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Best (currently available) closed cans?

post #1 of 39
Thread Starter 

I'm curious to find out what folks here consider the best closed cans currently on the market? That's not including discontinued and crazy-expensive closed headphones, such as the Sony R10s.

 

As a side note, here's my current situation:

 

I have some Denon AH-D7000s and I'm generally happy with them. Of course the urge to upgrade has raised it's head after a period of time, and I'm wondering if I can do better in terms of overall clarity, balance, and extension (I realize that's also dependent upon having a quality DAC and amp). I listen to all types of music. I'm thinking I could turn them into LA7000s, although that would run me in over $800 on mods alone, and I'm not sure if it's worth it. I'm also thinking about trying out some Ultrasone Edition 8s which of lot of respected Head-Fiers use as their *only* pair of closed cans. What sonic strengths do they have over the (stock) 7000s?

 

I'm ruling out open cans, as I share a work studio with my wife. I listen to headphones all day long and the sound of my HE-5LEs drive her nuts. When loud, they sound like low volume speakers to bystanders!


Edited by 1974 - 3/29/11 at 11:01am
post #2 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1974 View Post

I'm curious to find out what folks here consider the best closed cans currently on the market? That's not including discontinued and crazy-expensive closed headphones, such as the Sony R10s.

 

As a side note, here's my current situation:

 

I have some Denon AH-D7000s and I'm generally happy with them. Of course the urge to upgrade has raised it's head after a period of time, and I'm wondering if I can do better in terms of overall clarity, balance, and extension (I realize that's also dependent upon having a quality DAC and amp). I listen to all types of music. I'm thinking I could turn them into LA7000s, although that would run me in over $800 on mods alone, and I'm not sure if it's worth it. I'm also thinking about trying out some Ultrasone Edition 8s which of lot of respected Head-Fiers use as their *only* pair of closed cans. What sonic strengths do they have over the (stock) 7000s?

 

I'm ruling out open cans, as I share a work studio with my wife. I listen to headphones all day long and the sound of my HE-5LEs drive her nuts. When loud, they sound like low volume speakers to bystanders!


I'm soooo not a closed headphone guy, but I'm posting this response regarding your D7000s.  Honestly I have no idea what a LA7000 sounds like.  But I will say that, back when I was a young and impressionable Head-Fier I bought $125 worth of Jena Labs cryo'd cable and made a hp cable from it. I honestly have tried and tried to tell the difference to my stock Sennheiser cable and cannot.  A big chunk of what you pay for with the LA7000 upgrade is the cable, so I can't recommend it from my own experience, but I think you can get the non-cable upgrades.

 

I owned a pair of D7000s and I performed a partial Markl mod on them.  I can say that the Markl mod has it's supporters and non-supporters for a reason.  A little bit of Dynamat changes the sound of these dramatically. Many don't like it. I did.  The bass became much tighter and more controlled and the midrange came forward a fair bit, and I didn't even do a full mod, just the piece on the magnet back and the ring around the driver baffle (and a few squares around the frames).   Truly the D7000 is a fantastic headphone and with a little tweaking you can tune it to your tastes for little money. But from my experience with so-called high-performance cabling I don't drink that Kool-Aid any more.  So you may ask, If I liked the modded D7000s why don't I still have them?  I'm sooooo not a closed headphone guy.

 

 


Edited by cswann1 - 3/29/11 at 2:57pm
post #3 of 39

edition 8 (palladium) should be at the top of your list if you can afford it. I havn't been fortunate enough to listen to a pair yet, but dam I can't think of any headphones I want more!

 

am I becoming an ultrasone fanboy or what? dt880smile.png


Edited by colmustard - 3/29/11 at 3:24pm
post #4 of 39
Thread Starter 

Thanks cswann1, that's some good advice. It's nice to know that a cable upgrade isn't always necessary, and yes, that's where a large chunk of the cash for the LA mod goes. I'm always wary of the placebo effect, where costly upgrades can trick you into thinking it makes a difference. I'm not one for chasing a tiny fraction of sound alteration when spending hundreds of dollars, for that amount of cash it would have to make a big difference, and for the better. I found out recently the 7000s are very responsive to EQ fine tuning. Bumping the the mids up a little seems to cure low-end boominess and brings out vocals nicely.

 

Does anyone else have any closed headphone love (or hate) to enlighten us with?

post #5 of 39
Thread Starter 

Quote:

Originally Posted by colmustard View Post

edition 8 (palladium) should be at the top of your list if you can afford it.

 

I can afford it, but am waiting for some second hand E8s to pop up. It seems that a grand would be a more reasonable price, all things considered. They're certainly nice looking, and being hand built in Germany is cool - but it's all about the sound with me. I'm wondering if they can sonically "take things to the next level" (with sufficient DAC and amp) compared to 7000s.


