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Hifiman HE400i Review 2020 Revision (Headphone)

Chrisxxx26

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You don't have the right EQ that Amir provided. It should look like this:
Thank you very much. I see now my mistakes an figured out how to correct them.:facepalm: What i dont understand is how Amirs preamp of -3,4 translates to -3?
 

Chrisxxx26

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Expectation bias strikes again.
Yes. I have to admit. Have not tried the correct setting. But what I tried is the AutoEQ setting for the HD560s. And to my untrained and faulty ears it sounded worse with oratory or crinacle setting. And there was at least on my M11 a strong and easy to recognize difference.


Now I tested. And I am pretty sure I dont have to think about EQ anymore. Because audio-philistine that I am I couldn’t detect a difference between my totally wrong setting and Amirs correct setting. I could easily hear the difference between with and without EQ. But I think it is just because of the -3.4 preamp. :)
 
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Gorgonzola

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You are in the minority here. His headphone reviews are by far my favorite, and I heavily await the Arya review with baited breath (as they are my main headphones).
People are entitled to their personal priorities. Any proof that headphone lovers are a majority? You can't go be the relative number of such reviews because headphone are relatively cheap & easy to ship to Amir.

BTW, HERE is Rtings' review of the HifiMan Arya; looks pretty positive.
 

dorirod

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Yes. I have to admit. Have not tried the correct setting. But what I tried is the AutoEQ setting for the HD560s. And to my untrained and faulty ears it sounded worse with oratory or crinacle setting. And there was at least on my M11 a strong and easy to recognize difference.


Now I tested. And I am pretty sure I dont have to think about EQ anymore. Because audio-philistine that I am I couldn’t detect a difference between my totally wrong setting and Amirs correct setting. I could easily hear the difference between with and without EQ. But I think it is just because of the -3.4 preamp. :)

I don't like the AutoEq settings either, but Amir's I usually like. I think they go too much overboard with unnecessary filters.

As far as comparisons, you should set the preamp separately and then turn EQ on and off to compare more accurately. Then once you are done set the preamp back on the EQ. Also it helps to look at the spectrum analyzer and pay attention to content that hits the EQ'd area heavily.
 

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Chrisxxx26

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I don't like the AutoEq settings either, but Amir's I usually like. I think they go too much overboard with unnecessary filters.

As far as comparisons, you should set the preamp separately and then turn EQ on and off to compare more accurately. Then once you are done set the preamp back on the EQ. Also it helps to look at the spectrum analyzer and pay attention to content that hits the EQ'd area heavily.

Yep. You are right. Again. There is a difference but it is so subtle that it is of no importance to my ears. What I can say after playing with my toys: HD 560S > Bose 35 > 1000XM4. And no AutoEQ for me:)
 

Robbo99999

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Yes. I have to admit. Have not tried the correct setting. But what I tried is the AutoEQ setting for the HD560s. And to my untrained and faulty ears it sounded worse with oratory or crinacle setting. And there was at least on my M11 a strong and easy to recognize difference.


Now I tested. And I am pretty sure I dont have to think about EQ anymore. Because audio-philistine that I am I couldn’t detect a difference between my totally wrong setting and Amirs correct setting. I could easily hear the difference between with and without EQ. But I think it is just because of the -3.4 preamp. :)
If using an Oratory EQ then use his filters he lists in his pdf rather than AutoEQ filters, as @dorirod said Auto EQ goes overboard with the EQ and doesn't apply them intelligently in some circumstances. Oratory's EQ's are here:
https://www.reddit.com/r/oratory1990/wiki/index/list_of_presets

On a seperate point, you got the HD560s too........me too, nice headphone, my joint favourite headphone at the moment.
 

Lorenzo74

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Yes but it is a very cumbersome process so I rather not do it unless I have to. :)
Dear Amir, your review are of great value to ASR community and for the customer in general since manufacturers are starting to submit you their products.
I think it would be of value if one day you will re-measure back both speakers and headphones that have such behavior, not ok without EQ, recommended with EQ.
It will show beyond any opinion how EQ is impacting end results and the power of DSP in a optimal sound reproduction hifi system.
Looking forward to your future review and videos.
my Best Regards
L.
 

dorirod

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To import this PEQ profile into 'Equalizer APO', use:

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.

