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HE-300 vs HD598 vs HD558 With Foam Mod ?

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Posted · Original PosterOP

when it comes to audio i trust this forum recommendations over pretty much any other sites ..

so i'v been looking for an open design headphone for FPS gaming/music 

note i'v never owned an open cans before so this will be my first

and i came across these 3

 

budget : 200$

source : FiiO E10

music : technical metal stuff , some DNB stuff but don't worry about the base side of the headphone since i have the DT770 so

gaming : CS GO , BF3 , BF4 , COD4

warranty and customer service : i don't care about it 

 

 

so which one of these have the biggest sound stage and which one would you recommend

NOTE : i really really hate the look of the HD598 

 

 

Links : 

HiFiMan HE-300 : http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00667F7OK/

HD598 : http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0042A8CW2/

HD558 : http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004FEEY9A/

HD558 Foam Mod : 

 

 

one more thing .. can the FiiO E10 drive high end headphones like the HD650 , HE-400 

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The Fiio E10 will drive the HE-400 but not the HD 650 because of sensitivity.

 

For gaming, the HD 558 is a good option. You can dick around with foam if you want, all it does is make it sound like the 598, which is basically the same headphone to begin with. 518 should be considered because it is the best value of all the HD 5x8 series.

 

Of course, for open phones there are also the Beyerdynamic DT 880/990 Pro, AKG K612 Pro, Audio-Technica ATH-AD500X to name a few.

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The Fiio E10 will not the HD 650 because of sensitivity.

Woah wut. Dat gain switch tho. Even if you don't trust me about the Syba DAC, the E10's gain switch gives plenty juice for even 250ohm DT990's by multiple accounts.

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Posted · Original PosterOP

The Fiio E10 will drive the HE-400 but not the HD 650 because of sensitivity.

 

For gaming, the HD 558 is a good option. You can dick around with foam if you want, all it does is make it sound like the 598, which is basically the same headphone to begin with. 518 should be considered because it is the best value of all the HD 5x8 series.

 

Of course, for open phones there are also the Beyerdynamic DT 880/990 Pro, AKG K612 Pro, Audio-Technica ATH-AD500X to name a few.

 

will the foam mod for the hd558 give me a bigger sound stage ? 

and how dose the 558 compare to the HE-400 in terms of sound stage and fidelity ?

 

as for the DT880/990 i wanna try a new brand since i already have the DT770 and i'm not a big fan of Beyerdynamics cables and i would like a detachable cable 

and the K612 and the AD500X and the AD700X i don't like the headband design

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Wait2, which one of the Hifiman are you considering for? HE-300 or HE-400? HE-300 is the silver one, HE-400 the navy blue one. They really differ, HE-300 uses dynamic drivers, HE-400 uses planar drivers. HE-300 got brighter sounds, HE-400 got warmer, darker tone.

 

Both can be drived well with the E10, but HE-400 won't get to its optimal performance with the E10 only. HE-400 is the main headphone I'm using now, and I have E10 (used it in the past, but upgraded now), so I know firsthand. I went as far as getting a Lepai speaker amp to drive the HE-400 to 'squeeze the last drop' from my HE-400. Now, however, I've upgraded to the T1 DAC, and it's enough using only that, without the Lepai. 

 

Again, not saying it sounds bad with only the E10, but it could sound better with additional amp. 

 

HE-300 however, being a dynamic driver HP, should run just fine with just the E10, in other words, no need to use it with an additional amp. 

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I've had both HE-300, HE-400 and HD555 and HD650. All are great headphones in their own ways.

 

HE-300 and HD650 have a very similar sound signature. With minor differences in the bass region. I really like them both, but for comfort, I would probably stick with the HD650.

 

HE-400, is not as creatip123 says less bright than the HE-300, on the contrary it is a lot brighter. And they are not at all dark, not darker than HE-300 and HD650. Not sure if you had something stuck in your ears when you listened to them. HE-400 are really easy to drive, the same goes for the HE-300. HD650 are 300 Ohm which requires a bit more umph. So you would probably need an amp for the HD650.

 

I found the HE-400 really great for Metal, however I liked the HE-300 a lot more for doom, sludge and slow and really bassy stuff.

 

I've had the Fiio E10 and E11 at their price points they are pretty decent, but I don't feel like I got everything out of my headphones with them. It was not super detailed. Something like the Aune X1 Pro (or whatever it is called nowadays) or the Audinst MX1 or O2/ODAC are a lot better choices, but are also more expensive. 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Wait2, which one of the Hifiman are you considering for? HE-300 or HE-400? HE-300 is the silver one, HE-400 the navy blue one. They really differ, HE-300 uses dynamic drivers, HE-400 uses planar drivers. HE-300 got brighter sounds, HE-400 got warmer, darker tone.

