Jupiter Audio Research HD650 Impressions/Measurements (Finalized Mod)

Discussion in 'Headphone Measurements' started by Hands, Oct 19, 2018.

  1. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    JAR600 vs JAR650
    upload_2019-10-4_21-38-47.png
     
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  2. fierce_freak

    fierce_freak Friend

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    I have a jar 600 incoming, but I think I may have a jar 650 in my future based on fr on your graph (that bass extension!). Excited to get the jar 600, though.
     
  3. fierce_freak

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    Got the 600 today and gave it a listen for about 30 minutes. Wow, brilliant. The control over the drivers is really great, so clean and precise. I'm more impressed than I thought I would be (new toy and quick impressions caveat of course)
     
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  4. Pharmaboy

    Pharmaboy Friend

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    I never much liked the HD600 to begin with, so never pursued a JAR650 w/@ext1. Interesting to read these brief but positive comments about it...hope to read more impressions about your JAR600.

    I can tell you the JAR650 is also brilliant (IMHO)--building upon the pleasing basic voicing of the stock HD650, w/everything that's good getting even better.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2019
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  5. ChaChaRealSmooth

    ChaChaRealSmooth SBAF Gearmaster

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    Thanks to @Hands, I got to try the latest iteration of the JAR HD650. TL;DR, my impressions roughly coincide with @Hands' opinion on them.

    To me, these sound like a HD650+. The sound tightens up a bit and it sounds more controlled. The most noticeable thing was the bass; these do go some way into fixing the looseness in the bass. This also affects the bass-to-mids transition; the headphone sounds more cohesive in this region to my ears. However, it's still a HD650, so they're not going to deliver phat planar bass or anything like that. Secondarily, the mids-to-treble is smoothed out a bit; anyone slightly bothered by a little heat in the lower treble of the stock HD650 may find these a bit smoother.

    I'm unsure whether these are more resolving than the HD650 stock, but the details are a bit more obvious with this headphone. The stopping behavior is where the JAR HD650 sounds more controlled, and possibly why it seems to sound a bit blacker in background, making the aforementioned details stand out a bit more.

    I should mention build quality; these do feel pretty solid. For those worried these might feel like a grade school project, they don't. Also, interestingly, I find myself turning the pot on the Starlett up with these; they don't seem to play as loudly as my ZMF stuff, or the stock HD650.

    Speaking of Starlett, amp synergies carry over from the stock one. I thoroughly enjoyed these out of both Euforia and Starlett.

    I like these, but it's important to bear in mind that these are still a HD650. Any complaints about the stock HD 650 is likely going to carry over to these.
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2019
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  6. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

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    @ChaChaRealSmooth Final revision + that custom charcoal foam I used in the rear, yeah?
     
  7. ChaChaRealSmooth

    ChaChaRealSmooth SBAF Gearmaster

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    Yes to both. I haven't touched the earlier version yet.
     
  8. tommytakis

    tommytakis Gear Cycler SoCal Edition

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    JAR650 Impressions:
    287348C7-D903-43D4-84E9-E41FA717DB6B.jpeg
    I was previously very impressed with the JAR600 so I had high hopes for JAR650. I’m happy to report that JAR650 exceeded my expectation and might slightly prefer it over the JAR600. Thank you @ext1 for making sure my JAR650 was sent before heading out to serve in the military. Hope the military life is treating you well and Best of luck to you Jupiter.

    Listening Chain: Pi2AES > Bifrost 2> SW51+ | Black Widow > JAR650 | JAR600 | Verum 1

