• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required. There are many reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

Hifiman Ananda Nano Headphone Review

Rate this headphone:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 79 40.5%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 88 45.1%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 19 9.7%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 9 4.6%

  • Total voters
    195

Ken Tajalli

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 8, 2021
Messages
2,200
Likes
1,980
Location
London UK
Same. I touch them by accident when wearing the headphones sometimes, and they make a very irritating sound.
this was my simple Mod.
you can first try something similar on the outside to see if it works for you.
Edition_XS-Modded-1.jpg
 

IAtaman

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Mar 29, 2021
Messages
2,444
Likes
4,304
All correct.
However, the "machine" achieves a better compliance with the target.
It has to do with the regression slope i.e. the machine fully compensates for the LF while the trough at 10kHz remains untouched producing a steeper slope resulting in a marginally lower score.
Anyways the scores are close enough to make no difference but the subjective impressions are likely to be different...

Let me show you how to achieve a better score:
Just remove 2dB from the LF compensation of the first EQ, et voila!
Score: with less bass than the target (the only change) 92.4 from 89.8.

View attachment 361493
Yes, it looks like it is the slope that makes the difference, however I am not so sure if it is the 10K trough that is the issue here. Amir did not fill that hole either. I think since you both did not fill that, and Amir put less bass, his slope came out to be flatter. Nonetheless, a win is a win :)
 

Koeitje

Major Contributor
Joined
Oct 10, 2019
Messages
2,314
Likes
3,986
I guess my post lacked clarity :)

That was exactly @InfiniteJester his point.
He used my plots which were not done on an industry standard fixture and at a lower SPL.
Hence my post of the HE400SE measurements done by Amir under equal circumstances showing what InfiniteJester stated that not all hifiman have such (high) distortion.
Yeah, I noticed I could interpret it in two ways ;)
 

bodhi

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Nov 11, 2022
Messages
1,044
Likes
1,516
Yet another Hifiman into the usual "not interesting at all"-category. I'm sure it gets decent enough reviews elsewhere and sells a lot of units though.
 

Ahmonge

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 30, 2022
Messages
230
Likes
222
Location
Valencia, Spain
One more reason to keep my Anandas from 2020.
 

tikky

Member
Joined
May 5, 2021
Messages
46
Likes
35
I own a pair of Nanos and five more expensive Hifiman models as well. All of these egg-shaped Hifiman's distortion measurements look poor, right? This cannot be a coincidence but rather a measurement error. Because when you do not wear them and just hold and crank the volume, it sounds terrible, and you only hear nothing but distortion, rattle, etc. But the moment you wear them, the distortion is gone, completely. By reading the listening experience of Amir, he cannot tell if he hears the distortion or not. As an audio engineer in the industry with almost 30 years of experience, I can easily tell if there is any significant distortion that renders them useless. There is not. I am wearing them at the moment and conducting some scientific distortion tests. I do design and code some distortion, and saturation software as well.

That distortion measurement could be a measurement error of the rig due to a single driver's measurements with a poor fit. I have very large headphones collection from Audeze to Focal, Sennheiser, IEMS, Audio Technica, AKG, etc., and Hifiman's egg-shaped headphones are the only ones that sound awful when you just hold them without wearing them. For example, Sundaras are pretty fine, and HE400SE is fine just holding them. I don't know the reason; it could be the design, but there is nothing wrong with case distortion. The nanometer diaphragm is thinner than your peeling skin after a sunbathe.

The spatial quality is also very good for the price. Most open-backs have similar-looking measurements in group delay compared to closed-backs and IEMs.

With EQ, the Ananda Nano becomes a monster. I can crank them up to unbearable high volumes with no issue on my RME, Topping, SMSL, and SPL amp rigs. While I am writing this, I'm actually wearing them just to make sure.
 
