Sennheiser HD650 Love (Appreciation Thread)

Discussion in 'Headphone Measurements' started by purr1n, Sep 27, 2015.

Tags:
  1. Maxx134

    Maxx134 Dunning–Kruger effect poster boy

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    814
    Dislikes Received:
    176
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    NYC
    I just did the left side, now I gotta do the right and can have both up (580&650) for loaners.
    Edit:
    Ok mod complete.
    **Edit mod was updated with new material to boost extremes.
    So this was old pic shown.
    IMG_20200110_141341.jpg

    Woops, apologies, I updated my CSD to go more to the left, down to 200hz, so parameters more even with the other.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2020
  2. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

    Staff Member Friend MZR
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    11,051
    Dislikes Received:
    39
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Colorado
    Home Page:
    Your software, settings, and rig are not at all comparable to mine for measurements.
     
    famish99 and Lyander like this.
  3. Maxx134

    Maxx134 Dunning–Kruger effect poster boy

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    814
    Dislikes Received:
    176
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    NYC
    Absolutely correct so I am willing to habit test it out.

    I'm going to change my loaner, because my testing revealed yesterday that the 580
    (Aka600) has limitations, but the 650 actually has greater potential and I was able to observe increased resolve in my listening(!) and so it makes all the other versions moot.

    I have good bass slam, which would otherwise have needed a powerful tube amp, and the trebles have greater nuance than the 580(600) in my music cymbals, but they still need more boosting so I will be tuning it and post/update it in the loaner thread .
     
  4. Maxx134

    Maxx134 Dunning–Kruger effect poster boy

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    814
    Dislikes Received:
    176
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    NYC
    Update I finished tunning my 650 and am stoked at how well it came out and will post in loaner thread details next.
    :)
     
  5. Maxx134

    Maxx134 Dunning–Kruger effect poster boy

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    814
    Dislikes Received:
    176
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    NYC
    For those that are curious, I updated my Loaner thread and added the "before-and-after" measurements.
    Cheers.
     
    Walderstorn likes this.
  6. ChaChaRealSmooth

    ChaChaRealSmooth SBAF Gearmaster

    Staff Member Friend Gearmaster
    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Likes Received:
    5,412
    Dislikes Received:
    14
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    La Mirada, CA
    I have had the opportunity to listen to @m17xr2b's mod to the HD650, and I have to admit that I'm not the biggest fan. I'm really curious to see if there are measurements that can confirm what I hear, but I believe that most of my annoyances come from the FR.

    While the "HD690" sounds less sleepy and laid-back, it comes at the price of sounding very hot in the upper mids. I hear a stridency to the tone that makes me wince in some vocals and in some metallic percussion hits. The bass bloat and the bass bleed into the mids has been reduced, but in relation to what I described before, I hear this as quite lean. This prevents me from listening at my normal levels.

    That being stated, I do hear some technical improvements. The greyish background is not as present compared to stock, and the headphone has more attack in the notes. It does bring details more forward than stock, but I don't necessarily hear it as more detailed; more like "moar" detailed.

    Overall, I just didn't find it enjoyable for me and I'd rather listen to the stock HD650. I'd be curious about the opinion of someone who prefers the stock HD600 though.
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2020
  7. RobS

    RobS RobS? More like RobDiarrhea.

    Banned
    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2019
    Likes Received:
    1,874
    Dislikes Received:
    103
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Appalachia
    Have you heard the KISS modded HD650, ChaCha? Opinions on that?
     
  8. ChaChaRealSmooth

    ChaChaRealSmooth SBAF Gearmaster

    Staff Member Friend Gearmaster
    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Likes Received:
    5,412
    Dislikes Received:
    14
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    La Mirada, CA
    I actually have not. I'd mod my own HD6XX, but I'm, uh....kind of a lazy bastard. I have heard the JAR stuff though, and thoroughly enjoyed both the JAR 600 and 650.
     
