After reading tons of reviews here, I went with mono 8323 as my first "real" headphones. Prior I had skullcandy ...
Anyone have tips for learning about finding that great sound everyone here talks about? Amps, eq settings, etc. Anything helps.
Welcome to Head-Fi! Sorry about your wallet...
That's how it usually goes, but just starting out, it doesn't have to be that way! My advice for someone new is to focus on the music. Find music you love, and get good quality versions of it (no mp3s)! If you can, rip music from CDs as flac files, but, at least for me, most iTunes music these days is good enough for me. Music is why we're all here after all!
From there, I'd look into having a good music player. iPods are decent, but can be picky about your file type, and if you're like me, you'll wind up getting music in all kinds of formats. I've heard good things about the Sansa Clip after it's been 'Rockbox'ed (it's a firmware that you can install, google it)!
You shouldn't really need an amp for your current headphones, but if you decide to eventually get a nicer pair, you can look into it.
Enjoy the adventure!
Personally, I use HDTracks.com and similar sites, since they offer high quality files. Usually, though, I just buy physical CDs and rip them. That lets you rip it into any file type you want, up to a lossless 44.1/16 file, which is better than most download sites! Plus, you get to have a physical copy to rip or play any time you want!
There is nothing special about headphones sound. Hi-Fi philosophy is to deliver sound into your ears as real as it possible, to bring feelings like real musical instruments do. The more accurate and precise sound, the better hi-fi experience you get. Less distortions -> More fidelity.
Source. CD resolution (16/44) is enough to human ear.
Flatter frequency response of your music device - more accurate sound output.
EQ - is try to compensate possible lacks 'phones amplitude-frequency response and give some coloration.
Amplifier is used to deliver sound signal to headphones with more power.
More powerful 'phones - less battery life. If player has some output power limitations (like smartphones) - the worse sound you get. Anyway amps does not much affect.
Headphones. There are open and sealed full-size headphones. You can read a lot of articles about it.
Different headphones have different frequency response (and bunch of characteristics), what affect on sound imaging. Some deliver more bass, but lacks of treble, some have great mid and treble, but lacks of bass - this is totally up to your ears and tastes.
I have Sansa Clip+ Rockbox'ed ( I use it on work), + Sennheiser CX400 (I can't wear big headphones on the work), and in my opinion is a very nice combo for the price, for me there is just a negative point, if you play cool source music, the battery life could be a joke, I'm playing mp3 VBR 125kbps, and my battery life is about +-12/14 hours.
I keep watching your post niccernicus, is interesting to me :)