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Hello Head-Fi! Phiaton offers you free gear! - Page 4  

post #46 of 177
What I think is the most important aspect of Headphones is sound quality. Why else do you get headphones, speakers, anything that produces sound? After sound quality a close second comes comfort followed by price, build quality, design, and size. I know it is weird to have comfort above aspects like price and quality, but when you are listening with headphones for a long period of time that becomes a huge factor.

Regarding what I specifically like in sounds quality is clarity. I like an overall balanced sound with the ability to distinguish each instrument from each other including vocals. I will give up bass in order to have clear highs. I cannot stand a muddied sound. I have been a big fan of open cans ever since I heard my first grado's (SR80's). It just seems that with most closed cans that I listened to the stage is so small and up front. Whereas with open cans the stage is more open.

Here is a little anecdote of why comfort though not most important is still quite important. After quite a bit of research I decided to get a pair of Senn HD580's. At the time I got a heck of a good price on them and were supposed to be a good step up from SR80's. I even replaced the cables on the cans because it supposedly made a big difference. After a period of burning them in they sounded great. Now the sound was different then my grados the stage seemed more open less in your face. It took a while to get used to, but they did sound awesome and I wanted to love them. Although after a while they were a pain to wear. So many people said they were very comfortable, but for me they were not and alas they sit in a box under my bed. So needless to say even though sound quality is my number 1 criteria if the headphones hurt they will just end up collecting dust.

Now when it comes to price I am constantly on the quest of finding that sweet spot of quality vs price, but I never compromise on the sound quality. I am far from an audiophile and hate to pay audiophile prices for a negligible gain in quality(that is unless you have top tier audio equipment), but I know what I like and try to research as much as I can on the subject to make as informed a decision as I can when buying headphones. There are just too many choices out there to choose from and going off of the subjective opinions of others is often times quite hard. I normally try to find reviews from people who like similar headphones as mine before I take the plunge. Because I hate wasting 50,100, 200's on anything and not use it or have to return it.

Build Quality although down on the list is still important. I hate to get a nice pair of cans and have them fall apart just from overuse not abuse. I take great care of everything I own so that is why I am not worried about them breaking due to abuse. If I am spending $200 on anything I am going to take care of it. Majority of the time listening to headphones is in bed or on my computer so I am not worried about dropping them or having them get destroyed in a bag. If a can falls apart just from old age then it is not worth anything and the brand as a whole will take a drop on future purchases and recommendations.

Design and Size are least important to me because those really qualities don't add anything to overall sound quality of the headphones at least to a certain extent. The size can make a difference due to bigger better drivers, but overall wearing small or large cans does not bother me. Since I listen to them primarily at home if they look cool or blah doesn't really make much of a difference either. I listen primarily to grados, which while having its own unique style, are far from stylish. What they lack in style they more than make up in sound quality and comfort. I can listen to them for hours on end without ever knowing they are there.

I think that pretty much sums up what is important to me with regards to purchasing headphones. Maybe if I am lucky I will be able to add a pair of Phiaton's to my collection as well.
post #47 of 177
Quoted from my favourite movie (NOT the crappier remake):

"Sweet highs, accurate mids and POWERFUL bass. One word, transparent."

post #48 of 177
Just to cash in on the competition here, lol

What I'd like from my earphones, or headphones, are sounds that doesn't make you scream out in horror when you have a headache, like a muddy and drownsy bass, a thick mids with weak and flimsy highs. I always get under the weather and headaches are pretty much a part of my weekly schedule (extremely weak and fragile). So what I really like in those conditions/right now is a 20KHz frequency noise.

Anyhow's something else that'd be nice would be great isolation with a more pronounced dynamic, so that you'd hear a pin drop and replay it many times over even when you're on the train or underground. Just so that you can laugh at other passengers as they'd have to deal with the noise when you're enjoying the smallest, quietest of details and the most tense drumming, all on the same volume bar.

