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General question about headphones and trying them out.

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

Hiya! First post here, so if this has been covered I do apologize. If it has, please just drop a link and I will follow to the link. I just had no idea how to word this for a search.


About a year and a half ago I tried out some Bose noise canceling headphones, and this caused me to decide I needed some decent headphones. So shortly after that I bought a pair of Sony noise canceling headphones. They were the ones from Sam's Club (model number I am unsure of) and I liked them enough to know I wanted to step it up from there. Seriously, one listen of the Yes album Fragile and I was sold. 


For Christmas my wife bought me a pair of Sennheiser HD 280 pro. I went that route due to great reviews. I soon came to find out that there is a definite "love em/hate em" camp around them. Personally, I like them a lot, but I do agree with the complaints about how they do start to hurt after a bit of time wearing them. That and my ears start to sweat. Yuck. So I decided to start looking around at what else is out there. Considering I do like the Sennheisers, I feel I can take my time and save some pennies. 


So here is the real question. How does one go about testing headphones? I stopped in Best Buy last night and they had even more than before set up for testing. It appears that Ludacris has jumped on the Dre bandwagon and now has his own "Beats" type of headphone. But they also had plain Monster phones (which from reading this site informed me that Monster is who really makes Beats), Harmon, Sony, Sennheiser, Bose, and a couple of others. In all honesty, aside from the Bose, none of them sounded anywhere near as good as my HD280s. I can only assume that this is due to nobody at Best Buy having clue one as to how to help these things sound better. I admit the Bose sound nice, but as they are noise canceling, I hate them. But I just know that they are NOT the best out there, and I can only assume there is much better than what I have. How does one go about finding out which ones are right for you, without having to buy and  return?

post #2 of 3
You'll find most in-store headphones like bestbuy is all still mainstream stuff, the variety they offer is for everyday consumers and basically not very good if wanting to go to the next level. I started out doing the buy and try from my local mall, after several purchases I knew there had to be more, that's when I found Head-Fi. So you're at the right place.

As you said Senheiser 280pro is probably the best they offer before you start paying for a name only. Don't be fooled by the celebrity headphones because most of them sound down right awful and you're buying a brand name only. Or.. put in another way you can get a lot better for that price. What ever you do don't buy bestbuys most expensive headphone thinking you're getting the best because that's far from the truth.

I'm going to give this a bump for you, and it would be good if you can also make a thread in the Fullsize headphone section.


The guy's over there can help you further on good headphones, though quickly I set a budget when I started, then bought and sold gear that was popular,(that way it sells easily) Usually the stuff that's popular is what's worth trying anyway. I make a small loss on the selling and continued that routine over and over. (buy/try/sell) We have a buy/sell/trade section here so we all help out and usually most people give good prices, much better than dealing instore or other online sites.


Also, find out what kind of sound you like, because it's rather important for the guy's to suggest something, set a budget, etc....

Edited by H20Fidelity - 12/14/12 at 9:13pm
post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 

Wonderful! Thank you for the great reply!


So, are these Sennheiser 280s considered full size, or are they portables? I will admit to confusion over that, and before I asked the question I did so a search to see what was being discussed here. I guess I see them as portable because I do take them with me, but I guess that is possible with any headphone. I think I might need a brush up on terms. 


I have seen many complaints about the Beats headphones, so I stay away of them. I tried them out last year, and was not impressed. It is nice to know, though, that the phones in BB are not what are recommended, and are a far cry from what is used, as that means my ears are not faulty. 


Thanks again, and I will consider a new post in the other section. 

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