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Mission Impossible...closed phones vs speakers - Page 2

post #16 of 35
Thread Starter 
very insightful post, halcyon. thanks!
its all common sense, but i appreciate a knock to the head once in a while.

how are you finding your W100s these days?

you think theyre a poor match for my requirements?

my bday is in a month or two, so i may get the Etys later, esp since im really wanting a pair of phones for on the go.

im not going to rush out and just buy what everyone says, but everyone, keep posting your ideas. its through your opinions that i'm learning what phones exist.

post #17 of 35
i dont wanna just throw money away, but i want a pair of phones that will somewhat satisfy ungraditis
this is one hobby where money is sucked through an overpowered garbage disposal.

i bought a used set of akg k501's for $85. and i just tried modding them by removing the finger guard. i ended up with one nick on one cone. ouch! i put a small drop of soft glue on it. sonically it sounds fine. think anyone is gonna give me that much money for them, now? so it's a $85 loss for me. live and learn. anyone wanna trade beyer 831's for a slightly damaged k501?

then i just lost $8 on pads, about $10 on parts for the grado mods (foam, velour, glue, wood), ordered beyer 880 pads for $35, paid $300 for unheard ad10's which i will have to make new pads for...

then there's the guys who upgrade their phones. then they upgrade their amps. then they upgrade their dvd/cd players, then upgrade their wires, then upgrade their interconnects...

it never ends.

sometimes i wish i had just bought the gradoes and remained blissfully ignorant. i also wish someone made comfy seats for my miata, but that ain't gonna happen any time soon...

maybe it's just the amp source (the bt831's have a 250 ohm impedence) and they must be matched suitable. but out of the equipment that gerG had, it sounded good on all of it. yes, you'll have to get used to the sound. it took me about 5 minutes. and i still say that they're much sweeter than senns or grados.

hey, it's only about $80. you can buy one and if you don't like them in a week you can sell them for the same price. guys like me will buy them right away. of course i'll have to get rid of the ad10's and the ak501's, but ...
post #18 of 35
Incoming! (more free advice).

On the 831s, I really like the sound. Very revealing AND very deep bass. Much more like a nearfield speaker system than most phones. Unfortunately they were not a good can for at-work use. First of all they are not really "closed", only semi-closed. I suspect that this may be what the whole 800 series is all about. They didn't shut out enough external noise, and they do leak some music. Second, they are large and conspicuous. The size and lovely colors are visible for a long way. The 831s also demand your attention. Great for serious listening or watching movies, but not as good while working.

I currently use DT250-250 at work. Not great isolation, but better. Warmer character, with even bolder bass. The bass response is great for listening at low levels (although they still sound great at high levels). They are on the small side, but they fit me extremely well. The biggest pain is the long cable plug that sticks down out of the left cup. I will be fixing that soon. They are very easy to put on and take off all day long. I do sometimes wish that I had the 80 ohm version when using the ipod, but I have never heard them.

I also use Ety4s earphones at work. They are hands down my favorite for comfort, stealth, and isolation. Only problem is that it takes more time to route the lead, clip on, and put them in. If you can get away with isolating yourself from the world most of the day, these would be my first recommendation.

I agree 100% on halcyons advice about other peoples advice: you must listen for yourself. One great option is Headrooms 30 day satisfaction guarantee. You can try the Etys (or any of their other products) relatively risk free. I say relatively because I have made the mistake of ordering 2 different phones at once from them, fully intending to send back whichever one I didn't like. Inevitable outcome of course. I liked them both. My wallet hurt for a while after that one.

As for your initial statement, I will never give up my speakers for headphones. I will also never give up my headphones for speakers. Two very different experiences, and I like both.

