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Beyerdynamic T90 Premium Stereo Headphone

94% Positive Reviews
Rated #23 in Over-Ear

Posted

Pros: Bass, Treble, Overall very balanced neutral

Cons: Non-removal cable

This was supposed to be an extremely short review of the Beyerdynamic T90 after owning them for several weeks. Didn’t really notice the sound changing (burn-in) as I’ve owned them. Setup is a custom built desktop running Windows 8.1 and Ubuntu Gnome 14.10. Music sources are FLAC files played through Foobar2K and streaming Google Play Music. I used ifi nano > ifi micro ican > T90.

 

Ergonomics

Beyer as usual knocked the ball out of the park. I never thought something would be as comfortable as the DT990, but Beyer has outdone themselves. Clamping is light. Almost feels like you have nothing on your head allowing you to get lost in the music. The pads are microfiber. No itchiness or scratchiness I’ve experienced with velour or some other materials. Ears do not get hot after multiple hours of use.

 

The headphones themselves are beautiful to behold in person. They look good in pictures but even better when they’re in front of you. Everything about the headphone feels well crafted and you can tell time was put in to make an excellent product.

 

If I do have one complaints, it is the cable. Length is decent but at the price the headphones sell for, they should be removable.

 

Sound

Before getting these, I probably did too much research. I’ve been through a few headphones over the past few months (HD600 x2, HE400, Sound HP100, AKG Q701). While each of them had some great qualities, there was always something wrong like the comfort, mids, or soundstage. So I ended up selling them in the For Sale section or returning them. The T90 is the one that felt like the complete package.

 

Treble

Many reviews mentioned that this had a lot of treble and that almost stopped me from getting them. I’m glad I bought them because the treble is a non-issue for me at least. I haven’t heard any sibilance or any sharp or piercing highs. Maybe my ears have adjusted after having the Q701. The highs extend well and are very present but not overbearing.

 

Mids & Details

The details are incredible. You hear things you didn’t even know were there before. A singer’s breathing becomes clear. Instruments that you didn’t hear before are now there. I have gained a new appreciation for producers.

 

In Bel Biv Devoe’s poison, you can hear the bass line in other headphones. But it is more textured and detailed on the T90. To test the mid range of headphones, I like to listen Coexist by The xx. On the opening song, Romy’s voice is so clear and engulfing. You can hear her breath after singing a note.

 

Hearing the T90 is like going from SD to 1080p. The T90 do a great job of showing all the details but not throwing them in your face. You can get immersed in the music but the details still shine. It’s like sitting in the middle section at a theater.

 

There is a negative to the hearing the detail though. You hear all the details even the bad stuff. It is truly like putting a microscope on your music. As I found out, a lot of the music I listen is not mastered well. There is static and random pops and crackles. The mastering problem happens on more modern music especially pop. Most of the 80s music I listen to (pop, r&b) sounds incredible.

 

Bass

This may not be the basshead’s headphone of choice, but there is good bass here. There is quality and quantity. The bass does not bleed into the other parts of the music. Impact is solid and well textured with a quick decay. The bass depends on the song. If bass is present in the song, then it will be there in the T90. On Candy Girl by New Edition, there is very little bass. However on Disclosure’s Tenderly, the bass is very present and addictive. Because the bass doesn’t become overbearing, you can appreciate other parts of the songs but still bobb your head.

 

Soundstage (& Imaging)

One complaint I read about the Q701 is that the soundstage was too wide. I didn’t get what they meant till I got them. Basically the soundstage was wide all the time even if the music needed something more intimate. The T90 is soundstage done right.

 

The T90 has a decent sized soundstage. It is wide but there is also depth. While it’s not perfectly 3-d, you can easily discern where a sound is coming from. To recycle the theater analogy from earlier, it really is like sitting in the middle section at the movies. Instrument separation is top notch. Everything sounds like it’s in its own lane on the same road and they come together to make some sweet music.

 

Final Thoughts

This was supposed to be a micro review. Don’t know how I ended up rambling for so long and I almost thought about going further.

 

Anyways, the T90s are the most balanced sounding and best sounding Beyers I’ve heard. Whatever is in the Tesla technology is magic. I’ve never smiled and bobbed so much listening to music before. Simply put, these are the greatest sounding headphones I have heard so far. To be fair, these are the only $400 plus headphones I’ve heard as well :P.

