HiFiMan HE-500 Vs Audeze LCD-2 Rev 2 [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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08-12-2011, 04:03 PM
Just curious if any of our members (Happy Camper perhaps?) have experience with the HiFiMan HE-500 & Audeze LCD-2 Rev 2 headphones.

I'm really interested in how they compare to each other and also how they compare to the AKG K701.

Happy Camper
08-18-2011, 05:58 PM
Both are in another league compared to the 701s. I've not yet heard the Rev. 2. Both will need better amping than a typical dynamic but will sound good on your dac. I know the 500s are advertized as more efficient than their big brothers. They are but still benefit with more power. The LCD-2 doesn't scale with more power in the same way.

The Lyr has been receiving good reviews for both but putting the 500s on a quality speaker amp takes it close to the HE-6. I'm trying to put a meet together in our area that will bring the rev. 2s in for a comparison. From those having both 1 & 2, the 2 has more openness and the highs are more pronounced at the cost of little less bass impact. Bassheads still prefer the 1 while the 2 gets closer to the HE. The HE doesn't have the bass dynamics of the LCDs but (IMO) are more articulate and still has better bass than anything I've heard in a dynamic (D7000 excl.).

If your preference is dominating bass in the overall sound, go with the LCD. If your preference is clarity, detail retrieval then the HE will be it. Both have mids in league with stats with better visceral impact. Not quite the speed of stats but faster than most dynamics.

08-19-2011, 06:01 AM
Thanks for the thoughts HC!

I've been interested in the HE500 because of the superior efficiency to the HE6 as I'd hate to have to dedicate a speaker amp to headphones. I ruled out the LCD2 rev 1 because all reviews indicate that they'd be too dark for my tastes. However, the rev2 are supposed to have better treble so perhaps they'd be more to my liking.

09-21-2011, 09:44 AM
good information...

Happy Camper
07-28-2012, 03:53 PM
I got to hear the rev. 2s last weekend. They are still an LCD. Bass prominent presentation but on a bright amp, they do balance out nicely. I still take the HE but I'm a confirmed HE fan.

07-30-2012, 05:46 AM
I prefer the LCD-2 but the HE500 are a better value. I own both of them. I don't really like the look and feel of either headphone. You can tell they're made by a smaller company than sennheiser and sony. I like the look of the older LCD-2 Rev 2 more than the Bamboo version:

Happy Camper
09-26-2012, 09:14 PM
Gang, I know I'm bumping an old thread but the HE-6 on a quality speaker amp with some power is just amazing. The HE planar gang has reluctantly followed and found what I have. The 6s are amp eaters and theory be damned. I've heard it said they don't need speaker amp power but once heard, they enjoy the discovery and quiet down. A local head fier was skeptical and had some very good headphone amps in the Beta 22, Burson, Bryston. All balanced. When we hooked up the speaker adapter, he hung his head in amazement. Feeling curious with this new found sound, he then pulled his 300 w monoblocks out of his HT mains and we both were grinning.

Now excited to this new discovery, we were given reign to check out some better amps at our leisure at my A/V dealer's shop. They though we were nuts running headphones directly off speaker taps. We first started with a Marantz receiver with 55wpc. They were full and provided a very good sound but got kind of boomy with a lessor defined soundstage. Next was a Sim Moon Integrated 50 w. Oh baby. The quality difference was immediately noticeable. The soundstage opened up with pinpoint placement. The bass firmed up and was amazingly refined for a headphone. All this with an absolute black background. From there we went to a Prima Luna 35w tube amp. Tubes brought it's organic, 3'd presentation but it was just polite. Not really a rocking level the Sim had provided. Since we liked the Sim so much we went to the 125w Integrated. The same openness but with more presence. The amount of detail increased and the ease of dynamics improved. The last visit was with the 175w Integrated. Close the lid and turn out the light. Man. The 3d of the Luna was evident. The level of performance impressed. Even the store manager was floored by what these things sounded like. They sell Maggies, Martin Logan, Wilson, Thiel, etc. and aren't easily impressed.

We have another visit planned to try some MacIntosh, Naim and the new Cambridge amps. I've not heard this kind of sound from any dynamic headphone and stats may have some advantage in retrieval but the orthos beat them in impact and fullness. I have ended my look for a headphone to compliment the stats speaker rig. Hearing the better amps have me scared of true high fidelity. If I could strap these to an all MBL or BAT rig, I think I would be ready to meet the big guy.

Knowing the LCDs are well respected, we again worked the headphone amps. They indeed sound good on the Bryston. I felt it brought the LCDs out of their bass dominant balance and became very smooth across the spectrum, similar to the HEs. The B22 again sounded good with a warmer sound with great detail. Then we hooked them up to the speaker amps, dropped the volume and woah. Better immediately. Same improvements we experienced with the 6s. These things actually had a soundstage outside the head.

I am only a hobbyist and don't understand it but even a $250 speaker amp sounded better than $2000 headphone amps. If you are looking for high end performance in a headphone, you owe it to yourself to give these a run on your main speaker rig. The scale of improvement with better gear has yet to be reached as we continue our journey.

11-04-2012, 08:40 PM
I am intrigued by this headphone and Audio Note has finally come out with a headphone amp - but it is entirely dedicated to this headphone!

Audio Note Kits -HE-6 Headphone Amplifier (http://www.audionotekits.com/he6headamp.html)


Happy Camper
11-10-2012, 05:07 PM

And I'm already sniffing at a 3.1 sig DAC.

Happy Camper
12-07-2012, 10:28 AM
LCD.3 incoming along with a few DACs (Anedio2 & PWD2). We had scheduled a mini meet for Sat. but with the PWD2 and the LCDs coming in, we'll move the meet back. Really looking forward to hearing how Audeze has improved. Certainly won't need the amping the HE do. I lent the HE-6 to a friend who bought a First Watt F1 to power the HE-6. Holy cow, current hungry HEs are finally sated and the bass is incredible.

Happy Camper
12-24-2012, 09:44 PM
The LCD-3s are worthy of being called an equal, if not preferable to the HE-6. After three years, Audeze has finally built a complete offering. They sound fantastic. The two properly amped are a real treat. The HE-6 on speaker amps and the LCD-3 on a Schiit Mjolnir.

As for the DACs, my old CAL has been convincingly upclassed by the three DACs present. (Buffalo III $2200, Anedio 2 $1500, PWD2 $3800). I didn't hear any difference between the three DACs available and all were detail monsters. I've not heard enough DACs to make a statement but am leaning toward the thought that $1000-1500 is a sweet spot for a computer source DAC. The Anedio 2 was a pleasure and offers a volume control. The PWD didn't show anything to make it worth almost three times the cost. The Buffalo was also a strong sounding DAC but was having a clicking sound using a stepped volume control in the balanced mode. Didn't have it in SE.

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