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DaveinSM
44
Sep 26, 2018
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just got these in. Had a listen, and was able to make some quick, early comparisons with the Hifiman HE-4xx:
1. Treble: the treble on these is still detailed and sweet, but definitely less extended-sounding and less pronounced compared to the Hifiman. I wouldn't say that there's a veil, but treble is more polite and subdued in relation to mids and bass. That's not to say that the Hifiman is piercing; So far I prefer it for treble detail, and it delivers without sizzle. 2. Midrange: Both have a solid sounding midrange, though the HD58x midrange sounds to me more pronounced in the mix, both upper and lower midrange. I don't hear a hump, but it can sound a bit thicker and maybe a tad woolier in the lower mids than the Hifiman. Again, both are pretty neutral sounding, and some may prefer what the Sennheiser does for slightly bringing male vocals more into the mix. 3. Bass: The HE4xx seems to have flatter bass and more extended sub bass, but can sound a little lean in the upper bass. With the treble, it's a 'faster', livelier sounding headphone than the HD58x. Again, they're both pretty neutral sounding headphones, so the differences are not so huge, but this one's still pretty apparent. The HD58x is a softer, more rounded sounding phone with a somewhat meatier upper bass boost. As such, the bass doesn't seem to seem as tight as the Hifiman. 4. Sensitivity: The HD58x is considerably more sensitive than the HE4xx. Quick A-B switching on an Onkyo DP-X1a (high output setting) reveals that the Hifiman requires quite a bit of volume boosting to achieve the same SPL. I think this shows that despite the low output impedance of the Onkyo, headphone sensitivity is much more noticeable and important with portable devices than is headphone impedance. Despite the high 150 ohm impedance of the HD58x, it was much easier to drive to higher listening levels. 5. Comfort: Yes, the HD58x were tight fitting out of the box, but after some stretching they fit very comfortably. The earphone oval shape, clamping force, and lightweight of the HD58x mean that it stays in place on the head much more securely than the HE4xx. The HE4xx is comfortable out of the box with nice thick pads, but it is heavy and can slide around more. Both are comfortable in a seated, immobile position, but the HD58x has a nice, form-fitted feel and lightweight that make it the more comfortable of the two for me. 6. I'm looking into balanced cables for the HE4xx to boost output; has anyone tried balanced with the HD58x? If so, does it make a noticeable difference in sound quality?
So far, I'm happy with both, but probably a bit happier with the HD58x, despite the sound profile of the HE4xx being suited more to my taste. It's still a great headphone for rock music, but the Sennheiser definitely has other strengths as well.
Sep 26, 2018
jm090
244
Sep 27, 2018
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What amp are you using? i personally dont find these headphones to sound similar, nor do i find the 58X to be very neutral sounding..
Sep 27, 2018
DaveinSM
44
Sep 28, 2018
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Among other things, I’m using an Onkyo DP-x1a DAP. I’ve also compared these with my Fidelio X2, Sennheiser Momentum 1.0, B&W P7, Grado Sr80e, and even my Bose QC35 II. The HD58x is a smooth sounding headphone with much less bass emphasis than the Fidelio X2, and less treble emphasis than the P7. So in a relative sense, I consider it relatively neutral. And assuming no impedance mismatching, I don’t consider the difference in sound between amps to be anywhere as significant as that between different headphones on the same amp.
Sep 28, 2018
DaveinSM
44
Sep 28, 2018
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I never said they were that similar sounding, hence the comparison of the *differences* between the two, which are, again, readily apparent. Your comment seems to imply that you think the HE4xx is more neutral sounding, when actually a lot of people, including myself, think they’re a bit lean in the bass, particularly the upper bass. And no, studio monitor style headphones, even those with nominally flat frequency response curves, aren’t subjectively neutral. They’re good for finding detail in certain mixes, but will fail in emulating the true sound of a live miked recording, Look up the Harman Response Curve standard for headphones. It’s what I believe is a good reference for what a good system in a good room would sound like. Studio monitors can make certain recordings sound pretty awful unless those recordings were mixed with similar studio monitors (many aren’t)
Sep 28, 2018
HIFI778
593
Oct 1, 2018
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Remove the Foam from the caps and try again. You may be surprised.
Oct 1, 2018
DaveinSM
44
Oct 1, 2018
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You mean the foam inside the grills? If so, it doesn’t make an audible difference. This is supported by both measurements and by a statement by Sennheiser themselves here on MD to that effect. The foam is just there to protect the driver from dust and possible damage if dropped.
Oct 1, 2018
HIFI778
593
Oct 2, 2018
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Many people stated otherwise.
Oct 2, 2018
DaveinSM
44
Oct 2, 2018
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Well, graphs don‘t lie. Plus, I A-B comparison tested my own and couldn‘t hear any difference. I even tried combinations of one ear with and one without the foam. No difference. From Sennheiser: https://www.massdrop.com/buy/massdrop-x-sennheiser-hd-58x-jubilee-headphones/talk/2201998?utm_source=linkshare&referer=XJUD7A
Oct 2, 2018
jm090
244
Oct 3, 2018
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many people are influenced by what they want to believe.. like dave said, the graphs dont lie.
Oct 3, 2018
HIFI778
593
Oct 3, 2018
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Yes may be... but some people also bought 2 of these 58X and they swear the sound of the one with foam and the other without foam is different.
Oct 3, 2018
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