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post #23461 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by eucariote View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coleb View Post

Alright well I'm ready to take the dive and buy some new headphones.  But I can't do it without the help from you guys!  I have been doing some research around Head-Fi and found that for my price range, the Sennheiser HD650's, Hifiman HE-400's and Grado SR325is' seem to be the best available.  So my first question is what are your takes on these cans?

 

  • I currently have a pair of Ultrasone HFI-780's and Etymotic HF5's which I use with a Fiio E11 amp
  • I listen to a pretty wide range of music, but it mainly comes down to rock and alternative with occasonal electronic (but I can use the Ultrasone's for electronic music)
  • I play the bass guitar, so having a headphone that I can fully experience the bass in other songs is very important to me, but I do not want it to be too over powering that it takes away from the music
  • I mainly listen to music off of my iPhone 4S

 

I will also be planning on buying an amp and possibly a DAC, which leads me to my second and third questions as well.

 

So I am thinking that I will need a portable amp, so based on your recommendation for the pair of headphones, what portable amp should I get in the $300 price range?  I've read that the HD650's require a pretty good amp, so will that price range be able to showcase their sound?

 

And lastly because I use my iPhone as my main player, should I invest in a DAC that is compatible with the iPhone?  If so, what do you recommend that is either an amp/DAC or just a DAC that works with the iPhone?

 

Thanks guys so much for the help!  And you have any other suggestions aside from what I mentioned, please do tell!

 

I'd scratch the 325s of your list (Grado woodies have much better bass and treble).  And if you're going to put $300 towards an amp I'd scratch the others off too and get HE500 and the cheapest amp that will work out the line out of your ipod.  The sound difference between different amps and dacs are tiny compared to headphones, and the HE500 sound noticeably better than any <$1000 headphone I've heard.  Then go steal your uncle's vintage amp and use that for home.


I agree that the Grado RS line has better bass, but the 325is, that sits on top of the Grado SR line, does quite well.  It's a full step up from the 225i in the bass department.

 

The HE-500 is a great can, but much more expensive than anything on the list.  Is there a portable amp/dac that will properly drive the HE-500?  If so what does it cost?  I don't know of any, but I am not a portable amp expert and don't know all that is out there.

post #23462 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by KG Jag View Post

 Is there a portable amp/dac that will properly drive the HE-500?  If so what does it cost?  I don't know of any, but I am not a portable amp expert and don't know all that is out there.

 

Something with a 9v battery (e.g. ibasso d4) would probably be up for the job.  But even without serious amplification the HE500 would mop the floor imo .  I much preferred the HE500 straight out an ipod touch to HD600 out full-sized headphone amps.

post #23463 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by KG Jag View Post

All the cans you list are very good albethey quite different, especially the Grado from the other two.  The Senn is not easy to drive and the 400 is a planar.


From your list, only the Grado will serve unamped from your iPhone.  Also check out it sibling the Alessandro MS-2, which is less bright.

 

For an old school dac/amp, look into the powerful old school (and on sale for $50 off) HeadRoom Total BitHead:

 

http://www.headphone.com/headphone-amps/headroom-total-bithead.php

 

If it intests you, this review will too:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u97XipWhLxc

 

Does the DAC work directly out of the iPhone, because I read somewhere that iPhone's require certain DAC's to bypass their internal DAC.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by eucariote View Post

 

I'd scratch the 325s of your list (Grado woodies have much better bass and treble).  And if you're going to put $300 towards an amp I'd scratch the others off too and get HE500 and the cheapest amp that will work out the line out of your ipod.  The sound difference between different amps and dacs are tiny compared to headphones, and the HE500 sound noticeably better than any <$1000 headphone I've heard.  Then go steal your uncle's vintage amp and use that for home.

