Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › [Review] Battle of the Entry-Level Rivals: Ultrasone HFI-580 vs Audio Technica M50 (vs Pro700 MK2)
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

[Review] Battle of the Entry-Level Rivals: Ultrasone HFI-580 vs Audio Technica M50 (vs Pro700 MK2) - Page 2

post #16 of 146
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by GN3RAL KARL View Post

That is an awesome comparo!  (If you want, you should throw that up on Amazon o2smile.gif).  I always like to hear different impressions on headphones too.  These Ultrasones that many say are great...I need to try some one of these days. 

 

I also further modded my MK2 with the Beyer softskins for comfort.  They are hands down the most comfortable pair of closed headphones that I've worn.  Coming from someone that wears glasses and has discovered that many cans press on the arms of my glasses to my head (near the temple), forcing me to take them off after an hour or two (including the MK2 stock, and with M50 pads), this is beyond a revelation for me!  The sound is virtually the same as the MK2 with M50 pads.

 

Anyways, great review!



Don't you have to buy from Amazon to do reviews? :S

 

I also wear glasses, but somehow headphones don't give me too much comfort trouble. SOMEHOW.

 

Maybe I'll try another comparison with the Beyer pads. Not garanteed though, since I'm REALLY strapped for cash, being a student and all :/

 

post #17 of 146

Nope. I bought my AD900 and Pro 900 for different websites and still did a review of them there.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by crinacle View Post

Don't you have to buy from Amazon to do reviews? :S


 

post #18 of 146
Thread Starter 

O rly? I never buy from Amazon since the shipping rates easily hit the $50 mark for me...

post #19 of 146
Thread Starter 

Update! After more listening, I feel that the highs on the M50 are superior to the HFI-580. It's more well controlled and does not get thrown out of balance, unlike the HFI-580 which does so on some treblely parts of some music.

post #20 of 146

Awesome review. Cannot wait to hear the new bass kick in my new ATs. 

post #21 of 146

Excellent review. I really like how you did the testing unamped. At this point I don't feel like my DT 770 Pro-80's produce enough bass without a nice amp. I have a hard case for them but they still aren't very portable. After your review I feel like the Pro700 MK2 might just be the perfect pair of headphones for me. I'm willing to lose a bit of quality to get a lot more bass than my Beyers. I won't be using them with an amp anyways so a bit of quality loss is understandable. The part where you said the bass rivals the XB500 really gets me going. It's nice to have a review from a fellow basshead though, so I can actually take your word on headphone recommendations. I still remember how I got swindled into getting the M50's (first pair of headphones) after seeing them called "bass monsters" in a thread... good joke tongue.gif

post #22 of 146

Yeah man.  Thanks for this.  I read through the "Phones for bassheads" thread (or whatever it was named) and was wildly unimpressed with the direction the thread took. I'm looking for a set of phones that can handle the filthiest dubstep without getting all muddy and crappy when I want to switch over to other genres. I've already outgrown the XBs, for example--I may buy another set one day when I have the extra cash for a set of "fun" phones. They don't have to be perfect any one genre, but my listening range is truly eclectic, from Nina Simone to Rise Against to Flux Pavilion, and I'd like them to be at least "capable" in most genres.

 

As of this moment, I'm considering the Beyer 770s and the 580s, but several people have recommended the Ultrasone 750 Pro as well.  Anyone know the difference between the 580-680-780 series? (they're all within $10 of each other on amazon)

 

Sadly, I'm in a craphole nation right now with no way of auditioning...well...anything.  So it's reviews like these that I'm relying on to influence my purchase decisions.  Thanks again.

