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Buying some decent headphones for my girlfriend (in the $200-300 range)

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

So my girlfriend has taken notice of my recent headphone infatuation / addiction, and since she travels a lot for work, she basically dropped a big hint that she'd be happy getting some good headphones for a Valentines day present. This is also great for me as I'll be able to play with whatever I get her and listen whenever she's not using them (which will be a lot).

 

As I mentioned, she travels a lot for work, and that is when she would be using her headphones the most (on flights, primarily) - so noise canceling / isolation is important. Also, a smallish form factor or something that can fold up or lie-flat, so it doesn't take up a ton of space is good. We could do IEM's, although I think she would prefer over-ears. Comfort is also a big deal, as is being easily powered by her iPhone or MBP. Beyond that, I'm sure a remote would be handy - but it's not necessary. So to summarize, 

 

Good sound (first and foremost)

Noise canceling or isolation (Closed-back mandatory - doesn't have to be active NC, so long as it's effective)

Not massive in terms of form factor - ideally can fold or lie flat for storage

Comfort

Remote (not mandatory, but would be nice)

Not opposed to IEMs, but leaning more towards over-ear

 

I have been thinking of:

 

Senn Momentums

AKG K550 or K551

PSB M4U 2 (more than I want to spend, but would consider it… have heard some strong reviews of the M4U 1's)

ATH-M50 (based on how many people seem to enjoy these, I think she' would probably dig them - I would just rather go with something better, and less predictable)

 

In terms of IEMs, I dig the new Sony XBA line - but not sure if it is really good for what she wants. 

 

Any thoughts or other recommendations? Thanks in advance!


Edited by thievesarmy - 2/7/14 at 1:59pm
post #2 of 12

When you say momentums are you referring to the on ear or over ears? If over ears, thumbs up, if on ears, then i dont recommend them.

 

ATH M50 is also not very portable. Cable is a bit of a pain to deal with, and i also dont find them very comfortable.

 

Sony MDR 1R is also not too bad of a choice to consider.

 

If you want noise cancelling, bose is still the king. If its not necessary, then probably just forget it. Not many really good noise cancelling. Maybe can consider UE 6000 or UE 9000. But if u want REAL noise cancelling, Bose. Sound isnt as bad as what a lot of people might say, but there are definitely better sounding headphones at 300 ish.

post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 

definitely the over-ear momentums. 

 

I own the MDR-1R's, I like them but since I already own them I'm probably not gonna get them for her.

post #4 of 12

If she flies a lot, Tyll recommended these http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/travelers-sanctuary-bose-quiet-comfort-20-noise-canceling-earphone and they have a remote.

 

Another I haven't heard yet is HP50: http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/i-love-these-headphonesthe-nad-viso-hp50.

 

Of the ones you mentioned, the only I one can agree with is Sennheiser Momentum (over ear) because it's light and comfortable on the top of the head, has the remote you want, and is made of quality materials. The only negatives are that it doesn't fold up and the earcups are small. But it comes with a solid case.

 

What's her taste in music?

post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 

she likes indie / power-pop. The Strokes, Ramones, Smiths, etc.

post #6 of 12

i would say go for the Momentum.

post #7 of 12
I second that
post #8 of 12

Try the K545... they are just like the k550 and k551 but come with two detachable remote cables and smaller earcups. They are still over-ear and fold flat like their larger cousins.

post #9 of 12

Got my girlfriend some over the ear Momentums for her birthday. She loves them. She's not into music like I am listening mostly to popular music through cheap earbuds. Her first words were, "these sound amazing". I agree that they do sound really good but aren't quite my cup of tea.

post #10 of 12

You might want to consider parrot Zik, it's $100 over your budget but it really is convenience to bring for travel since it is both wireless and has NC, I heard people are saying that the sound is pretty amazing too

post #11 of 12
Ehhh the sound is a bit muffled and theyre heavy and not that comfortable
post #12 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by benthughes View Post
 

Got my girlfriend some over the ear Momentums for her birthday. She loves them. She's not into music like I am listening mostly to popular music through cheap earbuds. Her first words were, "these sound amazing". I agree that they do sound really good but aren't quite my cup of tea.

 

Sweet! What color did you go for?

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