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Beating a dead horse... Need advice - DT770 80ohm vs. AT M50

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 

Hi all, I need your collective wisdom. I was looking for a new set of headphones. I currently own Grado SR60s (which due to their poor cable design has issues with the left side shorting out) and a pair of Shure 115s. I just got rid of my Bose AE2s. I tolerated the sound of the Bose because of their extreme comfort, which is undeniably awesome, and I now want to upgrade, but I have a limited budget. 

 

I picked up a pair of Grado iGi's at a local store, and wasn't impressed at all with the quality. I liked the sound a whole lot, but the cables were very cheap, it didn't have any way to prevent tangles, and the ear tips left a lot to be desired. They weren't uncomfortable by any means, but they didn't isolate well. I returned them because they weren't worth the $90 in my opinion. I don't want another pair of full-sized Grados because I think their cable design is unforgivably stupid. They are allowed to twist, which ruins the cable in short order no matter how careful you are. Grado really needs to go to a single-side cable. 

 

That being said, I picked up a pair of AT M50s on Amazon for a great deal using reward points. I also bought a pair of DT770s at a local music store. I kept reading great things about the M50s on here, which is why I went with them to begin with. The only problem I have with them is that they are a little uncomfortable. I have a big head and wear glasses, not a good combo for circumaural cans. The M50s clamp pretty dang hard and have shallow cups, which tends to be a little uncomfortable. Does this get better with time, or should I assume that if I am having problems now I will hate the cans after a few hours of listening?

 

I wanted to try the DT770s because I heard they are comfortable, which they are. The only problem is that they cost considerably more than the M50s and I can't use my reward points on them. We are talking $35 out of pocket for the M50s on Amazon vs. $180 in-store for the DT770s. I have to return one, keeping both is not an option. I don't want to keep the M50s only to hate them after a month because they still feel uncomfortable, but I don't want to spend all that money on the DT770s if the M50s will break in and become more comfortable.  

 

I am running my current setup mostly unamped. If I am listening to vinyl, the headphones are amped, but if not the cans are running from my Macbook or my iPod classic. I rip all of my music to at least 320k MP3 or Apple Lossless when possible. I listen to a very wide variety of music from Dylan to Nirvana to Rap and everything in between. Bass isn't a huge concern of mine at all. I just want something comfortable, high quality, and excellent sounding. Amping my cans isn't really an option either, as I need them to be portable and I don't want to carry around an amp, no matter how compact. I have found that the 80ohm DT770s don't seem to have a problem being driven by an iPod, albeit at a higher volume than is needed for the M50s. 

 

So whats my problem? Well I need to know if the $35 vs. $180 is worth the difference in comfort between the M50s and the DT770s. Right now they both sound great to me, though they each have their nuances that I can appreciate. If you own one or both of the headphones, please let me know what your experiences have been. It would also be nice to hear from other larger headed glasses wearing audiophiles!

 

Thanks for the help!!

post #2 of 21
IMO properly amped you wouldn't think the M50 wasn't even in the same class as the 770. That being said you should return the 770 because you will not be running them to their potential anyway.

M50's are much more sensitive and can be run straight from your ipod more efficiently.

I have got a big melon myself and feel your pain on the clamping force. People have posted getting relief from that by keeping them stretched over a pillow and other tricks but.

I have a nice portable pair coming in next week called the JVC HAS400W. Just released in the US and if they sound anywhere as good as my JVC S500 (which they are supposed to), I personally would take those over the M50 (being an M50 owner) and being on ear, I would imagine would work better with glasses on the go? 30 bucks.
post #3 of 21
Thread Starter 

The comfort just seems like night and day to me between the two. Also, it may just be my ears, but the M50s seems to have very, very harsh highs. I was listening to an unplugged Alice in Chains CD on the iPod comparing the two headphones and the M50 was very harsh compared to a more balanced sound from the DT 770s. 

 

Also, thanks for the opinion! It helps to hear from someone who owns the M50s. 

post #4 of 21
Sure. And i hope I was clear that I am saying DT770>M50 when properly amped. Not the other way around but if you aren't amping them just stick with the M50. Yes the M50 can be harsh but the 770 is also known to be bright in the highs.
post #5 of 21
Thread Starter 

Is the quality of the unamped DT770 going to be close to the unamped M50, or am I getting terrible quality from the DT770s without an amp?

post #6 of 21
Terrible is too harsh a word. It's just that I can't even listen to my 32 ohm DT990's on an ipod even though they are supposed to be intended for that kind of use. I'ts not like you can't hear it is just the potential SQ is not reached. I wouldn't dream of it with my 250 ohm 770's.

