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Trying to narrow X-Mas list (DT880 vs. HE400 vs. HD650)

post #1 of 50
Thread Starter 

Over the last year or so I've slowly build up my headphone collection.  I am ready to take the next step and trying to narrow my list down.  So far I have it narrowed to the DT880, HE400, and HD650 in no particular order. I enjoy a broad range of music ranging from rock, country, modern rock, and jazz.  Of my collection, I like my COPs the best.  Qualities I am looking for in the next step up include:

 

- Enhanced detail, but not to the extent where it becomes fatiguing 

- Improved soundstage 

- Extended bass, I enjoy the sound of my COPs, but wonder if they aren't capturing some of the lower notes accurately

- Quality and reliable construction


I only have one amp at the moment (FIO E17) and primarily listen on my Macbook Pro or iPhone.
 

Comments and/or suggestions appreciated.

post #2 of 50
Thread Starter 

I also forgot.  Would I need to add something like the FIO E09K for any of these headphones or word the FIO E17 suffice?

 

Thanks!

post #3 of 50
Thread Starter 

Bump. Did I post this in the wrong forum?

post #4 of 50

No, but the question is hazy, requires a knowledge of all headphones mentioned, including your COPs (took me a while to figure out what that was; thought you must have been watching the TV show), and has been asked in various forms a million times. 'I have This. I'm choosing between This, This, and This. Which is best?' The phones you've listed are all very different, so you really need a more consistent list to start with. Maybe you need to do a bit more reading and/or auditioning so you can put a more easily answered question.  

post #5 of 50
Thread Starter 

Unfortunately I don't have the ability to audition them locally. Also, to make it easier on my wife, I need to give her an exact model for my list.  I have read a number of reviews on the headphones individually and in theory have an idea of how they might sound, which is why I've narrowed it down to these 3.  I referenced my current headphones (COPs) so people would have an idea what I am listening to know and what I might gain from these other options.  Since there are people on this list who have owned, listened, or compared these headphones I was hoping for their opinion.  At this point it is an educated guess since I can't get my hands on them locally.

 

Thanks

post #6 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by seag33k View Post
 

Unfortunately I don't have the ability to audition them locally. Also, to make it easier on my wife, I need to give her an exact model for my list.  I have read a number of reviews on the headphones individually and in theory have an idea of how they might sound, which is why I've narrowed it down to these 3.  I referenced my current headphones (COPs) so people would have an idea what I am listening to know and what I might gain from these other options.  Since there are people on this list who have owned, listened, or compared these headphones I was hoping for their opinion.  At this point it is an educated guess since I can't get my hands on them locally.

 

Thanks

 

I have no idea what the highlighted sentence means, but it's certainly intriguing.  :p

 

As for the 3 listed phones, if you've read reviews you must have realized by now that the HD650 and DT880 are polar opposites, the former being relatively restrained in the treble with a full upper bass/lower midrange and the latter quite bright and relatively lean. Therefore you need to define out of those opposites which sound you prefer. I realize it's hard when you can't audition, but maybe your listed phones can give you a clue. I've never heard any of them, but I'd imagine the Beyer and Grado are quite lively (well, I know the Grado is), so if you rather like their balance you should be looking for something similar, which would exempt the HD650.

 

However, at this point I think I need to leave it to someone with experience of these phones lest I do more harm than good. Come on, guys, pitch in here.

post #7 of 50
Thread Starter 

The line you referenced meant that I need to do the research and decide which one I'd like for the holidays vs. her doing the shopping and research.

 

The models I've listed seem to have a good reputation among fellow audiophiles.  There are others with good reviews, but I tended to avoid those where the lack of bass is noted.  Someone recently reviewed the COPs and was kind enough to give me some insight regarding how they compare to the DT880/DT990s which are highly respected from the reviews I've read.  The HE400s reviews give me the feeling that they are very sensual with great dynamics and bass.  I've read some comments about reliability with these headphones but that may have been resolved in later revisions.  The HD650s seem like they are more laid back with a sense of warmth vs. analytical.  All models should offer better sound stage and imaging with their open back design.  They all sound wonderful, so it makes my choice very difficult.


Thanks for your input!

post #8 of 50

Well you missed the HE400 black friday sale, it was $300 (instead of $400) everywhere the past weekend.

post #9 of 50
Thread Starter 

I saw that but I didn't have enough info to make an informed purchase.  Sure will be hard to shell out the extra $100 if I head down that road!

post #10 of 50
I believe the HE400 is still available at a hefty discount at razor dog but not the full $100 off maybe.
post #11 of 50

Think the general consensus was that the HE-400 is overall the best in here, but it's up to preference on sound signature..

 

DT-880: more or less neutral

He-400: most detailed and bass boost

HD650: dark sounding and most comfortable

post #12 of 50
Heres the thing, you cant really go too wrong with any of those.

In my experience the he400 will be the most fun of the bunch with bass and some sparkle/sizzle. The hd650s wil be the least offensive safest choice. And the beyers would be my choice, i like their presentation most. Some ppl find them either thin or boring but i find them nice.

But as i stated at the start, all 3 are good. I doubt any would truely disappoint.
post #13 of 50
Thread Starter 

There were some older posts regarding consistency or build issues with the HE-400s.  Were these isolated incidents?

 

Thanks for the great synopsis!

post #14 of 50
Oh i forgot to add, i find the beyers to be the most comfortable of those 3. Which is an important factor to me.
post #15 of 50

I've owned all three.  I can't tell you which you will like better, but I can share a few bits from my experience.

 

1.  HD650- Great headphones for me.  Comfortable, relaxing, excellent vocals (especially female which is what I listen to often), bass is perfectly adequate for me, and the highs never bother me.  The most expensive of your list, but, to me, the most enjoayble

 

2.  DT880 (600)- Extremely comfortable headphones.  They are light (in weight), do not clamp too hard, and have very soft ear pads.  These are definitely some of the most comfortable headphones I've had the pleasure of using.  Highs are more intense than the HD650, but not to the point of unenjoyable to me (although they might be at the edge).  If you can find a good deal on these, they are probably the best value. 

 

3.  HE-400- In my opinion, the base and treble are emphasized more than other headphones to a degree that makes me not like them.  Under normal listening levels, my HE-400 rumbled a bit in the bass once or twice and the higher frequencies were fatiguing to me, once to the point I had to take them off because the sound was physically uncomfortable.  I sold them.  Comfort wise, they were perfectly acceptable for me.  Definitely, my least favorite of the three.

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