The box measures 225 x 265 x 140mm. For the Ananda, HiFiMAN have implemented what they call their 'supernano' diaphragm, meaning it's one of the thinnest materials being used. They are now a well-recognised brand globally – particularly in the field of portable or personal audio products. There really isn’t a lot of difference in sound quality between the Ananda and HD800S, and for bass extension the Ananda has the edge on Sennheiser’s great flagship dynamic. Again, both are great sounding headphones with similar frequency signatures (HD800S is brighter and airier, Ananda is a little warmer and richer). Fun in the Sun. I think this is attributable to the nicely neutral frequency response. This surprisingly includes my iPhone SE – which manages quite nicely at around 65% volume. At the bottom of each cup is a single 3.5mm socket for the replaceable cable. The frequency response consistency is amazing. This has had me wondering if similar changes made it to other headphones in the lineup. It's a very transparent window - not quite on the level of far more expensive flagships like the higher end Arya, or the HEDD audio HEDDphone - but still better than most if not all of the competition under $1000. Both have detachable cables, and both are comfortable. This time it is the Alara which is slightly easier to drive (needing just a little more current). And so just like my previous evaluation, it's my pleasure to thoroughly recommend the HiFiMAN Ananda. Note that there is a coupler artifact at 4.5khz that shows up on just about every headphone. There is a life-like sense of flow around me. The Ananda just has more bottom end and is a lot faster and cleaner sounding. The bigger brother, the HiFiMAN Arya, also has a similar frequency response, however I find it's not quite as smooth as the Ananda at around 6khz and 9khz. The Ananda has possibly my favorite frequency response so far, and it's also remarkably similar to that of the Sundara pictured in green. Frequency Response: 8–55 kHz. In terms of soundstage, the HD800S has a larger overall stage, and is more expansive. Both have very good padding and are both comfortable and very ergonomic. So while lateral definition is good, it's not as much of an "all around you" kind of experience like some headphones have but instead more like being at a concert with the music in front of you. Their support and feedback are invaluable. In other words, the more clear that image, the better detail retrieval the headphone has. However, I was hoping HiFiMAN had been able to update this headband design to include the small notches found on the Ananda-BT (the newer wireless version), which does allow for a small amount of swivel. The HD600 clamp is stronger (when new) but can be relaxed with gentle stretching. Thankfully the Ananda comes in just under 400g, so it's one of the lighter planar magnetic headphones out there. For the purposes of this review – I’ve used the Ananda from a variety of devices including my iFi Micro iDSD (with and without the VE Enterprise statement tube amp). There often is a typical downside – planars tend to be heavier and can sometimes suffer from perceived reduction in soundstage. So, what is different about a planar headphone (from a traditional dynamic)? Type: Open-back, circumaural, planar-magnetic headphone with very low-mass, “supernano” diaphragms Frequency response: 8Hz–55kHz Sensitivity: 103dB Impedance: 25 ohms Weight: 14.07 oz. In all cases I used the iFi Micro iDSD. I wanted both- convenience and great sound so that set the stage for my dream to build the best sounding personal audio products. Lower mid-range – essentially flat and perfectly balanced with the bass. Phenomenal audio performance with superb sense of space, accurate bass, and lovely detail throughout frequency range. My testing for this section was done with Jriver Media Center feeding lossless files to an iFi Micro iDSD (power isolated by an iUSB). Hifiman’s claim is that this is 80% reduction in thickness and weight when compared to the standard planar driver, and both the thickness and weight (or lack thereof in this case) contribute to how difficult a headphone is to drive. I often have concerns about planar magnetic headphones losing a bit of the center image where it collapses towards you, or when sounds pan from left to right, the switch over is so immediate that there almost is no center image, but with the Ananda that's thankfully not the case. Unparalleled Portable Audio Performance ANANDA is the perfect companion for the SuperMini, a sonic match made in heaven allowing you to experience sonic bliss wherever you may be. The two cables supplied with the Ananda are of an ultralight “wire inside tube”-design, very similar to that of the HE-1000 v2. That's often the trade off we have to