Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › What would you gift your girlfriend?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

What would you gift your girlfriend? - Page 2

post #16 of 104

I'd go with these: http://reviews.cnet.com/headphones/panasonic-rp-htx7-monitor/4505-7877_7-32072371.html

 

Reason? I see a few girls wear them around town so women in general must like the style.

 

I also have a pair and enjoy their sound. 

post #17 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by navii View Post

I'd go with these: http://reviews.cnet.com/headphones/panasonic-rp-htx7-monitor/4505-7877_7-32072371.html

Reason? I see a few girls wear them around town so women in general must like the style.

I also have a pair and enjoy their sound. 

Um... Well that reasoning never worked for me, but that's not to say it doesn't work for others. Those look like Sennheiser MOMENTUM knock-offs.
http://uncrate.com/stuff/sennheiser-momentum-headphones/

I've never heard about Panasonic headphones sounding good, but looking good wasn't something I had considered. The Sony MDR-V6 definitely don't look chic - they look like you just came from a recording studio. Koss also has some retro-looking headphones; after all they did develop the first headphones for music, after aviation headsets. Maybe the OP should get a V-MODA Crossfade LP off of eBay... I got a pair for $60 USD. Unfortunately I set mine down... somewhere... about 3 months ago...

Reading the CNET review (and between the lines, I never trust CNET), they have an aggressive V-shaped sound signature which may get annoying after two or three songs, and have $30 sound quality. They're probably average sounding headphones with a particular fashion look, but if the deal is a listening experience that "floors you with the amazing quality," then there are hot picks for sound quality as well. If you could describe the sound a little more since you have first-hand experience, that might help us tasteless guys, lol smily_headphones1.gif

In the end, the OP should pick a headphone his girlfriend will enjoy, so if looks are part of that, then it's a good thing to consider alongside sound quality and comfort (and price).
Edited by Evshrug - 11/17/12 at 3:11am
post #18 of 104

i think girls are hard to buy headphones for. first, girls are particular about style, second the headphones crumple the hair. girls are particular about those things.

 

i purchased a pair of headphones for an ex, she actually spotted them and pointed them out to me in the store... i only saw her wear them once.

 

girls are just too picky, buy some nice IEMs as they sound good and dont mess up a girl's style.

post #19 of 104

All my female friends loved the Grado look (and sound); coincidentally, they also loved my Olympus E-P2 (and the built-in "Art Filters" - ie, Instagram in a cam that's supposedly the product of years trying to make images accurate). Maybe some people are closet hipsters - myself included, given I had a Grado and an E-P2 in a leather case.

post #20 of 104
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post

Oh, also, IEM fit is very personal... Comfort is very important to me, and I wouldn't want to torture your girlfriend by extension. I found a good fit with the different tips, but if she does go for an IEM, it might be best to buy from some place with a good return policy, like Amazon. You'll have to look in your own country (are you from the UK?), but here is the entry-level Etymotic (I prefer the blue one, but black is $10 cheaper?):
http://www.amazon.com/Etymotic-Research-Noise-Isolating-Earphones/dp/B003S3RFIQ/ref=sr_1_2?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1353133268&sr=1-2

 

This might be a huge problem since, depending on prices, I might be having my brother buy them in the US for me.
I'm from Portugal btw, and good suggestion, added! 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post
E2< E5, E6 < E11 (< soon there will be a flagship E12, overkill for most headphones)
E7 < E17 (< soon there will be a new flagship E18)
I'd recommend passing on a DAC for now, just get an E11 that ought to be good for most headphones, and noticeably better than an iPod's built-in amp. It's a better amp than what is built into the E17, and won't become redundant.
If you are interested in an alternative to your laptop's built-in DAC, and you happen to like playing games or movies through your laptop, you could try the Asus Xonar U3 or Creative X-Fi Go! Pro USB dongles. They are average DACs (hardly better than something built-in to a computer motherboard), but add virtual surround sound processing for headphones, so even with regular stereo headphones you get convincing front/back/sides directional cues.
I sure did write a lot before, huh? Lol, sometimes, I get in these moods. Glad to help!