 

Both can be drived well with the E10, but HE-400 won't get to its optimal performance with the E10 only. HE-400 is the main headphone I'm using now, and I have E10 (used it in the past, but upgraded now), so I know firsthand. I went as far as getting a Lepai speaker amp to drive the HE-400 to 'squeeze the last drop' from my HE-400. Now, however, I've upgraded to the T1 DAC, and it's enough using only that, without the Lepai. 

 

Again, not saying it sounds bad with only the E10, but it could sound better with additional amp. 

 

HE-300 however, being a dynamic driver HP, should run just fine with just the E10, in other words, no need to use it with an additional amp. 

 

i know the HE-300 and HE-400 are completely different drivers but i was asking if the E10 can drive the HE-400 just in case i change my mind and deiced to save more and go for the HE-400

 

 

I've had both HE-300, HE-400 and HD555 and HD650. All are great headphones in their own ways.

 

HE-300 and HD650 have a very similar sound signature. With minor differences in the bass region. I really like them both, but for comfort, I would probably stick with the HD650.

 

HE-400, is not as creatip123 says less bright than the HE-300, on the contrary it is a lot brighter. And they are not at all dark, not darker than HE-300 and HD650. Not sure if you had something stuck in your ears when you listened to them. HE-400 are really easy to drive, the same goes for the HE-300. HD650 are 300 Ohm which requires a bit more umph. So you would probably need an amp for the HD650.

 

I found the HE-400 really great for Metal, however I liked the HE-300 a lot more for doom, sludge and slow and really bassy stuff.

 

I've had the Fiio E10 and E11 at their price points they are pretty decent, but I don't feel like I got everything out of my headphones with them. It was not super detailed. Something like the Aune X1 Pro (or whatever it is called nowadays) or the Audinst MX1 or O2/ODAC are a lot better choices, but are also more expensive. 

 

good info 

how would you compare the sound stage and  fidelity of HE-300 vs HD558 ? and which one would you recommend for FPS gaming and technical metal stuff like Necrophagist , Obscura ?

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I just bought the HD 558 literally 2 days ago, and so far i'm loving them. They are the first 'proper' pair of headphones I have ever owned though =P

 

Just performed the foam mod after reading your post (was planning to do it anyway) and it definitely opens the soundstage up a little more, but it's not a huge difference. 

 

Can't say anything about the other phones you've mentioned, but hopefully this'll be worth something.

 

Goodluck =3

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Posted · Original PosterOP

I just bought the HD 558 literally 2 days ago, and so far i'm loving them. They are the first 'proper' pair of headphones I have ever owned though =P

 

Just performed the foam mod after reading your post (was planning to do it anyway) and it definitely opens the soundstage up a little more, but it's not a huge difference. 

 

Can't say anything about the other phones you've mentioned, but hopefully this'll be worth something.

 

Goodluck =3

 

thanks ..

let me know what you think about them in couple of days and how do they preform in gaming 

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Woah wut. Dat gain switch tho. Even if you don't trust me about the Syba DAC, the E10's gain switch gives plenty juice for even 250ohm DT990's by multiple accounts.

 

I don't trust you about anything, angled driver fanboi.

 

But as it turned out, I did get mixed up. So much for forhamming at 2am.

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I've had both HE-300, HE-400 and HD555 and HD650. All are great headphones in their own ways.

 

HE-300 and HD650 have a very similar sound signature. With minor differences in the bass region. I really like them both, but for comfort, I would probably stick with the HD650.

 

HE-400, is not as creatip123 says less bright than the HE-300, on the contrary it is a lot brighter. And they are not at all dark, not darker than HE-300 and HD650. Not sure if you had something stuck in your ears when you listened to them. HE-400 are really easy to drive, the same goes for the HE-300. HD650 are 300 Ohm which requires a bit more umph. So you would probably need an amp for the HD650.

 

I found the HE-400 really great for Metal, however I liked the HE-300 a lot more for doom, sludge and slow and really bassy stuff.

 

I've had the Fiio E10 and E11 at their price points they are pretty decent, but I don't feel like I got everything out of my headphones with them. It was not super detailed. Something like the Aune X1 Pro (or whatever it is called nowadays) or the Audinst MX1 or O2/ODAC are a lot better choices, but are also more expensive. 