Edited by 1974 - 3/29/11 at 3:38pm
post #6 of 39

I've been hearing nothing but praises for Smeggy's thunderpants which is a closed orthos as opposed to the open orthos that is the HE-6s and LCD2s.

 

Personally, i've been using the Sony MDR-Z1000, which is the current closed flagship from Sony and i'm loving it. And although i can't recommend it highly enough, there are many other people who have heard it and disliked it.

 

Either ways, your best bet would be buying used off the FS forums and selling them for little loss if you so choose to. That would be the most economical method of sampling as many phones as possible.

post #7 of 39
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by crumpler View Post

I've been hearing nothing but praises for Smeggy's thunderpants which is a closed orthos as opposed to the open orthos that is the HE-6s and LCD2s.

 

Closed orthos, eh? How interesting, I had no idea that even existed. I'll read up on them, thanks!

 

Personally, i've been using the Sony MDR-Z1000, which is the current closed flagship from Sony and i'm loving it. And although i can't recommend it highly enough, there are many other people who have heard it and disliked it.

 

Will check these out too. My MDR-7509s lasted me for years before I got into the hi-end headphone thing, so I'm actually a fan of Sonys.

 

Either ways, your best bet would be buying used off the FS forums and selling them for little loss if you so choose to. That would be the most economical method of sampling as many phones as possible.

 

Yup, that's the plan :)


 

 

post #8 of 39

^^ smily_headphones1.gif

post #9 of 39

beyer t5p? edition 8 and d7000 moded

post #10 of 39
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by eroarex View Post

beyer t5p?



Wow, I hadn't even seen the closed back equivialent of the T1. I'm glad I started this thread, much to research now.

post #11 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1974 View Post

I'm curious to find out what folks here consider the best closed cans currently on the market? That's not including discontinued and crazy-expensive closed headphones, such as the Sony R10s.

 

As a side note, here's my current situation:

 

I have some Denon AH-D7000s and I'm generally happy with them. Of course the urge to upgrade has raised it's head after a period of time, and I'm wondering if I can do better in terms of overall clarity, balance, and extension (I realize that's also dependent upon having a quality DAC and amp). I listen to all types of music. I'm thinking I could turn them into LA7000s, although that would run me in over $800 on mods alone, and I'm not sure if it's worth it. I'm also thinking about trying out some Ultrasone Edition 8s which of lot of respected Head-Fiers use as their *only* pair of closed cans. What sonic strengths do they have over the (stock) 7000s?

 

I'm ruling out open cans, as I share a work studio with my wife. I listen to headphones all day long and the sound of my HE-5LEs drive her nuts. When loud, they sound like low volume speakers to bystanders!


My LA7000 sound like my HE-5 LE in the mids, with slightly more sparkle in the highs, and a few dB more bass which is a little slower than the HE-5 LE.

 

post #12 of 39

I love my Ed8 though many who have heard them find the bass overpowering which rather surprises me since I absolutely do not consider myself a basshead and find something like the JVC DX1000 too much (this is also a contender for top closed can btw).

 

I heard antonyfirst's Thunderpants last summer and found that for certain things they were fantastic and had the most magnificent midrange I have ever heard but on other recordings it just became too much. The bass was deppe and tight but there was something about the treble I didn't like (can't remember what).

 

Have never heard the D7000 so can't compare

post #13 of 39

Sorry 2x post


Edited by Redcarmoose - 3/30/11 at 7:08am
post #14 of 39

The AH D 7000s are my main headphones. I ended up purchasing them at my very first Head-Fi meet second hand. Going to the meet was an attempt to try out lots of other peoples gear on my system so I brought my system along. Funny as there are really not that many high end closed headphones made. I feel that closed headphones have a distinct sound over open backs. I brought a 10 year old pair of Sony closed back headphones to the meet as I felt they sounded best in my system at the time.

 

 

I learned a lot from the fellow head-fiers, all were really cool and we had a great time. The facts are that each human has a certain sound which he responds to through headphones. There are also constants which the group would all agree are an improvement to a system. I was amazed at some people's idea of detailed sound. Many seem to get a system with less bass tone in an attempt to bring out high detail.

 

 

The AH D 7000s are not perfect in any way. You can get them to respond better and better with equipment but that woody sound is just part of what they are. I am not saying to spend a huge amount of money on cords. Just believe that system speed and detail are cord dependent. The best way to hear this is a meet! Find someone with power cords and RCAs and hear how your system will change with the stock AH D 7000s.

 

What has been shown to many of us here at Head-Fi is that the AH Ds are one of the best sets in the world and they will show you a sound you cannot believe if you just bring it to them.

post #15 of 39

Of course, Audio-Technica also makes closed headphones, ATH-W5000, etc.

 

Also look in to Victor DX1000


Edited by nullstring - 3/30/11 at 10:40am
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