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Before you buy headphones: A hopefully helpful guide for newbies - Page 10

post #136 of 147

Thank you!

Being very new to all this and also being very overwhelmed by it I really appreciate you taking the time to post this!
post #137 of 147
Hehe I wish I knew about #1 and #2 beforehand, but it's been a good journey so far

Should be stickied and included in the welcome PM
post #138 of 147
Realize that the better your headphones, the more miserable you will be if your CDs are poorly mastered. I still enjoy some of the "hot" CDs that I have (not horribly hot ones like "Californication", just ones that are kinda hot - the XTC remasters, for example), but the older and/or better mastered CDs are so much better to dive into.

I wish I had known about the "loudness war" earlier.
post #139 of 147
Hey boo, I was wondering if you might include a warning like this somewhere in the guide. I posted it in a newbie asking for help thread and IMO most people new to headfi could use the advice.

Quote:
A note about purchasing stuff on head-fi based on lurking here and so on: I was in your shoes when I got here. Reading about stuff, not trying it out and then buying some items. One thing to realize is that most people posting here are passionate about audio / gear / music and thus tend to exaggerate. A reason for exaggeration is that when comparing two things that are similar, the reviewer will obviously notice and voice the differences more.

Another reason is psychological, if you shell out a couple of hundred/thousand dollars on a product (be that an amp, a dac, a piece of wire), you will want to feel good about yourself and you will happily notice small differences (or even imagine them) and post about the "night and day change". I'm not implying people here lie, just that to someone who isn't a music tech and is new to this world, most amps and sources reviewed here will sound very much alike. And yet if he doesn't have a chance to check these things out, he will feel the need to buy a new amp / dac / whatever, so he can achieve these night and day differences.

Just to check these things out, I popped my senns off the amp/dac combo and onto a jvc minitower (a good quality one, nice (digital) amplification for the speakers, but not a "high end" headphone choice). I listened to a track off a cd, then I came back to the PC and popped that into foobar. Is there a difference? Yes. Is this a HUGE difference? No. Add to that that I have a tubed headphone amp, which is supposed to be again a huge difference from solid state amps like that in the jvc. The receiver had enough power to drive my headphones. The differences are in nuanced things like presentation and soundstage, and some additional detail.
post #140 of 147
Quote:
Originally Posted by luckybaer View Post
Realize that the better your headphones, the more miserable you will be if your CDs are poorly mastered. I still enjoy some of the "hot" CDs that I have (not horribly hot ones like "Californication", just ones that are kinda hot - the XTC remasters, for example), but the older and/or better mastered CDs are so much better to dive into.

I wish I had known about the "loudness war" earlier.
btw, for me californication is one of the few albums which sounds better as a ~160-192 kbps mp3, because you notice the clipping less.
post #141 of 147
Oh, it's really hard to feed the headphones. The headphone itself may cost 300 bucks but a good system for it will cost over 1000.
Anyways, thanks for shareing. I am thinking of a pair of K701, but I definately know I do not have the source, amp, etc.
post #142 of 147

This should be mandatory reading for new members.
 

post #143 of 147

Wow, so much time was put into this... it applies to all members and why isn't this stickied?

post #144 of 147

It used to be sticky, but all the stickies got lost when the site got switched over.

post #145 of 147

Why can't we re-sticky it?

post #146 of 147

Found this page on Apple's website: 

http://store.apple.com/us/browse/guide/headphones?mco=MTM3NDg1OTI

 

It's a good concise guide (with a few diagrams) to the different headphone/earphone types, noise cancelling vs noise isolation, even a bit about why some 'phones cost so much.

post #147 of 147

Great info.

 

Could have saved me some money if I read it earlier!

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