TYGR 300R vs He400i 2020

Hi everyone.

I want to upgrade to a newer pair of headphones, but am quite indecisive on which one to buy.

After using HyperX Clouds for a long while, a friend of mine gifted me his AD500x. Even tho they have pleased me quite well for a year now, I am itching for an upgrade/different headphone.

The headphones are bit too boring for me in terms of musicality and even while gaming it misses some punch in the lower frequencies. They are a bit too bass-light for me. Overall, they have been pretty good for FPS.

I will be using it for both gaming (shooters, mainly. But very diverse set of games) and music (Rock and heavy metal) while watching some youtube videos on the side. Basically, they will be my daily drivers. By no means do I want a headphone that is super competitive or anything. If it’s gaming performance is quite good with pinpointing footstep directionality and also have good musical performance, then “competitiveness” is something i can really leave in the ditch.

Sennheisers are not quite my cup of tea. The “Sennheiser Veil” is something I really dislike. I do not mind a bit of warmth to a headphone, but with Sennheiser I am just not a big fan of it. My main preference is V-shape, but i can stray away a little bit from that idea. A bit of treble and a bit of low-end is so far that seems to strike with me the most.

After a crap ton of searching around and asking in some discords, I have settled on 2 headphones: The TYGR 300R, which seems to get crazy praise. And the HE400i 2020 edition, which according to many is an awesome budget value too.

TYGRS seem to be quite a soundstage, V-shape king according to the limited reviews that are out there, but people also keep telling me that “Planars are so much better than dynamic drivers in terms of overall sound quality”, especially while AMPing them up and EQ’ing them a little bit. So I am really torn between the two. I will be buying the Schiit Heresy to power the 400i if I decide to buy that one.

Unfortunately there are not many people who seem to have both to compare it for me. Did anyone hear both and could possibly tell me which one you prefer or which one is better ?

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Anyone that can help?

If you haven’t already pick up a pair of brainwaves lx ear pads for your AD500x. I swapped mine and I think they brought bass up to an acceptable level for me. 26 bucks on Amazon so it’s worth a shot right.

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Ah okay, I saw your post in the tygr thread, didn’t realize you had a full on post for this.

First off, welcome to hifiguides,

To explain on this, the AD series is quite popular and known for being very good in FPS as the AD700x is a budget staple for just really good soundplacement. However, you are completely accurate in saying they are bass lite as the bass is recessed much like you would get if you used a K702 from AKG. The mids and highs of this headphone are pushed forward and the bass is pushed back. Sounds like this style of headphone isn’t for you.

This right here completely gets rid of the HE400i in my opinion, it’s another bass lite headphone however in this case the 400i is a brighter tuned headphone. You would want the tygr for that music genre between the two as it’s a warm headphone and in terms of shooters it has the better soundstage and imaging while being perfectly comfortable enough to become a regular use daily driver and low ohm enough to run ampless.

the 400i is indeed a good headphone, it’s maintained a very good reputation. The only issue with hifiman is the companies quality control issues but they make fantastic bright sounding planars. Granted you sound like you appreciate low end more, so I would advise to steer clear of this particular brand considering a lot of their headphones in particular are bass lite or more around neutral. Planars are nice they offer slam and speed but in this companies case they just aren’t all too bassy which is unfortunate in my opinion.

The tygrs may appear ever so slightly veiled due to the slight dip in the mids and lower treble. However, at the same time it has a slight peak of brightness making it sound to some as though it’s ever so slightly V shaped. It is, after all, a DT 990 just revamped.

Not even close to being accurate, like at all

That ^ is not a V that is a warm headphone.

it does indeed have a very large soundstage to it one that rivals the k7 series from akg to my ear.

extremely subjective load of crap in my opinion. Don’t listen to people who claim “absolutes” when it comes to this hobby, as they are 9 times out of ten either blowing smoke out their ass, don’t know what they are talking about, or just speaking completely based on their opinion. Planar just like everything in this hobby is completely preference based, you can get great quality out of either driver. Planars do however, have more slam and speed than dynamics but good planars are definitely up their in price. Looking at the fact you appreciate a V signature, you’d probably be looking at Dan Clark’s Aeon over there which is a V shaped Planar Magnetic headphone however, it’s $500.