Thanks @amirm and @sweetchaos for making me dare go that high on the bass! Do not forget that preamp when listening to Blade Runner 2049 OST :) What a difference though, trying these settings on HE4XX which I imagine is fairly close to these. The Wallace track, it makes that chanting/growling go from sounding like an angle-grinder to something otherworldly.
 

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amirm

amirm

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I think it would be of value if one day you will re-measure back both speakers and headphones that have such behavior, not ok without EQ, recommended with EQ.
It will show beyond any opinion how EQ is impacting end results and the power of DSP in a optimal sound reproduction hifi system.
I did that early on with the original audeze LCD-X.
 

phoenixsong

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(Mass)Drop versions too- from what measurements are available it seems the 4xx should be better than the 400i series and the X4 is still relatively unknown. From measurements of the 5xx it seems to be better modded
 

peniku8

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For those who haven't noticed, oratory1990 has updated HE400i 2020 EQ, update from 19th of August 2021.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ld9y8k3r67ikujw/Hifiman HE400i (2020).pdf?dl=0

Thanks for the reminder, I have in fact not noticed yet (I got a good deal on these headphones so I pulled the trigger last week).
I A/B'd the two presets with the limited volume my iphone is able to generate into these headphones and tbh, there is almost no audible difference. The changes to the 5khz region are audible in distorted guitars, but I only hear it when I switch to the new preset, not if I switch to the old one (boost is noticable, cut isn't) and ofc I have to pay close attention to it.
I thought I had the impression that I could hear a difference from the new points around 500Hz with orchestra music, but came to the conclusion that my mind was playing tricks on me. This is with the preamp on -20db on my iphone thou, so really not loud. My Topping L30 is supposed to arrive tomorrow!

I'm pretty happy with the headphones so far. Top-end isn't quite as refined as on my speakers, but overall they sound really good. I changed Oratory's 10k high shelf from +0,5db to +2db, which got the headphones a bit closer to my speakers (flat to 30k with an AMT and full dsp with active crossovers), but the 'excitement' from the absolute clarity is still lacking. If I boost it more it just gets too bright. I considered the Sundaras for that reason, but I feel like that would be a waste for me, as I mainly still use speakers.
Comfort is good, but I wished the headband pad was a bit softer. I read it softens over time, which I'm starting to feel already (or my head is just getting used to the feeling; I haven't been a headphones guy before but my new living conditions called for a change), but I might still get some extra padding on there.
I like these more than my HD650 (which I have from the studio but never use), but have yet to do a direct comparison.
 

0RF30

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Thanks for the reminder, I have in fact not noticed yet (I got a good deal on these headphones so I pulled the trigger last week).
I A/B'd the two presets with the limited volume my iphone is able to generate into these headphones and tbh, there is almost no audible difference. The changes to the 5khz region are audible in distorted guitars, but I only hear it when I switch to the new preset, not if I switch to the old one (boost is noticable, cut isn't) and ofc I have to pay close attention to it.
I thought I had the impression that I could hear a difference from the new points around 500Hz with orchestra music, but came to the conclusion that my mind was playing tricks on me. This is with the preamp on -20db on my iphone thou, so really not loud. My Topping L30 is supposed to arrive tomorrow!

I'm pretty happy with the headphones so far. Top-end isn't quite as refined as on my speakers, but overall they sound really good. I changed Oratory's 10k high shelf from +0,5db to +2db, which got the headphones a bit closer to my speakers (flat to 30k with an AMT and full dsp with active crossovers), but the 'excitement' from the absolute clarity is still lacking. If I boost it more it just gets too bright. I considered the Sundaras for that reason, but I feel like that would be a waste for me, as I mainly still use speakers.
Comfort is good, but I wished the headband pad was a bit softer. I read it softens over time, which I'm starting to feel already (or my head is just getting used to the feeling; I haven't been a headphones guy before but my new living conditions called for a change), but I might still get some extra padding on there.
I like these more than my HD650 (which I have from the studio but never use), but have yet to do a direct comparison.

Indeed changes aren't so big, but still noticeable when you spent months with the other EQ. Have you, buy any chance, downloaded the previous version pdf ? I usually keep all versions pdf of his EQ related the HP I own, but I unfortunately forgot to download the previous HE400i version. I still have my EQs for the previous, but I'd like to compare measurements. Sometimes he updates EQ due to new measurements, sometimes he updates the EQ for better user customization.

Sundaras pads are softer, and highs resolution is next level ;)
 
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