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Sennheiser HD 800 Redux


The Monkey
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It is not so much that they are discontinued, as that they were not recontinued. The idea is the come up with a design that I like, make a small run, sell them, and move on to something else. There are so many circuits to explore that doing the same thing over and over is just not that interesting. For what it's worth, I just ordered a run of transformers from Cinemag that should be here some time in late January. Hopefully completed amps will follow not too long after that. :)

 

You tease.  :dance:

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Well i'm glad i gave these another shot. Really enjoying these and don't really see the need to mod them though i have to sort me a balanced cable. How much harder are those pin's to solder compared to the hifiman's? I know i can reterminate the stock cable but i want to leave that one untouched.

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Well i'm glad i gave these another shot. Really enjoying these and don't really see the need to mod them though i have to sort me a balanced cable. How much harder are those pin's to solder compared to the hifiman's? I know i can reterminate the stock cable but i want to leave that one untouched.

 

I'm a soldering noob and would like to know as well. I need to order some cheap mogami cable or something and some connectors to make a balanced cable. Any preferred vendor/model for the hd800 connector also?

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Has any one heard this HD800 "ultra" mod?

 

http://www.stefanaudioart.com/shop/stefan-audioart-hd800-ultra-mod/

 

I just emailed them and asked them to send a loaner to Tyll for measurements.  If they're really confident in what they're doing, they should be thrilled to have the evidence documented for all to see.

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Well, it didn't take long to get shot down.  Here's the first part of his rather lengthy reply:

 

"Hello Nick,
 
Thank you for your email.
 
We do all our testing with our ears. 
 
I've been in this business for over 30 years and with all due respect to Tyll there is no instrument I'm aware of that can measure how good a certain headphone or component will sound.
 
Measurements do not and can not reveal the quality of the performance of a headphone/component and what the final outcome of the music sound like.
 
All that is necessary is to setup a headphone system with properly designed cables and vibration control and you will hear how a headphone or component truely sounds.
 
I've been educating users for over 10 years on how to for a lack of a better term "triple" the performance of their systems(s) via two extremely important variables in an audio/video system - properly designed cables and vibration control."
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What a load of bollocks  :horsey:

Obviously Sennheiser do it all with their ears too no measurement eh!

 

Quote from Web Site

"Every headphone mod we’ve come across on the market has been created by DIY individuals who operate on misguided notions. Their approach to adding materials to a headphone comes from their lack of knowledge of headphone design and the result yields degradation in the performance of the headphone which can be easily heard in a headphone system setup with properly designed cables and vibration control.

Key original internal and external parts of the HD800 headphones inhibit, distort and close-in the sound. The HD800 Ultra-mod is a proprietary process which entails removing specific parts from the stock HD800′s internal and external assembly, treating and remounting the drivers for optimal vibration control and replacing the driver mounting configuration with a Stefan AudioArt proprietary system."
 
So sennheiser haven't looked at and measured vibrations in the headphone? Today this stuff is designed and measured using sophisticated computer analysis so does SAA know if they really have eliminated or set up vibrations at other frequencies?  

 

 

Well, it didn't take long to get shot down.  Here's the first part of his rather lengthy reply:

 

"Hello Nick,
 
Thank you for your email.
 
We do all our testing with our ears. 
 
I've been in this business for over 30 years and with all due respect to Tyll there is no instrument I'm aware of that can measure how good a certain headphone or component will sound.
 
Measurements do not and can not reveal the quality of the performance of a headphone/component and what the final outcome of the music sound like.
 
All that is necessary is to setup a headphone system with properly designed cables and vibration control and you will hear how a headphone or component truely sounds.
 
I've been educating users for over 10 years on how to for a lack of a better term "triple" the performance of their systems(s) via two extremely important variables in an audio/video system - properly designed cables and vibration control."

 

Edited by complin
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I may decide to press the issue further.  If these mods do nothing but reduce distortion as claimed, there's no way they could measure any worse.  And even if the measurements don't pick up a difference, Tyll listens a lot too.  And I doubt there's anyone who's heard more attempts to mod the HD800s.

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They'll never send a pair on their own, someone would have to buy it and send it to Tyll.  As per a few posts above distortion is fairly easy to measure and if their magic process actually helps with that it'd be measurable.  Typical snake oil cable company bullshit.

 

Speaking of cables, holy hell are their cables expensive the "starting" price for each one is for the 4 ft cable.  Who the hell only needs a 4 ft headphone cable?  Fuckers.

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Wow, that's a new one I hadn't heard yet, "...for lack of a better term, 'triple'..."

 

Yeah, my penis is for lack of a better term, "triple" the performance...

 

The T-rex's arms are, for lack of a better term, "triple" the performance...

 

I'm going to start using that in front of everything.

 

This music is, for lack of a better term, awesome.

 

This movie is, for lack of a better term, the best.

 

What you're really doing is undermining your own vocabulary.

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I was told many years ago (dont know if its true) that at one point the Stefan Audio Art guy was making a living doing nothing but selling a HD600 cable  ???

 

years back i remember there were basically two popular options for hd6xx recables: the cardas cable and the stefan cable. and everyone regarded the stefan cable as the rolls royce of hd6xx cables. expensive, sure, but THE BEST.

 

then came along that twisty flesh colored cable by that other company and it was the best.

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Here's the response I sent to Stefan AudioArt James.  I tried to be nice, but I have yet to hear back from him.  Perhaps at some level, he knows that this mod is, for lack of a better term, not helpful.

 

"Thank you for the thorough reply James.

 
It looks like one of the primary benefits of this mod is a reduction in distortion, which is actually quite measurable.  But even if it didn't show up for some reason, Tyll has more experience listening to different HD800s than anyone else.  That includes just about every other mod of them.  If there's a change to the sound, he's more likely than anyone to hear it.
 
If you really are confident that the Ultra mod improves performance, why not send one to him for review?  The worst that could happen would be no measurable difference vs the stock HD800s.  But if the mod get's remotely close to "tripling" performance, then the improvement should be obvious when listening.  You'd then have quite a case to make against the value of measurements.
 
Please consider sending a loaner to Tyll for review.  Allowing this product to hold up to close scrutiny will open your business up to lot of new potential customers, myself included."
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years back i remember there were basically two popular options for hd6xx recables: the cardas cable and the stefan cable. and everyone regarded the stefan cable as the rolls royce of hd6xx cables. expensive, sure, but THE BEST.

 

then came along that twisty flesh colored cable by that other company and it was the best.

 

twisted flesh cable, where do I sign up?

 

Doesn't that thing develop a patina because the tubing isn't airtight? I was pretty amused when I saw pictures.

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