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MDR-SA5000... Can they be bettered?

post #1 of 274
Thread Starter 
Hello,

This is the first post I have made in a long time. I have spent lots of time on this site, and I have read many reviews and impressions on all kinds of cans. I know its taboo to just ask without doing research, but I grow tired of everyone having their audiogasms, and want some specific answers :P.

If the Sony MDR-SA5000 is my favourite headphone do I have any hope of finding a better sound in a can? They are quick, brutally detailed, have amazing tone, but are a bit fatiguing, especially with rock music, my dominant genre.

MDR-SA5000 are paired with a solid state headphone amp.

The fatigue is my only complain, really. I don't want something "warmer", "richer" etc etc. I want something as cold, detailed, quick and clean as this can, but without the fatigue, so I am guessing a TAD more "musical" and with a bigger resolution/soundstange but the same detail.

I am 19 years of age, my source is a Asus Xonar STX and apple lossless files. I have a little dot MK5 solid state amp, and NAD cd player as my other set up. I own Sennheiser HD 600, AKG 702, and Grado 325i, as well as the MDR-SA5000

They are all amazing in their own respect.

Senns for being excellent late at night listening. Resolute and relaxing.

The AKG 702 are great, very spacious midrange/highs, and offer quite substantial bass and slam. They are amazing but I find they aren't distinct enough on their own... generic awesome, if you will.

The 325i are great for what they were, being my first hi-fi can at the age of 16. They have a soft spot for they were my first entry into hi-fi. But, as rich, smooth, and lively as they are, they are a dumb can. Dumb in the sense that they have no idea about what is actually going on in a song, just pleasant.

Each can offers a nice taste, but I crave for something to truly better the MDR-SA5000, not just be a nice distraction, only enjoying the Sony's more.

I find all these headphones superfluous, but I can't seem to sell them, as I am not truly happy with only one. If there is one can anyone could think of let me know. I am guessing this will lead into Stax, which I cannot afford, but who knows!

Any feedback, advice, or opinions would be welcome.

I do not have any tube equipment.

Thanks
post #2 of 274
This smells heavily of a Beyerdynamic DT880. Very detailed yet musical + all rounders, particularly the DT880/600 ohm.
Scales very well as well. However, I dunno how well the MKV will drive the DT880 600 ohm so a 250 ohm one should be good to be safe. I recommedn if can find a 2003 edition of the DT880, to get that but the '05 250ohm DT880 (non pro) will do great as well. I had this dilemma too back then of choosing between the DT880 and SA5000 and chose the DT880 because I wanted musicality.
post #3 of 274
When I go back to my beyers I feel them so congested, just my 2 cents
post #4 of 274
Quote:
Originally Posted by sokolov91 View Post
Hello,

This is the first post I have made in a long time. I have spent lots of time on this site, and I have read many reviews and impressions on all kinds of cans. I know its taboo to just ask without doing research, but I grow tired of everyone having their audiogasms, and want some specific answers :P.

If the Sony MDR-SA5000 is my favourite headphone do I have any hope of finding a better sound in a can? They are quick, brutally detailed, have amazing tone, but are a bit fatiguing, especially with rock music, my dominant genre.

MDR-SA5000 are paired with a solid state headphone amp.

The fatigue is my only complain, really. I don't want something "warmer", "richer" etc etc. I want something as cold, detailed, quick and clean as this can, but without the fatigue, so I am guessing a TAD more "musical" and with a bigger resolution/soundstange but the same detail.

I am 19 years of age, my source is a Asus Xonar STX and apple lossless files. I have a little dot MK5 solid state amp, and NAD cd player as my other set up. I own Sennheiser HD 600, AKG 702, and Grado 325i, as well as the MDR-SA5000

They are all amazing in their own respect.

Senns for being excellent late at night listening. Resolute and relaxing.

The AKG 702 are great, very spacious midrange/highs, and offer quite substantial bass and slam. They are amazing but I find they aren't distinct enough on their own... generic awesome, if you will.

The 325i are great for what they were, being my first hi-fi can at the age of 16. They have a soft spot for they were my first entry into hi-fi. But, as rich, smooth, and lively as they are, they are a dumb can. Dumb in the sense that they have no idea about what is actually going on in a song, just pleasant.

Each can offers a nice taste, but I crave for something to truly better the MDR-SA5000, not just be a nice distraction, only enjoying the Sony's more.