 

Hierarchy of headphones I’ve owned so far

T90 > HD600 > HE400 > HP100 > DT990 >= Q701 > DT770 > M50


TL;DR… Comfortable and great sounding. Buy them especially if you can find it for around $400 on eBay like I did. Make sure the quality of your music is up to par (no 128kbps mp3s) and mastered well.

 

Some Eyecandy :beyersmile:

 

 

 

Posted

Pros: Extended tight bass, good amount of sub bass, clear detailed highs, netural mids, good soundstage and imaging

Cons: Mids are distant and may sound thin then depending on source, grills are dust magnets and are easy to scratch. Bass boost may cause rattling

 

Some say the t90 is 95% of a t1. And while the t1 is easily the better can and the t90 does fall short of being a totl headphone. It’s pretty close, and definitely has the potential to be your end game headphone.

 

Unboxing

Pros: Simple minimal packaging, comes with a carry case, no annoying plastic to throw out

Cons: Lack of accessories, said case isn’t portable

 

While it lacks a lot of accessories,  the fact  it comes with a useful carrying case is a plus that many other headphones don't even have. Other than that easy to unbox and no fussy plastic to throw out.

4/5

Burn in

I bought a year old demo with 10 hours of burn in, so I don’t think I can give my impression for this category.

 

N/a

 

Design

Pros: Classic beyer looks with more premium materials

Cons: none

It’s a beyer, so the t90 has that base look from any beyer you can get. Just with nice metals and cloth.

 

10/10

 

Build

Pros: Tough steel, inspires rigidity

Cons: Hinges don’t inspire confidence, non removable cable, dust and scratch magnet

 

It’s quite the tank, despite its refined looks. However the hinges do feel a bit wobbly. And even worse the grills are scratch magnets with a scratch and a few scuffs appearing on both sides with prolonged usage. Still said scratches very light and needs close attention to see. But it’s still there.  It also collects dust and dandruff like there’s no tomorrow. Not good for those who like visual perfection. But despite my worries of the hinges, even rough use of the headphones did nothing to damage them significantly. Hence why I think it’s quite a tank.

 

7.5/10

 

Comfort

Pro: Classic beyer comfort

Cons: Moves a bit when moving around

 

(Again) It’s a beyer, and like all beyers, comfort is near perfection. Though the headphone does move a bit when I turn my head. Which is a tad annoying. No big deal though.

9.5/10

 

Sound

 

Pros: Plenty of sub bass and bass impact, clean highs without any sibilance, solid imaging and detail. Engaging detailed bass.

Cons: Mids a tad thin and lacks a bit of engagement. Bass boost and poor amping can cause rattling at loud volumes, soundstage while decently sized and encompassing is a bit compressed to the top.

 

First of all this is a U shaped can. This means while the mids are not recessed whatsoever, it’s also not enhanced in any way unlike the bass and highs.  And the bass and highs are great.

 

Bass

While bass boosting and poor amping can cause rattling a loud volumes, even at decent volume you will get great bass impact and subbass. Plus it’s still pretty tight and detailed when it needs to be. Great for bass heavy songs, movies and games.


 

Highs

The highs sparkles and is quite clean, and unlike many others reviewers, I didn't get the much feared sibilance. Lucky me ^.^

Mids

The mids to me are the worst part of the sound. Though by worst I just mean it’s just good, quite good in fact. Just not as good as the bass and highs. Nicely detailed, but to me it’s a bit too thin and a tad distant for my tastes. But otherwise done very well.

Soundstage/imaging

The soundstage is decently wide and deep, but it isn’t huge. A good part of the sound is still “inside my head”, and I also feel the soundstage is a bit compressed to the top. But imaging is great. It was the first headphone that made me realize that in one of my favorite jazz songs, the piano moves from left to right and back to left. Never noticed that on my older headphones.

 

Forwardness

Mids are a tad distant, but the highs are right between forward and distant, and the bass is quite forward and engaging.

Speed

Short of TOTL status, but it’s not slow either.

