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Making the Final Purchase Decision - Need Help

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

I am struggling in making the final decision about which headphone to go with, so I need you expertise and advice. I have been reading the forum for quite a long time now, and initially having started with Audio Technica ATH-M50 I have gone through lots of different headphones. The choices that I am considering right now are as follows:

1. AKG K550
2. AKG K701
3. Sennheiser HD598
4. Beyerdynamic DT770/DT880/DT990 and PRO series

I haven't read much about AKG K550, but according to THIS comparison, it does a pretty good job. I am a bit skeptical about AKG K701 since I have read in a number of posts that it lacks bass. Is this true?

There are a lot of good reviews for Sennheiser HD598, and I am leaning towards this particular headphone. There is some general criticism about its build quality, however as long as it is sturdy and delivers great sound, it is of no importance to me. I am somewhat undecided about Beyerdynamic headphones. I would like to get your advice on these.

I am a metal fan, but enjoy Techno, D&B and trance. So I need some good bass performance. As for the artists I can name Scooter, Armin van Buuren, and Netsky. This purchase will be my, well, probably the first serious step into audiophile music world if not counting my experience with Dr. Studio Beats which I had for about a year. I do prefer an on-ear headphone. I would like you to help me make the final decision given my musical preferences. I will be using an iPod shuffle, and I do not plan to get anything fancier for the near future. Therefore, I most probably will need an Amp. Fiio e7 seems pretty tempting to me. What are your thoughts? And which headphones will I definitely need an Amp for? I am also open to your suggestions for other headphones as long as they don't go well beyond the price range of the listed headphones (for example, my best favorite Denon D2000 is out of my range, unfortunately).

Big thanks in advance to those who took their time and helped me out ;)

post #2 of 17

I am a big Sennheiser fan, and just love my HD-650's. They do many genres well, and are somewhat warm sounding. I do not like too much treble, as it is fatiguing, and the Senns have a slightly rolled off high end. (At least the 650's do anyway - I have never heard the 598's) YMMV.

post #3 of 17

You not saying what gear you gonna use to drive them so be aware that K701 need good dedicated amp plus at least 300 hours of burn-in to drive them, headphones out of modern AVRs will not be able to do the job right, tested with Denon 2310. At the recent NYC meet I heard K550 with 3 different amps and they lacking deep high quality bass for me. I had DT770/880/990 and can say just that DT770 have most bass among them while DT990 have most clarity and details but they have so bright high that  a lot of people including can't tolerate it and sell/return them. DT880 considered most neutral among them but for me while they don't have brightness problem of DT990 they not as detailed as DT990 are. For more info read comparison guide thread at this forum which compares all versions of DT770/880/990 among them plus some other popular headphones. You also should add T70 to your list since they significantly better than DT770 while company isn't planning to discontinue DT line of headphones

post #4 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlatNine View Post

I am a big Sennheiser fan, and just love my HD-650's. They do many genres well, and are somewhat warm sounding. I do not like too much treble, as it is fatiguing, and the Senns have a slightly rolled off high end. (At least the 650's do anyway - I have never heard the 598's) YMMV.


I still have currently for sale HD650 and they have enough highs for me but after having them for about 14 month i discoverd that on my setup, plus some others i heard them with at the recent NYC meet so they too picky with the pairing, they lack deep high quality bass classical and jazz demands after trying HE-400, D5000/7000. I own my new favorites D7000 npw but thinking to get T90 and compare them to D7000 since i heard them at the NYC meet too and on one setup I preferref T90 over D7000 but on other more affordable ones it was very difficult to choose cause i liked some tracks with D7000 and others with T90

post #5 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by olegausany View Post


I still have currently for sale HD650 and they have enough highs for me but after having them for about 14 month i discoverd that on my setup, plus some others i heard them with at the recent NYC meet so they too picky with the pairing, they lack deep high quality bass classical and jazz demands after trying HE-400, D5000/7000. I own my new favorites D7000 npw but thinking to get T90 and compare them to D7000 since i heard them at the NYC meet too and on one setup I preferref T90 over D7000 but on other more affordable ones it was very difficult to choose cause i liked some tracks with D7000 and others with T90

 

I only use my 650's with my TTVJ Slim amd, which is also warm sounding. I listen to 95% jazz - the older classic jazz from the 50's and 60's. With this combo, I love the bass - which on these CD's is always an acoustic bass. The sound is deep, clear, and crisp, never boomy or muddy. It sounds pretty close to live jazz gigs, IMO. I was fortunate to nail the combo of the 650's with the TTVJ Slim.