 

Are there other Grado's in my price range ($400-$500) that are worth putting some research into?  Or should I just keep my eyes on the HE400 and HD650.  And as for the HE500, if I could find one for $600, I would take it, but I have only found them for $700, which is my budget for my total setup, including amp (and possibly DAC), so I am not sure if that is a feasible option.

post #23464 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coleb View Post

Are there other Grado's in my price range ($400-$500) that are worth putting some research into?  Or should I just keep my eyes on the HE400 and HD650.  And as for the HE500, if I could find one for $600, I would take it, but I have only found them for $700, which is my budget for my total setup, including amp (and possibly DAC), so I am not sure if that is a feasible option.

 

Grado HF-1 (SR225 drivers with wooden body) come very close to RS-1 and can be picked up for a song.  I haven't heard the HE400 so can't help you decide between them and HD650, perhaps someone else can chime in.

post #23465 of 29491

Looking for a good closed classical phone for ~$300 for my dad. I was thinking the Sony MDR-1R or the Mad Dogs(I would give him my FiiO E11((not sure if he's fine with carrying the amp around though)) ) Any other recommendations from other people?

post #23466 of 29491

hey, i just wanted to say thx to all the ppl recommending stuff, writing guides and discussing the headphones here. it helped me a lot.

 

i finally didnt buy the 750 since they had a big sibilance. i couldnt test them with an amp that they obviously required though (so that might have been the cause?).

 

at the end i bought the at mh50 since the only ones i could test and had enough power without an amp (and also were fairly cheap in comparison and i dont have to get an amp additionally). at powerful tracks i'm rly happy with them. at quieter ones I liked the akg k271 better but that one isnt portable at all so.. (and it also lacks in power without an amp).

 

i would rly have liked to try the akg k550, but couldnt find where to (or the place where they had them they had such a bulky theft-security that i couldnt get them to close over my ears ^^). they prolly would have been more comfortable than the mh50, even they arent as bad as described occasionally.

post #23467 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by Magicman74 View Post


Yes, and I don't believe in burn in myself. The Cal/Denon are the only cans I noticed " Burn in" with, Bio-Cell drivers use very thin membranes and they change...  Other cans, never notice.. More brain burn in...  the Cal's get better every day!!! 

Thanks for the tip. Sounds like I should try to do a bit of burn in then.

From my reading, it appears that "burning in" can be done by simply playing lots of music on the headphones, or you can use "pink noise". Do you have a preferred method, or do you just let them wear in normally?

I've also been doing some reading on recableing, and while I don't think I'll be attempting that anytime soon, it does sound like something that might be interesting to try in the future. It sounds like the CAL actually is one of the models that provides noticeable benefits.
post #23468 of 29491

Hey, I'm lookng for an open back headphones for listening to folk, acoustic classical and jazz for $100-$150. I thought the ATH-AD700 would do it for me, but I hear that the bass is absolutely anemic. Any suggestions? Portability is not a concern.

post #23469 of 29491

Hail head-fiers!

 

I've been a long time lurker and connoisseur of low-mid ranged closed supra aural headphones (think ~$300 or less).  I'm finally interested in taking the plunge into the open around-ear headphone arena, and I'm looking for a good starting point.  Here's what I'm looking for:

 

  • Budget - $400 or less
  • High detail, expansive soundstage
  • Warm sounding, well-presented bass/sub-bass.
  • Amplifier if necessary (haven't needed one yet).  They will be used exclusively on my desktop PC.

 

The Sennheiser HD650 sounds perfect for what I'm looking for, but unfortunately it's slightly out of my grasp price-wise, and from what I've been reading it sounds like I'd probably also need to spend money on an amp to power it.  My question is this:  Are there any open cans out there that sound similar to the HD650s that would fit the budget? Would it be recommended to give the HE-400s a shot?

 

A second, slightly-related question:  Does anyone know of any nice audio stores that I could go to to audition some of the higher-end headphones out there?  I live in the Milwaukee area and haven't had any luck here (but I could be missing something). I'd be willing to drive down to Chicago if necessary.

 

Thanks in advance!