That being said I don't own the 80 ohm but from someone listening to both cans back to back, with them both being a "V" shaped signature, I can't imagine many people prefering the sound of the M50 over the 770. And when I hear that type of description my first though is not properly powered. The highs of the M50 are artificial in comparison, sounstage is smaller, less bass extension and quality.

I don't even use my M50's anymore since i bought the $55 dollar JVC S500 actually and just reached an agreement on a trade to be made next week.
post #7 of 21

Heya,

 

Uncomfortable headphones don't get a lot of head-time, and therefore are a waste of money. This applies to any headphone that you find uncomfortable.

 

Surely you have more options than two. One is uncomfortable, and one is not being used optimally. There are other headphones for options. Amazon is loaded with options that are comfortable and easy going on big headed folk with glasses. Ultrasone PRO 750 comes to mind (black & grey version). AudioTechnica A900X comes to mind. Philips Uptowns come to mind. Sennheiser HD380 PRO's come to mind. Shure SRH840's with perhaps SRH940 velour pads come to mind.

 

End of the day, I'd rather be comfortable than uncomfortable. Harder to enjoy anything at all when you're not comfortable. But maybe that's just me...

 

Very best,

post #8 of 21
Thread Starter 

In terms of % performance, assuming I can get 95% performance out of the M50s driving them from a MacBook or my iPod classic, what % of performance am I getting from the DT770s? 

 

I understand that I am not getting the full potential of the DT770s unamped, but in terms of overall sound quality, are the 770s still going to sound better than the M50s unamped?

 

I haven't had enough time to burn both pairs in to make a good determination myself, and I need to decide which pair to return as soon as possible. 

 

MalVeauX, I looked at the Ultrasones, but I really want to keep my budget <$180, which is what I got the 770s for. The store price matched BH photo's online price. The Ultrasones are $225 before tax and shipping. Unfortunately I am in WA where Amazon charges a sales tax. Further, I have to pay for shipping online, which is another drawback. 

 

Thanks again for all of the help! 

post #9 of 21

Is there something preventing you from returning both and then using the Amazon rewards points to purchase the DT770's?

post #10 of 21
Thread Starter 
Amazon doesnt sell the 80ohm version, they only sell them through 3rd pRty sellers that sometimes have very questionable support and return policies.
post #11 of 21
Thread Starter 

Thanks again for all of the help. I ran the DT770s through my amp last night just to see, and it was amazing. They sound good driven directly from my iPod, but hooked to the amp they are something else!

 

Back to the M50s, maybe it is just psychological because I really want to like the Beyers, but does anyone get the impression that the M50s highs are too bright? Almost too bright to be realistic or enjoyable? I have tried mess with the EQ settings on my iPod, but some tracks really seem terrible. 

 

I tried Rolling Stones' "Angie" unplugged and ripped lossless with both headphones unamped, and on all of the high notes it was almost painful to listen to on the M50s. I also tried listening to Nirvana's "Lake of Fire" from their Unplugged album and felt the same thing. For good measure I even tried a few rap songs, and the highs were just too exaggerated for me. Is this the can's lack of mids or does it just naturally have high highs?

post #12 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by CirrusPilot View Post

Thanks again for all of the help. I ran the DT770s through my amp last night just to see, and it was amazing. They sound good driven directly from my iPod, but hooked to the amp they are something else!
Yes! Good move. That is what i am talking about. If u run them properly they are leauges above the m50.
Quote:
Back to the M50s, maybe it is just psychological because I really want to like the Beyers, but does anyone get the impression that the M50s highs are too bright? Almost too bright to be realistic or enjoyable? I have tried mess with the EQ settings on my iPod, but some tracks really seem terrible. 
No you are not the only one who feels this way.

My advice. Get over ur dislike for carrying an amp and get one! Keep the 770. You get what u pay for. Better sound, better comfort, better cans.
post #13 of 21
Thread Starter 

Doc, your advice is much appreciated! I started a new thread RE: the AKG K240. What do you think of those compared to the DT770s? Comfort wise and sound wise?

post #14 of 21
Welcome. I dont have those. If Mal sees this i guarantee he has at least tried them if not own them but i would bring your questions here:
http://www.head-fi.org/t/529144/recommendations-thread-i-e-dont-start-a-new-thread-ask-for-advice-here-please-read-op/19755#post_8752847

There are a lot more people who will see your question there. Make sure u read the OP.
post #15 of 21

I don't mean to hi-jack a thread, but the issue seems resolved here. I only ask because my question directly concerns these two headphones.

 

Since you guys have the M50s as reference, how would you compare the bass of the DT770s in comparison? I've also read variances of the 770s can be more or less bassy than each other.

 

I'm asking as someone who also has M50s and now a pair of HM5s. I'm contemplating the DT770s, depending on what you guys say about the bass.

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