HD800 Journal: Part 1

What a long wait, but finally the HD800 is here. I’ve heard the HD800 at two other occassions, but nothing beats listening at home with your own personal set up.

This past week I’ve been contemplating an upgrade to my CEC CD5300 CD Player. The CD5300 is a great CD Player, and I really have nothing to complain about it, until I heard the higher end, top loading model TL51XZ. Even from the HD650, the improvement to the TL51XZ wasn’t modest. The top loader really have a massive depth in the soundstage, making the CD5300 sounds flat and two dimensional. The upgrade proved to be just in time for the arrival of the HD800.

As much as I love the balanced HD650 amped with the Beta22, I’ve always felt that there is something missing, and I felt that the balanced Beta22 still have a lot more to offer, and the HD650 being a big bottleneck to the music chain. I’ve been constantly bugging the local Sennheiser product manager, pushing him to speed up the delivery. I’m pretty sure he was going to start rejecting my calls, but good thing the HD800 arrived in time. After all, I already have a great source, a great amp, an even a balanced cable, all waiting for some ring-radiator driver love.

It would be proper to start the HD800 experience on a single ended amplifier, and so I resisted from unplugging the standard single ended cable and replacing it with the balanced APureSound cable. The set up was as follow: CEC TL51 XZ > Grace M902 > Sennheiser HD800. I tried to listen hard, cause at the same time my daughter is watching TV at the same room. Great, all this waiting, and when it finally arrived, you can’t listen to it properly!

Out of boredom from trying to listen to an open back phone with the TV playing fairly loud, I finally unplugged the Sennheiser HD800 from the Grace, went to my storeroom, picked up the balanced APureSound cable, and plugged it in to the Beta22. The TV’s still playing, but I can hear faintly that imaging has been greatly improved. Awesome.

It’s a nice saturday afternoon, and my daughter finally decided to take a nap. She’s still 9 months old after all. I think deep down she knows that her dad has been looking forward to receiving this headphone.

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1 Comment

  • November 14, 2009


    At last… 😀