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Cannot find a good balance between portability and quality

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Hi Head-Fi!

 

Let me preface this post by saying that I am new to this community and am by no means an audiophile. I am just a college kid looking for a good pair of headphones.

 

Given this, allow me to shed some context to my situation. I've been interested in good headphones for some time now. Over the past few weeks, I've read good things about the Sennheiser HD 25-1 II, and it just so happened that one of my floormates had a pair for me to borrow.

 

After listening to these for some time now, I have to say that I am pretty underwhelmed. Not saying that these are necessarily bad, but it certainly didn't "revolutionize" my listening experience, something I was hoping for considering the HD-25s are a $200 dollar improvement over my usual earbuds. 

 

I'm fairly certain now that the HD-25s sound rather dull to me because of the lack of soundstage. Some people have recommended open headphones, but this isn't an option since I'll be spending a lot of time studying in the library (and from what I've heard, open headphones leak a considerable amount). Since then I've looked into full sized headphones, because they typically have better sound quality/ soundstage for the same price point. I've looked into the ATH M-50s, but have been told that their soundstage is nonexistent as well.

 

I've also been directed to the Denon D-2000s, which seem to have what I'm looking for- strong bass and good soundstage, but they just seem so HUGE and lack the portability factor. I just can't seem to find a good balance. 

 

As of right now, I'm interested in the V-moda M80s, but I hear these lack bass. I've also looked into the lower end Denon models such as the Denon D-1100 which seem more portable, but was hoping for more inputs and advice before making a move. 

 

 

In summary: 

 

I am looking for a pair of closed headphones that have the portability of something like Denon D-1100, have good bass and soundstage. Price point is flexible, but hopefully not anything over $350. Since I am no audiophile and more of a casual listener, I am probably looking for something "fun" rather than accurate. Listen to a lot of rap, hip hop, but also have a decent amount of alternative rock (Switchfoot/Anberlin, anyone?)

 

Any inputs and suggestions are appreciated. Thanks! 

 

post #2 of 14

AT M50s (straight cord) or Ultrasone HIFI 580 are probably your best choices.  I have the M50s and a couple steps up HIFI 780.

 

You might also want to check all the (close?) red "B" cans within your budget on this buying guide:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/a/headphone-buying-guide

post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KG Jag View Post

AT M50s (straight cord) or Ultrasone HIFI 580 are probably your best choices.  I have the M50s and a couple steps up HIFI 780.

 

You might also want to check all the (close?) red "B" cans within your budget on this buying guide:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/a/headphone-buying-guide

 

Thanks for the reply.
 

Any particular reason you emphasize straight cord? Is there a notable sound difference between the straight and coiled cords? Also, can you comment on maybe V-modas or Denon D1100?

 

 

post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOutlaw View Post

I think the best portables out there are:

1 - Audio Technica M50

2 - Ultrason Pro 900 or 750

3 - Shure SRH940
4 - Beyer DT770 Pro 80Ohms

5 - AKG K242 HD

6 - Grado's

I like the M50's and Ultrason Pro's the most. Make a little search and see what suits you.

Also consider the Sennheiser IE80, they are amazing IEM's for about $350.

Good Luck :)



Thanks for the reply.

 

I've head the soundstage is quite lacking on the M50s. Could you comment on that, along with the soundstage of the other headphones you've recommended?

 

Also, do you have any inputs or insight into the V-modas and Denon D1100?

post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 

alright, will do. thanks man 

post #6 of 14

I'm pulling the trigger on some AKG K550's ($300)  next month. I have not heard them, but the impressions I have read, they fit the bill for closed cans with a decent soundstage. They are kind of big but they are very easy to drive, like a portable...Enjoy the madness of researching products.

post #7 of 14
Quote:

Originally Posted by stven007 View Post

 

Also, can you comment on maybe V-modas or Denon D1100?

 

 

 



I was going to suggest the V-Moda M-80, but if you feel they don't have enough bass maybe the V-Moda Crossfade LP2 would be an option. These are my everyday out-and-about headphones and I really love them. They are not too big to wear outside like a lot of over-ear headphones and they are built like tanks.

 

V-Moda themselves are out of stock of the LP2 until June, but Amazon.com currently have them in stock. There are over 20 reviews on Amazon, all in the 4 or 5 star category.


Edited by RobBeer - 3/25/12 at 9:56am
post #8 of 14
Sounds like you need IEMs if you want bass, soundstage, and closed leak-free performance at a reasonable price. I'd take your question to the portable headphone subforum.

The Denon D1100 are really really bad. Don't buy them. http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/DenonAHD1100.pdf The frequency response alone is enough to warrant fear, then you look at the square wave performance and wonder if an engineering team really designed these, or if it was a child playing with crayons. For reference, the model they used before, the D1001 is miles better: http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/DenonAHD1001.pdf It's still available as the CAL! (creative aurvana live!) headphones just rebranded.
Edited by Maxvla - 3/25/12 at 10:06am
post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by stven007 View Post

 

Thanks for the reply.
 

Any particular reason you emphasize straight cord? Is there a notable sound difference between the straight and coiled cords? Also, can you comment on maybe V-modas or Denon D1100?

 

 


The advantage of a straight cord is that is easier to deal with while away from home.

 

I have no direct knowledge about the Denons.

 

Late last year I got a V-MODA Crossfade LP Over-Ear Noise-Isolating Metal Headphone.  My wife quickly grabbed it to use with her ipad and for traveling.  While not a lifestyle headphone fan, I was impressed with this one.  It was well made and came with a great set of accessories and very good case.  The sound was surprisingly good.  The only major weakness I recall is that the highs were weak in comparison to other cans in its price range.

 

post #10 of 14

Sennheiser HD25

Sennheiser Amperior

M50s..

AKG K550s

V-Moda Crossfade LPs

Or IEMs...which IMO are much more practical.

post #11 of 14
The hd25 and m50 have little to no soundstage... The amperior is very similar to the hd25 with very little changes so there won't be a huge improvement.
My beyer t5p are amazing as both a portable and home pair. Great soundstage, very good overall SQ (needs an amp to get the most out of them) and very isolating. I understand you're on a tight budget but why not look at the lesser beyers? Such as the dt770, t50p or dt1350?
What about the B&W P5? Depending on your sound preference they would be worth looking at considering second hand pairs can be found for under 200$. My only negative comment about them was really the bass which if you read reviews, you'll hear a lot about that.
post #12 of 14

Whoa whoa whoa slow down a second

 

When you auditioned the HD25s where was your source coming from? 

If you're listening to poor quality audio no amount of money thrown at headphones will make them sound better. In many cases they might even sound worse.

post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaplac View Post

Whoa whoa whoa slow down a second

 

When you auditioned the HD25s where was your source coming from? 

If you're listening to poor quality audio no amount of money thrown at headphones will make them sound better. In many cases they might even sound worse.



What he^ said...

 

And also maybe a pair of (2nd hand) Audio Technica ES9/10? The ES10 pretty much meets all of your criteria, except for the price.

post #14 of 14

Heya,

 

I would look at:

 

AKG K550 with Fiio E11 (bass EQ set to 2); sleek and attractive headphone, portable, but fullsize.

Ultrasone HFI 580

Ultrasone PRO 750

Shure SRH750 DJ

 

Very best,

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