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Any monitor headphones better than Sennheiser HD 25-1 ii? (Sound Quality)

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Iv'e searched all over, and the based off reviews the top monitor headphones in the same price range I found were:


NAD Viso HP50

Beyerdynamic DT990

Grado SR 325is


I will be using headphones to make EDM and other genres like Folk and Rock + Hip Hop beats. 

I need a headphone that is accurate and I guess more on the flat side since I'll be creating and not DJing, but also "fun" so I can really get into the songs.


When I listen to the HD25 iis I feel like there has to be something more immersive out there. So if theres something with clearer sound quality and maybe a little more power in the bass please let me know. For that reason I was even considering Beats Studio 2013 because of the sub bass. I heard the Senn HD8 has nice bass too, but it might be too intense. I like the HD 25 1 iis a lot but I want something that will definitely be an upgrade!


I'll spend between 300 and 400$ and Dont care about design/comfort/durability at all- just sound.

Is there anything with a bigger sound stage or more "space" in the sound? The 25 1 iis seems like all the music is too up front and its hard to differentiate the different instruments. 

Edited by port11 - 2/12/14 at 7:43pm
post #2 of 10

You say that you want accurate, but then talk about "fun" and bass.  I don't think all of that goes together very well.  Further at least two of the cans you listed have a not-so neutral/accurate sound signature.


Take a look at the DT 880 and see how it meshes with what you want.

post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

Which two? The DT880 looks really good, I'e never had an open headphone before so I'm nervous if it will sound better than the 25-1 iis. I feel like I'd prefer closed since I listen/make EDM, but not sure. I also will be using these for streaming some music, but all only at home. I need a nice tight and  bass for genres like Hardcore/ Metal to hear the kick clearly. 

Edited by port11 - 2/13/14 at 11:49am
post #4 of 10

Accurate vs. "fun" + bass (which, from your post, I read as bass above neutral).


You need fast headphones for EDM.  Fast headphones = fast decay.  Fast decay is very unlikely to give you the bass you also seek, especially within your budget or below it.

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

Ahh okay. I guess I was just wondering if there was any in the 400$ price range that stood up to the 25-1 iis. But after reading reviews it looks like I should just keep them..could they benefit from an amp? 


I tried reading a bunch of reviews on the DT880 and they say theyre open so they sound "significantly different" than the 25 1 iis, its hard to guess if that would be an upgrade or not. Plus all the reviews love the 25-1 iis but say it has a small soundstage, and I think that might be the problem for me. Is there any that sound the same except with a bigger soundstage? Is this what the 880 does?

post #6 of 10

Your Senns are made to play from low powered sources--like an ipod.  A better quality amp may help them a bit but the extra power is not needed.


The DT 880 is semi-open.  You can read more about it here:




and here:



post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

After reading a bunch of reviews I heard that the DT880 got a little grainy on the trebbles which was a bit of a turnoff. I had multiple people say the HE400 is better than the HD 25 1 iis in regards to sound quality. Can anyone confirm this?


Also, I've asked like 10 different people, and everyone recommends me something different and once I finally think I decide on something, Il ask about that one and get recomended something else again. Its been a very stressful process for trying to decide what to buy so far.


But as of now I'm between the DT880 and he400. All are pretty cheap (300 or under) and Im willing to spend up to 400$ on a pair if it will sound better. But I was also thinking of getting the he400 and pair it with a 100$ amp. Does anyone know hwo either of these options will sound compared to the HD 25 1 iis? Or if someone knows another upgrade from the 25 1 iis let me know!


edit: I actually just read more reviews saying there isnt enough bass in the he400, and I like some bass when listening..SO i might try the Sennheiser HD 8.

Edited by port11 - 2/13/14 at 3:26pm
post #8 of 10

With the DT 880, HE-400 (and HD 600, HD 650 & Q 701) you are talking about quality mid-fi cans.  It mostly comes down to preferred sound signature and personal preference--including comfort issues.  This should not be stressful.  Instead it should be fun.  You should make the effort to listen to as many as you are able before you decide.  There aren't any bad choices here (at least for most).  All these cans are open or semi-open and over ear, which make them different from your 25.  They also all require an amp, which your 25 does not.


On my ledger the HE-400 falls below the rest because its mids are not neutral or entirely natural.  However, your mileage may vary.  Many will pick the HE-400 for its bass--especially now that it can be had at a closeout price.


I will add that the discussion of the weaknesses of the DT 880 is relative to the flagship can class, which can reach $2,000 headphones.  You will also see that the Flagship piece rates it at an A+ value for the money.

Edited by KG Jag - 2/13/14 at 3:28pm
post #9 of 10

Originally Posted by port11 View Post


edit: I actually just read more reviews saying there isnt enough bass in the he400, and I like some bass when listening..SO i might try the Sennheiser HD 8.

 These folks must be bassheads.


"BASS: Very few headphones possess as deeply textured, well-extended, and impactful bass as the HE-400. I must stress that the bass in particular is drastically improved when switching from the stock faux-leather earpads to the HifiMan velour earpads (which one must purchase separately). When listening for the fullness of sub-bass and bass frequencies, the HE-400 performs with flying colors."






Having heard the HE-400 multiple times and in at least two different revisions, I am in general agreement.  In fact one version of the HE-400 that was released (I believe an early one) was very dark--too dark to be even neutral-ish.

post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 

I guess I am in-between audiophile and bass head, closer to the basehead side. That is why I loved my beats studios back when I had them, this is what worried me about buying:


"For audiophiles who don't normally listen to bassy music or use basshead headphone will call the HE-400 bass heavy. For us basshead it's not even entry level. It's nice bass but lacking in quantity even with a bass boosting amp. The FiiO E12 with it's weak bass boost did not do much in uping the bass quantity. The quality of bass is great though."


Even if it has better quality, if the bass is quieter than HD25 1 iis I don't want to make the switch. So I was looking at something like the Sennheiser Momentum or HD6. Also NAD Viso HP50 look good, but the only ones available to try at Guitar Center are the 25-1 iis.

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