Hey guys, I feel like this pair of cans gets a lot of attention when seasoned audiophiles are asked for an affordable, viable alternative to the infamous Monster Beatsbydre cans- and it's one of the the four cans I've seen the most as Monster alternatives (DT770's, M50, SRH750- for a lower price range anyways). Consequently, they seem like gateway phones for bassheads entering audiophile territory. Therefore, I thought I'd start this thread, and see how far it would go. I just scored a pair, and I absolutely love them.
I'm very new to this, but here's what I think so far.
BACKGROUND: I am a n00b. The journey to my 580's started with a particular dislike for the Beats hype (I actually DO think they're nifty cans, just not at their price point). In high school, I was a first chair trumpet. I also played guitar and made beats. Anyways-
AESTHETICS: They're no Edition-series pair, but they're definitely pretty. I'm really feeling the chrome/black scheme. Shiny but classy.
BUILD: They're plastic and pleather. No Ultrasone Edition-series materials here. To their credit, it is very durable feeling hard plastic. I haven't exactly handled high end phones, but they feel very solid. Nevertheless.. they ARE plastic and pleather.
COMFORT: These things have CLAMP. I wouldn't quite say "skull crushing," but there's a brutal amount of force initially. However, after a couple days, I either acclimated to them or they loosened; I'm guessing both. As my experience with higher end phones is limited, the Monster Beats (the circumaural ones) and the Bose QC15's are the only comparisons from which I can draw. Quite frankly, I don't think these are as comfortable as the aforementioned two. However, the only copies of the Monster and Bose pairs that I've tried are the worn ones in Apple stores (and my best friend's Monster Solo's), and I DO expect the HFI's to break in and feel more comfortable with time.
ISOLATION: They isolate pretty well. At median volumes, I hear nothing but the loudest outside sounds, and at my normal levels, I hear nothing outside of my cans
Again, these are my first pair of really good headphones, but I cannot get over how amazing they sound- and I've only heard them with little to no amplification so far =]. I'm not quite sure how the S-Logic "surround" is supposed to sound, but with gaming their positioning has been good to me so far (I'm not really an FPS gamer, but I do play shooter RPG's). I'm still trying to understand terms like "PRaT" or "soundstage," but, as a beatmaker, guitarist, ex-marching band trumpeter, here's what I do know.
LOWS: They have incredible lows. Ridiculously powerful bass. Ridiculously powerful bass. Ridicul- anyways.. However, I don't feel like the bass encroaches on other frequencies. On Messy Marv's "Get on my Hype," more than enough bass shows up to make a basshead salivate. However, the rappers' lines come in clear, as do the synth work, claps, and hats. Although they're gifted in the lower frequencies, the 580's don't seem to be particularly bass heavy unless the song's mix calls for it. For example, these cans REALLY shine with the acoustic work of Dashboard Confessional, HE IS WE, Secondhand Serenade, and stuff along those lines. However, as they are recommended for bass, they do carry an incredible amount. I listen to hip-hop, R&B, dustup, rap, and pop- but where they really carry an image of depth is orchestral stuff for me. Stringed bass, cello, baritones, trombones, and the like have so much OMPH. It's amazing =]
MIDS: I'm not sure how I'd describe mids, but I just feel like the sound out of these cans feels rich and full- not just the lows. Specifically, I would say that lot of the baritone, French horn, and strings work from the orchestral work of Hans Zimmer, James Dooley, and Steve Jablonsky sound really full and clear.
HIGHS: I don't know if this relates, but sometimes sibilance shows up. I think they handle highs well. Details at higher frequencies are clearly rendered, but not in a harsh manner.
CLARITY: I feel like some of the hate the Monster's get is for not rendering the lowest lows well. That is not an issue here. As aforementioned, the bass runs very low and powerfully so. However, the deepest frequencies do not muddy the lower mids. An incredible amount of detail is present. Things that I've never heard before show up. IZ breathing in the ukelele intro in Somewhere Over the Rainbow. Previously unheard audio garnishes in certain tracks- a triangle here or a synth sound there. Even in bass heavy dubstep and hip hop, hi hats and snares come in loud and clear.
CONCLUSION: I'm in love, and if you're a bashed that wants something better than the hyped Monster cans for about half the price (of the big ones), you can be too =]