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Looking for a cheap but durable pair for my dad: under $100.

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

I recently purchased a pair of Phiaton MS 300 headphones based on a Head-Fi recommendation (which, incidentally, sound great until the plastic breaks next to the cup, both on the original and the replacement pair!). Upon hearing them, my dad, who listens to music constantly, decided to replace his $5 headphones from the early 90's with a new pair of high quality headphones, leaving me to figure out which pair is best.

 

He listens mostly to acoustic/folk music, with a little bit of classic rock thrown in. He doesn't care about base overly much, although it shouldn't be lacking completely; regardless, a pair with strong mids and highs would be best. He's looking for very comfortable, circumaural headphones (he'll probably be wearing them for 8 hour stretches at a time or longer). If his last pair are any judge, he'll probably have these headphones for another 20 years, so build quality and durability is important. :P

 

Lastly, as I mentioned in the title, his budget is from $80-$100. I tried to convinced him to go a bit higher and spring for some ATH M50's, which are recommended everywhere here and I have actually heard for myself, but he doesn't want to go higher than a hundred. Can ya help me out? :)

post #2 of 14

Sony MDR V6 is one possibility.  Darn near indestructible.  And the  Sony ZX700 is a nicely balanced set.

 

The AKG K240 Studio fits most of your requirements.  Should be more comfortable than either of the Sony sets. 

 

KRK 6400 (though this is not held to be as comfortable as the more expensive KRK 8400)

 

Koss DJ100 is another to consider.  There is plenty of feedback on this set here in the forums.

 

The Creative Aurvana Live! is one of my favorite headphones, regardless of price, but it doesn't  fit into the durable category.  I'd say build quality is one of its weaker points.

 

By the way, 8 hr listening sessions?  I'm not sure you'll find anything in this price range that will be comfortable for that long a time.

post #3 of 14
There was a link for the M50s for $99 on the deals thread recently. Not sure if it's still going on or not.
post #4 of 14
I think it still is there. With MIR @Sound Professionals
post #5 of 14

I second the K240 Studio if he wouldn't mind open headphones. I liked my pair a lot, I think they had a lot of strong points. And comfort was one of them. These were the most comfortable pair I've owned (which isn't saying much I guess, but I could wear them for extended periods of time with no discomfort). I thought they were great for vocals and rock music too. Acoustic guitar just sparkled on these. Honestly, they were a really nice headphone in my opinion. The only thing they fell a bit short for me on is classical music. I think they had a bit too much high end and almost a plasticky sound, with classical music, if that makes sense. Although they weren't bad for solo stuff, my issues were mainly with symphonic stuff. Not the most natural sound, but nonetheless I could enjoy them for that.

 

Just my thoughts on these headphones and my experiences with them. Actually, as soon as I read your title the K240 Studio came to mind instantly. 


Edited by BrownBear - 7/5/12 at 6:29pm
post #6 of 14

Samson SR850 (made by Superlux) semi-open headphones, $50.

Sometime on eBay you can get velvet ear pads that fit the SR850 for $15.

post #7 of 14

Another vote for AT M50s.  You can easily find them discounted heavily on Ebay or Amazon.  Excellent sound, quality, comfort....

 

jhv

post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kerry56 View Post

Sony MDR V6 is one possibility.  Darn near indestructible.  And the  Sony ZX700 is a nicely balanced set.

 

The AKG K240 Studio fits most of your requirements.  Should be more comfortable than either of the Sony sets. 

 

KRK 6400 (though this is not held to be as comfortable as the more expensive KRK 8400)

 

Koss DJ100 is another to consider.  There is plenty of feedback on this set here in the forums.

 

The Creative Aurvana Live! is one of my favorite headphones, regardless of price, but it doesn't  fit into the durable category.  I'd say build quality is one of its weaker points.

 

By the way, 8 hr listening sessions?  I'm not sure you'll find anything in this price range that will be comfortable for that long a time.

 

I may be exaggerating the time slightly, but he goes into his office and can stay there all day sometimes. :P

 

Great suggestions from everyone, keep them coming. Also, anyone got a link on the $99 M50's? I've been thinking about a pair for myself, but couldn't find them for $99 when I looked on Sound Professionals. 

post #9 of 14

I'd caution the recommendation on the M50's. They're certainly very competent headphones, but you mentioned that strong mids would be one of the requirements--a common complain about the M50 is its (slightly) recessed mids. It also has slightly boosted lows, which may not irk your dad, but it doesn't seem like he'll look out for that as much of a benefit either.

 

Sony V6 keeps getting recommended as a tough, long-lasting workhorse, and it has a good rep among musicians and sound crew. Definitely worth considering.

 

Shure 440 can be pretty good too, as long your dad doesn't need particularly deep ear cups. That was the only dealbreaker for me when I owned the 440.

post #10 of 14

Sony MDR-V6. My dad's friend has had a pair for the past 12 years or so. Extremely durable. Plus, they are comfortable, and they sound great!

post #11 of 14
You can get Shure 440s for about $100. They are really tough and I think your dad would find them an upgrade.
post #12 of 14
post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Silverflash View Post

I recently purchased a pair of Phiaton MS 300 headphones based on a Head-Fi recommendation (which, incidentally, sound great until the plastic breaks next to the cup, both on the original and the replacement pair!). Upon hearing them, my dad, who listens to music constantly, decided to replace his $5 headphones from the early 90's with a new pair of high quality headphones, leaving me to figure out which pair is best.

 

He listens mostly to acoustic/folk music, with a little bit of classic rock thrown in. He doesn't care about base overly much, although it shouldn't be lacking completely; regardless, a pair with strong mids and highs would be best. He's looking for very comfortable, circumaural headphones (he'll probably be wearing them for 8 hour stretches at a time or longer). If his last pair are any judge, he'll probably have these headphones for another 20 years, so build quality and durability is important. :P

 

Lastly, as I mentioned in the title, his budget is from $80-$100. I tried to convinced him to go a bit higher and spring for some ATH M50's, which are recommended everywhere here and I have actually heard for myself, but he doesn't want to go higher than a hundred. Can ya help me out? :)


I'd give him some alternatives.. Maybe some pics of some of the classic / retro styles and get more clear on his listening preferences. May want to find a place where he can demo the effects of closed and open phones - and what role active noise cancelling plays.  So.. have some fun and do some 'shopping' together. I'm sure there will be a few he'll like and a few he'll absolutely love. good lucj

post #14 of 14

I also suggest the k240s. A very nice pair, though it could do with some amping. The v6 is also a very good choice. very lightweight and much more portable than the k240, so maybe that would be better.

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