  9. Maxx134

    Maxx134 Dunning–Kruger effect poster boy

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    814
    Dislikes Received:
    176
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    NYC
    I have also noted this same problem when you tone down the bass.
    A small upper treble hump appears, and that area becomes strident.

    At first it is impressive, because in comparison to stock, it sounds more alive and free of the muddy bass.
    But it wasn't optimal for me, so further tunnig was required.

    I found that it was best to keep those upper mids more even & closer in line with the trebles, while also keeping the lower spectrum elevated over both, for bass.
    So I can imagine that may be Somewhat near the possible tonality differences between mine and that 690mod.
    Edit*
    I just have to update that thread with new frequency response pic.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2020
  10. brencho

    brencho Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2015
    Likes Received:
    7,346
    Dislikes Received:
    12
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    LA
    I dunno man, I didn’t hear any of that stridency that Chacha mentions in m1x1757dja’s mods. Don’t you have focal and a matrix dac? Those can get strident, maybe it’s the dac you’re hearing? The UK modded 650 def sound less congested, more open, less mid bass phatness. But strident... they’re still 650s, with more open air and less mid bass, maybe a bit brighter as a result but for a warm headphone I don’t see it as a problem. If someone likes the warm comfort of the stock 650 then that’s cool, keep listening to it. I’m in the camp that even the quarter mod doesn’t make the 650 strident so ymmv.
     
    Philimon, yotacowboy, obsiCO and 4 others like this.
  11. ChaChaRealSmooth

    ChaChaRealSmooth SBAF Gearmaster

    Staff Member Friend Gearmaster
    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Likes Received:
    5,412
    Dislikes Received:
    14
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    La Mirada, CA
    I don't hear the same stridency with any other headphone I own. For some reason it's the most egregious on this particular modded HD650.
     
  12. Maxx134

    Maxx134 Dunning–Kruger effect poster boy

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    814
    Dislikes Received:
    176
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    NYC
    I was able to smooth/extend out the peak area in low trebles that treble mods like "coin-mod" elevates.
    I was also able to elevate treble "air" range (over 7khz) a bit.

    Also reduced low mids thickness and bass bleed, while at same time boosting low end bass, which untill now impossible to do while elevating treble range at same time...
    I posted in my loaner thread a before and after pics.
    Stock:
    HD650 stock FR blk bffl.jpg
    Nxt Gen Mod:
    HD650 Next Gen Jan27 FR.jpg
    :)
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2020
  13. E_Schaaf

    E_Schaaf MOT: Upscale Audio; recovering HFM addict

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2017
    Likes Received:
    4,116
    Dislikes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Pasadena, CA
    I'm not sure why anyone would want more bass compared to stock HD650, especially if extension is not dramatically improved. And the whole appeal of the 650 is the fairly linear midrange and treble response - which is now a bit scooped.

    If I wanted a fairly V-shaped response with primary emphasis on midbass and upper mids, I'd buy a cheap IEM and call it quits. I guess this could be a take on a 'fun'-style tuning, assuming dynamics are improved. But also looks like it would be more picky about musical content and less of a jack-of-all-trades VS stock tuning.

    Not saying your work doesn't have value, but I am skeptical and eager to hear further impressions from more members.
     
    Philimon, riker1384, Baten and 4 others like this.
  14. Justin S

    Justin S Rando

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2018
    Likes Received:
    21
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location:
    Toronto
    I didn't really get the excitement about the 650s until recently. I'm a speakers/monitors guy and love sound-in-the-room with the staging and imaging that comes with it. I recently made a shift from nighttime monitors to headphones which has been an adjustment.

    I feel like I finally understand the HD650s (6xxs). I picked up a pair over a year ago and could not stand them initially (I did a 100hr burn-in before making this assessment). I strongly preferred my HD600s and my pair of custom Grado-style builds (Elleven Acoustica R1).