    - Okay, so let’s start with the overall tonality...Surprise! It’s still a 650!!!! hahaha jokes aside, I see this as a good thing for fans of the 650 signature like myself. As @ChaChaRealSmooth has pointed out, it’s more like a 650+ with some tweaks to make it a more technically proficient (macro) and enjoyable headphone. When I first saw the pictures of JAR650, I was a bit worried that it would quickly lead to fatigue because of its substantially larger cut on the inside, compared to the coin mod on 650K. I found the JAR650 much smoother with zero fatigue.
    - the low end feels substantially tighter and more controlled and no longer has that “wooly” bass that the stock version is often criticized for. It’s still not a strong point for the 650, but feels less like a weakness. When comparing against Verum 1, I found the differences were not as bad as one would expect. I suspect that SW51+ is partly the reason for it as I felt that the bass on the BW made the bass too “bloomy” for my taste.
    -Ugh, yes... the sennheiser mids. It’s heavenly. It’s full bodied without being too forward and smooth like butter with no hint of roughness in vocals. This is the main reason why I prefer the JAR650 over the 600. The JAR600 sounds more lively at the cost of some roughness heard sometimes when I shuffle through various genre. I prefer the JAR600 on instrumental genre, but majority of my listening consist of vocal-oriented genre so the JAR650 naturally ends up getting more listening time on my head.
    - Treble feels slightly relaxed than the JAR600, but please don’t misinterpret this as being “dark,” because it’s not. I actually found that it pairs better with a more neutral sounding amp like the SW51+. Seriously excellent synergy. I’m curious to see what @Phantaminum ends up preferring (Elex vs. JAR650) with SW51+ because while I found the synergy to be great with the Elex as well, I felt that it was a bit tipped up in the air region and could only enjoy at lower volume.
    - macro and micro dynamics are both excellent. Just like JAR600, it really tightens and focuses the sound compared to the stock 650. The image is still 3 blobby, but it feels more controlled in the macro aspect. I felt that JAR650 easily surpasses the Verum 1 in this aspect. Maybe not a fair comparison since it’s mainly due to Dynamic vs. Planar.
    - it’s still highly resolving of low level detail and nuanced just like the 650.
    - clarity seems improved with blacker background. Instruments seemed better separated and less blended together compared to stock.

    Overall, I think JAR650 is an excellent product geared towards 650 fans like myself. It’s definitely a step up from the KISS mod (which I still appreciate) and I’m not sure what other mods we can do to improve from here. It won’t wow you with crazy 3D spherical rendering like the Verite, but it’s a mature headphone that you’ll always come back to. I still stand by what I said about the JAR600 as I can see people preferring one over the other. This will probably be my daily driver for the foreseeable future and thank you @ext1 and @Hands for all your hard work creating this beast!
     
  9. StageOne

    StageOne Friend

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    JAR Mod 650/600

    In stock form, I tend to favor the HD600 over the 650. I enjoy the brighter side vs the sometimes boomy/bloomy bass of the latter headphone. The majority of my listening was done on the DNA Starlett with a couple hours on a ZDT Jr. I currently own the HD600 and HD6XX so I was able to do a full comparison of all four headphones. Full chain is below:

    RoonPi > Gungnir MB > Freya S > Starlett
    RoonPi > RDAC > EC ZDT jr.

    I’ve not heard any modified Senns so I was looking forward to how these sounded. From reading the other reviews I had high hopes they would add to the HD6xx experience and not detract in much if any way. The JAR 650 exceeded my exceptions. It improved upon the already solid HD650 and stood out as my favorite of the bunch.

    Right away you can hear the improvement in bass/mid control the JAR 650 has over the stock HPs. When the drums come in on SRV’s Little Wing, it just sounds so defined and sharp. The stock HD650s can be a bit boomy/bloomy in the mid-bass but the modified version is much tighter. Attack and decay are faster, and it opens up the instrument separation. It reminds me of the dynamics and speed of the Focal Clear. I initially thought it expanded the head-stage but after more listening it seems the same, just the increased space between sounds gives the illusion of a wider stage. Also in Little Wing the guitar seems to have more sustain. Individual string plucks sound so clear and crystalline. A similar sound is heard by acoustic duo Rod Y Gab on Tamacun.

    One area that I nitpick on with both of the stock Senns is a little bit of congestion in the mids. When the music gets busy you lose separation and get a little bit of smearing. The Jar mods do make improvements here but still falls short of the HD800 or Clear.

    The JAR 600 has similar improvements to the mids and bass but I found on many songs the treble was just too much. I really like the stock HD600 but the mods just make it too bright for me and that was surprising as I do tend to lean towards that direction. But I guess there are limits to everything.

