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Sony MDR-V6 (and family) Impressions Thread

post #1 of 371
Thread Starter 

So after a long time of searching, I've come to the conclusion that the Sony MDR-V6 and it's family simply don't have an appreciation thread. Lots of headphones and headphones families (or series, such as the Grado's) have appreciation threads, but it seems that many people like, love and think the V6 family (and themselves) deserve an appreciation thread, and as a VERY proud owner of the V6, I believe I could make one. I decided to make a very uniform appreciation thread, so that it sticks out from the normal ones that just say "____ appreciation thread" and only have a few paragraphs and sentences regarding why they like the headphone. I have no problem with that, I just personally think the V6 deserve better (and some other headphones deserve better too ;) but thats for another day.)

 

Now, I know there are some people on the forum who do not like them, or any of the ones in the V6 family, and to that, I say; that's just fine, but please dont come into an appreciation thread saying that a certain headphone sucks, as the matter of the fact is, it's your opinion. What I hear in my ears IS different from what you hear in your ears. I like what I ear in my ears, so I say that "x" headphone sounds good to me, do I say it's the end all headphone? No. So I would expect everyone on head-fi.org to be mature and respect that some people really do like the V6, like me, and to not come in here bashing them, or their family. They're not perfect headphones, but for the price, you can't go wrong, atleast that's my opinion and the opinion of many other people. It's subjective. Fact. Deal with it.

 

Anyway, now that I'm over the whole part of the thread that deals with flamerbait, trolls, close-minded people, and the whole negative group, I should go ahead and get on with appreciating the MDR-V6 family!

 

The Sony MDR-V6 are a closed, circumaural (for most people) pair of headphones that have been around for years, since the 1980s, they have been regarded as "the studio standard for headphones" many times, and, while some people can agree and disagree, they are known for their fairly neutral and flat response (for the cash you doll out), and have been regarded and loved as some of the most durable headphones ever. There are stories of people having these headphones for 25 years! I personally have experience with the sheer durability and ruggedness of these phones as I have tossed them about, chucked them at walls, dropped them accidentally (and unaccidentally), and they still come back to me looking like they were made to be beaten (meaning they looked perfectly fine. Tank-quality build)... the thing is; they were!

 

Very very, VERY big selling points of the V6 (that everyone seems to have a consensus on) are it's atomic-war-proof durability, much better than average comfort (not the best, but damn good.), very clean, utilitaristic and minimalistic styling, it's very versatile and usable coiled chord, and it's ability to be driven VERY easily by most portables, sound cards, and just about every source, with very good returns.

 

Some points that I personally love about these headphones that others may dispute on, is that the plug is heavy-duty and simply looks like it means bussiness, mostly because it does. I also love the sound signature to death! It suits me perfectly and I will be looking forward to upgrading to something else in the V6 family soon (but keeping the V6s of course), and I love the packaging they come in! A red velvet-like cloth bed for these simplistic and rugged headphones, in a golden-shaded box and simple yet intriguing designs. They also fold amazingly well, and are very portable!

 

I've listened to many many other headphones, and I have to say, no, they are not the absolute best sound quality in general, but the sound signature just plain fits me. No other word for it. The V6 family is my family, and for 60$ (US, I got them in Canada shipped, by Amazon.ca for 117$) headphones, the sound quality is DAMNED good!

 

Here are some technical specs of the Sony MDR-V6 if you seem to fancy specs.

 

-
Driver Units: Dynamic 40mm
Impedance: 63 ohms at 1 KHz
Sensitivity: 106 dB/mW
Watts: 0.5 W
Power handling capacity: 1 W
Frequency Response: 5 Hz - 30kHz
-

 

Overall, not a bad spread even just for headphones in the 60$ range.

 

Headphones that are in the MDR-V6 family are; The Sony MDR-V6 (Obviously...), The Sony MDR-V600, The Sony MDR-V7506, the Sony MDR-V7509HD, and finally the Sony MDR-CD900ST.

 

The general consensus on the sound signature is that they are: analytical, bright, very detailed, have a nice tight bass, a little bit recessed in the low-mid, and a little bit accentuated on the high-mids and treble in general, but overall maintain a good recipe for monitoring.

 

For music, lots of people say it's a little bit of a "different" experience than most music aimed towards listening to music, and I personally like this "different" experience! For gaming, I can personally say that they have VERY good spatial cues as to where something is, how fast it's moving, etc, and for movies, I'd say they're adequate. Nothing mind-blowing when it comes to movies on the V6s, but heck! They're quite good! And, of course, for making music and monitoring, that is EXACTLY where the V6 is slotted towards! You cannot go wrong with these!

