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If you had 250-300$ in your pocket....

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 

What headphones would you buy right now and why?

 

***I understand the amount of cash to work with may be lower than what most would be accustomed to paying, but trying to see what an impulse decision would be based on present knowledge.

 

Just trying a different approach.

 

I am still up in the air regarding what I want to get - though these are tempting at the price:

http://www.soundprofessionals.com/cgi-bin/gold/item/ATH-M50-AMP

 

Have at it gents and madams!

post #2 of 23

What sources are going to be used with the headphones?

post #3 of 23
Thread Starter 

Well, I was not considering that actually...but, since I am pretty much a barebone audio guy right now, I am running them off iPad or Pioneer VSX-323-K receiver.

 

I am lost right now, I don't know what to look for specifically and am quite unfamiliar with audio terms to define what I am looking for. Nothing too bassy, closed-back (ideally), noise-isolation would also be a good component to have. My musical range is fairly broad, but leans more on the rock side of things.

 

With movies, I'd want a headphone that will somewhat immerse me into it without sacrificing too much.

post #4 of 23
$300 is an "impulse" buy? I'm glad you don't live in my house. On your question, the short answer is that I would buy the Mr. Speakers Mad Dogs for $299. But, the answer will completely depend on what you are looking for. I want a neutral presentation with excellent extension on both ends, exceptional clarity & definition and a very smooth, easy sound that allows me to pick the notes from the various instruments - not just a jumbled V-shape of lows + highs. OTOH, if you just want to look cool at school, then buy Beats.
post #5 of 23
Thread Starter 

I can't seem to settle on any particular model to be honest. Mainly given my inexperience in the field. Kinda want my first one to kick things off nicely.

 

Though most folks seem to like the M50s, the DT770, SHR840, even some UE6000....etc

 

Then there is the drivers, is dynamic better? or should it be a dual driver? Quite the conundrum I find myself in, though part of me believes I am over-thinking this whole process.

post #6 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by billybob_jcv View Post

$300 is an "impulse" buy? I'm glad you don't live in my house. On your question, the short answer is that I would buy the Mr. Speakers Mad Dogs for $299. But, the answer will completely depend on what you are looking for. I want a neutral presentation with excellent extension on both ends, exceptional clarity & definition and a very smooth, easy sound that allows me to pick the notes from the various instruments - not just a jumbled V-shape of lows + highs. OTOH, if you just want to look cool at school, then buy Beats.


haha yeah...with 2 girls lots of renos and an increasing line of credit, I can only "splurge" so much.

post #7 of 23
Thread Starter 

I could also care less about looks...i don't go to school anymore nor do I ride the bus/subway/walk to work. so they could be beastly in size, it will mainly be used from the comfort of my home. besides, i dont really care what ppl would think about the oversized cans that would be in my head. I'm like that ;-)

post #8 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by groves69 View Post
 

I can't seem to settle on any particular model to be honest. Mainly given my inexperience in the field. Kinda want my first one to kick things off nicely.

Though most folks seem to like the M50s, the DT770, SHR840, even some UE6000....etc

Then there is the drivers, is dynamic better? or should it be a dual driver? Quite the conundrum I find myself in, though part of me believes I am over-thinking this whole process.

Receiver's headphone outputs usually have a high impedance, better to get headphones like the 250-Ohm DT770 Pro headphones,

But the iPad may not be able to drive them well enough, you might need to buy a separate headphone amplifier for use with the iPad, like the FiiO E11 portable headphone amplifier, $65.


Edited by PurpleAngel - 10/29/13 at 7:50am
post #9 of 23
Thread Starter 

So given that I would be using my iPad to drive the headphones, I would be best served with an amplifier to ensure proper output.

 

That was something I was considering, albeit depending on present headphones to be purchased. At that price, 65$, it would be worth the look.

Would an amplifier be required regardless of model if running on an iPad?

post #10 of 23

Here would be my ideal setup If I was limited to $250-300, Your ipad believe it or not actually has a VERY decent built in Dac, I'll give that to Apple. Even tho they buy them in bulk and just add their name to them. You'll either get a Wolfson or Cirrus Logic inside. So a standalone Dac can be looked at later down the line.