The thing about the E11 is that it's designed to be a portable amp. I don't need one, not only do I rarely use my Ipod but also the idea of having an extra gadget just doesn't seem to do much justice to the "portability" concept. I do crave its specs as an amp, and ultimately still appreciate the battery-mode for those few times I want to give my Ipod a ride, or lend them it to my girlfriend who uses hers all the time, or even being able to use it when my laptop can't be plugged. Despite all this, it still seems more reasonable to get the E9, which seems to be a much better, lasting amp. Not to mention I too am a huge fan of volume knobs ;)
Also, I'd already checked those two out (along with Creative's X-Fi Surround 5.1 Pro USB Audio System), since I really wanted to give 5.1 / 7.1, even if only virtual, a try. Thing is, reviews are just so mixed. You can get from "WoW!" to "barely convincing at all". I don't know much about DACs to be talking around, but being a digital-to-analog converter, what I was hoping to achieve was better signal fidelity. You think I can't get that with this budget (as in, in a FiiO E10, or similar)?
Thanks!


Edited by Rosbife - 11/17/12 at 7:36am
post #21 of 104
Thread Starter 

Don't know about their sound, but they certainly aren't bulky, while closed, which is great. Thanks, added!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post


Um... Well that reasoning never worked for me, but that's not to say it doesn't work for others.
 Maybe the OP should get a V-MODA Crossfade LP off of eBay...
Reading the CNET review (and between the lines, I never trust CNET), they have an aggressive V-shaped sound signature which may get annoying after two or three songs, and have $30 sound quality. They're probably average sounding headphones with a particular fashion look, but if the deal is a listening experience that "floors you with the amazing quality," then there are hot picks for sound quality as well.
In the end, the OP should pick a headphone his girlfriend will enjoy, so if looks are part of that, then it's a good thing to consider alongside sound quality and comfort (and price).

 

Well, I must admit, the fisrt thing she appears to consider about headphones is their looks. To me it's kinda sad, but hey, dem girls, let them know their deal. 

Wow, aren't those rather expensive? The only ones I found on eBay for a decent price (roughly the ~60 USD you paid) didn't seem very legit (at least they didn't accept returns, which is deplorably unreliable).
And just to mention, I don't trust CNET at all either. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by navii View Post

i think girls are hard to buy headphones for. first, girls are particular about style, second the headphones crumple the hair. girls are particular about those things.

 

i purchased a pair of headphones for an ex, she actually spotted them and pointed them out to me in the store... i only saw her wear them once.

 

girls are just too picky, buy some nice IEMs as they sound good and dont mess up a girl's style.

Amen to that. I'm unfortunately still waiting on her to let me know whether she wants cans or IEMs. I wanted to give her cans, but people here at head-fi had me start thinking otherwise, so now I'm just keeping tabs on both.
And about your ex, that's actually pretty sad to hear navii :p at least to me. I hate that. Hard.
All things aside, we're probably be seeing IEMs in the end.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post

All my female friends loved the Grado look (and sound); coincidentally, they also loved my Olympus E-P2 (and the built-in "Art Filters" - ie, Instagram in a cam that's supposedly the product of years trying to make images accurate). Maybe some people are closet hipsters - myself included, given I had a Grado and an E-P2 in a leather case.

I'm also a pretty big fan of Grado's looks (can only appreciate their sound from afar while reading reviews) and would have actually heavilly considered them were it not for the open sound.
Wouldn't shock me to call my girlfriend an at least semi- closet hipster ^^
 


Edited by Rosbife - 11/18/12 at 9:53am
post #22 of 104
If you can afford an E9, go for it! I'm also enamoured with the idea of a powerful desktop amp, and my Yamaha receiver is a bit too large for keeping in my bedroom, so... E9 or E09k would be perfect, and they are very powerful. I merely recommended the E11 because it's pretty powerful - enough for most headphones except those with really poor sensitivity and over 300 ohms impedance - but mostly because it's half the price of most "affordable" desktop amps.

Regarding the virtual surround, I think I'm starting to realize it works differently for each person. Luckily, there are YouTube Videos with the surround processing baked-in to the sound! I wish I had the know-how to make my own processed examples for you, but I have a link to a few examples. Click the head-Fi link and scroll down to see two CMSS-3D videos, and after those, go to the first thread post for a video example of Dolby Headphone!
http://www.head-fi.org/t/534479/mad-lust-envys-headphone-gaming-guide-updated-10-16-12-ps3-bd-playback-in-dolby-digital/8265#post_8774789
I play using Creative's newer THX TruStudio Pro surround processing, and my receiver has Yamaha's version called Silent Cinema. For me, CMSS-3D barely has front-back depth, Silent Cinema is a little distracting because of reverberations and echos (though the receiver has lots of adjustment options), Dolby Headphone works pretty well, but THX TruStudio Pro seems the most sophisticated, natural, and tweakable. NamelessPFG likes CMSS-3D best, and Mad Lust Envy favors Dolby Headphone. I would make a comparison video with sound replayed through each processing method if I could, but I don't know how.