 

Here are the frequency response charts for what of the family you can find on Headroom. This excludes the CD900ST and the V600.

 

graphCompare.php?graphType=0&graphID[]=1513&graphID[]=2361&graphID[]=2371

 

As you can see, the V6s and 7506s (commonly called the same headphones or extremely similar ones), have a very visible good quality bass, not overbearing in quantity, but delivering in quality, as well as the detail of high frequencies! A visible part of the sound signature is the recession of the lower-mids, and it seems the V6s accentuate the most exciting parts of songs, games, or recordings as climaxes usually take part in the bass frequencies or higher frequences (including high-mid, which, the V6s has quite nice quality of them).

 

For these circum-aural headphones, comfort is very high. While it may not be able to be as comfortable as the XB300/500/700 or other very comfortable headphones, I can easily wear these all day long and not suffer discomfort or excessive weight from the headphones or chord (which is coiled). The comfort can also be increased by buying velour pads or modifying the stock pads if you somehow find the V6s uncomfortable, which I have not heard of, nor seen anyone sick of their comfort.

 

As for portability, these are also quite far up there, while in terms of actual size, these are in the mid-range of size; not as small as PX90s, but not as big as K250s, but they fold amazingly well, can stand LOTS of beating around in a bag (as said several times), can be put into the included leather carrying pouch, and really, can be used quite effectively as "life" headphones for use from morning till midnight and beyond again, as thats what I use these headphones for. They're quite portable overall.

 

As for accesories, there isnt a whole lot given to you, but you are given a 1/4" adapter plug and leather carrying pouch. I personally dont use the other adapter but the leather carrying pouch is quite nice to the feel, feels durable, and is minimalistic in design; just plain matte black with a little white "SONY" logo in the bottom left.

 

Overall, I've said it many times before, but I love these Sonys. Own them and love them too? Leave a reply saying so and why you love em, and throw out some conversation pieces. Dont like em? Thats cool too, if you want to maturely bring it up with a reply, go ahead and do that. Dont like em and are immature? Please dont reply. Have questions about the headphones? Feel free to ask!

 

Here are a few pictures of my MDR-V6 so that we can all have a little bit of an image :)

 

The V6's in all their glory, propped up.

DSCF0011.JPG

 

 

The V6's with a nice sneak-peek of their earpads, which are actually quite soft and comfortable. If the leatherette doesnt suit you, pearstone and beyer makes velour pads for your liking. The isolation on these phones are really quite good, it wont block out too much as to put you in a dangerous situation, but it'll EASILY block out loud annoying noises in the background (such as walking through a highschool at home time where lots of voices mesh together. I hear nothing but music with these on).

 

DSCF0012.JPG

 

A nice shot of the V6 plug, which is very heavy-duty looking and made of metal. Also a good look at the coiled chord.

DSCF0014.JPG

 

The V6 hanging on it's resting spot. Yes the headband is stitched and very comfortable. But this picture shows on of the two complaints of the V6. If you look closely, you can see that the bottom earpad has a bit of a tear in the seam where it was sewn. Now I did say the pads are durable, and they are, but it seems their achiless heel is that seam. Do these little tears on the seam affect the comfortableness of the pads? NOT IN THE SLIGHTEST! They still feel JUST as comfortable as before! Is there padding flying out of the seam that I need to constantly stuff back in? NOPE! The pad seems to be all meshed together in one single comfy piece! Also, I'm just gonna get right down to see if I can sew it back together, hopefully it'll work. I'm gonna get that sewn together. Also, my other complaint which I hope to see if I can somehow modify out of them, is the static shock they give their owners from time to time. These headphones love us so much they give us a little love shock :')

DSCF0022.JPG

 

A nice picture of the headband, clearly showing the "STUDIO MONITOR" moniker placed on the band to show it's pride as a olden-day standard and new-day backup as monitor headphones. Also, it adds a bit of flare and styling points to the headphones, not letting it have an awkward empty space.

DSCF0029.JPG

 

And I could'nt resist. U MAD BEATS OWNERS?

DSCF0032.JPG

 

Thanks for letting me go out on a rave about my V6s! I love these things and after the mods I do to em, they'll probably be staying in my family FOR A VERY LONG TIME, that, or I'll move up in the family, but this sound signature suits me perfectly!

 

Also, I decided that maybe I'll compile a bit of a list of V6 owners, now i know theres tons of em, but I'm just gonna throw out a list of them, along with their family!

