I wrote way too much detail on my experience with all headphones, dacs, and amps. If you're turned off by reading all that which I have to assume most people are (I know I would be), then skip ahead to the next lines.
Over the last number of months I've been assembling myself a rig:
- DT880 250 ohm
- DT990 250 ohm
- AKG K701
They all get amped by my Meier Corda Headfive (With crossfeed. I like the crossfeed!).
For sources I have the LO of my Zen Vision: M and a HeadRoom Micro DAC. I listen to rock, with no files below 192kbps. I've abx'd with foobar and I haven't been able to detect a difference between a 192 and FLAC.
I found my k701 just didnt have the impact of bass or drums that I wanted. They were detailed but balanced wrong for my music.
I then switched over to the DT990. I found the DT990 easily detailed enough, drums were given impact and I had tons of bass. Too much bass. The bass got too boomy on most rock tracks, the mids too recessed, and trebles too pronounced. The biggest problem was the boomy bass.
I then switched over to the DT880. I'm mostly happy with them. They're a little harsh on some highs which I may try equalizing out ala the http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/413900/how-to-equalize-your-headphones-a-tutorial thread. My other grief with them is that they sometimes feel to lack a bit of sub-bass bass texture. The DT990 can far better handle the sub bass, but their mid bass is too boomy for them to work for me. I should say that I'm mostly happy with the drum impact of the DT880 (depends on the recordings unfortunately, but thats just the nature of things).
My most noticeable example of the sub bass that sounds castrated on the DT880 is from Gorrilaz's Clint Eastwood. During the fills (first one at 0:40) they repeat this one super deep bass note three times. The DT880 can play the note, but it misses the texture and rumble that the DT990 manages to produce.
I'm a sucker for textures and impact, but not without detail and balance
I should say that these three headphones really are amazing and far better than any other headphones I've owned and easily worth their price, but I'm nitpicking because I can. I should also note that I can't hear a difference in quality between my ZV:M and my Micro DAC, but I keep the Micro DAC because the headphone-output of my laptop is pure rubbish.
I really wish there was a general rig forum on Head-Fi to ask something as general as I am, but there isn't so I'm here. So my question is... Where do I go from here? I doubt I need a DAC upgrade, it's possible an amp switch can help me, but I think I'm mostly asking for a recommendation of where to go after my 250ohm DT880. I don't want to sacrifice the incredible detail and quality of my DT880, but I need smoother highs and better textured and deeper, but not boomier, bass.
Recommend me what you can,
Thanks Head-Fi... and my wallet is already gone.