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place to demo headphones in Washington DC

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

Hello,

 

I'm looking at buying some full-sized headphones. I have had several pairs that I have fit issues with (Koss UR-55 and M30) and don't want to have to keep going through the return process. I would like to demo some full-sized headphones before I buy them and was wondering if there was a store or dealer in Washington DC that let customers demo headphones.

 

I've been to Best Buy but they only have skull candys and Bose to demo.

post #2 of 28

I think there are a couple in NOVA but not sure about in D.C. I am not familiar with those places though, I was just reading about them I think in the regional section. Only place I know of is in Winchester, VA, and that is about 1.5hrs from D.C.

 

Also check out this thread...

 

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/517824/interest-check-maryland-jersey-pennsylvania-virginia-central-east-coast-meetup

post #3 of 28

Where in NOVA? I'm in Herndon and looking to demo cans in the 200-300 price range.

post #4 of 28

There is a shop in Falls Church (AV shop, forget the name) and one in Fairfax (The Gifted Listener) that do Grado. Guitar Center has some mid level AKG, Sennheiser, Sony,Shure and Ultrasone phones.

post #5 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by drewfus420 View Post

There is a shop in Falls Church (AV shop, forget the name) and one in Fairfax (The Gifted Listener) that do Grado. Guitar Center has some mid level AKG, Sennheiser, Sony,Shure and Ultrasone phones.



I think Falls Church is Lederer's Sound, but I've never been inside

post #6 of 28


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ArmAndHammer View Post

I think there are a couple in NOVA but not sure about in D.C. I am not familiar with those places though, I was just reading about them I think in the regional section. Only place I know of is in Winchester, VA, and that is about 1.5hrs from D.C.

 

Also check out this thread...

 

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/517824/interest-check-maryland-jersey-pennsylvania-virginia-central-east-coast-meetup


 

I think you're referring to ear-head.com

 

I just bought an AKG k701 there the other day. Frank Diaz was very, very helpful. He's got a nice listening room and he patiently let me try several pairs of headphones I was interested in (sennheiser 600s, grados, and the AKG) out. If anyone is in that area I'd definitely recommend him.

post #7 of 28

Unfortunately, our options get smaller and smaller to select from in this area.  Some impressions of our selection:

 

Sound Images (Falls Church): Used to carry Grado.  Out of Business.

 

Sound Works (Kensington, MD): Not sure what they used to carry for headphones.  Out of Business.

 

IQ-Audio (Fairfax - In the old Tweeter location): Carries Sennheiser 515s, Klipsch on-ear 'phones and some in-ear models.  They can order almost anything.  Demonstrating the headphones is a bit hard as there are no demo pairs out and available.  Everything is boxed, so you'd be listening to new phones that have not been broken in.

 

Guitar Center (Fairfax): Has an OK selection actually.  AKG, Shure, Audio-Technica, etc.  No demo pairs are out to try.  Basically, you can buy the headphones and try them out - with 30 days to return them if you don't like them.

 

Gifted Listener Audio (Centreville): Grado and I also see that they're an authorized dealer for Audio-Technica.  Basically, they don't have demo phones to use.  However, they will open up a box of some for you, if necessary so you can utilize  your portable device or CD to demo the 'phones.  They have access to Grado parts, too - pads, adapters, etc., if needed.  Trying the phones out of the box can be a bit hard, because they are not broken in.  You basically have to go by your judgment at the time.  Gifted Listener has a "no returns" policy unless they've specified the option for you to return the item in writing at the time of purchase.

 

Lederers: I haven't tried them, yet.  Sounds like it's worth a trip for me to see and hear what they have.

 

Good luck on your journey!  I'm a Grado fan-boy.  I have the SR325 (non "i") and a modded pair of the 225 (non "i", but are woodies) on their way to me and a pair of SR60 (non "i") that my daughter uses.  If you wanted to try some of these, we could meet up somewhere to demo them, if desired.

post #8 of 28

I have to admit this is all news to me.  I tried to check out several in the area and they were all out of business (as stated above) so I thought they were all gone.  It's good to know there's still something...

 

Actually, the best option would have been to go to the headfi get together Armandhammer mentioned above...

post #9 of 28

I forgot to list JS Audio - in downtown Bethesda.  They're very much alive ... and open.  I'm just not sure which, if any headphones they carry.  However, they do sell Wilson speakers and McIntosh audio gear.  They used to be a big Dynaudio dealer - and still appear to be.  I think they picked up Wilson speakers when Soundworks went out of business in Kensington and probably picked up McIntosh when MyerEmco shut down.  Site: http://jsaudio.com/.   When MyerEmco was still around, they did care 4 or 5 models of Sennheiser headphones.  I don't recall seeing any other brands on the shelf, though.

post #10 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by gmiossi View Post


 


 

I think you're referring to ear-head.com

 

I just bought an AKG k701 there the other day. Frank Diaz was very, very helpful. He's got a nice listening room and he patiently let me try several pairs of headphones I was interested in (sennheiser 600s, grados, and the AKG) out. If anyone is in that area I'd definitely recommend him.

 

I was and yes...Frank is fantastic. That is who I bought my SR-325's from. He's great and actually keeps up with his customers. I've never really experienced customer service like his.
 

http://ear-head.com/

 


Edited by ArmAndHammer - 3/11/11 at 2:33pm
post #11 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by ArmAndHammer View Post



 

I was and yes...Frank is fantastic. That is who I bought my SR-325's from. He's great and actually keeps up with his customers. I've never really experienced customer service like his.
 

http://ear-head.com/

 


Excellent!  I'm glad to hear (no pun intended) of this place.  I'm actually far enough west of DC that Winchester is less than an hour for me to drive.  I'll have to check them out.

 

 

post #12 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by wje View Post




Excellent!  I'm glad to hear (no pun intended) of this place.  I'm actually far enough west of DC that Winchester is less than an hour for me to drive.  I'll have to check them out.

 

 


He is by appointment only so make sure you give Frank a call first. He works out of his house and doesn't have an actual shop. It will be well worth your time though.

 

post #13 of 28
just talmed to frank over at ear-head. meeting with him next friday. he doesnt carry all brands because he only sells what he listens to himself. His knowledge and abity to understand what type of sound you're looking for is worth whatever difference in price you'd find on ebay or amazon. Even saying that, his prices are barely marked up and well worth the time and effort he's already shown without even having met yet.
post #14 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geofram View Post

just talmed to frank over at ear-head. meeting with him next friday. he doesnt carry all brands because he only sells what he listens to himself. His knowledge and abity to understand what type of sound you're looking for is worth whatever difference in price you'd find on ebay or amazon. Even saying that, his prices are barely marked up and well worth the time and effort he's already shown without even having met yet.


Great...post up how it went...tell him Chad from Romney says hi.

post #15 of 28

I've also realized, I forgot to mention Deja Vu audio.  They're in McLean, Virginia.  They're a bit more upscale - on the audio electronics scale, but they do carry Grado.  I'm not sure of other headphone brands that they offer, though.

 

Also, on eBay, there's a vendor from the DC Metro area carrying the FiiO line of amps, DACs and accessories at some pretty good prices - with free shipping.  I'm currently trying to find out if they offer local pick-ups of the items.  I'll share this information if I find out any additional details.

 

 

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