I know, the title is somewhat of a shocker, but hear me out.
I joined Head-Fi somewhat by accident. Back in 2009, I was the average sheep-person when it came to audio. I bought a pair of Skullcandy Hesh right when they came out, and thought they sounded awesome (compared to the iPod headphones I was coming from.) A few months later, I bought a pair of Panasonic RPHTX7s (which I still own) as a prop for a halloween costume, and when I plugged them into my iPod, I was shocked by what came out. They destroyed the Hesh in basically every way I could think of. I sold the Hesh to a friend, and bumped the RPHTX7 happily for several months.
One day, I walked into the brand new Windows store that opened up at my local mall to go check out this newfangled XBOX Kinect. Hanging on a rack next to one of the PCs was one of the sexiest headphones I had ever seen, the V-Moda M80. I played a few songs on it, and it was leaps and bounds beyond the RPHTX7s around my neck. While the $230 price was a bit of a sticker shock to me, I decided that their god-like sound combined with stunning good looks and military level durability made them worth it.
When I got home, I looked up V-Moda on Facebook, and saw a link to Head-Fi. After learning to navigate the forums, I was astounded at the amount of different headphones on the market, the crazy prices that people paid for these headphones, and all of the ways that amplifiers, digital-to-analog converters, audio formats and even cables affect the sound of a pair of headphones. It was then that I became a part of the Head-Fi community.
Head-Fi became part of my daily routine, browsing all of the reviews, press releases and for sale forums. As some of you know, I started saving up money in a jar with hopes of purchasing the $2000 Fostex TH900, which I thought would bring me to audio nirvana.
A few weeks ago, I had a reality check. I had nearly $800 in my TH900 fund and was spending much of my free time reading all of the reviews on Head-Fi. Then, to my good fortune, I won a pair of V-Moda M100s in a giveaway.
When I put them on the for the first time, I decided to listen to Daft Punk's "Contact."
I felt as if the music was ALIVE.
The sound coming from these headphones utterly astounded me, and even after several weeks of ownership, they still do. I love everything about them.
Yesterday, I was at Best Buy to get a case for my iPhone. I noticed the high-end audio "Magnolia" section of the store, and decided to have a look. They had the Sennheiser HD700 on display, and recognizing them from Head-Fi, I decided to have a listen. If the V-Modas sounded alive then these sounded dead. Sure, by a "technical" standpoint they were amazing, but I didn't feel as if I wanted to sing out loud, dance, bop my head or otherwise get lost in my music.
I went home and seriously took a look at myself. Do I really need to keep chasing the dragon of high-end audio? My M100s sound like evreything that has been missing in my headphones.
I've decided that there are much better things that $800 (or eventually, $2000) can be spent on. Dates with my girlfriend, paintballing with my wolfpack, and on new music that I discover every day. While I can see why other people continue to pursue "the perfect headphone," My pursuit ends here.
I do not see myself buying a new pair of headphones in the forseable future, unless the M100s break after the warranty wears out. As a matter of fact, the only audio related purchase I can see myself making in the future is an iPod Classic to hold my entire music collection.
As for now, I can be found browsing the music-related threads of Head-Fi, Reddit and 4Chan.