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Closed cans: ATH-M50, ES7, or Senn HD25?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Hi all,

Been doing some reading, still have a few questions. I'm looking for some closed cans to wear at work. I want good isolation, yet good comfort. I have a big head, so some smaller headphones don't fit.

As for the sound, I'll have an amp (either SS or tube), and I'll be listening to techno and rock. I like the sound of HD600s and triple.fis - both are smooth enough that I can enjoy them for hours without fatigue. I've heard ATH-M50s for about half an hour, and I liked the sound - not overly bassy, good mids, decent treble. However, I'm curious about the other two headphones, as the ES7s are cheaper and I've had good experiences with Senns.

Can anyone help me out by commenting on the following (and please feel free to make a comparison between only two of the three if you've not heard the third)?:

Which is the best at noise isolation? Specifically, at blocking out mechanical noises (like a centrifuge).

Which is the most comfortable for long term wearing? Do any have issues with large heads? (when I tried the M50s, I had to fully extend the headband).

Are any of them super bassy or boomy?

Do any of them have poor treble extension?

Do any have a particularly prominent "closed can" sound?

Do any of them have cold weather issues (i.e. freezing when wearing outside), or are particularly fragile?

Bonus question, for Canadians: Any good local (i.e Toronto or Canada-wide with shipping) sources of these cans?

Many thanks!
post #2 of 15
Thread Starter 
Anyone?
post #3 of 15
Well, I think that you may have trouble wearing HD25s on your large head Sam - I remember when I had them, I found them uncomfortable after about an hour or two, but my head is so much smaller than yours. I have never heard an ES7, but you can audition them, as well as the M50s and HD25s at Moog Audio. The guys working there are real nice and will let you listen to any of their full-sized cans.

P.S. From what I've read though, ATH-ES7 is a step below HD25 in SQ, and I am pretty sure that it's not as good as M50s either. It's definitely colored - forward in the mids and aggressive in the bass/highs from what I've read. It apparently does great with rock. Not sure how it'll sound with techno though.

Oh yeah, as for isolation, HD25 isolates best - enough for noisy trains/subway and busy street. ATH-M50 should be second, and ES7 is apparently the worst at isolation. I know that HD25 isolates A LOT more than M50 though - it's really quite a difference, especially in really noisy environments.

Hope this helps.
post #4 of 15
just heard the HD-25, all I can say is issolation is great
and they do sound nice whit techno.

I had the Hd-25s on volume level 10 of 40 on my muvo in a garage(there they fix cars) the other day, didnt hear anything but music
post #5 of 15
On the HD25s:

They isolate really well, including such mechanical sounds as construction and engines.

The HD25s are not the most comfortable cans in the world, sadly. With the velour pads, I have to take them off after about 2 hours. Not too bad, but certainly not Denon 1001s.

The bass on these are good, not too boomy. I wouldn't say they have poor treble extension, but it's nothing to write home about either. They do sound like closed cans, but the soundstage was larger than I expected from such small cans.

These are built like tanks, and I wouldn't expect winter issues, especially with the velour pads.
post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks to all for replying - if anyone else can weigh in I''ll be keeping an eye on this thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonathanjong View Post
The HD25s are not the most comfortable cans in the world, sadly. With the velour pads, I have to take them off after about 2 hours. Not too bad, but certainly not Denon 1001s.
Thanks JJ. Any idea if the HD25-1's fit over a jumbo-sized head? Also, are you suggesting the Denons might be a good solution for my needs? I've never heard them, but they are within my price range.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioTroll
just heard the HD-25, all I can say is issolation is great
and they do sound nice whit techno.
Excellent, as that's what I listen to often

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pianist
I have never heard an ES7, but you can audition them, as well as the M50s and HD25s at Moog Audio.
AWESOME! I didn't see the M50s on Moog's website but I called them and they do have stock. They also said they'll have HD25-1's in stock on Wednesday, so it looks like I'm going to Moog then. Sadly both the M50s and the HD25-1s are $240-$250 CAD there, but you know how much I hate customs!
post #7 of 15
Sennheiser HD25-1! but ES7 is pretty though...
post #8 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by oogabooga View Post
Thanks JJ. Any idea if the HD25-1's fit over a jumbo-sized head? Also, are you suggesting the Denons might be a good solution for my needs? I've never heard them, but they are within my price range.
Sadly, no. They feel and sound great, but their isolation: Epic FAIL.
post #9 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by oogabooga View Post
Hi all,

Can anyone help me out by commenting on the following (and please feel free to make a comparison between only two of the three if you've not heard the third)?:

Which is the best at noise isolation? Specifically, at blocking out mechanical noises (like a centrifuge).