For headphones I'd go right to the Beyerdynamic DT770/80 or DT770/250 , You can get the 80's on ebay for $160 shipped or the 250's for $150 shipped.

I say the Beyers because you get top quality build and over the top all day comfort. Plus they sound FANTASTIC, you really have to double the price to get an upgrade in audio quality.

Next would be a smallish amp to power them up, Lets keep it simple as you have 1/2 your budget left after the cans.

So lets plan on around $100-150 on an amp.  You could go ahead and max out with the Fiio E12 BUT, I'd go for the E11. It's half the price and will power the Beyers nicely.

You could also get the E10 with has a Dac and Amp, BUT your DAC is actually better in your Ipad.  So it would be a waste.

 

 So right over $240 or so you can be off and running, you can also download Audirvana Free and save another $75, I'd also upgrade the cable that comes stock with the Fiio, I had nothing but problems with them, they break too easy. You can get a Cardas for under $30, Yeah cables are the last thing to upgrade but the Cardas build is great.

So here you go:

Beyer DT770/80 (Cheapest for 80's-right now)

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Beyerdynamic-DT-770-PRO-80-Closed-Back-Studio-Headphones-DT770-DT770-80-/121199818487?pt=US_DJ_Monitoring_Headphones&hash=item1c381276f7

Beyer DT770/250-Best Buy (Cheapest for 250's)

http://www.ebay.com/itm/beyerdynamic-Over-the-Ear-Studio-Headphones-/200976496473?pt=US_Headphones&hash=item2ecb21f759

Cardas 6 inch $16.50

http://www.ebay.com/itm/CARDAS-HPI-Audiophile-Interconnect-Cable-Adapter-Male-1-8-3-5mm-TRS-Mini-Plug-/190897125800?pt=US_Audio_Cables_Adapters&hash=item2c725af9a8

Cardas 18 inch $28.29  (I use this-the extra size for me is better)

http://www.ebay.com/itm/CARDAS-HPI-Length-18-Audiophile-Cable-Adapter-Male-1-8-3-5mm-TRS-Mini-Plug-/200971382714?pt=US_Audio_Cables_Adapters&hash=item2ecad3efba

Fiio E11 $62.99  Extra battery & Charger

http://www.amazon.com/Portable-Headphone-Amplifier-Accessory-Charger/dp/B004QVPGXK/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1383059962&sr=8-2&keywords=fiio+e11

Audirvana Free

http://mac.softpedia.com/get/Audio/Audirvana.shtml

post #11 of 23

closed

 

MrSpeakers Mad Dog
AKG K550/K551
Sony MDR-1R
Soundmagic HP-100 - reputed to have great balance
V-Moda M-100 
Beyerdynamic DT770 premium (32 Ohm) - by most accounts better sounding [somwhat] than the Pro
Yamaha Pro 400
Sennheiser Momentum (normally $350) - designed with portable sources in mind
Audio-Technica A900x - I believe this has a rather different signature than the M50 - improved in most ways and better control over bass

 

semi-open

 

Philips Fidelio L1
Beyerdynamic DT880 Pro 250-Ohm
AKG K701/Q701  (is this one semi-open or full-open, guys?)

 

open 

 

Philips Fidelio X1 -
Sony MDR-MA900

 

on-ear (portability)

 

Sennheiser Momentum on-ear
KEF M500
Beyerdynamic DT1350-80 and T51p

 

ps...how often will you be using them on-the-go or with iPad??? Where and how you'll be using them changes the priorities.

based on your description so far, the 250 Ohm Beyers look good, but you'll need a small amp to 'fully' drive them with an iPad.
the Beyers in 32-Ohm will be easier to drive but high-impedance will work better with the AV receiver.
the DT770, though, is closed, and the 770 Premium is 32-Ohm.
the DT880 in 32 is $40-$50 higher than the 250-Ohm on Amazon...
of those above, the Mad Dog is very highly favored on Head-Fi

 

If it were me, I'd compare the Mad Dog, K550/551, the DT770, and the 1R (especially for its comfort). (M-100 is rather bass-emphasized) and for the iPad source, all three of the on-ears above...

