Hello! Still having trouble trying to decide on a good set of headphones for my gaming/music. Both are equally important to me. I have a budget of about 300 for the phones, so unfortunately that pretty much excludes the AKG K702 Annies, despite the fact that they were recommended to me twice on Mad Lust Envy's thread.
What I'd like from my phones:
- Comfortable for 6hrs+, can't fatigue jaw
- Immersive environmental experience, including ambient "white noise" in games (urban and natural noises like traffic, footfall, flowing water, etc). I play on PC.
- Treats male and female vocals exceptionally (music, game dialogue)
- Robust electronic sound (the "right" amount of bass is fine, esp. since the cans are open)
- Treats resonance well (love violin/cello)
- Many of my tracks are dark and complicated; inversely many are bubbly, bright, or soothing and ambient - I need something balanced enough that it treats most genres well
- Perhaps most importantly, I need something that does NOT muddy the layers of a track... I love being able to separate the layers, listen to the individual signature of each instrument, to be able to mentally slide through the tiers of a soundscape, so to speak. I also listen to some pretty complicated/cluttered tracks.
- Not too worried about heavier genres like metal/hard rock; not worried about super heavy bass response
Here are some quick examples of the kind of music I generally listen to, since I long ago gave up on definition by genre:
Airy vocals heavily laced with electronic sound (Little Boots)
Layered and dark (Moderat)
Electronic and instrumental mix (Heboscrub)
Bright energy (Studio Killers)
Bubbly (Caravan Palace)
I also listen to a lot of female vocals (Florence + The Machine, La Roux, etc) and male (Gotye, Muse, etc).
ATH-AD900: paired with Sound Blaster Z sound card was my initial recommendation. It still looks really good overall - comfort, general immersion, and most reviews praise the soundstage. The only problem is that I read a review that said the layers tend to bleed into each other. Is that true for any other owners of ATH-AD900? Please keep in mind I enjoy deeply layered tracks and a lot of electronic sound.
ATH-AD700: mostly on my list because they're on sale right now for 100. Their quality looks moderately comparable, though I am worried about them being very uncomfortable over long periods of time.
Sennheiser HD598: looks like another generally good phone for imaging. Have read good things about their ability to handle layered/complex songs. Have also heard they might be a little "boring", unsure of how true that is for most people. Seems like a good starter phone for gaming/music, could be wrong about that.
If you have any input or even different suggestions I would love to hear them.
Edited by Aurora-Storm - 9/5/13 at 1:42am