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Advice on a new open and closed headphone

post #1 of 36
Thread Starter 

I have been a long time reader of the Head-Fi forums and joined a few months ago to PM some people for advice.  I am in the market for two new sets of headphones, one open and one closed.  I currently own the Audio Technica AD900, Brainwavz HM5, and Ultrasone HFI-780.  Of those, the AD900 is my favorite because of the soundstage and sweet mids.  The HM5 is my go to when I want a solid, neutral sound.  The HFI-780 is sort of my "fun" can for when I want some more bass and am not after a neutral sound.  I also tried out the ATH-M50 for a few weeks, but decided I enjoyed the HFI-780 more so I kept those instead of the M50.

 

I will mostly be using a PC connected to an ODAC DAC and a C421 (OPA2227) amp, but will also be using a 5th gen iPod video connected to the C421 via LOD.  I plan on picking up an ODA (updated version of O2 amp) when it is released (hopefully) this fall for use with my PC.

 

I listen to a a few different genres with artists including U2, Coldplay, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Tom Petty, Blink-182, Taylor Swift (don't judge), Eminem, Foo Fighters, Kansas, Linkin Park, Rush, and Pink Floyd.  Mostly Rock and Alternative with a few others thrown in.  I listen almost exclusively to FLAC sources.  I have sort of narrowed it down to a few different open and closed headphones, but am open to other suggestions as long as they are roughly within the same price range.  As mentioned, I am looking to purchase one open and one closed can.

 

Here are the few I have sort of narrowed it down to within each category.

 

Open/Semi-Open:

Sennheiser HD600

Sennheiser HD650

Beyerdynamic DT880 Premium

Beyerdynamic DT990 Premium (Not Pro)

AKG Q701

Ultrasone Pro 2900

 

Closed:

AKG K550

Denon D2000

Audio Technica ATH-A900X

Ultrasone Pro 550

Ultrasone Pro 750

Ultrasone Pro 900

 

 

The Ultrasone Pro headphones are the ones I am least familiar with, but did not want to exclude them because I have heard some good things about them, it was just hard finding a comparison between all the various models and also how they compare to the other headphones I mentioned.  Any input is welcome and highly appreciated.  Thank you very much!


Edited by ddcpitt - 6/26/12 at 9:08pm
post #2 of 36

Senn 600 or DT880 for the open and probably the Pro 750 or D2000 for closed (depending on your priorities). 

 

The 600 and 880 are both fairly 'neutral' headphones. If you want a little more fun give the 650 a shot. As for the closed can if isolation is a concern the D2000 is a bad choice (it's bad for portability as well). It is however the most comfortable headphone I have ever worn (along with it's big brothers). The Pro 750 has a fun, aggressive sound. Lots of bass thump and just a kick to listen to. I prefer it over the Pro 900 as it has a more balanced sound. It's the only can I've owned twice.

 

EDIT: The 2900 is open, by the way.


Edited by MorbidToaster - 6/26/12 at 9:03pm
post #3 of 36
Thread Starter 

First off, I appreciate the quick response.  I am assuming the Pro 750 is much better than the Pro 550?  My only concern with the Pro 750 was that it is too similar in sound to the HFI-780 and too close in SQ to be an upgrade.  You mentioned the Pro 750 is more balanced than the Pro 900.  Is the Pro 900 too bass heavy, too treble heavy, or just overall too V shaped?  Any reason why you picked the HD600 and DT880 over the Q701?

post #4 of 36

The Q701 while a good headphone just doesn't have enough bass for my taste (and a lot of others). It also feels cheaper than the other 2 build quality wise, IMO. DT880 winning that one. It's also a lot less comfortable than either one. 

 

Also, yes the Pro 900 is too bass heavy to be a good all rounder. For EDM it's excellent, but for the rest I prefer the 750. While my memory is vague I seem to remember the Pro 900 also being a little sharper treble wise.

 

EDIT: Oh and yes it's flat out better than the 550, IMO.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ddcpitt View Post

First off, I appreciate the quick response.  I am assuming the Pro 750 is much better than the Pro 550?  My only concern with the Pro 750 was that it is too similar in sound to the HFI-780 and too close in SQ to be an upgrade.  You mentioned the Pro 750 is more balanced than the Pro 900.  Is the Pro 900 too bass heavy, too treble heavy, or just overall too V shaped?  Any reason why you picked the HD600 and DT880 over the Q701?

post #5 of 36

i have the dt990 pro 250ohms, despite the bass is boosted, i have to tell you the mid remains very nice and clear. it gives out a high quality fun sound. dont know what the difference is between the pro and the premium

post #6 of 36

The hd600 came up #1 in a thread I started asking about the hp's that you regretted selling the most. Add the d5k and you've got the perfect set of complementary hp's!!