I find all these headphones superfluous, but I can't seem to sell them, as I am not truly happy with only one. If there is one can anyone could think of let me know. I am guessing this will lead into Stax, which I cannot afford, but who knows!

Any feedback, advice, or opinions would be welcome.

I do not have any tube equipment.

Thanks
DT48e. Has all your requirements minus the larger sound stage.. The SA5000 was my favorite headphone too.. & was my reference.. Sold them when I got my DT48...
post #5 of 274
Quote:
Originally Posted by kool bubba ice View Post
DT48e. Has all your requirements minus the larger sound stage.. The SA5000 was my favorite headphone too.. & was my reference.. Sold them when I got my DT48...
How does the DT48 compare to the DT880 for music listening?
post #6 of 274
Some describe the CD3000 as a similar headphone to the SA5000 but much better, you might want to check it out. Some like it while others don't. All I can tell is that the detail level is high, and the soundstage is big. But it has been discontinued so it is not something that is easy to get.
post #7 of 274
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinesekiwi View Post
This smells heavily of a Beyerdynamic DT880. Very detailed yet musical + all rounders, particularly the DT880/600 ohm.
Scales very well as well. However, I dunno how well the MKV will drive the DT880 600 ohm so a 250 ohm one should be good to be safe. I recommedn if can find a 2003 edition of the DT880, to get that but the '05 250ohm DT880 (non pro) will do great as well. I had this dilemma too back then of choosing between the DT880 and SA5000 and chose the DT880 because I wanted musicality.
Really? Beyers have always been a brand I am skeptical to try. They seem to have drastically varying reviews, more so than other cans from what I have seen... but if you say they are a SA5000 but a bit more musical... well that is high praise indeed!

I am confused, are the DT 880 better than the DT 990?

Thanks
post #8 of 274
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kool bubba ice View Post
DT48e. Has all your requirements minus the larger sound stage.. The SA5000 was my favorite headphone too.. & was my reference.. Sold them when I got my DT48...
I did some quick quick research, but I am guessing these are no longer being made?

Thanks
post #9 of 274
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the input so far guys!
post #10 of 274
>_< phones discussed here are all the phones I want to get

MDR-SA5000, MDR-CD3000, DT880/600, and DT48
post #11 of 274
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by nullstring View Post
>_< phones discussed here are all the phones I want to get

MDR-SA5000, MDR-CD3000, DT880/600, and DT48
Well, I haven't heard the other three cans, but the MDR-SA5000 is most definitely worth trying and, partly due to ignorance, gets my vote! In terms of sheer performance it trounces my other phones. It is a bit thin musically like i said in my other post.

They are also very easy to drive and look stunning. They come with a very stylish stand too.

Search ebay or audiogon, bound to be a decent price. I got mine for 400 USD which after owning them, is more than fair. I could have paid full retail and still have been a very happy camper.

Good luck
post #12 of 274
Quote:
Originally Posted by sokolov91 View Post
I did some quick quick research, but I am guessing these are no longer being made?

Thanks
Sure they are. Look here:

Beyerdynamic | DT48E - Stereo Headphones - 25 Ohms | 404306
post #13 of 274
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by clarinetman View Post
Thanks for the link!

I wasn't able to find them on eBay at all. Hopefully this place ships to Canada... Is a design from 1938 really that good? Kinda threw me off because this is a near ancient phone (newer version obviously)! But I guess this isn't really an issue if the SQ is there. I'll have to read some reviews.
post #14 of 274
Quote:
Originally Posted by sokolov91 View Post
Thanks for the link!

I wasn't able to find them on eBay at all. Hopefully this place ships to Canada... Is a design from 1938 really that good? Kinda threw me off because this is a near ancient phone (newer version obviously)! But I guess this isn't really an issue if the SQ is there. I'll have to read some reviews.
The reviews will leave you more confused then ever.. You will hear they are the worst headphone ever made, to, they are amazing.. Only you can decide.. But they better the SA5000 in many of it's strength's so I recomend them. I will list how the DT48 better the DT880 & Vise Versa. I will be basing my opinion on the 250 ohm version. I will make my list when I get home.
post #15 of 274
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kool bubba ice View Post
The reviews will leave you more confused then ever.. You will hear they are the worst headphone ever made, to, they are amazing.. Only you can decide.. But they better the SA5000 in many of it's strength's so I recomend them. I will list how the DT48 better the DT880 & Vise Versa. I will be basing my opinion on the 250 ohm version. I will make my list when I get home.
That would be very much appreciated! I look forward to it!
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