HiFiMan HE 400i Review
The HiFiMan HE-400i is a high-end headphone made for audiophiles at a semi-affordable price. The earphones are an upgrade from the HE-400 headphone that has now been discontinued. However, the full-size model you can find available on the market as it offers you superior sound. But is there a difference between the two? Find out here all the inside news related to the HE-400i.
HiFiMan HE-400i Design
Similar to the HE-400, the HiFiMan HE-400i uses the same planar magnetic drivers. These flat drivers produced a dynamically alive sound that audiophiles loved in the forerunner. When comparing the two models, you notice that the HE-400i is lighter in weight at 13.05 ounces instead of the hefty weight of 15.5 ounces. The headband HiFiMan redesigned with an improved pressure pattern as well. Furthermore, the earpads comprise a pleather with velour.
For that reason, you can enjoy the improved sound with comfort. You receive the headphones with a receiver or amp to use at home. While the earphones work well with sound systems, you can use them with portable devices, as well. What was a bit disappointing is the cord that measures half the size of the ten-foot one of the predecessor. Using it with your phone will work well, but connected to a home receiver, you may feel a bit constricted. With the Y-connecter, it attaches to both earcups.
Furthermore, it enhances the electrical performance with the gold connector as it does not corrode (so it is not just there for flair.) Moreover, if ever the wire breaks, you can replace it with a new one. At the end of the cable is a 3.5mm plug with an additional 6.3mm gold-plated adapter included. There are no extra accessories in the package. So if you are expecting a carry case, the only thing you have is the swanky box it arrived in. On the other hand, it has an open-back design giving you a spacious sound compared to closed-back headphones. The problem with open-back is that you will get sound leakage and not made for open-office use.
The HiFiMan HE-400i is an exceptional headphone with a high price. You get a more transparent sound that is even brighter than the P7 flagship of Bowers & Wilkins. You can hear tunes more profoundly, but the sound is open and airy. Listening to orchestral sounds you do get an expansive resonance compared to the P7. The instruments are easily distinguished while the mid-range is warm. On the other hand, the headphone excels, especially with Blues. The HiFiMan HE-400i offers you a better-defined bass compared to the P7 with more powerful bass. While listening to percussive beats, you have loads of oomph but do lose some of the attack and crispness of the B&O P7. One more notable thing is that the HE-400i is more sensitive than the HE-400 headphone. As a result, using it with your phone might not be such a good idea.
The reason is that your mobile device does not have enough juice to listen to music loud enough. On the other hand, when plugged into high-resolution audio equipment, you get more volume, and the resonance improves. Therefore, audiophiles will enjoy using the HE-400i plugged in at home to an amp or AV receiver. You get a dynamic oomph with clarity. Furthermore, attached to a smartphone, there is a slight improvement when used with a phone providing more juice. One thing is sure the HE-400i has a superior sound that is more transparent with better-defined bass than the 400i. The earphone is comfortable for long hours of listening.
- Color: Black
- Cord Type: Wired
- Extras: Planar Magnetic Drivers with Detachable Cable
- Form Factor: Full-size Open-back
- Included: 3.5mm audio cable with 6.35mm adapter
- Noise Isolation: No
- Warranty: 1-year
- Weight: 13.05 ounces
HiFiMan HE-400i Pros and Cons
What we like:
- Exceptional sound
- Well-defined bass
What we do not like:
- The cord is a bit short
- Open-back design does leak some sound
Should You Buy it?
Yes, if you have always wanted to own high-end headphones. However, the price is a bit steep, but you will be getting the best audiophile headphone. The earphones sound superb and have an excellent build with improved design compared to the older model. Furthermore, the headset is comfortable to wear for hours of listening in the comfort of your home. With the detachable cable, you can swap it out with more improved wires, as well. You can use these headphones on the go, at home, or even in a studio.
Once you have the HiFiMan HE-400i on your head, it will become your preferred headset to use at home. You get a high resolution that is fast when listening to different genres of music. You can connect it to your smartphone and control the volume directly from your phone. However, the earphones sound better coupled to a headphone amp or AV receiver. The sound is natural with most acoustic recordings, and you can listen for hours without getting tired. In honesty, it even sounds better than the B&O P7 that is a prestige audiophile headphone as well.