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Hifiman HE400i Review (planar headphone)

ehabheikal

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Can you play streaming services through it? I didnt think so but not got the app? Poster wants to play Qobuz

I found out bubbleupnp app not the server plays all file types and qobuz and tidal and allows common equalizer apps to work with it. I use wavelet since it has database of headphones for correction if you have the bubbleupnp server installed locally it also streams like roon
 

ehabheikal

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Unless you've rooted your phone, system-wide parametric equalizer software for Android isn't possible, in which case I'd recommend the excellent Qudelix 5K USB DAC/amp with its built-in 10-band parametric equalizer (and optional Bluetooth connectivity as a bonus).

actually buying a used lg phone and rooting it would be a very good alternative
 

Jimbob54

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I found out bubbleupnp app not the server plays all file types and qobuz and tidal and allows common equalizer apps to work with it. I use wavelet since it has database of headphones for correction if you have the bubbleupnp server installed locally it also streams like roon
UAPP would be a good all in one alternative if you haven't already bought neutron /bubble.
 

pwjazz

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actually buying a used lg phone and rooting it would be a very good alternative
I've done this and did system wide EQ with Viper4Android. I also own a Qudelix. I can definitively say the user experience with the Qudelix is orders of magnitude better than rooting and then trying to get Viper4Android to work right. Also the Qudelix has two of the ICs from the LG phones for more power in balanced mode. I find that with my EQ and replay gain settings, the HE4XX needs the extra power.

Since getting the Qudelix, I haven't used my rooted V20 at all.
 

Robbo99999

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Anyone else notice that their HE4XX (or HE400i) sounds better after a warmup? What I mean is I'll put the headphone on and listen to a couple of parts of a couple of tracks I know very well as soon as I put the headphone on....just to kind of quickly acclimate to the headphone, and it'll sound good/ok, but then I'll play an fps gaming session using the headphones for an hour or so, and then I'll listen to some music afterwards, and it's this music listening session after the gaming where it sounds fantastic.....like the headphone has loosened up and sounds smoother (whilst retaining detail) as well as having deeper rounder more pronounced bass.....my theory is that wearing the headphone warms up the drivers and changes their properties.....I also have made a loose connection that they may sound better since my room has warmed up over the last week or so (talking a change from say 17 degC to 21 degC).....but they always seem to sound better after I've been wearing them for an hour or so (independant of room temperature). What you think, you noticed this phenomenon with your planar driver headphones?

I know that with some KEF speakers there was a debacle over low room temperature affecting the bass response in the drivers, so perhaps this carries over to headphones to some degree, and perhaps more so to planar driver headphones, as it's not a phenomenon I've noticed as pronounced with my other headphones which are all dynamic drivers.
 
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Maybe the pads have warmed up? I haven't noticed a big difference, but I'm not sure I have that critical of an ear. If I were you I would take notes on the initial tracks you find lacking and the subsequent tracks you find sounding better and see if it's more a track difference.
 

Robbo99999

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Maybe the pads have warmed up? I haven't noticed a big difference, but I'm not sure I have that critical of an ear. If I were you I would take notes on the initial tracks you find lacking and the subsequent tracks you find sounding better and see if it's more a track difference.
It's a general improvement on the tracks I use to benchmark different EQ's (so I know them well). I don't think it's pad related as the pads on the HE4XX are very soft, so I can't really see them deforming significantly more over an hour say.....so it seems like it's driver temperature related - time for the drivers to warm up from the heat of my head and the correlation I made to room temperature sits with this too, although the latter effect seems less pronounced.
 

Robbo99999

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@amirm , might be an interesting experiment to measure some planar and dynamic driver headphones at some different temperatures.....like perhaps keep the measuring unit & headphone in the shed in the garden for a low temperature reading, and then try it again in the warmth of say a 22 degC house (once both headphone & rig have warmed up to that temperature). Then as a third option you could wear the headphone for say 1 hour to warm it up and then measure it immediately afterwards to see the effect of warming it up from body heat........see if there's any difference in frequency response or distortion. You found a temperature related effect with a KEF speaker a year ago (or months) so perhaps there's a similar behaviour in headphones......and operating temperatures of headphones could range from the coldest rooms (15 degC or less and especially if using outside) to the warmest at around 30degC+ in the summer.
 

