About gichow

Founder of http://www.gichow.com - a website providing free information about everyday foods that burn fat fast

Shure SRH840 v Shure SRH440 headphones

Shure SRH840 (left) and Shure SRH440

If you’re wondering how these compare read on. Right now the 840 is available for £110 and the 440 for £60 in the UK. Is the former worth almost twice the price of the latter?

The 440 is brighter sounding than the 840 so picks out and abnormally highlights guitar strings and cymbals. As a consequence of this vocals can sound slightly less present and realistic/natural than they should. The 440 also has less extended bass so bass drum and double bass sound less natural however what bass it does have is more punchy i.e. has a faster attack and decay making it toe-tapping. It has a creaky plastic physical design against the 840’s more solid but also heavier (372g v 311g) design.

The difference in sound is not night and day and on first comparing them the 440 comes across as more lively and appealing because of its brighter frequency response. Overall however, over more extended listening, the 840 is the more emotionally involving and better headphone with more natural vocals (almost Sennheiser HD600 quality) and a more even frequency response. That said, the 840 is noticeably heavier and more uncomfortable on the top of one’s head. The 840 is like a more sensitive (requires a lower volume level setting to achieve the same loudness) but less comfortable HD600 with punchier and deeper bass but slightly less realistic vocals. Overall across genres the 840 sounds better than the HD600 but is much less comfortable (in fact it’s painful). These observations were made with the headphones ‘burnt in’ having had over 50 hours playing time.

I listen to music across a range of genres and my preference is for 

  • a deep and punchy (a HD600 and HiFiMAN RE0 problem) but not boomy/flabby/loose/resonant (Creative Aurvana Live CAL problem) or exaggerated (Sony MH1C problem) or bleeding-into-mids (Koss Porta Pro problem) bass
  • energetic detailed not rolled-off (Porta Pro, MH1C and CAL problem) and not too bright (Superlux 668b problem) or sibilant treble
  • clear transparent natural sounding midrange vocals that are not recessed  (Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro problem) or abnormally coloured in timbre (a problem with the metallic-sounding Fiio EX1 / Dunu Titan 1 when fitted with incorrect tips). 

All this in a comfortable design (Shure SRH840 and Jays v-JAYS problem) that is loud enough straight out of a phone (HD600 problem) and one can go to sleep wearing (SRH840 and HD600 problem).

Left-to-right my headphones in audio quality order from Sony MDR V150 to Sennheiser HD600

In a nutshell I look for sufficient tight punchy bass, uncoloured natural-sounding vocals, and sufficient unsibilant highs i.e. an extended flat frequency response with impact and low level detail without colouration or resonance.

In summary, I find both to be some of the most accurate and enjoyable headphones I’ve listened to. Ignoring the comfort issue the SRH840 is overall better sounding than the 440 across musical genres (especially for genres with deep bass such as electronic) however the 440 is say 90% there for almost half the price. Indeed for some tracks where the strings are subdued in the mix (perhaps the mixing itself was done on upper mid-forward monitors / headphones like the 440 itself) or where you simply prefer to hear more of those string sounds the 440 sounds better. Also at a very low listening volume vocals on the 440 can sound clearer since there is less bass. The 840 is highly rated by Z Reviews and Head-Fi also has mainly very favourable reviews.

Taking comfort into the equation if I had to choose between these two headphones the 440 wins because I couldn’t wear the 840 for more than half an hour. Additionally, since the cups on the 440 are a little slimmer it’s possible to wear them while going to sleep.

Though very good headphones I continue to listen mainly to my

  • £8 KZ ATE Sport earphones when going to sleep, whose plastic body makes them more comfortable to sleep in than my more accurate but tip-sensitive and sometimes ear-canal irritating Fiio EX1
  • £4 Samsung EHS64 earphones with inline microphone and volume control out and about
  • £30 Superlux HD562 (Sennheiser HD25 clones) with velour pads when I want to rock out with deep punchy bass without losing too much detail from the rest of the spectrum
  • £120 (used) Sennheiser HD600 headphones or £50 Fiio EX1 earphones when I’m after a very revealing ‘audiophile’ experience.

