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Beyerdynamic 880 v 990 600(?) Ohm

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

Greetings, everyone.


So I've been reading around on these forums trying to answer my questions. I've mainly been successful. I'll be using these cans for mix downs at my own home (quite, and away from people), so I've concluded open cans will work best for a truthful, neutral sound that will ultimately translate well to virtually any system that isn't eq'd weird.


I'm still kind of between the 880s and the 990s, leaning a little toward the 990s because, best I can tell, they are a little flatter which is better for the original mixing. My question is, plugged into an E-Mu 1616m ( http://www.emu.com/products/product.asp?category=505&subcategory=491&product=15189 ), will the 600 Ohm versions be adequately powered, or should I just stick to the 250s?



post #2 of 19

NONONO. The 990s are colored for bass and treble emphasis. The 880s are the 'neutral' ones. If you want a more balanced sound, the 880s are the way to go. The 990s are for those that want a little more fun out of their sound.

post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 

Cool, thanks. I guess I had that backwards for some reason. What kind of amp is needed to power 600 Ohms? Is that worth my time and money?

post #4 of 19

The Fiio E9 is getting a lot of attention with good reason. It's powerful, affordable, and sleek. For $130, it's an absolute no brainer. Don't let the misguided ones tell you that amps aren't worth it until you hit some expensive numbers. Those who have had the chance to compare the E9 to various higher priced amps have been favoring the E9 more so than not.


If you already have a really good soundcard or DAC, don't look at the E7, but if you don't own either, I'd suggest the Fiio E7 (portable amp and dac that docks onto the E9 ) and E9 (desktop amp) combo. For $200 or so, it's a solid combo that will get you what you need for practically any conventional headphone.

post #5 of 19
Thread Starter 

Once again, thanks so much for the help, MLE. I'm reading some reviews that say 600 vs 250 isn't really noticeable. What is your input on that? And talking about the premium versions of both (the 600 Ohm versions), you still say 880 is the way to go?

post #6 of 19

People say the difference is small. The 600 ohm is supposed to be a little smoother and I guess a tad more accurate. I actually obtained some 250 ohm 2005 version DT880s recabled with Cardas cable at a meet, but I actually haven't been able to listen to it yet because I have nowhere to plug it into because it is balanced. There is a DAC that has balanced outs in the mail, so I will see shortly. I will keep an eye on this thread, as I have the same headphone. BTW, although i don;t know how the DT880s sound yet, i have just put them on my head, and they just kind of float there with those cushy velour earpads and soft headband covering. They are a great choice for mixing because I could never see them getting uncomfortable.

post #7 of 19

Hey I see that you using that them for mixing. I use DT990 600ohm with my Mbox. It drives it alright I guess. I do swap around with my other headphones and speakers just for reference sake.


When I was learning how to mix. I picked up that, no matter what you use, if you can remember the sound signature of it with other songs you often listen to. Just mix it to the similiar degree of sound and you won't go too wrong.


Its good to use headphones and monitors together for mixing.

post #8 of 19
Thread Starter 

I'd kind of like to hear Skylabs opinion on the 880 vs 990 for mix down purposes. He seems to be a big Beyer advocate. I've definitely decided on just spending the extra $130 and amping 600 Ohms, though. Even if it just provides a slightly more accurate sound, imo it will be worth it for mixing.


I think a lot of the bad reviews for the 880s are coming from people who don't mix, they just leisure-listen so they don't like that the 880s really tell the truth about other mixes (meaning some of the artists they listen to mixed their music poorly and the 880s are just showing it instead of coloring it up; I don't think it's actually the 880s that are sounding bad, it's the music). Even though the increased bass of the 990s sounds like a lot of fun and is very tempting, I think I need to go neutral here.


Also, anyone know what rewiring them and switching to leather pads will do for the sound? Is the research, risk, time, and money worth it?


Paging Skylab. 

Edited by AudioAssassyn - 12/4/10 at 9:55am
post #9 of 19

For most purposes, I think the 880s will be a better headphone for the majority of the headphonaholics. I myself would love to own them again, but I don't have any real reason to. I also think the E9 would be a better match for the 880s more than the 990s simply based off how aggressive the treble on the 990s are. The E9 won't lessen it. It would turn off the people who prefer a smoother/rolled off high end. I don't remember exactly how the treble of the 880s were compared to the 990s, but I believe it was less piercing.


I like aggressive treble though. ^_^

Edited by Mad Lust Envy - 12/4/10 at 10:05am
post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 

What happened to yours? Why do you have no reason to replace them? In your sig it looks like you kept the 990s though? lol sorry, questions questions questions. I swear I'm not 3.

post #11 of 19

Oh no, the 990s are mine, and they're staying that way. I was referring to the 880s which I traded for some K701s (which I recently sold) a while back. The 990s are my fave headphone, period. I'm just saying, the 880's balanced sound has it's own benefits too.


What I meant about the E9 being slightly better for the 880s than the 990s, is because of the treble of the 990s which some wouldn't like unless it was toned down. The E9 doesn't remove anything from headphones.

Edited by Mad Lust Envy - 12/4/10 at 10:19am
post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 

Of course, we all have our favorite can, but is there any reason in particular that you kept your 990s over the 880s? The E9 is set in stone right now, so no more discussion on that one.

post #13 of 19

Yeah, listen to MLE. DT880 more neutral than DT990 which is more 'U' curved... excentuated bass and trebble.

DT880 250 Ohm vs. 600 Ohm, not a huge difference, but enough to make me keep the 600 Ohm. It improves on the bass extension and impact slightly and simultaneously reduces the strident highs.

Amping a must.

post #14 of 19

like I said before, if you know your cans! you know how to do mix with them. Only difference is that if you can hear the details.

post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 

Hey guys, I decided to go ahead and splurge and get both cans. Out of the box (I still don't have the amp hooked up, and they are not burned in at all, so keep that in mind) the 990s are definitely slightly more U-shaped than the 880s. Both are already revealing bad mixes from bands I once thought were decently mixed. I can't wait to get them fully amped and burned in to see their full potential. I got some lambskin pads from JMoneyAudio for the 880s (or heck, 990s if you guys can convince me they would do better on them), and am planning to get the 880s recabled by Zynsonix (run by Bryan, a member of this board). In your opinions, is recabling worth it, and do you agree I'd be better off recabling/repadding the 880s since that's what I'll be mixing with and have on my head most often? Is this a moot point because both cans are already killer? Thanks again guys, you've all been a great help.

Edited by AudioAssassyn - 12/11/10 at 3:58pm
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