    Listening to a wide range of music I heard no downside to the JAR 650 and improvements across the spectrum compared to a stock HD650 I’m really impressed.

    Big thanks to SBAF for placing these on a loaner tour!

    tl;dr
    A solid upgrade to an already solid headphone. JAR 650, two thumbs way the [email protected]#$ up!
     
  10. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

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    @StageOne I find it quite interesting that you heard the JAR HD600 as brighter than the stock HD600. Or, at least, that you found it too bright despite liking the stock HD600.

    Last time I heard a stock HD600, I found it way too hot in the upper-mids. Not necessarily bright, of course, but very hot. Maybe some would hear that as bright either way.

    The JAR HD600s I've heard were much more balanced in the mids and treble than the stock 600 I used to own. In fact, I use them as my main headphone, and that's coming from an HD650 f̶u̶c̶k̶e̶r̶ lover. And I think the measurements of two pairs I tested backed up at least what I was hearing.

    I even prefer it to the JAR HD650...curiously enough...:oops: And that's probably the main reason I find this all interesting!

    Sorry if I missed it, but when you listened to the JAR HD600, was it equipped with the stock, Sennhesier foam (black) on the rear side? Feel free, and this goes for anyone else, to play around with different damping in that attachment piece, or run it without any at all on the back. The adhesive tape holds up for quite a few removals and re-applications, and it's easy to replace if it loses stickiness. Some may prefer the JAR HD600 without rear foam. I have a buddy that prefers the JAR HD650 without rear foam, though I find that much too bloomy myself.

    Again, by no means am I questioning what you heard, because I know others have reported the same thing, some not. @ext1 even made sure the current loaners had the latest/final mods applied in case that accounted for earlier discrepancies, but seems some still hear the JAR HD600 as bright. It is what it is. :)
     
  11. Ntbm3

    Ntbm3 Friend

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    Hands when you mention 'foam' do you mean the foam circles in the center?

    I have the loaners now and snapped a pic as received. These are probably how @StageOne used them as well.
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
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  12. StageOne

    StageOne Friend

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    @Hands, I did not change the headhone foam at all, just used them as the arrived. From looking at photos of them, I think they are as you described. Maybe @Superexchanger can confirm if he made any changes.

    I think the better control emphasized the treble making it too bright and even peaky at times for me.

    My headphone preferences for most music is below, but it can change on certain songs.
    JAR 650 > HD600 > HD650 > JAR 600
     
  13. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

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    Thanks dude, looks as expected to me!
     
  14. ChaChaRealSmooth

    ChaChaRealSmooth SBAF Gearmaster

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    Don't mind @Hands; he can be is a curious bastard. :p

    Yes, that is indeed the foam that he's referring to. A potential option is the take the HD600 foam off and place it on the HD650 if you want slightly less damping. Tape should have been included in the loaner, so if the tape holding the little plastic bits (they hold the foam in place) loses adhesion, not a big deal to cut a few small pieces and stick it back on. I wouldn't necessarily recommend the other way around; the charcoal-colored foam in the HD650 is a bit much on the HD600, but YMMV.

    I can definitely see the point that the JAR 600 might be a bit too much for some people; although I'd imagine the same people might find the Focals also a bit overbearing. Did you find the Clear to your taste?
     
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  15. StageOne

    StageOne Friend

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    And that's the odd thing. I own the Focal Clears and they are my current favorite headphone. I love the bass extension without a mid-bass bump, speed, detail and I don't mind the treble. Though I will admit I have heard a handful of songs where the treble peaks get to me, but that is a very small minority.

    .. and now you think I'm a crazy person and are clicking the "ignore" button...
     
  16. Ntbm3

    Ntbm3 Friend

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    Moar loaner impressions y0!

    Thanks for offering this loaner, I have been interested in hearing this mod for a while!

    I happen to own and HD600 (I think it is 20yrs old..I have had for 15), HD650 and HD800s which gave me a chance to compare

    Chain is Unison->BF2->DNA Starlett

    Impressions:

    - JAR600/ HD600 overall not my cup of tea... too much treble energy and lack of bass for me. only reason I still have the HD600 is sentimental reason..first real headphone.

