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Want a pair of flat, closed-back, comfortable, over ear headphones under $400 with a good seal.

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

I have been looking for a pair of closed-back headphones with a good seal that won't disturb anyone around me or vice versa, that are comfortable enough for listening periods upwards of 2 hours, and that have a flat enough response so I can use them to create music as well as listen to it. I've tried the ATH-M50's but found that they didn't fit on my head correctly and were very uncomfortable. I've tried the Beyerdynamic DT-700's which had a great seal and were like clouds on my head but found they were severely lacking in bass response. I then tried the Beyerdynamic Custom One Pro's which fit the bill with comfort and seal, but were lacking in the mids and had too much bass for their response to be considered anywhere flat. I have been considering several headphones, and I wanted to hear what people have to say about them as well as get recommendations for other headphones.

 

The headphones I've been considering are:

 

AKG K550's

AKG Q701's

SoundMAGIC HP100's

Shure SRH840's

 

 

Thanks, AudioConbob57.


Edited by AudioConbob57 - 4/12/14 at 10:18am
post #2 of 17

AKG K550 does not seal well. The angling and pad size was awkward in my experience.

AKG Q701 is open so won't meet your criteria.

 

I haven't tried the SoundMAGIC HP100 or Shure SRH840.

 

I would recommend either the Focal Spirit Pro, Focal Spirit Classic, or NAD HP50. They all have a neutral sound and should seal well.

 

Link to reviews:

http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/two-strike-zone-focal-spirit-professional-and-spirit-classic

http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/i-love-these-headphonesthe-nad-viso-hp50

post #3 of 17

I would recommend either the NAD Viso HP50's, the AKG K545's, and the Focal Spirit Professionals. I currently own the K545's if you have any questions about them. 

post #4 of 17

The SoundMagic 100s are very flat and neutral and meet the rest of your needs. You might want to replace the stock pads because even though they are comfortable and plush, many people have found that they aren't thick enough so the ear touches the driver a bit. Other than that, I would definitely recommend the SoundMagics.

post #5 of 17

had both 840 and HP100;

The Shure 840 is bright with mid-bass bump, 

the HP100 is an upgrade in sound over the shures. also, really neutral.

 

I still have the Q701;

It is not neutral (forward upper mids, and big rounded bass), and also is completely open (no seal at all)

 

I can't comment on the others (HP50's, FSP, K550/551), but the FSPs are not considered comfortable when comparing to other HPs which are over-the-ear (the Focal Spirit Pro/Classic are smaller).


Edited by eyal1983 - 4/12/14 at 4:10pm
post #6 of 17

The AKG K545 is definitely worth looking at. razordogaudio on eBay is selling it for $190 ($60 off MSRP). The K545 fixes the seal issues of the 550 in addition to being much more portable. I had the opportunity to try them on at the Harman flagship store in NYC and the fit and comfort is excellent. The pads in particular were a noticeable improvement over the M50. Sound quality is pretty similar to the M50 - that is, my M50 that is equalized as flat as possible. The bass, however, has a tightness that the M50 can't possibly match, and the subbass comes through clearly; while the M50 has a substantial subbass response, on songs with subbass and midbass pumping in unison, the midbass tends to overshadow the subbass and muddy up the sound. I heard a bit of a treble spike during my audition, which is indicated in the goldenears.net measurements. I just ordered the K545 off razordog and am looking forward to them replacing my M50 as my "all-around" headphone. 

post #7 of 17

I've got mixed feelings on the K545's. The bass is a bit too much for my preference. Mids and vocals sound slightly recessed, and I can't enjoy my favorite genres (acoustic, rock, classical) because of it. I also can't get them to work with any cable extensions, so they're strictly for portable use. The overall sound and build quality is quite impressive for the price, however.  

post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by NotaLefty View Post
 

I've got mixed feelings on the K545's. The bass is a bit too much for my preference. Mids and vocals sound slightly recessed, and I can't enjoy my favorite genres (acoustic, rock, classical) because of it. I also can't get them to work with any cable extensions, so they're strictly for portable use. The overall sound and build quality is quite impressive for the price, however.  

 

+1 It actually has more bass quantity than both the Bowers & Wilkins P7 and the V-Moda XS due to its slower decay. 

post #9 of 17

K545 is close, but has too much bass for "flat".

SRH840 is not flat at all, but still pretty good overall.

 

Forget Q701, but another fellow around here was going on and on about one of its older versions, K702, being awesome for production.  All Q701/K701 variants are not closed.

 

K545? Slower decay?  That's what I'd say about Senns and Grados, not K545, lol.  Slower decay gives you a thicker sound, even if bass quantity is somewhat lacking.  More bass quantity can contribute to a thicker sound, yet not vice versa.


Edited by Mad Max - 4/12/14 at 10:30pm
post #10 of 17

My pair of DT770 Premium 600 ohm is pretty flat sounding, if you can find a pair (pretty rare nowadays) grab them.

post #11 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad Max View Post
 

K545 is close, but has too much bass for "flat".

SRH840 is not flat at all, but still pretty good overall.

 

Forget Q701, but another fellow around here was going on and on about one of its older versions, K702, being awesome for production.  All Q701/K701 variants are not closed.

 

K545? Slower decay?  That's what I'd say about Senns and Grados, not K545, lol.  Slower decay gives you a thicker sound, even if bass quantity is somewhat lacking.  More bass quantity can contribute to a thicker sound, yet not vice versa.

 

I disagree with that statement, and use the M-100 as an example.  It's got a lot of bass, but a quicker bass decay (with stock pads anyway) which makes the bass actually have perceptually less quantity in contrast to the K545 in many instances.  My statement basically goes that the time domain has as much to do with the quantity as the intensity does for a given frequency at a given time.  Our hearing isn't 0-dimensional.  This is highly OT, so if you do want to reply, please go through PM. 

post #12 of 17
And no mention of H6 hehe


I prefer the K550 over SRH-840 unless the K550 is too big for you which is a common issue but then again, there is the K545

Hope it helps
Billson smily_headphones1.gif
post #13 of 17
Thread Starter 

Thanks guys, this really helps!

post #14 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioConbob57 View Post

Thanks guys, this really helps!

Do let us know what you ended up with and what you think about it hehe xD

Happy listening!
Billson smily_headphones1.gif
post #15 of 17

Mad Dog 3.2 end of story :) I literally have it on for 8 hours playing starcraft and listen to music

Sennheiser momentum is pretty good too!

 

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