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Sennheiser HD800+Babyface?
Old 6th February 2014
  #1
Gear Maniac
 
autobot's Avatar
 

Sennheiser HD800+Babyface?

Hello people,

I have a question to ask.

I recently went through some tests in my treated homestudio to check the acoustics of my KH120 in the room. I have terrible cancellations that I can't do much about it (assymetry,small room etc).the listening environment is impossible to improve.

I am planning to give a considerable amount of money and get the hd 800 for mixing.

My question is...can my babyface handle properly the HD 800 or I will need a phone amp, which I can't afford?

Thank you

p.s. I produce Deep House music
Old 6th February 2014
  #2
Gear Guru
 
John Willett's Avatar
 

The HD 800 are very revealing headphones and really show things up.

So, ideally, you really would benefit from a good headphone amp, (I use mine with a Grace m903).

But, having said that, if funds are tight, I would rather use the HD 800 with a Babyface while you save up for a decent amp., than get lesser headphones.

Posted from my iPhone 5s
Old 7th February 2014
  #3
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TheBrightSide's Avatar
The Babyface will drive the 800's, but they won't be performing anywhere near their full potential.
For example, my MP3 player will drive my 800's, but then when I plug them into my headphone amp, it is like listening to different headphones.
I would also suggest getting the 800's and saving up for an amp. If you do some research, you don't have to spend a fortune.
Old 7th February 2014
  #4
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Save up for an amp after you get them.
Old 7th February 2014
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by miscend View Post
Save up for an amp after you get them.
Yup - that's what I said.
Old 7th February 2014
  #6
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TheBrightSide's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
Yup - that's what I said.
Me too.
Old 7th February 2014
  #7
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got it :-) it seems that i will get them and then i will be pushed by reality to save for an amp hahaha

But, can i mix proper with them? I mean 70% headphones 30% kh120. I know its weird but my room needs some dynamite treatment.
Old 7th February 2014
  #8
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And if I got this JDS Labs - Objective2 Headphone Amplifier
which seems the cheaper/transparent solution, how do I hook it up on my pc/babyface system?
Old 8th February 2014
  #9
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I mix about 90% on the 800's and 10% on NS10's.
Partly because my room isn't great, and partly because I enjoy working with the Sennheisers.

Ideally you want a heaphone amp with pass through outs, so you can connect the outs from the Babyface to the amp, then use the outs from the amp to connect to your speakers.
Old 8th February 2014
  #10
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I haven't seen many amps with pass through outs aside from the presonus Hp4. Any others that offer that? I don't even know how I could implement most of the Hifi amps that people use.
Old 8th February 2014
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin McCabe View Post
I haven't seen many amps with pass through outs aside from the presonus Hp4. Any others that offer that? I don't even know how I could implement most of the Hifi amps that people use.
I haven't searched but I suspect there is a few that do. Most of the Musical Fidelity ones do.
Old 8th February 2014
  #12
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Thanks guys.

What about the Aphex Headpod 4.It seems like a decent amp with easy headphone connectivity.
Old 8th February 2014
  #13
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheBrightSide View Post
I mix about 90% on the 800's and 10% on NS10's.
Partly because my room isn't great, and partly because I enjoy working with the Sennheisers.

Ideally you want a heaphone amp with pass through outs, so you can connect the outs from the Babyface to the amp, then use the outs from the amp to connect to your speakers.
Wow,

and your results are translate well enough in other systems? If so, thats good news.
Old 9th February 2014
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by autobot View Post
Wow,

and your results are translate well enough in other systems? If so, thats good news.
Yes I'm quite happy with the way my mixes translate, and I check them on a variety of different sources, hifi speakers, computer speakers, car stereo and other headphones.
The main thing I use the NS10's for is checking levels, and even then it is only usually small adjustments.

I'm not sure about the Aphex amp, you are paying for 4 outputs when you only need one.
I can highly recommend the Schiit headphone amps, I use their flagship model, but they have a variety of suitable models, and I think they all have outputs too, except for their entry level amp.

Schiit Audio, Headphone amps and DACs made in USA.
Old 10th February 2014
  #15
Gear Maniac
 
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Well today I got my HD 800 :-) First impressions WOW. This is what I call stereo image.
They are burning in with a pink noise right now.....

I have a question people...

With a pink noise of 0db in cubase and -10 in totalmix, my babyface drives them louder than I can tolerate. Do I need an amp or what?

How is it possible,the babyface with its low output to drive the HDs so loud?
Old 11th February 2014
  #16
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TheBrightSide's Avatar
Hey congratulations on your purchase!
Yes you wont get a stereo image like that on any other headphones.

With white or pink noise, your ears can't tolerate a high signal. What about with music?
If you can drive them loudly without the signal distorting or breaking up at all, maybe you could do without an amp.
However I would still look into getting a quality amp eventually. The 800's will perform even better. A great amp will give you an even better stereo field, with greater separation and detail.
See how you go.
Old 11th February 2014
  #17
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There was never an issue with loudness. The Babyface headphone output is louder than most people will ever need.
Old 11th February 2014
  #18
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheBrightSide View Post
Hey congratulations on your purchase!
See how you go.
Thanks
Old 11th February 2014
  #19
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I don't get it.

