I'm new on the forum but I've been looking around for quite some time actually. I've been looking for a portable headphone/IEM which I can use with my phone (HTC One X). A bit about myself. I'm 21 years old, living in Holland and slowly starting to become quite the audiophile and with a good set at home you'll need something good for on the road too.
On the road (read: public transport). But also during the late hours when my loudspeakers can't play as hard as I'd sometimes want too.
I'd say 75% of this is hip-hop (please don't recommend me Beats by Dre). The other 25% would be other genres like R&B, singer/songwriter and also movies/series.
I like a simplistic headphone and can only cheer at the use of nice good quality materials. No big headphones for me, no flashing colors. Perfect headphone: Aëdle VK-1. Why is it important? I work in fashion (I can't even decide my own haircut) so they would have to be representable. Beats by Dre were recommended but no, just no.
I am looking for a mostly neutral but leaning towards warm sound. The bass can be present (more than usual) but not bloated. Now I don't have much experience in (higher-end) headphones/IEM's but these are my experiences with some, just to get an idea of how I perceive sound.
B&W P3: Sounded very muffled, especially compared to the P5 which sounder better but a bit boring.
B&W P5: Very musical sounding but not really good compared to the Yamaha EPH-100.
Grado SR325is: A bit aggressive and not suitable for portable use because of the open design.
KEF M500: My phone can't drive it properly. Or sounds very thin, either way. I've always found KEF loudspeakers thin sounding.
Philips Fidelio M1: Sounds good, not much more to add. Haven't really auditioned this just a quick listen.
Sennheiser CX-300 II: Oke sounding, can't expect too much for the price. Really hate the asymmetrical cable.
Sennheiser Momentum: Sounds good, but not 300 Euros good. Rather go with the Philips M1 then.
Yamaha EPH-100: Great sound, really great sound but just doesn't match with my ears. My ears are quite small and these things hurt quite a bit after I insert them.
Now I've been looking for some headphones but most of them are really hard to find inside the Netherlands. Import is also an option (any EU country). Of course will I try to audition as many headphones as possible. This is my shortlist:
Aëdle VK-1: Just love the look of this headphone. And according to the only (English?) review I could find also a great product. Problem is he calls it a dark-sounding and I can't audition this myself, but I'm in love with it already :(
Beyerdynamic T51p: New so I'll have to audition this one myself, no problems with that.
B&W P7: Should be substantially better than the P5.
Fischer Audio TBA-04: Not out yet but could be a winner, I'll just wait for some reviews first.
Final Audio Design Heaven IV: What I've heard about the midrange attracts me.
Final Audio Design Pandora IV: On the expensive side but looks amazing, also see above.
Mr. Speakers Mad Dogs v3.2: Might be a bit too large tho. Reviews are really amazing.
NAD VISO HP-50: I like the NAD amplifier sound, so why not give them a go.
Sennheiser IE-80: Not much too say, want to audition them that is all.
These are the products that did not make the cut, there are more but not in the 400 Euro pricerange, these are just some I wanted to point out:
B&W C5, P3 & P5: Just not good enough after hearing the Yamaha EPH-100's.
Fischer Audio DBA-02 Mk. II: I just expect the TBA-04 to be better, not the sound signature, just better.
Shure SE535: Horrific fit for my ears. Didn't even want to listen to them.
Yamaha HPH-PRO 500: It's the looks that ruined this thing. They look exactly like Beats, I don't like it.
So, the main question here is: Am I missing some brilliant (and good looking) headphones/IEM's?