• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). There are daily reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

Hifiman HE-560 V4 Review (Planar Magnetic Headphone)

Rate this headphone:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 7 5.9%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 42 35.3%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 53 44.5%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 17 14.3%

  • Total voters
    119

amirm

Founder/Admin
Staff Member
CFO (Chief Fun Officer)
Joined
Feb 13, 2016
Messages
39,401
Likes
179,047
Location
Seattle Area
This is a review and detailed measurements of the Hifiman HE560 V4. It is on kind loan from a member. I think it is exclusive to Adorama (?) and costs US $899 but goes on sale for $260 or something like it.

The look is similar to other Hifiman headphones:
Hifiman HE560 V4 Review Open Back Planar Magnetic Headphone.jpg


Comfort was good with about average weight:
headphone weight database.png


Cups are symmetrical and round with diameter of 61mm and depth of 23mm.

The included cable is short and rather stiff, terminated with 3.5mm plugs so easy to replace.

Note: The measurements you are about to see are made using a standardized Gras 45C. Headphone measurements by definition are approximate and variable so don't be surprised if other measurements even if performed with the same fixtures as mine, differ in end results. Protocols vary such as headband pressure and averaging (which I don't do). As you will see, I confirm the approximate accuracy of the measurements using Equalization and listening tests. Ultimately headphone measurements are less exact than speakers mostly in bass and above a few kilohertz so keep that in mind as you read these tests. If you think you have an exact idea of a headphone performance, you are likely wrong!

The large cups made an easy job of mounting them on my fixture and getting good measurements on first try.

Hifiman HE-56 V4 Measurements
Let's start with our usual frequency response measurements:
Hifiman HE560 V4 Measurement Frequency Response Open Back Planar Magnetic Headphone.png


This is fairly typical Hifiman response with flat bass and droop above 1 kHz. The latter though is more than some others I have tested and is dissipating to see. It will not only impact tonality but also spatial effects. But overall not too bad.

Relative frequency response graph useful for development of EQ is:

Hifiman HE560 V4 Measurement Relative Frequency Response Open Back Planar Magnetic Headphone.png


Developing EQ should be simple given the shape of shortfalls.

Distortion is very low which is nice:
Hifiman HE560 V4 Measurement Relative Distortion Response Open Back Planar Magnetic Headphone.png



Hifiman HE560 V4 Measurement THD Distortion Response Open Back Planar Magnetic Headphone.png


Group delay is messy as is usually the case with these headphones:
Hifiman HE560 V4 Measurement Group Delay Open Back Planar Magnetic Headphone.png


Impedance as usual is flat and low:

Hifiman HE560 V4 Measurement Impedance Response Open Back Planar Magnetic Headphone.png


It does require fair bit of juice to get loud:

Most efficient open back headphone tested.png


You definitely need a good headphone amplifier to drive it.

Hifiman HE560 V4 Listening Tests and Equalization
Without equalization the sound is not bad. It sounds light on its feet due to lack of bass energy. I turned on my HE400i EQ and it instantly elevated the performance a few notches. I refined it more for the 560 response and landed with this:
Hifiman HE560 V4 Equalization EQ Parametric Open Back Planar Magnetic Headphone.png


Once there, spatial qualities were excellent and overall tonality very good.

Conclusions
I honestly can't keep track of why there are so many models in the hifiman lineup. What is here seems to have been tweaked just a bit in the wrong direction. Fortunately with low distortion, equalization can compensate. Once there though, I did not want to listen without it. So this means you need to have EQ with you in all of your uses which can be inconvenient if you use a platform that doesn't support.

Overall, I can't recommend the HE560 V4 at its retail price. Fully discounted it is not bad but there are better choices from the company at even lower costs (HE400SE). Still equalization does it a lot of good and with it, I can recommend it.

-----------
As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome.

