Hifiman HE400S and Hifiman HE400I are two open planar headphones that was very popular among audiophile in recent years. Both of them are very similar to each other since they have come from the same line but also have some differences that set them apart. If you are looking for a headphone that will give you the best experience with wonderful sound, go check our article below to know more about the products.
In this article, we are going to give you information about:
– What are Hifiman HE400S and Hifiman HE400I
– What Hifiman HE400S and Hifiman HE400I Look Like
– What Hifiman HE400S and Hifiman HE400I can offer to you
– Hifiman HE400S vs Hifiman HE400I
About Hifiman HE400S
Hifiman HE400S is a planar magnetic headphone from the same name company. Planar headphone is indeed not that common, but there are companies come up with these kind of headphone every now and then and this one is currently one of the most popular unit in the market. When you look at the price, you may think that it is quite pricey but when you know how this headphone performs, you will realize that it is actually competitively priced.
Hifiman HE400S Design
From the outside, Hifiman HE400S looks pretty bulky but the ear cups are somehow managed to be thin enough, which is all thanks to the planar magnetic drivers and what makes it look bulky is probably the frame of the headphone itself. Since this is an over ear headphone, the ear cups are also wide enough to cover your ears and the design also looks pretty stylish with silver and black combination as well as black frame. The build quality is also good and tough enough.
Hifiman HE400S Abilities
For a headphone, sound quality is probably the most important for most people. Hifiman HE400S loves by many people especially audiophile for what they described as having an engaging sound that draws you in. If you try to compare the headphone with another popular rival like Sennheiser HD1 or Sennheiser Momentum 2, the headphone sounds more open and spacious but is lacking in the noise cancelling for it is not an ANC like those two.
Hifiman HE400S able to deliver a wide and precise soundstage with each vocals and instrument placed in their specific points without any sense of crowding for there are enough space for all of them. The treble and mids are very good with mid being the best in this headphone. However, the bass is somehow being the downside of the headphone for it is described as too light but some people said it can be ameliorated by using the Focus pads.
As for the comfort, Hifiman HE400S comes with enough padding that feels comfortable enough when used. The plenty padding will give your ear extra comfort and will sit around your ear just how an over ear headphone should be. Besides the padding, the headband is also covered with a soft vinyl-like material to enhance the comfort on top of your head too. Overall, the comfortability is great and you will most likely to be able to use them for a few hours without the feeling of want to take them off.
Coming with the unit, you will get a 5 foot cable terminated in 90 degree angle mini-plug and the 3.5mm ¼ inch adapter. Unlike many headphones out there that come with their own carrying pouch, you won’t get any in Hifiman HE400S, so if you plan on taking them, you may want to consider purchasing additional case.
About Hifiman HE400I
Hifiman HE400I the other version of HE400 series besides the original and the HE400S that we have talked earlier. This one also still the same open planar headphone with a great quality and loved by many audiophiles out there. Even though it is a planar headphone, it is sensitive enough to be driven with your smartphone or MP3 player that making the unit even more popular than it already is. The unit is definitely not affordable but you may change your mind when you know how good it is.
Hifiman HE400I Design
From the outside, Hifiman HE400I looks just like its brother with no distinct difference. However, when you handle this one with the original HE400 you will notice that it is lighter than its older brother. The padding is also different from HE400S for it is better and the ear cups are no longer made with silver color. Instead they are now look more simple and elegant with glossy black color.
Hifiman HE400I Abilities
As you can expect from an audiophile headphone, Hifiman HE400I is proven to be able to deliver wonderful sound. It able to produce great clarity from the planar magnetic drivers with nice black background and good speed. When you try listening to the unit, you will immediately notice the great level of detail. The bass in this one is better if you want to compare it to the HE400S and will let you go in deeper into your music.
Even though it can be driven by your usual smartphone or MP3 player, the result may depend on your devices. Taken from CNET, when tested on different phones, the headphone also produce different level of volume. For example when tested on iPod classic the headphone is not loud enough even with volume maxed out but when tried with Samsung Galaxy S4, it works without any complain.
As for the comfort, Hifiman HE400I is still as comfortable as HE400S and since the padding is also changed, the comfort also feels a little bit improved. The headphone should be comfortable enough for a few hours of use before you want to take it off. Coming with unit, you will get 1.5 m cable, which is different from its other brother for it is shorter and connected via gold-plated connectors that is better for it never corrode as well as add some elegance into the design.
Now, let’s compare Hifiman HE400S with Hifiman HE400I. The most prominence difference between both of them is probably how quiet Hifiman HE400I compared to Hifiman HE400S and many people said that you will need an amp to enjoy the headphone to its fullest. From the sound Hifiman HE400S is warmer while Hifiman HE400I is cooler but also cleaner overall. The mids, treble, and bass also better in Hifiman HE400I as well as the soundstage.
Hifiman HE400S vs HE400I
- Sounds terrific on your smartphone or most any portable audio device
- Superb Hi-Fi Quality with lifelike clarity, detail, extended bass and wide sound stage
- Only 350g-Long Hours of Comfortable Listening
- Innovative headband and specially designed ear pads for remarkable comfort
- Intended for high performance listening in the home or studio
- 30 percent lighter than comparable headphones
- The FocusPad, new beveled hybrid ear pads made of pleather and velour
- Newly-designed headband with an improved pressure pattern
All in all, the decision is all yours to make. In our opinion, Hifiman HE400I is the better option if we talk about how good they sound and it is probably why the unit is pricier than Hifiman HE400S. If you want to get the best one between them or have the budget to spend, we will highly recommend you the Hifiman HE400I over Hifiman HE400S.