 

gL!!

post #7 of 36

The DT990 is the can on the list with the biggest risk of sounding too sharp in the highs. Some people really like them though.

post #8 of 36
Thread Starter 
I just wanted to thank everyone for their responses. I guess through my reading I've found that people consider the HD600 higher quality than the DT880 so I'm leaning towards the HD600 for open. I am curious about the DT880 still though. Can anyone comment on the HFI-780 vs the Pro 750. I enjoy the 780s and it sounds like I would like the 750s as well. I just don't want them to sound too similar. What about the HM5 vs the Denon D2000? Are they too similar sounding to justify having both? Lastly, can anyone comment on the DT150 closed cans? Maybe how they compare to the other closed. Thank you all very much!
post #9 of 36

As far as decision between HD600 and DT880 goes - it can be an easy one to make just by looking at your source/amp set-up.

 

IMO HD600 goes really well with either tubes or solid state - very versatile, very natural, slightly laid-back quality.  Really excellent all-rounder.  DT880 really shines with tube amps - with SS it can sometimes be a little dry/lacking in the mids.  BTW - I do own both (HD600 and DT880 600ohm) - and both get equal ear-time (I alternate between NFB-12 & NFB-12 with LD MKIV).

 

If you're going to be amping with the ODA/C421 - I'd go with the HD600 - much safer bet.

post #10 of 36
Thread Starter 

So far I've decided to go with the Denon D2000.  As for the open, I'm leaning towards the HD600.  Does anyone have experience with both the HD600 and HD650 that can compare them directly?  I would appreciate it.  I've also been considering picking up the Pro 750s because I've been reading a lot of good things about them.  Thanks for all of your help so far!


Edited by ddcpitt - 7/12/12 at 11:54am
post #11 of 36

i dont have them but most people would tell you pretty much the same thing, hd600 is more neutral and 650 is more "fun", so pick your flavor

post #12 of 36
Thread Starter 
Alright fair enough. Thanks! What about the Pro 750 and Pro 900? Any direct comparison there?
post #13 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by ddcpitt View Post

So far I've decided to go with the Denon D2000.  Picked up a near mint pair yesterday in the forums for $230 shipped.  As for the open, I'm leaning towards the HD600.  Does anyone have experience with both the HD600 and HD650 that can compare them directly?  I would appreciate it.  I've also been considering picking up the Pro 750s because I've been reading a lot of good things about them.  Thanks for all of your help so far!

Denons are solid. I personally don't like Beyerdynamics for their excessively strong treble, though I do like the airy sound that they have. However, both Denons and Beyerdynamics tend to have a v-shaped sound. I consider the Ultrasone headphones to be a bit overpriced and many hardcore audiophiles agree. If you're looking for a closed headphone, the AKG 550 is pretty solid with noise isolation. The Denons are only semi-closed. 

 

I personally have the HD 598 and I think its forward midrange and great treble works well with Jap music. With an amp like the O2, the bass will be very neutral and well present in the music (a common criticism is that the 598 is slightly bass shy). 

 

Can't speak for the HD 600. However, the HD 650 was somewhat boring for my taste and lacking in soundstage compared to the HD 598. Granted, I don't have the best amp available for such a headphone. I would highly consider the HD 598 mainly for its SOUNDSTAGE, which surpasses the HD 600, HD 650, AKGs, etc. The only headphone I've ever heard with a better soundstage was the HD 800. 

post #14 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by reddragon View Post

I have the DT990 Pro 250-Ohms, despite the bass is boosted, I have to tell you the mid remains very nice and clear. it gives out a high quality fun sound. don't know what the difference is between the Pro and the Premium

Seriously, the big difference is price, Beyerdynamic makes more profit off the Premiums then the Pros.

post #15 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

Seriously, the big difference is price, Beyerdynamic makes more profit off the Premiums then the Pros.

 

 

so you are saying the sound is not that much different and yet the price of the premium is about 100 bucks more?

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