9/10

 

 

Conclusion

If you skipped everything and just went to the conclusion, let me tell that this is probably the best u shaped can under 1K. I hadn't tried any other u shaped at at below the price point that did the sound sig as much justice as the t90s.  But the mids didn’t sound as enjoyable as some mid heavy and neutral headphones I tried and there was a rattling issue with bass boost at loud volumes. Nor will it beat flagship 1k+ headphones in any way. Still the aspects that fall short of totl headphones are still stellar even at it's mrsp price point. If you take the t90s for what it is, a pre summit fi u shaped headphone, you’ll be treated to engaging visceral bass with clean detailed highs.

 

 


40/45

Posted

Pros: Detailed, elegant sounding. Outstanding comfort. Well balanced.

Cons: Occasional piercing treble (depending on recording)

My first review on head-fi.  I have only had the T90s for a few weeks, and have maybe 30 hours of listening time so far.  I have mainly been listening to ripped CDs (44.1khz/16) and some HD 96Khz/24 recordings.  I've also listened to some 320kbs streaming audio.  My audio path is a Macbook pro to an O2/ODAC via USB.  I also have a DacMagicXS that I use at work.

 

I came to the T90s from a set of ATH-M50 cans.  Putting on the T90s was a revelation.  I never realized how much more music there was to the recordings, in almost all cases.

 

One of my personal peeves regarding playback systems in general, is a tendency for many to emphasize one aspect of the sound, heavy bass for example.  The T90 is well balanced at all frequencies, with the possible exception of an occasional over-emphasis of treble.  Even so, I am not in the least bit bothered by this as it seems to be somewhat recording dependent and is easily dealt with.  For me, the bass response is just right.  Ever present, but not overbearing and with a pure sound.  The mids shine and really highlight how much better these are than the ATH-M50s I have been using.

 

I'm not going to talk about soundstage or other somewhat abstract audio concepts, except to say that when I listen to music through these headphones, I feel very close to the music.  Not in the middle, but close enough.  I don't feel as if I am in a large concert hall, but more a smaller venue, maybe a night club.  This may be more to the type of music I listen to, primarilly acoustic jazz, folk, with some classical mixed in.

 

The sound of the individual instruments always comes through well with the T90s.  Ensembles sound right, with my only criticism being that some string ensemble tracks can sound a bit muddy.  I think this is one of the most difficult types of music to get right for any playback system.  Voices are magnificent on these headphones.  Especially female vocals.

 

To conclude, the T90s have been a significant upgrade to my listening experience.

Posted

Pros: Great Overall Tonality, Accurate Bass, Extreme Resolving Power, Very Comfortable and very affordable...

Cons: Clicking sometimes in adjusting headset

I can not believe these headphones are rated at #64 in this category.

 

I have had many headphones in the last few years and sold most of them once I discovered these Beyer T90's.

 

No headphones are perfect and a lot of them are far from even being close.

 

I am not going to be-little other cans here but the T90s deserve a listen to and compare for yourself how great they are compared to your other cans.

 

Using cuts from Brian Broombergs "Wood" cd allows you to see how well and accurate bass from a musical instrument really can sound in a set of headphones.

 

The bass is as good as my LCD2's IMO.

 

The human voice both male and female are re-produced wonderfully, from Linda Rondstadt to John Hiatt.....

 

The T90s are a very accurate but very musical set of headphones, very immersive and amazing uncanny ability to reproduce what the recording engineer was trying

to capture when mastering.

 

They are quick and snappy when the source material demands it.

 

Guitar plucks are reproduced with depth and wonderful tonality, Preston Reeds, Instrument Landing, "Bye Bye Boo Boo" is reproduced with magnificent sound.

 

If the source material is well mastered and recorded the T90's will allow you to experience all of it wonderfully.

 

Some say there is sibilance etc on the high end.....but listen to a live band or concert and listen to how sharp and brittle some instruments sound when they are whacked unmercifully...or breaking glass.

 

The T90s reproduce these sound very accurately...if the high end is "hot" you will hear 'hot"....

 

These cans are very comfortable and fit my normal sized head well. The only minor hit to me is the adjustment sometimes moves a little bit when putting them on or off.

You get a clicking sound from time to time in this on/off removal, dependent on how you hold them etc..really a nit to me.

 

Searching for a really great transparent set of headphones in a $500-$600 range to rival the $1K range, I find the Beyer T90's fit that bill very nicely.

 

Highly Recommened

 

Alex

Posted

Pros: extended range, very neutral but also very lively, great detail

Cons: large

I purchased these headphone after comparing to the Sennheisers HD650, the Grado PS-500, Hifiman HE-400 and HE-500.

