Initial listening session between the HE5XX and HE500

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decammp
0
Nov 18, 2020
Where can I get one of these adapters ?
mbvjmc
165
Nov 21, 2020
Search for 6F8G/6C8G to 6922 adapter on ebay. Unfortunately, they're too big to fit in the CTH's hole. You will either have to bore a larger hole for the adapter in the CTH or get... another adapter, this time a 6922 to 6922 socket saver. They sell cheap ones on ebay (quality varies of course). The best constructed 6922-to-6922 socket savers are from tubemonger: https://www.tubemonger.com/NOVIB_Socket_Saver_1960s_NOS_British_McMurdo_B9A_p/novib-mcmurdo.htm The caveat with the tubemonger socket saver is that they are extremely difficult to pry off from the CTH when firmly placed therein (hey, that's their function since they're socket savers). The cheaper Chinese ones from ebay are easier to remove. However, the caveat with the Chinese ones is that there have been stories of shoddy soldering jobs, which damaged amplifiers. It is easy to unscrew the Chinese ones and check the workmanship however, so you should be good to go if the soldering does not show any signs of potential shortcircuiting (e.g. solder gobs that bridge two pins or have the potential to if the solder is of poor quality).
decammp
0
Nov 28, 2020
Thank you. How much of a difference does a power tube make on a hybrid amp?
GTFODeathknight
141
Nov 16, 2020
what tube is that on the CTH?
mbvjmc
165
Nov 16, 2020
Tung-Sol 6C8G (black glass) on a 6F8G/6C8G-ECC88 adapter sitting atop a 6922 (noval) socket saver (tubemonger).
Antykain
42
Nov 14, 2020
Nice setup there! So, thoughts on the HE-500 vs. the HE-5XX? I should be getting my HE-5XX soon, and can't wait! Been using the HD 6XX paired with the iFi Zen CAN/DAC stack and have been really impressed with it. What cables are you using with your HE-5XX in the pic? I just ordered the Hart Audio cables for mine.
(Edited)
mbvjmc
165
Nov 15, 2020
The balanced cable that I'm using for my HE5XX is one that I made: Mogami W2893, Rean Neutrik NYS226BG 3.5mm mono TS jack (2x), Neutrik NC4MXX-B 4-pin XLR connector, and various heatshrink and paracord (color/pattern: force). Here's my comparison between the HE5XX (stock) and the HE-500 (velpads):
  • Build: HE500 >> HE5XX
  • Dynamics: HE500 > HE5XX
  • Bass Slam: HE500 > HE5XX
  • Bass Extension: HE500 > HE5XX
  • Mids: HE500 > HE5XX
  • Treble: HE500 > HE5XX
  • Detail retrieval: HE500 > HE5XX
  • Soundstage: HE5XX > HE500
In terms of sound, the HE5XX is more in line with the newer, softer Hifimans using the nanothickness diaphragms. The punch and dynamics from the older HE-models, particularly the HE-500 and the HE-6, are subdued in the HE5XX. Still, I was impressed with the soundstage of the HE5XX being slightly wider than the HE500; the soundstages of both are wider than the HD6XX. One of the main calling cards of the HE500, its lush and liquid midrange, is not present in the HE5XX. Instead, the mids of the HE5XX are thinner (i.e. less body) yet still decent but are no match for those of the HE500 or the H6XX (of which I also own and compared against the HE5XX as well). The upper mids and the lower treble on the HE5XX are more peaky than the HE500 and sometimes gets a little smeary on certain tracks. I found on my gear that the HE500 and HD6XX kept instrument lines better delineated than the HE5XX. Now, the upper mid/lower treble peak may be tamed with EQ and the bass roll-off of the HE5XX can be improved with mods (either the tape mod or blu-tak mod, warranty issues may arise with the latter). Despite the mods and EQ, I don't know whether the lesser detail retrieval capability of the HE5XX can be improved. Still, the worst aspect of the HE5XX in my experience has been its build quality. Obviously short-cuts were made here and my unit came with a half-broken right side button of the headband--the right earcup is barely hanging on by a single screw. The short-cuts to the build obviously made the cans feel light as feather (a great achievement for normally hefty planars), which helped make them an extremely comfortable headphone to wear. Still, the HE5XX feels extremely flimsy and does not appear to be well-put together. Overall, I don't have much confidence in its longevity compared to the HD6XX, a better headphone at the same price point with a much better build quality imo. In short, if you want to listen to the HE500, then find one on the used market or hopefully someone at a local meet can bring one. Unfortunately, the HE5XX does not "bring the iconic HE500 Series up to speed," as stated by Drop's announcement. On its own, it is okay for $220 and it sounds different enough and has a little bit more energy than the HD6XX to make it a decent companion to it (especially if mods can lessen the bass roll-off of the HE5XX).
(Edited)