Excerpt: So far, all the headphones I have reviewed have been based on a single speaker technology. While the sound signature from all of them has ranged from bass heavy to bright sounding, the tech is basically similar. It’s tweaking and build quality that determines how cheap – or expensive – they are. That’s not the case with the . These headphones are in a whole ‘nother league. Headphones generally fall into two categories: Dynamic and Electrostatic.
Pros: Affordable (for this technology), Open, spacious sounding, Excellent sound quality for the price
Cons: Large, Not for commuting, Still not cheap, Blue is the only color choice
Follow-Up: HiFiMAN HE-400 Headphone with Revision 2 Drivers (Playback 57)
4 June 2012
Excerpt: ), HiFiMAN’s groundbreaking low-cost planar magnetic headphone that debuted this year at CES. I remember the first time I sat down and listened to the original version of the HE-400 and how shocked I was at the dark, moody tone it produced, especially in relation to the top tier planar magnetic headphones that HiFiMAN manufactures.
Summary: The HiFiMAN HE-400 is definitely one of the best sub $400 headphones around for at home listening. It has the distinct orthodynamic sound and is tweaked to resemble the HiFiMAN house sound which is smooth with an emphasis on the bass and midrange. The HE-400s are by far the most musical and interesting headphones in its price class that I have heard for a long time.
Pros: Good Price / Performance ratio, Can be driven well by a modest headphone amplifier, Very pleasant sound signature, Can be driven out of powerful portable sources, Comfortable, Quality cable, Durable construction
Cons: Blue color might not appeal to all, Needs a decent amplifier to sound their best, Treble performance not impressive
Excerpt: True confession: I’m a great admirer of the most recent crop of planar magnetic headphone designs from firms such as Audeze and HiFiMAN. What attracts me to planar magnetic designs is the fact that they offer many of the benefits of electrostatic ‘phones (sonic transparency, openness, excellent transient speed and definition, etc.), while also providing some of the key strengths of traditional dynamic-driver headphones (e.g.