 

They are very neutral but have a lively sound with great extension into the high and the lows.

By neutral I mean they give what is on the recording. There is no bass boost. If it`s there you will get it and as deep as it goes.

 

By comparison they are closest to the HD650 slight smaller soundstage but lively instead of polite. Your foots starts tapping to the music and you are taken away. 

Much more range extension, both bass and treble compared to the Grados. 

As for the hifimen, as much detail as the he400 but none of it`s high end quirks. A little less detail than the HE-500, but more bass and high extension and much more usable.

 

Comfort is very high. Though they are large they fit well.

 

Using a good amplifier makes a huge difference. Other commenters complaining about lack of bass either were missing exagerated bass or used a underpowered amp An ipod won`t give you good bass. I use a Fiio E12 for travel with my ipod.

 

At this level of sound quality, the recording and your source are the most important factors. Maybe the over 1000$ headphones can do better but only with the best sources.

Posted

Pros: Amazing instrumental imaging, amazing detail retrieval, beautiful sound stage.

Cons: non-detachable cable, unforgiving with poor recordings .

Beyerdynamic T90 Review

Headphone - Beyerdynamic Tesla90 {250 Ohm} [Open]
Portable Amplifier – iFi iCan Nano
Player Source – Lenovo Y470
Music Source – 16/44.1kHz CD FLAC & 24/192kHz FLAC
Music Bands – Eric Clapton , Westlife , Michael Buble , Jason Mraz , Chris Daughtry, David Cook, Maroon5 , Taylor Swift , Green Day , Avenged Sevenfold.

Introduction
Having done research on the leading products on Hi Fi headphones over the past few months, I’ve audited a small group of Hi Fi headphones, such as the Senn HD800, Beyer T1, Beyer T5, Beyer DT990, AKG 701, AKG 702 etc. Every one of these headphones showcased very different sound signatures and built quality. I have read online reviews regarding these high end headphones and weighed their pros and cons before deciding to lie my money on them. Measured Graphical Statistics of these headphones from companies like Golden Ears, Head Fi & Inner Fidelity were also taken note of. The T90’s definitely stood out from the rest with its price to performance ratio, where I bought it on the second time I audited them.

First Impressions

Design
These headphones looks like they have a bold statement to deliver when you first look at them , most of the parts which look like metal , are metal . The construction is very rigid, looks durable and feels good with a premium weight in your hands. The headband and ear pads are microfiber velvet, comfortable to put on over extended periods of time, the headband and ear pads are fully removable, allowing it to be easily exchanged at a small cost. The earpads felt like they are filled with memory foam and are thick enough to provide comfortable cushioning and prevents your ear from touching the headphone driver felt padding (which was a problem for the DT series) It is very comfortable and fits like a glove with the aids of multiple swivels. The opening for the drivers on the outer side has a beautiful tight weave which prevents dust from interfering whilst maintaining its open headphone properties. You cannot see through the Headphones or see the driver itself like other headphones, however it is quite evident that it is open due to the sound produced where I would touch on later in the review. The headband could be extended in notches, discretely cut. The cable is a 3m fixed rubber insulated cable which prevents one from changing cable types for sound tweaking, it extends out to a 3.5mm audio jack with a ¼ inch audio plug screw on. Overall Design felt exquisite and felt like no corners were cut during the assembly process. The Beyerdynamic T90s were Designed, Hand assembled and Tested in Germany.

Frequency Response of the headphones were wonderfully and tastefully tuned , having low bass reach whilst keeping it minimally amplified to make the music interesting . The mid-range were good and have a slight warm tint. The treble reach is good, it is well controlled and do not cause discomfort with sharp piercing spikes like some other HiFi headphones, it is bright enough to keep the treble realistic and believable, it does have very well presence in the music and occasionally tells you “hey I’m here!” Overall a rather “fun” sounding headphone, not boringly balanced, but yet enough to keep the listeners looking for “fun” and critical listening smiling. The Beyerdynamic line of headphones generally have a very unique sound signature they have kept over decades, this unique sound signature kept in an interesting manner that one will only understand after trying a few from their DT or T line of headphones.