A FiiO E10 has a pretty good DAC, but it only can play audio from a computer, they have had build quality issues, and I still believe it is far from being the biggest bottleneck of Hi-Fi performance. Music fidelity improves with better files and headphones, too. If you stick with the E9 or some other amp, you have the option of buying an upgraded DAC (like the ODAC) later if you feel it would be worth it. It's worth repeating that the E10 only has USB input.
Edited by Evshrug - 11/18/12 at 9:25am
post #23 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosbife View Post

Don't know about their sound, but they certainly aren't bulky, while closed, which is great. Thanks, added!

Well, I must admit, the fisrt thing she appears to consider about headphones is their looks. To me it's kinda sad, but hey, dem girls, let them know their deal. 
Wow, aren't those rather expensive? The only ones I found on eBay for a decent price (roughly the ~60 USD you paid) didn't seem very legit (at least they didn't accept returns, which is deplorably unreliable).

And just to mention, I don't trust CNET at all either.
I forget if I paid $60 or $70, but it honestly surprised me that I got them so cheap. I put in a bid thinking someone else would bid more, and I would get an email telling me how much they sold for, and... I accidentally bought a pair of headphones. Makes me sound like an addict. But the LPs were V-MODA's first full-sized cans, so they sell for much less than MSRP, and they're barely different-sounding from the LP2 (which is more like a "special edition"). I know I got lucky (and they are legitimate, used LPs), but I don't think it would be impossible for you to win a bid within your $60-$80 price range.

I found them to have a warm, bass heavy sound, but still possessed better fidelity than I expected from the mixed reviews on Head-Fi. They're not dry, analytical, detail monsters, but they ARE fun to listen to, and IMO don't look too flashy in person. They are also the most comfortable (and durable) closed headphones I've worn. They ended up being a great compliment to my AD700.

I think a big part of them looking acceptable is that the earcups don't bulge out too much from your ears... I've seen those Panasonic's in stores, they are cute but the cups stick out like half an eggshell. The rest between them is down to taste, I personally was surprised that the Phantom Chrome style I got wasn't shiny like wearing a bunch of diamonds on my head, but the "shields" chrome had a mirror-like finish that kinda picked up the color of whatever was around me.

Wanna see a nerd doing his first video review? http://youtube.com/watch?v=IDs3PDx8U7g
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosbife View Post

Amen to that. I'm unfortunately still waiting on her to let me know whether she wants cans or IEMs. I wanted to give her cans, but people here at head-fi had me start thinking otherwise, so now I'm just keeping tabs on both.

And about your ex, that's actually pretty sad to hear navii tongue.gif at least to me. I hate that. Hard.

All things aside, we're probably be seeing IEMs in the end.

I'm also a pretty big fan of Grado's looks (can only appreciate their sound from afar while reading reviews) and would have actually heavilly considered them were it not for the open sound.

Wouldn't shock me to call my girlfriend an at least semi- closet hipster ^^

Also sad to see someone asking for a gift but barely using it :/
My girl loves listening to musical theater and pretending she's living a Disney movie, and she also teaches Zumba. Since she was using the last pair of Koss despite loosing one of the foam earpads and damaging one driver by spilling coffee on it, it was a safe gift for me to buy her a new pair of the Koss and a pair of computer speakers that played louder and better than her dying boombox to play during Zumba.

IEMs are easy for fashion (and the best for noise isolation), but difficult for fit and comfort. I found eartips I like, but I didn't like any of Shure's mushroom-looking eartips, and if I have the wrong size tip on, my ears get sore after an hour. So, just be careful... If they're uncomfortable, she won't feel like using them often.