Hope this helps! and if you want some free advice on how to lose weight healthily check out gichow.com

What are the best cheap earphones? Samsung EHS64 – an audiophile’s bargain

image

Samsung EHS64 earphones

Samsung’s EHS64 earphones are amazing value at well under £4 on Amazon. Though their clarity is not at Sony MH1C let alone Dunu Titan 1 (FiiO EX1) levels (other well recognised sonic bargains I regularly listen to at home that also punch well above their weight) they’re a very enjoyable mildly U-shaped listen and have sufficient detail, frequency balance, transient response and open airy sound to not feel like one is missing out on too much regardless of music genre (not something that can be said of even the once much lauded HiFiMan RE-0 whose limited bass extension means one can completely miss out on bass rhythms). Sound-wise they’re not dissimilar to the venerable Koss Porta Pro (modified with the ‘quarter mod’ that helps lift that headphone’s treble veil) with an energetic but never distracting or aggressively sibilant treble (something the Titan 1 can fall foul of with certain tracks), clear articulate vocals and a tight extended open sounding bass that’s not boomy or resonant – there’s a tiny hole near the driver that probably contributes to the open sound (more natural than the PortaPro’s which exhibits some mid bass ‘bloom’). I often find myself listening to them in preference to my Sennheiser HD600 full size headphones since much less of a faff to use (straight out of my phone, no amplifier needed, can lie down/sleep with them) and keep with you (they’re always in my jacket pocket). I use them with homemade Comply style tips that are just a single 3M yellow foam earplug (about 10p a pair on Amazon in bulk) cut in half lengthways with a small hole drilled through them for the best and most comfortable ear canal seal. Tips can make a big difference to how a particular earphone sounds (seal, ear insertion depth and bore diameter affect frequency response) though the standard silicon tips the earphones come with are pretty compliant and comfortable to begin with and you may be happy sticking with them if they happen to fit your ears well. They even happen to have a phone microphone and volume control! I also use Genelec near field active monitors and their dedicated subwoofer and know how close to natural lifelike sound hifi can get but really think nowadays with careful choice one doesn’t have to spend anything like the fortune one once did to get very close to top class faithful sound and music reproduction – once at a certain minimum level of fidelity (like the Samsung’s) there’s really not that much difference in the emotional experience from the music that more exotic and expensive equipment brings. You can find a fuller review of them against other standard earphones supplied with mobile phones here. They sound good straight out of the packet but like many ear and headphones improve with some ‘burn in’ – just leave them playing music at moderate volume from say a home radio for a day or two.

Hope this helps! and if you want some free advice on how to lose weight healthily check out gichow.com

How do you save documents in Word Online?

If you’re using the completely browser-based version of Microsoft Word and are used to pressing Ctrl-S frequently in the Desktop version to save your work as you go you may be wondering how to achieve the same.

Well, the online help says “There’s no Save button because we’re automatically saving your document”

Try the following experiment
1) Type anything in your document and then immediately afterwards quit your browser
2) Go back to your document

My experience has been that nearly all of the newly typed content from (1) is showing up in (2) so I guess saving is happening almost immediately anything is typed however it’s not easy to find any guarantee of this and even Microsoft’s own documentation gives you contradictory information:

Differences between using a document in the browser and in Word says: “You save a document manually in Word Online; there is no auto-save feature.” so I guess the answer is you don’t save documents and just hope that they are automatically being saved!

Hope this helps! and if you want some free advice on how to lose weight healthily check out gichow.com

How to collaborate on documents for free without your collaborators needing anything other than internet access?

Here are a couple of ways of collaborating on documents that don’t require that the people you’re collaborating with have or register any accounts or install any software – they just need internet access and a web browser:

  1. Google documents – create yourself a free Google account (if you don’t already have one) and use Google Drive to create a document (such as a spreadsheet). From the file’s share settings click ‘Get shareable link’ and then select ‘Anyone with the link can edit’. Email the link address of your document to just those people you want to collaborate with and ask them not to forward the link to anybody else. Here’s an example.
  2. Microsoft OneDrive documents – create yourself a free Microsoft account (if you don’t already have one) and use OneDrive to create a document (such as a spreadsheet). From the file’s share settings click ‘Get a link’ and then select ‘Edit’. Email the link address of your document to just those people you want to collaborate with and ask them not to forward the link to anybody else. Here’s an example.

Curiously the Microsoft way seems a bit more tolerant of collaborators using old browser versions however when they click on the link to open your document it’s not obvious that they can edit it as well as view it (they need to click the green ‘Edit in Browser’ button near the top right). With the Google way only relatively recent browser versions are supported however when they click on the link to open your document they can start editing it straight away.

Google browser compatibility “Google Drive won’t work with Chrome 23, Firefox 23, IE9, Safari 6, or older versions. You’ll need to update your browser to use Drive.”

Microsoft browser compatibility “For the best experience on the OneDrive website, we recommend using the latest version of Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, or Safari.”

Hope this helps! and if you want some free advice on how to lose weight healthily check out gichow.com