I wouldn’t say that’s accurate no… especially considering how well a 600 ohm beyerdynamic headphone responds to a massive variety of amps and eq. To each their own preference in this case, it really does depend on what the person is looking for.

If you plan to buy an amp, this is a good one imo. Just do yourself a favor and shop around try to find one in the used(mint condition) category as you will save around $50 including shipping and fees. Others that are strong in that pricepoint are the regular Schiit Magni 3+, Monoprice Liquid Spark, and JDS Atom. Just don’t forget you do also need a Dac to go along with that

In your use case? Tygr 300R would be better for you, however I worry that since you have a preference towards V shaped signatures whether this will work for you or not. There are the options of just getting something such as a AKG K712 and bass modding it(different pads and another modification), since the k7 series is close to the same signature as the ad series but better comfort and build.

Honestly, I think if you really wanted a good V in this pricepoint to maybe consider getting a Pad swapped DT 880 at 600 ohms + amp and dac. As post pad swap dt 880 is quite a fantastic headphone and becomes a V shape sound if using a thicker velour, suede, or hybrid just not so much on sheepskins as that makes it quite a bit warm. Granted in this case tygr will have better soundstage and imaging the tygr doesn’t respond well with fiddling with it’s signature. I can’t recommend the DT 990 as a daily driver due to just how sharp it sounds…

Hopefully some of this helps you out, sorry for the long post but was quite a bit to cover on. Just like I stated in this though, what I wrote is also my opinion.


All of these budget planar headphones are very bass anemic to me. The tygr is your best bet. Bass hits much harder and has more quantity than my 4xx. It has good clarity in the mids and highs, especially the highs. I enjoy the tygrs much more for heavy metal


Please do not apologise. This was incredibly helpful!

I would still like to ask the following, and want to mention 1 thing: The statements about the HE400i that I made in this post are from people who had quite a collection of headphones themselves, with one of them being a sound engineer having thousands of dollars worth of soundgear. He also recommended the 400i.

Now as you said, audio us completely subjective and i am not blindly following the advice just because he said so, but to get to my question: is it true that the he400i respond well to EQ? Otherwise in that case, I can always EQ the bass back a bit into the headphone.

It just sucks i cannot test any headphones in my city. I will however be trying the TYGRs soon at someones place, so I at least have 1 sound demo and could potentially judge of that. Brightness is great for games I noticed, but a tad bit more low-end would help me out to enjoy them more. I think that is considered V-shape, correct?

Any way, thanks for the help! I am slowly leaning more to the TYGRs now. I hope that my demo of them will be enjoyable. I hope the warmth won’t be a dealbreaker.

For now, that seems like a great idea. Would help with the enjoyment at least a bit.

Appreciate the comparison. Which of the 2 do you use the most as daily driver and could you elaborate why?

That’s a bit odd not going to lie… why someone would recommend a bass lite bright planar for someone wanting to game and listen to metal, after already having complaints about another bass lite headphone is a bit beyond me. Planars are great but they definitely aren’t this like some end all be all hardware over dynamics. I think the problem here is that to play competitive FPS headphones such as 400i and others are more ideal… bass is like the last thing you want as a gamer playing fps unless your totally casual.

Most headphones respond quite well to EQ so this is by no means just the 400i or planars being exceptional in this regard. Tygr does not unfortunately. Yes, the 400i responds well enough to it but may not get enough bass to your personal preference due to just how dialed back that one is on low end… it really isn’t all that great for the low end to begin with. You would need to consider equalization and maybe a pad swap as too much eq will cause issues.

That’s great then, definitely give that one a try. The 400i doesn’t necessarily need tested out as its signature is rather similar to your ad500x however, 400i I would say is more detailed, better slam, definitely better speed, bit more resolving overall. It just has very little bass.It’s great for those who like orchestra or classical kinds of genre where bass isn’t particularly too important.

Brightness is great for games unless it’s too sharp. In games such as RPG where you hear alot of vocals and other things such as games with orchestras with a lot of cymbal crashes and other high pitch strings brightness can cause a lot of sibilance or discomfort to the point of being quite fatiguing. Then again, bright headphones depend on the person as everyone hears things a bit different so we all have our own limit on how much brightness is acceptable.