Edited by Caessa - 1/16/13 at 10:03pm
post #23470 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caessa View Post

The Sennheiser HD650 sounds perfect for what I'm looking for, but unfortunately it's slightly out of my grasp price-wise, and from what I've been reading it sounds like I'd probably also need to spend money on an amp to power it.  My question is this:  Are there any open cans out there that sound similar to the HD650s that would fit the budget?

HD600. biggrin.gif  Used HD650 would also fit your budget.

post #23471 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coleb View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by KG Jag View Post

All the cans you list are very good albethey quite different, especially the Grado from the other two.  The Senn is not easy to drive and the 400 is a planar.


From your list, only the Grado will serve unamped from your iPhone.  Also check out it sibling the Alessandro MS-2, which is less bright.

 

For an old school dac/amp, look into the powerful old school (and on sale for $50 off) HeadRoom Total BitHead:

 

http://www.headphone.com/headphone-amps/headroom-total-bithead.php

 

If it intests you, this review will too:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u97XipWhLxc

 

Does the DAC work directly out of the iPhone, because I read somewhere that iPhone's require certain DAC's to bypass their internal DAC.

 

 

I'm not sure.  I have the amp only version, the very recently discontinued Total AirHead.  I connect to my iPhone with a Fiio iPhone cord.  However, I don't know how that will work with the internal DAC of the BitHead.

post #23472 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by eucariote View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by KG Jag View Post

 Is there a portable amp/dac that will properly drive the HE-500?  If so what does it cost?  I don't know of any, but I am not a portable amp expert and don't know all that is out there.

 

Something with a 9v battery (e.g. ibasso d4) would probably be up for the job.  But even without serious amplification the HE500 would mop the floor imo .  I much preferred the HE500 straight out an ipod touch to HD600 out full-sized headphone amps.


Can't say I agree that an underamped HE-500 beats the HD 600.  Out of my little desktop HiFiMan EF2A amp, the HE-500 sounded enemic.  Plugging in the HD 6x0, which were fully powered, produced my better results.

 

Perhaps more important--the very heavy, open and large HE-500 is one of the last cans I would want to use out and about.


Edited by KG Jag - 1/16/13 at 10:43pm
post #23473 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by eucariote View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coleb View Post

Are there other Grado's in my price range ($400-$500) that are worth putting some research into?  Or should I just keep my eyes on the HE400 and HD650.  And as for the HE500, if I could find one for $600, I would take it, but I have only found them for $700, which is my budget for my total setup, including amp (and possibly DAC), so I am not sure if that is a feasible option.

 

Grado HF-1 (SR225 drivers with wooden body) come very close to RS-1 and can be picked up for a song.  I haven't heard the HE400 so can't help you decide between them and HD650, perhaps someone else can chime in.


Is the HF-1 still available to buy new?  I thought that they were a less than 500 unit limited edition run.  Not sure what a used one goes for, but I'm guessing that it's a very expensive song for what was originally a $200 can.

post #23474 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfetan44 View Post

Looking for a good closed classical phone for ~$300 for my dad. I was thinking the Sony MDR-1R or the Mad Dogs(I would give him my FiiO E11((not sure if he's fine with carrying the amp around though)) ) Any other recommendations from other people?


Is this to be used unamped from something like an iPod?

post #23475 of 29491
Quote:
Originally Posted by zephyrre View Post

Hey, I'm lookng for an open back headphones for listening to folk, acoustic classical and jazz for $100-$150. I thought the ATH-AD700 would do it for me, but I hear that the bass is absolutely anemic. Any suggestions? Portability is not a concern.


The bass is weak, but it's not as important for the genres you enjoy.

 

The Senn HD 558 can be had within your budget from time to time.  The HD 518, which has more bass, but is not as good--especially for your music.  However, it is an alternative that falls within your budget.

 

If you want a very good semi-open can for less than $61, the AKG K 240 studio can be had through Amazon.

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