Hifiman Arya

Anyone have any experience with these? Currently own an Edition X V2 and it’s one of my favorites!

Wondering if anyone here has some impressions or thoughts they could share.

I wrote a bit about them here: https://www.headphone.com/blogs/news/canjam-at-rmaf-2018-impressions

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Was the Arya considered the replacement to the Edition X? I get so confused looking at hifiman’s lineup these days.

I believe so, they align more with the Edition X V1 in price than anything else. The Ananda is priced a bit higher than the HE560 originally cost so if I had to guess the Arya is the true HEX replacement.

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I’m excited to receive mine! I liked the HeX V2 more so than the Ananda

I’ve had a decent amount of time with the Arya and I must say they are nothing short of amazing. If anyone has any questions I can help and answer them.

I had upgraded my HeX V2 to the Arya and had the Ananda on loaner for a few weeks. The HeX V2 was my favorite headphone for a while but it had it’s own faults as did the Ananda. The Arya however captures everything I wanted in the HeX and improves on it by a considerable margin.

While the HeX felt sometimes veiled and somewhat too laidback, the Ananda was too shouty and the treble too peaky.

The Arya is perfect. Increase the detail and resolution on the HeX and what you get is essentially the Arya.

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Have you listened to sundara or HE560? Would be interested in how they compare.

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I owned the He560 a few years back. In fact that was my first ‘high end’ headphone. Before that I had a Senn 598 and Audio Technica M50x and various other skullcandys and klipschs

I loved the He560 and at the moment it is definitely one of the best performing headphones at it’s current price. However, as I went deeper into the world of Hifi, I started noticing things I didn’t like about the 560. Now again, I haven’t heard these headphones in over 2 years, so I can’t really give an accurate comparison. From what I remember, it lacked bass impact and had a thin sound probably attributed to a peak in the high mids/treble. At times it would get sibilant on me, but I was also running that off a mani/magni 2 which I find accentuated that characteristic. I also found the mids a bit thin.

Compared to the 560, the Arya has excellent bass presence. It’s not overdone at all. The HeX sometimes made me feel that the bass was too much, but the Arya’s bass is excellent. Well detailed with good impact and rumble. The treble is energetic but never reaching the point of sibilance. Very well extended and detailed, yet smooth. As for the mids, they just sound fuller. There is no hollow effect that I can generalize the he560 as having.

There is a lot to like on this headphone. It just sounds right. A slight tilt to the warmer side of neutral which gives notes a good weight. At the same time, it’s spacious and lets vocals breath with air.

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Here’s a review that I only recently found, complete with E.A.R.S. measurements. I don’t think I’ve read any headphone review on this site before, but I thought the reviewer did a pretty decent job.

https://thenextweb.com/plugged/2019/03/12/hifiman-arya-review-these-1600-headphones-could-be-your-endgame/amp/

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Thanks to the community preview program I’m currently evaluating both the Arya and Ananda. Just thought I’d post me initial measurement + impressions on the Arya.


This is the HEQ compensated graph - I’ll likely do a HPN graph as well.

I’m immediately enjoying the Arya a LOT. Soundstage is massive. This makes me think of a planar HD800s. It also feels as if the images are… taller? Someone had said these planars sound like things are coming from above you and I’m beginning to understand why. Interestingly there’s a bit of unevenness throughout the FR, and I’m struggling to understand what that’s from - or make the connection between it and what I’m hearing. This is smoothed at 1/12th so it doesn’t look as noticeable but you can still see the midrange jaggedness. It may just be due to the sheer size of the planar driver. I know my preferences lean towards warmth and mid-forward cans, and the Arya has just a hint of that without skimping on the treble energy. So far detail is pretty close to the tier 2 Focal headphones (Clear and Elegia) - I’m not sure which I’d prefer. Anyways, at the moment this is a lot of fun.

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This mid-range jaggedness seems to be a common feature on a lot of measurements of Hifiman headphones, and I also see it on some other planar magnetics like the LCD2C. My best guess is that it’s destructive and constructive interference due to diffraction from the magnet array.

In my measurements of the HE-560, I saw a little bit of mid-range jaggedness which was visible with both the flat stock pads as well as some angled ZMF Ori pads. If the jaggedness were due to pad reflections, I would expect the features at 300 and 600 Hz to change with pad change, but instead the Ori pads just add some clarity and reduce some low treble, and the midrange kinks remain.

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Interesting. I wonder if there’s a way to correlate that to a sonic quality specifically. I’m currently struggling to definite how a “jagged” FR in the midrange sounds haha. It’s not something I’d immediately have picked up on pre-measurement.

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Arya FR looks nice for my tastes and it was one that I have been eyeing as an upgrade from HE560… hmm.

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The only potential concern for me is the slight peak between 8-9khz. The Arya passed my sibilance test, and as much as this does treble extremely well - it’s not the best I’ve ever heard to my taste. Out of all my assessments this has to be the most insignificant nitpick, because this treble really is exceptional - it’s just that when listening to music with vocals, the edges of the ‘S’ sounds jump out at me ever so slightly more than the tonal focus of the consonant. I also don’t think it’s bad because the resolution/detail is so good, but it has the potential to be distracting for certain tracks. At the same time I was recently doing some voice recording in a studio environment and realized… that’s exactly what it sounds like in real life. So it’s more of a personal sensitivity that the Arya accurately portrays. This also helps certain instrumentation and splash for cymbals, drum kits, and edge harmonics that I can totally see why it was tuned this way.

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Yeah, I can’t correlate any specific sonic quality to it either. Its entirely possible that the peaks and dips are so narrow that we perceptually smooth over them anyway.

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I have owned Arya until quite recently, and it’s really a bargain among Hifimans. I am thinking Hifiman should have named it as “HE1000 Jr”, which is exactly how I concluded in the end (after some side by side comparisons with HE1000 v1 and v2). To me Arya was closer to HE1000 v1 than Elex to Clear.

My experience largely mirrored what @Resolve put nicely – only different in that … it couldn’t pass my longer term sibilance/sparkle test in the end. :frowning_face: It’s clearly better than HE1000 v1 that regard, but does not have as pleasing treble as Edition X (both versions), although I believe Arya nuanced and articulated bass far better. Also well scales with resolving upstream, which Edition X couldn’t do well for me.

Speaking of upstream, amps and sources should be chosen carefully for Arya. Due to its forwarding treble, I don’t think bright or incisive things go well with Arya. Also I perceived that Arya was a current-hungry load – like other higher Hifimans. That raised hurdle to find an optimal amp for this headphone.

I still think Arya should be included in audition lists for anybody on the market of 1k+ headphones. Not to mention those who favor HE1000-ish tonality.

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I think its best feature is its enormous stage and separation. Not just width but depth and height as well. Yeah the treble etch is standing out a bit to me as well.

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I’ll be very curious to hear your impressions of the Ananda’s treble vs the Arya’s.

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I prefer the Ananda’s. It’s right on the money for my taste. I love the Sundara’s treble but thought it was just a hair north of where I like it, and the Ananda gets it perfect. I’m going to be doing a full comparison between the Arya and Ananda because each has strengths to highlight.

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Ah I didnt notice the 8K spike in that graph. It’s kind of all over the place so may not affect me too much.

I’ll keep tabs on this for the future. My Verite comes in tomorrow and WA7 on Monday and I need to concentrate on them. :slight_smile:

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