 

Also, the Fischer FA-003 is known for being very clear and relatively uncolored for this price range. Many say it 'feels' like an open headphone. The Fischer, Soundmagic, and AKG are likely more neutral than the others.

The 32 Ohm Beyer models, the Momentum, the 1R, the M500, and DT1350/T51p will play quite well (but of course sub-optimally) from most mobile devices.

 

all things considered:
The DT770/80-ohm is a good compromise. Pair this with a Fiio E11, and you'll get a better end-result than any of the $200+ cans in this list... but you should still try the 50-Ohm Mad Dog ($300) - MrSpeakers has a 15-day no-questions return policy.

Before I got my recent IEM's I was looking at the 770 myself. I'm sure that I will be again. :bigsmile_face: 

post #12 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Magicman74 View Post
 

Here would be my ideal setup If I was limited to $250-300, Your ipad believe it or not actually has a VERY decent built in Dac, I'll give that to Apple. Even tho they buy them in bulk and just add their name to them. You'll either get a Wolfson or Cirrus Logic inside. So a standalone Dac can be looked at later down the line.

For headphones I'd go right to the Beyerdynamic DT770/80 or DT770/250 , You can get the 80's on ebay for $160 shipped or the 250's for $150 shipped.

I say the Beyers because you get top quality build and over the top all day comfort. Plus they sound FANTASTIC, you really have to double the price to get an upgrade in audio quality.

Next would be a smallish amp to power them up, Lets keep it simple as you have 1/2 your budget left after the cans.

So lets plan on around $100-150 on an amp.  You could go ahead and max out with the Fiio E12 BUT, I'd go for the E11. It's half the price and will power the Beyers nicely.

You could also get the E10 with has a Dac and Amp, BUT your DAC is actually better in your Ipad.  So it would be a waste.

 

 So right over $240 or so you can be off and running, you can also download Audirvana Free and save another $75, I'd also upgrade the cable that comes stock with the Fiio, I had nothing but problems with them, they break too easy. You can get a Cardas for under $30, Yeah cables are the last thing to upgrade but the Cardas build is great.

So here you go:

Beyer DT770/80 (Cheapest for 80's-right now)

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Beyerdynamic-DT-770-PRO-80-Closed-Back-Studio-Headphones-DT770-DT770-80-/121199818487?pt=US_DJ_Monitoring_Headphones&hash=item1c381276f7

Beyer DT770/250-Best Buy (Cheapest for 250's)

http://www.ebay.com/itm/beyerdynamic-Over-the-Ear-Studio-Headphones-/200976496473?pt=US_Headphones&hash=item2ecb21f759

Cardas 6 inch $16.50

http://www.ebay.com/itm/CARDAS-HPI-Audiophile-Interconnect-Cable-Adapter-Male-1-8-3-5mm-TRS-Mini-Plug-/190897125800?pt=US_Audio_Cables_Adapters&hash=item2c725af9a8

Cardas 18 inch $28.29  (I use this-the extra size for me is better)

http://www.ebay.com/itm/CARDAS-HPI-Length-18-Audiophile-Cable-Adapter-Male-1-8-3-5mm-TRS-Mini-Plug-/200971382714?pt=US_Audio_Cables_Adapters&hash=item2ecad3efba

Fiio E11 $62.99  Extra battery & Charger

http://www.amazon.com/Portable-Headphone-Amplifier-Accessory-Charger/dp/B004QVPGXK/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1383059962&sr=8-2&keywords=fiio+e11

Audirvana Free

http://mac.softpedia.com/get/Audio/Audirvana.shtml


Wow that is great info! Definitely will be giving all this some serious consideration. I appreciate it!

post #13 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by carfentanil View Post
 

closed

 