    I worked my way through a few other pairs of headphones that came and went but kept the 650s around, thinking I should try to figure them out. You all make them sound like the Super Best Value Ever.

    I performed the SBAF kiss mod on them, and they were undoubtedly more clear, but still kind of flat and compressed sounding.

    After picking up a ZDT Jr, I got a glimmer of what these headphones could do, though the staging and bass still left something to be desired.

    With some recent horse-trading, I managed to secure an upgraded Mapletree Audio Design Ear+ HD and, well, wow. The 650s light up with this amp. The staging is deep and occasionally wide, the imaging is 3D and precise, the midrange is spooky, the bass is tight and slam-y, and the treble is detailed and smooth.

    I know it has been said, but the 650s scale to a shocking degree. For me, they went from being woolly or compressed or meh sounding with my other amps to being my favourite. I auditioned a pair of HD800S headphones last week, and left feeling happy with my current setup and wallet right where they are for now.

    TIDAL/Redbook>ROON (W10)>sometimes HQplayer upres to DSD>USB>RME ADI2 DAC FS>DIY Kimber SE Cables>Mapletree Audio Design Ear+ HD (moded) W various NOS tubes>DIY SPC headphone cable>HD6xx SBAF Kiss Mod.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2020
    Ryanr1987, Philimon, Lyander and 5 others like this.
  15. E_Schaaf

    E_Schaaf MOT: Upscale Audio; recovering HFM addict

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2017
    Likes Received:
    4,116
    Dislikes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Pasadena, CA
    Just did a mod of the HD6xx over the weekend. I've been listening to them stock for about 4 months since I got them used here from another friend (who also left them stock)

    I continually compared to my stock HD580 with each incremental change, and slept on the mods a few nights to listen with fresh ears and be sure the changes were actual improvements (to my ears and tastes) and not just compromises or trade-offs compared to stock. Most of the mods individually were trade-offs, but I found a bit of mod synergy that tailors things in quite a bit and diminishes some of the compromises.

    I started by doing the KISS mod (which is definitely an improvement), but then tweaked a bit. See below -

    1. Application of goop (I don't remember the brand of the stuff I got but it's not Dynamat or Damplifier - works really well though and it's pretty heavy) - I used a lot because I have plenty to spare and figured if I took things all the way it couldn't possibly hurt and would simply add mass (generally a good thing). Worst case, using too much just means a waste of time from diminishing returns. I like the look though.

    [​IMG]

    Note spider removal and complete lack of foam behind the magnet. This made it a bit uncontrolled at first so I played with different foam coverings of the magnet (and even lost a piece of melamine INSIDE that hole that I had to tweeze out with a paper clip). I really wanted to have no front or rear foams for a more lively dynamic profile and better top-end extension/articulation (front filters are generally best avoided if possible, but important when necessary). More on how this worked out later.

    2. I put tungsten putty in the front (don't know how much I used in terms of weight - just split a little tin in half which fit perfectly. Probably 14g-28g per side given it was a 1-2 oz tin). And then a very thick glasses cleaning cloth cut to shape over the bottom half of the baffle (I probably could've been craftier and cut this in a more U-shape contour to fit the baffle better but this was the last tweak I made and it sounded fine as-is so I just kept it). Along with some extremely coarse porous foam on the fron-facing side of the baffle. I got the stuff from a luthier friend of mine - he puts it inside the cavities of his guitars. It all stays firmly in place when I snap the pads in. Look! No front foam!

    [​IMG]

    3. And lastly, the pad mod - risers on the back-of-ear side for a bit of an angle and to increase the volume of the pad cavity. I haven't been in love with any pad rolling options on Senns so I figured I'd keep the stock pads and simply mod them with materials not unlike what the pads themselves are made of. I used cotton 'dental swabs' that would normally sit on your gums. This made a big change in staging/imaging (wider and better separated, a baby step closer to that HD800 smoke-and-mirrors thing) and also reduced proximity ear-to-driver, which tamed the hot upper mids and treble that came from removing the front foam.