Last edited:

Ken Tajalli

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 8, 2021
Messages
2,200
Likes
1,980
Location
London UK
. All of these egg-shaped Hifiman's distortion measurements look poor, right? This cannot be a coincidence but rather a measurement error. Because when you do not wear them and just hold and crank the volume, it sounds terrible, and you only hear nothing but distortion, rattle, etc. But the moment you wear them, the distortion is gone,
I beg to differ. The distortion was quite audible to me, that's why I tried to fix it, well couldn't completely. Another reason why all egg-shaped Hifimans have similar distortion patterns, could be the egg-shaped earcups and the grills Hifiman employs, you know . . ., the common denominator!
That distortion measurement could be a measurement error of the rig due to a single driver's measurements with a poor fit. I have very large headphones collection from Audeze to Focal, Sennheiser, IEMS, Audio Technica, AKG, etc., and Hifiman's egg-shaped headphones are the only ones that sound awful when you just hold them without wearing them. For example, Sundaras are pretty fine, and HE400SE is fine just holding them. I don't know the reason; it could be the design, but there is nothing wrong with case distortion. The nanometer diaphragm is thinner than your peeling skin after a sunbathe.
I have measured the Edition XS, Sundaras, Audeze LCD XCs and LCD Xs on my humble rig, all are single driver planar headphones. The Audeze's were practically distortion free, Sundara's not too bad, and the EDXS's had similar distortion patterns to Anandas, albeit a little higher in frequency if memory serves.
The spatial quality is also very good for the price. Most open-backs have similar-looking measurements in group delay compared to closed-backs and IEMs.
With EQ, the Ananda Nano becomes a monster. I can crank them up to unbearable high volumes with no issue on my RME, Topping, SMSL, and SPL amp rigs. While I am writing this, I'm actually wearing them just to make sure.
Don't get me wrong, the Sundaras sounded pretty good, the EDXS's were wonderful, for the money, I can not pick a better sounding headphone. Very enjoyable, with an out of head imagery, loved them.
The only thing was, that bit of screechy hardness to the sound. I did manage to fix the problem somewhat, but not fully.
 

tikky

Member
Joined
May 5, 2021
Messages
46
Likes
35
I beg to differ. The distortion was quite audible to me, that's why I tried to fix it, well couldn't completely. Another reason why all egg-shaped Hifimans have similar distortion patterns, could be the egg-shaped earcups and the grills Hifiman employs, you know . . ., the common denominator!

I have measured the Edition XS, Sundaras, Audeze LCD XCs and LCD Xs on my humble rig, all are single driver planar headphones. The Audeze's were practically distortion free, Sundara's not too bad, and the EDXS's had similar distortion patterns to Anandas, albeit a little higher in frequency if memory serves.

Don't get me wrong, the Sundaras sounded pretty good, the EDXS's were wonderful, for the money, I can not pick a better sounding headphone. Very enjoyable, with an out of head imagery, loved them.
The only thing was, that bit of screechy hardness to the sound. I did manage to fix the problem somewhat, but not fully.

I agree. the Egg-Shape design is hit or miss depending on the head shape of the person. The shape must fit the snag otherwise the experience is affected. They could easily go with a classic round shape to not risk their technology. I like my Sundara, but I prefer Nanos for example, as it fits better than Sundara, and sounds better too with faster decay and sustain from the driver. Audeze is round-shaped., so there is no risk there but I won't be wearing 600+ gram headphones and working on audio daily basis. I was trying to point out that when there is a struggle to fit when measuring headphones, I would simply not share or skip measuring. There is definitely inconsistency happening here.
 

solderdude

Grand Contributor
Joined
Jul 21, 2018
Messages
16,216
Likes
37,044
Location
The Neitherlands
Below the Edition XS (lets agree that most egg-shaped hifiman models measure quite similar) distortion measured with a good seal (pads lightly pressed onto a pinna- and ear-canal-less flat-plate fixture.

dist-l-percent-xs.png


This measurement is made at 90dB SPL and thus lower in level than the lowest sweep from Amir.

Below is the CSD of the XS
csd-ed-xs.png


There is a substantial lack of damping, even when mounted with a good seal.

Below the HE6 (4-screw)
he6-csd.png

Here we also see the ringing around 3kHz but better damped.

Below the Audeze LCD-2 (also a planar) as a comparison.
lcd2-cl-csd.png


It seems there is definitely 'something' going on with hifiman even with a good seal.
 

tikky

Member
Joined
May 5, 2021
Messages
46
Likes
35
I was just checking the RTINGS measurements. WHD Looks similar to me against Audeze. I am not sure what these guys are doing wrong. Less than 0.1%.


anandaaudeze.png


Ananda vs. HE400SE

anandahe400ae.png
 

InfiniteJester

Active Member
Joined
Feb 2, 2024
Messages
184
Likes
156
I was just checking the RTINGS measurements. WHD Looks similar to me against Audeze. I am not sure what these guys are doing wrong. Less than 0.1%.