Sound Stage is one of the thing which sets this T90 apart from Closed headphones, from my experience, Open headphones will definitely have a wider soundstage than Closed headphones, that was the main objective of Open headphones from the start, to recreate a broader sound stage. They were truly impressive, the sound stage was wide. You are no longer confined in the small room of which Closed headphones were limited to, you felt that there is a sudden space between the music and you, making it a very pleasurable listening experience, echoes and reverberations becomes present in realistic amounts making it natural and absolutely satisfying. Each instrument has it’s space and you could hear them being displayed very beautifully as itself. The depth and resolution is simply a treat, an audio bliss.

Instrumental Imaging is of a high calibre with the T90 , and I am not exaggerating it just because I’ve spent good money on them , because the instrumental imaging is of a very high standard, perhaps one of the first few things you would naturally take into notice when running them, immediately you know how many instruments are present in your music, upon that, you know exactly what key each individual instrument is on, at which angle the instruments are placed and played, at what distance these instruments are played in relative to other instruments, are the more forward or backward, it’s very clearly evident and superbly enjoyable to be able to pin point all of the instruments present in the music, that is also the reason why new electric music never caught my ear, they were veiled and had no depth and resolution in them . The instrument details and textures were stunningly true, guitar’s strums and plucks were so real, you could picture the strings vibrating, piano were so clear, you could feel the hammer striking the piano strings, Violins were smooth and beautifully displayed, Drum bass kicks has a wholesome body and head to it. Snares tight and impactful, Hi Hats and Crashes were neither confused nor disorientated, but well controlled and delivered even when the other instruments were present. Rides were true with the ring, Bells rang clear like a bell. It is undoubtedly a very pleasant listening experience, as you know very clearly each instrument is doing its job, the imaging of the T90 is very close to its flagship brother T1 with about 90% resemblance in my opinion. And that also was backed up by a number of other critical listeners whom have owned them both.

Clarity, as claimed by the manufacturer the total harmonic distortion is of 0.05%, as you already know, many companies do put false frequency response range, rounded off impedance, and similarly the low 0.05% should not be taken too seriously. But however, the music sounds neat and black were black, there were no noticeable sibilance and it could perform as it is even in higher volumes with no change in personality Detail Retrieval is good with minor nuances being picked up and delivered with great realism, everything feels just right with the T90 and there were little or nothing to complain about.

Music Genre Handling were interestingly good, they could handle a vast variety of music genres and display them wonderfully for your pleasure. They could handle most of the genres thrown at them with great results. They will sound as they should be displayed. However they are very sensitive to poor recordings and will hiss and spike in poor recordings to tell you explicitly that they are not its cup of tea. Hence, lossless or high quality music must be fed to it, or you will have a rather terrible time with these headphones too. But clear enough, if you play mp3, it’s clear that you will not achieve the depth, detail, imaging, realism and quality as compared to a quality audio file.

Isolation, being an open headphone, it is obvious that it isolates minimal environmental noise, which means, in trade of the wide sound stage, you get a headphone where you could only use at home, in a quiet environment, and end up disturbing the quiet environment with your music. As an open headphone, you could hear the chatters that happen outside of your headphones and the people outside can too, hear your music very clearly. Running at my comfortable volume, the sound could be heard clearly throughout my room even when I have the headphone on. And my little brother sleeping a meter away could easily tell the title of the song I just played. Hence, these headphones are meant for home and to stay home.

Amp Preference, I’ve heard that the T90 performs very differently with different amplifiers and if you manage to find one that suits your preference, you’re in for an immersive good time. I am currently using a good solid state portable amplifier, but I will go on and give tube amps and other solid states a go, to double this theory and to discover the potential of which the T90 holds.

Conclusion
“ Everyone whom have owned these pair of headphones come back to tell me of their new found love “ The T90s are better sounding than the more expensive HD700 , it fought tiers up and resides on the Beyerdynamic T1’s shoulder. Overall Delivery is an interesting, unique pair of headphones which is both enjoyable for pleasure listening and detailed for critical listening. I do strongly recommend this for audio enthusiasts who are interested to know how a high end headphone sound like, and are in for a preview of high end audio from headphones.