    [​IMG]

    Overall these mods are pretty synergistic with each other - removing all the front and magnet foam kind of sucks without the risers and front baffle damping (OUCH TOO HOT), but the pad mods and mass loading really took the edge off while retaining the top-end extension and lifting the literal foam veil. There's actually a bit of tactility in the bass now (still some roll-off though) because of the mass and extra earside volume. I'd consider another baffle damper for the top-half - the middle mids are a bit forward compared to before, but shouldn't hurt any HD600 fans. Or a swap to the super broken in pads works well to bring things down further.

    I'll post some measures as soon as I can get my EARS back from work! Otherwise these will soon take a trip to @brencho , who can hopefully compare to the JAR600 and give me some feedback.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2020
  16. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

    Staff Member Friend MZR
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    11,051
    Dislikes Received:
    39
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Colorado
    Home Page:
    Another thing you could try, if you haven't already, is putting foam or other acoustic material on the rear side of the baffle mesh, in those little cavities. You might be able to get away with lighter, less dense material in all the cavities rather than a thicker, denser material only in choice spots.
     
    E_Schaaf likes this.
  17. E_Schaaf

    E_Schaaf MOT: Upscale Audio; recovering HFM addict

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2017
    Likes Received:
    4,116
    Dislikes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Pasadena, CA
    Still don't have my EARS so these measurements are only good for relative comparison (not compared to other measurements on the EARS), but here's the effect of the mod vs stock HD580. Used a binaural mic worn at the ear canal opening, took a bunch of measurements and settled on the ones that had the lowest distortion readings (noisy apartment means they were all over the map and varied a lot each time, so grains of salt and all that). Used the broken-in pads on both as they best suit my preference. There's a bit of an artifact at 6-7k in both measures (seen in FR and distortion) - just ignore that. Didn't move the mic at all, and didn't touch the volume pot at all either. Valhalla 2 hi-gain.

    HD580 STOCK (ignore that chat bubble in the bottom right - shhhhh)

    [​IMG]

    HD650 Modded per above instructions -

    [​IMG]
    What's interesting is I"m getting less upper mids and treble on the modded 650 despite the lack of any front or rear magnet/driver-obstructing foam. HD580 sounds a bit soft and veiled in comparison despite the hotter top-half - the modded 650 is much punchier, tighter, livlier, but also more evenly sloped. Bass rolloff wasn't fixed, as expected, but it is much more tactile on the modded pair.
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2020
  18. E_Schaaf

    E_Schaaf MOT: Upscale Audio; recovering HFM addict

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2017
    Likes Received:
    4,116
    Dislikes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Pasadena, CA
    Grabbed my EARS from work and took some measures. Dug up my initial 6XX measurements (stock, fresh pads), and matched all the parameters.

    Stock, fresh pads -
    [​IMG]

    Modded (as above), old pads -
    [​IMG]

    Repositioned many times and generally got fairly consistent measures. Doesn't sound as dark as it looks above 5k, if anything sounds a bit airier up top without the front foam (or maybe the transients are just a bit more incisive, which makes it feel livelier in the treble). A bit more forward at 3k, which was expected. Less midbass vs stock, but extension looks to be ever so slightly improved. Very pleased with this result.
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2020
  19. Biodegraded

    Biodegraded Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    May 28, 2017
    Likes Received:
    3,949
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Vancouver BC
    Hoping I'm not interrupting @E_Schaaf 's flow by revisiting an old topic - Yaxi pads on 6xx:

    [​IMG]

    The blue curve is Purr1n's measurement of a stock HD6XX, I think on his V2 coupler, for reference. The red curve is with stock pads on my flat-plate coupler (pretty close up to 6 kHz, then up to 5 dB higher through the treble), and the green curve is with the Yaxi pads that have generated mostly unfavourable impressions here. I've approximately matched my measurements through the upper mids and treble to highlight the relative effect lower down.

