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Nooby has some questions

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I'm new to the audio world.

I purchased a pair of turtle beach px21 for gaming a few years ago. Awful investment. They are simply terrible aside from the good microphone on them. I was also tired of my earbuds breaking so I bought a pair of klipsch image s4 earphones. They are great.

But now that my turtle beach px21 have finally kicked the bucket I am interested in buying a pair of headphones for both gaming and music. My questions are:
What specifications should I look for? I am absolutely clueless as to what it is that makes a good pair of headphones. I understand and that the range of frequency deals with the range of sounds the headphones can produce but that is it.
Should I buy closed or open phones, and what is the diff?
How will I be able to tell if a pair of headphones are able to zero in on where a sound comes from without using them? Basically what is it about headphones that would allow me to know exactly where a gun was dropped from and zero in on it?
I also plan to use the headphones for music.

I was told sennheiser hd 598 are great. What is your opinion on them?

$300 is the most I am willing to spend. Since this is my first real pair of phones I'm buying I'd like to buy a good pair that simply perform the absolute best for the $300 price range.
post #2 of 9
Thread Starter 
I forgot to mention. The music I listen to is mostly post-hardcore and metal.

The games I play range greatly, from cs 1.6 to world of Warcraft.

I prefer the headphones to NOT have a microphone as I am buying a clip on mic.
post #3 of 9

Alright well welcome to headfi.  First of all please forgive my awful writing.

Ok, onward to the answers.  So the difference between open and closed is that open leeks sound on purpose and won't doesn't have as good isolation as closed.  The benefit to that though is that it creates a a larger soundstage.  Ok, so soundstage is where the instruments seem to be coming from different parts of the room.  Imaging is where each instrument is placed.  Now this will be how you can tell where the sound is coming from.  So if you are in a loud room or somewhere where you don't want to disturb someone closed is probably better, otherwise I like open.  

So, what exactly do you want to look for in a headphone.  Build quality, sound quality etc... but the main thing is does it sound good to you? When you put on a pair of headphones you want to think man these sound good.  Everyone will recommend headphones but ultimately its your opinion that matters.

A couple more things.  Different headphones have different sound signatures.  Some can be more bassy or have better treble or even be neutral.  I don't know what you like but I can make a couple recommendations. The last thing I want to say though is that a lot of headphones in that price range will benefit greatly from an amp and source. But for now here are a couple headphones that are great in that price range.


My personal favorite: Maddogs by Mr. Speakers (modded Fostex T50RP, closed headphone)

Beyerdynamic DT770 (bassy, closed headphone) or DT880 (more neutral, semi-open headphone) [These come in 3 different versions 80Ohm, 250Ohm and 600Ohm.  I suggest 250Ohm]

AKG Q701,K701,K702 (they all sound really similar if not the same, all open)


P.S. the HD598 is a good headphone but I like the ones above a bit better

post #4 of 9

Do you need open or closed headphones? You must know, the best headphones for gaming aren't bass heavy, but light on bass.


Do you have a sound card, else you should also get a sound card.


You can't know if a headphone is good for gaming judging by specs. Actually, you almost can't know anything based on specs.


Also, refer to MLE's gaming guide: http://www.head-fi.org/t/534479/mad-lust-envys-headphone-gaming-guide-updated-5-17-13-skullcandy-plyr-1-added


If closed: Soundmagic HP100.


If open: Sennheiser hd598, k701, ad700/900


Then get a sound card for the rest of the money

post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Any more?
post #6 of 9

Is noise a problem in your room? Can you annoy other people with sound leaking?

post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
The only noise would be my computer tower but it's quiet enough for other noise to drown it out.
post #8 of 9

Then I see no reason not to go for open headphones unless you really want that extra bass most closed headphones in that price range has.

post #9 of 9

Gonna throw in my .02


Sennheiser (I like HD555/HD595/HD600/HD580, in that order)

Soundcard (I don't know enough about soundcards to recommend one, but I am sure that one will drive the hd555/hd595 with NO problem, the 580/600 is a bit harder to drive. You definitely want to go the soundcard route for gaming, if you were only worried about audio or wanted a portable device or needed something modular, I would recommend a Fiio E17).


I guess my suggestion depends on if the 300 is your overall budget or just your headphone budget.

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