View attachment 361536

Ananda vs. HE400SE

View attachment 361537

Weighted harmonic distortion almost seems to be a made up thing. Have you seen that distortion is usually lower at higher volumes in their graphs? How is that even possible?

It happens again

1712321415054.png

and again...
1712321441902.png

and again...
1712321466823.png


Until someone explains to me why their "overall amount of harmonic distortion produced by the headphones at 90dB SPL" is consistently higher than their "overall amount of harmonic distortion produced by the headphones at 100dB SPL", my trust in their distortion measurements is 0.
 

staticV3

Master Contributor
Joined
Aug 29, 2019
Messages
8,444
Likes
13,646
Weighted harmonic distortion almost seems to be a made up thing. Have you seen that distortion is usually lower at higher volumes in their graphs? How is that even possible?

It happens again

View attachment 361538
and again...
View attachment 361539
and again...
View attachment 361540

Until someone explains to me why their "overall amount of harmonic distortion produced by the headphones at 90dB SPL" is consistently higher than their "overall amount of harmonic distortion produced by the headphones at 100dB SPL", my trust in their distortion measurements is 0.
rtings have explanations for their methodology directly on their own website.
Why do we have to explain it to you?
 

InfiniteJester

Active Member
Joined
Feb 2, 2024
Messages
184
Likes
156
rtings have explanations for their methodology directly on their own website.
Why do we have to explain it to you?

How adversarial. I never said that you or anyone has to explain it to me. I'm saying that I will change my mind if someone explains how this is a reliable way to measure things.

I won't trust the measurements until I understand them enough to pass judgement. That's all.

If you read what I wrote, you will find that I, indeed, literally quoted part of their explanation.

If you think that this is enough to account for apparently paradoxical results, you can explain it to me if you wish.

1000061831.jpg

1000061838.jpg

Or don't, if you wish not.

But I don't see any reason to argue here.
 

solderdude

Grand Contributor
Joined
Jul 21, 2018
Messages
16,216
Likes
37,044
Location
The Neitherlands
They apply weighting to their distortion measurements and thus the lower frequencies are given less weight because they are less audible.
That will work with pure sines but in the case of full range drivers having a lot of bass distortion modulates the mids and highs (due to compression) so the WHD is not totally honest.

That said, there will be no weighting around 3kHz so the numbers should be the same in that part of the frequency range.
The discrepancy between Rtings and other measurements (at 100dB) is rather big so most likely the method used differs as well.
Possibly the resonances in that area have something to do with the higher reported distortion by Amir and me (and we use different methods as well)
 

tikky

Member
Joined
May 5, 2021
Messages
46
Likes
35
the test method could be different and "made up" but they apply exactly the same test on both headphones. As long as the test conditions are the same and the results are similar, we can easily tell that the distortion is somewhat similar. Just don't trust the test but the conditions. Amir's test conditions are not the same as he had issues with the fit. Also, Rtings is using a head simulator which is I guess more realistic. GRAS isn’t shaped like a normal human head and tilted earpads can leak the sound, when there is leakage egg-shaped earcups sound distorted.

What I am trying to tell is also, to add 10db 100hz low-shelf to HD650 for example and do the same for Ananda Nano, and see which one handle it better at higher volumes. HD650 lowshelf for Harman renders the 650 useless to me, the same goes for Philips and Beyerdynamics as well. They may have "less" distortion as they are, but they don't eat the EQ adjustments very well, unlike Nanos or Audeze.

Amir already said he had problems with the fit during measurements but listening tests he could not spot the distortion. This should tell a lot. That's exactly how I hear.
 
Last edited:

InfiniteJester

Active Member
Joined
Feb 2, 2024
Messages
184
Likes
156
They apply weighting to their distortion measurements and thus the lower frequencies are given less weight because they are less audible.
That will work with pure sines but in the case of full range drivers having a lot of bass distortion modulates the mids and highs (due to compression) so the WHD is not totally honest.

That said, there will be no weighting around 3kHz so the numbers should be the same in that part of the frequency range.
The discrepancy between Rtings and other measurements (at 100dB) is rather big so most likely the method used differs as well.
Possibly the resonances in that area have something to do with the higher reported distortion by Amir and me (and we use different methods as well)

Thank you. I understand all of that. The only thing that I cannot comprehend is how their system indicates less distortion at higher volumes.
 
Top Bottom