high impedance mode". So here are the workarounds I know of. And, yes I own both the V20 (H918) and the HE4XX.
Method 1: The Root Method. (Method I use and it is free)
Root you phone and get ViPER4Android XiHifi for one. Then there are also apps to turn off and on "high impedance mode" or you can leave it on 24/7.
Method 2: The Adapter Method. (Costs money)
Go out and buy a Low to High Impedance Adapter. This method costs money but you don't have to Root your device.
Yes, but that's what I turn Hi-Fi DAC on for, it's for headphones 50-600 ohms. Supposedly it auto adjusts for whatever impedance I've just plugged in and the fact that the same volume sounds the same whether it's my IEM or my Senn I can believe that.
my v30 barely drives my set that i just got ....
Hi-Fi DAC isn't "high impedance mode" there is no stock high impedance mode like that. High impedance mode is a setting in the background you can't not toggle with stock settings. The HE4XX does not have a high enough impedance to turn on high impedance mode. I set mine to run 24/7 with WETA Rom. I used to have an app that toggled high impedance mode but I just set it to be on 24/7 out of convenience. With high impedance mode on I can turn it to past the levels of listening comfort. With the Hi-Fi DAC on and high impedance mode off I can not turn it up that loud. This is the same for the V10, V20, and V30. All 3 you can root turn on "high impedance mode" or buy a Low to High Impedance Adapter. You can turn on Hi-Fi DAC and still use headphones under 50Ω. You are doing just that now, the HE4XX have an Impedance of 35Ω.
Hmm, I don't know. It was super loud, like I couldn't turn it up all the way loud. But then I restarted my phone and at full volume it's not even as loud as it just was at 50. So, maybe you're right and my phone bugged out on me.
Cool, the again this is meaningless and has nothing to do with "high impedance mode". That is just one of 4 DACs that are on this phone. I can turn off Hi-Fi DAC and leave on high impedance mode and blast them way louder than you can with Hi-Fi DAC on. Again, you can turn on Hi-Fi DAC and still use headphones under 50Ω. You are doing just that now, the HE4XX have an Impedance of 35Ω.
Exactly! Which is what I do just because it makes them sound a lot better either way. But I'm running the hd6xx not the 4xx so my headphones are 300Ω.
Oh that makes sense then High impedance mode would be turned on in your case. I am specifically talking about the HE4XX
Yea, that's why I had mentioned I was just throwing out there that these at 300ohm can get super loud and so I didn't see why something with 35ohm and next gen phone should be any different. Other than louder. Also, I replugged in my headphones and they're now crazy loud again.
The HE4XX and the K7XX have an impedance that are both bit missleading. Both of them are harder to drive than what their impedance suggests especially the HE4XX. I would say my HE4XX are harder to drive then my HD6XX.
Yea, I could see that. I've been wanting to try a pair of planar, maybe now I'm going to have to get a set of 4xx's.
It's more than worth it. After switching back and forth to the HD6XX and the HE4XX it makes me realize even more how lacking the HD6XX/650's upper end is. Also, the HE4XX wipes the floor with the HD6XX when it comes to transparency. The HE4XX are not super bass heavy but have damn have damn good low end extension. I would say they hit a little less harder than my HD6XX but not by much. I quite enjoy the HE4XX and think they are the one of the beast deals in all of headphones if not the best headphone deal anywhere.
Alright, well thanks. I'll have to try them now. But I must say these hd6xx's sound freaking amazing. I've never had anything sound so good. Only my car stereo comes close and that was like $1300+.
I have come to learn I like a good high end. Too much bass has the tendency to rob from other frequencies. A lack of heavy bass seams to be a MD theme besides the TH-X00 which hit hard. The K7XX, HD6XX, and the HE4XX all don't have too much bass but it's the HE4XX low end extension that sets them apart. It's hard to say where I rank my HD6XX in my collection as I have added 3 headphones to my collection in the past 2 months. They went from my front runners to my 3rd or 4th favorite. The K7XX are pretty dope too but you can find the K712 Pros for the same price. There is just something about that planar sound though, especially loud volumes.
Lol. I understand. I'm about to have added 3 sets of headphones my self in the last 6 months. What makes a good headphone for me is how they sound on the acoustic version of my favorite song. Thus the good high end. How is the comfort on the 4xx?
The comfort is amazing a lot better than I thought they would be. Less clamp force than the HD6XX with better stock pads too. I have wore them twice for more than 5 hours with no pain or discomfort at all.