 

List of MDR-V6/MDR-V7506 Owners:

- elemein (MDR-V6)

 

List of MDR-V600 Owners:

 

List of MDR-7509HD Owners:

 

List of CD-900ST Owners:

 

Own any of these? Throw a PM, reply, or anything to get thrown on the list! :)

 

Bye!!

post #2 of 371

7506 here, looking for a cd900st!

 

7506 has really surprised me actually, i had heard it was muddy? i cant hear that, its is kind of flat sounding but it makes music sound good and thats all you can ask for.

I want to get the CD900st , dont know why but i want to hear it.

 

I love this photo , it is my current android wallpaper :

 

 


Edited by astroid - 1/18/13 at 12:30pm
post #3 of 371

The remarkable thing about these headphones is look at that frequency plot and look at the midrange. From 1khz to 10khz it's almost as flat as a table top, just the 7khz dip to counter ear canal notch resonances.

 

This is the first pair of headphones I've owned that right out of the box, I had no desire to EQ them at all. They sounded perfect, musical, transparent, and enjoyable. I don't like how quickly they roll off from 10khz on in the frequency plots, but in practice I don't really find them lacking in upper frequency detail very much. Cymbals sizzle without sounding wishy washy, movies and video games have plenty of high frequency detail in explosions, foley effects etc.

 

These beat the pants off my Grado SR60i and were a similar price.

post #4 of 371

Agreed. I've owned a pair of Sony MDR-7506s for 10yrs plus and recently replaced my earpads with new ones, since old ones wore out, and they came back alive sounding better than ever! I've recently purchased Beyer DT-770s, Audio Technica M50s, and Shure SRH840s. I have been doing side by side comparisons since I replaced my earpads and I must say the Sony MDR-7506s sound the best to my ears. The most balanced and just the best from those. I will have to post a full h2h comparison between them on a separate thread.

 

These are the best headphones sub $200 in my opinion, for music listening or studio and production applications. These have been used and abused (used for everything!) and are still holding up strong (no cord  or driver issues).

 

I'm now looking to see if I can get my hands on the older version of the MDR-7509s but can't seem to find them anywhere, at a reasonable price that is.

post #5 of 371

Loved my set but unfortunately it seems the jack is bad. They were my first purchase into the realm of studio headphones and I just recently purchased DT770s to replace them. I have tried to find a way to repair these but I haven't been able to find any problems like mine.

 

Anyways, they are great headphones and really can take a beating. I'm not sure what happened to my pair and it seems rare so I won't judge them.

post #6 of 371
Quote:
Originally Posted by bachatum View Post

Agreed. I've owned a pair of Sony MDR-7506s for 10yrs plus and recently replaced my earpads with new ones, since old ones wore out, and they came back alive sounding better than ever! I've recently purchased Beyer DT-770s, Audio Technica M50s, and Shure SRH840s. I have been doing side by side comparisons since I replaced my earpads and I must say the Sony MDR-7506s sound the best to my ears. The most balanced and just the best from those. I will have to post a full h2h comparison between them on a separate thread.

 

These are the best headphones sub $200 in my opinion, for music listening or studio and production applications. These have been used and abused (used for everything!) and are still holding up strong (no cord  or driver issues).

 

I'm now looking to see if I can get my hands on the older version of the MDR-7509s but can't seem to find them anywhere, at a reasonable price that is.


Sub $100 I'd agree wholeheartedly. Sub $200 though you have to compare them to the M50 which has had rave reviews for similar reasons as the V6, namely they are audiophile, flat, flattering, with a perfect balance of bass, mids, and highs.


Edited by Kodhifi - 1/18/13 at 10:51pm
post #7 of 371

The MDR-7506 was my first set of decent headphones.  I really enjoyed them until I bought my AKG K550s.  I gave them to my brother-in-law, who is now experiencing high end audio for the first time.  He gets an advantage I didn't have though.  His were already burned in when he got them.  I also added the Beyerdynamic Velour pads to them. The stock Sony pleather ear cushions fell apart after a year.

post #8 of 371
Quote:
Originally Posted by treyedean View Post

The MDR-7506 was my first set of decent headphones.  I really enjoyed them until I bought my AKG K550s.  I gave them to my brother-in-law, who is now experiencing high end audio for the first time.  He gets an advantage I didn't have though.  His were already burned in when he got them.  I also added the Beyerdynamic Velour pads to them. The stock Sony pleather ear cushions fell apart after a year.


