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Recommendation for Neutral Sounding Headphones

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hello,

I am newbie and new to this forum and I live in Germany and because of this forum i have bought myself an Ultrasone HFI 580, which i LOVE. haha.. 

 

So I am searching for a pair of neutral sounding headphone to buy myself a Christmas present.

 

I want it to have a very big soundstage, neutral sound, basically good for all kinds of genre, maybe some jazz, classical, or pop, and also comfortable.

 

I have an Ultrasone HFI-580 for listening to bassy songs or just some pop and i want to buy another one that is neutral, not bass heavy like HFI 580. I am looking at Sennheiser HD 598 because i think they look good and they have good reviews and i can get them for around 180 euros. 

 

So do you guys have any recommendations to my preference of music? The price range is around Sennheiser HD 598, or maybe 200 euros max. I can't spend more than that. 

 

And IF i buy the Sennheiser HD 598, or any other headphones, do i need an amp with that? If yes, what kind of amps would you recommend and how much it costs.

 

Thank you very much in advance for all of your helps.

post #2 of 16
Thread Starter 

bump

post #3 of 16

Try the NAD Viso HP50?

 

The HD598 doesn't need an amp, but will be happier with one.

post #4 of 16

AKG K701 is 199€ including shipping from Thomann, and I think that may be an option include to get the discussion going. They have a good selection of headphones both for studio use and hifi listening.

 

And an amp or a good hi-fi soundcard is recommended for full size headphones, especially when impedance is at 50Ohms and upwards like with the Sennheisers you've been looking at. FiiO E17 is a popular portable option, but for desktop use there's a bunch of good USB DAC/amps that you can get for around 100€.

post #5 of 16

And I just got the Philips Fidelio X1, which you can get for €195 at amazon.de. They are spectacular, but they are a bit more bassy than the average open backed headphones so I guess they are more of an alternative to the neutral sound. If you can find a pair to listen to I recommend you try them on anyway.

post #6 of 16
Hello!

The HD598 is an excellent headphone for your genre but I personally so not think they are neutral! It has a forward mids with roll off at both ends. The MA-900 is a step up from these HD598.

Other than that, you may look into the Grado. The SR60i is more than enough if you listen to aggressive songs. Guitars sound very detailed and clear with the Grado.

Hope it helps!
Billson smily_headphones1.gif
post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 

first of all, thank you very much for all of your answers, it is very very much appreciated.

 

If it is between AKG K701, Sennheiser HD598, and Grado SR60i? which do you guys think will have the biggest soundstage and better sound, and clarity overall, and suit to my music preference? I've only tried Sennheiser HD598 because it is sold in Saturn but the others i do not have the opportunity to try them as i do not know where.

 

and how about NAD Viso HP50? i've never even heard of them. i'm a newb.. hahha

post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by tempuraudon View Post

first of all, thank you very much for all of your answers, it is very very much appreciated.

If it is between AKG K701, Sennheiser HD598, and Grado SR60i? which do you guys think will have the biggest soundstage and better sound, and clarity overall, and suit to my music preference? I've only tried Sennheiser HD598 because it is sold in Saturn but the others i do not have the opportunity to try them as i do not know where.

and how about NAD Viso HP50? i've never even heard of them. i'm a newb.. hahha

Is there anything that you like/dislike about the HD598? Personally, I find them to have slight sibilants. If you are looking for clarity, these are definitely not for you!

Do you a budget for this set-up? I will be getting a pair of AKG Annie's first week of next month. If you are willing to wait, I can give you a quick impression on what I think about it and will see if it suits you smily_headphones1.gif
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 

hmm, if i want to have a clarity and soundstage should i buy an AKG? i think i can wait a few weeks. hahaha.. i'm planning to buy the headphone early december for my christmas present. I am posting here now so i can do more research and just to be sure what to buy later. hahaha

 

is the AKG annie the same as AKG k701? because based on a quick search AKG annie is super expensive

post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by tempuraudon View Post

hmm, if i want to have a clarity and soundstage should i buy an AKG? i think i can wait a few weeks. hahaha.. i'm planning to buy the headphone early december for my christmas present. I am posting here now so i can do more research and just to be sure what to buy later. hahaha

is the AKG annie the same as AKG k701? because based on a quick search AKG annie is super expensive