Jimbob54

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It's a general improvement on the tracks I use to benchmark different EQ's (so I know them well). I don't think it's pad related as the pads on the HE4XX are very soft, so I can't really see them deforming significantly more over an hour say.....so it seems like it's driver temperature related - time for the drivers to warm up from the heat of my head and the correlation I made to room temperature sits with this too, although the latter effect seems less pronounced.
Nope - far , far more likely its ear/ brain related. Rule out those first then investigate physical changes.
 

Robbo99999

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Nope - far , far more likely its ear/ brain related. Rule out those first then investigate physical changes.
I can't rule those out though, which is why I came up with the idea in my previous post for Amir to measure it. It's gotta be measured to know.....I've noticed a difference, but there's no way I can rule out psychological influences otherwise.
 

keebz28

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@Robbo99999 I haven't observed the same phenomenon as you but have noticed that the HE4xx definitely take a lot more juice on my headphone amp to get audible. My 320ohm Frankenphone can be audibly loud at 9pm on the JDS Atom compared to a full 12 oclock for the HE4xx which are 32ohm. I am uneducated in the technology world so i maybe misinformed.
 

Robbo99999

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@Robbo99999 I haven't observed the same phenomenon as you but have noticed that the HE4xx definitely take a lot more juice on my headphone amp to get audible. My 320ohm Frankenphone can be audibly loud at 9pm on the JDS Atom compared to a full 12 oclock for the HE4xx which are 32ohm. I am uneducated in the technology world so i maybe misinformed.
About driving the HE4XX, it's pretty much as easy/difficult to drive as my K702, I use them both around about the same volume dial position on my JDS Labs Atom amp (taking into account the slightly different negative preamps used). The same is true for my 300ohm Sennheiser HD600, all pretty much the same I've found re difficulty of driving them. So the HE4XX is not that easy to drive, but not overly difficult.
 

Jimbob54

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I'm glad you like it, we can thank Oratory! I know, I was quite surprised by how it transformed these headphones, to be fair I haven't flipped between my different EQ's to compare in a back to back manner, but I'm quite sure they never had the overall clarity & smoothness that this EQ gives.
Well, I have set up the "new" EQ . Im not sure how he squares the 2 EQs. Latest is a couple of db more bass in the very bottom end and taking out the 6db high shelf has the overall effect of knocking all the 8k plus down by 6db or more - so very different presentations . The fact the pre amp reduction has increased a couple of dB makes a quick A/B switch pretty impossible. Im not sure how I can compare the 2. They are decent headphones with either EQ or stock but they never wow me. The new EQ has more bass than I would ideally want, as does the old and I still struggle to engage in the music with them .
 

bobbooo

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The fact the pre amp reduction has increased a couple of dB makes a quick A/B switch pretty impossible. Im not sure how I can compare the 2.
Then set the preamp of his original EQ profile to the same as his new one (-9 dB).

The new EQ has more bass than I would ideally want
Oratory's new EQ format includes broad shelf/peak filters covering different frequency ranges to adjust to preference, as is clearly displayed on his new HE4XX pdf:

Screenshot_20210305-180416_Acrobat for Samsung.png
 

Jimbob54

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Then set the preamp of his original EQ profile to the same as his new one (-9 dB).



Oratory's new EQ format includes broad shelf/peak filters covering different frequency ranges to adjust to preference, as is clearly displayed on his new HE4XX pdf:

View attachment 116388
On the former, good idea, not sure why I didn't think of that. On the latter, yes. I much prefer expressing there is a range one can use. Though if course that's always been the case for any EQ.

I'm fairly sure the main difference between new and old here though is the 6db extra treble from 8k onwards in the "old" due to the high shelf. As to which is "right", I know not.
 