I bought my dad a pair of Grado SR60 for a Christmas/birthday present a few years ago. They're really adjustable, so they fit really nice, especially once the headband and your head adjust to eachother. The chrome posts and "It is what it is" design will either make you look like a dork, or, if you have confidence and the personality for it, you will look steam punk cool and unique. Meh. They do sound exciting though smily_headphones1.gif
Edited by Evshrug - 11/18/12 at 10:28am
post #24 of 104

These might work well for your GF. Posted in the deals thread:

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TWill87 View Post

Didn't see this posted yet but the Jaycar Pro Monitors are for sale again for $70 after shipping. These are the rebranded Brainwavz HM5 / Fischer FA-003.

 

http://jaycar.us/productView.asp?ID=AA2065&form=CAT2&SUBCATID=1015#4

 

Very good headphones for $70, comparable in class to your M50s. 

post #25 of 104
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post

If you can afford an E9, go for it!
I merely recommended the E11 because it's pretty powerful - enough for most headphones except those with really poor sensitivity and over 300 ohms impedance - but mostly because it's half the price of most "affordable" desktop amps.
Regarding the virtual surround, I think I'm starting to realize it works differently for each person. Luckily, there are YouTube Videos with the surround processing baked-in to the sound! Click the head-Fi link and scroll down to see two CMSS-3D videos, and after those, go to the first thread post for a video example of Dolby Headphone!
http://www.head-fi.org/t/534479/mad-lust-envys-headphone-gaming-guide-updated-10-16-12-ps3-bd-playback-in-dolby-digital/8265#post_8774789

A FiiO E10 has a pretty good DAC, but it only can play audio from a computer, they have had build quality issues, and I still believe it is far from being the biggest bottleneck of Hi-Fi performance. Music fidelity improves with better files and headphones, too. If you stick with the E9 or some other amp, you have the option of buying an upgraded DAC (like the ODAC) later if you feel it would be worth it. It's worth repeating that the E10 only has USB input.

 

I loved the E9 from first sight, and really considered getting it until I thought "but hey, if I don't need THAT much powerful of an amp for now, wouldn't the E10 suit me better with the DAC section?". Also, the difference between the E9 and E9K is just the E7 / E17 docking, right? Or is there more to it?
I also love the E11's concept, and would actually be getting it instead of the E9 / E10 IF I concluded the DAC on the E10 would do nothing for my SQ. All I hear is terrific things about the E11, and it'd still give me the occasional portability, not to mention saving 14 dollars / 40-60 dollars when compared to the E10/E9/E9k respectively. I do sound like I'm cheaping out on this, but I was just mentioning possible benefits :p. However, I wonder how bugged I'd be by the no-usage-while-charging feature... I know one thinks "I'll just charge it overnight", but meh, things never really go down that way do they?

As for the CMSS-3D, it was decent but not sure just how good. I mean, the difference between Enabled and Disabled was very noticeable, but still don't think it sounded that good when enabled. Rear simulation was pretty good, but side simulations were rather bad, and the diagonals ranged from good to terrible. Front simulation was mediocre.
5.1 / 7.1 DH was actually pretty good. Telling apart rear from front still isn't crystal clear, but it was certainly a big difference. Kind of gets me edgy to try them ^^ BUT I have a huge question... which is:
   Isn't this digital sound processing? Isn't it just software doing this? If so, why would you need to "buy" hardware to do the processing, can't you get it done with downloadable software of some sort? I'm confused oO

Lastly, by "A FiiO E10 has a pretty good DAC", what exactly do you mean? I know you're saying "pretty good for the price", and sorry to drag the subject on and on, but is it still good enough to make a noticeable difference? I'm not really looking for "oh, after 3 hours of listening I did indeed note a subtle increase in the clarity between 1200 and 1500 HZ", I'm not really in that level and don't know if I'll ever be. Right now, I'm just looking for cheap reproductions of that SQ bump you get going from your stock apple buds into your first good set of cans/IEMs. Obviously it shouldn't be that huge of a bump but it'd have to be substantial. These entry level FiiO products seemed ideal from reviews, but if in the end we'd just be looking at 1-5% improvement, probably not worth it for me :)
On the other hand, the build quality issues (loose jack mainly) do bug me. Also, I don't think I'll be getting "good quality music files" in a near future, as that just doesn't "sound" like "me", however dumb that may sound. Might change, but for now I am not considering that, just because of how troublesome it can get (I don't know much about this and, again, might be saying just about the dumbest thing I've ever said, but that's the impression I get). The ODAC is one you have to assemble, right? Would that be a huge improvement over the DAC in the E10, or would it just be making one's entry into the roads of diminishing returns? ODAC + E9 do sound like a heavenly combo, but I'd be looking at a good 200 USD :p