As for V shape. V shape is when the low end is brought up, mids are recessed, and highs are brought up. Tygr in particular may have that slight peak but its still remarkably close to neutral making it a weird kinda lop sided V if anything… but the bass is noticeably raised yet controlled enough to not be overwhelming muddy or in the way of a gamer’s sound placement for fps.

Well, heres what you can take from this, post-testing the tygr. You wanted more warmth, however the ad500x is recessed low end meawhile tygr is above neutral low end. If the warmth is too much, you may have a preference for a more neutral bass if this is the case it can definitely narrow down what your looking for by a pretty large degree

thats the frequency response of the 400i as seen the bass is most definitely under the neutral line.

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lol hell, I would probably tell someone to go grab a Fostex T series for a bassy planar that or Aeon. Audeze are dark excluding a couple that are strangely a bit bright and Hifiman is 9 times out of 10 bright with lacking bass which bugs me as I love the sound but I always hated the idea of buying a headphone that I plan to EQ or tinker with out of the box.


Warmth isn’t really what I am looking for. It just a tad bit more bass. Maybe i didn’t use the right term to describe it.

However, maybe a bit of warmth will make the overall listening experience quite enjoyable. Cause I said, the AD500x are too boring and maybe bass-only won’t give what I am looking for. One set that I tested before was the 599 and they were so warm and muddy I just couldn’t bare to listen to them. The mid bass hump was too much, even after some mild EQ.

Thanks for the input anyway! I am very eager to test out the TYGRs. I think if I like their sound I will buy them immediately.

Some people also kept mentioning the HD560s as an option, which seems to be a none-veiled Sennheiser headphone which would be more of my taste. But i have not seen any reviews in it yet.

Warmth = Low end. Low End = Bass.

Yeah, 599 and 558 are like that. 598 and 58x are the good ones there and newly 560s

Can’t speak for that one considering how new it is… there is reviews and it’s own thread on here though.

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I managed to test out the TYGRs today. I have posted this huge comment on the TYGR post already, but this is my (long) impression:

So I was able to have a short test with the TYGRs today and I must say I am fairly impressed with them.

I have been considering either getting the HE400i 2020, the TYGRS or the HD560s as my next upgrade over the AD500x from audio technica.

Audio technica was my purchase right after the Cloud II. Even tho they serve me well for gaming, they are very boring for music. Music has no punch to it and especially for my rock and metal needs, it doesn’t hold up.

I managed to hit someone up close to me who purchased the TYGRS and I could have a direct 1-to-1 comparison with my AD500x.

They blow the AD500x out of the water in my most humble opinion.

technica AD-line seems to be quite well recommended for competitive FPS gaming. I haven’t touched a competitive FPS myself while testing them out, but I noticed while playing Borderlands 3 that TYGRS not only had a WIDER soundstage but also slightly better imaging and directionality. The imaging/soundstage actually went to as far as my ears could go, while on the audio technica they feel a little bit more centered. Not by much, but still fairly noticable. Footsteps could really reach the outer edge and pinpointing them was extremely accurate. For some reason, for a headphone that is praised for it’s competitiveness, I felt like hearing footsteps with my AD500x were a bit more difficult. it was as if they were hiding beneath something which made them less audible. I geuss the “airyness” of the sound really doesn’t do them justice.

Also I have noticed that the technicas sound way too “airy”. With the TYGRS I got a lot more “body” to the music I listened too, and not only that, it felt like as if the music was slightly higher quality too.

My source is youtube, so it’s not as if I listen to high quality audio files, but I listened to the same 7 songs on both headphones and the sound sound less nasaly and a little bit more detailed to me, as if you suddenly switched from youtube to spotify premium.

Low-end punch was very nice to me. The increase in treble was noticable, but for me it didn’t hurt or fatigue my ears. My only gripe with the headphone is how the mids are recessed. I was continuously trying to compensate for it by upping the volume. Bit of a bummer on that part. To me the warmth was only noticable during gaming. With music it didn’t really stand out on me. They are not as warm as Sennheisers for instance.

This was tested on a Windows-PC with no AMP. They do require a little extra juice to get more volume out of them.

