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Need Headphone Recommendation

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

Hi,

 

I'm looking into getting my first non-generic headphone and need some advice. I'm looking for a circumaural headphone. I currently live in a dorm; therefore, it has to have a decent isolation; so, I guess a closed headphone is preferred.

 

I would mostly use it for gaming and movies; the games are mostly strategy ones so audio positioning is not as important. Foldability is nice but not required. The budget is ~150, although I can go to 200 if the extra cash is worth.

 

The headphone must not require amplification.

 

From what I've been reading, the Audio Technica M50 sounds a good match, although I've also heard good things from the KRK KNS8400 and the Ultrasone HFI 580. Where does the audio Technica A700x stand in all this? The Shure SRH840 also looks promising. Any comments on this? Any good candidate on this price range that I missed?

 

My priorities are comfort, as long as sound quality is good.

post #2 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by genious 7 View Post
 

I'm looking into getting my first non-generic headphone and need some advice. I'm looking for a circumaural headphone. I currently live in a dorm; therefore, it has to have a decent isolation; so, I guess a closed headphone is preferred.

I would mostly use it for gaming and movies; the games are mostly strategy ones so audio positioning is not as important. Foldability is nice but not required. The budget is ~150, although I can go to 200 if the extra cash is worth.

The headphone must not require amplification.

From what I've been reading, the Audio Technica M50 sounds a good match, although I've also heard good things from the KRK KNS8400 and the Ultrasone HFI 580. Where does the audio Technica A700x stand in all this? The Shure SRH840 also looks promising. Any comments on this? Any good candidate on this price range that I missed?

My priorities are comfort, as long as sound quality is good.

You might find a used Shure SRH840 with in your budget, I've never used it, but it seems well liked.

You also might consider get an Asus Xonar DG (PCI) sound card, $27 and there is a $10 mail in rebate this month, It comes with a basic headphone amplifier.

post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
 You might find a used Shure SRH840 with in your budget, I've never used it, but it seems well liked.

You also might consider get an Asus Xonar DG (PCI) sound card, $27 and there is a $10 mail in rebate this month, It comes with a basic headphone amplifier.

 

Unfortunately, I'm on a laptop at college, so a soundcard is unfeasible. Due to limited USB ports, a usb soundcard isn't possible either. A portable amp is possible, but I'd rather avoid it if I could, unless any of the headphones at this price range benefit enough to consider buying a headphone+amp over a more expensive headphone.

post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by genious 7 View Post
 

 

Unfortunately, I'm on a laptop at college, so a soundcard is unfeasible. Due to limited USB ports, a usb soundcard isn't possible either. A portable amp is possible, but I'd rather avoid it if I could, unless any of the headphones at this price range benefit enough to consider buying a headphone+amp over a more expensive headphone.


Better to buy the best headphone with in your budget.

http://www.head-fi.org/t/683441/shure-srh840-price-dropped

post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 

Thanks. Any comments regarding the other options, especially  if there is anything I should know about the headphones comfort wise. Comments and comparisons are appreciated. The list is rewritten below

 

-M50 (Should I even consider it? It's rather confusing due to the two models. If I got one, it'd be the new one)

-SRH840

-HFI580

-ATH-A700X (Only one in the list that doesn't fold. Any reason why I should keep considering it?)

-KRK KNS8400

 

Priorities are comfort and sound, with a slight edge towards comfort.

post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by genious 7 View Post
 

Thanks. Any comments regarding the other options, especially  if there is anything I should know about the headphones comfort wise. Comments and comparisons are appreciated. The list is rewritten below

-M50 (Should I even consider it? It's rather confusing due to the two models. If I got one, it'd be the new one)

-SRH840

-HFI580

-ATH-A700X (Only one in the list that doesn't fold. Any reason why I should keep considering it?)

-KRK KNS8400

Priorities are comfort and sound, with a slight edge towards comfort.

The ATH-M50 is a bassy music headphone, with a recessed mid range, and lacking good surround sound.

I've never listened to the SRH840, but everyone who owns one seems to have no problem recommending it.

HFI-580 might be a good choice, but have not really seem a lot of detailed reviews on it to really understand it's type of sound.

I own the ATH-A900X and it's one of my favorite headphones, but not sure how well the A700x measures up to it.

I own the KNK8400, guess their good sounding headphones, but does not inspire me.

post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

HFI-580 might be a good choice, but have not really seem a lot of detailed reviews on it to really understand it's type of sound.

Add several db of bass boost to the M50s to get an idea what the bass difference is like. Then the SLogic gives them a much more immersive soundstage. In comparison to the 580s, I describe my M50s as demure; the 580s have a much more engaging, more of a feet moving get you into the music kind of sound. The M50s are more sitting listening to music on a couch from a stereo kind of feeling; the 580s more like being in a club smily_headphones1.gif
post #8 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

The ATH-M50 is a bassy music headphone, with a recessed mid range, and lacking good surround sound.

I've never listened to the SRH840, but everyone who owns one seems to have no problem recommending it.

HFI-580 might be a good choice, but have not really seem a lot of detailed reviews on it to really understand it's type of sound.

I own the ATH-A900X and it's one of my favorite headphones, but not sure how well the A700x measures up to it.

I own the KNK8400, guess their good sounding headphones, but does not inspire me.

^My vote goes to the A700/A700x  When I was looking to get my first pair of good cans I almost got A700s.  They have a very good soundstage for closed back headphones and pretty damn good imaging as well iirc.  I think they would be a very good option for gaming.  

 

They have very little bass impact,  if you listen to hip hop/rap, pop, or electronic music it might sound a little strange if you're used to bassy cans that emphasize bass a lot more.  The other con I remember facing when I was in the market for them was their massive size.  People say the cup is almost the size of a CD.  If you have a big-ish head I don't think you'll experience any comfort problems.

post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 

Right now I'm leaning towards the M50. The HFI 580 definitely has better sound according to what I've researched; no doubts about that. However, I've read that some people do find it uncomfortable after extended periods. In my case, comfort takes a slightly higher priority since I do long gaming sessions occasionally. Unfortunately, I can't try it out beforehand, so I'd rather go for the safer route (comfort wise) of the M50.

 

I am aware that some people do swap the pads on the HFI 580 to make it more comfortable, however, that adds to the expense and I can find the M50 for a cheaper price. I don't know about the A700x; seems like a good candidate but I do gain the foldability with the M50 + again, I cant try out the wings design beforehand.

 

It's definitely not the best, but I feel the M50 is the safest choice comfort-wise without tryouts. I figure I'll probably be fine with it anyways, since I'll see an improvement compared to my existing generic stuff.

post #10 of 11
My experience is not that the M50s are significantly better in comfort than the HFI-580s, other than the 580s have a bit more clamping force. This is to support the bass output since you need a good seal for good bass. The Ultrasones do loosen up through use. So keep in mind people complaining of comfort who have demoed a new pair do not actually know what the comfort of the headphones is. Plus, you can loosen the clamping pressure by placing the headphones over (around) some books for a few days.
post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 

I'll go by your word and take the (comfort) risk with the HFI, as pretty much everyone says it sounds better than the (new) M50. Hopefully, as you say, comfort will be "good enough" for my needs. Worst case scenario, Ill return them and go for the M50. I will try them for a week to give them time to loosen up, and may try the book trick you suggested if I find them too tight.

 

Just wondering,

 

A) What is the opinion of inline volume controls (not amps, dont want to deal with batteries) over here, in the audiophile world?

B) I know that the DT 250 pads fit on the HFI 580; I also know the comfort improves with those. Is the sound affected?

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