Which is the most comfortable for long term wearing? Do any have issues with large heads? (when I tried the M50s, I had to fully extend the headband).

Are any of them super bassy or boomy?

Do any of them have poor treble extension?

Do any have a particularly prominent "closed can" sound?

Do any of them have cold weather issues (i.e. freezing when wearing outside), or are particularly fragile?


Many thanks!
I prefer M50 over the rest. I owned HD25-1 for half a year. After I got M50 I sold it immediately because I prefer the sound sig of M50.

HD25-1 sounds a bit muddy (I tried it with the stock cable and the blacksilver cable, too; FYI) when comparing with the M50. If you like Senn "veil", HD25-1 may the right can for you. M50 has better clarity, bass and treble extension. The negative point is the mid which is a bit roll-off to me.

and when I bought the M50, I also auditioned the ES7, and finally end up with the M50 since it has better clarity. ES7 tend to have warmer sound.

Rate: M50 >> ES7 >> HD25-1

About the comfort, this is another reason I chose M50 since it is more comfy than the ES7. and when I compared with my HD25-1, the AT blow the Senn out of a water, too.

Rate: M50 >> ES7 >> HD25-1

For the build quality, HD25-1 comes first to me. It is very durable and the best point is every part is replaceable. M50 is in the second place. Although there are few people worry about the headband, but it's the new design which has the metal inside. So it's hard to get cracked. Another good point is it is foldable. ES7 to me, go for the last place because of its headband which is a bit hard and the metal connected to the ear cup is not well designed unlike its brother ESW9.

Rate: HD25-1 >> M50 >> ES7

Speaking of isolation, HD25-1 wins the rest hands down. The isolation is really great esp. when using the pleather pads. M50 comes the second because of the circumaural design and ES7 is in the last.

Rate: HD25-1 >> M50 >> ES7

About the cold weather, M50 takes the first place since it is the circumaural and the rests are supraaural.
post #10 of 15
Speaking of M50s in cold weather - their cable gets really stiff, which does not happen with M-Audio Q40s or HD25s for example. This stiffness adds a lot of annoying microphonics.
post #11 of 15
I own an entry level Denon, the AH-D1001s, and love them. With a larger budget in the future, I intend to purchase their best phones. Even the budget model have excellent bass and midrange. They are comfortable and non-fatiguing to listen to for long periods of time. Moreover, they isolate the spouse from the music, which definitely is a bonus for peace at home.
post #12 of 15
in australia, the es7's are not in the same price league as the other two you mentioned (got my es7's for $124 delivered, while the other phones you mentioned are up around $300 or more). Hence, I got the es7's (just waiting on delivery).
post #13 of 15
in short... keep your 600s. Or, if you just want some kick around cans, check out the 205s... best bang for buck possible imo. A pretty darn nice sound signature, with a drop off in the higher mids and highs. Easily fixable with a little EQing (like on ipods). If you REALLY want isolation, however, get some in ear monitors / canalphones... FAR better for isolation than any closed phone.
post #14 of 15
Oh yeah, completely forgot. Sam, you should also check out AKG K181DJ. They also have these at Moog Audio. These are great cans for the price with nice, punchy bass, very clear mids and extended highs. They also have surprisingly good soundstage for such a small headphone with really good depth. Comfort level is about the same as on HD25s though - that is not so great. Otherwise, the K181DJs are a nice alternative to HD25s and ATH-M50s IMO.

Note: Just to avoid confusion, I am talking about K181DJ, not K81DJ. K181 is like a big brother of K81 and sounds better in just about every way.
post #15 of 15

Moog Audio will rip you off.

 

They sell the M50s at $220. 

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