Any donations are much appreciated using: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/
 

Attachments

  • Hifiman HE560 V4 Frequency Response ASR.zip
    23.9 KB · Views: 147

sweetchaos

Major Contributor
The Curator
Joined
Nov 29, 2019
Messages
2,879
Likes
8,003
Location
BC, Canada
To import this PEQ profile into 'Equalizer APO', use:
Preamp: -7.0 dB
Filter 1: ON PK Fc 20 Hz Gain 6.0 dB Q 1.0
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 37 Hz Gain 1.8 dB Q 1.0
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 1800 Hz Gain 7.0 dB Q 3.0
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 5870 Hz Gain -2.0 dB Q 5.0
Otherwise, see my PEQ guide.
..................................................................................................................
For those who don't have PEQ-capable app, and want to use GEQs instead:
See my GEQ guide for 10-band, 31-band, and 127-band GEQ profiles.
 

sweetchaos

Major Contributor
The Curator
Joined
Nov 29, 2019
Messages
2,879
Likes
8,003
Location
BC, Canada

solderdude

Grand Contributor
Joined
Jul 21, 2018
Messages
12,606
Likes
28,274
Location
The Neitherlands
index.php


Below the HE560 V1

he560-fr.png



and below the HE560 V2

fr-he560.png


For comparative reasons the HE400SE v2 ,which has a small treble peak the HE560 don't have but 4kHz is at a better level (hardness of the sound area)
fr-1.png



The looks of the V4 are very different from that of the V1 and V2 (also around $ 900)

he560.jpg
 
Last edited:

filo97s

Active Member
Joined
Feb 17, 2019
Messages
117
Likes
218
Location
Sestri Levante
Would be nice to see if they differ from older versions like the 560 V3 in THD (the one in teak with 2.5mm connectors, which I have)
Still, if you like the sound signature, I would say that the extremely low distortion is perceived here, it's a very very crisp headphone. One thing that I complain to HiFiman is its typical worst build quality to date among headphone makers. Everything is shit: the pads, the plasticky headband, the cups made out of fake wood, the cable, even the box where they came in... It's better a 130$ DT770 pro than this, construction-wise. And this annoys me since they cost well over 800$.
 

Harmonie

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
May 30, 2020
Messages
1,930
Likes
2,019
Location
France
I hate that Adomara does this....:mad:

Here's the regular advertised price:
View attachment 171977

Here's the actual price (just add ?emailprice=t to the end of the normal URL):
View attachment 171976

Oh look at that, savings of 75%...magic!
Most of you should know this by now, but for a few that don't...;)

Honestly I wasn't aware about such trick, merci !!!

I would now put ?emailprice=t in every url of any website and hope to get some 75% magic all year long ...
 

Jimbob54

Master Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Oct 25, 2019
Messages
9,343
Likes
12,099
index.php


Below the HE560 V1

he560-fr.png



and below the HE560 V2

fr-he560.png


For comparative reasons the HE400SE v2 ,which has a small treble peak the HE560 don't have but 4kHz is at a better level (hardness of the sound area)
fr-1.png



The looks of the V4 are very different from that of the V1 and V2 (also around $ 900)

he560.jpg
Ahhhh, the horrid connector used by the v1 is an absolute horror. Nice headphones though. Ridiculous headband.
 

edahl

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2021
Messages
393
Likes
322
index.php


Below the HE560 V1

he560-fr.png



and below the HE560 V2

fr-he560.png


For comparative reasons the HE400SE v2 ,which has a small treble peak the HE560 don't have but 4kHz is at a better level (hardness of the sound area)
fr-1.png



The looks of the V4 are very different from that of the V1 and V2 (also around $ 900)

he560.jpg
Tha wooden cup look is just so badass in comparison
 

PeteL

Major Contributor
Joined
Jun 1, 2020
Messages
2,626
Likes
2,699
I hate that Adomara does this....:mad:

Here's the regular advertised price:
View attachment 171977

Here's the actual price (just add ?emailprice=t to the end of the normal URL):
View attachment 171976

Oh look at that, savings of 75%...magic!
Most of you should know this by now, but for a few that don't...;)
So we know the "actual" price, what's the regular price?
 

Aperiodic

Active Member
Joined
May 2, 2019
Messages
240
Likes
364
I hate that Adomara does this....:mad:

Here's the regular advertised price:
View attachment 171977

Here's the actual price (just add ?emailprice=t to the end of the normal URL):
View attachment 171976

Oh look at that, savings of 75%...magic!
Most of you should know this by now, but for a few that don't...;)
I feel sorry for anybody that gets ripped off like that. People are going to get pissed off and rightly so. Makes me want to avoid Adorama.
 

tomtrp

Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2021
Messages
72
Likes
49
Really want to see Amir's measurement for the HE6SE V2 (he6se adorama) to help develop better PEQ. Hope some dear ASR friends in US can send theirs to Amir for measurement.
 

solderdude

Grand Contributor
Joined
Jul 21, 2018
Messages
12,606
Likes
28,274
Location
The Neitherlands
These similar looking hifiman model headphones is probably what Amir meant.
 
Top Bottom