endure in order to get the excellent performance planars often come with, but HiFiMAN seem to have solved the weight issues reasonably well. This is the official thread to discuss the Hifiman Ananda. No EQ was engaged. The Alara is a great price for a Planar – but here, the additional you pay for the Ananda is absolutely justified. They also have the headband design and metal yokes of the Sundara, so they have a lower profile, and should be a bit more durable. The Ananda is a great looking headphone (IMO). But for me I do miss a bit of that slam quality for music that doesn't token the sub-bass frequencies as much. They started initially with in-ear earphones, branched out into building hi-res portable players, and this was followed by planar magnetic headphones. In my opinion – not really. I really haven’t noticed any weight issues even after some quite long listening sessions. This measurement system is not industry standard and should not be compared with other measurements that are. I've had the opportunity to review numerous other headphones in the meantime as well, so it's important to consider where the Ananda fits now - especially at the lower price tag - for anyone looking to potentially make a purchase. I did initially think the dip on my measurement rig at 1-2kHz might be an issue with looking at. The cable is one of the strangest I’ve come across. HIFIMAN CORPORATION (201) 443-4626 The HD800S has angled drivers to enhance soundstage, where the Ananda creates angle through the earpad shape. Specs & Pricing. Like the Sony, the N700 has excellent range and superior to the Ananda BT. The Ananda doesn't have the kind of dry planar bass that I sometimes worry about showing up, and it's also not particularly artificial or metallic sounding either. My personal open headphone search has pretty much ended. but really, who would? I was able to wear it over the course of a full work day - nearly 8 hours - without any issues. The Sundara has a similarly excellent frequency response, has slightly better punch and slam, and is very competitive at half the price of the Ananda. The sub-bass rumble in Lorde’s “Royals” is audible and clearly defined, and I find it quite balanced with the rest of the signature. The Ananda has far better overall bass extension and impact, more body to the lower mid-range (male vocals sound significantly better) and is more balanced in end-to-end frequency response. Again, the Ananda has better overall bass extension and impact, and again male vocals do sound better to me (although I prefer female vocals on the HD800S). The voltage and current requirements double if you want to go beyond 115dB …. HIFIMAN ANANDA Over-Ear Planar Magnetic Headphones ANANDA is the culmination of years of development, lightweight, ultra-fine planar drivers at their heart … What I use is a head width simulator coupled with a latex soft face (for the headphones) with a hole so the veritas can sit flush. It was great at $1000 and it's just as good on sale now at $700. Sign up for our monthly newsletter plus the occasional special announcement. These low impedance headphones create a great compatibility with mobile devices and portable MP3s. For anyone wondering about how the design trajectory works for the various different headphones in HiFiMAN's lineup, this tree illustrates where some of the influences stem from: The Ananda feels fairly sturdy for most of it. Imaging is close on both headphones – they both give very consistent and clean spatial cues. As a glasses wearer there is some slight pressure from the cups (pushing the glasses to the bridge of my nose), but nowhere near as bad as the HD600/650 from Senn. Availability: In stock. The Ananda is maybe a bit more 'U-shaped', with a touch of extra bass energy, while the LCD-X ends up being a bit more neutral, just with an upper midrange dip, but better treble extension above 12khz. They sound practically the same as the Edition X but with a tad better mid-range and harmonic distortion. With the FiiO M9 digital audio player, the volume required was approx 75/120 on low gain to achieve ~70-75dB, and again the M9 had no problem driving the Ananda with good control over the drivers. When considering detail retrieval, I like to borrow the 'image clarity' analogy expressed by a friend of mine. Bass extension and impact is great on both headphones (as you’d expect from a planar), and the real difference here is in sound-stage presentation and upper-mids. Suspended under the sprung steel is a wide leather headband, and this is very comfortable with good weight distribution. More importantly, adding the A5 amplifier netted no real change in perceived dynamics. There is good impact and it is both quick and clean. With the Ananda, you could start with a FiiO K3 and work your way up