That's so funny because I have the MDR-V600, the subpar replacement to the V6. I purchased it back in the early 2000's for studio work and within just a few years of infrequent use the pleather started flaking off them. By 2007 it was so bad I couldn't use them any more and they looked hideous. I couldn't find replacements anywhere because they are tear drop shaped and only used on that one model. Finally after almost 7 years of not being able to use them I found a chinese company that sold replacement pads, ordered them and I was so excited to have my cans restored to like new status....until I listened to them and my memory was pre-880, pre q701, pre everything decent and the V600's sucked.

 

Now though I wonder if the V6 will have that same problem because the material looks identical to the v600 ear covering. Where did you find the velour pads? I found something on Amazon for $40 that claims to fit, but that seems a little high considering I can buy Beyerdynamic replacement pads for the DT880 for $30.

post #9 of 371
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kodhifi View Post


That's so funny because I have the MDR-V600, the subpar replacement to the V6. I purchased it back in the early 2000's for studio work and within just a few years of infrequent use the pleather started flaking off them. By 2007 it was so bad I couldn't use them any more and they looked hideous. I couldn't find replacements anywhere because they are tear drop shaped and only used on that one model. Finally after almost 7 years of not being able to use them I found a chinese company that sold replacement pads, ordered them and I was so excited to have my cans restored to like new status....until I listened to them and my memory was pre-880, pre q701, pre everything decent and the V600's sucked.

 

Now though I wonder if the V6 will have that same problem because the material looks identical to the v600 ear covering. Where did you find the velour pads? I found something on Amazon for $40 that claims to fit, but that seems a little high considering I can buy Beyerdynamic replacement pads for the DT880 for $30.

The usual pads people get are the DT250 velour pads. They can be had at BHPhoto for $24

post #10 of 371

7506 for me. Many many pro musicians/producers track/mix/ and even master on these. They are very trustworthy, and sound good for general hifi listening as well. V neutral with a tight bass and nice highs.

post #11 of 371
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kodhifi View Post


Sub $100 I'd agree wholeheartedly. Sub $200 though you have to compare them to the M50 which has had rave reviews for similar reasons as the V6, namely they are audiophile, flat, flattering, with a perfect balance of bass, mids, and highs.

I have compared them with the M50s side by side and I will tell you that the MDR-7506s beat the M50s in every area for me for both listening pleasure and critical listening applications, regardless of the hype and rave reviews surrounding the M50s.

 

The M50s have a similar sound signature at first glance, but once you listen to the M50s enough, I sounds like they compress the sound and ruin the dynamics of a track. Instruments that are not intended to be in the forefront will come forward at times. It makes the sound over exaggerated (not in a good sense), as effects such as reverb and or delay come too forward than originally intended. That combined with the hard V curve in frequency gives them a very digital sound. They don't sound bad but when comparing to other headphones, such as the MDR-7506, the 7506s reproduce natural instruments better, as well as vocals, and overall suits more genres due to its more neutral sound.

 

In my opinion, both the MDR-7506s and SRH840s could be considered more flat and sound better to my ears. From those sub $200 that are popular, after doing a close comparison and listening to each side by side (for extended period of time and different genres), I would rate them: Sony MDR-7506 > Shure SRH-840 > Beyerdynamic DT-770 Pro (80) > Audio Technica ath-m50

 

Both the Beyers and ATH-m50 would be rated very close in last place as both are inaccurate, colored, and inbalanced in their own ways and don't represent the music too well. Although the DT-770s are also inbalanced, when comparison h2h against the M50s, they sound more natural, have better sound stage, and are less fatiguing (in sound and comfort). I would not consider either suitable for studio work.

post #12 of 371
^ what he said.
post #13 of 371

V6's are a very good all-rounder and I still use them. Comfort is really great, and probably one of the best under $100. The bass is really good. My only complaint is the grainy sound, but still very engaging. 

post #14 of 371
Are there any mods for the v6?
post #15 of 371

I always found my V6 to be a bit "shoutey" and edgy in the upper midrange, with some strange resonance colorations at these frequencies.  IIRC they were time based artifacts more-so than frequency based, but admittedly that was LONG ago.  It was a very forward and energetic kind of sound at times.

 

Heres a pic from 2002/3.  I think this was my first headphone mod.  If you look closely the red one has a thin "Y" cable.  I couldn't stand the coiled telephone cord when I used these portably so I pulled the cable off a portapro and used the one in the middle as my portable and the stock one on the right for my PC cans.


Edited by kramer5150 - 1/19/13 at 11:45am
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