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Hello Head-Fi! Phiaton offers you free gear! - Page 2  

post #16 of 177
Thread Starter 
Wow, you guys are fast! These replies have been awesome so far. Thank you all for participating.


~Phiaton Team
post #17 of 177
The things that matter most to me when it comes to head/earphones in general:

- Fit and comfort: Who really wants to wear a pair of uncomfortable cans for very long? In order to get a good listening session in, they should be comfortable and fit well. If you're constantly fiddling with them, you won't enjoy the listening experience.

- Sound Quality. OK, everyone will say this. I look for good, balanced, detailed sound. "boomy," "tinny," "muddy" are all bad words. Good earphones/headphones should be used to listen to the music, you should forget they are there. They shouldn't be the limiting factor in being able to hear all of the notes and nuances in the music.

post #18 of 177
I feel that most important thing in headphones is that they makes the music I listen involving and enjoyable. It is extremely difficult to say what it is that makes a pair of cans able to do that, because people's hearing differs between individuals so much.

That said, it is clear that single model can not satisfy everybody. Personally I have just explored several brands and when the particular pair cans just worked for me, I stuck to them.
post #19 of 177
1) comfort
2) musical taste
3) source gear
4) I think there is more interaction with the ear pinna using circumaural headphones than is given credit for. This does not matter to in ears, and minimally to on ear headphones.
post #20 of 177
The most important thing for me with regards to headphones is how well they disappear. Specifically, I want my headphones to be no where near the forefront of my mind, as they should simply be a conduit for my source material. It's that magical combination of comfort, stage, dynamics, detail, and transparency that I crave the most when searching for new headphones. It's like running with a great pair of shoes... you pay no attention to the shoe itself, and are allowed to simply be one with the road and singularly "enjoy the run" in all its glory.
post #21 of 177
I'm always looking for a headphone that reproduces music truthfully and expressively. If it cannot involve me in the music, it's not worth listening to. That is to say, it must have a well-balanced frequency range. Technically speaking, it cannot be harsh on top, and bass must be controlled, never boomy. My favorite part of hi-fi listening is the amazing details that can be heard, so it is important that one component of the sound not overpower the soundscape. It is a very nice thing to have an amazing soundstage, but when push comes to shove, I listen to headphones for the intimacy of the experience. If I want pinpoint accuracy, speakers will always be king, but I've never heard a stereo set-up that puts me so close to the musician as headphones. They sing into my ears, they pluck the strings on my eardrums, I hear every breath. It can be a very cathartic experience.

A perfect headphone would scale well with other components, as one upgrades, the aural pleasure is increased. If it complements the strengths of your components upstream, it's a beautiful thing. Unfortunately, a headphone that resolves incredible detail also exposes the flaws of the preceding parts of the setup. That is one of the reasons why this hobby is not for the faint of heart, one must be prepared to get an entire ensemble together.

Taking form factor into account is also important. Generally speaking, an ugly headphone will not sell (I'm looking at you, K1000s...), so a great product should be good-looking, especially if it is a portable pair of headphones. Size and shape is important for non-portable cans as well as portables. I do a lot of listening laying in bed, so it can be a problem if the ear-cups are too large, as they are uncomfortable against the pillow. I'd imagine that a fair number of other people listen in bed, too, so it is an important thing to consider. Weight and compression is another concern, I have a closed pair that is very heavy and compresses very hard, and they are very uncomfortable to wear for an extended period of time. That has really affected how much I listen to them, even though I like the sound, I can't listen for very long.

That said, there does not exist a headphone that is all things for all people. In this community, people need to recognize that what works for some folks won't necessarily please them. It depends on the music you listen to, what you value in sound reproduction, even your mood at the time of listening. When that's all said and done, you can just sit back and enjoy the music.
post #22 of 177
The most important factor in a perfect headphone or earphone is accurate recording reproduction no matter how I listen. From classical, to heavy metal and everything in between, I want to hear the music exactly as the artist intended it to be.

I don't want headphones with booming bass, or treble or a fancy built in sound enhancer. I don't want earphones that are factory tweaked to compensate for, well, anything... I want to hear the music as close to the original recording as possible, every time - for better or worse. If at some point I want to alter what I am hearing to suit my own personal taste, the baseline of a pure headphone or earphone gives me the most freedom to do so and for that reason, caters to the widest demographic possible.

Of course build quality is important, no one wants to drop their hard earned cash on something that wont last.

Comfort is Certainly a must. If headphones or earphones sound great but i cant stand to wear them they don't stand a chance.

Style - well, that's a bonus in my book. I will choose function over form if it means a better listening experience, but hey, who doesn't want a nice looking set of phones?

Bottom line - Give me pure sound, quality and comfort, with a dash of style, and I'll buy it. Oh yeah, and the more affordable, the better!

post #23 of 177
Welcome to Head-Fi!

The first thing I desire and value in a headphone is it's naturalness. Is the tone of a given instrument convincing me that I'm listening to an instrument rather than merely a reproduction? Is the sense of space appropriate to the recording? If I'm watching a concert DVD with headphones it should sound like the nuances of a live performance are there. If I'm listening to a string quartet in a studio it should convey the intimacy.

The second thing I desire is a build quality that commensurates with price. Does the headphone feel like it is worth the asking price? The materials should be reflective of the price of the headphone, so long as they do not hinder it's sound. The ergonomics of it's design should lend to a comfortable feel. I want the impression that the money I have invested has provided me with a product of good durability and solid engineering.

(P.S. this is why the RS1i's in my signature have departed and Edition 8's are joining me soon.)
post #24 of 177
I look for comfort first. If the distraction of discomfort is there in any way it really kills the joy of listening to music. After that, clarity...detail, soundstage, linearity with no glaring peaks or dips that might cause fatigue or boredom. Above all, does it sound actual voices and instruments, rather than something amplified at my ears. I suppose what that actually amounts to is different for everyone.
post #25 of 177
I try to look at everything in my life holistically, including headphones. Aesthetics, ergonomics, and acoustics are all considered and weighed emotionally and rationally to get an overall feel for a pair of headphones. I cannot define specifically what appeals or will appeal since many different headphones have appealed to me for different reasons.

Another thing I will add is that I enjoy my listening experience more when I have done some modding or cable work to the headphones. Putting blood, sweat, and tears into my headphones gives me a greater sense of attachment and naturally enhances my mood each time I listen.
post #26 of 177
Comfort is the most important factor for me. No matter how good a headphone sounds, if it is not comfortable for the user, its really hard for them to concentrate and enjoy the music. In SQ wise, I prefer headphones/ earphones with clean and accurate presentation. Soundstage is also a important thing. Constricted soundstage makes me tired.
post #27 of 177
Is invisible too (esoteric) much to ask for?
post #28 of 177
The 2 most important things to me are SQ and durability, since i'm generally not too careful w/ my gear....

I have found this combination in the PS200 which shows me all the details i want to hear in the music while having a pretty linear frequency response. Some consider the bass to be light, but you can always add a little bass boost, & i like how deep it reaches.

The only possible thing i could complain about is the soundstage, which could be a bit wider to my taste, but generally i'm very satisfied w/ its SQ.

Durability-wise, strain-reliefs are a must to me... That's the reason i really like the plug.
The only problem i've had w/ them is that due to the fact that i'd been storing them into their case, the cable is bent now, & i'm scared that cable breakage could occur.
post #29 of 177
post #30 of 177
Good sound quality even in low volume. That's important.
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