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Open vs. Closed headphones (a moved question from my original thread)

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

My only experience of ownership going open is with Grado 60s, I bought them from the store on the block that the restaurant the 'coffee shop' was located, and opened them up with a friend at an outside table.  These were the first top headphones I could afford (it was the 1980s) and I remember, probably 1988, I was playing Metallica, the song was 'One', and I was on the subway, around morning rush hour at wall street.  I was going home after a long night.  I remember everyone telling me to turn it down.  I remember one person at the end saying as I read his lips, "Metallica rocks.'

 

My dad still has some wooden grados, he is 76 year old, I think they are mine in his will in another 20 years.

 

This is my problem with open headphones.  

 

Since my experiences, I have shunned going open, and now go closed or in-ear, however, in my last thread, it seems open headphones are the true giants. 

 

I still need to not have loudspeakers on my head, but I ask, is tech now so advanced that it will not leak as much as my old grados?

 

I have listened to a friend's BEATS, and I can tell you I heard everything he did.

 

If I did go open Senn 800s, would I be discrete or would everyone around me know i am now listening to Amy Lee.

 

 

This is added and not part of my original question, but I would still like to know)

 

 

How do people get to test out headphones and gear, I'm just a normal guy?  I would love to review and test the Monte Blanc E12 Fiio headphone amp but I cannot post my address on a website.  I've even added Fiio cords to my TF10s and there are pics on head-fi (okay, shameless request if they see this, but I'm being honest, I don't know how it works).  Is there a place headphone people go to so they can review gear for free?

post #2 of 6

Higher end headphones need a lot of power to drive them, which is why there meant for at home listening.  I don't know of any portable amps that can properly power a pair of HE-6 or an HD-800.   You typically need a big and poweful amp plugged into a wall outlet to do the job.  People generally don't care if the sound leaks because they use them at home, and most audiophiles prefer the sound of an open headphone rather than a closed one.


Edited by MadMolly - 2/17/13 at 1:47pm
post #3 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by ucrime View Post

My only experience of ownership going open is with Grado 60s, I bought them from the store on the block that the restaurant the 'coffee shop' was located, and opened them up with a friend at an outside table.  These were the first top headphones I could afford (it was the 1980s) and I remember, probably 1988, I was playing Metallica, the song was 'One', and I was on the subway, around morning rush hour at wall street.  I was going home after a long night.  I remember everyone telling me to turn it down.  I remember one person at the end saying as I read his lips, "Metallica rocks.'

My dad still has some wooden grados, he is 76 year old, I think they are mine in his will in another 20 years.

This is my problem with open headphones.  

Since my experiences, I have shunned going open, and now go closed or in-ear, however, in my last thread, it seems open headphones are the true giants. 

I still need to not have loudspeakers on my head, but I ask, is tech now so advanced that it will not leak as much as my old grados?

Open means leakage and no isolation - that won't change over time. If you're using headphones for mobile use, open headphones are a bad choice. If you're at home, it's likely a better pick (as open headphones are likely to give you better performance). It's a trade-off basically.

Grados are a bad choice for mobile use imho, as they don't provide isolation.
Quote:
I have listened to a friend's BEATS, and I can tell you I heard everything he did.

Beats leak pretty bad ime. Not all closed headphones are that bad though. Look at closed cans from Koss, Ultrasone, Beyerdynamic, Bose, and Audio-Technica as better examples.
Quote:
If I did go open Senn 800s, would I be discrete or would everyone around me know i am now listening to Amy Lee.

Yep. I'd also not suggest $1500 open cans for mobile use.
Quote:
How do people get to test out headphones and gear, I'm just a normal guy?  I would love to review and test the Monte Blanc E12 Fiio headphone amp but I cannot post my address on a website.  I've even added Fiio cords to my TF10s and there are pics on head-fi (okay, shameless request if they see this, but I'm being honest, I don't know how it works).  Is there a place headphone people go to so they can review gear for free?

The majority of reviewers either start out reviewing equipment they've personally paid for, or as professional journalists who work on covering the audio industry.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MadMolly View Post

Higher end headphones need a lot of power to drive them

While I agree 100% with your specific examples, I want to add that not *all* high end headphones are hard to drive.
post #4 of 6

What is actually considered a high end headphone ?

 

$1000 and up ?

post #5 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by whirlwind View Post

What is actually considered a high end headphone ?

$1000 and up ?

That's another long-running debate, and I think it depends on who you ask, and where you ask them. Personally I think "high end" should be synonymous with "high performance" (but then how do you qualify that...) as opposed to "high price" - price is a bad indicator of anything but price, but I've also seen this entire discussion get very nasty, very heated, and cause a lot of hurt feelings over the years.
Edited by obobskivich - 2/17/13 at 6:29pm
post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post


That's another long-running debate, and I think it depends on who you ask, and where you ask them. Personally I think "high end" should be synonymous with "high performance" (but then how do you qualify that...) as opposed to "high price" - price is a bad indicator of anything but price, but I've also seen this entire discussion get very nasty, very heated, and cause a lot of hurt feelings over the years.

Yeah, I see what you mean.......I was just thinking dollar amount....I guess you can look at that different ways.

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