    - JAR650 vs HD650
    • Really impressed, difference are subtle but they do a lot right.
    • The biggest difference for me is less congestion, which improves clarity, separation and layering.
    • Tightened up bass, removes the woof or woolyness of the HD650. Because cleaner the bass impact seems more powerful, maybe digs just a bit deeper as well.
    • Upper mid and highs have just enough added resolution and sparkle but not changing the HD650 nature of a bit on the dark side. Darkish suits my preference.
    • the JAR650 does tone down some of the texture/tone the 650 has.

    -JAR650 vs 800s
    • If you twist my arm hard enough I could say I prefer the JAR650 over the 800s. In the sense that I could listen to the JAR650 all day where the 800s does fun tricks but can get old after longer sessions.
    • JAR650 less resolution… slightly less harsh in vocal region.
    • Bass resolution is behind 800s but not a lot.
    The JAR650 are a surprising blend of the HD650 and 800s. Definitely suites my preferences

    [​IMG]

    Stuck in the spare bedroom for work at home office....

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2020
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  17. YMO

    YMO it's not drinking alone if you're on Zoom

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    Hardware Used for Impressions:

    PC: Thinkpad X260 > Modi 3 > Magni 3+

    Main: Thinkpad X260 UPnP Server or Roon > PI2AES Outputting BNC Adapter to Coax > Bifrost 2 > XLR: THX AAA 789 or RCA: EC ZDT Jr.

    The listening was done with no alcohol, this review was typed up with alcohol. Bite me.

    Senn Mods Senn Mods Senn Mods Senn Mods Senn Mods Senn Mods Senn Mods Senn Mods

    For the longest time I don’t know why the hell people were modding their Senns. After picking up the HD600 and the HD6XX, they are great for their purposes. HD600 if you want the unveiled neutral with maybe a slight treble tilt. The HD6XX (HD650) is veiled but smooth and I think it’s great for long term listening on a night with alcohol (aka not being too analytical, which I use the HD600 as my analytical pair of cans) or listening to music while reading a book or reading comics/manga like a fat kid.

    Mods Mods Mods Mods improve this improve that. I’m like WTF guys with this modding shit. Every time I mod something I screw it up. I guess that’s why I didn’t really care for them. @Bill-P mods mods mods mods, @purr1n mods mods mods mods. The more I keep reading mods the more I’m like ok ok ok ok ok I need to get caught up on years of modding stuff, or maybe….

    Then I saw that the JAR HD600 + JAR HD650 were available on the loaner program. I love my Senns due they scale greatly, they fit great on my head with no comfort issues, and they aren’t normally aggressive to me (compared to a Focal on a bright Amp/DAC). I was like why the hell not, I was curious on how much an improvement the JARs will be when comparing to stock.

    JAR HD600

    I don’t know why @Hands like this, maybe he is high like the Rocky Mountains I dunno I do read posts when I am drunk. I think this is a slightly more tilted treble can than a stock HD600. A little more resolution was gained on the mods than stock. People are saying that there’s too much treble energy on the JAR HD600, and I see their point. It didn’t brother me to be honest. The bass is more/less the same as a stock HD600, tight like my fat in jeans. I like it when listening to my reference recordings like West Montgomery – So Much Gutiar! DCC CD, Steely Dan – Aja + Gaucho, David Sylvian – Gone to Earth 80s CD press, Thomas Dolby – The Flat Earth 80s CD press, and Billy Joel - 52nd Street DCC CD. The reference recordings are great because it can show how great a recording was done, or the mastering. So yeah on Aja + Gaucho it’s tons of detail jizz on how well the recording was done on those albums. Gone to Earth is a classic 80s produced album, but it is very atmospheric for headstage measurements.

    The mids I guess are a hair better on smoothnesss, but honestly I think it mostly sounds the same. The treble as I stated has more energy, which not everyone is going to like. However, it can provide a little more detail and maybe a little more air than stock. I think with the mods there’s better driver control. I think headstage is just about the same as stock.

