Why aren't they good for rap?
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My guess is the level of bass and sub-bass that would be required to accurately reproduce rap. The Sennheiser sound for the headphones being discussed will just work better with other genres of music. For rap, consider another headphone that can really delivery on the low end - and deliver it very well.
Spot on.. Great points...
OP like someone mentioned, get the HE-400 for rap/hip-hop. It's about $400 though so $50 above your budget but it really is perfect for hip hop. Excellent bass, detailed, does male vocals really well, has that fast 'speaker-like' ortho presentation... all in all a steal for the money.
It even does EDM really well which a lot of rappers seem to feature in these days.
I would probably consider another set of headphones, such as the Ultrasone pro 900 which you can find for under $350 online but even cheaper used. These are also closed and have some isolation which make them portable although I would recommend amping them.
Denon D2000 or Beyerdynamic DT770 (32 ohm or 80 ohm). Done. Both scale well with better amps down the road.
In case you were considering IEMs: Sennheiser IE8/IE80, Westone 3/UM3X, UE Triple.fi 10 (borderline).
Headphones/IEMs I would not recommend for these genres:
-Sennheiser HD650 (great midbass, but likely would not have enough sub-bass for your taste)
-AKG K701/702 (Don't even consider it).
Skip out the DT770 variants all together and get the DT990 250ohm or 600ohm Prem (amp recommended). The DT990 all together is more refined and better in every sound aspect than the it's sibling the DT770.
+1 on calipilots "Not recommended" list.
Higher impedance means less sensitivity, and thus less reactiveness if you use a low power source (such as a smartphone).
Partly true but there are 300ohms headphones and has sensitivity close to 100dB