MrSpeakers Mad Dog
AKG K550/K551
Sony MDR-1R
Soundmagic HP-100 - reputed to have great balance
V-Moda M-100 
Beyerdynamic DT770 premium (32 Ohm) - by most accounts better sounding [somwhat] than the Pro
Yamaha Pro 400
Sennheiser Momentum (normally $350) - designed with portable sources in mind
Audio-Technica A900x - I believe this has a rather different signature than the M50 - improved in most ways and better control over bass

 

semi-open

 

Philips Fidelio L1
Beyerdynamic DT880 Pro 250-Ohm
AKG K701/Q701  (is this one semi-open or full-open, guys?)

 

open 

 

Philips Fidelio X1 -
Sony MDR-MA900

 

on-ear (portability)

 

Sennheiser Momentum on-ear
KEF M500
Beyerdynamic DT1350-80 and T51p

 

ps...how often will you be using them on-the-go or with iPad??? Where and how you'll be using them changes the priorities.

based on your description so far, the 250 Ohm Beyers look good, but you'll need a small amp to 'fully' drive them with an iPad.
the Beyers in 32-Ohm will be easier to drive but high-impedance will work better with the AV receiver.
the DT770, though, is closed, and the 770 Premium is 32-Ohm.
the DT880 in 32 is $40-$50 higher than the 250-Ohm on Amazon...
of those above, the Mad Dog is very highly favored on Head-Fi

 

If it were me, I'd compare the Mad Dog, K550/551, the DT770, and the 1R (especially for its comfort). (M-100 is rather bass-emphasized) and for the iPad source, all three of the on-ears above...

 

Also, the Fischer FA-003 is known for being very clear and relatively uncolored for this price range. Many say it 'feels' like an open headphone. The Fischer, Soundmagic, and AKG are likely more neutral than the others.

The 32 Ohm Beyer models, the Momentum, the 1R, the M500, and DT1350/T51p will play quite well (but of course sub-optimally) from most mobile devices.

 

all things considered:
The DT770/80-ohm is a good compromise. Pair this with a Fiio E11, and you'll get a better end-result than any of the $200+ cans in this list... but you should still try the 50-Ohm Mad Dog ($300) - MrSpeakers has a 15-day no-questions return policy.

Before I got my recent IEM's I was looking at the 770 myself. I'm sure that I will be again. :bigsmile_face: 

I tried, really tried, to get IEMs to fit in my ear... When I managed to, I got headaches galore.

 

My preference would be closed as I want to be able to use them while in bed as well. My wife likes to watch her own stuff on her iPad. Sometimes with her Bose Soundlink Mini.

 

I would be using them about 50-50 (between iPad and receiver) My two girls like to monopolize the TV where the receiver is plugged.

 

You've listed a few options I had never looked at, like the Mad Dog or Yamahas...

 

Certainly helps though when there is general consensus regarding a particular headphone, such as is the case with the DT770s

 

Thanks for your input as well!

post #14 of 23

Anytime my friend, even at the $250-300 Range you can get a decent little set up going.  I wanted to add you could also switch out the E11 for the Schiit Magni, I didn't ask if you needed it to be portable? 

The Schiit will set you back only $99 and shipping.  Not bad for a small desktop, it also has PLENTY of power.

http://schiit.com/products/magni

 

I also recommend the Audioquest Evergreen: $34.75 (Great entry level Hi-Fi cable) You don't have to spend 1,000's on cables like some believe, this little $35 dollar cable is built great and works fantastic. (Make sure you buy from a legit dealer, Audioquest hi end cables are faked A LOT, when you charge $500 for a set of cables the scammers come out of the woodwork) (I use Sidewinders in my setup)

http://www.ebay.com/itm/AudioQuest-Evergreen-Audio-Interconnect-Cable-to-RCA-1M-/370920543980?pt=US_Audio_Cables_Adapters&hash=item565c9656ec


Edited by Magicman74 - 10/29/13 at 3:26pm
post #15 of 23

mr speakers mad dogs!

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