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Received "interesting" opinion today...

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Not sure I should mention the brick and mortar I was at today, but while checking out headphones today at a place that rhymes with Cuitar Genter, I was asked if I needed any help. I said I was hoping to compare the Sennheiser 518 and 558. The dude looked at me kinda strange and said they didn't have those, but the Sennheiser 251HDs were really nice. He then proceeded to open up the box and have me plug them into my phone. As I put them on he started saying something about how they are made like Beats and...that's when I started listening to the headphones and stopped listening to him.

I have a laundry list of concerns about this experience, both with the headphones and the employee, but I guess my main one is...was he trying to pull one over on me or does he not know what he is talking about?

Before dropping some good coin, I'd like to HEAR what I'm gonna buy and this is really the only place I can go for an audible tryout.

Your thoughts about my experience? What the guy said? Is an audible audition with pandora from my phone sufficient?

Thanks ahead of time!
post #2 of 6
If you are looking for guidance or expertise from a retail employee.... you're asking for trouble. Brick and mortar stores have such high turnover, the employees are never there long enough to actually learn anything. Yes there are exceptions of course.

As to your questions; you are doing the right thing by trying before you buy, audio gear is pretty personal and someone telling you you'll like it.....won't mean you'll actually like it.

Using Pandora off of your phone isn't the best way to go about it, but it's better than nothing. Maybe uploading some high bitrate mp3 files of songs you know well to your phone would be your next best option.
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the reply!


I do most of my research here and a few other audiophile websites.  When I get a little more serious i'll look up reviews on Amazon, then I will finally go to a brick and mortar and hear what each has to offer.  I think i'm going to dedicate an SD card to FLAC files and pop that in next time I go for a listen.


I didn't really expect the guy to know what he was talking about, but his suggestion seemed to be so off, it almost made me think he was trying to pull one over on me.  I sort of stand out in a store like that, so I thought perhaps he was just trying to pull one over on the funny looking guy...not sure if that would be better then incompetence of not...


Again, thanks for the RE.  I'm new here, this is my first thread and its nice to get a response to a question!




post #4 of 6

You mean the HD25-1?

Kinda like these? http://www.sennheiser.ca/live/senn/produit/en/643

They're quite decent and portable headphones.Not devoid of flaws, but what is? They're in a completely different form factor than what you wanted to try though.


 I have a laundry list of concerns about this experience, both with the headphones and the employee, but I guess my main one is...was he trying to pull one over on me or does he not know what he is talking about?


Actually I don't quite understand what you're trying to ask either.

Might you elaborate your thoughts?

Is it more towards the line of "how dare he compare HD-25's to beats" or the opposite way--"how dare he compare beats to HD25's"?

And what aspect was the salesperson referring to when he compared them to beats? sound, build, portability, fashion, etc?


But, definitely, it's always preferable or say, ideal, to have a listen first to know what aligns with your tastes. What everyone says is great, may not be reflected with the same opinion through every pair of ears.


As far as what to use to audition them, well, unless you plan on upgrading your portable music setup anytime soon, try with the gears you normally use (your phone, for instance) with some of your favorite tracks. Try to pick out a few tracks that are relatively different sounding so you can evaluate different aspects of the headphones.

post #5 of 6

what is your budget & what are you looking for? we can all help & pitch in w/ suggestions.


mmm... yea usually employee aren't "headphone enthusiasts/audiophiles." they are just trying to make sales & beats is a very popular consumer brand.


for listening demos, you should definitely download some 320kbps mp3 files onto your phone to use. pandora is streaming (so quality loss already) + who knows what bitrate their music is. You need high-quality music in order to determine if the sonic deficiencies are due to the headphones rather than your source. demoing headphones is very smart & you're definitely on the right track!


hope you find something you like.

post #6 of 6
Think budget, think type of music, think environment you listen in (indoors, outdoors, on the move, quiet or noisy background).
Use samples that are typical of your day to day listening.
Check various recommendation threads...
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