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Got about $150 to spend... best headphones for the money?

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 

I'm sure you guys get these questions a lot... but I got $150 to spend. I'm wondering what is the best pair of headphones I can get for that money? I was looking at the Sennheiser HD 518's... they are pretty new from what I understand, so have any of you guys tried them out or own them? They are labeled as "audiophile", which is interesting at that price-point. 

 

Anyway, the best pair (and most expensive pair) of headphones I have owned are the Sennheiser PX100's. Would I notice a big difference by getting some headphones around $150? I listen to mostly rock music, if that helps. 

 

Thanks guys. smily_headphones1.gif

post #2 of 35

Grado SR225i for $179 if you can swing the extra, gotta be the best for rock at that price point.

 

Oh and welcome to head-fi!

post #3 of 35

No doubt the M50 brigade will inundate this thread, but I'll throw out a recommendation for the Alessandro MS-1i. Very engaging with guitars, but also does well with most genres. Bass isn't subterranean, but its present and punchy. You'll also pocket some change.

post #4 of 35
Thread Starter 

Ok, I actually could spend about $300 if I wanted... would a headphone + amp be better? What is the best I could do for $300?

post #5 of 35
An amp depends on the headphones. Some need one, but others run fine from an iPod.

For $300, I'd pick up a used Sennheiser HD-600 for $200. No, it's not a new model. But new doesn't mean much in audio - some of the finest products were made years ago. Check out how vintage McIntosh amps, Quad ESLs, and much else sell today. The HD-600 is another classic, and much better than Senn's mid-fi offerings like the HD-518.

To stay under budget, pick up a good used receiver like a NAD or Marantz. You should be able to find one for $100 or less. Don't worry if it's 10 or 20 years old or even older. They make good stuff.

As for that M50, well, you're about to get a bunch of recommendations. It doesn't much impress me, and I've listened to a lot of headphones. The HD-600 still impresses me, though. I think it's an even better value now that the top end is so expensive. I also think the Grado SR-225 and Alessandro MS-1 are quite good. So is the Alessandro MS-2.
post #6 of 35

Grado SR325i, Sennheiser HD600, Beyerdynamic DT990, Ultrasone HFi 2400 and ATH-AD900.

post #7 of 35

+1 to the 225's. If you want some headphones+an amp for 300, maybe get some Grado SR-60i's or Alessandro MS-1's, and invest the rest in a decent amp (and maybe dac). Little Dot makes pretty good tubes for the money, and the Fiio E7/E9 is decent for entry level too, especially with the possibility of upgrading the E7 with another dac soon.

post #8 of 35
The M50 doesn't impress me at all either, and I've heard countless headphones. The HD600 recommendation is a solid one. I would also add the Shure SRH840 and SRH940 to the mix as well. In my opinion the 940's don't need to be amped to sound good but the good thing about them is that they will scale well (meaning, they will improve) with an amp should you decide to buy one down the line. The HD600, on the other hand, absolutely needs to be amped.
post #9 of 35

For 150$ I would recommend the m-50s. I fail to see how you COULD be impressed with the m50s after listening to the HD600s. You guys are recommending 250-300$ headphones compared to the m50.

 

But thats besides the point, if your budget is now 300 the HD600 would still be a stretch plus the amping it'll be difficult to keep your price range under 400.


Edited by Angelbelow - 7/16/11 at 11:10pm
post #10 of 35

Alessandro and/or Grado for rock.

post #11 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by bmd004 View Post

Ok, I actually could spend about $300 if I wanted... would a headphone + amp be better? What is the best I could do for $300?


It could be $450 when you wake up tomorrow, how about $600 by tomorrow evening...

 

Well, I still think Grados 225s are priced well, the 325s are the top of the prestige series and are a little better but at $295 is it justified. The HD600 recommendation is solid for an all-rounder but be warned that will lead to better amps and better DACs and before you know it your eating Ramen noodles for 2 years like half of our members. Between the Grado and Sennheiser it would come down to how you like your rock; take the Sennheisers for a top-tier hi-fi experience, on the other hand you'll find yourself sat on the drummers lap with the Grados, they're... exhilarating.

post #12 of 35
Thread Starter 

How is the HD 598 compared to the HD 600?

post #13 of 35

Dr. Dre Beats! sike! kidding kidding, come on put the pitchforks down.

 

Shure SRH-840 is the best headphone i've owned or heard, and yes nothing from sennheiser sounds better to me vs the 840's.beyersmile.png

post #14 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by droido256 View Post

Dr. Dre Beats! sike! kidding kidding, come on put the pitchforks down.

 

Shure SRH-840 is the best headphone i've owned or heard, and yes nothing from sennheiser sounds better to me vs the 840's.beyersmile.png



What Sennheiser cans have you heard or owned and in what system? Surely you're not making such a call based on just the HD-201?

post #15 of 35

Alessandros, Grados, Shure 440/840, M50.

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