Review Updated as of 26/3/14

(Singapore Only)
Auditioned Various headphones at Jaben & Stereo. Do check their stores out, Headphones, inEars, Amplifiers, DACs and more could be auditioned just by asking, both companies has great customer service, items which Stereo do not carry, high chances are that Jaben does. Jaben allows bundles and bargains, making them a recommended place to check out if you are buying more than 1 item per trip. Stereo has more lucky draws, Fixed Prices or Occasionally Fixed Discounts.

https://www.facebook.com/JabenSG
https://www.facebook.com/stereoelectronics?fref=ts

Posted

Pros: Sound Quality, Price

Cons: Makes my ears warm, not as comfortable as I would like

I have owned these headphones for about a week.

 

The sounds quality is great but I'm not sure if I can wear these longer than 1 hour. My ears get way too warm. Would love a bit more airflow.

Posted

Pros: Bass, clarity, transparency, imaging, comfort

Cons: Treble, build quality for the price, price

Pros: Bass, clarity, transparency, imaging, comfort, 

 

Cons: Treble, build quality for the price, price

 

Introduction

I should start off by describing myself, experiences, among other things. The term "audiophile basshead" fits me well. I like bass, but also appreciate great sound quality. Give me bass and a good soundstage and I will be a happy camper. With that being said, I tend to look for open headphones that have good bass...which this definitely fits. I have only had/tried three other headphones. Those being M-Audio Q40s, Numark Electrowaves, and Beyerdynamic DT990 pros. The Q40s where my first "real" headphones other than gaming headsets that I have used for music and gaming. They were quite nice, but died within months, which lead to the Numark Electrowaves which were a replacement to the Q40s as InMusic (the parent company) didn't have any replacements for the Q40s. The Electrowaves were the same thing as the Q40s basically, except for more quality oriented which leads me to wanting quality over quantity...thus leading me to the DT990s. I had the DT990s in February ´15, but returned them within a month as they couldn't handle much bass. They did have quite a bit of bass...but a boost was out of the question which limited the bass I could get form them. After months of researching, this leads me to today and to the T90s. 

 

Burn-in so far: about 50 hours.

 

Equipment: FiiO E6 + Behringer UCA222 cheap, but will edit once I get a better amp or amp/DAC.

 

Ergonomics

These are basically the same as the DT line, except with a different design. Not much to add here other than they are stylish, yet simple. 10/10

 

Build Quality

I would say this is a significant con. For $650 (I paid $549) these have okay build quality. They have the same generic build quality as the DT line which makes no sense. For $650 I would expect more metal, but instead...there is plastic. Had the mesh been metal, I wouldn't be writing this, but it's plastic. I certainly don't think this will be falling apart or breaking any time soon, but I expected more. I could just be picky here, but I really do expect a premium feel for a premium price. 8/10

 

Comfort

These are quite comfortable, the earpads are valour and are plush as well as soft. The clamp is a little more than I like, but it's acceptable. I do find the DT990s to triumph in comfort though, the earpads on those were softer and plushier, perhaps it is because these weight a little more, but it's not a major difference. I do find that these can get a little warm though and airing out the ears every once and a while is necessary, but not a big problem. 9/10

 

Sound

Overall, this is a quality oriented pair of cans. These are not neutral by any means. They are hot, and they can be sibilant to some. The treble on the DT990s only bothered me slightly on some tracks. For these, they tend to bother me a bit more in general, but it's nothing to complain about. The biggest thing about these cans are what you put into them is what you get. They are extremely transparent, and will give you what you want, this is a massive pro as you can do what you want with the sound to make it sound a certain way. 

 

Treble

As previously stated...these are hot. The treble can be harsh to those who are sensitive to it. With a little EQ drop in the treble, this potential issue is fixed. Upon being fixed, the treble is airy, and crisp. It does exactly what it should. I cannot really go much into it as I really don't pay attention to the treble, but I would say it does treble well and that listening to it without an amp/DAC or whatever else, the treble is going to be the most present. 8.5/10

 

Mids & Details

Mids...I really don't pay much attention to these, nor am I familiar with many terms, but from what I can hear these are very present. No matter what situation I have put these cans in, the mids were definitely there, which I assume would make them "forward". As far as vocals go, this pair doesn't do as well as the DT990s, but vocals are still done very well. I think the 990s had an artificial boost to the mids that gave vocals a better sound, but I am unsure. The vocals seem very natural and as they should with the T90s. The mids are just behind the treble when just listening to them and nothing else. 9/10

 