    I’m going to be honest, these aren’t making my dick hard at all. Honestly, I think these mods are a waste on a HD600. I just can’t see why these are a huge improvement over a stock HD600. Maybe I’m not hearing the appeal? Maybe I’m stupid? Or maybe I was hoping for a big improvement over stock? Whatever it is I thought these were nothing special. I put back on the stock HD600 and I say yeah the stock is fine.

    @ext1, whenever you read this when you return from service, I would focus on the HD650 or work with @Bill-P on Bill’s special project that he is cooking up in his kitchen. Because the reason why I say that issss……


    @ext1 is on to something with the HD650.


    JAR HD650

    The veil is gone, yet the midrange is still smooth like the HD6XX and bass response is improved with less of the wobble. And damn, this sounds pretty damn good with these mods. Taking a play book from Rocky Mountain High @Hands In The Sky, I took out my copy of Daft Punk – Random Access Memories and started to play Lose Yourself to Dance. The JAR HD650 provide plenty of texture on the beginning track and you were able to tell when the drum was hitting. While at times on the HD6XX it was a little muted unless you listen in carefully.

    I think the JAR HD650 is on a warm toneish side, which make sense since it’s a mod of the HD650. I liked the tone a lot since it can make a lot of 80s recordings sound nice with a thicker sound (while IMO a lot of 80s digital mastering can be flat). David Sylvian – Gone to Earth was pretty sweet since it was more of an “light electronic” album. The album fits well with the smoothness of the midrange, while the highs are more noticeable since the veil is gone. Ok I must admit the improvements of the bass put a smile on my face, but I don’t think it is even near neutral at that point. Ok, at least on the bass end of things it is not neutral. If you want your bass to be more tight or neutral, get a stock HD600. If you really want bass, don’t do a Senn. The highs are mostly to me similar to the HD6XX but with the veil removed. It didn’t brother me, but isn’t me or the highs are slightly dry? I don’t think they are dark or anything, but it won’t win the treble detail battle when comparing it to a Focal Clear. However, I did notice a slight improvement on resolution.

    Maybe the mods are a 10%-20% upgrade over a stock HD6XX/HD650? At least it kept the most important feature that I like about the HD6XX: It is still warm and smooth like a baby butt so you can listen to music on it for hours without your head hurting or getting fatigue. Just the JAR HD650 improves on the sound and most importantly gets rid of the veil. If you like the HD650 or HD6XX as is, then that is fine! If you prefer some improvements over stock, I would honestly do the JAR HD650 instead.


    In The End

    I dunno why the JAR HD600 didn’t impress me. Maybe the mods weren’t too my liking. I’m puzzled on why they didn’t make my dick hard, but the JAR HD650 did HARD AND LONG. When @ext1 is back and the world is settled after the virus situation, I would like to inquire about a price for a pair of the JAR HD650.

    Like @StageOne, I’m giving the JAR HD650 a good thumbs up. However, I have to give the JAR HD600 a two thumbs down because these were a disappointment to me.

    So here’s my preference: JAR HD650 > HD600 = HD6XX > JAR HD600


     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2020
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  18. Ntbm3

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    I contacted him about JAR650 mod a few months back and he said $490. Only mods new headphone he sources.

    A bit steep but they do something that is special!

    They are the love child of a hd800s and HD650 in all the best ways!
     
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  19. Pharmaboy

    Pharmaboy Friend

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    I love the sound of my JAR650...worth every penny. I liked the stock HD650, but the JAR650 is a higher level; all changes are in the right direction & proportion IMHO.

    Then again, 2 admissions:
    • I did all my listening without alcohol*
    • And at no time did the JAR650 get my dick hard (I think)
    *not recommended in combination with the street drugs I take every waking moment
     
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  20. YMO

    YMO it's not drinking alone if you're on Zoom

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    I forgot the last thing: I typed this while I had a cat on my lap.

    Edit: Thanks @Ntbm3 for the heads up. It will be awhile due to @ext1 I believe serves in the Korean Military, so he will be MIA for now.
     
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