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New headphones - what to get?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

Greetings all. I'm new to the forum. It's good to be here and thanks for having me. 

 

My old Sennheiser headphones are ready to retire, and i'm at a loss for which kind to replace them with; reliable and comprehensive reviews are hard to find on this matter, so thank you all for your input. right now i'm looking at a Sennheiser HDR 160, but perhaps now would be a good time to cross over to Sony?

 

To give you a ball park figure, I'm looking for something as close to High Fidelity as $100 - $200 can go. My main requirements are pretty simple and are as follows: 

 

The audio quality must cater well to rock and heavy metal (namely Devin Townsend). They must be full sized, and while they can be as big and  ugly, wired and inconvenient as they want; they must be comfortable around the ears for long periods. 

 

Suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I'm also after a solid preforming mp3 player to go with it, so if headphone amps or mini amps are recommended for boosting quality, I'm willing to go the extra mile on that on that too.

 

 


Edited by 2manyKblz - 8/18/11 at 7:49am
post #2 of 13

1.)  Creative Aurvanan Live!

$99

http://www.amazon.com/Creative-EF0060-Aurvana-Live-Headphones/dp/B000ZJZ7OA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1313679073&sr=8-1

Excellent sound quality for the price

 

2.)  Audio Technica ATH-M50

$100 - $150

These are highly recommended by headphone.com and all of their crew.  I really like them and at this price point they are hard to beat.

http://www.headphone.com/headphones/audio-technica-ath-m50.php 

 

3.)  SHURE SRH 840

$199

Excellent cans from a great company.  They have a detachable cord as well.  Sonically crisp and clear with moderate bass influence.

http://www.headphone.com/headphones/shure-srh840.php

 

4.)  Total Bithead ( amp / dac )

$150

Excellent at giving your already good headphones a much needed boost.  Picks up the low end and quickens the headphone.

http://www.headphone.com/headphone-amps/headroom-total-bithead.php

 

 

Good luck!


Edited by NA Blur - 8/18/11 at 7:57am
post #3 of 13

Grado sr-225i - 200$. Great for rock. Bad for libraries. Might have to spend an extra $5-$15 to make them comfy.

post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 

 

I really like the reviews I've found on SHURE SRH 840 - free replacement pads and detachable cable makes for some awesome features. I've found it for $175, I can make room for a new mp3 player. But aesthetically it looks very plain and about as comfortable as every other over-the-ear headphone that ever came out of a price bin - plz shout me down if i'm wrong, cuz this is a good deal if otherwise

 

I'm also liking the reviews I've found on JVC HA-RX900 - selling for $150 (I can get it cheaper, but not in my 2 weeks deadline), it looks ultra comfortable & snug, appears to have good sound insulation, and it's aesthetically appealing - I gotta say I'm a little seduced by the "beast" factor these headphones have to offer my computer space. Well $#!+, for $25 more I COULD go with integrity and buy the SRH 840. But would there really be that great of a difference in audio quality between the two? I'm seeing "Pro" this, and "DJ" that but I understand how and marketing and reputation works in this industry too.  

 

The Creative Aurvanan Live! is cheaper and obviously reduced in sound quality, but is allowing budget for a Headphones amp which may compensate for quality?

 

lol - I've read that Grando is "torturous to wear" after a while. If so, where does the extra $15 go to make 'em comfortable?


Edited by 2manyKblz - 8/18/11 at 10:29pm
post #5 of 13
post #6 of 13


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2manyKblz View Post

 

I really like the reviews I've found on SHURE SRH 840 - free replacement pads and detachable cable makes for some awesome features. I've found it for $175, I can make room for a new mp3 player. But aesthetically it looks very plain and about as comfortable as every other over-the-ear headphone that ever came out of a price bin - plz shout me down if i'm wrong, cuz this is a good deal if otherwise

 

I'm also liking the reviews I've found on JVC HA-RX900 - selling for $150 (I can get it cheaper, but not in my 2 weeks deadline), it looks ultra comfortable & snug, appears to have good sound insulation, and it's aesthetically appealing - I gotta say I'm a little seduced by the "beast" factor these headphones have to offer my computer space. Well $#!+, for $25 more I COULD go with integrity and buy the SRH 840. But would there really be that great of a difference in audio quality between the two? I'm seeing "Pro" this, and "DJ" that but I understand how and marketing and reputation works in this industry too.  