Good luck

post #19 of 35
nana, you may want to start looking at people's locations under their avatar. i think LobserSan is in SF, and there has to be many head-fi'ers in CA...

that said, many phones will show preferences for one instrument or another. but you won't be able to tell without direct comparisons. if you don't make those comparisons you'll probably never miss them. ignorance IS bliss. i can hear differences between cans on string instruments, vocals, horn instruments, bass instruments. one may make an acoustic guitar sing, another may not, but that other one can make vocals sing, or a trombone may sound sweeter on one can, but the bass may sound not dep enough. sound placements may change, instruments go back into the background, or come forward to the same degree. it's called personal preference. and that's the fun of this hobby. and that's why so many people have more than one can.

you'll be able to learn to live with just about anything. i would think that you need a forward sounding can for rock, with sharp bass transients, and a sweet midrange. at's may be what you're looking for, just be aware that they will also have some sort of colouration.

listening to Pink Floyd, "Wish You Were Here" on akg k501's.
it'll sound different on my ad10's. and it'll sound different on my grados, and it'l sound different on...

you say you have a maxed out meta42 and it doesn't sound 'right'? hmmm. guys?

since the 580s/600s are open... i dont want to consider anything beneath that level of quality.
that's a high bar you've set. i take it you meant 'beneath that level of SOUND quality", right? have you auditioned sony mdr-cd3000's? some high end audio equipment store should have these in your area.

otherwise, since these are for work, buy something that can be destroyed or stolen and you won't be too upset about it. heck, why not buy some of those $55 panasonic dj phones. dt770's seem like a logical choise as they're made like a tank, are under $100 used, are good for rock with their bassiness, etc. i just wonder what they sound like under low volume.
post #20 of 35

Beyer 831


If you will pay for UPS shipping there and back I will gladly loan you my Beyers. They have been broken in, but hardly used.

PM me.

post #21 of 35
Thread Starter 
the posts get better and better, thanks guys

yeah, lobster and i revelled in Cal's (UC Berkeley) defeat of stanford on saturday. kin3tix is in the area. theres at least one or two oakland residents, some in SF...

im going to try out a pair of ety ER-4s tonight. ill take my work right along and test them out. i was gonna wait on Etys, but these are a great price so im not gonna skip this opportunity.

i havent seen or heard the sony 3000s, but hopefully ablaze will tell us of his impressions...ill start searching the forum on these to get a little info.

i do wanna try out some 770s, their name keeps coming up, esp with the new Beyers coming.

btw, i think the meta is burning in, and is sounding great. i think my ears werent use to the use of it, and i was using Grado 125s, which may have contributed to the harshness i heard previously. i am very much enjoy JMT's handiwork. pictures will be posted soon...

thanks for the suggestions. halcyon, Greg, wallijonn, keep em comin!
post #22 of 35
I just sold my pair of ATH-A9X's to a friend of mine at work for the same price I bought 'em from millerdog for ($160). They were GREAT! I bought ATH-W100's thinking that they were the logical next step but they really aren't. They definitely have some coloration and this is how I would describe it...

Anti-aliasing kind of blurs edges resulting in a smoother image. It doesn't take two seperate groups of polygons and poorly fuses them together. It "makes diagonal edges appear smoother by
setting pixels near the edge to intermediate colours
according to where the edge crosses them." Well, I kind of think that the W100's have no harshness whatsoever. There is a very warm and round quality to them which is hit or miss depending on style of music... hell, maybe even cd to cd. They kicked ass on Mahavishnu orchestra... Godspeed... Beatles... didn't like 'em on Local H, At The Drive-In...

Anyway, I can fully vouche for the ATH-A9X's. If you can find someone selling them, they'll be cheap. If you get 'em off of AudioCubes, they'll be like $220 which is kind of ehhhh....
post #23 of 35
Thread Starter 
I am now the proud owner of a pair of Ety ER-4S.