from there. If you do, then I think the answer is probably not. There aren't too many wireless open-back audiophile headphones out there, especially full-blown Planar Magnetic models. Upper mid-range – slightly elevated compared to lower mid-range (mainly in the 3-5 kHz area, which helps add euphony in the presence area for female vocals. The Ananda has such good detail retrieval that it's quite smooth sounding in that range, which I think on lesser headphones could cause issues with sibilant sounds coming across a bit too aggressively. Join the discussion about the HiFiMAN Ananda at "The HEADPHONE Community". The Yokes attach to the earpieces using two serrated small bolts per side. But it's such a minor difference that this will likely end up being a matter of preference more than anything else. COMPARISON TO THE HEX V2: TL;DR. I guess the review of hi-res audio headphones HIFIMAN Ananda vs Arya will be helpful for audiophiles and professional audio recorders. Nonetheless, it's very easy to get it to fit right and be comfortable, and I think most people will find the Ananda easy to wear for long listening sessions. As mentioned, the Ananda is a planar magnetic headphone, so many of the hallmarks of planar magnetic headphones show up in its technical performance. Clarity is excellent, and there is a high level of detail in all my usual test tracks. The resultant cable looks somewhat fragile and tends to kink (which makes me fear for its longevity), but the kinks do seem to straighten over time. This is mitigated by the fact that the Ananda is generally quite comfortable in its default position. 07 oz. All rights reserved, Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window), Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window), Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window), FIIL CANVIIS BlueTooth Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones, Sennheiser HD660 S and HD650 distortion measurements. So, does the Ananda get better with amping? The Ananda by contrast doesn’t need much power from an amp, and will work better straight out of a phone. Male vocals have good presence and richness in timbre and I’m not finding male vocalists thin or lacking. Let us hope Hifiman sticks to the 3.5 mm. With full-range frequency response and a micrometer-thick diaphragm, the Ananda produces an open sound signature and quick, detailed imaging. The open back nature constitutes for a wider, expansive soundstage with great detailing. The Ananda was advertised as being easy to drive, and I guess this is why HifiMan included the shorter 3.5mm cable. Clamp is moderate – enough to stay in place, but not enough to cause undue pressure. But using my desktop set-up and JRiver Media Center’s parametric EQ, nulling this dip out did not really enhance the sound. What this means is that virtually all my higher end DAPs are easily able to drive the Ananda to very listen-able levels without distortion or clipping, and without needing extra amping. That said, their neutral sound profile is ideal for audiophiles. I’ve also used it with various portable devices (including the HifiMan R2R2000) and with portable amps including the xDuoo XP2, Q5 and XRK NHB Portable Class A amplifier. SOUND SO GOOD, ANANDA BHAI CAME BACK TO LIFE The HiFiMAN Ananda is the product of years of hard work and R&D. Unparalleled portable audio performance Ananda is the perfect companion for the supermini, a Sonic match made in heaven allowing you to experience sonic bliss wherever you may be. The Ananda clamp is stronger but not uncomfortable. This is a purely subjective review – my gear, my ears, and my experience. The diaphragm is now only 1-2 microns thick, and this should aid efficiency (ease of driveability), as well as transient response. Sensitivity: 103 dB. Frequency Response: 8-55,000 Hz Nominal Impedance: 25 ohms Sound Pressure Level: 103 dB. Description I found most of these short facts from a couple of interviews with Dr Bian posted online, and among the interviews were a couple of direct quotes which I found fascinating and illuminating: I started listening to a lot of music when I was in high school. Both have detachable cables, and both have very good padding. Sonically I’m really struggling to find anything. Weight: 399 g. Socket: TRS 3.5 mm. Lower treble – very good extension without dropping off, even after 10 kHz. Instead of using a moving voice coil (to pull the diaphragm in and out from one ring within the driver), a planar uses an ultra-thin diaphragm suspended between two plates of magnets. The Best Audiophile Headphones for 2020 If you take sound quality seriously, check out the best high-fidelity headphones and earphones we've reviewed. The graphs are provided merely as a point of discussion. The Ananda does reveal the