 

The Creative Aurvanan Live! is cheaper and obviously reduced in sound quality, but is allowing budget for a Headphones amp which may compensate for quality?

 

lol - I've read that Grando is "torturous to wear" after a while. If so, where does the extra $15 go to make 'em comfortable?

The JVC HA-RX900s sell for $60 (with no sales tax and free shipping), not $150

The CALs (Creative Aurvana live) are $100 and sound great, the cups are a little on the small side, barely fit over ears.
 

 

post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 

 

Sux - "just buy everything from Amazon", indeed. Of course, I need to create a profile; I'm from Australia.

 

I take my hat off to you guys. Consumerism has it made in America - EVERYTHING is cheaper over there, but actually readily available too. In the Sony society we call Australia, we have to import if we want something different, and unfortunately, as far as good deals go, America is where the buck stops. I can import DVDs, games & books from Amazon but not electronics? Yet I can buy electronics over Ebay - OUTRAGEOUS, I SAY! There could never be an emoticon angry enough to express my frustration. 

 

There's also a 3 week time limit and there's no guarantee the product will arrive from the US in time, unless mailed by priority airmail. In terms of buying from the US, ebay is my only viable option. Any help in these areas would be greatly appreciated.

post #8 of 13

If your willing to settle for decent headphones.

Superlux HD-668B, best U.S.A. price is $45 (plus shipping)

 

With the money you save you can also get a cheap single tube headphone amplifier, price start around $50, on eBay, ships from China.

post #9 of 13

I'm just wondering, not trying to be rude, how many times have we talked about this??

post #10 of 13

With the Grado's you can get Sennheiser 414 pads which are supposed to be more comfortable, or you can get the grado "comfies" (which you can then cut a hole in to not lose HF)

post #11 of 13

Grado will not satisfy your sonic cravings until the RS series or higher.  I have heard just about every Grado out there and currently own a pair of 225i's and they never get any ear time.  They are spaciously barren, bright, and the bass does not extend far enough.  There are ways to make the Grado series headphones comfortable, but should you have to manipulate your gear to have a better listening experience.  For me it is more about finding the right gear in the first place.

 

Coming from someone who listens to headphones 10 hours a day I can tell you that the if you hear gripes about how something fits / feels I avoid it.

 

The Shure's will be a great mid-level headphone.  You will not find anyone chiding you over that set.

 

As for players I use my iPod touch because the DAC inside an iPod is actually pretty nice and sets the bar for portable audio.

post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Coming from someone who listens to headphones 10 hours a day I can tell you that the if you hear gripes about how something fits / feels I avoid it.

 

I'm rolling with your advice on the comfort aspect, especially since i'm a gamer as well; I'll go with the JVC - I also found it for $100 which makes room for at least the portable player.  there isn't much bench testing for Metal out there, but while apparently the Shure is outstanding for rock, acoustic & classical etc, it apparently also needs a headphone amp to punch base. 

 

As for the Ipod touch - it's good quality? Does the audio output stand up to mp3 players? I don't know much about portable players, but I've always through mp3 players would be more catering to sound quality.

 

     Quote:

Grado will not satisfy your sonic cravings until the RS series or higher

 

That's one of my gripes with buying headphones: reputation vs price bracket doesn't necessarily reflect quality. So If you aren't prepared to spend $500, you have to wade through reviews to find value. On that note: thank you all for your recommendations and guidance.

 


Edited by 2manyKblz - 8/19/11 at 7:09pm
post #13 of 13

List of headphones for Rock in the $100 - $200 Range:

1. Any and all grado headphones that can be had for $100 - $200

2. Do any other ones really matter?

 

My recommendation is a pair of SR125's. I've had the 60,80,125,225's and I still believe that the SR125's out match the 225's. Haven't tried the "i" versions of these headphones but for heavy rock, you can't go wrong with these headphones; especially when grados were designed and tested with rock music in mind. John even admits to using Clapton vinyls as part of his tests for headphones. 

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