Thanks for the great input btw!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post


I forget if I paid $60 or $70, but it honestly surprised me that I got them so cheap. I put in a bid thinking someone else would bid more, and I would get an email telling me how much they sold for, and... I accidentally bought a pair of headphones. Makes me sound like an addict. But the LPs were V-MODA's first full-sized cans, so they sell for much less than MSRP, and they're barely different-sounding from the LP2 (which is more like a "special edition"). I know I got lucky (and they are legitimate, used LPs), but I don't think it would be impossible for you to win a bid within your $60-$80 price range.
I found them to have a warm, bass heavy sound, but still possessed better fidelity than I expected from the mixed reviews on Head-Fi. They're not dry, analytical, detail monsters, but they ARE fun to listen to, and IMO don't look too flashy in person. They are also the most comfortable (and durable) closed headphones I've worn. They ended up being a great compliment to my AD700.
I think a big part of them looking acceptable is that the earcups don't bulge out too much from your ears... I've seen those Panasonic's in stores, they are cute but the cups stick out like half an eggshell. The rest between them is down to taste, I personally was surprised that the Phantom Chrome style I got wasn't shiny like wearing a bunch of diamonds on my head, but the "shields" chrome had a mirror-like finish that kinda picked up the color of whatever was around me.
Wanna see a nerd doing his first video review? http://youtube.com/watch?v=IDs3PDx8U7g
Also sad to see someone asking for a gift but barely using it :/
My girl loves listening to musical theater and pretending she's living a Disney movie, and she also teaches Zumba. Since she was using the last pair of Koss despite loosing one of the foam earpads and damaging one driver by spilling coffee on it, it was a safe gift for me to buy her a new pair of the Koss and a pair of computer speakers that played louder and better than her dying boombox to play during Zumba.
IEMs are easy for fashion (and the best for noise isolation), but difficult for fit and comfort. I found eartips I like, but I didn't like any of Shure's mushroom-looking eartips, and if I have the wrong size tip on, my ears get sore after an hour. So, just be careful... If they're uncomfortable, she won't feel like using them often.
I bought my dad a pair of Grado SR60 for a Christmas/birthday present a few years ago. They're really adjustable, so they fit really nice, especially once the headband and your head adjust to eachother. The chrome posts and "It is what it is" design will either make you look like a dork, or, if you have confidence and the personality for it, you will look steam punk cool and unique. Meh. They do sound exciting though smily_headphones1.gif

 

Thanks for the Youtube review :P I bet the V-Modas sound good, but I am more than certain my girl wouldn't really give the mirrors in those cups a chance! 
Also, the SR60i have always seemed like an amazing gift - affordable, stylish and reportedly good. It actually was my first idea. But... would she actually appreciate them? I think not :P (plus the open sound is more likely than not to be out of the picture here).
She does have a bit of an issue with "intrusive" IEMs, but after trying out my Sennheisers with the smallest tips, she said it was okay.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

These might work well for your GF. Posted in the deals thread:

http://jaycar.us/productView.asp?ID=AA2065&form=CAT2&SUBCATID=1015#4

Very good headphones for $70, comparable in class to your M50s. 

Wow. Aren't those hugely well-reputed, $120-140 cans? I'm pretty ignorant when it comes to audio, but still a huge forum lurker and came across those names a good number of times. And from the times I did check them on Amazon/etc, they often were well over a hundred bucks. I only remember one con, which was some sort of echo, but it was rarely mentioned so I guess fat chance it'd be a deal breaker. Why are they that cheap?

post #26 of 104
Thread Starter 

I look back at my reply posts, and after seeing their final size, I sincerely doubt anyone in their right mind would read them.

post #27 of 104

I was going to take the monoprice 8323/remove the components and spray can it pink then clearcoat it. They're perfect for library/home usage. 

post #28 of 104
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by parnold View Post

I was going to take the monoprice 8323/remove the components and spray can it pink then clearcoat it. They're perfect for library/home usage. 

They do seem quite good value, added. Not sure the bulk will pass QC though :)

post #29 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosbife View Post

Wow. Aren't those hugely well-reputed, $120-140 cans? I'm pretty ignorant when it comes to audio, but still a huge forum lurker and came across those names a good number of times. And from the times I did check them on Amazon/etc, they often were well over a hundred bucks. I only remember one con, which was some sort of echo, but it was rarely mentioned so I guess fat chance it'd be a deal breaker. Why are they that cheap?