I definitely dont think these phones are perfect. but am i disappointed, not in the least. my impression is that they are very neutral, leaning towards cold. they excel in the midrange. above and beyond any other phones i have ever tried, these seem the most detailed, and i can hear for the first time tiny little details in the background.

guitars sound clear and more evident than before. bass is lacking, but i knew what i was getting into. im not a big bass head in any case. and if i really want my hip hop or electronica to sing, ill pop on my 890s. i do imagine getting some 770s or something in the future, esp if i can borrow a pair.

ill have more impressions later. i have only worn these for 1 CD's length, so i need to give them much more time.

its time to change my avatar...team Be-ty

until the reviews of the new AT's come out at least
post #24 of 35
Thread Starter 
the more time i spend with the etys, the more i appreciate their detail...but i really need something a bit warmer...more full and round bass, a wamer sound overall...

going to visit another head-fier Friday, hopefully i wont fall in love with the AKG 1000s...i cant afford it

cant wait for those AT reviews...alas, my upgraditis has not been cured...
post #25 of 35
take a nice acoustic guitar and vocal (like Mariah Carey's first cd)cd's with you to audition the k1000's. listen to an acapella, or monestery monks.

hope he's got a nice amp for the k1000's - though they'll sound good out of any quality amp's speaker terminals.

hey, you don't really need those hp890's or ak501's, do you?

you'll either love or hate the k1000's. with the right type of music, you'll love them. hope he's got enigma #2 - just the vocals will give you chills on the k1000's.
post #26 of 35
nanahachi, if you listen to the K1000s your wallet is doomed. You have already professed a fondness for detail. The K1000 do detail like nothing else. You have been warned.

Good choice on the Etys. That model was my first high fidelity headphone. A couple of standard warnings: equipment that you used to think sounded great will begin to grow audio-warts. The Etys are a great ear training device.

After all this time, I still can't make up my mind on the bass. I did a side by side with my Sony V6, and concluded that the ER4S had better bass when at the same volume level. However, you will soon discover that you listen at greatly reduced levels with the Etys. It is a rather insideous effect. When you take them out you will notice how godawful loud the world is. This is a very good thing, because it preserves your hearing. It also makes the bass seem thin. Running them at higher levels will bring out great bass, and warm them up. I tend to like the low level, so I actually resort to a bit of bass boost. I have found that I typically set the volume level at the lowest level that still has the whole spectrum present. Since the LF goes first, I bring it back with a smidge of boost.

ok, I may be a bass head, but I am a damned picky one!

Please find ATs and listen to them for a while before you commit to them. I have only heard the AD10, but they were very cold. tbd if they can be tweaked sufficiently.

post #27 of 35
gerG, he's DOOMED. DOOMED I tell you!

had the stars been in the correct alignment I would've had my k1000's two days ago. damn it!

we can expect nana to have a for-sale note shortly... i figure by next wednesday
post #28 of 35
Thread Starter 
hahaha, you guys are too funny. thanks for the info on the K1000s...but i REALLY cant even let myself conceive of buying any. not for a while at least. ill just give them a listen, and categorize them with the $20,000 a pair speakers I've fallen in love with. unattainable.

walli, you looking to buy something?

i may fund-raise at some point, but the collector in me wants to hold on to what I have for a while longer, unless someone's dying to buy.

happy thanksgiving all.

keep posting, you two
post #29 of 35
now that you mention it i put the philips hp890's right up there with the ath at100ti's in the looks department. those things look so plush. remember me when you sell them to get those k1000's. hey, they're ONLY $450 i figure you'll keep the ety's, but you also have the sony's you can sell...
post #30 of 35
Thread Starter 
greg, wallijonn, i am doomed

i have 2 new loves. the K1000 and the RS-1. i want to buy an RS-1 sooooo badly. i wish i could justify either. i melted when i heard the Grados. i would never ever take them out of my home, but i dont know if i can justify them since my speakers sound so great...(you know i'll buy some anyway).

and the k1000....at least my current setup probably couldnt handle those yet...i think i would want to get a tube amp to run them out of (Norh perhaps?).

I should probably get an amp to run either anyway.
and then get a new source. SACD
and then ICs and a power conditioner...

damnit head-fi, ill echo that ignorance IS bliss.
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