I would not call myself a hardcore audiophile (yet!) as my sole purchases in personal audio equipment consists of a pair of Shure SE210 earphones; and after reading more and wanting something better, I bought the SE420 about a year later, which I am very happy with for all types of music and for movie watching as well as for air travel.
For the past few months I have been considering pulling the trigger on my first set of real (closed) headphones; and have been looking at either the Shure SRH440 or the Bowers & Wilkins P5.
I figured that the Shure 440 will be a good starting point and a good all-rounder for both home / work listening and occasional travel use, but recently I saw the B&W P5 in a retail store nearby, they really caught my attention design-wise, and after researching them online - I came across some excellent reviews on these headphones.
So my question would be which would be the better of the two in terms of overall sound quality? I would be using them for listening to a wide-range of music as well as watching movies and also for air travel and occasionally at work. I am the type of person that would rather buy a better quality product from the outset, knowing that it will suit all my needs, rather than constantly upgrading and ending up with 2-3 pairs of headphones. If the P5 are close or equal in terms of sound quality to the Shures, I would not hesitate to get them despite their price, given their portability for travel and their build quality/aesthetics. On the other hand if the Shures are significantly better in terms of sound quality than the P5, then I would get the Shures despite them being larger and less portable. Source will be a MacBook Pro / iPod Classic / iPhone 4S. Un-amped.
Edited by warrenzn - 8/31/12 at 4:47am