 

Yep. It's a great deal. Go research the main Brainwavz HM5 and main Fischer FA-003 threads and you'll find out all three are identical, and you'll see discussion of the Jaycar version. What's happening is that some of the headphones and IEMs on the market are being designed and manufactured by specific Chinese factories that then market them to vendors and add the vendor branding. Brainwavz and Fischer have some other identical models. Seems like Jaycar must just be selling theirs with little markup. Really let's you know how much Brainwavz and Fischer are paying for theirs. 

post #30 of 104
I read long replies. Seems only fair, as I write them too. Actually, more to read = more time spent on a hobby. God forbid people should try reading books for fun :O
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosbife View Post

I loved the E9 from first sight, and really considered getting it until I thought "but hey, if I don't need THAT much powerful of an amp for now, wouldn't the E10 suit me better with the DAC section?". Also, the difference between the E9 and E9K is just the E7 / E17 docking, right? Or is there more to it?

No, that's basically it. They did some other small changes too, like remove the smaller 3.5mm jack that sounded inferior to the bigger headphone jack (1/4 inch here, uh... 6.5 or 6.8mm jack in metric? The one you see for guitars and on the front of home receivers!), so you have to (get to?) use the adapters that come with higher-end headphones (or found really cheap at an electronics store), but overall they are basically the same and sound identical.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosbife View Post

I also love the E11's concept, and would actually be getting it instead of the E9 / E10 IF I concluded the DAC on the E10 would do nothing for my SQ. All I hear is terrific things about the E11, and it'd still give me the occasional portability, not to mention saving 14 dollars / 40-60 dollars when compared to the E10/E9/E9k respectively. I do sound like I'm cheaping out on this, but I was just mentioning possible benefits tongue.gif. However, I wonder how bugged I'd be by the no-usage-while-charging feature... I know one thinks "I'll just charge it overnight", but meh, things never really go down that way do they?

Well, some resellers bundle the E11 with a spare battery. I'd rather have two batteries, and cleaner sound, than have funny noise if you use it while charging and a permenant built-in battery. What happens when the battery is old and can't recharge anymore? FWIR you get like 15-18 hours of battery power, more than enough for a few days average listening, and all batteries need charged sometime. Just swap to the spare and recharge the dead one.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosbife View Post

As for the CMSS-3D, it was decent but not sure just how good. I mean, the difference between Enabled and Disabled was very noticeable, but still don't think it sounded that good when enabled. Rear simulation was pretty good, but side simulations were rather bad, and the diagonals ranged from good to terrible. Front simulation was mediocre.

5.1 / 7.1 DH was actually pretty good. Telling apart rear from front still isn't crystal clear, but it was certainly a big difference. Kind of gets me edgy to try them ^^ BUT I have a huge question... which is:

   Isn't this digital sound processing? Isn't it just software doing this? If so, why would you need to "buy" hardware to do the processing, can't you get it done with downloadable software of some sort? I'm confused oO

Like I said, I found that CMSS-3D had the least believable processing, and I prefer Recon3D's method. But yes, software. I've thought the same thing, and you CAN get a Dolby Headphone plug-in for Foobar, but that will only work for videos and the rare surround-sound music (Flaming lips!). I think part of the deal of dedicated hardware is that it can be designed specifically for audio, amping, DAC conversion (not software), analogue processing, and not taking away system resources from other tasks. Sort of like how a graphics card can perform better than built-in graphics from the same tech generation.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosbife View Post

Lastly, by "A FiiO E10 has a pretty good DAC", what exactly do you mean? I know you're saying "pretty good for the price", and sorry to drag the subject on and on, but is it still good enough to make a noticeable difference? I'm not really looking for "oh, after 3 hours of listening I did indeed note a subtle increase in the clarity between 1200 and 1500 HZ", I'm not really in that level and don't know if I'll ever be. Right now, I'm just looking for cheap reproductions of that SQ bump you get going from your stock apple buds into your first good set of cans/IEMs. Obviously it shouldn't be that huge of a bump but it'd have to be substantial. These entry level FiiO products seemed ideal from reviews, but if in the end we'd just be looking at 1-5% improvement, probably not worth it for me smily_headphones1.gif