I got a good deal for a pair of used AKG Annie along with FiiO E09K/E07K for BND 400 (less than USD340). ^_^ I heard the K712 Pro is up a step than the Annie so if the Annie suit you, you should go for the cheaper K712 Pro smily_headphones1.gif

AKG K701/2, Q701, K712 Pro are different! The K701/2 to some people, have this plastic midrange and sound thin. Q701 sound warmer. K712 Pro sound more warmer with more bass and darker sound. That's what the information I gathered while I was deciding to go for the Annie's or not xD

What's your max budget? smily_headphones1.gif

Billson smily_headphones1.gif
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 

my max budget is 200 €, i've done more research with AKG and Sennheiser and people said that to get the maximum out of AKG, you need an amp but Sennheiser is easier to drive and some also say that Sennheiser is more forgiving of bad recordings. is it true?

post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by tempuraudon View Post

my max budget is 200 €, i've done more research with AKG and Sennheiser and people said that to get the maximum out of AKG, you need an amp but Sennheiser is easier to drive and some also say that Sennheiser is more forgiving of bad recordings. is it true?

Yep! The AKG x7xx does requires plenty of juice to power it! The HD598 on the other hand, is easier to drive. In fact, it can be easily driven by any devices. The HD598 however, does not sound as good.

As I was typing this, the ATH-AD series came into my mind! Can't believe I forgot to mention it!!! They are among the airiest headphone around with great clarity! I am talking about the ATH-AD900x/1000x

Hope it helps!
Billson smily_headphones1.gif
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillsonChang007 View Post


Yep! The AKG x7xx does requires plenty of juice to power it! The HD598 on the other hand, is easier to drive. In fact, it can be easily driven by any devices. The HD598 however, does not sound as good.

As I was typing this, the ATH-AD series came into my mind! Can't believe I forgot to mention it!!! They are among the airiest headphone around with great clarity! I am talking about the ATH-AD900x/1000x

Hope it helps!
Billson smily_headphones1.gif

 

my mistake on before, actually i tried Sennheiser HD558 not Sennheiser HD598. sorry for giving false information. although they said the driver being used is the same and the build is identical except for the color, they said the sound quality is better and more refined. 
ATH-AD900x, AKG Q701, and AKG annie are out of my price range,
okay so after having reading LOTS of reviews of headphones and searching them to know their price, it kinda raises more questions and choices than answer, lol. So here's my list of headphones that i'm considering:
- AKG K701 (€199) - i've read it has great clarity and having great sound in general
- Philips Fidelio X1 (€195) - i've read that they are really good and i think €195 is a very very good deal and i've read in a review saying it is even on par with Sennheiser HD650
- Sennheiser HD 598 (€179) - i have not heard them, but i guess it counts as trying them on (Sennheiser HD558) and omg they are super comfortable (if it's the same), and good all rounder
- Sony MDR MA900 (€155) - i've read that this surpasses the Sennheiser HD598 and generally good reviews, and cheapest of them all.
post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by tempuraudon View Post
 

 

The HD598 and HD558 may have the same driver, but they do sound slightly different other than more refined; 

http://graphs.headphone.com/graphCompare.php?graphType=0&graphID[]=2841&graphID[]=2861&graphID[]=2851

 

As for the X1, I doubt they are on par with HD650 but you can read Mad Lust Envy's guide here for the AKG K701, X1, and MA-900;

http://www.head-fi.org/t/534479/mad-lust-envys-headphone-gaming-guide-updated-9-2-2013-sony-ma900-added 

 

Billson 

post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillsonChang007 View Post

 

As for the X1, I doubt they are on par with HD650 but you can read Mad Lust Envy's guide here for the AKG K701, X1, and MA-900;

http://www.head-fi.org/t/534479/mad-lust-envys-headphone-gaming-guide-updated-9-2-2013-sony-ma900-added 

 

Billson 

 

X1 is a special case. They have a wide bottom end that's quite unique for open cans, without really sacrificing much of the detail that you expect from open backs. It's all there, just a somewhat different FR curve. And, in my very personal opinion, there's something about that bass extension that really lifts the rest of the soundstage, and the gentler midrange is more suitable to my ears.

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