Edited by FlatNine - 7/8/12 at 11:28am
post #6 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlatNine View Post

 

I only use my 650's with my TTVJ Slim amd, which is alos warm sounding. I listen to 95% jazz - the older classic jazz from the 50's and 60's. With this combo, I love the bass - which on these CD's is always an acoustic bass. The sound is deep, clear, and crisp, never boomy or muddy. It sounds pretty close to live jazz gigs, IMO. I was fortunate to nail the combo of the 650's with the TTVJ Slim.


That's great that you have found a good match you enjoying. I also heard HD650 wit Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1 and they made for each other while other much more expensive gear have problem i'm talking about so i just want to make sure OP is aware about it brfore making his decision

post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 

Need some advice, please :)

post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fract4l View Post

Need some advice, please :)

 

I'm not sure about the phones you've listed as far as needing an amp. My 650's are 300 ohms and they do need an amp with my iPod Touch. I would guess the Shuffle has even less power output than the Touch, so you may need an amp with phones that are greater than even 150 ohms. Without an amp, what you hear when compared to reviews you have read are likely to be vastly different. And as you have read in this thread, pairing the right amp and phones is not guaranteed. This is an expensive hobby for sure. The portable rig in my sig was about $1100 to $1200 USD - and it is not really all that portable. On the other hand, my Cowon C2 paired with Klipsch X10i's is extremely portable, sounds about as good as my rig in the sig, and cost under $350 USD. That is about the cost of some of the phones in your original post. You may want to consider where - when - how you will use your rig, (like commuting by train, at work, at your desk, walking, jogging, gym, etc) and the kind of sound signature *you* like. Just because a certain genre is bassy, does not necessarily mean you want it bassy. And remember that if you are like 99% of the folks on here, no matter what you buy, you're going to want something else at some point just for the fun of it. But I personally would not match an iPod Shuffle with some of the full sized cans you mention. Tell us how and where you will do most of your listening and we can go from there.

post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 

Than you for your reply. I am just looking for a headphone that will best produce the sound as it was intended by the artist (given the price range). I will primarily use the headphones at work and home, using a computer. So, a good isolation is definitely preferred. I don't really care much for portability, but I sure would like to have that option remain available for the future.

post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlatNine View Post

I am a big Sennheiser fan, and just love my HD-650's. They do many genres well, and are somewhat warm sounding. I do not like too much treble, as it is fatiguing, and the Senns have a slightly rolled off high end. (At least the 650's do anyway - I have never heard the 598's) YMMV.

beerchug.gif

post #11 of 17

Since you looking for isolation while using them at work than open headphones like HD650 are not for you

post #12 of 17
Thread Starter 
I would appreciate it if you replied to this thread by first reading what I said in my first post where I clearly stated that my price range is limited with AKG K550, which is $300 and nowhere near $450 price tag of the HD650.

Anybody who can help to make a decision among the headphones listed in the first post for trance/techno/D'n'B? I am looking for a headphone which is best at reproducing the intended sound at a price tag of about $300. Thank you.
Edited by Fract4l - 7/8/12 at 10:17pm
post #13 of 17

If you don't mind purchasing used headphones, HD600/650's can typically be had for around $300 or less. Otherwise, the K550's will be one of your best bets. I suggest taking a look at the Grado lineup as well.

 

Ampwise, the E11 is better than the E7. If you want the DAC capabilities as well, I would suggest the E10.

 

Hope I helped smile.gif

post #14 of 17

Well if isolation is important to you - then open or semi-open cans aren't going to work.  So in that case scatch the K701, HD598, DT880 and DT990 off your list,

 

That leaves the AKG550 and DT770.  I haven't heard either of those - but at least it narrows your field quite a bit.

 

Edit - that also takes out the Senn 600/650 and anyone suggesting Grados (although why anyone would suggest Grados - within your budgeted amount - when you mentioned bass is beyond me).


Edited by Brooko - 7/8/12 at 10:25pm
post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 
The isolation is not so important for me, as long as I don't hear just everything that happens around me. For example, I am not looking for the kind of isolation as it was with Studio Beats with which it was impossible for me to hear, at moderate volume levels, a person speaking right next to me.

I have read in a number of threads that FiiO E11 has some static noise issues, that is why I went for the E7. Is anybody aware if the newer E11 models have that flaw fixed?
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