On the other hand, the build quality issues (loose jack mainly) do bug me. Also, I don't think I'll be getting "good quality music files" in a near future, as that just doesn't "sound" like "me", however dumb that may sound. Might change, but for now I am not considering that, just because of how troublesome it can get (I don't know much about this and, again, might be saying just about the dumbest thing I've ever said, but that's the impression I get). The ODAC is one you have to assemble, right? Would that be a huge improvement over the DAC in the E10, or would it just be making one's entry into the roads of diminishing returns? ODAC + E9 do sound like a heavenly combo, but I'd be looking at a good 200 USD tongue.gif

I don't think being careful about not spending more money for no benefit is a bad thing. At the same time, if you're going to do something, do it right instead of throwing money at something not good enough. For the headphones and budget for new purchases you have, an E9 would not really provide technical benefit over the much cheaper E11, unless you foresee yourself only using difficult-to-drive headphones in your near future.

I used to get very close tuning my violin from memory, but I can't tell you this sound is that Hz frequency. Going between the up-spec DAC built into my receiver and the DAC of my iPod (line-out signal amped by the analogue amping section of the same receiver) I could barely hear a difference... Some, but not $200 worth. So I just wouldn't bother, my life is too short (and income too low) to try and eek out another 2% difference. A Better, more powerful amp was like a 10% difference, but it checked off a lot of things I value more than how much change there was, I was having more fun and wanted to rediscover my whole library. The difference it made in my car was REALLY dramatic, I don't like to go back.

Btw, people build and sell the ODAC, in fact DACs in general are complicated beyond the abilities of hand-assembly. They're $150 in the USA.

By better music files, I mean like even 256kbps AAC files, the iTunes music store standard, seem to have more life and sweetness than 128kbps or even 196kbps MP3 files. I'm picky about purchases, if I want to own a song I buy it on iTunes, if I LOVE 4-5 songs from an album and listen to it often, I buy the CD. My experience with music from bit-torrents was usually low-fidelity MP3 files, and usually they were encoded funny with strange artifacts too. I don't know how rampant music piracy is anymore, when I started to like music I didn't even bother with trying to get it for free (unless a studio put together free samples).
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosbife View Post

Thanks for the great input btw!

Thanks for the Youtube review :P I bet the V-Modas sound good, but I am more than certain my girl wouldn't really give the mirrors in those cups a chance! 

Also, the SR60i have always seemed like an amazing gift - affordable, stylish and reportedly good. It actually was my first idea. But... would she actually appreciate them? I think not :P (plus the open sound is more likely than not to be out of the picture here).

Grados are only stylish in a sort of 1920's radio-operator geek retro way, IMO. I like 'em. I think it would be rare chance to see a girl wearing them. They're not library study headphones either. I might've bought a $15 pair of colored, matte V-MODA shields in place of the chrome, but sadly I have not been able to find my Crossfade LPs for like 3 months. My mom tends to turn the things I love for recreation into punishment, so I probably hid them, too well.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosbife View Post

She does have a bit of an issue with "intrusive" IEMs, but after trying out my Sennheisers with the smallest tips, she said it was okay.
Wow. Aren't those hugely well-reputed, $120-140 cans? I'm pretty ignorant when it comes to audio, but still a huge forum lurker and came across those names a good number of times. And from the times I did check them on Amazon/etc, they often were well over a hundred bucks. I only remember one con, which was some sort of echo, but it was rarely mentioned so I guess fat chance it'd be a deal breaker. Why are they that cheap?

I was afraid of comfort issues... Canalphones can be comfortable, but they intrude deeply as earplugs (that's why they block noise so well). You may just come full-circle and go for a known thing- canalbuds like the Sennheisers you have.
Are these Brainwavez clones closed headphones? Look ok? Then they may work.

On a personal note, I'm so sad. My $200 tube hybrid amp I have been waiting for did indeed arrive today, but the tube got smashed in the mail. Pulverized. There are sand-like particles on my smooth glass tabletop that I can't move by scraping the edge of a piece of paper over them. So, I will have to wait like ANOTHER week to hear it. What was originally a summer reward for a job well done has almost turned into a Christmas present for myself.

T_T
Edited by Evshrug - 11/20/12 at 5:38pm
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphones (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphones (full-size) › What would you gift your girlfriend?