Bass

The reason why I love these is that they can take a massive boost to bass. If you don't want a whole lot, they can do that, if you want a lot, they can do that. They can't go to an XB1000 level, but they can definitely do bass. Out of the box, they have some thump, but it depends on the song. As I said before, what you put in is what you get out, and that is definitely true for the bass. Compared to the DT990s, they have less bass overall, but can handle a lot more. There really isn't much to say here other than it can handle a lot. It really depends on what the song has in it and what you want out of them. I can say these are not basshead cans out of the box, but can be if you amplify and EQ them to act like basshead cans. Although, don't expect anywhere near the same bass levels as heavier basshead cans. Inn regards to the three bass regions, I find that sub-bass is slightly lacking, while upper bass is present and mid bass is very present accounting for most of the bass. 9/10

 

Soundstage (& Imaging)

This is where I was a little disappointed. The DT990s has a wider soundstage, but these have a deeper soundstage. Personally...I prefer a wider soundstage. That being said, these do not lack soundstage at all. They are wide to the point where they need to be, but sadly, not any more than that. There's really not much more to say in regards to soundstage. As for imaging, I am not familiar with imaging, but I can say it definitely is there. I personally think the DT990s did a better job of this, but you can definitely tell where things are with these, that's really all there is to it. 8/10

 

Leak

Open headphones leak...that is fact. In comparison to the DT990s, they leak more. I could put a more dark EQ on the 990s and put them on 50% volume and have them not leak much at all. These won't do that, but it will help. I wouldn't advise listening to these in public since they leak quite a bit, especially considering the treble is higher on these. These are definitely more open than the 990s, that is apparent. At 25% volume with just my DAC, I could hear the music from about 1 meter away. Where as, with DT990s I kind of could, but not as much. They aren't really loud and obnoxious, but people could hear and maybe make out what you're listening to. 8/10

 

Isolation

Again, these are open, so isolation won't be great on these. With my DAC, amp, and EQ on 25% volume, I could hear my TV and make out what what being said when set to a volume of 10. That is slightly louder on my TV, so the isolation is definitely not great. With that being said, don't expect isolation from these unless at volume where leak is an issue. 7/10

 

Drivability/Impedance

These are rated at 250 ohm, so that means they're harder to drive...right? Not these babies. My Note 3 was able to drive them with more than enough volume very easily. The Note 3 may have an amplifer (not sure) but they can be driven with a cheap amplifier such as an E6 like I am using. 10710

 

Final Thoughts

Overall, I greatly enjoy these headphones. There really isn't much else to add that I haven't already said. These headphones are like a little soldier. They do what they're told to do, and I think that's how the Tesla driver is designed. Beyer says they're "precision" magnets, and I definitely agree with that. They deliver the music how it's meant to be heard by default, but are more than open minded as to EQ and amplification. They lean heavily towards enjoyable rather than analytical. From metal to rap to pop to EDM to screamo there wasn't anything they couldn't make sound amazing, I am impressed. 

 

I would highly recommend giving these a try. While they are expensive and not everyone will have the pleasure of trying them (which is why I listed price as a con) they are worth every single penny I paid for them. I am extremely happy with these, and am excited to see what else Beyer can do with the Tesla drivers. 

 

Overall rating: 9.5/10

 

TL;DR - These are a very transparent pair of cans that can make anything sound amazing. They do what is asked of them without compromise. They may be expensive, but they take music to the next level.

 

Update: After about 20 hours burn-in, they seem to be getting warmer in the sub-bass and mid bass region. I'm listening to them more naturally just from a headphone jack and they sound amazing. What I liked about the DT990s was they sounded great any way you listened to them, these do take that to a new level. They are still hot, but not as much as they were. Will update again at 50 hours. I have to say though...I think I have fallen in love with Tesla drivers, the precision and efficiency is amazing. 

 

Update2: After about 50 hours burn-in, there isn't too much difference other than them being significantly less hot. The bass does seem to have tightened up a bit more too as well as is more pronounced. Listening them through my headphone jack with no EQ or anything of the sort, the treble has really tamed down. Using a vocal and treble enhancing EQ the treble still isn't bad, it was hot at first...but it's definitely more mellow now. Still enjoy them, and enjoy them much more in a natural state than I did before. 

