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beyerdynamic DT531 - first impressions

post #1 of 44
Thread Starter 
Half of our editor staff went on a shopping spree to Saturn, recently, so I joined in: I found the DT531, that had caught my attention on the beyerdynamic site a few days before, on offer for only 179 DM (~ US$ 70) - so I grabbed one.

I didn't spend much time with it, yet - some first impressions: Not bad, but I have to cure my headache. No, really, for a K501-owner the DT531 seems very bass heavy - I'd say at least + 6 dB. And I'm not really used to loud bass drums playing in the midst of my head. This disturbs also the soundstage for me...

And it's more efficient than the K501. I tried it directly on the sl-ct570 portable, too, and that worked quite fine for me. Not too loud, but acceptably loud and in fairly good quality. The bass seems less dominant when I connect the DT531 to my old marantz amp, though - maybe due to better control. Relative sound quality: quite good (with integrated amp), fairly good (with portable, compared to most earbuds) - just not the ideal phone for me.

Comfort: The soft circumaural earpads (mounted on tilt&swivel-earcups, btw) have an inner diameter of ~ 6 cm (~ 2 1/3") - my ears fit in. The clamping is a little harder than with the K501, but not bad. I'd say: All in all it's good.

Build quality and looks: Simple and sturdy - the cable might be a little too thin and short for some people. But as the DT531 also works with a portable, a thicker and longer cable might have been a bad idea... All in all: good.

Price/performance: If you can get it for ~ US$ 70 - 80, it should be worth a try. Recommended, if you like bass.

Greetings from Munich!

Manfred / lini

P.S.: Tomcat: Sorry, but Saturn didn't have any of the bigger beyers - I searched thoroughly!

P.P.S.: I also bought some new earbuds, the aiwa hp-ed400 (~ 50 DM). Very first impressions: Quite nice and comfy fit, but the cables are rather microphonic. Sound: Acceptable, thin as usual... But with a little repositioning I get quite a nice sound, so maybe it's nice for other people - not for me, because they don't stay in that position in my ears. Well, another pair for my useless-earbuds-drawer...
post #2 of 44
Sorry about the headache. But you might actually get used to all this Beyerdynamic bass, who knows. I certainly did. If you asked me, the AKG bass is 6 dB down - at least.
post #3 of 44
Thread Starter 
Let me just add my second impression, now: I have tried the DT531 for a little longer, now, connected to the old Marantz PM510 - and, yes, I think I can get used to the truly impressive beyerdynamic bass. It's interesting, because I heard details (echoes, for example) in the bass I had never perceived with the K501, before. I just miss some clarity in the midrange und lower highs - e.g. snare drums just sound "snarier" on the K501.

Yet, I have to try some older cds - maybe the DT531 sound even better with the somewhat recessed bass, that we used to have in the '80s...

tomcat: So how much better, would you say, does the DT990Pro or the DT931in midrange and lower highs?

Greetings from Munich!

Manfred / lini
post #4 of 44
I could only advise against the 931 or 831. I perceive both as far too bright and fatiguing. The 990 Pro - 250 Ohm seems to have the same drivers or at least the same driver technology, though, what makes for better dynamic range than the 531. And the 990 Pro has the most believable soundstage of the bunch, it is utterly transparent without ever being shrill. I just perceive its midrange and lower treble as smooooth (Beyerdynamic claims it to be diffuse-field-equalized according to IEC standards). I think I have said it in your initial 531-thread: The 990 Pro-250 is simply my favourite headphone.

There is, however, a certain possibility of "headache" from it. It has the deepest, tightest and most effortless rendition of bass of any headphone I know. Listening to something like a double-bass or even a cello is utter joy with the 990 Pro. It will convey a sense of "body" of instruments unlike any other headphone I know. This might be its most striking difference to the AKG K501. Those instruments are just "there", you don't have to listen for them. I find it utterly involving.
post #5 of 44
Hey guys I love BASS, can't get enough of it. Would this headphone you guys are talking about be good for that sort of thing.
are there better phones out there that give out more powerful, deep, tight bass?????
post #6 of 44
Thread Starter 
defcom: Well, my first try on the DT531 was Crystal Methods "Vegas" - so, yes, I'd say this is a good headphone for techno/ebm (not only, but especially...). Of course the bass seems tighter on the K501, because the DT531 has a lot more "body" beneath - whereas the K501 often can compensate too boomy recordings, just because its bass reproduction is a little recessed.