Robbo99999

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Well, I have set up the "new" EQ . Im not sure how he squares the 2 EQs. Latest is a couple of db more bass in the very bottom end and taking out the 6db high shelf has the overall effect of knocking all the 8k plus down by 6db or more - so very different presentations . The fact the pre amp reduction has increased a couple of dB makes a quick A/B switch pretty impossible. Im not sure how I can compare the 2. They are decent headphones with either EQ or stock but they never wow me. The new EQ has more bass than I would ideally want, as does the old and I still struggle to engage in the music with them .
I didn't like his previous EQ because of that large High Shelf Boost that was left north of 10kHz, so I used to use my own EQ based on his measurement, however I like his new EQ better than my own EQ, so I'm using his latest EQ now. And as bobbooo points out his latest EQ has some broad range customisation filters that you can tweak the curve to your own enjoyment - it's quite clever how he's been able to work those customisation filters into the EQ whilst still only using 10 EQ filter bands. I've not felt the need to tweak his customisation filters yet though, I'm just using his EQ at stock so-to-speak. If I was gonna mess with one of the bands it would be Band 5 which he lists as Upper Mid Accuracy/Shoutiness....I think this is one area where the Harman Curve might differ from my own HRTF, but not significantly so I haven't played with that variable yet.
 

Jimbob54

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I didn't like his previous EQ because of that large High Shelf Boost that was left north of 10kHz, so I used to use my own EQ based on his measurement, however I like his new EQ better than my own EQ, so I'm using his latest EQ now. And as bobbooo points out his latest EQ has some broad range customisation filters that you can tweak the curve to your own enjoyment - it's quite clever how he's been able to work those customisation filters into the EQ whilst still only using 10 EQ filter bands. I've not felt the need to tweak his customisation filters yet though, I'm just using his EQ at stock so-to-speak. If I was gonna mess with one of the bands it would be Band 5 which he lists as Upper Mid Accuracy/Shoutiness....I think this is one area where the Harman Curve might differ from my own HRTF, but not significantly so I haven't played with that variable yet.
Stick a 6db , Q0.7 8khz high shelf on his new EQ, set both EQ to -9db pre amp and tell me you can hear a difference apart from maybe a touch more low end on the new one when you quick A/B.

I think he changed his mind about the high shelf and re-jigged the rest of the filters to make it essentially the same apart from that high treble boost and a bit more at the very bottom.

All EQ profiles have always had the ability to tweak for preference , he is just articulating what the impact is now , I dont believe he is designing them to be more customisable.

EDIT- oh, and stick a 2dB high shelf as above to new and I prefer new to old, but without the extra treble, new EQ sounds a bit dull.
 
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Robbo99999

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Stick a 6db , Q0.7 8khz high shelf on his new EQ, set both EQ to -9db pre amp and tell me you can hear a difference apart from maybe a touch more low end on the new one when you quick A/B.

I think he changed his mind about the high shelf and re-jigged the rest of the filters to make it essentially the same apart from that high treble boost and a bit more at the very bottom.

All EQ profiles have always had the ability to tweak for preference , he is just articulating what the impact is now , I dont believe he is designing them to be more customisable.

EDIT- oh, and stick a 2dB high shelf as above to new and I prefer new to old, but without the extra treble, new EQ sounds a bit dull.
His EQ wasn't customisable in the same way before, there are more specifically designed customisation filters on his new EQ (EDIT: having looked at his old EQ just now he does have some very similar filters that are close to the same as the customisation filters he uses in his new EQ, but the High Shelf filter he used on his last EQ wasn't really customisable because it kicked in way to low down in the frequency range, and I also think the Q Factors and Frequencies he's chosen for his customisation filters this time are a bit more optimal for their intended usage albeit quite similar). The measurement is also slightly different than he used before, I haven't compared as accurately as overlaying the new measurement vs old measurement, but for sure he has at least smoothed the measurement (or maybe even measured a few more headsets and averaged them). It's alright, I won't do the tests you're suggesting, I'm not that interested in it, I prefer his new EQ.
 
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