What I'd also like in a headphone/earphone is a tight, strong but not overpowering bass, enough to get your head nodding, but not so much that it steals the spotlight. On top of that, would be a clear, instrumentally seperated mid, with a strong and thick high, as well as an impactful mid-low drum. (To be honest, I have no idea how this would sound). A wide variety of customisation and accessories is welcomed. Furethermore, a decent warranty and a good build quality would also be wonderful

The price is also important, sure, you can also "go for it" and get the best of the best. But when you're not too into music or don't want to dedicate all your disposible income on it, or maybe when you're still a student, a strong value with not the best, but still great sound will be a more viable option.
post #49 of 177
anything that will get my feet moving
post #50 of 177
Headphones: detailed sound with great imaging, neutral frequency except forward mids (love the mids - quite enjoy me some Grado and Stax, also bloated bass kills it for me everytime...), and comfort. To me those are the main desired traits in a headphone.
post #51 of 177

WHO NEEDS AN IPAD?

What do I want for Christmas (or sooner)? Not an iPad, but a pair of Phiatons. However wishful thinking that might be, what I like in a set of headphones is soundstage. I want to hear that guitar string plucked, the clarity of a paradiddle, the breathe of Rebecca Pidgeon singing Spanish Harlem. Can your headphones do that? If they can, send them to me next day FedEx. If they can't, good riddance.
post #52 of 177
well I'm not even gonna try =3 but good luck to everyone else.
post #53 of 177
When viewing headphones there are a two elements that help decide which are right for me: the design and sound quality. Things like physical appearance and brand effect should not hinder a decision when buying headphones.

the design. comfort and durability are significant. regardless of how good a pair of headphones sound, no one wants to listen to a pair of headphones that chafe the ears, stop blood stream, are too heavy, or slip easily; in other words, uncomfortable. Also, regardless of how nice a pair of headphones are, one can't be overconcerned with the fragility. Listeners must feel comfortable wearing the headphones in a variety of situations; heaphones that are fragile distract from listening experience.

And sound quality. No fuzziness or buzzes you get from indecent headphones. Headphones must be able to accurately play the sound that is fed to it; high and low notes should be clear but not overwhelming, mid tones pleasing to hear. It is unreasonable to expect sound to stay complete when played at extremely high volumes, but one expects a reasonable amount of resistance to distortion at high volumes.

Someone else mentioned this, but the best headphones IMO are the ones that allow you to enjoy your music. No one who truly listens to music pays particular attention to how clear a certain frequency might sound; its how the music of all ranges all blends together to achieve a sense of musical bliss.
post #54 of 177
the sound is all that matters then maybe comfort

real headache to sort through the ones that do and more often the ones that don't.I like the bass to be prominant and to be able to feel it besides hearing it.High quality speakers and moniters produce bass vibrations.And i feel the bass in a full size headphone should also produce some vibration,to a point.Proper bass in a headphone to me,should be able to isolate the kick drum so you can not only hear but feel some vibration from the impact.Or else it sounds flat and neutral.Which a lot of "audiophiles" prefer.Abundant and deep extention is seldom and hard to find for some reason."Proper bass" should have that deep extension that is heard in a subwoofer.
post #55 of 177
Comfort is very important to me. When I get down to listening, I'm usually listening for a while. For portable headphones, especially IEMs, being easy to put on is a very big plus. I hate fiddling around with getting things to fit when I'm headed out the door in the morning or walking between classes.

Durability is also very important. I don't want to spend a large sum of money on something that won't last more than a few weeks or months of normal, careful use.
On a similar note, style is important to me too. I'm not fond of spending large amounts of money on ugly things, regardless of how great they are in other areas. A moderate, understated design is often a good way to go in my opinion.