And I'd think the DT990Pro is even better than the DT531: Concluding from Tomcat's descriptions, I believe, the DT990Pro might also be good for electro/trance - because of the wider soundstage and better balancing. But, of course, the DT990Pro costs quite a bit more, too.

What I found very attractive in the DT531 is its really proper sound for a good price, the impressive bass reproduction and the surprising fact, that it works loud and fine enough with the SL-CT570 porti...

So, getting the DT531 first doesn't seem such a bad idea to me: You spend less money in the first place, but if you happen to like the beyerdynamic sound (especially bass) a lot, you can still upgrade to the DT990Pro - and keep the DT531 as a high quality phone for portable use.

Greetings from Munich!

Manfred / lini

P.S.: Tomcat: Thanks for the answer, by the way.
post #7 of 44
There is one more option: you could buy the Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro - 250 Ohms (and tell us what it's like). It is the closed sibling of the open 990 Pro and supposed to be diffuse-field-equalized as well. And Beyer says it utilizes an innovative bass-reflex-design. There is one German review on the Beyerdynamic website emphasizing its impressive and truly deep bass, and I remember a review at the HeadWize forums that dealt specifically with its impressive bass performance. I think the reviewer claimed it was the best he had ever heard from a headphone.

Now, I do not know it, I don't know whether its bass would be simply overblown or as controlled, or whether the DT 770 Pro would be as smooth throughout the midrange (this is still the musically most important area), but the 770 Pro-250 could very well have the most impressive bass ever. So you see, all you have to do is get it and review it for us. Come on, DEFCOM, you need it, you are listening to nothing but dance and techno. Don't you see? You must have it. You must.

One more thing, you absolutely must do, and this is serious: Don't get carried away, beware of hearing damage, and please don't ever listen too loud. Please. There have been HeadWizers who have ruined their hearing with this - permanently.
post #8 of 44
I must have, he, he.

Oh and who has ruined there hearing, and how. I bet everyone here has somehow destroyed there hearing, headphones listeners usaully like to turn the volume up loud.

Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro - 250 Ohms

One more thing I was at my local HMV music store and at there CD listening booth they had these headphones call DSP(i huess that's the name) and they sounded good for there price. Anyone here heard of these phones before?????
post #9 of 44
You wanna good dance/techno/remix headphone. The SONY CD3000 is the phone you want.

You can get the SONY phone at www.millionbuy.com for $399(also DEF i'll let you listen to my phones)

here is the exact link to the phones http://www.millionbuy.com/snymdrcd3000.html

Now if you still want to get beyerdynamic cause the sony's are expensive then the Beyerdynamic DT 250-80 is the phone you
want seeing how it overall delivers a pleasant musical representation that places emphasis on the bass

Good phone for dance/techno at an affordiable price $179, but if you can get the SONY CD3000 that is one pimp ass phone for electronic music.

PS. Is it me or do the DT250-80 look like the SOny V6???
post #10 of 44
Hey, anyone know where one could pick up some 990 pros?
post #11 of 44
Originally posted by chych
Hey, anyone know where one could pick up some 990 pros?
Right here my friend! http://www.headphone.com/ProductsHea...namicDT990.asp
post #12 of 44
Hm, are you sure? It doesn't say "990 pro" and in the description it says 600 ohms (though in the specs it says 250 ohms)... However, I did find them at www.musicians-gear.com
post #13 of 44
chych, a few days ago I ordered a pair of DT 990 Pros from Jan Meier for $140 including shipping (plus a $10 PayPal fee because I didn't want to bother getting a money order or traveler's check).


I also ordered some new pillowcases...but that's another story.
post #14 of 44
what difference between the DT 990 and the DT 990 Pro??????
post #15 of 44
The Pro version is the only version. If you take a gander at some pics of the DT 990s, they all have "Professional" written on 'em. Often retailers will just leave off the "Pro," that's all (they're silly that way). One thing to keep in mind is that the newer version of the DT 990 has an impedance of 250 Ohms. The old version's impedance is 600 Ohms. The new version is the one recommended by Momma Bosh's favorite little bastard. I bought mine from Jan Meier not only because his prices rock the Casbah, but also because he only stocks the latest version of the DT 990.

For more info on the 990s, click the following link and look for posts written by Tomcat (he's the High Priest of the Church of Latter-Day DT 990s):

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