 

Update3: I got a Samsung Galaxy S6 (early, thanks T-Mobile) and it is said to have a Wolfson WM1840 DAC chip. I was using a Behringer UCA222 before, so this is a definite upgrade...and I could see that right away. The soundstage opened up a bit and the sound got more airy. Will update when I try high quality files and with the E6. 

 

* Copied from T90 thread. 

Posted

Pros: Detailed, Exciting, Has Soul

Cons: Very System Dependent, Sibilant

beyerdynamic_t90-2.jpg

A lot has been written about Beyerdynamic’s T90 Tesla headphone. It’s easily one of those headphones that falls in the “love it or hate it” category. The sound signature is interesting, it’s involving, but it’s definitely not for every ear.

The T90 is often referred to as the DT990’s big brother. In a sense that is true and in many ways it is so much more. Having had both, I feel confident saying that you will love the T90 if you like the DT990. While the frequency responses are relatively similar, the T90 is a truer reference level headphone. It takes everything good about the DT990 and makes it better: Smoother treble, wider soundstage, tighter bass, more space and depth, and, of course, better build quality (particularly when compared to the DT990 PRO). 

In all, the T90 is much more refined, and it should be when you consider the price difference. Compared to its higher priced sibling, the T1, I truly believe you are getting probably 80-90% of the performance for a fraction of the cost. My particular gripe with the T1 is the angled driver that makes performance very dependent on the cup placement on your head. The T1 will sound very different depending on how the driver is lined up with your ear, and this is something I personally can’t stand. Otherwise, I’d say the T1 is simply a touch more refined across the frequency range, but this is a classic case of diminishing returns as prices rise.

Anyway, all that said, I find the T90 to be one of the pickiest headphones I have ever used. I’ve gone from absolutely loving it... can’t stop listening, “Just one more song,” to “Get these things off now.” So I guess I have a love/hate relationship with it. The T90 is quite sensitive, it gets loud very easily, it’s incredibly revealing, the treble can get peaky easily and what all of that means is that without a high quality source with the power to get the drivers really moving and recordings that match the T90’s characteristics, they can be incredibly unpleasant to listen to. 

For example, mated with my Ray Samuels Audio “The Raptor” tube headphone amp, the T90 performs admirably. Despite some background gain hiss, the T90 balances out the Raptor’s warm, lush tube sound to create a dynamic, full-bodied atmosphere that engulfs your ears and transports you into the concert hall. This combination always has my toes tapping and head bopping across all of my preferred genres. It’s easily one of my favorite headphones with that amp. The T90s driven by my Woo Audio WA6-SE on the other hand is absolutely underwhelming at best, and this saddens me. I can’t technically explain why, but the sound is thin, the treble is incredibly sibilant, and they lose all of the gusto that they had with the Raptor or the solid state Grace Model 901. With the terrific little ALO Audio Pan Am I use on my PC, the T90 performs somewhere between the Raptor and WA6-SE, regaining some warmth and a mellowed out high end with nice treble extension. But my point here is that the T90 is very amp dependent and it will likely take some trial and error to get the T90 performing to its full capabilities, and this is why I believe it is often loved or hated. 

I’ve owned a lot of headphones: AKG K701, Beyerdynamic DT990 PRO (review), Beyerdynamic T90, Brainwavz HM5, Grado GS-1000i (review), HiFiMan HE-500, Sennheiser HD650 and Shure SRH840 (review). Each of these is unique in its sound signature, but the T90 is one that I think can really excel at everything and every genre, but it’s all about getting the synergy right with your amp/DAC. Get it wrong and you’ll likely hate every second of your listening session. But when you get the match right, the T90 absolutely sings. It shimmers; it has soul. It’s engaging for all of the right reasons and it will take you another step closer to Audio Nirvana.

 
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Beyerdynamic T90 Premium Stereo Headphone
Description:

The Beyerdynamic T90 Premium Stereo Headphone is designed to provide a hi-end audiophile listening experience while remaining comfortable during long-term listening. The T90 features an open circumaural design, coupled with Telsa transducers for rich detail and enveloping sound quality for a completely immersing listening experience. The T90's wide frequency response captures the most subtle detail with pristine accuracy. Its elegant appearance is also functional with velvet lined earpads and headband providing maximum comfort. Impressive sound experience from the start Tesla technology with highest efficiency Single-sided cable Ear pads made of microfibre

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