 


Edited by benzoylmethyl - 6/29/11 at 12:48am
post #23 of 146
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by benzoylmethyl View Post

Yeah man.  Thanks for this.  I read through the "Phones for bassheads" thread (or whatever it was named) and was wildly unimpressed with the direction the thread took. I'm looking for a set of phones that can handle the filthiest dubstep without getting all muddy and crappy when I want to switch over to other genres. I've already outgrown the XBs, for example--I may buy another set one day when I have the extra cash for a set of "fun" phones. They don't have to be perfect any one genre, but my listening range is truly eclectic, from Nina Simone to Rise Against to Flux Pavilion, and I'd like them to be at least "capable" in most genres.

 

As of this moment, I'm considering the Beyer 770s and the 580s, but several people have recommended the Ultrasone 750 Pro as well.  Anyone know the difference between the 580-680-780 series? (they're all within $10 of each other on amazon)

 

Sadly, I'm in a craphole nation right now with no way of auditioning...well...anything.  So it's reviews like these that I'm relying on to influence my purchase decisions.  Thanks again.

 


To my current knowledge for the HFI series, the HFI-580 is the bassiest of the three, the HFI-680 is the most neutral and the HFI-780 is less bassy than the HFI-580 (but more bassy than the HFI-680) with more treble.

 

In short:

HFI-580: basshead

HFI-680: neutralist

HFI-780: someone who wants a more treble-ly M50 with tighter bass a less bassy and more treble-ly HFI-580 

 

Some say the HFI-680 requires an amp though.

 


Edited by crinacle - 6/29/11 at 1:12am
post #24 of 146

Thanks for the quick reply.  Well, it's definitely the 580s, then.  I've also ruled out the 750s...I'm pretty sensitive to HF and the reports of their brightness has scared me off.  Maybe the 900s?  Whole 'nother price bracket there, though.

post #25 of 146

Nice read OP.

 

Have you tried the HFI 580 through a ZO amp or Cowon mp3 player?

post #26 of 146

thanks for nice review!

post #27 of 146
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by wind016 View Post

Nice read OP.

 

Have you tried the HFI 580 through a ZO amp or Cowon mp3 player?



Unfortunately no. Headphones are the only audiophile things I have; amps, DACs and mp3 players aren't high on my priority list.

 

But I've heard good things with the Cowon + HFI-580 combo :)

post #28 of 146

Heya,

 

Interesting. I like seeing some more reviews on the Pro700MK2.

 

I'm confused on the ratings versus the verdict though. Don't take this the wrong way, consider it constructive:

 

Quote:
Build Quality:
Verdict: Pro700 MKII > M50 > HFI-580

Comfort:
Verdict: M50 = Pro700 MKII [M50 pads (M)] > HFI-580 = Pro700 MKII [Stock pads (S)]

Isolation:
Verdict: M50 > Pro700 MKII (M) > HFI-580 > Pro700 MKII (S)

Sound (Highs):
Verdict: M50 > HFI-580 > Pro700 MKII

Sound (Mids):
Verdict: M50 >= HFI-580 > Pro700 MKII (S) > Pro700 MKII (M)

Sound (Lows):
Verdict: Pro700 MKII (M) > Pro700 MKII (S) >= HFI-580 > M50

Soundstaging:
Verdict: HFI-580 > Pro700 MKII (S) = Pro700 MKII (M) > M50

Insturmental separation:
Verdict: HFI-580 > M50 > Pro700 MKII (M) > Pro700 MKII (S)

 

Out of your categories, your rating system is thus:

 

M50 - won 4 out of 8

700 - won 2 out of 8

580 - won 2 out of 8

 

Then you rate:

 

Quote:
Conclusion:
HFI-580 > Pro700 MKII (S) > M50 > Pro700 MKII (M)

 

Sounds to me like you think the M50 is the superior headphone out of your comparison group. But at the end you're saying your new headphone, your upgrade, is the better can. It doesn't make sense. So it makes me think the M50 is receiving favor from you because it's your main headphone and well worn in and you're long used to their signature.

 

Maybe burn in the 580's and see if they can eventually match, or best your M50's in your categories. As it is, the M50's won according to you.