First.... Rme states that babyface's head output is low for these kind of headphones.
But....I hear it louder than I can tolerate (which is loud enough believe me) ...and a head amp will give me better quality....
Why???
Loud is loud in this situation I think. Rme's head output is identical to the master output in terms of quality with a restriction in db. If I can hear loud enough why should I consider a head amp. Wouldn't it be better not to mesh another amp in the headphones output signal???

P.s. excuse my English if they are a bit meshy
Old 12th February 2014
  #20
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Having enough gain is only one issue. The main goal with an amp is that it delivers a clean, balanced, transparent signal.
Headphones are basically passive speakers. You wouldn't spend $1500 on a pair of speakers, and buy a $50 amp to drive them. It would not do the speakers justice.

No it is not essential that you spend a fortune on a headphone amp if you are happy with what you hear. But I would bet that if you did an A/B listening test with the RME and a quality dedicated headphone amp, you would certainly hear a noticable difference.
Whether that difference is worth spending a lot of money on is really up to the individual.
Old 12th February 2014
  #21
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by autobot View Post
I don't get it.

First.... Rme states that babyface's head output is low for these kind of headphones.
But....I hear it louder than I can tolerate (which is loud enough believe me) ...and a head amp will give me better quality....
Why???
Loud is loud in this situation I think. Rme's head output is identical to the master output in terms of quality with a restriction in db. If I can hear loud enough why should I consider a head amp. Wouldn't it be better not to mesh another amp in the headphones output signal???

P.s. excuse my English if they are a bit meshy
It's not about loudness. A good headphone amp will drive your headphones better even when listening at low volumes. And will distort less when you pump the volume up. It will just sound better basically. And I don't think the headphone out on the Babyface sounds nearly as good as the line out.

Anyway I don't think you should fuss about this issue too much. The headphone amp in the Babyface is fine for most purposes. It's just the weakest link in the device and not quite as high quality as the rest of the circuitry. The other issue is that the volume is very low when you connect two headphones. If you're working with vocalists you may need to connect two headphones.

If you want excellent quality get a good external headphone amp or monitor controller with headphone amp. If you're happy with decent quality then stick with the stock one. Remember this is Gearslutz!
Old 13th February 2014
  #22
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by miscend View Post
And I don't think the headphone out on the Babyface sounds nearly as good as the line out.
That's what Rme's forum admin, states.
Old 13th February 2014
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by miscend View Post
Remember this is Gearslutz!
Old 13th February 2014
  #24
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Ok, got it clearly.


Thank you
Old 18th February 2014
  #25
Gear Maniac
 
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Good morning,

after some research on cheap and clear head amps for mixing I came up with these:


Aphex Headpod 4 (spdif connectivity).
Schiit Vali (babyface headphones out> rca connectivity)
JDS labs objective 2 (babyface headphones out> mini TRS connectivity)

I am thinking that is better to go digital (headpod 4) from babyface to head amp and bypass completely babyface's head output which is said to be the weakest link in the signal chain.

Any ideas?
Old 18th February 2014
  #26
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TheBrightSide's Avatar
Yes it is best not to go from the headphone out to an amp, so the Aphex would be the recommended choice out of those.
I would research the audio quality of the Aphex though, as it would also be acting as the DAC for the Sennheisers, so you would want to know it is going to be okay.
Old 18th February 2014
  #27
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
The HD 800 are very revealing headphones and really show things up.

So, ideally, you really would benefit from a good headphone amp, (I use mine with a Grace m903).

But, having said that, if funds are tight, I would rather use the HD 800 with a Babyface while you save up for a decent amp., than get lesser headphones.

Posted from my iPhone 5s
Just setup a project studio for an artist and one of the first things specified was a Grace m903. Hard to beat with the 800s and is a great monitor center.
Old 18th February 2014
  #28
Gear Maniac
 
autobot's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RKeefe1032 View Post
Just setup a project studio for an artist and one of the first things specified was a Grace m903. Hard to beat with the 800s and is a great monitor center.
I know. Can't afford it though. My limit is 300 euro.
Old 18th February 2014
  #29
Gear Maniac
 
autobot's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheBrightSide View Post
Yes it is best not to go from the headphone out to an amp, so the Aphex would be the recommended choice out of those.
I would research the audio quality of the Aphex though, as it would also be acting as the DAC for the Sennheisers, so you would want to know it is going to be okay.
That's what I thought.

I did a research on aphex. The few things i found, was on gearslutz and they were only good worlds.

Should i start a thread "Headpod 4 opinions?" hahahaha
Old 18th February 2014
  #30
Gear Head
 
Ulric's Avatar
 

Grace m903's amp is designed for low impedance cans
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