    Listening, I concur with @Lyander 's description earlier in this thread: bass is exaggerated & muddy; mids are crippled, male vocals and piano in particular having no life; imaging is gone. If your standard of music is how you'd hear it in a crowded nightclub you might call these an improvement. But otherwise not.

    Disclaimer: I didn't pay for these.
     
    Philimon, FlySweep, Jinxy245 and 3 others like this.
  20. Ryanr1987

    Ryanr1987 Facebook Friend

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2015
    Likes Received:
    181
    Dislikes Received:
    11
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    UK
    I had a new HD650 delivered the other day, because you know... you buy it you sell it, it becomes an obsession and your mind plays tricks on you, so you buy it again. I wanted a comfy phone I can use at night at lower volumes so I could hear my 8 week old son kicking off and due to the HD650's upper mids, they stay in focus at lower volumes.

    These are the made in Romania with the slight change in build. I like how these are nicer to grip, a small change but one for the better. Running through my SDAC + Asgard 2, call it my comfort rig, I've had rigs superior but non as musical and most of all, price is palatable.

    I don't know if it's because I've just been listening to my LCD-2F for weeks but they do sound a bit more shouty than my previous pair, I've seen the measurements of the "weird" batch" I'm pretty certain these are not out of that batch as they sound fairly smooth compared to what that batch measurements would suggest. I do find like many others HD650'S take time to soften up due to the pads.

    I've just been listening back to back with my LCD-2F(Made in 2017 just before the change in headband so newest driver revision with 6 fazors)
    Just been writing some impressions so thought I'd share for those who've never heard both together. Now bear in mind I do like things warm and easy going so the chain I run them off leans towards that.

    This HD650 is cleaner, more immediate, sharper sounding than the LCD-2F. The 2F does sound more hefty in the bass, impact is in the HD650's favour however as it has more leading edge in general so it adds to being a more hard hitting phone to me. The 2F doesn't necessarily sound cleaner than it does just more extended in the bass. I've always found the HD650 a fairly clean headphone, very underrated even stock. The 2F in typical Audeze fashion tends to have this lushness over everything which stop it sounding totally clean, like I've taken some Zapains or Prozac for my state buddies.bit woozy sounding, acquired taste but those who like Audeze enjoy it's sound. It's like the Nighthawk in that once you hear past it's flavour you start hearing the technical aspects and it is very resolving, musical headphone. The HD650 is more clinical, sounding than this LCD-2F. We all know the upper mid difference here, mids stand out on the 650's with the hyper focus, slight nuances being more obvious, with the right tube amp adding that spacious, lush goodness vocals can sound gorgeous. The HD650 to me sounds best from a good transformer coupled amp or OTL like the Icon HP8, Night Blues, Elise or for those on a budget the Val 2. I will say despite me thinking the HD650 is the slightly more detailed and resolving headphone I do enjoy the LCD-2 more as it leans towards my taste of Lush and liquid smooth.



    People for years always say the LCD-2 is the upgrade path to the HD650 but nothing is in my opinion, only side grades. I've always found the LCD-2 that headphone you listen to if you want that old school sound with great sub bass and the HD650 is that headphone that does everything so well, I like how it plays with amps for than anything, I find the LCD-2 gives you limited options and you can achieve it's potential rather early where as the HD650 always has more to give.


    Compared to my old HD650, form memory it shares the same FR, just has more aggressive spots, it's for sure less warm, but it still has that great timbre and tonal balance, it just sounds a bit snappier, less refined due to those spots but arguably has better access to it's strengths. Curious how these are after the pad break in. I always keep multiple headphones around to avoid getting too used to a signature which results in the magical burn in comments...

    I'm sure people have heard impressions left to right since it's 2020 but can never have too much impressions and data. Really just wanted an excuse to write again if I'm honest!
     

Share This Page