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The best headphones for hardcore / help in narrowing down a list of potential candidates

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Another newbie looking for headphone advice; I apologize for making a new thread instead of posting in the "buying headphones" thread but I figured this has enough specifics and details to warrant a separate thread...plus it seems like this would just get lost in the sea of replies if posted there.
Anyway, I've been using Koss QZ-5 noise cancellation headphones for the past 7 or 8 years and have gone through two pairs so far.  My first pair died in early '08 and my second has been iffy for a few months, only giving full audio on both sides when the volume dial is adjusted just right etc, but is now not working properly no matter how they're adjusted.  So I'm looking into new headphones for the first time and spent a good 4.5 hours this morning sifting through Amazon reviews and various other sites...but unfortunately I still am nowhere near a clear decision on what to buy.

I'm a broke college student and am trying to save up as much as possible for a new computer so I don't want to blow too much of that savings on a pair of headphones instead, but I still want to get a high quality product since this would be something I'd use pretty much every day.  Under $125 would be ideal.  I'd be using the headphones primarily just plugged into my computer but occasionally for travel as well; they'd be about 70% for listening to music and 30% for things like video editing and gaming.  I listen to mostly hardcore music (well, metalcore/post-hardcore if you want to get technical) and haven't seen a whole lot of info on what headphones are best suited for that genre...here are a few songs to give some idea of what I'm talking about:



I also listen to much softer stuff as well (post-rock, indie, hip hop, alternative etc) but since it's primarily heavy/screamy stuff I listen to I'd like a pair of headphones that would be best suited to make that type of music sound as good as possible.
So far I've "narrowed it down" to 10 well-reviewed headphones under $125 but I'm sure there are still many options that I missed that are as good as these or better, which is why I'm posting here.  If I could get some input on which of these would work best or which should be avoided (or which superior headphones I missed including on this list) it would be much appreciated.  Here's what I've come up with so far...

Sennheiser HD-280 PRO ($73.95), Sennheiser HD555 ($114.95), JVC HARX900 ($56.46), JVC HARX700 ($33.54), Shure SRH440 ($75.99), Grado SR80i ($99.00), Sony MDR-7506 ($83.95), Sony MDR-XB700 ($79.88), Sony MDR-V6 ($64.95), Sony MDR-XB500 ($49.54).

 

So to recap: Looking for high quality headphones that will withstand years of daily use and will be quality and accurate for things like video editing and gaming while also being particularly well suited for heavier music, i.e. hardcore.  Price range is $125 or less but if there's a pair of headphones that would be just *perfect* for my needs and is unmatched by anything in the sub-$125 price range then I may be willing to go higher.  Thanks in advance for any recommendations and advice!

post #2 of 9

Grado SR60i ($80) for your hardcore exclusively + a Superlux HD668b ($45) for your other genres, gaming and movies. Done! 

 

31m9uU%2BxuUL._SL500_AA300_.jpgHD668B.jpg


Edited by Negakinu - 6/14/11 at 10:12am
post #3 of 9

Yeah Grado would be a good Idea

 

I also like my Fostex T50RP for anything hardcore of metal, Those guitars are magic on these. $75

 

Also ATH-M50's are popular for anything other then Jazz and classical now a days.

 

Negakinu, where do you get HD668b? I've heard of some sites but never tried any. 

post #4 of 9
sennheiser hd428 superb cans for the price. I think the hd555 is a bit overkill and not really suitable for you. The 428's play your music style very nicely, and are great for gaming. The bass response is there but is nothing amazing, so occasional hip hop is okay
post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by BotByte View Post

 

Negakinu, where do you get HD668b? I've heard of some sites but never tried any. 


http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/557526/superlux-headphones-now-with-free-world-wide-shipping-general-reference-and-availability#post_7532988

 

post #6 of 9


Seriously, a re-brand? Same everything and everything? and everything?

 

I'm not going to order a pair before someone confirms.

post #7 of 9
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the responses so far,

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Negakinu View Post

Grado SR60i ($80) for your hardcore exclusively + a Superlux HD668b ($45) for your other genres, gaming and movies. Done!


Any reason why you recommend the SR60i over the SR80i?  (other than the fact that they're $20 cheaper)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SennheiserHD View Post

sennheiser hd428 superb cans for the price. I think the hd555 is a bit overkill and not really suitable for you. The 428's play your music style very nicely, and are great for gaming. The bass response is there but is nothing amazing, so occasional hip hop is okay

 

Aside from cost, would the HD555's be any worse in any respect when compared to the HD428's?  Also, could you explain why the HD555's would be overkill/not suitable?

 

I'll look into the Superlux HD668b, Fostex T50RP and ATH-M50 headphones as well.

 

I've seen that the Grado's are consistently recommended for rock/heavier music so I'm inclined to go with them for that reason but some of the cons described by reviewers make me a little hesitant; namely that they're uncomfortable for long-time use and that they're not great for travel or in public since a lot of sound leaks in and out.  I'd be wearing these for long periods of time, possibly on a daily basis, so comfort is a big factor -- and after using such closed noise-canceling headphones for so long I'm not sure that the openness of the Grado's would be a welcome change, particularly on planes, in cars, on buses etc...but then again, I haven't tried them out so I'm not totally sure.

 

Thanks again for the responses, and any additional advice or info would be much appreciated!

post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

I've decided that I'd really prefer closed headphones rather than open ones, so the Grados and the Sennheiser HD555 from my original list are out.  I'm still having a hard time narrowing the choices down to just one though :(

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