My listening volume on my AD500x are on 30% windows volume. The TYGRS were on 80%.

I also played it on the guy’s iMac, which seemed to have a much better soundcard. The bass was much more refined. It sounded a little bit more forward and it’s quality was also much better. The warmth seemed to dissapear a little bit too, but it was still present.

Overall very pleased with how they perform. For my own personal taste I think the 560s will be a better choice, but the TYGRs are an extremely capable headphone. If I could turn in my AD500x for TYGRS at that moment I would in a heartbeat.

yep, despite being a warm headphone tygrs are fantastic for both competitive and casual use.

that gets a bit better later on down the line of the ad series… still, I would take the tygr over them any day.

well, it should be this way… ad500x isn’t warm so it lacks in body and has the mids and highs emphasized and pushed forward. At the same time, different tier of headphone

hmm, they should definitely be warmer than the Sennheiser, you may be lacking some amplification power in that regard, just noticed you have no amp so yes this would be the cause of that as lacking an amp with the tygr depletes some of that warmth. At the same time, yes the mids are recessed however provided proper amplification is available some very minor equalization can fix this right up as it’s not a very big recession at all below neutrality.

and I assume this would be more regular listening volume? yeah, weak motherboard then… definitely consider an amp in your near future.

eh, 560s aren’t bassy though which may be your issue if you haven’t tried them yet… very neutral sounding. Still, glad to see you enjoyed the tygr.

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Yeah trying them out will be the main decider. I do not really look for rumbling bass or anything, just a little increase than what the 500x would provide. I understand that a neutral bass might not really give a very rumbly, slammy and thumpy impression but its not something want I want to achieve anyway but I might have not explained that well in my post and comments.

I read your TYGR review and noticed you also are not as much of a fan of a warm sound like I am too. That is why I am more inclined to get the 560s.

I assume that the 560s will have a little bit more bass than the AD500x and have a bit more elevated mids than the TYGR? If that’s the case then I think I am sold on the 560s for now.

you may find your a bigger fan of the 58x jubilee then, it has a bit more bass since the 560s is much more neutral. Not like a big amount but what I would consider just right for a nice sennheiser. One of the reasons I actually like the 58x more.

nah, understandable… 560s definitely isn’t rumbly. It’s just there and rather natural sounding.

I think it will go without question that I am a bright headphone fan, however I try to check out other sound signatures as well. I like Warm headphones it’s just they have to be rather particular… in the tygrs case, well there’s a good reason it stays in my collection if that helps. It’s a fantastic headphone for that warm signature and something you normally don’t find unless you travel above the $500 margins so far from my experience… the only alternative I found was technically the Nighthawk Carbon but that ones discontinued and a bit harder to find(at the same time dark and bassy).

ad500x is bass recessed, 560s is neutral, tygr is raised. ad500x is mids forward and present, 560s is mids slightly raised and textured(sennheiser house sound), tygr is mids slightly recessed. AD500x has highs ever so slightly raised up but pushed forward, again 560s coming in with being neutral no real sparkle or anything like that but has plenty of detail, and tygr has a mix between under neutral and an ever so slight peak that gives it the impression of being a very subtle V signature headphone.

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The 560s so far sound like a good middle ground. I am eager to buy them but it unfortunately will take a while before I can upgrade haha.

Yeah so far I am also slightly leaning to a more brighter signature. The 58X was one of my very very first “possible-buys” because of the reputation that they have, but I somehow cannot get to like a warmer signature. As you mentioned, the TYGRs were underamped and probably didn’t display it’s true warmth cause of it. Even with the limited warmth it had, it could make some things sound slightly “muffled”.

Muffled might not be the right word to use, but a warm signature makes me feel like some sounds are lacking detail. It is hard to explain. The 599 for instance were just outright terrible to me.

I appreciate your deep-dive-insight on all of this tho! It really helps with making the choice.

I think I am slowly also finding my signature too. V-shape used to be my go-to, but the recessed mids are now somewhat bothering me, so I guess neutral-bright seems to have preference, but I need more experimentation to judge that.

@gowawax649 Any update what you went with, manage to test those 560S?

@factorkay Unfortunately will not be able to test them until later this year. Really can’t wait to get them tho.