 

HE-400 took quite a bit of a dip in the higher-mid frequencies. It got clear highs, this I agree, but I wouldn't say that it's bright, because of that 'missing' frequencies. The missing frequencies are very discernible when I compare it with the AKG Q701. From the same songs, I could hear some voices/instruments that I couldn't really distinguish with the HE-400. From the frequency graph of both headroom's version and innerfidelity's version, there's quite a wide valley between 1kHz and 6kHz, dropping as far as 15dB, then spike up again between 6kHz and 10kHz, making the highs very discernible (because of the spike)

 

Only auditioned HE-300 for a while, back when I was picking which one to buy, the 300 or 400, ended up getting the 400. 300 got more distinguishable higher-mids. 300's higher-mids got more 'reasonable' fluctuations between 1kHz and 6kHz in the graph. I guess that's why I said 300 is brighter than the 400. 

 

 

i know the HE-300 and HE-400 are completely different drivers but i was asking if the E10 can drive the HE-400 just in case i change my mind and deiced to save more and go for the HE-400

 

Yes, the E10 can drive the 400 up to loud level (most probably too loud for normal hearing). But I stand with my opinion, add another adequate amp, and the HE400 could sound better (not louder). It sounds good (not bad) with E10, but could be better.

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Posted · Original PosterOP

HE-400 took quite a bit of a dip in the higher-mid frequencies. It got clear highs, this I agree, but I wouldn't say that it's bright, because of that 'missing' frequencies. The missing frequencies are very discernible when I compare it with the AKG Q701. From the same songs, I could hear some voices/instruments that I couldn't really distinguish with the HE-400. From the frequency graph of both headroom's version and innerfidelity's version, there's quite a wide valley between 1kHz and 6kHz, dropping as far as 15dB, then spike up again between 6kHz and 10kHz, making the highs very discernible (because of the spike)

 

Only auditioned HE-300 for a while, back when I was picking which one to buy, the 300 or 400, ended up getting the 400. 300 got more distinguishable higher-mids. 300's higher-mids got more 'reasonable' fluctuations between 1kHz and 6kHz in the graph. I guess that's why I said 300 is brighter than the 400. 

 

 

 

Yes, the E10 can drive the 400 up to loud level (most probably too loud for normal hearing). But I stand with my opinion, add another adequate amp, and the HE400 could sound better (not louder). It sounds good (not bad) with E10, but could be better.

 

great info thanks man

what about the sound stage ? 

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great info thanks man

what about the sound stage ? 

 

Quite good. I use it for gaming daily. Not as wide as AD700, but still good. Get a pair of velour pads. Original one costs 10 bucks on their official store. The velour pads are thicker than standard pleather pads. Definitely harder than the pleather, might need some times to get used to. Velours give a bit more space between your ears and the drivers, giving more sense of wideness, in exchange of some (very little) loss of bass.

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Woah wut. Dat gain switch tho. Even if you don't trust me about the Syba DAC, the E10's gain switch gives plenty juice for even 250ohm DT990's by multiple accounts.

 

Hmm:

 

 

At the other extreme, even set to high gain, the E10 is marginal for having enough output for many popular full size cans like the Sennheiser HD650/600. If you listen at “live” levels to highly dynamic music the E10 can easily clip with such cans. For headphones that require even more output, like the popular 600 ohm Beyers, several AKGs, HiFiMan planars, etc., you’re likely to be disappointed.

 

http://nwavguy.blogspot.com/2012/01/fiio-e10-dac.html

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Lol @ "live levels" and "dynamic music" - Everyone knows that guy is a hack anyways.

 

 

 

 

 

I always used it in low gain mode.

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Lol @ "live levels" and "dynamic music" - Everyone knows that guy is a hack anyways.

 

 

 

 

 

I always used it in low gain mode.

4 shure. O2 is a lie.

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My fiio e5 has less juice than an e10 I'm pretty sure, and I'm using it with my LCD-2's right now, it does a fine job imo, certainly enough to make my ears hurt.

Doesn't sound as good as my o2+odac, but it's not really that bad.

 

(i even used my he-500's with my e5 previous to getting rid of them, and it did a fine job with those as well, so I'm sure he-400 / hd650 would be fine)


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My fiio e5 has less juice than an e10 I'm pretty sure, and I'm using it with my LCD-2's right now, it does a fine job imo, certainly enough to make my ears hurt.

Doesn't sound as good as my o2+odac, but it's not really that bad.

 

(i even used my he-500's with my e5 previous to getting rid of them, and it did a fine job with those as well, so I'm sure he-400 / hd650 would be fine)

 

Are you plugging the E5 to the headphone out of the PC and/or other music-producing devices? Because if you do, that's actually using 2 serial amps, amp from the device + amp from E5. 

 

When I plug an E6 to E10's line out, or ipad's line out dock (I think line out = 2V pre-amp out), I can get decent volume, but certainly not ears-hurting volume.

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I'm in the same boat, OP. I bought NVX XPT100s as replacement to ATH-M50s. Liked them a lot but still wanted to try open cans. Bought HD558s, loved them. Can't really go back to closed cans. Saw a review on HE-300s. Bought them a day ago. Just got them 30 mins ago. Listening to them now. I really can't decide. 

