Consider the Creative Aurvana Live! (anywhere from $60-100 online) as well - rich mids, great bass and impressive soundstage for a closed headphone makes them great for both music and gaming. They're my primary headphone for movies as well.
Best combo music/gaming headphones in 2012? - Page 2
Head-Fi's Best Sellers
People may be interested in MLE's ideas here: http://www.head-fi.org/t/534479/mad-lust-envys-headphone-gaming-guide-w-dolby-headphone-updated-2-19-2012-petition-added/4500#post_8203637
I asked him to choose one closed and one open option for up to $600 and one amp for up to $300. Here's what he came up with:
If $600 is the limit on headphones, then:
Good soundcard like the Essence STX (which has a strong amp by itself, is a soundcard which means it's a DAC, and has Dolby Headphone)
Optional: JDS Objective O2 amp
That saves you a lot of money and does everywthing you want. If you feel like being even more audiophile for music and non gaming needs, then you can decide on an external amp+dac, later on. For now, these three things would be quite enough.
This would be the route I'd go in your position.
I have asked whether it would be worth upgrading to the Denon D5000. If you're interested then read the responses in his thread as they come in.
Also worth noting that he has directed me to another thread which is focused on PC audio (he plays on consoles and focuses on 5.1 setups).
Update: I'm now leaning towards Denon AH D2000 or AKG K550 (after reading Tyll's recent review on his website):
I have backed away from D7000 as the 2000 probably gets me a lot of the way there at nearly a quarter of the price (£245 vs £600 on Amazon). The AKG K550 is tempting and is reviewing really well.
From WHAT I READ (zero personal experience with either of these):
Both are closed cans, with AKG probably marginally more comfortable and sealing better (leaking less).
Denon has a slightly better soundstage.
Denon has much better bass (esp sub-bass) response.
AKG has clearer mids and generally more natural sounding (less hype at either end of the spectrum).
Overall, Denon makes more of an impact, and more suitable for what i would call 'fun' - electro/dubstep/movies. AKG has a more natural sound and detailed mids, so *maybe* better for gaming.
Again, this is just a simpleton's summary of what I have read here on Head-Fi.
Now the big question is... what amps work best with these (at reasonable price), considering my soundcard is the high-end X-Fi Titanium HD.
- 4,096 Posts. Joined 6/2001
- Location: Bozeman, Montana
- Select All Posts By This User
I don't think this is true. The Denons, in my experience, are less "tight" in the bass than the K550, and measurements show more bass extention on the 550.
I think the looseness of the bass in the Denons gets misidentified as as having MOAR BASS!! But it's just that it draws attention to itself by being a bit bloomy.
The clean, tighter bass of the 550 sits properly in the mix, doing its job, and not drawing attention to itself ... but its better quality bass, IMHO.