My turn to review. :)
I bought two headphones from Ebay seller bear84speeed. With free shipping, I got them in two weeks. Great seller. Gave a Red pair to my friend as a Christmas gift, while I kept my Black pair.
Well, after hours and hours of tweaking with my EQ on the Asus Xonar DX sound card, I found the sweetspot! http://imgur.com/5jW4xGs
I use headphones all the time. I like concentrated sound towards my ears and privacy of good sound while not bothering others. My scope of usage is limited to my desktop, and to my phone when I am exercising.
I have bad hearing, thus I need to wear my in-channel hearing aids. Chemotherapy killed some of my ear nerves. It is necessary for me to have a good EQ in order to enjoy sound. I listen to my headphones without my hearing aids.
Due to my limited experience trying out different headphones, I will be comparing these with my Bose QC2 that are 8 years old(revision 2), and have tens of thousands of hours use under their belt. Original, very worn pads with faux leather material rubbed off. My S680's have about 100 hours of burn time and about 30 hours of listening time mostly through my phone.
I mostly listen to Hip-Hop/Rap, Trip-Hop/Downtempo, IDM, Electronic, Abstract Hip-Hop, Abstract Trip-Hop, and experimentals. Countries of origin for my music are Belarus, Russia, Ukraine, Germany, one from New Zealand, one from Australia, and one artist from Tajikistan. I do not enjoy other genres. I tried to listen to some U2 and these did a pretty good job!
Bose QC2 do a pretty good reproduction down to about 40Hz, and below that they get really muddy. The S680 gets down to about 20Hz of solid bass. S680 has a much more airy feeling to them, like I am at the concert, while QC2 feel tight, and very boxed in, almost like in a very small padded room. The S680's do a much better job at picking out different elements of bass notes, while Bose clumps them together. The bass for S680's is pretty tight, but Bose is tighter. S680 definitely wins on clarity and definition.
As shown above in my picture link, I had to turn down my mids. Same goes on my phone. To my ears, by default, the mids are too pronounced and they intrude into both ends of sound spectrum. Bose does an excellent job here, easily distinguishing individual elements. After tweaking my EQ, the S680's sound great. Again, more airy feeling than Bose. After tweaking, S680's win by a small margin. Both do a great job.
As others have noticed before, the treble is subdued by default. In addition, my hearing has a really hard time with treble. I had to turn up the treble in order to pick out extra elements from my music. The Bose have an easier time reproducing treble, thus they were setup flat, with an extra amplification at 16,000Hz. By default, Bose wins, hands down, but after tweaking, they are on par.
There is no comparison. As mentioned previously, S680 have a very airy feeling compared to Bose. At first glance, I felt like things were echoing in the background, but later compared against my car sound system that 'echoes' were supposed to happen. A lot of my songs have significant ambiance included and S680's shine. S680 wins.
On some Russian Rap songs, the S680's have a little trouble reproducing the bass on my Xonar sound card. Due to BenF's recommendation of HiFimeDIY DAC, there is high likelihood that I will be buying one. This doesn't happen with my HTC Sensation with PowerAmp.
The plastics used in S680 is excellent. It may be cheap, but I have a feeling that it won't shatter or bend. The adjustable band has an excellent feel. The ear pads are not as plush as Bose, and for my big ears, these headphones are on-ear. The material on ear pads and head rest is excellent quality. It took me a little while to adjust to them, as I am fan of around-ear solutions. These headphones weight almost the same as Bose. The cord is nice and thick. It is also much shorter than Bose, which I really like.
The plastic surround the ear cups is semi-gloss. You will see fingerprints if your hands are not washed and dried. So far, they haven't gotten any scratches.
These headphones have a pretty strong clamping force. Shaking your head exhibits very little amount of movement. Good clamping force allows me to hear the details better and it allows me to exercise without worrying that my headphones might fall off.
In games such as Team Fortress 2, Battlefield Bad Company 2, and Battlefield 4, they sound excellent. Explosions are felt, individual gun sounds are distinguishable, and footsteps are pretty easy to hear.
These are great! Very happy with my 80 dollars!
Edited by GeneralPsycho - 1/20/14 at 10:17am