 

So hard. The HE-300s definitely seem more bassy but not so much that it overpowers mids and highs. I like the construction better on the HE-300s. BUT, the cord though..THE CORD! It's atrocious, holy shit don't get me started. It's stiff, it's heavy, there when the cord hits another part of the cord it's loud and it's annoying, you will hear it. It's white and ugly. The cord screws into left and right channel. Yes, it screws in, doesn't plug in. 

I-i don't even know.

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I-i don't even know.

I feel for you. It always baffles me why companies can't get something simple as a cable correct.

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I'm in the same boat, OP. I bought NVX XPT100s as replacement to ATH-M50s. Liked them a lot but still wanted to try open cans. Bought HD558s, loved them. Can't really go back to closed cans. Saw a review on HE-300s. Bought them a day ago. Just got them 30 mins ago. Listening to them now. I really can't decide. 

 

So hard. The HE-300s definitely seem more bassy but not so much that it overpowers mids and highs. I like the construction better on the HE-300s. BUT, the cord though..THE CORD! It's atrocious, holy shit don't get me started. It's stiff, it's heavy, there when the cord hits another part of the cord it's loud and it's annoying, you will hear it. It's white and ugly. The cord screws into left and right channel. Yes, it screws in, doesn't plug in. 

I-i don't even know.

 

The HE-300 uses white braided cable, if I'm not mistaken? I'm actually thinking of getting that wire as a replacement. HE-400's cable is big, black (#noracist  :D ), heavy as hell. It looks very durable, can withstand lots of abuse, but still....

 

They use SMC connectors, the kind used in networking devices. It's actually a good thing though, the screws. You won't yank it off by accident, and you wont loosen it over time by too much of plugging-unplugging, like a 3,5mm jack would. I fiddled around with the screws on first times, now it takes me less than 5 seconds to screw on-screw off the connectors. I think I can make a video of the easy way to screw it on/off, if anybody is interested.

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The HE-300 uses white braided cable, if I'm not mistaken? I'm actually thinking of getting that wire as a replacement. HE-400's cable is big, black (#noracist  :D ), heavy as hell. It looks very durable, can withstand lots of abuse, but still....

 

They use SMC connectors, the kind used in networking devices. It's actually a good thing though, the screws. You won't yank it off by accident, and you wont loosen it over time by too much of plugging-unplugging, like a 3,5mm jack would. I fiddled around with the screws on first times, now it takes me less than 5 seconds to screw on-screw off the connectors. I think I can make a video of the easy way to screw it on/off, if anybody is interested.

If you don't mind very loud microphonics then the cable isn't that bad. Any slight movement will cause you to hear vibrations. That's my main complaint. 

 

I actually don't think the screws are a good idea. If you were to yank it, it would put pressure on headphone. If they were just unpluggable and for example, you stand up and the cable is stuck onto your chair or whatever, the cable just pops out and there is no damage to the internals. Since these don't just pop out, you stand up, cable gets stuck somewhere, headphones get yanked, pressure on the internals, headphones fall off. Really don't see any benefit to this screw-in mechanism. 

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If you don't mind very loud microphonics then the cable isn't that bad. Any slight movement will cause you to hear vibrations. That's my main complaint. 

 

I actually don't think the screws are a good idea. If you were to yank it, it would put pressure on headphone. If they were just unpluggable and for example, you stand up and the cable is stuck onto your chair or whatever, the cable just pops out and there is no damage to the internals. Since these don't just pop out, you stand up, cable gets stuck somewhere, headphones get yanked, pressure on the internals, headphones fall off. Really don't see any benefit to this screw-in mechanism. 

 

Well, not really. I've opened the HE-400 and saw the inside. I've even seen the sound producing planar diaphragm (which I strongly not recommend anyone to do, taking the driver apart  :D ). Assuming it's about the same design with the 300, the male SMC connectors (the part that's on the each side of the cups) are bolted tight to the case, which is hard dense plastic. Any force exerted to the connectors are applied to the case, not any internal cables or parts. You'll need a big amount of yanking force to break the connector and/or the case. 

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Well, not really. I've opened the HE-400 and saw the inside. I've even seen the sound producing planar diaphragm (which I strongly not recommend anyone to do, taking the driver apart  :D ). Assuming it's about the same design with the 300, the male SMC connectors (the part that's on the each side of the cups) are bolted tight to the case, which is hard dense plastic. Any force exerted to the connectors are applied to the case, not any internal cables or parts. You'll need a big amount of yanking force to break the connector and/or the case. 

Oh, well, that's good to know. Thanks.

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