 

Very best,

 


Edited by MalVeauX - 6/29/11 at 5:32am
post #29 of 146
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MalVeauX View Post

Heya,

 

Interesting. I like seeing some more reviews on the Pro700MK2.

 

I'm confused on the ratings versus the verdict though. Don't take this the wrong way, consider it constructive:

 

 

Out of your categories, your rating system is thus:

 

M50 - won 4 out of 8

700 - won 2 out of 8

580 - won 2 out of 8

 

Then you rate:

 

 

Sounds to me like you think the M50 is the superior headphone out of your comparison group. But at the end you're saying your new headphone, your upgrade, is the better can. It doesn't make sense. So it makes me think the M50 is receiving favor from you because it's your main headphone and well worn in and you're long used to their signature.

 

Maybe burn in the 580's and see if they can eventually match, or best your M50's in your categories. As it is, the M50's won according to you.

 

Very best,

 


Right. I probably should've made it clear: my conclusion was based on the sound quality ALONE, not taking into account build, isolation or comfort.

 

Current verdicts:

Sound (Highs):
Verdict: M50 > HFI-580 > Pro700 MKII

Sound (Mids):
Verdict: M50 >= HFI-580 > Pro700 MKII (S) > Pro700 MKII (M)

Sound (Lows):
Verdict: Pro700 MKII (M) > Pro700 MKII (S) >= HFI-580 > M50

Soundstaging:
Verdict: HFI-580 > Pro700 MKII (S) = Pro700 MKII (M) > M50

Insturmental separation:
Verdict: HFI-580 > M50 > Pro700 MKII (M) > Pro700 MKII (S)

 

In that case:

 

M50: won 1 (or 2) out of 5

Pro700: won 1 out of 5

HFI-580: won 2 (or 3) out of 5

 

In terms of points (where the highest scorer gets 4 points, with the exception of the "highs" and "instrumental separation" aspect):

M50: 11 or 12

Pro700 (M): 8

Pro700 (S): 9 or 10

HFI-580: 14, 15 or 16

 

In case you're still confused, I did mark some aspects with a >=. That's a sign for "equal to or more than". Again, these figures are based on my opinions alone: the real objective comparisons come from the impressions I wrote for each aspect.

 

The HFI-580 remains as the best headphone I currently own. The few peeves I have about them:

1) Mids sound "unnatural" sometimes. Specifically: vocals, strings and wind intruments.

2) Highs are slightly untamed. This may cause some harshness, but they're mellowing out with burn-in. Currently I'm at about 100 hours, don't know what the future may hold.

3) Comfort remains an issue, at least for me. The padding feels a little too stiff for my liking and pushes too hard against my head. I prefer my M50 for long listening sessions.

4) Sharp, detailed and clear, sometimes too robotically so. Refer to no. 1; the HFI-580 could use some warmth to add some texture to the music.

 

The Pro700 MKII is a very good headphone, something I'll love to own in the future. However, these will be for bass satisfaction only; the M50s fare much better in other aspects due to the slightly too warm and smooth signature of the Pro700, resulting in a somewhat "messy" sound. XB500 owners can relate to this; though it isn't as bad as the XB500.

 

Thanks for the input, really helped me to sort out these messes :)

 

post #30 of 146

I probably still need to give the PRO700mk2 a try sometimes but I'm wondering which pads that would be a good fit. The stock ones seem way too small to be circumaural and the M50 pads get way too sweaty for me (and don't like what was described as the change in sound).

 

What is described as the "messy" sound is the huge emphasis in upper bass to lower-mids range as well as somewhat recessed highs contributing to the perhaps too warmish sound for your liking. While it leads to a "messier" sound, the sound also feels more heavy/full which is something I personally like, a V-shaped response curve leads to the opposite, thin.


Edited by RPGWiZaRD - 6/29/11 at 7:48am
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphones (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › [Review] Battle of the Entry-Level Rivals: Ultrasone HFI-580 vs Audio Technica M50 (vs Pro700 MK2)