While I enjoy my ATH-A900X a lot, they aren't always the best for all types of music. Now that I've upgraded my source, I feel like I'm getting the very best from these cans, but I know the music well enough to know what I'm missing. Basically, the A900X lack depth in bass, I really like their mid-bass punch and speed and tightness, but they don't really deliver sub-bass. They have fantastic mids, and decent highs, but again I can hear the roll off in cymbal crashes at the very highest frequencies, and it is difficult to ignore.
I upgraded my DAC and now I listen (usually from iTunes) on a new MacBookPro with USB digital audio out to a Fostex HP-A3 DAC/Amp (nice DAC! I can definitely hear the immense improvement over cheaper DACs). It is basically the same DAC quality as the Fostex flagship HP-A8C, but with fewer channels (HP-A3 is only 2 channels) and a cheaper (but very clean) amp. Of course, my DAC is 1.6X the price of my cans, and I know that I'm getting the best out of the latter with this setup. And in any case, I bought a nice DAC thinking about leapfrogging up the quality ladder, and it would be nice to do so in the near future.
So far, after reading through head-fi.org and trying to figure out what would deliver the improvements I crave, I've been thinking about upgrading to one of the following:
1) Sony MDR-7520
2) Kenwood KH-K1000
3) Audio Technica ATH-ES 10
4) Fostex TH-600
Cost is not too great an object, anything under $500-600 is great. It would be great if they were somewhat portable (at least compared to the A900X, which isn't difficult!), but this isn't as important to me as sound quality. I want linear bass to sub-bass frequencies, clean mids and faithful highs, without much sibilance. Sound stage is desirable, but secondary to the frequency response. I can go open or closed, although closed is somewhat more desirable.
Am I missing any good stand-out candidates in this price range?
Thanks in advance for any and all advice!
PS…I'm not a basshead, I just want to have it all!
Edited by JHern - 11/6/13 at 9:30pm