And of course, how could I leave out sound? I prefer a darker sound signature, one that favors the mids and bass more. I love deep bass and I love bass punch, it helps me get into the music when I can feel it. Smooth, laid back mids are my preference, as opposed to forward mids. Obviously there are others who prefer a brighter, more forward presentation though.
Soundstage isn't as important to me as positioning. Sure, having both be good would be excellent, but I would take instrument positioning anyday. When it comes to soundstage though, depth is very important. I've noticed some headphones with "good" soundstage are just very wide, without much actual depth.
You can't please everyone with one set of cans, so finding a middle ground or an "average" preference would be the way to go, I suppose.


Good luck Phiaton crew! There are lots of great opinions posted in this thread, and I hope to see (more) great products coming from you in the future!
post #56 of 177
For me, a combo of fit and sound quality. I need comfort for wearing them for long periods of time. I also like nice clear mids and highs. A little bass is ok, but balanced, not too punchy.
post #57 of 177
I still dont understand these terms low mids and highs,These my headphone had me hearing things I had never heard before. Until these headphones I used to think it was silly to buy higher costing headphones for primary Gaming.

After Using these headphones after the last headphones I had, I cant look at 5.1 headphones no more. These put me as close to the game I can get.
post #58 of 177
I believe that Headphones need to rock your world while getting out of the way of the music. The ideal pair should ideally transport the listener's mind to another place, out of time, and away from the more pedestrian redundancies of day-to-day life. That to me is the true definition of the audiophile approach to entertainment; pure escapism that morphs into a musical nirvana that one can ascend to, but only if one upgrades ones' gear enough.
post #59 of 177
There comes a time in every audiophiles life when the bonds of mediocre quality and sub par audio must be broken. It is on that day when you seek a more meaningful experience, a more enjoyable and self indulgent, blissful audio journey. The road may be long and arduous, filled with many evils and bad purchases that burn a hole in your wallet ultimately causing you to seek therapy, taking many years to fully get over....

In my humbled experiences, audio quality is equally as important as high definition video. Audio quality has always been neglected by the majority of the public, for what reasons I am unsure. Valiant attempts to sway the priorities of family and friends have consistently failed throughout the years. Common are the phrases and statements:

"I can't hear the difference between this cheap set and this expensive one you just purchased."

"I'm just fine with cheap headphones."

BUT NO MORE! I cover my ears and chant " La La La La!!! I CAN'T HEAR YOU!" when such things are said to me. A great set of headphones must include the following:

-A build quality that is durable yet flexable, with just the right amount of clamping force
-Fully over the ear circumaurial pads, low profile meaning the cans are small & full sized)
-A cord that detaches with a standard size plug and fit, easily replaced if damaged. Also a cord length that makes sense for the type of headphone it is used on. A longer coiled cord may be a good idea for monitors, a shorter cord no more than 4ft for portable use
-The absence of Pleather, as it gets hot quickly.
-A large frequency response of at least 8-27 allowing for a wide spectrum of sound.
-Sex appeal. They've got to look good and sound good. This is rare.
-A forward sound with a great soundstage. This is also rare, Nobody wants their headphones to sound distant, as if someone were broadcasting music through a megaphone down the street from your location. You want the music close to you, caressing you, whispering into your ear " I will never leave you, stay with me forever."

You wouldn't want your pets to look at you with this face when you listen to your headphones, would you?

post #60 of 177
I value sound quality the most. I prefer an accurate bass instead of a booming one. The most important aspect of sound for me is detailed rendering of midtones. I want a guitar to sound like a guitar and so on.

I prefer to split rest of my preferences based on usage.

In regular desktop use at home I am willing to sacrifice portability, appearance and comfort in that particular order. I don't care if I happen to look a bit dorky at home as long as it sounds good.

For public usage (ie. jogging, work) I prefer lighter, more portable and better looking alternative. In this case I am willing to compromise sound quality a bit in order to have these values.

I am willing to spend more on quality cans for home usage while I tend to skimp a bit on budget for portable ones. In any case it's important to have price-quality ratio match at some level. While estimating this I tend to take warranty and build quality (based on user reports) in count.
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