sibilance, but it isn’t show-cased or accentuated. Again, the first noticeable point is that the HD800S needs additional volume / power. They offer Bluetooth 5.0 compatibility, a detachable but sub-par boom microphone, and on-board playback controls, but have a slightly less well-balanced sound profile than the wired Ananda. The following shows how this headphone measures relative to the HEQ compensation, which is based on the Harman target and does add a bass shelf. Specifications. Isolation with the Ananda is (as expected for an open headphone) very light – i.e. The other notable difference here is that the Ananda has more treble energy throughout the primary treble region. For this I used the Q1ii, A5, XRK-NHB, and xDuoo XP2. The Ananda's design is handsome and sleek, with massive, ear-shaped circumaural earcups with leather earpads. With quick swapping the Ananda is quite a bit more comfortable (in terms of weight distribution), although I can use both for extended periods. This of course indicates that the Ananda is (as stated by HifiMan) a relatively benign load, and most portable devices should have no real issues driving. Please take it all with a grain of salt – especially if it does not match your own experience. If you're looking through a window at a scene, how clear is the window? Buy the HiFiMAN Ananda on at the best price available. The first is that some of them have seen price drops along the way, namely the Sundara is now priced consistently at $350 and the Ananda's current sale price of $700 puts it in a much more aggressive price bracket than its previous pricing did at around $1000. The full accessory pack includes: The Ananda is a top performer in its price class and a great value. Both have detachable cables and replaceable earpads. So in my mind, if you don't want to EQ anything and you listen to a wide variety of music, the Ananda may actually be the sweet spot. During an interview with HiFiMAN CEO Dr. Fang Bian at the recent CanJam NYC 2020, he explained to me that while there are no official revisions for any of them, there may have been some efforts made to improve reliability and aesthetics - small tweaks to the dust cover look, and removal of paint on magnets and so forth. The $999 HIFIMAN Ananda-BT Bluetooth Over-Ear Planar Magnetic Headphone is something of a unicorn in the wireless headphone world. The pads are removable/replaceable. If my HD800S somehow became damaged, it would be a hard decision for a replacement and considering the price difference – just maybe I’d be going home with a HifiMan box. Depending on how much you're willing to spend, either of these options will serve you well. That's also not to say the Sundara does it poorly either, they're both close to perfect for that range. The cups are large – 130 x 100 mm – and are housed in black plastic (to keep the weight down). This was also there with the xDuoo XP2 driven from the iPhone over Bluetooth. The on-line Digizoid Headphone Power Calculator tells me that at 25 ohms and 103 dB SPL/mW sensitivity, it requires 0.63 Vrms, 25.2 mA and approx 16 mW to reach 115 dB SPL (on the verge of pain). The Ananda is a bit heavier – although I still don’t find it fatiguing over long periods. HiFiMan Ananda impresses with the crystal clear details at all ranges with a spacious soundstage. Again, both headphones share similar build materials – a mix of plastic and metal. A staple in any audiophile's collection for a reason, the Andromeda is hand's down one of our favourites. I’d thoroughly recommend these. The Ananda comes in a large retail box with printed outer sleeve. The headband is nicely designed to minimise individual pressure points and distribute the weight evenly. The HD800s has swivels for the ear-cups and feels as if it fits a little better. The Ananda has better extenders and can be used for smaller heads – the Alara lacks adjust-ability for smaller heads. Either way – I personally don’t think added EQ is necessary. According to Hifiman, theAnanda’s 3.5mm headphone connector is the company’s strongest yet, ensuring years of secure, trouble-free performance. They were designed more for convenience than great sound. Both have replaceable ear-pads, but the HD600 is more modular in design. This looks like it could be fatiguing, but really it doesn't sound like that at all. – which manages quite nicely at around 65 % volume 's done on the same volume level but... Headphone has around 65 % volume improved representation of textural nuances and image structure in the lineup without an simulator... Driver headphones comparatively the Ananda BT is pretty good value in my books )... Are circumaural and are very comfortable memory foam and angled becoming irritable iFi Micro iDSD few... 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