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Help in choosing next headphones

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 



This is my first post here so please bear with me if I appear noobish.


I have just broken my last pair of Sony MDR-XB700 headphones, which I have enjoyed somewhat for the past few years and have given me lengthy sessions of joy.  I though it would be about time that I maybe went to the next level of quality sounding headphones and headphones is an audio item I know nothing about and up until now have only gone by shop pricing being my level of choice.


There appears to be many names I have never even heard of on here that shows my noobness and are obviously of better quality than that which I have had before looking at reviews etc. So if I tell you my requirements, I am hoping someone can help me narrow down my search, bearing in mind that i don't have any high street specialists near me to try them out, I am going to have to order online and hope for the best.


Basically they are used everyday for at least 10 hours on both train journeys and in office so they need to not have the usyal crappy sound that sounds louder outside of the headphones than what they do to listener ( like those apple earbud ones you get with the phones! ). They must not be in your ear type as I can never find any comfort in those and have tried so many, they just don't suit me, and I really don't care what they look like or how big they are, as they will be either on my head or in a very big bag I use for work. I love listening to all genre of music depending on what mood I'm in, from Classical to Blues, Rock to club anthems and a lot of D&B and heavy bass podcasts etc so emphasis on the bass is a must but I don't want it to make the rest of the sound bad quality.  Budget is up to £300 although I am happy to spend less now that I can move away from the high street store prices and get more professional guidance from the users here.


Many thanks in advance for your help.

post #2 of 10

For your use: get something closed (for isolation) and circumaural (best comfort).

Just received Sony's MDR-1R myself and they may suit you, but other likely contenders would include Beyer Dynamic's DT770. It's a very decent headphone already and I'm hearing good reports about the Limited Edition version too.


Definitely some to check out, and then there are tons of others that will probably end up in your thread too.

Edited by paaj - 3/6/13 at 4:50am
post #3 of 10

Headphones being open doesn't mean they're bad quality. Most of the good ones are open. But it looks like you want closed headphones, and the resonance you get from them being closed will help the bass for you as well. I'd suggest the Ultrasone Pro 900's. I've heard both these and the Sony XB700's, and these are much clearer and more detailed. They're also one of the better headphones you can get that have a ton of bass if that's what you're looking for. Plus, they come with a carrying case you can store them in and they've been discounted quite a bit recently.


The Beyerdynamic DT770-80's are also good at a lower price. They're more comfortable and probably more durable, but they don't have as much bass and are more laid back. Most people, including me, see them as bass emphasized, but if you're coming off the XB700's you'll think they have very little bass.

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thank you for your suggestions, out of those I think I am leaning towards the Ultrasone 900s.  Although they appear to match my requirements, I've been reading some very mixed reviews on these and the lack of mid range could be a problem due the the range of genres I listen to, even though D&B will be the main music I listen to at work. I guess I should just order them and see how I get on, but the Hifiman HE400 has since also caught my eye. confused.gif


The price difference is £100 though, Was planning on going for an FiiO E17 Amp to pair up with the Ultrasone 900s, but if I change that for the HE400s then I would have to wait to buy the Amp.  Bearing in mind I will be using mainly my iPhone 4s or iPod as source any advise would be much appreciated - I have both pages up now ready for purchasing wink.gif

post #5 of 10

The thing about the Ultrasone 900s is they have a unique sound that's hit or miss so that's why you see so many reviews being polar opposites.


The Hifiman HE-400s are open headphones and will leak sound so I don't think it'd suit your purposes especially with them being used at work and on the train.

post #6 of 10

If one frequency gets boosted, the others will naturally sound recessed. A lot of people give the Pro 900's bad reviews because they don't like such a bass boosted sound signature. Don't force yourself to like what other people do; if you like more bass, feel free to get a bass heavy headphone. You will probably grow to appreciate more neutral sound signatures as you get more into the hobby, as many of us have, but changing preferences are part of the fun of an audiophile's journey.

post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks again for the advice guys. Yes you are quite right, I definitely need closed due to listening on the move and I like my music loud but I am constantly asking Poeple on the train if they can hear my music as I am a considerate listener smily_headphones1.gif

I am definitely going for the ultrasones. My journey through music has been a strange one over the decades and am almost back to my roots again, but had taught me that all music is good for somebody biggrin.gif

I am a AVphile, although more Visual than Audio and have very hi tech equipment in the home, but headphones is the one area I have never explored. Eventually I'd like to get to the same level of personal audio that I have done with my home AV setup, and guess these fun ultrasones and portable amp is my starting point.

Look forward to further discussions in the future, off to make my purchase now biggrin.gif

Thanks once again.
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 

Well the Ultrasones Pro 900s have just turned up and I am loving them.  Am only listening to a podcase on my iPhone at the moment but the detail compared to the XB700s is immense!! My FiiO E17 should be arriving today also so can't wait to get them plugged into that.  I have noticed a decrease in volume when running straight from the iPhone compared to teh XB700s, but nothing major and the quality far outweighs this, plus will be sorted once I drive them with the amp.


Overall, very pleased and thanks for helping me with your advise.:D

post #9 of 10

Glad to hear you like them!

post #10 of 10

If your iPhone will not give the same volume you can turn it up, if that's not possible it is way too loud to be healty ;)

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